Monday, April 19, 2010

Cyber War

Richard Clarke's track record as a bearer of bad news is pretty good. He's written a book called "Cyber War" which -- based on the Terry Gross interview I'm listening to now -- ain't just based on hypothetical cyber attacks in the future; he's also talking about stuff that's already happened.

Evidently, the Chinese have implanted logic bombs in the USA electrical grid. We've returned the compliment. He suggests it'd be a good idea if the electrical companies took their shit off the Internet. Gee, you think?

He speculates that our pals in the PRC will probably not want to destroy the USA banking system because -- I paraphrase -- we owe them some much freaking money. The North Koreans don't have this problem. Shit, they print as much American money as they want.

He adds that the North Koreans have honed their cyber attack skills in freaking 4-star Chinese hotels. So the Chinese aren't entirely our best pals. Or entirely sane.

Clarke's basic point seems to be our pants are down and our nethers are flapping in the wind. Yep. I've pre-ordered his book, natch. Will do a full review as soon as I read it. But I've got something to say and I have to say it now. It's a profound irony and I want the credit for saying it first.

The Internet was originally the Arpanet. It was created by DARPA -- the Defense Departments Advanced Research boys. OK, here's the gag. You ready? The whole point of the Arpanet was creating a self-contained communication system whereby defense spooks and advanced university researchers could still communicate with each other in the event of an atomic attack.

It was meant to be a double-secret private conversation. A cone of silence.

Not an open barn door.

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