Walter Russell Mead is my favorite blogger. If you’re not reading him, you should. Mead was the Henry Kissinger Chair on the Council on Foreign Relations, a position of enormous prestige. Ever since he left that chair, he’s been a blogging powerhouse.
Here’s a nugget on the growing threat of cyberwarfare:
We are close to the point at which an effective cyberstrike against our information infrastructure could do more damage and even kill more people than a repeat of 9/11.
Mead goes on to say:
[A]s first US and then other military forces around the world integrate information technology more thoroughly into their war fighting capacity, the potential for countermeasures and attacks that exploit vulnerabilities in technologically enhanced warfare expand. The mysterious Stuxnet virus that effectively sabotaged the Iranian nuclear program shows that malware can do real damage in the physical world; future conflicts could see e-sabotage directed against a variety of civilian industrial, financial and economic targets.
One useful word to describe the implications of these developments is “dire”. Another would be “destabilizing”. An immense new field of conflict and vulnerability is opening up, and while the United States has great strengths in this area, investments in cyberwar are cheap enough that many other powers, including freelance terror and criminal groups, can reasonably hope to use cyberwar as part of an asymmetrical strategy that neutralizes America’s conventional military supremacy.
Read the whole thing, and check out Via Meadia while you’re there.