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  (Source: Unknown)
Iran accuses malware of wiping systems at oil export centers, creating financial damages

It's pretty obvious at this point that the U.S. selectively targeted Iran's nuclear weapons development efforts with pieces of malware.  The question, amid intense politicization and scrutiny, is exactly what role Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush played in authorizing the attacks.

I. Loading up the Worm Cannon

Some have singled out Obama for his decision to "step up" the attacks, a decision which would lead to the successful destruction of thousands of weapons grade uranium enrichment centrifuges. However, a coding error led to one variant of the worm escaping its targeted deployment area, gaining international infamy in the process.  According to the argument, Bush only authorized limited infections of attack-capable viruses, versus the very large scale authorizations by Present Obama.

But that theory has had a major hole poked in it, thanks to new analysis from Symantec Corp. (SYMC) of Flame, an older worm which infected machines in the Middle East targeting Iran.  Flame, found by Kapersky Labs last month, has code indicating that it predates President Obama, and even predates the family of worms launched late in the Bush era, which would come to be known as Stuxnet.

Flame infographic
Flame has narrowly targeted the Middle East, particularly Iran. [Image Source: Kapersky Labs]

The Bush-era Flame worm was long assumed to be used only for espionage.  But Symantec discovered that it also carried code capable of deleting files and wiping computer systems, wreaking digital havoc in an offensive capacity.

It also appears that President Bush deployed the malware, but never pulled the trigger amid Iranian promises that they would cooperate with talks.  But Iran claims that in April, after it pulled out of talks, the malware attacked computers in its main oil export terminal and Oil Ministry, causing major damage and chaos.

II. Did Bush and Obama Essentially "Declare War" on Iran?

If Symantec is right, it lends serious weight to the Iranian accusations.

And in many ways it lends far more serious accusation to the notion that the U.S. has effectively "declared war" on Iran.  After all, Stuxnet was targeting a select weapon -- nuclear missiles -- whose own real purpose was deadly offense.  By contrast, the U.S. appears to have used Flame to attack the life-blood of the Iranian economy, its oil industry.  That's a far more egregious move.

If these claims are to be validated, there's plenty of blame to be placed on both President Obama and President George W. Bush.  If reports are to be believed, Bush essentially ordered, loaded, and aimed the gun -- Obama pulled the trigger.

The U.S. recently anounced a new policy that cyberattacks could be construed as acts of war.  While the alleged U.S. attacks on Iran have been bloodless, they still seem dangerously close to hypocrisy given that policy, particularly given that there's no indication either President had his efforts authorized by Congress who must approve any war effort.

Iran
Presidents George W. Bush and Obama are accused of setting a chilling precedent, using the Flame worm to target Iran's economy with punitive attacks.  [Vahid Salemi/AP]

The idea that the U.S. used Flame to sabotage civilian/economic infrastructure also raises dark and disturbing possibilities of future attacks, potentially even on the U.S.

Neil Fisher, vice president for global security solutions at Unisys adds, "Many of our utilities have connected their operational management to the Internet to save costs.  Water, gas, electricity certainly constitute the critical national infrastructure.  Dysfunction of those ... systems could have uncomfortable consequences for a large number of people."

Looks like U.S. politicians on both sides of the aisle opened up quite the can of worms (in more ways than one) when their highest elected officials allegedly chose to use Flame and Stuxnet to assault Iran.  The consequences of those decisions are unlikely to fade anytime soon.

If the allegations are true, politics aside, it appears both of the last two presidents deserve equal blame or praise for these efforts.

Source: Reuters



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Cyber Warfare
By albus on 6/22/2012 2:04:33 PM , Rating: 3
Reminds me of 1945 when the US was the only state capable of nuking other states. Soon other countries got their hands on it and the US introduced treaties styming their proliferation.




RE: Cyber Warfare
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 6/22/2012 2:12:41 PM , Rating: 4
My simpleton thoughts on this cyber-warfare:

I think that Iran is up to no good, and I offer no sympathy for them. However, if we start attacking their nuke facilities and infrastructure, how exactly can we hold the moral high ground if they start targeting our defense and financial centers in retaliation?

The only possible excuse I think of is We = Good, They = Bad.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By lagomorpha on 6/22/2012 2:19:48 PM , Rating: 2
On a more practical note: do we really want to give the Iranian government an easy scapegoat for the people to fear? We should be focusing on efforts to allow secularists there to launch a successful revolution, not making ourselves look like enemies of both the Iranian government and people.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ebakke on 6/25/2012 10:42:25 PM , Rating: 2
Alternatively, we could try not getting involved with the internal affairs of another sovereign nation.

If they bomb us, we should annihilate them and then return home. Let whoever's still alive clean up and rebuild their own country. But until we're attacked, we have no business attacking them or providing any support whatsoever to a (real or hoped-for) revolution. Quite simply, it's not our problem.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By geddarkstorm on 6/22/2012 2:36:03 PM , Rating: 2
I wonder if we could solve all these issues if we offered to work with them to set up thorium reactors. That'll give them their power needs, but be impossible to weaponize. And then no more need for conflict or complaints, and we might even make a profit in the process. They seem pretty ground down lately, and maybe open to something actually sensible like that; long shot as it is that both sides would feel like being sensible though.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 6/22/2012 2:38:02 PM , Rating: 3
I don't see Israel letting that happen.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By albus on 6/22/2012 3:00:00 PM , Rating: 5
I thought that Israel was afraid of Iran's nuke bomb. Any reason why they would go against a power plant that could not be used to make bombs?


RE: Cyber Warfare
By JasonMick (blog) on 6/22/2012 5:16:23 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
I thought that Israel was afraid of Iran's nuke bomb. Any reason why they would go against a power plant that could not be used to make bombs?
Money if nothing else.

One big factor often lost in the Iran v. Israel debate is that these are the two biggest economic powers in the Middle East.

Despite debt issues, Iran produces more peer-reviewed research than any other Middle Eastern nation and produces more cars and other manufactured goods than any other nation in the Middle East.

Thorium reactors would give Iran a powerful economic advantage -- don't think we'd gift wrap that for them, particularly when our ally Israel doesn't even have them yet.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By TSS on 6/22/2012 7:05:08 PM , Rating: 1
There's more to it then that.

Don't forget iran has alot of oil and easily tapped reserves have run out. Now western nations might not care for the person in charge but china, india and russia have no problem dealing with him. There's alot of strategic importance in iran and also it's neighbour, syria. They are the economic engine of the middle east (and syria has key stragtegic russian bases), so whoever controls them, controls the middle east.

In essence, what we see playing out here is the largest proxy battle in US history, the next vietnam (just describes the nature of the conflict not the eventual outcome). Russia/China will both support the current government with funds and weapons but will never openly declare war while i'd suspect the US invades directly, probably assisted by israel, but won't declare war on russia and/or china either. It'll be one long drawn out conflict with alot heavyer losses on either side then iraq or afgahnistan.

This is just the first though. Should the US win, they will gain a springboard into asia and further cement their position in the pacific, with japan/australia to the east and iran/iraq/afgahnistan/israel to the west. Should the US lose, Russia and China will know the time is right to further move in on US friendly territory, possibly inciting rebellion in saudi-arabia as well as closing ties with the new regimes in northern africa.

I don't think europe will get involved (for once, hah). We've got far too many problems of our own. If there's going to be a fight in europe it'll resemble a civil war more then the old wars for conquest. I know the political leaders want to force a complete union now because of this eventuality, because the EU would be able to join the fight as a powerblock and possibly become the dominant superpower. Unfortunatly this is only in the politicians dreams, the population doesn't want a union let alone war.

Iran will be the staging grounds to settle 1 question: Who will be the dominant superpower for the next 2 decades. After that we might be looking at another world war when oil starts to actually run out. But when that happens the current nations will want to be in the best possible position, which is what this war will determine.

And really..... It's so painfully obvious at this point that it's going to happen. Can we please just get it over with? It's certainly not going to be the last war ever so really, just go for it. Germany took 7 years to prepare for world war 2, we've been joking about/expecting this for what? 10 years now? Reminds me of the army in monthy python and the holy grail shouting "get on with it!".


RE: Cyber Warfare
By geddarkstorm on 6/22/2012 3:57:33 PM , Rating: 3
I have to echo what albus said.

