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Schneier Calls US Stuxnet Cyberattack a 'Destabilizing and Dangerous' Action 351

alphadogg writes "Revelations by The New York Times that President Barack Obama in his role as commander in chief ordered the Stuxnet cyberattack against Iran's uranium-enrichment facility two years ago in cahoots with Israel is generating controversy, with Washington in an uproar over national-security leaks. But the important question is whether this covert action of sabotage against Iran, the first known major cyberattack authorized by a U.S. president, is the right course for the country to take. Are secret cyberattacks helping the U.S. solve geopolitical problems or actually making things worse? Bruce Schneier, whose most recent book is 'Liars and Outliers,' argues the U.S. made a mistake with Stuxnet, and he discusses why it's important for the world to tackle cyber-arms control now."
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Schneier Calls US Stuxnet Cyberattack a 'Destabilizing and Dangerous' Action

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  • by crazyjj ( 2598719 ) * on Tuesday June 19, 2012 @09:36AM (#40369087)

    Would you liked a signed letter from the CIA and NSA directors talking about their top secret program? Because, obviously vetted sources in the most reputable newspaper in the U.S., a Congressional investigation into the leak, a Presidential denial of the leak, etc. aren't enough to convince you. So I'm assuming that we need to get Leon Panetta to come over to your house and read you in on the program.

  • by eldavojohn ( 898314 ) * <eldavojohn&gmail,com> on Tuesday June 19, 2012 @09:48AM (#40369247) Journal

    Iran was actually getting pretty moderate before that speech, even sending open condolences and holding vigils after 9-11, with fairly moderate leadership. After the speech we get Ahmadinejad and and full-on nuke program. Smart move, George.

    You are flat out wrong. The candle light vigils held for 9-11 victims were entirely citizen events [newamericamedia.org] and had nothing to do with the government. I have two Iranian citizens as good friends and they are completely different people than Ahmadinejad and, worse, their nutjob supreme leader [wikipedia.org]. Your insinuation that Iran the nation state sent open condolences and held vigils after 9-11 is laughable and erroneous -- some of the leadership did condemn the attacks but that's as far as it went. Hate the nation not the national. Hate the religion not the religious.

    Your blame on George is also largely misplaced. They had deals with Russia to improve their nuke program long before him [wikipedia.org] and the leaders have always wanted the ultimate weapon. I know life would be simpler if everything was George W. Bush's fault but, unfortunately for you, we must face reality.

  • Re:Obama's Record (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19, 2012 @09:59AM (#40369381)

    This program started under Bush.

  • Re:Obama's Record (Score:5, Informative)

    by MyLongNickName ( 822545 ) on Tuesday June 19, 2012 @10:07AM (#40369503) Journal

    You realize that Obama has increased troops to Afghanistan and only removed troops from Iraq when forced to by their government? Gitmo is also still open.

  • So you hate the USA? (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 19, 2012 @12:04PM (#40371087)

    They've signed SEVERAL treaties. For example NAFTA. They ignore that one to put a protectionist tax on Canadian Softwood Lumber.

    And they're abrogating their treaty under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Pact.

    So I guess since you hate Iran for lying their asses off, you hate the USA for doing it too, right? Or is it only *small* countries doing this you have a problem with?

  • Re:Yes, and? (Score:5, Informative)

    by DesScorp ( 410532 ) <DesScorp@noSpAM.Gmail.com> on Tuesday June 19, 2012 @12:36PM (#40371683) Homepage Journal

    And if you see a vulnerability in scum like Kim Barking Mad Teapots North Korea or Ahmadinejad's Iran then we should be doing our best to take them out now whilst we still can.

    Which is exactly the mind set that got us into this position. Neither Iran nor North Korea would be such a big problem for us now if we hadn't sponsored a coup in one, and used the other as a proxy during the Cold War.

    The way we deal with them today will set the stage for the next 50-100 years. We can keep fucking with them, or we can work on decreasing tensions.

    This is absolutely astonishing. We "used" North Korea as a proxy? Really? Crawl out of your political cocoon for a minute, and look at the facts: North Korea is a pariah because it attempted an invasion of South Korea in 1950, supplied and backed by the Soviet Union and Maoist China. The Norks were a proxy, all right, but a proxy used as a weapon against the West and emerging Asian democracies by Stalin and Mao.You DO know this, right? Or are we going to get a conspiracy theory about it? And ever since, they've periodically attacked the South or US forces stationed there. The regime is infamous for kidnapping South Korean citizens for reasons as varied as the need for political prisoners to Kim Jong Il having the hots for a actress he saw in the South. The Norks are as institutionally brutal, corrupt, and totalitarian as any regime in history, and they got that way all on their own. Every time we try to "decrease tensions" with the North... giving them aid, etc... they abuse it, renege on their agreements, and inevitably attack the South in some manner. Did you forget that they sank a ship of the SK Navy a few years ago, literally because they could get away with it? That they just woke up one day and decided to shell South Korea last year?

    You can debate the Iranian situation (though I think an Islamist government was inevitable no matter what policy we followed), but to somehow blame us for North Korea is the very height of what Jeanne Kirkpatrick used to call the "Blame America First" syndrome.

"Never face facts; if you do, you'll never get up in the morning." -- Marlo Thomas