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Evidence of Russian Cyberwarfare Against Georgia

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the oh-this-won't-go-back-and-forth-forever dept.

Security 316

An anonymous reader writes "In what seems to be a repeat of what happened in July, a few news sites have mentioned that there is evidence of a campaign against Georgia. For example, both the government's and the president's sites are inaccessible, among other official websites. For some analysis, the RBN Exploit blog demonstrates various traceroutes that have failed to several sites. They also claim that the RBN (Russian Business Network cyber-crime organisation) are behind the attacks, and that 'Many of Georgia's internet servers were under external control from late Thursday,' before the actual war began. Finally, according to this Twitter account of someone in Georgia (written in Russian), he claims that 'Russia has blocked access to Georgian websites from within Russia' (rough translation)."

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316 comments

They hit CNN (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542477)

After Google told them they were based in Atlanta, Georgia.

Re:They hit CNN (1, Funny)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542547)

No wonder snort kept sending me alerts while I was at the airport in Atlanta...

IF anyone sees any Russians, shoot to kill, boys!

Re:They hit CNN (0, Flamebait)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542613)

That was Savannah, you ignernt yankees!

DISCLAIMER: I live in Douglas County. And we all have shotguns here, so they better not try it.

Re:They hit CNN (1)

KGIII (973947) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543451)

I was in the Okefenokee (spelling?) just before Thanksgiving of last year. I was off the main roads and out in "real" Georgia, not the Atlanta area or cities. I can confirm the above statement as being likely factually correct. ALL of the racks in the trucks had firearms.

Re:They hit CNN (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543673)

Come 'n get it, bone head!

The Russians hit the truth. (3, Informative)

reporter (666905) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542991)

The Kremlin is now issuing official statements accusing the Georgians of committing genocide. The Russians are using this lie to justify invading Georgia and seizing it.

To understand how Russian "justice" works, read the shocking story [washingtonpost.com] published by "The Washington Post" (TWP). Natalia Trufanova was driving a Zhiguli [washingtonpost.com] (a lightweight Russian car) with her family in Moscow in September of 2007. She was minding her own business and dutifully obeying the traffic laws. Then, suddenly, a motorcade carrying Supreme Court President Vyacheslav Lebedev and coming from the opposite direction entered the wrong lane -- the lane in which Trufanova was driving. A vehicle in the motorcade smashed into the Zhiguli, killing Trufanova and her family. The Russian police wrote a false report, claiming that Trufanov drove into the wrong lane.

TWP notes, "When angry witnesses started posting video on the Web clearly showing that it was the motorcade that was driving in the wrong lane, the lead investigator looking into the accident said that he didn't have access to the Internet."

Re:The Russians hit the truth. (0, Troll)

cyrill_grk (971692) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543179)

Do you really think like this? 2000 of innocent people have been killed by Georgia soldiers... And you still claim that it's Russian fault... Oh my... we just can't leave Osetia area - there are Russian people who are under Georgia fire. I just wonder how west journalists 'play' with words to claim Russian guilty. Guys quite frankly - stop listen American propaganda and take a look on _real_ things. We didn't start the war, we didn't want it, we just can't allow to kill Russian people. And if that happen we have to protect our people in other part of the world - we will do without any doubts!!!

Re:The Russians hit the truth. (1)

pallmall1 (882819) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543373)

-stop listen American propaganda and take a look on _real_ things.

Here's some British coverage [dailymail.co.uk] for you. It looks like its a_real_thing to that woman in the photo.

Re:The Russians hit the truth. (0, Troll)

cyrill_grk (971692) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543429)

i'm not even wondered by - you always believe in _what_ you want to believe! Nothing else. I saw British report about Russian violence in Georgia - and it's full of sh*t. And it's not surprice in case of Russian-British problems (remember Litvinenco). Anyway, you may take a look from another point of view http://top.rbc.ru/photoreport/09/08/2008/217994.shtml [top.rbc.ru] Please, don't get me wrong - any more or less normal government will be protecting their civilians (and of course it has to). But there is a confrontation I would say btw Amecrica and Russia. It's not started today, not yesterday - do you remember Karibian Crisis? Of course I really hate _any_ violence - but in case of Georgia we just have no choise except to protect our people. Maybe you should take a look on photos fron Iraque to realise something first! So any information could be present in two views but it doesn't make Osetia live easier. And as I saw many-many georgian civilians just hate this war too - but georgian government it seems to be in madness and doesn't think about their own people... unfortunelly... i really hope this situation (war) will be stopped soon and _normal_ negotiations being.

