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Expert Group Issued Artificial Intelligence Report: America Not AI Ready

The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence is an independent Commission that was established on August 13, 2018, pursuant to Section 1051 of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (P.L. 115-232). Its purpose is “to consider the methods and means necessary to advance the development of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and associated technologies in order to address comprehensively the national security and defense needs of the United States.” It recently issued its final report after two years of study.

The bipartisan commission of 15 technologists, national security professionals, business executives, and academic leaders met recently. The letter from the chair, Eric Schmidt, the former Google CEO, “is delivering an uncomfortable message: America is not prepared to defend or compete in the AI era. This is the tough reality we must face. It is this reality that demands comprehensive, whole-of-nation action.”

“The letter highlights the threat and competition from China. “But we must win the AI competition that is intensifying strategic competition with China. China’s plans, resources, and progress should concern all Americans. It is an AI peer in many areas and an AI leader in some applications. We take seriously China’s ambition to surpass the United States as the world’s AI leader within a decade.”

The report, “presents an integrated national strategy to reorganize the government, reorient the nation, and rally our closest allies and partners to defend and compete in the coming era of AI-accelerated competition and conflict. It is a two-pronged approach. Part I ‘Defending America in the AI Era,’ outlines the stakes, explains what the United States must do to defend against the spectrum of AI-related threats, and recommends how the U.S. government can responsibly use AI technologies to protect the American people and our interests. Part II, ‘Winning the Technology Competition,’ addresses the critical elements of the AI competition and recommends actions the government must take to promote AI innovation to improve national competitiveness and protect critical U.S. advantages.”

Recommendations for defending America in the AI Era include:

Defend against emerging AI-enabled threats to America’s free and open society
Prepare for future warfare
Manage risks associated with AI-enabled and autonomous weapons
Transform national intelligence
Scale up digital talent in government
Establish justified confidence in AI systems
Present a democratic model of AI use for national security

To win the technology competition, the report suggests:

Organize a White House–led strategy for technology competition
Win the global talent competition
Accelerate AI innovation at home
Implement comprehensive intellectual property (IP) policies and regimes
Build a resilient domestic base for designing and fabricating microelectronics
Protect America’s technology advantages
Build a favorable international technology order
Win the associated technologies competitions

The report expresses a deep sense of urgency and proposed, “By 2025, the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community must be AI-ready.”

Source: National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence

2021 Final Report