11 August 2020
Peace activists disrupted work at the Brisbane office of Boeing Defence this morning, saying the company’s construction of weaponised drones and other autonomous weapons is part of a militarism that is out of control.
Spokesperson Greg Rolles said “We are here today because Boeing builds aircraft for war crimes. The attack helicopter that killed journalists in the infamous ‘Collateral Murder’ video was Boeing’s. Boeing unmanned drones have destroyed civilian infrastructure in Yemen, enabled an unlawful campaign of extra-judicial assassination, and left countless people in fear of their own skies.”
Mr Rolles said “Boeing’s further research into artificial intelligence will take humanity even more out of the loop. Boeing is now building armed drones in Brisbane and siphoning money out of Australian communities into the production of weapons designed to kill. Boeing is out of control.”
The Australian government this year committed to contributing $40 million to Boeing’s development of the autonomous combat aircraft “Loyal Wingman”. The Department of Defence’s Force Structure Plan stated “new and existing aircraft will combine with remotely piloted and autonomous systems to provide increased lethality and survivability.”
Mr Rolles said “the impacts of the climate crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic this year have shown clearly that our real security comes not from bigger bombs but from better co-operation; from technology that conserves life rather than that which kills. Yet Boeing is taking our taxpayers money and some of the brightest engineering minds to develop weapons that increase conflict, and artificial intelligence that takes human connection and empathy out of the picture. The militarism embodied by companies like Boeing is out of control, and the future of humanity depends on us taking it back.”