Bullshit, BP says pipeline has not been bombed (3, Informative)

tetromino (807969) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543441)

The owners of the pipeline say it has not been bombed. See http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/afp/080809/world/georgia_sossetia_russia_unrest_oil_bp [yahoo.com]

The report about the pipeline attack is almost certainly Georgian propaganda (unless it's simply unsubstantiated rumors) - and it looks like the British journos fell for it. But hey, in this modern world of journalism 2.0, who cares about truth and fact-checking, as long as you can get the pageviews?

Re:The Russians hit the truth. (4, Insightful)

jd (1658) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543513)

The Daily Mail is not known for being terribly honest. It's a tabloid. If the news isn't in at least two serious broadsheets from independent sources, or one broadsheet and either the BBC or ITN, then it should not be regarded as credible. (As for American news sources, I trust virtually nothing from any source. Most of it is reprinted from Reuters or some other news agency pool, probably misquoted, and then censored by the advertisers. If it's Fox, it's just really bad fiction.)

Re:The Russians hit the truth. (4, Informative)

TrueRecord (1101681) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543615)

Chronologically it was this way: At midnight between the 7th and 8th of August Georgian regular army started heavy bombings of the villages and Tskhinvali, the capital of South Ossetia full of people btw. The villages were wiped out. The city was destroyed. For about 15 hours there were only Georgian forces, the forces of defenders of South Ossetia, the peace keepers who could not do anything but watch, and civilians who were taken by surprise. About 2000 non-combatants were murdered by the bombardments, the city hospital was ruined. There were losses among the peace keepers. The hell lasted about 15 hours when the at last Russian forces approached Tskhinvali. They were really welcomed because Georgians' military turned out to be very ruthless. Words fail to describe the atrocities by the Georgian military.

Re:The Russians hit the truth. (1)

c0sine (959434) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543687)

Hey, wise boy: what the hell that chilling story about traffic incidents (posted by Washington Post - LOL: wanna share with us something from Faux News too?) has to do with Georgian murderers killing 2,000+ civilians in Osetia? Russia had stopped the genocide there, you brain washed punk Have a nice day

Re:They hit CNN (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543067)

I would not be surprised, given the history of Kremlin behavior, I could not read any Georgian sites cuz they (FSB or russian GRU etc) wanted to spread their well-thought of plan of bashing Georgia and its government of so called "alleged act of war against Russian civilians and all that nonsense", which is obviously not true, since I know Georgians would never do that (I've been there many times). Few of Georgian friends called me this afternoon and requested to help them out to stop DDoS attacks on Debian servers which hosted Georgian sites, and they were trying to tell their side of story of what actually happened and put more information about casualties etc, but unfortunately I could not think of anything, can anyone of you recommend any good means of defending Debian servers against such attacks? I was trying to help out Georgian friend.
You can also send me an email to bubba_bubu@yahoo.com

By the way, for those who wanted to know what's going on, here events that led to a full scale war between Georgia and Russia:
1) August 6th, Georgian part/villages of South Ossetia was constantly shelled from a separatist artillery; although Russians were supposed to be a peace keepers but they did not interfered, neither stopped separatist from shelling Georgian villages;
2) August 6th, georgian president pleaded and called on unilateral cease fire by Georgians and ordered not to respond to any provocation by separatist;
3) Few Georgian civilian bystanders were hit by shrapnel and apparently died; some Georgian military troops were hit as well, few houses were demolished;
4) Georgian envoy sent by president to separatist for negotiation to stand down weapons and cease fire immediately;
5) Allegedly russian party agrees on this, but Georgian envoy car was stopped in checkpoint and blatantly forced back by separatist stating they would not talk to any Georgians, so this attempt was failed.
6) To stop continuous bomb shelling Georgian president calls to restore a constitutional order and military action to drive out criminal structure of South Ossetia. Russian were requested not to intervene.
7) Russia reported that there were many civilian casualties in Tskinvali and apparently 12 Russian peace keepers were wounded or died as a result of military operation; Georgia denied this allegation.
8) Russian prime minister Putin orders full scale military operation against Georgia. Russian strategic bombers start bombing territories deep in Georgia far from conflict zone of South Ossetia i.e. Gory (fully demolished), airport near Tbilisi, Kutaisi (2nd largest city), port Poti located in coast of Black Sea, and South Abkazia (kodori region);
9) All Georgian internet portal were attacked and could not be accessed. Georgian government portal were hijacked by Russians and poster of Hitler and Saakashvili were placed side by side;

Now, since all Russian media and internet is fully controlled by Kremlin (btw there's no freedom of speech in Russia) there is no independent source on Russian side), so all separatist and Russian casualties were blown out of proportion in order to legitimize this invasion;
cheers,
bubzie

How about when the government is net-based? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542491)

It boggles the mind to imagine what warfare will be like when governments are internet-based [metagovernment.org] .

