Quartz (qz.com) reported on October 7th, 2018 that defense officials in Great Britain have simulated a crippling cyber attack on Russia as part of its military preparedness planning. However, the reported piece, like most of the West’s reporting about Russia, is full of innuendo and vague references to dimly possible scenarios that carry very little to zero burden of proof. To highlight that end, we are emphasizing these rather hyperbolic talking points in bold type:
British defense officials say they have practiced cyber war games that could shut off electricity in Russia’s capital, The Sunday Times (paywall) reports.
The measures are part of a wider range of strategies to hit back at an increasingly assertive Russia—accused of interfering with US elections, cyberattacks on Western targets, and poisoning a former spy on UK soil—without resorting to a full-blown nuclear attack.
“If they sank our aircraft carrier with a nuclear-tipped torpedo, what is our response? There’s nothing between sinking their submarine and dropping a nuclear weapon on northern Kamchatka,” one senior source told The Sunday Times. “This is why cyber is so important; you can go on the offensive and turn off the lights in Moscow to tell them that they are not doing the right things.”
Military planners are looking for options if Russian president Vladimir Putin tests NATO’s resolve by seizing small islands belonging to Estonia, taking control of Libya’s oil reserves, or using ”irregular forces” to attack troops, according to the report.
British troops also recently held their biggest military exercise in 10 years, which included six navy ships and more than 5,000 troops in the Omani desert, to prepare for a confrontation with unconventional Russian forces like those used in Crimea. Cyber weapons are seen as a potential deterrent and a way to avoid a direct military confrontation.
UK defense chiefs are talking up their cyber prowess after a string of alleged Russian hacker exploits, including revelations last week of a Russian computer attack on the international chemical weapons watchdog. The attempted hack was disrupted by Dutch military intelligence with the help from British officials. Also last week, US authorities charged Russian intelligence officers with seeking to hack the nuclear energy company Westinghouse Electric and anti-doping watchdogs.
The announcements suggest world leaders are pushing back against Putin’s increasing aggressive cyber operations, which allegedly includes breaking into the control rooms of vital US electric grids(paywall). Russia, after all, has hammered smaller nations with its cyber weapons in the past. The country disabled computer systems for the Estonia’s parliament, broadcasters, and banks in 2007, according to the Times, and regularly disrupts Ukrainian banking and electrical systems.
The US is expected to announce that it will use its cyber capabilities on behalf of NATO if asked, Reuters reported last week. The US announcement is aimed squarely at Russia, according to a senior defense official, and is part of a British-led effort to stiffen NATO’s cyber capacity. The 29-nation alliance has recognized cyber as a domain of warfare since 2014, but the precise implications haven’t been formalized.
American intelligence shows that Russian hackers broke into the Democratic National Committee and leaked information in the lead-up to the US presidential election. The White House recently warned foreign entities that it would use more offensive measures as part of its revised cyber security strategy. US intelligence reportedly expects a series of hacker attacks before congressional elections next month.
There is a great deal of bold-type above, and its consistency and constancy are emblematic of the West’s continued effort to isolate President Vladimir Putin and the nation he leads. However, as many readers of The Duran already know, the vast bulk of these claims are simply fake news, or at best, unproven allegations. Two of the most glaringly fake reports given here are about the alleged “unconventional military” employed in Crimea (these were actually simply Crimean citizens who voted to rejoin Russia, reversing the 1954 Khrushchev era “gift” of the region to Ukraine) and the allegation of Russian interference in the US presidential elections of 2016 (never proven, and categorically denied by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange).
Behind all this mighty effort is an attempt by a strange alliance of Cold War era hawkish people in the US and the efforts of mega-globalist figures like George Soros and his ally (or perhaps surrogate) Bill Browder to prevent the Russian Federation from charting its own course as a sovereign nation in the world.
While Russia has made it public record that they, too, are prepared for a major world-scale conflict, as most noticeably in joint wargames with China and Mongolia at the Vostok-2018 event, Russia vigorously and repeatedly counters the aggression rhetoric from the West each time.
Great Britain recently had its own claims about the “danger” of Russia refuted by no less of an event than the 2018 FIFA World Cup, which featured England’s team playing all over Russia, and many English fans following the games. Both through reading reports in various news sources and through direct contact, the sum total of the thought of British citizens who saw and experienced Russia firsthand was that the nation offered nothing but warmth and friendship, countering the hysterical screeds of Boris Johnson and Theresa May.
In a logical world, one reviews factual information to arrive at an opinion. However, in the West, it appears that one forms an opinion and simply blocks any information that challenges it.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.