EU - Drones Patrolling Europe’s Borders

Arno Froese

Imagine you’re hiking through the woods near a border. Suddenly, you hear a mechanical buzzing, like a gigantic bee. Two quadcopters have spotted you and swoop in for a closer look. Antennae on both drones and on a nearby autonomous ground vehicle pick up the radio frequencies coming from the cell phone in your pocket. They send the signals to a central server, which triangulates your exact location and feeds it back to the drones. The robots close in.

This is not science fiction. The European Union is financing a project to develop drones piloted by artificial intelligence and designed to autonomously patrol Europe’s borders. The drones will operate in swarms, coordinating and corroborating information among fleets of quadcopters, small fixed-wing airplanes, ground vehicles, submarines, and boats. Developers of the project, known as Roborder, say the robots will be able to identify humans and independently decide whether they represent a threat. If they determine that you may have committed a crime, they will notify border police.

Political parties across the European Union are winning elections on anti-immigrant platforms and enacting increasingly restrictive border policies. Tech ethicists and privacy advocates worry that Roborder and projects like it outsource too much law enforcement work to nonhuman actors and could easily be weaponized against people in border areas.

“The development of these systems is a dark step into morally dangerous territory,” said Noel Sharkey, emeritus professor of robotics and artificial intelligence at Sheffield University in the U.K. and one of the founders of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control, a nonprofit that advocates against the military use of robotics. Sharkey lists examples of weaponized drones currently on the market: flying robots equipped with Tasers, pepper spray, rubber bullets, and other weapons. He warns of the implications of combining that technology with AI-based decision-making and using it in politically-charged border zones. “It’s only a matter of time before a drone will be able to take action to stop people,” Sharkey told The Intercept., 11 May 2019

Arno's commentary

Europe has become the model for the world: open borders virtually throughout the continent. Hundreds of thousands of desperate people from Africa’s shores, risk their lives to reach the “promised land.” Why Europe? There are at least three reasons: 1. security; 2. low crime rate; and 3. the attraction of the highest-paid workforce in the world.

Here we are reminded of the prophecies of Daniel, who summarizes all of Gentile history in four power structures: Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece and Rome. The ancient Roman Empire ruled Europe and virtually all of the Mediterranean countries. From there, they spread throughout the world, conquering virtually all of Asia and Africa, and later the continent of America (North and South). Thus, Europe/Rome is the only identity which literally and physically conquered the entire world. We are living in the time we may call the iron-clay empire.

Who represents the clay? Here the words of Jeremiah 18:6 should be noted: “O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.” And Israel confesses in Isaiah 64:8: “But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.” That’s the identity the prophet Daniel describes: “His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay” (Daniel 2:33).

How does this relate to the drone article? With artificial intelligence, all movements of people will be controlled and registered, and that without borders, walls, concrete barriers, and barbed wire. Europe’s intention is clearly demonstrated in their motto: “United in diversity.” Because, in the end, the nations of the world will become one. But there is one exception—Israel, although that nation greatly desires to be as all other nations. Yet the Creator of heaven and earth, the God who has chosen Israel to be a special people, will not allow it.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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