Why would anyone be against dismantling Iran's uranium endeavors, and replacing them with safe thorium? Everyone wins in that scenario.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By JediJeb on 6/25/2012 3:23:35 PM , Rating: 2
Everyone wins except someone wanting nuclear fuel for bombs. If the option is offered and Iran takes it up, then you know their ambitions are peaceful, if they turn it down and only pursue Uranium, then you know that their ambitions are leaning towards weaponizing the process.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By dnd728 on 6/22/2012 4:55:33 PM , Rating: 1
On the contrary. It's Iran that would disagree.
Remember, Iran is getting all they need for non-military uses, including the complete reactors. The problem is that they insist on also having higher enriched Uranium, nuclear detonators, hidden labs, long range ballistic missiles...


RE: Cyber Warfare
By mackx on 6/22/2012 5:04:39 PM , Rating: 2
which is understandable given the aggression aimed towards them by Israel and the United States. Whether their leaders are nuts or not - who knows. There's more than a slight chance of a US invasion of Iran by the end of this decade. That will not happen if they have nukes as the US doesn't poke a country that can poke back.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By dnd728 on 6/22/2012 5:12:08 PM , Rating: 2
You are confusing action and consequence.

Also, nobody's invading any of the Emirates nor Andorra, and they are all quite defenseless.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By JasonMick (blog) on 6/22/2012 5:21:49 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
which is understandable given the aggression aimed towards them by Israel and the United States.
Most of that's just propoganda, just like when Bush called Iran part of the "axis of evil".

Many nations resort to nationalist rhetoric, criticizing economic rivals. The U.S. directs propoganda at Iran because its horses in the Middle East are Israel and Saudi Arabia. It's not a religious issue or an issue of terrorism -- Saudi Arabia is a huge funder of terrorism. It's a matter of money.

Likewise Iran condemns the U.S. and its allies out of economic aims.

Why do you think Iran is so closely supported by Russia and China who oppose sanctions??


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Ammohunt on 6/22/2012 5:44:23 PM , Rating: 3
Know your history....

USS Samuel B. Roberts
Iran hostage crisis

Know what happens if Iran closes the Strait of Hormuz? There is more than propaganda going on here.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Reclaimer77 on 6/22/2012 6:51:08 PM , Rating: 3
I'm sure he'll come up with a way to blame the United States on those too. Nope, Iran isn't evil at all. Just misunderstood!

The mountain of plainly evident proof of Iran's "evil" status is so widely known, mostly by their own actions, I'm pretty shocked that anyone could objectively call it "propaganda". The U.S has LONG considered Iran a sponsor of terrorism and a threat to regional stability way way way before Bush entered office. Iran was also on the U.N's Human Rights Councils "worst offender" list for two decades.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By IranTech on 6/23/12, Rating: 0
RE: Cyber Warfare
By Ammohunt on 6/23/2012 3:57:46 PM , Rating: 3
^^^^An example of effective brainwashing WOW!^^^^


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/23/2012 5:36:39 PM , Rating: 2
You really should read up on history. The US did overthrow an Iranian government that had popular support only to leave power with an extremely unpopular dictator (the Shah) who was comparable to Assad in modern day Syria. This was largely done to ensure the flow of cheap oil (basically stealing the oil from the Iranians while paying off the Shah). After the overthrow of the Shah, the US did plot against the new regime. Thus it is very understandable that the new Iranian regime were angry with the US. The same goes for the population in general.

This does not change the fact that politics in a place like Iran is always murky (the overthrown government was not clean). It also doesn’t change the fact every other ruler in the Middle East at that time were non democratic (to say the least). And it specifically doesn’t change the fact that Iran violated the Vienna Convention upon which all diplomatic relationship is built on. If Iran had problems with the Tehran embassy then they could have expelled the diplomats and closed the embassy. They did not. And whatever agreement the US made to free those hostages is void due to the fact that Iran were holding those diplomats illegally in the first place.

The new regime also embarked on a reign of terror against its own people and to overthrow foreign governments. They also actively supported and support terrorist groups around the world. Thus, many countries have every reason to be angry with the current Iranian leaders.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Ammohunt on 6/25/2012 2:19:02 PM , Rating: 2
I am very familiar with the history related to the shah the only problem i see is the plan failed unlike the success of supporting Hosni Mubarak in Egypt that brought peace with Israel and general stability in that region. Now take a look at Egypt went the same way as Iran and shortly will be a huge destabilizing factor in the Mediterranean Arab spring my ass...Egyptians aren't even Arab!


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Skywalker123 on 6/23/2012 11:09:17 PM , Rating: 2
Wow! You really are a victim of brainwashing! Believe me you don't want argue this, its all documented.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Ammohunt on 6/27/2012 12:29:55 PM , Rating: 2
The great Satan killed my goats!..i have heard it before.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Solandri on 6/23/2012 11:01:38 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The American hostage crisis ended when America signed an agreement with Iran that it will never interfere in the internal affairs of Iran. Why would America sign such an agreement if it had not against all norms and international laws had conducted activities that were criminal by any standard of international law?

I actually do agree with you that the U.S. probably tried to subvert Iran's government on multiple occasions. But signing a document agreeing not to do it anymore does not constitute proof that it was being done.

If my neighbor catches my dog and holds it hostage, and says he'll only give it back if I sign a document saying I won't try to manipulate him anymore with mind control rays coming from a machine in my basement, heck yeah I'll sign it. Not because I have a mind control machine in my basement and I'm sorry for using it, but because my neighbor is obviously a nutcase who is into all sorts of whacky conspiracy theories. And if all I have to do to get my dog back is to just sign something saying I won't do something I'm already not doing, then give me a pen.

All it does is prove Iran thought it was being done or was worried it could be done. It says nothing about whether the U.S. was actually doing it.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Paj on 6/25/12, Rating: 0
RE: Cyber Warfare
By KoS on 6/25/2012 3:09:05 PM , Rating: 2
The UK was more complicit than the US in all this. Yes, the US did the heavy lifiting or the dirty work removing the PM. But it was the UK who wanted it to happen and harrange the US into finally doing it.

The UK was unhappy with the oil fields they developed were nationalised by Iran. The UK convinced the US if the PM wasn't removed that the Iranian government would align itself more closely with the communist and Moscow.

I find it interesting, the Roosevelt admin didn't want a thing to do with it. They actually tried to solve the issue between the UK and Iran peacefully. Not the case when the Eisenhower admin came into office.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Skywalker123 on 6/23/2012 11:06:49 PM , Rating: 2
That's a joke, right? If not YOU need to know history,

TPAJAX Project,our overthrow of a democratically elected leader replacing him with the Shah, an American puppet.

Our backing of Saddam Hussein in the invasion and war against Iran.
Flight 655, our shooting down of a civilian airliner, killing 290 men, women and children. America claimed an accident but refused to apologize.
The U.S. as they do in many countries, sponsors terrorist groups in Iran. They have bombed barracks and they or Israeli agents have murdered Iranian scientists.
If Iran had done half of what we have done to them we would have declared war long ago


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/25/2012 12:29:36 PM , Rating: 2
The reason the airliner was shot down is the flight crew failed to use the IFF and identify itself. The ship had only a few minutes to respond and took a worst case view.

After hearing that Iran and its pilots were culpable in that incident. IFF is there for a reason.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/25/2012 4:45:27 PM , Rating: 2
This is getting absurd. The USS Vincennes shot down an unarmed civilian airliner in Iranian airspace. The missiles were fired from Iranian waters. And you seem to be the only ones on the planet believing that the airliner was not transmitting correct IFF codes (even captain Rogers said it were transmitting civilian codes, he just didn’t believe them). The plane was flying on a standard air corridor, on a scheduled flight, in continuous communication with civilian air traffic control (next time you fly in the US, ask the pilot if they monitor military radio channels). How can that be the fault of the Iranians? The crew of the Vincennes made a mistake, their equipment were faulty (it seems) and they did not apply common sense. While that may be understandable it does not push the guilt over to the Iranians.

While I find the see a clear need for the US navy to balance the Iranian navy and for it to react to Iranian provocations, I find it hard to understand that anyone can justify shooting down a civilian airliner. While incidents like this will happen by mistake (which I am sure it was), it is despicable that the captain ran away from his responsibility and even worse that the US government did. Not admitting your mistakes is something I would expect from a 5 year old child. Not something to expect from a senior military commander let alone the government of a civilized country.

I wonder how your reaction would have been if the Cuban navy shot down a US airliner leaving Miami bound for the Caribbean. And if their reaction were that the airliner never responded when hailed on military channels.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By TheJian on 6/24/2012 12:42:20 AM , Rating: 2
LOL. Trolling for posts? The first part was right, but then you went into to troll territory for that axis crap...

