Pentagon solicits virtual reality tech to prep soldiers for ‘battlefield nuclear warfare’

The Pentagon has put out a name for virtual reality coaching environments with “radiological/nuclear considerations” – one other signal that the US’ unhealthy obsession with nuclear warfare isn’t going away anytime quickly.

The Defense Threat Reduction Agency, a Department of Defense division centered on countering weapons of mass destruction, is wanting for virtual reality methods it can use to practice fight forces in a “battlefield nuclear warfare environment.” The company issued a “sources sought notice” final week, searching for technical specs and different market info on “virtual training and testing programs” for fight troops “performing radiological threat objects find and interdict operations” – in addition to combating on the nuclear “battlefield.”

“AR/VR capabilities will not replace field training requirements,” the discover states, including that its “function is to check warfighter situations and decision-making to present customers reasonable outcomes to help coaching and course-of-action choice when confronted with radiological/nuclear threats.” It may additionally be used for “planning training scenarios” and “equipment testing events.” While the addition of a practical VR overlay of post-nuclear devastation might make soldiers extra reluctant to push the large crimson button, that call has by no means been left to the rank-and-file, and it’s unlikely their commanders will probably be lining up to expertise even essentially the most high-tech post-apocalyptic coaching module.

The US army is more and more counting on coaching simulators, which carry apparent benefits together with price – avoiding the necessity to transport troops to the international locations they’re coaching to occupy – and security. The military awarded two contracts for coaching simulators final month with the objective of in the end producing 400 totally different location-specific coaching environments. And virtual reality is the one approach to present soldiers with coaching in a post-nuclear situation – for now, no less than.

It’s the obligation of a nation’s army to be ready, and the Pentagon’s nuclear prepping wouldn’t be practically so sinister if it hadn’t posted, then eliminated, a Joint Chiefs of Staff technique paper final month offering “principles and guidance to plan, execute, and assess nuclear operation.” The chilling doc matter-of-factly suggests “using nuclear weapons could create conditions for decisive results and the restoration of strategic stability.” Nor was that an remoted burst of nuclear cheerleading. Last month, Air Force Chief of Staff David Goldfein recommended that the army piggyback its nuclear command and management perform on the ever-growing community of business satellites.

The US pulled out of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty earlier this 12 months, instantly embarking on the event of missiles that had been banned underneath the settlement. When the one army that has ever used nuclear weapons suggests there’s ever a suitable time and place for their deployment, it’s comprehensible why the remainder of the world may fear.