A digital Cold War is brewing between the U.S. and China. Or is it a cyber-false flag operation on a grand scale?
Either way according to Reuters, China’s top military newspaper said on Thursday that they should boost its cyber-warfare strength so that they can counter a Pentagon push. This comes after a few weeks of governmental beef over the accusations that Beijing might have been behind a string of recent Internet hacks.
The allegations against China have been focused on security violations of the networks of Lockheed Martin Corp and other U.S. military contractors. It is also alleged that there were deceptions aimed at gaining access to the Google e-mail accounts of U.S. officials and Chinese human rights activists.
On the other hand, the official newspaper of the People's Liberation Army said that it was Beijing that was susceptible to attack. This was said in a news report that measured the Pentagon's efforts in cyber security.
"The U.S. military is hastening to seize the commanding military heights on the Internet, and another Internet war is being pushed to a stormy peak," concluded the report in the Chinese-language Liberation Army Daily.
Those are some very poetic accusations from the Chinese to say the least.
There’s also this: "Their actions remind us that to protect the nation's Internet security, we must accelerate Internet defense development and accelerate steps to make a strong Internet army," said the Liberation Army Daily article.
The article was also published on the website of China's Ministry of Defense. So our readers who read Chinese can have fun with that.
The report is not an official government statement, but the military newspaper is edited in a way that reflects official thinking. So it does show that China is also concerned with issue of Internet attacks and defending against them.
"Although our country has developed into an Internet great power, our Internet security defenses are still very weak. So we must accelerate development of Internet battle technology and armament," said the report.
"Comprehensively improve our military's ability to defend the Internet frontiers," it urged.
As you probably already know, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said earlier this month that Washington was very concerned about cyber-attacks, and that they were prepared to use force against any hacking it thinks was an act of war. The Pentagon also came out and said that they are prepared to view cyber-attacks as an act of war.
So is this a set up for a digital Cold War of sorts with China, or is the Pentagon going to use a cyber-attack as another reason to send troops into a foreign country?
An even better question is how would the U.S. government be able to prove to the people that they were cyber-attacked anyways? Accessing their networks is already a high crime, so do you think they would let us see their secret network just to prove that it was attacked?
It’s very doubtful, and that almost makes it seem like the government could claim they were cyber-attacked just to justify the rollout of more U.S. troops against the digital offender. It does look like a digital Cold War with China could be brewing, but the same hostilities could be directed towards any country now. Again, how would they prove it to the people?
If the U.S. does get cyber-attacked, can we really trust that the use of force will be justified?
And just so you know, the government has indeed lied about its reasons for going to war in the past. The digital realm is making military operations very questionable, and very interesting to boot.