But then again, I agree with the fact Saudi Arabia is obama's horse and is currently lowering prices on gas as fast as they can to help keep SCREWBAMA in office. Watch for $3.00 in the next month, and $2.50 or less by election to prop up his economic outlook (and then $4 again weeks after if he's re-elected...LOL). I fully believe this guy intends to destroy USA (from the inside, and it's working nicely - with the audacity to actually blame 6trillion of his spending on bush...ROFL). If you think the spending has been bad so far, just wait until he has no need to be re-elected again. God help us if that happens.

Oh crap, I'm probably being targeted now since they investigate everyone that says anything bad about odramabama and odramacare.
***hides under tin hat, hoping to evade surveillance***

I should have Tor'd this post...ROFL. Vote Romney and drill baby drill... :) Better yet vote to actually CHECK who is voting. 53,000 dead people voting in Florida? WTF? No wonder Obama is blocking checking the roll. Just Google it, it hit Reuters, Fox, Miami Herald and a bunch more. Check those voters! No proof you're American, NO VOTE for you!


RE: Cyber Warfare
By geddarkstorm on 6/22/2012 5:15:49 PM , Rating: 2
Another benefit of giving them such an offer: it would expose their true intentions to everyone, and they could no longer pull the "we just want energy!" card.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Jaybus on 6/25/2012 1:53:22 PM , Rating: 2
There would be no reason to care. Liquid fluoride thorium reactors produce only very small quantities of Pu, and most of that is Pu-238, not the Pu-239 needed for a fission bomb. All but 9% of the radioactive material produced is needed to sustain the reaction. The U-233 that could be extracted cannot be separated from a smaller amount of U-232, and is so radioactive that, while safe inside the reactor, it fries electronics and is extremely hard to use for a weapon. Also, a LFTR produces only short lived radioactive material, not even very good for a dirty bomb.

Most importantly, a LFTR doesn't require ANY uranium enrichment. A nation that had only LFTRs could very easily be monitored for bomb building. Any acquisition of uranium enrichment equipment would be a sure indication of their intentions.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 2:49:49 PM , Rating: 2
Cyber warfare is preferable to real war. The real problem here is not the attacks but the fact that is was discovered. That gives the Iranian clerics a convenient scapegoat.

Lesson #1 in covert warfare: Don't get caught. This regardless of whether you are waging cyber war or snatching terrorists off the street for non-conventional interrogation.

Problem for both Bush and Obama was that they got high on the immediate success and wanted more. They forgot lesson #1.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/22/2012 3:49:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Problem for both Bush and Obama was that they got high on the immediate success and wanted more. They forgot lesson #1.
The first public ID of Stuxnet was 2010. Bush was president when? Lesson #1 was violated by whom?


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 4:18:15 PM , Rating: 2
I wrote "... or snatching terrorists off the street for non-conventional interrogation"

Bush got caught when waterboarding, secret jails, black flights, etc. got exposed. Same thing. If you want to conduct a covert war make sure it stays covert. Otherwise you lose the moral high ground. Problem is that once presidents see positive results of covert wars then they want more. And sooner or later the covert war is no longer covert.

BTW, it is clear now that Flame was out in the open long before Obama took office.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/22/2012 9:55:06 PM , Rating: 2
Off topic, you can't get past blaming Bush for everything anytime it might make Obama look not as bad. Yet you have no trouble giving Obama credit for intel acquired from Bush's policy on terrorist. Only now, Obama has just been killing them without garnering human intel. We went through this when Jimmy Carter had Admiral Stansfeild Turner decimate the CIA because they dealt with "unsavory people." We effectively went blind on many threats.

quote:
Bush got caught when waterboarding, secret jails, black flights, etc. got exposed.
First, who exposed them not Bush. The point of this tilted article is based on who couldn't keep their mouth shut. It wasn't Bush who leaked it. We have not held those who leak classified information accountable, Richard Armatage leaked Valarie Plame but Scooter Libby went to jail.

quote:
BTW, it is clear now that Flame was out in the open long before Obama took office.
Again, you can't get past blaming the wrong person. It may have been sent out during Bush but he didn't make it PUBLIC. Bush used resources judiciously whereas Obama over uses certain resources, i.e. drones and viruses.
quote:
Flame, found by Kapersky Labs last month, has code indicating that it predates President Obama, and even predates the family of worms launched late in the Bush era, which would come to be known as Stuxnet.
If it was identified recently Bush didn't announce it to the press.

BTW
quote:
...when their highest elected officials allegedly chose to use Flame and Stuxnet to assault Iran.
As implied from the article Bush started another war. Jason time to come up for air your writing is turning blue.
quote:
If the allegations are true, politics aside, it appears both of the last two presidents deserve equal blame or praise for these efforts.
What have the Chinese been up too? Corporations? Other countries, including Israel... You sound so alarmed but really, this is new… At what point will you hold the present guy in charge accountable for his actions without blaming the last one or the opposition party? At least that is what competent leaders do.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/23/2012 4:33:10 PM , Rating: 2
In this particular situation I didn’t write specifically about Bush or Obama. Go back and take a look at what I wrote - I wrote about presidents in general. Thus examples of action for the last two presidents seem highly appropriate. Not everything out there is about blaming “the other party”.

And I stand by what I wrote: Presidents get high on covert warfare. And when they do they tend to overuse it. And when they overuse it then it stops being covert.

President Bush overused black jails, special interrogation, etc. It simply became standard procedure to anyone accused or terrorism. When that happens sooner or later it will be exposed. If this had been something done to the top 10 Al-Qaeda terrorists then the media would never have had a story to build on. Instead it became the norm where the idiots in Abu Graib thought they had permission to submit even low level prisoners to illegal treatment. And when such practices are exposed then you lose the moral high ground.

President Obama seems to have overused covert cyber warfare because with the scale of the operation it now seems clear that the US has been involved one way or another, even though no US official is taking responsibility for it. And it doesn’t help when unnamed sources start talking to the New York Times. But smart people would know that when an operation reaches a certain size, it is no longer possible to keep it hidden. When I write “seems” it is because I have yet to see an admission of these attacks by the current administration (but perhaps I have overlooked it?). Thus Obama seems to have overused covert cyber warfare.

The drone attacks are in a gray zone. I am not sure that they have ever been considered covert from a “does it happen” perspective. When missiles hit an Al-Qaeda operative in Pakistan, no one is in doubt that it was ordered by the US President. But I guess that when it reaches the size of the current operation, then Pakistani media will have stock footage of attack drones whenever there is an attack. I suppose the scale of the operation is secret. Of course drone attacks beat the alternatives: doing nothing or invading Pakistan.

Lastly, neither you nor I know the intelligence that lead to Osama. And we have no knowledge as to how it was acquired. And in that case in particular I trust no statement that is not backed by material evidence. It is still an ongoing operation and everybody wants a piece of the glory.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/25/2012 12:55:06 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
President Bush overused black jails, special interrogation, etc. It simply became standard procedure to anyone accused or terrorism. When that happens sooner or later it will be exposed. If this had been something done to the top 10 Al-Qaeda terrorists then the media would never have had a story to build on. Instead it became the norm where the idiots in Abu Graib thought they had permission to submit even low level prisoners to illegal treatment. And when such practices are exposed then you lose the moral high ground.
Rendition was used heavily under President Clinton. To be grab for that program you were known, not someone randomly grabbed off the street.

Terrorist fall into a murky category and their treatment will be contested for many years to come.

The "idiots" at Abu Graib were military who violated rules and never had permission to do what they did. They violated Law of Armed Conflict, a course ALL receive prior to deploying. And No, that was not the norm. It was a regrettable breakdown in the chain of command.

At what point do you risk the moral high ground, as you put it, for actions outside the US that directly impact safety inside the US? It is not an easy, cut and dry determination, particularly when dealing with terrorist.

quote:
Lastly, neither you nor I know the intelligence that lead to Osama. And we have no knowledge as to how it was acquired. And in that case in particular I trust no statement that is not backed by material evidence. It is still an ongoing operation and everybody wants a piece of the glory.
Leon Panetta, Michael Hayden, Jose Rodriguez, a number of congressional members on both sides, and a host of others have all said the human intel under Bush did lead to Osama. Due to nature of the material you will have to live a long time to access it but it will eventually be released. That is why Congress has oversight on it. The bar you set is silly.

As to the "glory" you don't understand covert ops, they do not talk about it, ever. Goes with the job. If the Seal Team had their way the only thing you would have heard is that Osama was dead, period. They don't take credit, partly because it will put them and their families in danger, not to mention that national security thing.
quote:
But smart people would know that when an operation reaches a certain size, it is no longer possible to keep it hidden. When I write “seems” it is because I have yet to see an admission of these attacks by the current administration (but perhaps I have overlooked it?).
It made it to the public along with the hit list and other pro Obama campaign like articles. No material proof, but why now and in that order, who is to gain,...


