• An Israeli military reserves organisation has purchased three robot dogs for occupation forces, reportedly to be used in the ongoing invasion of the Gaza Strip.

TEL AVIV (Agencies): Brothers in Arms, an organisation consisting of men and women from various units in Israel’s military reserves, was reported this week to have purchased three robot dogs for occupation forces operating in Gaza, specifically to collect intelligence and to “assist combat soldiers in operating optimally in the field”.

The three Vision 60 robot dogs – manufactured by the American company, Ghost Robotics, and costing $130,000 each – possess several capabilities including scouting areas above and below ground, being highly mobile and agile, able to climb piles of dirt and rubble, walk through deep puddles and float on their surfaces, as well as being able to get back on their feet if flipped over.

They are also semi-autonomous, able to control their speed of movement and come to a halt without human intervention, and possess laser radar (lidar) capabilities which allow them to conduct 3D mapping of their surrounding environment, helping them to locate hidden explosive charges.

However, some disadvantages of the robot dogs include their short battery life of up to three hours – but reported to be practically only half of that on the field – and their inability to carry over 10 kilograms.

Having been operational in the United States military since 2020, the robot dogs are unarmed but possess the technical ability to be armed with a submachine gun with an advanced optic sight, a thermal camera for night vision, and a range of 1.2 kilometers.

That capability has been the subject of notable controversy recently, sparking fears of their potentially deadly combat use on the battlefield. So far, however, reports state that Israel’s utilisation of robot dogs will only be for intelligence and scouting purposes, although the Israeli reserves organisation has not sufficiently expanded on the issue.

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