The Daily Delusion: The Pathetic War

Posted in Crazy Weapons, Cyberterrorism at 7:37 am by George Smith


North Korea: We’ll make a handful of your websites load slow!

South Korea: Just wait! Once we get our electromagnetic pulse bomb to work at a range of greater than ten yards …

North Korea: Your EMP-bomb building scientists have nothing on our selfless warriors. They can can modify a five-year-old computer virus as well as Internet script kiddies or maybe even a little better! Tomorrow we strike your Imperialist puppet-master pigdogs at dol.gov as another example that you are powerless! Powerless!

South Korea: Our electromagnetic pulse (EMP) bombs, if exploded, will jam and damage your defence systems! Then you will not be able to rewrite more computer viruses!

North Korea: Tomorrow we will inflict more merciless retribution and pounding on your decadent overlords as well as make the website of your evil Ministry of Agriculture to load slow, if maybe at all. At least five people will be made to work overtime!

“This is how small powers can damage large ones in an era of asymetric warfare.” — frightened at the Booman Tribune.

“If it is verified that North Korea is the origin of the cyber attacks, perhaps it is time to take some action against them — something more serious than begging them to be good. They have shown they are a dangerous outlaw nation.” — some random Blogger blog.

“Attack on government computers draws speculation and shrugs …” Los Angeles Times.

What to do, what to do, about The Pathetic War? Or, “Who Should We Bomb?”

“If the attacks caused harm to anyone ‘you get more serious, and start thinking and talking about it as an act of war or at least state-sponsored violence,’ said Michael O’Hanlon, a defense analysts at the Brookings Institution.”

Appearing in an Associated Press story today, readers will remember O’Hanlon as the famous ‘liberal hawk’ who lobbied vigorously for the Iraq War and, years later, was tossed in the rubbish bin by everyone still possessing even a shred of common sense.

Will O’Hanlon launder himself fresh on the cybersecurity beat?

“And if you go out over the networks to strike back at Pyongyang, how can you be sure you’re not accidentally going to also take down Japan at the same time? You could end up shooting the wrong guy.” — someone with more apparent brains.

However, if readers review an older piece on cyberwar-retaliation at all el Reg, one written by your host, not everyone will be on board with restraint, moderation and good sense. Keep in mind, this article was written as a bit of dry satire.

However, that was well before the triumph of The Pathetic War.

When it comes to carpet-bombing a foreign country’s cyberspatial infrastructure, the proper intelligence will be important, reasons [a US military man]. But no capability should be particularly restricted by details. If the US blows some puny country off the Internet and it turns out that their computers were only being used by others, the retaliation will have had, in any case, a warning effect. After all, a weapon has no deterrence if you keep it a secret. And besides, they’ll probably have had it coming.

“Brute force has an elegance all its own,” the man [said].

DD on McIntyre in the Morning, K ABC AM 790, Los Angeles

Host Peter Tilden: Hey, we have three computers in my house and I can’t get my kid’s to work right on the Internet. Do you know what to do?

DD: Sorry, can’t help you there.

Fast forward to end of segment

Tilden: The least he could have done was fix my kid’s computer.

“Our [South Korean] EMP devices can currently affect systems only tens of meters away, but our aim is to extend the reach to one km by 2014,” Yonhap news agency quoted an official as saying.

“An EMP bomb cannot be considered effective unless its range is at least one km,” an official said.

The development effort, which has been under way for nearly a decade according to the officials …

See here.

In another form, at SITREP.

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