Friday, June 16, 2023

DOD Committed to Ethical Use of Artificial Intelligence

June 15, 2023 | By Joseph Clark , DOD News |

DOD policy on AI is publicly available

The Department of Defense (DoD) of the United States has recognized the transformative potential of artificial intelligence (AI) in enhancing military capabilities and addressing emerging security challenges. With the aim of harnessing AI technologies to maintain technological superiority and strengthen national defense, the DoD has formulated a comprehensive policy framework. This policy emphasizes the responsible and ethical development, deployment, and use of AI systems by the military. It encompasses guidelines for AI research, acquisition, and implementation, focusing on ensuring transparency, accountability, and human control over AI-enabled systems. By promoting collaboration, innovation, and adherence to ethical standards, the DoD seeks to leverage AI effectively while upholding the principles of safety, reliability, and national security.--Editorial Desk

The Defense Department is prioritizing ethical considerations
and collaboration in its approach to developing and fielding military applications of artificial intelligence, a top Pentagon technology official said today.

Michael C. Horowitz, the director of the emerging capabilities policy office in the office of the undersecretary of defense for policy, underscored the U.S.' commitment to leading the international conversation surrounding artificial intelligence during a panel discussion in Washington on setting rules and expectations for emerging technologies in national security.
A man in uniform points to a computer screen

Underpinning this commitment, Horowitz said, is a comprehensive set of policy decisions within DOD that governs the development and fielding of autonomous weapon systems, ethical artificial intelligence strategy, and the development of responsible artificial intelligence strategy and pathways.

U.S. leadership, in codifying these principles, is now driving responsible artificial intelligence policy formulation among international partners, he said.

A photo illustration depicting a soldier wearing virtual reality glasses with a chess set in the foreground

"If you look at NATO's ethical AI principles, for example, they're very similar to the Defense Department's ethical AI principles and that's not that's not an accident," Horowitz said. "It reflects in many ways the sort of common values and perspective on how we're thinking about... when we would want to use AI and how."

He said U.S. also led on the international stage by issuing its Political Declaration of Responsible Military use of Artificial Intelligence and Autonomy in February.

In this post a photo illustration depicting a soldier wearing virtual reality glasses with a chess set in the foreground.

"That's a set of strong norms that lay out principles of what responsible use looks like that we're now working to bring other countries on board to endorse since we think that bringing the international community together on this issue, that there is a lot of possibility for cooperation and we want to encourage the rest of the world to take these issues as seriously as the department has," Horowitz said. "And in looking at our allies and partners, we're really encouraged by that."

That commitment to the responsible development of artificial intelligence, and its transparency concerning the development of policy surrounding emerging technologies, is also how the U.S. has distinguished itself from its global competitors, he said.

He said all DOD policy surrounding artificial intelligence and emerging technology is publicly available.

A small drone is photographed while hovering

"That's in contrast to some of the competitors of the United States who are a lot less transparent in what their policies are concerning the development and use of artificial intelligence and autonomous systems, including autonomous weapons systems," Horowitz said. "And we think that there's a real distinction there."

At the same time, the U.S. has remained committed to being at the leading edge of emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence, Horowitz said.

He said the rapid advance of the technology has opened up a wide array of use cases for artificial intelligence beyond defense. The U.S. continues to be "an engine of innovation when it comes to AI."

"The Defense Department does lots and lots of different experimentation with emerging technologies," Horowitz said. "And we both want to do them in a safe and responsible way, but also want to do them in a way that can push forward the cutting edge and ensure the department has access to the emerging technologies that it needs to stay ahead."

Monday, October 31, 2022

Russia Continues Attacks on Ukraine Civilian Targets

Oct. 31, 2022 | By Jim Garamone , DOD News |   

Russia is continuing its campaign of terror attacks on Ukraine as it targets civilian infrastructure, said senior defense officials. 

The Ukrainian military has been able to defend against some of the Russian attacks, but air defense remains a priority. "Damage to the electric grid and water supply are serious concerns directly harming the civilian population," a senior defense official said.  

The United States is working with the Ukrainian military, allies and partners to improve Ukraine's defenses.  

Two service members stand in a field and fire a shoulder-launched missile.

The United States has already provided 1,400 Stinger short-range air defense weapons. Allies and partners have also provided short-range air defense.

The U.S. has committed to sending eight National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems – NASAMs – to Ukraine. Two of those systems are being sent in the next few weeks with the others to follow. Ukrainian soldiers are already being trained to use the system, which shoots many different missiles. NASAMs can defend against a wide range of airborne threats. 

"We also have committed to a suite of counter, unmanned aerial systems, including the Vampire system and other radar systems," officials said. 