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/25/2012 6:00:55 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Rendition was used heavily under President Clinton. To be grab for that program you were known, not someone randomly grabbed off the street.

I do not care what Clinton did. I wrote about “presidents” and picked the last two. I am sure Clinton got high on covert ops too. In addition, there have been numerous cases of people picked off the street, in an airport, being held for months only to be released without any further action. Cases were there was a clear mistake of identify. When that happens, then you are clearly beyond targeting high ranking officials. Then you are fishing with a large net.

I have no problem with giving special treatment to the top 10 terrorists (regardless of what such treatment constitutes). I do believe that when it comes to these things then you need to break the rules in extraordinary situations. However, when it becomes the norm, when newspapers write about it, then it is no longer something extraordinary. When you have a whole program with buildings being constructed in foreign countries, special planes moving prisoners around the world, etc., then you are all but certain that it will come out sooner rather than later. There are simply too many people in the know for it to be kept as a secret for long. If you do this stuff, make sure it is kept secret. Otherwise you lose the moral high ground and allow the actions of your enemies to be considered comparable.

quote:
The "idiots" at Abu Graib were military who violated rules and never had permission to do what they did. They violated Law of Armed Conflict, a course ALL receive prior to deploying. And No, that was not the norm. It was a regrettable breakdown in the chain of command.

With the regards to the idiots at Abu Graib, then they clearly believed that they could do what was being done in other places. That their actions were silently condoned by higher ranking officers. Obviously they were wrong, but they had seen/heard about what happened in other places.

quote:
Leon Panetta, Michael Hayden, Jose Rodriguez, a number of congressional members on both sides, and a host of others have all said the human intel under Bush did lead to Osama. Due to nature of the material you will have to live a long time to access it but it will eventually be released. That is why Congress has oversight on it. The bar you set is silly.

I am sure that intelligence acquired under Bush were pivotal in the discovery of Osama. And I am also sure that secret programs and training funded during the Bush period were partly responsible for the successful outcome of the mission. I do believe that Panetta has said that none of this intel were acquired using extraordinary methods. However I do not trust anyone telling the full truth in this case. It is still ongoing (because it involves Pakistan) and thus not everything can be said. We will have a good picture in 10 years’ time when the current administration has left office and when it is no longer a hot topic in Pakistan.

With regards to glory: When the number of people in the know becomes large, then these things will come out. While I do not doubt that Special Forces have a code of conduct that precludes them from talking about missions, they are human too. Someone will talk. Maybe not to the media, but to family, etc. And then it comes out. Regardless, I assume that you like I want the military to be subordinate to elected officials. And since elected officials will talk, that alone ensures that these things will come out.

quote:
It made it to the public along with the hit list and other pro Obama campaign like articles. No material proof, but why now and in that order, who is to gain,...

With regards to flame/stuxnet, both has been known for some time but only in the last few months have they been decoded by Kaspersky, Symantec to reveal their potential. That means that journalists will start asking questions. I do not find the timing suspicions.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Sazabi19 on 6/22/2012 3:51:13 PM , Rating: 2
Bush didn't get caught, there was no "immediate success" for him. Obama is the one that said do it. He was warned that 1 of the worms found a way into other platforms of equipment and could get out (not going after ONLY the targets) and advised him to kill it (there was a remote kill code built in) and Obama said to let it run it's course. This is why it was discovered. They knew something was up but when other things started to get infected in other countries and more people got involved it became something to look into. I don't blame them for doing what they did, it was a good idea, I however blame Obama for not killing it when it was going rouge. It could have been augmented and sent back out into the wild, sure it would have taken a bit longer, but it wouldn't have shown others that we opened a virtual Pandora's Box.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By dgingerich on 6/22/2012 3:10:42 PM , Rating: 2
How can we take the high ground?

Let's see...

We actually have elections and give the people power, perhaps less than it used to be, perhaps more, that's debatable, but it is far, far more power than the ruling elite of Iran gives it's people.

We actually have freedom for our people. Perhaps less than it used to be, perhaps more, that's debatable, but it is far, far more freedom than the ruling elite of Iran gives it's people. Particularly religious freedom.

Simply put, they're the power hungry warmongers.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 3:46:45 PM , Rating: 2
What if the Iranian people do not see religious freedom as a positive? What if they want religious minorities to fall in line with the religious view of the majority?

You will find the same sentiment in Afghanistan and that is partly why we are loosing the war there. We are fighting for a population that do not want our values.

While I largely share your values, do not expect the majority of the world to do likewise.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/22/2012 3:59:08 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
What if the Iranian people do not see religious freedom as a positive? What if they want religious minorities to fall in line with the religious view of the majority?
Go back and look at Iran before and after the revolution. Who were the big losers? Women and religious minorities. Forcing one to change their personal religious beliefs that are not counter to public safety is moral how? To force such change in a dictatorial manner as you imply is counter to the rights of said minority.

No I am not saying the Shah was a great guy either. Merely changing one draconian leader for another accomplished what?


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 4:51:33 PM , Rating: 1
I find the Iranian leadership pretty bad by any standard. However, take a look at Iraq: Did people there really want all the western values we brought to them? Obviously power hungry leaders tried grab power, but did the ordinary people really want religious freedom for Jews and Christians? And didn’t Shia’s attack their Sunni neighbors and reverse?

Try going to Eastern Europe and talk about gay rights. To China and talk about individual rights vs. the rights of society as a whole. To the Middle East and talk about women’s rights. To Israel and talk about equality of religions (or go to Harris County and talk to people about whether it is correct to put the bible on display outside the county court house).

Your values are not universal. I share a lot of them and I find my values superior to others. But I do recognize that others may have different values.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/22/2012 5:08:26 PM , Rating: 2
Again empty assertions. From your posts you seem to like oppressing others or at least condoning it. I understand my values quite well. I have seen the abysmal treatment of other human beings around the planet. Unfortunately, to fix such atrocities it takes a big stick.

Wipe the political hyperbole from your eye and ears and you will view the world differently.



RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 5:15:40 PM , Rating: 2
Nonsense. Stick to the point instead of making personal attacks. I am simply saying that your values are not universal and that others see the world differently. How can that be so difficult to grasp? Or is it just hard to accept?

And where have you gotten the idea that I would like to oppress others? Nothing could be further from the truth.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By dgingerich on 6/22/2012 6:18:18 PM , Rating: 1
Despite what the political left want people to think, there are things that are black and white. There aren't just black and white and there aren't just shades of grey. The ruling elite of countries like Iran are evil, plain and simple. They take from their citizens for their own profit and give little to nothing in return.

Hugo Chavez is very much that way, despite what his people believe. He lives in opulence, with expensive and immediate health care at the expense of his people. Even as his people die from lack of potable drinking water and health care. Yet his people believe his policies will make them better off, even as they sink more and more into poverty.

Just because they believe, does that put food on their plates? Does that given them clean water? This isn't about values. Values are about what people believe, not about the real truth of the matter.

The big push in college of "wallow in complexity" seems to be degrading our vision of reality. Adding unnecessary complexity clouds the truth, adds error, and in the end is self defeating. Just making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich isn't about describing how to bring the peanut butter to the bread. There are some things that are just simple truth.

Trying to understand someone else's point of view isn't necessary when all they want to do is take your life. It's nothing more complex than just standing up to defend yourself. Stopping to try to understand all the complexities is only going to end with death.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 7:26:17 PM , Rating: 2
So who here likes the Iranian leadership? Same thing with Chavez. I don’t see anyone here supporting either or even having the slightest bit of appreciation of either. Understanding why both act the way they do is necessary to play the political game on the world stage. More understanding is good. That is why we have intelligence services that try to penetrate the inner circles of enemies. So even if they want to take your life you might want to understand their motives. However, understanding is not the same as agreeing wholly or partly.

And while I wholly believe that my values that the best, I would be a fool not to realize that others may not share them. And if I want to befriend them, then I have to find some common ground. Not doing so, will ensure that we will never be friends. Finding common ground does not change my values. It is a practical way of getting cooperation from others – friends or enemies.

And in particular with regards to Iran the US has a need for friends in the Middle East (and elsewhere). Action against Iran that the people in the Middle East sees as unjust can lead to toppling of friendly governments (which can disrupt oil, intelligence, marine traffic, use of bases, etc.). And there are allies elsewhere (Europe, Asia), that are crucial to a US victory as they are needed to stop the flow of materials, money into Iran.

