Neuroscientists have made huge breakthroughs in our understanding of the inner workings of the mind, particularly how various regions of the brain are linked to specific cognitive processes. This is powerful knowledge... and it could be headed to the battlefield.


That's the finding of a new report by the UK's Royal Society, that warns these advances in neuroscience could lead to the creation of new weapons that attack enemy forces by disabling parts of their minds. Gases or even electronic devices could be specifically targeted to take down vital regions of the brain.

There's also some real danger in the flip side of this, in which the military attempts to improve the battle-readiness of its soldiers through these types of brain hacks. They might make for better soldiers, but that could well come at the expense of the soldiers' overall health, and the panel argues there are serious ethical questions about whether such neural weaponry violates human rights.


In the video up top, panel chairperson Professor Rod Flower of Queen Mary, University of London explains the findings of the report. For a more complete picture of the future of neuroscience on the battlefield, you can check out the complete report here.

Via the Royal Society.

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