And more is being done. "The U.S. also helped support Slovakia's donation of an S-300 system earlier in the war," the official said. "This was incredibly important to protect Ukrainian infrastructure at that point in time, and the U.S. also sourced many spare parts to keep Ukraine's Soviet-type air defense systems up and running." 

Germany and Spain have recently sent air defense systems to Ukraine. A key to this is integrating all of these systems from many different nations to protect Ukraine, and that remains an on-going effort. 

The senior defense official said the latest tranche of security assistance the United States will provide Ukraine includes additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or HIMARS; 500 rounds of precision-guided 155 millimeter artillery rounds; and more than 1,300 anti-armor systems, including the shoulder-launched multipurpose assault weapon. The package – valued at $275 million – also includes Humvees and satellite communications antennas. 

On the ground, the battle continues with Russia’s attack on infrastructure causing widespread power outages. In and around Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second largest city, Ukrainian forces have liberated some additional villages as they continue to press toward the east. Russian forces in this area are focused on reinforcing their defensive lines. 

Farther south, Russian forces are attempting to pursue offensive operations. In Kherson, "we continue to see deliberate and calibrated operations by Ukrainian forces as they press Russian forces along the three main axes," a senior military official said. "We assess that the Russians in this area continue to reinforce their defensive lines, as well." 

U.S. officials said they’re tracking the reports and Russian statements regarding an alleged attack against Russian navy vessels in Sevastopol, a city in Crimea.

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

One Year Since the Conclusion of the Afghanistan War

 Message to the Force                               30th August 2022

Today, we mark one year since the end of the U.S. war in Afghanistan, and I, like so many of you, have been reflecting on the sacrifice that American Service Members, Veterans, their families, and so many others made during America's longest war.

I first want to express my profound gratitude to all who served in Afghanistan, including everyone on our Department of Defense team.  Every American who contributed to our efforts shared a deep devotion to keeping our country safe, working toward a brighter future for the Afghan people, and standing up for liberty, democracy, and the rule of law.  As a veteran of the war, I witnessed firsthand the bravery, selflessness, and compassion that our men and women brought to the fight.  Your efforts make me proud to be your colleague - and even prouder to be an American.

Two decades of noble service demanded significant and selfless sacrifice.  Many Service members still bear the wounds of war, to body and to soul, and 2,461 brave heroes never made it home.  To our Gold Star families: We hold your loved ones in our hearts - and we pledge to you the unwavering commitment of a grateful Nation.

United States went to Afghanistan in 2001
to wage a necessary war of self-defense. 

On September 11, 2001, al-Qaeda terrorists attacked our country.  They were able to plan and execute such a horrific attack because their Taliban hosts had given them safe haven in Afghanistan.  Since 2001, no enemy has been able to launch such an attack on our homeland, and that speaks to the entire U.S. government's efforts to defend our citizens from terrorist threats that could emanate from Afghanistan or anywhere around the globe.

Still, we know this work is not done.  We must keep a relentless focus on counterterrorism - and we are.  Just a few weeks ago, the United States delivered justice to Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden's deputy at the time of the 9/11 attacks.  And in recent months, our military has successfully carried out operations against key ISIS leaders.  We also know that preventing terrorist violence requires much more than military might.  We're committed to supporting a whole-of-government effort to address the root causes of violent extremism.  No one should doubt America's resolve to keep our people safe.

For me, there is no greater testament to the strength of a country's democracy than the fact that millions of people freely choose, every day, to defend it.  Those who step up to serve - whether in uniform or as part of our civilian workforce - do so because of the values we fight for: the rule of law, human dignity, and freedom.

So last year, in the war's final days, the United States, along with our partners and allies, conducted the largest air evacuation of civilians in American history, lifting more than 124,000 people to safety.  I'm proud that our military communities-and Americans from all walks of life-have welcomed our Afghan allies as they begin new lives in our country.

And our values continue to drive the important work that American patriots are doing around the world.  The United States is rushing urgently needed assistance to Ukraine in the face of Russia's unprovoked and reckless invasion.  We are firmly committed to supporting the people of Ukraine and to defending the rules-based international order against autocrats and aggressors anywhere.

As our country looks back on two decades of combat in Afghanistan, I understand that many people have hard questions about the costs of the war and what their sacrifices meant.  These are important discussions, and I hope we will keep having them with thoughtfulness and respect.

Last year, I said that although the Afghanistan war has ended, our gratitude to those who served never will.  Today, I renew that pledge.  To every man and woman who served in Afghanistan: This country will never forget what you did and what you gave.

Thank you.

May God bless you, and may God bless the United States of America.

Lloyd J. Austin, III

Monday, February 28, 2022

MCIP of Ukraine directs letter to Mark Zuckerberg

Posted on 27 February 2022 22:38 

Call to block Facebook pages of Russian propaganda channels

Kyiv:28 February 2022(The Spis News Bureau)::

Culture Emergency International Activity Started in Ukraine due to continued war situation after Russian attack. The Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine has sent a letter to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg with a call to block the Facebook pages of Russian propaganda channels.