So the US cannot claim moral high ground just because it is a democratic state. Friends of the US also looks at US actions around the world. After all the lies and failures in Iraq any US government needs to work harder than before to claim moral high ground.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By dgingerich on 6/22/2012 4:06:31 PM , Rating: 2
It's true some people want to be dominated, told what to do and when, basically because they don't want the responsibility for their lives. They've been told all their lives that the government or the church leaders know best, and they shouldn't think about it.

This is exactly the problem with power hungry people. The regular people in Iran and Afghanistan want things to be that way because they've been conditioned to it. Those in power want to stay in power, not for the good of the people, but for the good of their own lives. They abuse, degrade, and enslave people for their own ends, and it is never good for those people they condition.

The only times humanity has flourished have been under times of freedom. That is obvious in history. The long times of enslavement (monarchies and communism, medieval Europe, USSR, Imperial China) have been long times of stagnant or slowing growth and extensive poverty. The few times of freedom (republics and democracies, ancient Greece, the Roman empire, the USA) have been times of plenty, and the human race grows and technology gains are great. Everyone gains from it, even if it has its own set of negatives.

However, there are some people who, no matter what history teaches, want to drag down society and be the Masters. They want to dominate everyone else for their own selfish purposes. That, to me, is the very definition of evil.

It really isn't a matter of values, because values change depending on the beliefs of the people, and those people can be conditioned to believe other things. For their own good, freedom is better, no matter what they believe. Humanity is better off free. Reality beats values.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By dgingerich on 6/22/2012 5:12:26 PM , Rating: 2
on top of this, I want to add this one note:

There are those whose values are to take what they want. The Ironmen in the Game of Thrones are an analog to the real world Vikings, and their motto is "We do not sow". There are many still around today that are exactly this type. (My roommate is even asinine enough to like these types of guys, calling them "hot" and even married one. What an idiot. They are nothing but a disease on society, a cancer that keeps us from being all we can be, just for their own selfish purposes. These are the unsuccessful aristocrats, too stupid and lazy to actually gain the power.)

There are those whose values are to work as little as possible and just collect charity and public assistance. They basically steal from all of us using the political system as their means. (I had an upgrade project for several drug rehab centers in downtown Chicago back in 1997, and while waiting to get started, I was waiting out in the waiting areas, and I would hear the people bragging between each other on how they'd play the system and get more "guvment money" and the pride in their voices made me sick. I knew they were flat out stealing this money, and they'd brag about how little work they'd have to do to get it. Just another cancer on humanity.)

Both of these types are despicable. They are bad for all of humanity. I really don't care about their values. They need to be either taught to change their values or removed from society so that we can go on progressing without their hindrance.

Values are based on the stupid things stupid people are told and believe, not on reality. Freedom, both to flourish without hindrance and to protect ourselves from those who would take what we earn, is by far the best condition for humanity.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 5:23:27 PM , Rating: 2
I agree with you. And I find values like: individualism, liberalism, constitutionalism, human rights, equality, liberty, the rule of law, democracy, free markets, the separation of church and state to be the cornerstone our society is built on.

Just don't expect everyone to agree with you.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 6:29:36 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I agree with you. And I find values like: individualism, liberalism, constitutionalism, human rights, equality, liberty, the rule of law, democracy, free markets, the separation of church and state to be the cornerstone our society is built on. Just don't expect everyone to agree with you.


What these words means to you may not mean the same things to somebody else.
People may want all these things or even have all these but may be they do not agree with your interpretation.

For example making a mother work to feed her kids may be against right of a child who's care is neglected because of mother being absent most of the time. But then you have to be concern about a "women's right to work" . How about a "woman's right to not to be force to work to feed her toddler". What if society takes the full burden for her situation.

A body has a right not to be inhaling smoke of a cigarette but then you have the human right to be able to choose to smoke.

What about a persons right to be educated? Without worrying about how he is going to manage it. Without worrying about $30k+interest.

People in the world have very different way of thinking then you do because of your culture. If they are fighting you does not always mean that you are right and you are perplexed and thinking may be something have got lost in the translation. Things are no as black and white as you see on the front pages of western newspaper.

For starters you do not have any of that you mentioned you think you do but you don't.

According to my interoperation of things.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 6:02:10 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
. The few times of freedom (republics and democracies, ancient Greece, the Roman empire, the USA) have been times of plenty, and the human race grows and technology gains are great. Everyone gains from it, even if it has its own set of negatives.


You forgot to mention the thousand year of Islamic Civilization on recent times.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By StevoLincolnite on 6/22/2012 8:29:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The only times humanity has flourished have been under times of freedom.


Not true.

The British Empire flourished, controlled one-fifth of the world's population and a quarter of the Earths land area.
And they didn't become a true democracy until 1918 with the introduction of universal adult male suffrage and votes for women aged over 30. (Consequently, the British empire declined after World War 2.)

However, being a democracy doesn't mean your country will be wealthy or successful, plenty of democracies on this Earth which are poor and have very low standards of living.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 3:53:41 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
We actually have elections and give the people power, perhaps less than it used to be, perhaps more, that's debatable, but it is far, far more power than the ruling elite of Iran gives it's people.

We actually have freedom for our people. Perhaps less than it used to be, perhaps more, that's debatable, but it is far, far more freedom than the ruling elite of Iran gives it's people. Particularly religious freedom..


Every word you uttered requires a 300 page counter speech and a lesson on reality.
We really need this virus thing for Fox News.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By mackx on 6/22/2012 5:08:16 PM , Rating: 2
that's true, at least after the US overthrew the elected leaders of Iran. let's ignore that part of course.

power hungry warmongers is a title deserved by the most war hungry and violent nation on this earth - the US. you've been murdering innocent people in the middle east for years now under one pretence or another.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Paj on 6/25/2012 8:04:24 AM , Rating: 2
Shame that's negated by the fact that the US was involved in the overthrow of the democratically elected government of Iran in the 50s, all to try and take a bigger slice of the oil pie. Obama even admitted it himself:

This issue has been a source of tension between the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran. For many years, Iran has defined itself in part by its opposition to my country, and there is indeed a tumultuous history between us. In the middle of the Cold War, the United States played a role in the overthrow of a democratically elected Iranian government. Since the Islamic Revolution, Iran has played a role in acts of hostage-taking and violence against U.S. troops and civilians. This history is well known. Rather than remain trapped in the past, I have made it clear to Iran's leaders and people that my country is prepared to move forward.

The first instance of the USA training dissidents to overthrow governments it doesn't agree with. Sound familiar?

After the 1953 coup, the Shah's government formed the SAVAK (secret police), many of whose agents were trained in the United States. The SAVAK was given a "loose leash" to torture suspected dissidents with "brute force" that, over the years, "increased dramatically".

Jacob G. Hornberger, founder and president, of The Future of Freedom Foundation, said, "U.S. officials, not surprisingly, considered the operation one of their greatest foreign policy successes—until, that is, the enormous convulsion that rocked Iranian society with the violent ouster of the Shah and the installation of a virulently anti-American Islamic regime in 1979".[123] According to him, "the coup, in essence, paved the way for the rise to power of the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and all the rest that's happened right up to 9/11 and beyond"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1953_Iranian_coup_d'%...


RE: Cyber Warfare
By KoS on 6/26/2012 8:34:34 AM , Rating: 2
It was the UK who wanted a bigger slice of the pie, not the US. It's a fantasy, just like Iraq and oil angle.

Nice spin!

I'll repeat what I said earlier....

quote:
The UK was unhappy with the oil fields they developed were nationalised by Iran. The UK convinced the US if the PM wasn't removed that the Iranian government would align itself more closely with the communist and Moscow.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Paj on 6/27/2012 1:56:14 PM , Rating: 2
Its not a fantasy. The role of the CIA is well documented. Its true that the UK was the genesis of the project, and Truman opposed the coup initially, but once Eisenhower got in it was game on.

The CIA funded rioters, dissinters, and after the coup propped up the incumbents with weapons and training of special forces. Kind of like they did in Vietnam, Panama, Afghanistan and Iraq. Those places turned out great!


RE: Cyber Warfare
By KoS on 6/27/2012 2:18:53 PM , Rating: 2
No, it's is a fantasy when you said...US was in it for the oil. They weren't, period.

There is no debate on what the US did in Iran. But to compare it to Vietnam, Panama, Afghanistan and Iraq is absurd. They are all unqiue in their own ways.

