For years, we've been warning that it was only a matter of time — and now, the inevitable has happened.
Somebody strapped an honest-to-god sniper rifle to the back of a quadrupedal robot dog.
An image shared on Twitter by military robot maker Ghost Robotics shows the terrifying contraption in all its dystopian glory.
"Keeping our [special ops] teams armed with the latest lethality innovation," the caption reads.
Latest lethality 6.5 #creedmoor sniper payload from @SWORDINT. Check out the latest partner payloads @AUSAorg Wash DC. Keeping US and allied #sof #warfighter equipped with the latest innovations. @USSOCOM #defense #defence #NationalSecurity #drone #robotics pic.twitter.com/Dvk6OvL3Bu
— Ghost Robotics (@Ghost_Robotics) October 11, 2021
It's a nightmare come to life, a death machine designed to kill with precision on the battlefield.
"This is sad," one Twitter user commented. "In what world is this a good idea? I bet police is salivating at the chance to use these."
There's a lot we don't know about the machine, but according to an Instagram post by Sword International, a gun manufacturer, the machine is called the SPUR or Special Purpose Unmanned Rifle.
"The [SPUR] was specifically designed to offer precision fire from unmanned platforms such as the Ghost Robotics Vision-60 quadruped," reads Sword's website. "Due to its highly capable sensors the SPUR can operate in a magnitude of conditions, both day and night."
We don't know what level of autonomy the robot has or if it was designed to be fully remotely operated. We also don't know who the machine was developed for.
The four-legged robot is lugging a sniper capable of shooting 6.5 millimeter Creedmoor cartridges, a rifle ammunition, which was developed with long-range target shooting in mind.
It's a troubling new development. Any new robot built with the intent to kill should have us worried.