Pentagon’s First Software Chief Resigns Because the Tech War Has Already Been Won, Just Not by the US

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Posted: Oct 12, 2021 7:00 AM
Pentagon’s First Software Chief Resigns Because the Tech War Has Already Been Won, Just Not by the US

Source: AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File

The Pentagon’s former software chief opened up about the reason he left the job—and it should concern U.S. officials and everyday Americans alike.

Nicolas Chaillan, 37, told the Financial Times in an interview published Sunday that on the tech front, China has already won, guaranteeing their hegemony.

“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,” he said.

And regarding America’s cyber defense systems? They’re at a “kindergarten level,” he argued.

Chaillan — who was the Pentagon’s first chief software officer — said China will dominate the future of the world by controlling everything from media narratives to geopolitics.

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

“Whether it takes a war or not is kind of anecdotal,” he told the paper of his prediction of China’s route to future world dominance.

He attacked Google for not working on AI with the US Defense Department, while Chinese companies are obliged to work with Beijing.

The US is also wasting time debating the ethics of AI while China makes “massive investment” and eschews such concerns, he said. (NY Post)

In discussing his resignation in a letter published on LinkedIn last month, Chaillan said that since the U.S. does not have a population advantage over China, it must show strength in other ways, namely, by “being smarter, more efficient, and forward-leaning through agility, rapid prototyping and innovation.”

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Challian pointed to issues with bureaucracy, lack of agility, and funding that made it difficult if not impossible in some cases to do his job. 

“At this point, I am just tired of continuously chasing support and money to do my job,” he said. 

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