Keep up your anti-US screaching! I love it how the UK involvement, which continued after getting the US going, is downplayed. You do realize the UK provided money and other materials as well? But those damn Americans!


RE: Cyber Warfare
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 3:36:47 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
I think that Iran is up to no good


No offense, but this is not a thinking invented in your mind but in my opinion 24 hrs Nazi style propaganda has lot to do with it.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/22/2012 3:47:53 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I think that Iran is up to no good, and I offer no sympathy for them. However, if we start attacking their nuke facilities and infrastructure, how exactly can we hold the moral high ground if they start targeting our defense and financial centers in retaliation?
Using your, and the articles, partial information; it doesn't include Iran's active shooting war. Syria, Lebanon, and the West Bank. They have been medling elsewhere, much of the time inciting violence. Pulling the plug on Iran through non-violent means is sensible, bragging about it is incredibly wrong.
quote:
The only possible excuse I think of is We = Good, They = Bad.
Unfortunately, if we do nothing and they are successful, then use such a device or use it as a threat to imtimidate others in the region to submit we are guilty of not stopping them because it is ALWAYS the US's fault when something goes wrong in the world.

We do something and we are guilty for invading a soverign nation whose intent is purely humanitarian in nature. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Damned either way so do it.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By albus on 6/22/2012 3:50:35 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
because it is ALWAYS the US's fault when something goes wrong in the world.


That sounds like the rant of a teenage girl. You are free to choose to do whatever you like and others are free to judge you. Why try to please everyone?


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/22/2012 5:18:13 PM , Rating: 2
You
quote:
Why try to please everyone?

Me
quote:
Damned either way so do it.


I think I said that.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 4:11:51 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
We do something and we are guilty for invading a soverign nation whose intent is purely humanitarian in nature. Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Damned either way so do it.


I see you in a "Saints dilemma"; if I help they will kill me and if i don't God will kill me.
Mr. Saint, would you like to account for million and million of lives you destroyed in Iraq just to get OIL? What about thousand you killed in pakistan to force your secularism aka satanism?
What about thousand in Afghanistan just to own a strategic piece of land for your future endeavors?
What about terror you inflicted on american people to turn their attention away from a greed culture you harbor?

Are you guys for real? Even Hitler's youth was not this much in delusion.

How we are going to fix ourselves if we keep singing the mantra of glorifying ourselves.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/22/2012 4:57:21 PM , Rating: 2
You apparently have little or no ability to comprehend what is going on. No, I wasn't using a Saints dilemma. What I am saying is it doesn't matter what the US does it will be criticized for doing wrong.

quote:
Mr. Saint, would you like to account for million and million of lives you destroyed in Iraq just to get OIL? What about thousand you killed in pakistan to force your secularism aka satanism?
Which radicalized rock did you crawl out from. Prove you assertions. The problem is you cannot. Show me hard evidence of the US taking either money or product from Iraq. To do so would make the US military a mercenary force which is not. If Pakistan chose not to harbor terrorists it would be a much quieter place. Bin Laden was found where?

As to "greed culture" you are so far out there. Creating wealth and greed are two separate things. Greed has nothing to do with wealth. Greed is nothing more than a selfish and excessive desire for something. It has been applied to wealth mostly by extreme political ideologies. It's use has been to denigrate those who have been successful. Some successful people are greedy, but not all of them are.
quote:
Are you guys for real? Even Hitler's youth was not this much in delusion.
Again you are convoluting the subject in a weak attempt to intimidate by implying connection to evil where there is none.
quote:
How we are going to fix ourselves if we keep singing the mantra of glorifying ourselves.
You have an odd, distorted view. What is your fix? Jump in line with the corrupt UN? Great idea...


RE: Cyber Warfare
By dnd728 on 6/22/2012 5:06:07 PM , Rating: 2
Do I really need to list *all* the deeds of Iran and of all of their proxies in the decades since their revolution, that could already be considered assaults on other countries?


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Skywalker123 on 6/23/2012 11:15:29 PM , Rating: 3
"Do I really need to list *all* the deeds of the U.S. and of all of their proxies in the decades since their revolution, that could already be considered assaults on other countries?"

There, fixed it for you.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Ammohunt on 6/22/2012 5:39:07 PM , Rating: 2
Simple don't broadcast to the world that you are actively conducting cyber-warfare duh! Obama could learn from china in that regard.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By superstition on 6/25/2012 6:32:41 AM , Rating: 2
Haven't you heard of propaganda?

That's where "moral high ground" comes from.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By NellyFromMA on 6/25/2012 12:52:18 PM , Rating: 2
Sadly, the world doesn't revolve around morals. And, you may or may not have heard, but you should look up the story about what place nice guys finish in. Hint: It's not first place.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By superstition on 7/4/2012 12:20:05 AM , Rating: 2
According to which judge, though...

It is always right to do what's right.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By rickon66 on 6/22/2012 2:20:07 PM , Rating: 1
In 1945, the USA could have effectively taken over the world if they had so desired. There was a three year window when no one else had the power that the United States had in the nuke bomb. If the U.S. had wanted to they could have prevented anyone else from developing any meaningful quanity of weapons simply by threating or using a nuke on anyone who tried. No cold war, no Korea, no Vietmam, just Big Brother.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By albus on 6/22/2012 2:23:20 PM , Rating: 1
The nuke bomb is not enough to take over the world. Its not even enough to conquer Berlin, leave alone the rest of the world.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By modus2 on 6/22/2012 2:50:41 PM , Rating: 2
http://www.amazon.com/Bomb-Gerard-DeGroot/dp/07126...
is a good start for learning about the dynamics of nuclear war. According to DeGroot USA may have had a window of opportunity from sometime early 47 until early 51, when they had enough bombs to subdue USSR while USSR didnt yet have enough bombs to make any meaningful damage to USA. Its noteworthy that the old peacenik Curtis LeMay advocated giving the russians two years "to get in line" or facing an all out nuclear assault in 1948..


RE: Cyber Warfare
By albus on 6/22/2012 2:56:30 PM , Rating: 2
You can't win a war with nukes alone. If that would be the case, they could have simply won all their wars against non nuclear opponents. All wars the USA has entered in post WW II have been against non nuclear powers. Why is the success rate not 100%?


RE: Cyber Warfare
By mevans336 on 6/22/2012 3:20:08 PM , Rating: 2
Because in 100% of the the wars post-WW2, we've never used nuclear weapons.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By albus on 6/22/2012 3:23:54 PM , Rating: 2
Even with nukes, there is no surety of winning a war. Nukes can only destroy cities. The vast countryside, water bodies and tunnels are too large to be attacked with nukes.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Jaybus on 6/25/2012 2:05:00 PM , Rating: 2
Umm...cities contain nearly all of the people. Who would be left to resist or to supply the resistance? I suppose it isn't 100% sure, perhaps only 95% sure.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 2:57:26 PM , Rating: 2
Keep in mind that the US and allies won the cold war by appearing morally superior. That few people in the west wanted to live the way they did in the east and that loads of people in the east wanted to live like the west.

Nuking every possible threat would have united the world against the US. And it would have provided moral backing to whatever other nation that developed a nuke to drop it on the US.

No nation will ever be able to maintain complete superiority unless they annihilate any possible competitor (=any nation that have paved streets).


RE: Cyber Warfare
By knutjb on 6/23/2012 2:44:50 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Keep in mind that the US and allies won the cold war by appearing morally superior.
Um, yes we are. Show me where communism was so superior. You got me, oppression.
quote:
Nuking every possible threat would have united the world against the US. And it would have provided moral backing to whatever other nation that developed a nuke to drop it on the US.

No nation will ever be able to maintain complete superiority unless they annihilate any possible competitor (=any nation that have paved streets).
You have an incorrect understanding of the US nuclear program. By having a massive, nearly impossible to destroy deterrent it discourages that kind of attack. It doesn't stop all war. We learned the level of devastation caused in WWII and don't wish to replicate it; no matter how hard Hollywood tries to present a different image.

Iran's leaders has behaved erratically towards its neighbors, and the world since the revolution. Look at all the assassinations they did. They don't care what others think. So allowing an unstable country to enrich uranium far beyond what is required for power generation is dandy with you. Unfortunately, this is not an area for a discourse in moral relativism. Currently, only China and Russia like it. It is a distraction for us to keep up with what they are doing.

The US is far from perfect but does more humanitarian aid than any other country, particularly when it has to be there now. We can't do it all. But Russia is sure doing their best to help Syria!


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ZorkZork on 6/23/2012 4:51:04 PM , Rating: 2
Actually I agree with pretty much everything you wrote. However you did not understand my argument.

