Lieutenant General Richard G. Moore, USAF, Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Programs

Lieutenant General Richard G. Moore, USAF

Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Programs

Richard Garner Moore, Jr., was born in Houston, Texas. He earned an undergraduate degree in science and chemistry from the U.S. Air Force Academy and a Master of Engineering Management from Washington State University. He also holds a Master of Science in International Security Studies from the Air War College and has taken advantage of numerous other educational opportunities afforded him by the military. He is a command pilot with more than 4,000 hours in a variety of aircraft. 

Moore has commanded the squadron, group, and wing levels. He has had duty assignments around the U.S., in Germany, and in Turkey. He served as aide-de-camp to the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon. Prior to his current position, Moore was the director of programs, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Programs, at the Air Force Headquarters in the Pentagon. 

In the News…

A report from the Congressional Research Service in March said that lethal autonomous weapon systems are “a special class of weapon systems that use sensor suites and computer algorithms to independently identify a target and employ an onboard weapon system to engage and destroy the target without manual human control of the system.” 

Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Programs, Lieutenant General Richard G. Moore, Jr., was asked when the United States would begin deploying those artificial intelligence weapons and if the military had an ethical duty to keep humans involved even when the technology is ready. The lieutenant general stated the U.S. is not yet ready to deploy them, but it is an area the Defense Department is particularly concerned about. 

“What will the adversary do? It depends [on] who plays by the rules of warfare and who doesn’t. … There are societies that have a very different foundation [than] ours,” he said. “Our society is a Judeo-Christian society, and we have a moral compass. Not everybody does. And there are those that are willing to go for the ends, regardless of what means have to be employed. And we’ll have to be ready for that.” 

He said the development of ethical AI will be a significant feature of the DoD 2024 budget. “And that takes several forms. The first one is what do we think we’re allowed to let AI [do]? The second one is how do we know how the algorithm made decisions? And do we trust it? And the third one is, at what point are we ready to let the algorithm start doing some things on its own that maybe we are or aren’t comfortable with?” Lt. General Moore said. 

“You might actually think that if you can understand how the algorithm makes decisions and trust it, you might rather have that algorithm that never gets hot and never gets tired, it never gets hungry. You might rather have it making decisions for you,” he said. “Until you have in place the foundations of ethical AI that allow that to happen, you can’t get there. So it is a very important discussion. It’s one that’s being held at the very highest levels of the Department of Defense.” 


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