Google, bureaucracy lost the AI war with China says DoD’s first software chief in parting shot

FPI / October 19, 2021


The Pentagon’s software chief said he resigned because China has already won the artificial intelligence (AI) war.

Nicolas Chaillan, the Defense Department’s first chief software officer, slammed Google for not working on AI with the DoD while Chinese companies are obliged to work with the Communist Party that rules China.

Nicolas Chaillan

Meanwhile, Chaillan said China is moving toward global dominance because of its technological advances while the United States wastes time debating the ethics of AI.

“We have no competing fighting chance against China in 15 to 20 years. Right now, it’s already a done deal; it is already over in my opinion,” Chaillan told the Financial Times.

China, the world’s second largest economy behind the U.S., is likely to dominate many of the key emerging technologies, particularly artificial intelligence, synthetic biology and genetics within a decade or so, according to Western intelligence assessments.

Chaillan said he resigned in protest against the slow pace of technological transformation in the U.S. military, adding that the failure to respond was putting the United States at risk.

Chaillan described U.S. cyber defenses in some government departments as being at “kindergarten level”.

The Pentagon’s software chief said there is “good reason to be angry” at the U.S. failing to rise to China’s cyber threat, even fearing that it puts his children’s future at risk.

He claimed that the U.S., like Beijing, should have prioritized artificial intelligence, machine learning and cyber capabilities over traditional military spending like building new fighter jets.

“While we wasted time in bureaucracy, our adversaries moved further ahead,” Chaillan wrote in a scathing letter on LinkedIn last month when first announcing his resignation.

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