Technology in the Service of War



20 November 2023, 19:00 - 13:00 


Tel Aviv University Alumni Organization, led by Sigalit Ben Hayoun, continues to hold weekly webinars at this time. This week, a webinar on  "Technology in the Service of War" was held, with hundreds of alumni participating.


The panel members were: 


  • Idan Tendler - high-tech and social entrepreneur, senior vice president at Palo Alto Networks, chairman of Place-IL, and an alumnus of the Faculty of Engineering at Tel Aviv University.

  • Dr. Limor Ziv - lecturer and consultant for technological innovation and responsible artificial intelligence, founder of Humane AI, member of the scientific council at The Israeli Association for Ethics in Artificial Intelligence (IAEAI), chairman of the executive board of the Fair Trade organization in Israel, and an alumna of the Faculty of Arts and the Faculty of Social Sciences at Tel Aviv University.

  • Eytan Eshel - Vice President of R&D, Technologies, and Innovation at Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), and an alumnus of the Faculty of Engineering and the Faculty of Management at Tel Aviv University.

The panel moderator:

  • Dr. Noa Lachman - senior faculty member at  Tel Aviv University Faculty of Engineering 


Eytan Eshel noted that:


"Technology gives a qualitative advantage to the security establishment in war, but it does not predict everything, and there is always the human factor. Technology can help with precise attacks, intelligence gathering, and processing a lot of information using AI. The role of technology is to help in the collection and processing of data and in the drawing of conclusions from it. But in the end, there are those who pull the trigger and those who draw conclusions from the wealth of information."


Idan Tendler had this to say:


"The civilian involvement in the war can be seen as a great positive. The civilian and high-tech sectors have leveraged their relative advantage—rapid teams, technologies, and projects—to solve very complex challenges with maximum quality and in no time."


"Technology will always be required to solve the most complex challenges. But as long as a person is at the end of the process and needs to make a decision, technology will not always be able to replace him. No matter how advanced technology is, it will not be able to erase conception, ego, or confidence. We are all human, and no matter what artificial intelligence we will use, we can all fall into the sin of arrogance. There are times when it is better to invest more in modesty than in artificial intelligence."


"We have all seen the high-tech industry contribution during the fighting. After the war, we will see high-tech involved in Israel's next great challenge—the reconstruction of the Western Negev. I have no doubt that we will see a flourishing of startups in the region, and high-tech companies that until now have not ventured out of Tel Aviv, recruiting hundreds of new employees in the area, with a physical presence in Sderot, Ashkelon, and kibbutzim. This is the high-tech industry obligation to Israeli society."


Dr. Limor Ziv stated that:


"Artificial intelligence tools offer opportunities to improve our lives. For example, in fields such as medicine and agriculture, they already allow us to better deal with complex challenges. The October 7th War teaches us that even in emergency situations, they can help provide solutions where the country is struggling. Local entrepreneurs are developing promising technologies, such as those that help to locate the missing and murdered. At the same time, it is important to understand that artificial intelligence-based technologies also carry possible risks. We must act responsibly and make sure that the development of artificial intelligence is done in a regulated and safe way for the user. We are in favor of progress and innovation but with minimal risk."


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