The Future of Warfare – Part 3 Page 3

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Future by Film

Films have long been a source of great future policing ideas. Notable future law enforcement movies that immediately come to mind are RoboCop, Judge Dredd and Demolition Man. Coincidentally, the title of this article “The Future Of Law Enforcement” was also part of the tagline for the RoboCop film, which reads…

Part man. Part machine. All cop. The future of law enforcement.

RoboCopThe 1987 pop film RoboCop sees a part man, part machine entity roaming the streets to tackle the hardest of armed criminals. It is basically a very intelligent robot, with parts of the human brain. Peter Weller stars as the ill-fated cop Officer Alex Murphy, who then goes on to become RoboCop. Like in the military, robots have their place in future policing. At the end of the day, it is desired that the job get done as quickly and efficiently as possible, with minimal good guy casualties and maximum apprehension of the bad guys, preferably without harm. RoboCop, however, is violent. He is a very efficient killing machine. I don’t know if we’ll ever see such a thing as RoboCop in real-life, even in the future, for police missions are in very different theaters of operation than military ones. Civilian casualties must be absolutely minimal, and SWAT missions are usually within the confines of a building where a robot would probably not function too well.

Then there’s ED-209, a rival concept to RoboCop that is a rather large bi-pedal, fully-automated machine armed with something like two 20mm cannons and a rocket launcher. This contraption cannot make arrests, just kill with extreme prejudice — and not always being able to detect a bad guy from someone playing a bad guy for the purposes of demonstration. Oh, and it can’t use stairs, as seen in one scene in the film where it falls from the top to the bottom of a stairwell in a multi-storied car park and ends up on its back. It proceeds to flail around and whine like a child having a temper tantrum, quite funny.

RoboCop Custom Auto-9For those of you that are interested, the handgun that RoboCop uses is a modification of an actual real gun. The gun is called the “RoboCop Custom Auto-9”, and is in fact the Beretta M93R. In the film it has its look updated to make it longer and appear more menacing. It appears to be automatic, but in fact fires in three-round bursts.

Judge Dredd, which came out in 1995 and features Sylvester Stallone as the title character, is another cop film set in the future, and the most notable thing being JD’s voice-selectable gun. He basically has one gun that does everything, and just by talking into it, telling it what ammo he wants selected, his gun can become a whole new ball game. He can say something like “Rapid Fire” to make the gun fire in 3-round bursts, or “Armor Piercing” to select said ammo.

The 1993 film Demolition Man, which also stars Sylvester Stallone, is set in the future, but the police in the film don’t appear to be that much different from current cops. No robots in sight, the weapons used to apprehend criminals have merely been revised. Stun batons called “glow rods” are used to render a suspect unconscious and guns are no longer used, being made redundant and can only be viewed in museums. For anyone interested, the particle weapon carried by the main criminal, Simon Phoenix, called the “magnetic accelerator gun”, is actually a Heckler & Koch G11, an experimental assault rifle made by the leading German weapon manufacturers that used caseless ammunition. The futuristic police cars used by the cops in the film is actually also a real car, the General Motors Ultralite.

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