But at least it probably will not involve real violence.

Re:How about when the government is net-based? (1)

Kratisto (1080113) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542551)

Not directly, no, but the effects of digital attacks on a country's infrastructure can result in suffering and fatalities, nonetheless.

Re:How about when the government is net-based? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542665)

Net based? Ridiculous! That would be like, modern or something. Government doesnt work that way.

Re:How about when the government is net-based? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543289)

A net based government sounds fine until you need someone to enforce safety regulations, or stop that guy from breaking into your store every thursday, or fight organized crime, or build a road, or maintain the villiage pump, or to stop a monopoly. For those things you need real live people.

The real problem is .... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542707)

using an insecure OS. If these fools insist on using Windows, well, that is like paying for an m1a1 but with a screen door and totally made out of Reynolds aluminum foil.

Re:The real problem is .... (1)

Atlantis-Rising (857278) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542741)

...where would you put a screen door on an M1A1?

Re:The real problem is .... (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542945)

I think a BMP-1 [wikipedia.org] would be a better example for this part of the world. And the screen would go on the back, where the door is.

Yep, that's what the Georgians use. 149 with reactive armor in 2008. 40 in 2007. Originally 667 were inherited from former USSR in 1991. 80 BMP-1 and BMP-2 IFVs were claimed by the Abkhaziyan Army and the same amount by the South Ossetian Army. But Russia still has 1,543 in active service and more than 9,057 in reserve.

Re:The real problem is .... (0, Redundant)

aliquis (678370) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542879)

Yeah, clearly running Windows was the issue, if they had ran leenucks this would never have been able to happen! NEVAR!

Re:How about when the government is net-based? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543097)

It boggles the mind to imagine what warfare will be like when governments are internet-based.

But at least it probably will not involve real violence.

Um, unless you are confused, cyber warfare and normal warfare are not mutually exclusive. I think this current conflict illustrates that point quite clearly.

Re:How about when the government is net-based? (4, Insightful)

eltaco (1311561) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543455)

"It has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried." -Sir Winston Churchill. http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/Sir_Winston_Churchill/ [quotationspage.com] Sure, democracy kinda works. But it wasn't democracy that gave us the constitution, which in my eyes, is so much more important than a "majority vote". democracy, as soon as it gets down to simplicities, is 51% oppressing 49%. just to put that in words: the majority fucks over any minority as they please. over here in Europe, we're not even so sure that our representatives are actually acting on behalf of the 51%. What say you, America? as soon as the majority can be coerced (I study advertising, it really isn't that difficult), we're back to who has the most money and who can throw the best parties, sucking up to those people who donate the most money. ya, this ain't news. but too many act like they don't know this. anyhow, my favourite quote of the parent's link: "It is proposed that government can be successful, and even vastly superior, if it has the direct participation of all of the governed. Open source governance incorporates the best features of direct democracy and tempers the drawbacks by use of a superior participation model and community structure." Are we talking about a Grassroots Democracy? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grassroots_democracy [wikipedia.org] oh, I get it! it's a government that lets the populace take part in it's decisions! Kinda like how democracy is (supposed to be). Open source government is a government that listens to it's people.. in contrast to democracy (..?!) I'm not bashing you personally, parent, but democracy isn't the A & O it makes out to be. well, in soviet russia, I give you negative karma.

Re:How about when the government is net-based? (1)

eltaco (1311561) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543705)

oh, heh, I forgot my actual point: a net-based government is in theory only more efficient in obtaining general opinion and "votes". it bumps efficiency to a maximum. no paper, no per-hand counting, no run-arounds for surveys. in practice, you're inviting every black hat world-wide to fraud the vote and the polls. And at that point we're back to voting machines and the surrounding scandals. sorry for the double post. I'm too drunk to find the edit button.

Of course they cut access (4, Insightful)

ka9dgx (72702) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542521)

I'd cut access to any country I was preparing to wage war against... it's common sense to help stop communications to fifth columnists. Of course, they'll route around it. --Mike--

Re:Of course they cut access (5, Insightful)

tchiseen (1315299) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542681)

I also am not surprised. Thousands of people have been killed in good old fashion bombings and shootings, why wouldn't they resort to other types of warfare and propaganda. I'm just surprised they're not doing more. I'm sure if Russia were inclined to, they could do more serious damage to Georgian communications infrastructure. In war, many of peoples rights are disrupted, including freedom of information.

