The Army Is Worried Movies Gave Killer Cyborgs A Bad Rap


Vice got their hands on a report written by the U.S. Army titled "Cyborg Soldiers 2050: Human/Machine Fusion And The Implications Of The Future Of The DOD". It's basically a few dozen pages of the military whining about how they want cybernetically enhanced soldiers so bad ("Please! They can be our birthday and Christmas gifts!") but popular culture has given them a bad rap.

First off, it's a travesty that "Cyborg Soldiers 2050" isn't already a 2011 straight to DVD B-movie starring Casper Van Dien. And if you're writing a report where you're trying to convince people that cyborg killers are actually good, it's probably not wise to give it a title reminiscent of a nonexistent 2011 straight to DVD B-movie starring Casper Van Dien.

The Army Is Worried Movies Gave Killer Cyborgs A Bad Rap
Tristar Pictures/Sony
In the year 2050, cybernetically enhanced super soldiers will be easily identified by their immaculately coiffed hair.

The true purpose of the report (which you can read here) is to spark the imaginations of sociopathic military contractors so they can get a head start on developing what the army thinks the future of American imperialism should look like. Except a lot of the report is just the bizarre idea notebook of a bunch of meatheads with murder boners and a C- in their creative writing class. It talks about the "ocular enhancement" of a soldier's eyes by cramming advanced imaging technology into their heads and "direct neural enhancement of the human brain" so soldiers can control drones and weapon systems with their minds. All in all, it reads like a pitch document for every first-person shooter that came out in the years following Halo.

The most interesting part is when they take the time to complain that their dream of creating an army of Darth Vaders would be tough to make real since the common Hollywood depictions of killer cyborgs that aren't totally flattering:

"Mass media, including film and literature, is also a known stage for demonization of cyborgs. From Frankenstein to the Terminator, the message is often that technology's integration with the human body robs the human spirit of its compassion and leads to violence and grave, unintended consequences."

Isn't it just like the extremely powerful to complain about not being able to do things that absolutely no one will ever be able to stop them from doing? Lockheed Martin and Boston Dynamics will be more than happy to supply them with battalions of Cybernetic Death Men who straddle the line between dead flesh and living machine regardless of how terribly tweets about it get ratio'd. No amount of failed Robocop reboots will stop them.

For years, science-fiction authors have been warning of world militaries using advanced technologies to more quickly and efficiently dispatch whoever the spinning wheel of enemy combatants has landed on that week. Sorry, legends of Science Fiction. It didn't work. No matter what anybody says, war tech will keep on evolving, much in the same way that your phone will keep getting thinner, smarter, and play porn at more brilliant resolutions.

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