A Quiet declaration: Digital weapons will lead to an analog death
Digital Dogs Of War
In light of recent Google digital attacks (June 1) from China and the yet un-blamed Lockheed Martin attack just over a week ago, New light is cast upon the Pentagon's recently released plans to Let loose the Analog Dogs of War upon those perpetrators of digital attacks it deems worthy of reprisal.
Quietly declared through the Wall Street journal on May 31, 2011, A recent announcement from the US Pentagon has revealed their new policy declaring that "Cyber Attacks" shall be treated as "Acts of war upon the United States" and "A response to a cyber-incident or attack on the US would not necessarily be a cyber-response. All appropriate options would be on the table," Pentagon spokesman Col Dave Lapan.
The stuff of fiction becomes truth
Reminiscent of an early Science fiction episode of Gene Roddenberry's Star Trek, "A Taste of Armageddon", where digital attacks resulted in real deaths. The pentagon has stated it's plans to respond militarily to cyber attacks and that reprisal will be based upon on the notion of "equivalence" - Equivalence being defined generally as: "whether the attack was comparable in damage to a conventional military strike". It has been reported that the strategy would consider the existing international rules of armed conflict - embodied in international treaties, customs and conventions. Pentagon officials have stated a yet to be released report will delve deeper in to official policy and response.
Digital Fear and Fear-mongering
A recent report over American security fears has shown 45% of polled Americans view a cyberattack as posing a "greater economic threat to the United States than even a traditional military attack by another nation".
As for the Pentagon, they seek to bolster public fears by stating "If you shut down our power grid, maybe we will put a missile down one of your smokestacks".
The Digital Bitch
The United States having been a Nation who has engaged in Cyber Attacks in the past (even recently) needs to consider the dangerous policy of such strong language in its full light. If we have formally declared Cyber Attacks as "Acts of War", then in turn they are now to be viewed that way by any nation we interact with and indeed "attack" in such a manner. It is obvious that the digital realm is rampant with altered information and it will be hard to prove without the shadow of doubt that a specific attack truly came from a specific source. Thus this becomes a dangerous policy which needs to be watched intently as it is a fertile realm ripe for abuse in the name of "defense". It is not hard to image a soon to be released official report saying "The Federal Reserve and Wall Street have received a digital attack today that has been traced to "country x" and we have issued an appropriate missile response to the area that the attack originated from".
In this new escalated climate of digital war it might not matter whether it is mere intelligence gathering mission, a purposeful act of destabilization, or even minor criminal and personal acts from computer wizards reenacting their own version of Matthew Broderick's "War Games". An attack is an attack and we have now stated the right to decide when a digital attack is worthy of the churning of real life war machines.
Evil minds that plot destruction (Let ye who Cast Stones)
Here is a list of nations which up to this point have been commonly believed to have carried out digital attacks:
Pakistan (Against India)
Many more countries are assumed though less documented.
In the Beginning (Born Again - The Art of Warfare)
One of the earliest known digital attacks (or escalated pre planned digital counterattacks) happened in 1982 when the Soviet Union stole software from a Canadian company that had been modified by the CIA to include a "logic bomb" which caused a Soviet Pipeline to explode due to implanted computer directions to increase pump speeds.
No word yet on an official U.N. or Geneva stance on Cyber Warefare.
Bloodied angels fast descending
It remains unanswered whether the digital attack initiated from inside China will see reprisals in this new age of warfare. Our intention of physical response to attacks upon our computer infrastructure was given to the public on May 31, 2011 and an attack from China Followed on April 1, 2011 against Google in attempts to gain information from Military Mail accounts on their servers. Is a day considered too short of warning and reason enough to walk away from this Evil Lady of war? We await the final decision from the Pentagon as to which is to be the first Cyber trespass to see the angry machines of war bringing double the pain.
.....the eagle screaming for vengeance from the sky.
Support for position that cyberattack is act of war. June 2nd 2011 by Charles Cooper.
US Pentagon to treat cyber-attacks as 'acts of war' June 1, 2011
Google e-mail accounts compromised by 'Chinese Hackers'. June 1, 2011
Major Cyber Attack Is Act of War:Pentagon Report May 31, 2011
Cyberwar: The Fith Domain July 1, 2010
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Philadelphia suburbs, Pennsylvania, United States