Re:Of course they cut access (4, Insightful)

oliderid (710055) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543553)

they could do more serious damage to Georgian communications infrastructure

from what I understood, Russia just bombed a relatively important Georgian port and they are actively bombing a georgian town centre close to the border. I feel like Russia forces in the area are already bombing as much as they can. The whole Russian army isn't concentrated in that part of the world.

Anyway it was truly foolish for the Georgian government to attack the rebel region if they knew that their army was no match for the Russian forces...If they didn't know, they should leave the office at once. You didn't need to be a expert to understand that.

The truth is that Russia is about to seize two ex Georgian territories for some good reasons (oppressed minorities) and somes bad ones (Russia is historically interested by southern territories near the black sea...It all started in the XIX, see the crimea war). The current Georgian state cannot do much against it. They should concentrate themselves on economic recovery (there were good signs lately), diplomacy (looking for support in the west was a good idea...But it takes time...Such a strategy requires decades of hard work and diplomatic skills) and building a better future for their citizens.

I had always some sympathy for Georgia, they used to be the last european bastion in front of invaders of all sort (mongols, muslims, etc.), I truly hope they'll get the leaders they deserve.

The Spark (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542559)

I have a bad feeling that this conflict is going to spread, catalyzing all the violence that has been the undercurrent of world politics in the past few years. A possible world war.

I don't blame you. (1)

gcnaddict (841664) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542587)

That's what happened the last time.

--points at World War I

Re:I don't blame you. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542687)

Uh, WWI wasn't the "last" world war.

Re:I don't blame you. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542705)

Uh, WWI wasn't the "last" world war.

It wasn't? Then why don't you tell us what was, Professor History. And while you're at it, why don't you explain how your precious history is going to help us if we're headed towards global conflict?!

Re:I don't blame you. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542921)

Those who don't learn from history... can't pass tenth grade.

Re:I don't blame you. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543211)

Parent poster is clearly not American.

Re:I don't blame you. (2, Insightful)

whong09 (1307849) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542853)

It seems unlikely. The political landscape doesn't look like what it did pre-WWI europe. For one thing, there totally isn't the whole tanglement of alliances that escalated the conflict. I think such a war would be impossible for another fundamental reason. Communications technology has shrunk the world to the point where it is inconceivable to allow that sort of thing to happen. Instantaneous foreign criticism would likely stop the violence from escalating, and global organizations like the UN would attempt to stop the fight (UN =/= league of nations in terms of uselessness, before anyone says anything). Besides, there's no sign of foreign involvement as of now so it seems highly unlikely that this will be little more than a burp.

Re:The Spark (5, Insightful)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542743)

"I have a bad feeling that this conflict is going to spread,"

You're young. People always get a little jittery when an invasion happens somewhere and they're not the ones behind it. Now you know how the rest of the world feels.

"catalyzing all the violence that has been the undercurrent of world politics in the past few years."

Except that, if you turn off the television from time to time, you'd see that things are still rather peaceful compared to recent history.

"A possible world war."

It's difficult to have a world war without two large international factions aligned against each other. It'd be difficult (to say the least) to determine common enemies in the smattering of brushfire regional wars we're seeing.

Heck, what we're seeing in Georgia right now stands out because it's just so damned old skool: using a fifth column to destabilize a neighbor to soften them up for some good ol' fashioned land-grabbing. You gotta give credit to Putin, he knows his stuff.

Re:The Spark (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542949)

The West is unquestionably aligned against Russia in this matter. They just don't care enough to actually do something about it.

Re:The Spark (5, Interesting)

rve (4436) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543399)

In 1991, when Georgia seceeded from the soviet union, a civil war followed in which these two provinces separated themselves from Georgia.

Historically, when a province or state seceeded from another country, there has rarely been unanimous agreement as to exactly where the new border should be. Take as an example a certain secession attempt in the western hemisphere in 1861.

Quite often the province borders aren't drawn along ethnic lines, sometimes they're even completely arbitrary. For example the borders between Croatia and Serbia and Bosnia were the one time border between the Austrian and Turkish empires.

In the last two decades, a number of provinces have seceeded from larger eastern european countries, and every time the international community ("the west") was quick to recognize the independence, and the new borders exactly as the breakaway province claimed them, disregarding any claim by the other side as imperialism.

The war in Bosnia for example was a result, as a large chunk of the new country felt more Serbian than Bosnian, and attempted to break away from Bosnia by military means.

More such conflicts (and probably wars) are almost certain, as about 15 million Russians live in former Soviet republics (up to 30% of the population in some), many of whom presumably would prefer to be part of Russia.

