Robots: One thing I still don't understand

It seems to me people are spending a lot of money on trying to build a robot that can do the same thing a human can.

Obviously we want robots that can go into dangerous environments to fix things or to explore. i.e. Fukushima.

What I don't understand is why we don't just build a machine that looks like a robot but is controled by a human from a safe distance. Why does the robot have to have A.I.?

I understand we would like that in the future, but I can't see how A.I. comes before a propper humanoid like machine that can be remotely controled.

I think especially things like the Oculus Rift will be useful in such a machine.

Can someone explain why they focus on A.I. so much?