If the US had had the policy of nuking any country with nuclear ambitions, then it would no longer look morally superior. Luckily the US didn’t as the world would have been a pretty scary place then.

Lastly the US may be many things, but it is not the biggest provider of Humanitarian aid. If you look up the numbers you will find that there are other countries providing more. And when calculating per capita numbers the US drops pretty far down the list. Luckily there are other important areas where the US significantly above others (stability and security comes to mind). So things even themselves out.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By ritualm on 6/24/2012 8:31:58 PM , Rating: 2
So much disinformation in your post.

Communism isn't anymore different than the current US version of democracy. In communism, the state apparatus spies on you. In the US, corporations and the government spy on you. The net effect ends up being the same.

Begat that 'US is a democracy' crap - US is never a democracy to begin with. It's just like Rome during the age of Caesar, a republic. Unlike the US, Caesar never pretended his state is a democracy.

While you are correct in that a nuclear warheads stockpile effectively guarantees an uneasy peace because the alternative is mutually assured destruction, you are wrong in saying Iran behaving erratically. The country knows the rest of the Western world listens only to USA. It frankly doesn't matter what Iran does at the international stage because USA - and by extension, Western Europe - sees Iran as untrustworthy.

It won't matter. USA has waged a massive global resources war since the end of WWII. Iran, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iraq, Cuba, Vietnam, Afghanistan, all of these are merely proxies.

Russia supports Syria because of US interference through such front line middlemen as NATO and "spreading democracy".

China realized the resources game a long time ago, which is why it cultivated relations with undesirable states in exchange for valuable rare-earth materials mines. The result? China now enjoys virtual monopoly on the stuff.

There is a big war looming over the Northern Passage. Right now it's all rhetoric, but don't be surprised when armies start showing up. Oil isn't the only critically strategic resource everyone's fighting over.

The best part? We're just getting started. Someone is going to lose big, and it can very well be USA.


RE: Cyber Warfare
By Skywalker123 on 6/24/2012 3:44:29 AM , Rating: 4
you're living in a fantasy world, no one country can take over the world. you can't nuke everyone, the capitalists have to have someone to trade with.


Praise
By dgingerich on 6/22/2012 3:02:14 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If the allegations are true, politics aside, it appears both of the last two presidents deserve equal blame or praise for these efforts.


Personally, I'd praise them. It's some of very little praise I have for President Obama, but he does some things right.




RE: Praise
By albus on 6/22/2012 3:03:38 PM , Rating: 2
Why do you praise Obama for attacking Iran?


RE: Praise
By Etsp on 6/22/2012 4:01:33 PM , Rating: 2
It's believed that Israel would have declared war with Iran if this had not been presented as an alternative to curtail their bomb-making efforts. As it is, the Israeli government is still pushing in that direction.


RE: Praise
By albus on 6/22/2012 4:05:11 PM , Rating: 3
Israel will find it very difficult to win the war without American help. Iran fears America more than Israel. A US + Israel combo is more likely to succeed than Israel going alone. America's help will make Israel more confident into going to war with Iran.


RE: Praise
By ZorkZork on 6/22/2012 5:05:19 PM , Rating: 2
Problem with "real war" is that it is easy to bomb Iran into oblivion. Actually hitting underground factories is significantly harder and at least very costly. But the real question is if you are prepared to do that every 3 years? Because after the bombing, people will rally behind the clerics. After you have bombed them, they will believe that the only way to stop the bombing is to acquire nukes that can hit mainland US. And sooner or later they will get them if they really want them.

The crippling sanctions that are happening right now (thanks in large part to Obama by the way) are very clever. There is never really any smoking gun. Banks are told not to work with Iran or else. Oil companies are told not to or else. Flame/Stuxnet. The list goes on and on. The clerics have nothing specific to point their finger at (except the crashed RQ-170 ?) and the people now hate the clerics for mismanaging the country. Hopefully the government will collapse before they build a nuke and the necessary delivery system. If they do get the nukes the sanctions will make it hard to develop the country. Of course, the clerics can turn to North Korean style leadership but that seems to be going nowhere.


RE: Praise
By albus on 6/23/2012 4:14:28 PM , Rating: 3
It does not seem to help much if India & China continue to purchase their oil from Iran. The US can't do much to stop other powerful countries from doing their own bidding. If Russia wants to supply arms to Iran, the US and its allies can only complain in vain. To choke a country, you have to cut all its supply lines. As long as there are countries supporting Iran, it will continue to survive.

The threat of war will only make them want to get a working bomb. If nothing else, it will prevent another fiasco like Iraq.


RE: Praise
By ZorkZork on 6/23/2012 5:05:24 PM , Rating: 2
You cannot stop Iran from getting the bomb and you cannot choke off the country with sanctions (and probably not with war either). But, currently it is much more expensive for Iran to deal with the world than it would otherwise be. Iranian companies cannot trade in the two largest markets in the world (US, EU). When Iranians board an aircraft they are reminded of the “nuclear cost” because they have to fly Russian or really old planes, and those planes have difficulties getting fueled in many parts of the world (thus leading to suboptimal routing). And when they sell their oil it is at a lower price than otherwise because there are fewer buyers and buyers have cannot use the same facilities as others (thus making transportation more expensive). The list goes on …

If Iran moves towards North Korean style government then the above does not matter. But at least until now, the leaders have had some backing from the people (I don’t know how large, people talk about the range around 30-50%). But popular support for the nuclear program could disappear if there is no perceived thread and if the cost for the population is too high.


RE: Praise
By tayb on 6/22/2012 3:06:26 PM , Rating: 2
You would praise him for violating the constitution and attacking a sovereign nation without the consent of the Congress? The constitution clearly defines the war making powers of the Presidency.


America is a terrorist nation
By IranTech on 6/22/2012 3:30:02 PM , Rating: 1
What America is doing and has been doing through successive presidents, are acts of terrorism, not acts of war. While Al-Qaeda and the Syrian Free Army may only have at most 10,000 people that are willing to commit terrorist acts, America has millions of Americans that are willing to commit terrorist acts, and tens of millions more that support them and approve of what they are doing. There is not enough fish in the world to go through them all.




RE: America is a terrorist nation
By albus on 6/22/2012 3:41:36 PM , Rating: 2
Iran is following the Indian model. Using civilian nuclear tech to advance military nuclear tech. Unfortunately, it seems that it is facing more hardships than it anticipated. However, the call for war by Israel seems to accelerate the process.

Israel can only push US as long as it is the numero uno power in the world. Hence, the apparent haste in attacking Iran. Lets see whether Iran has the patience to play the waiting game.


RE: America is a terrorist nation
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 5:04:48 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Iran is following the Indian model. Using civilian nuclear tech to advance military nuclear tech.


If i say They have no plans to advance any military nuclear tech. Would you believe me? Why not?
Because i am stranger over the internet talking to you or basically speaking you don't trust me.

Fair enough!!

Now what is different between me and guy on tv? You have no proof that i ever lied to you but i can provide you dozens of example that that guy on tv misled and deceived you.

Just showing you things are not as simple as they seem. One little out of the box thinking could turn your wholistic paradigm upside down.


RE: America is a terrorist nation
By albus on 6/23/2012 4:03:14 PM , Rating: 2
I support Iran making nuke bombs. It is the only thing preventing another war from flaring up. Without nukes, they will always be the fear of a nuke state waging war. The world has learnt the difference between Iraq & North Korea is one didn't have the bomb; so it got attacked.


RE: America is a terrorist nation
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 3:43:18 PM , Rating: 2
There is light at the end of this tunnel.


RE: America is a terrorist nation
By gglenn on 6/25/2012 12:15:08 PM , Rating: 2
Think of it as Allah's punishment for getting their software from The Great Satan.


By nafhan on 6/22/2012 2:24:51 PM , Rating: 2
Why not call it what its? What they did (if this is true) is attack a foreign nation. Calling it "essentially declaring war" is not quite misleading, but it is unclear. Considering it was a clandestine operation, I think the intention was the opposite of declaring war. Iran of course will react however they feel appropriate.

Kind of an aside... is declaring war still a thing? It seems like a chivalrous anachronism, or maybe a propaganda talking point, more than anything else.




By Argon18 on 6/22/2012 2:28:10 PM , Rating: 2
Not to be rude, but do a little homework. Yes, formal declaration of war is indeed "still a thing". There's quite a lot of formal processes around it actually.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Declaration_of_war


By leviathan05 on 6/22/2012 2:39:45 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, declaring war is still a "thing". There are countless rules regarding Presidential authority and military conduct that are dependent on whether the country is officially at war. We don't officially declare war as a courtesy to the enemy, we do it so that our military and political leadership function together more efficiently.