In particular, such as: Pervyy Kanal, Rossyia 1, Match TV, NTV, Piatyy Kanal, Rossiya 24, Rossiya K (Culture), Carousel, OTR, TVTzentr, REN TV, Spas, Domashnii, TV-3, Piatnitsa, Zvezda, Myr, TNT, Muz-TV and others that spread Kremlin propaganda.

We count that their actions will not take long. Russia's propaganda machine must finally be destroyed so as not to poison the lives of Ukrainians or the world.

Thursday, February 17, 2022

They resemble German Shepherds

.....but are more compact    

The only breed the program raisesis the BelgianMalinois considred ideal for the military because of their high energy,strong sniffers, trainyability, agility, speed, drive, work ethic, loyalty and when needed, fiercenees. They resemble German Shepherds, but are more compact.

Courtesy: US Defense Department

Friday, March 05, 2021

Warrior Leap

 During the Pennsylvania National Guard Competition 

: 5th March 2021: (USA Defense Department//The Spis News)::

Army Sgt. Ethan White leaps during the Pennsylvania National Guard Best Warrior Competition at Indiantown, Pa., March 3, 2021.

Photo By: Army Sgt. 1st Class Matthew Keeler

Sunday, January 24, 2021

11th National Voters’ Day to be celebrated tomorrow

 Sunday: 24th January 2021 at 05:19 IST

 ECI is celebrating 11th NVD on 25th January 2021 

Honourable President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind will be the Chief Guest at the national function being organized in New Delhi by the Election Commission of India. The event will be held at the Ashok Hotel, New Delhi and the Honourable President shall grace the occasion virtually from Rashtrapati Bhawan.

Union Minister for Law and Justice, Communications and Electronics and Information Technology Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad will grace the function as the Guest of Honour.

The theme for this year’s NVD, ‘Making Our Voters Empowered, Vigilant, Safe and Informed’, envisages active and participative voters during elections. It also focuses on ECI’s commitment towards conducting elections safely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The National Voters’ Day has been celebrated on January 25 every year since 2011, all across the country to mark the foundation day of Election Commission of India, i.e. 25th January 1950. The main purpose of the NVD celebration is to encourage, facilitate and maximize enrolment, especially for the new voters. Dedicated to the voters of the country, the day is utilized to spread awareness among voters and for promoting informed participation in the electoral process. New voters are felicitated and handed over their Elector Photo Identity Card (EPIC) in the NVD functions.

During the event, the Honourable President of India will confer the National Awards for the year 2020-21 and launch ECI’s Web Radio:‘Hello Voters’. The National Awards for the Best Electoral Practices will be conferred on State and District level officers for their outstanding performance in the conduct of elections in different spheres such as IT initiatives, Security Management, Election Management during COVID-19, Accessible Election and contribution in the field of voter awareness and outreach. National Awards will also be given to important stakeholders like national icons, CSOs and media groups for their valuable contribution towards voters’ awareness.

ECI’s Web Radio:‘Hello Voters’: This online digital radio service will stream voter awareness programmes. It will be accessible through a link on the Election Commission of India website. The programming style of Radio Hello Voters has been envisaged to match that of popular FM radio services. It will provide information and education on electoral processes through songs, drama, discussions, spots, stories of elections etc. in Hindi, English and regional languages from all over the country.

Union Minister Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad  will launch the e-EPIC programme and distribute e-EPICs and Elector Photo Identity Cards to five new voters.  e-EPIC, a digital version of the Elector Photo Identity Card can be accessed through the Voter Helpline App and websites   and 

Shri Prasad will also release three publications of the Election Commission during the event. Copies of these documents will be presented to the Honourable President of India. Details of the publications are given below:

Conducting Election During Pandemic- A Photo Journey: This photo book encapsulates the challenging journey of conducting elections amidst a pandemic.  The Commission successfully conducted several elections in the country, beginning with the Biennial Election to the Rajya Sabha.  This was followed by Legislative Assembly Elections in Bihar, one of the biggest such exercises throughout the world during the pandemic. Bye-Elections were also conducted for 60 constituencies in various states of the country. SVEEP Endeavours: Awareness initiatives during Lok Sabha Election, 2019: This book provides a detailed insight into voter awareness interventions, innovations and initiatives during the 17th General Election, conducted in 2019.  It documents the spirit of ‘Desh Ka Mahatyohar’, the biggest festival of democracy celebrated across the nation cutting through the barriers of gender, caste, creed and religion. Chalo Karen Matdaan: It is a comic book which aims at voter education in a fun and thought-provoking way. Targeting young, new and future voters, this comic contains interesting and relatable characters to educate voters at large on electoral processes. (PIB//ECI)