By tayb on 6/22/2012 2:45:18 PM , Rating: 1
It still exists but only in theory anymore, really. Only Congress has the power to declare ware yet here we sit involved in multiple simultaneous wars for the past 10 years and yet no war has been declared. We were involved with Vietnam and Korea without Congress authorizing war as well.

We've been urinating on that aspect of the constitution for 40 years, I hardly think it's still a requirement to conduct war. Maybe one day the electorate will wake up and remove all the clowns from Congress, maybe not.


By Sazabi19 on 6/22/2012 3:57:26 PM , Rating: 2
LOL, if that's the case then China declared war on us several years ago and is doing so every day. China has been hacking our systems for years and stealing data at least, who knows what else. It's only the idiots that you notice/find.


Inaccurate
By Redwin on 6/22/2012 3:39:08 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Stuxnet was targeting a select weapon -- nuclear missiles -- whose own real purpose was deadly offense


Pretty sure this is simply wrong. Stuxnet targeted uranium enrichment centrifuges, which certainly do have non-offensive capabilities (producing fuel for reactors).

Iran doesn't have any "nuclear missiles" for us to attack (yet).




RE: Inaccurate
By JasonMick (blog) on 6/22/2012 5:06:36 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Pretty sure this is simply wrong. Stuxnet targeted uranium enrichment centrifuges, which certainly do have non-offensive capabilities (producing fuel for reactors).
Wrong, this was highly refined weapons grade uranium that was far beyond the levels of radioactivity needed for basic nuclear research or power. It was fairly obvious to even unbiased observers at the UN that the end-goal was weaponization.

Even if you were to defend their production as being intended for higher power reactors, the fact that they had 5,000 active centrifuges but only one power plant semi-operational showed that their production of fuel/weapons stock grossly exceeded demand.

Let's be real... they were making nukes.
quote:
Iran doesn't have any "nuclear missiles" for us to attack (yet).
More or less true. It is thought to have some old Russian/style mid-range missiles, but nothing of the ICBM flavor. But the main danger is to mid-range targets like Israel or possibly Europe. That's why Israel was planning a physical preemptive missile strike, had Stuxnet failed.

I'm not saying these things to defend the U.S. or condemn Iran.

I actually agree with you and other commenters' criticism, albeit for slightly different reasons...

Personally I think Iran is a very advanced nation that's on the verge of a cultural revolution. I agree to some extent that the leadership is unstable, but I do not believe they are suicidal, hence I think it's mostly fearfulness that's leading us to deny them membership into the nuclear weapons club. After all, Pakistan has nukes and they're arguably far more unstable and corrupt than Iran.

It's important to remember the old idiom:
There but for the grace of God (go I).

You may not believe in God (I do), but I think even if you're an atheist you can praise the intent -- that humans should judge themselves by at least the same scrutiny they judge others.

Sure there's people in Iran who would love to use a nuke on Israel, but there's people in the U.S. who would love to see political leadership of the Middle East bloodily murdered.

To quote Ann Coulter:
quote:
We should invade [Islamists'] countries, kill their leaders, and convert them to Christianity.

Still there are facts supporting both the supporters and the critics of the Obama and Bush administrations' moves.

The big question is: Can we trust Iran with nukes?

Is there dangerous extremism in the Middle East? Sure. But there's dangerous hate and extremism here in the U.S. too. If some American Christian fundamentalists had their way, we would be murdering foreigners and homosexuals out of their warped view of religion.

Just look at the Westboro Baptist Church and KKK for extreme examples. Or Baptist Pastor Charles Worley in North Carolina who suggested putting gay people in concentration camps to solve the "gay problem"...

http://gawker.com/5912100/north-carolina-pastor-of...

(He eventually backed down...
http://www.fayobserver.com/articles/2012/05/02/117...
)

Or Ander Brevik in civilized Norway who murdered dozens in his hopes of becoming a Christian "martyr"....

http://www.timesunion.com/news/article/Is-Anders-B...

(Yes, he clarified he considers himself a Christian and was acting out of his religious beliefs, so let's not BS each other.)

Hate and religious intolerance is as universal as mankind. But I think ultimately Iran is becoming a capitalist, educated nation and its desire to hate is overwhelmed by its want for a prosperous society, much like the U.S.


RE: Inaccurate
By IranTech on 6/23/12, Rating: 0
RE: Inaccurate
By superstition on 6/25/2012 6:43:55 AM , Rating: 2
"If some American Christian fundamentalists had their way, we would be murdering foreigners and homosexuals out of their warped view of religion."

Most people can't be convinced that witches exist anymore so homosexuals have moved from second place to first place.

There has to be someone to demonize, to establish both a problem and a solution.

Or, people can become rational and stop wasting resources on mythology.


Don't care
By overlandpark4me on 6/23/2012 2:36:29 AM , Rating: 2
what we do to that loser country, and that includes a stealth team to take out the leadership one by one. A sniper shot to the head is a good thing..




Anything to tie in Bush.
By overlandpark4me on 6/24/2012 12:48:51 PM , Rating: 2
They key part of this article is Obama pulled the trigger. if the order of presidents was reversed, this would be front page headlines without Obama's name barely mentioned, along with the headline," Bush attacks Iran". Other posters whining about how the Iranian populace will perceive us is more bleeding heart dogma from people who are more concerned about other countries than America.They hate us, and it doesn't matter what we do, so let's give them a good reason to dislike us more. I could care less. The mission is to get rid of them. I'll be so glad when we are rid of this faux "president". When a "president" lets people who are here illegally stay in this country to garner votes, you might as well forget about security.




Turbo Scanner(iPhone, iPad)
By nexscience19 on 6/25/2012 6:03:11 AM , Rating: 2
Turbo Scanner(iPhone, iPad)

Description
Scan, Print, Fax, Download and Store Microsoft Office & PDF Documents.

This app turns your iPhone or iPad into a Handy Scanner, Fax, File Storage or an Air Printer in your pocket. It lets you scan high quality multi-page documents, print it to any AirPrint capable printer in your wifi network, email it or save it to a document folder on your device, post it to Google Docs or fax it to any fax number, directly from your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch.

A highly useful app designed for individual or businesses use.

Download link: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/turbo-scanner/id500...




By Integral9 on 6/25/2012 9:14:35 AM , Rating: 2
All this talk about it being a declaration of war is really over the top I think. We are just using more tools to impose the sanctions. :-P




By seraphim1982 on 6/25/2012 11:04:30 AM , Rating: 2
It is not your Job to determine...the political structure of Iran or who is right an wrong, yes it is an Islamic country, thus the many of their laws are based off religious Islamic Law, as much of the Canadian, US, UK laws are based of Roman Catholics Laws. Because you don't agree with it, doesn't make it wrong there...

I just want to put somethings in perspective for Iran.
They have hostiles (Israel) around them, who have publicly declared hostility. Their Ally (US) has attacked and made a puppet states of their neighbours in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Their primary source of income/$ is oil, which is a finite reserve and cannot be used forever. Nuclear Fission is far more efficient, despite whether they want to make a nuke plant or a nuke bomb, its their decision. Israel has a far worse track record of abusing people and their military power than the Iranians have in the past 20 years, furthermore, they have NOT disclosed to any nuke proliferation treaty the number of nukes they have. We should be watching them before Iran. I'm not defending them, but putting this debate in their perspective.

The Worm and Drones in itself can be perceived as an act of war already. IF they had a nuke or a much larger army, then they wouldn't be bullied by the like of the US/Israel.




iIdiots
By hiscross on 6/22/2012 6:43:37 PM , Rating: 1
If people think we can talk any sense into these people, then you live wa wa land. You don't talk to these people, you show them who is boss. They always back down. Who cares if their economy falls apart? Let it. These people where once the greatest nation on earth, until they decided to screw with Sparta. The rest is history.




We'll probably never know...
By Beenthere on 6/22/12, Rating: -1
RE: We'll probably never know...
By AliShawkat on 6/22/2012 4:19:44 PM , Rating: 4
Keep watching fox news buddy.


RE: We'll probably never know...
By sfi2k7 on 6/22/2012 4:53:33 PM , Rating: 3
I wonder though how could you have "beenthere" while you seem you never been any where.

No kidding man. You messed up.

Unplug that tv, seriously.


By Skywalker123 on 6/23/2012 11:22:08 PM , Rating: 3
See my previous posts commenting on beenthere, he's a moron, but I didn't know he was a vicious, racist moron too.


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