The same situation took place in the countries of the present EU as nation states took form in the 19th century, which was followed by about 100 years of terrible wars, and ultimately settled by ethnic cleansing and assimilation politics on a massive scale. (15 million ethnic Germans were deported from central and eastern Europe after WW2, for example, forever ending any German territorial claims)

Wait a second...? (1)

areusche (1297613) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542577)

This sounds oddly similar to Splintercell 1. Maybe Nicholadze is real and Sam is actively working to stop this menace!

Re:Wait a second...? (1)

lord_sarpedon (917201) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543459)

I was playing Chaos Theory earlier today.

It's probably those damn masse kernels. This probably started in South Korea.

The Redcross (5, Funny)

ed__ (23481) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542595)

Times like these are when the red cross is most appreciated. They will likely soon be flying in C-130's full of porn and lol-cats jpegs. 'Round the clock flights will continue until the Georgian internet connections can be restored.

(additionally, the traceroutes could also fail because the routers and computers have been exploded by the russians with bombs from airplanes. this would be a worrying escalation of cyberwarfare).

Re:The Redcross (1)

Bane1998 (894327) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542717)

Times like these are when the red cross is most appreciated. They will likely soon be flying in C-130's full of porn and lol-cats jpegs. 'Round the clock flights will continue until the Georgian internet connections can be restored.

(additionally, the traceroutes could also fail because the routers and computers have been exploded by the russians with bombs from airplanes. this would be a worrying escalation of cyberwarfare).

IT folk as military targets... now that's something.

Re:The Redcross (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543261)

You do realize that the only reason violence subsided in Iraq was that the sustained lolcatting caused serious brain injuries to the Iraqi militias? Al-Sadr hasn't formed a peaceful wing as much as he has formed a counter-lolcat division of lolgoggie posters.

How about a much simpler explanation? (5, Interesting)

jdoeii (468503) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542661)

Georgia is a small republic with very little traffic to web resources under normal conditions. Now they are getting likely several orders of magnitude more traffic. And these are the consequences. But of course the "cyberwarfare" is much juicier piece for journalists to chew on.

Increased traffic, yes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542909)

It also explains defaced Georgian governmental sites, too. Sure.

Re:Increased traffic, yes. (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542975)

It also explains defaced Georgian governmental sites, too. Sure.

No, that's because they're using Microsoft web servers. Way too easy for script kiddies :)

Welcome to 21st century warfare... (2, Funny)

tetromino (807969) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543363)

...where astroturfing, sock-puppetry, slanted journalism and propaganda matters far more than the reality on the ground. Slashdot is a contested territory, and it looks like Georgia's propaganda troops have launched a first strike.

Not that I'm defending Russia here. The only reason Georgian astroturfers have overpowered the Russian ones on Slashdot is that the moronic Russian leadership, as usual, hasn't been investing enough resources in information warfare.

Re:How about a much simpler explanation? (3, Interesting)

flyingsquid (813711) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543709)

Georgia is a small republic with very little traffic to web resources under normal conditions. Now they are getting likely several orders of magnitude more traffic. And these are the consequences. But of course the "cyberwarfare" is much juicier piece for journalists to chew on.

Please read the news once in a while. Russia has launched cyberattacks on smaller neighbors before, most notably Estonia. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyberattacks_on_Estonia_2007 [wikipedia.org]

By all accounts, Russia and Georgia are both to blame for what's going on here. But if you look at the pattern of behavior in the past few years... well, we've seen Russian dissidents poisoned with radioactive sushi, Russian journalists assassinated, an opposition leader in the Ukraine poisoned with dioxin... Jesus H. Christ, wake up and smell the coffee already. Maybe we don't think we're in the next phase of the Cold War, but Putin pretty clearly does, and he's acting accordingly.

America has enough enemies in the world that we don't need to make another one out of Russia. And as an American, I don't see any real reason that the United States and Russia can't be allies, rather than enemies. But that doesn't matter; Putin quite clearly thinks otherwise, and that is the only thing that matters. Russia sees the West as a threat, and they are treating us (and the Western-allied Georgia) accordingly. This is not just Russia vs. Georgia, this is Russia vs. Georgia + EU + USA. And the question is, what are the EU and the USA going to do about it? The last thing the United States needs is more conflict and war, of course. But appeasing tyrants is generally not a good move, either.

No shit! (3, Interesting)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542671)

"In what seems to be a repeat of what happened in July, a few news sites have mentioned that there is evidence of a campaign against Georgia."

A campaign against Georgia? You don't say! What tipped you off, the explosions? The Black Sea Fleet moving off the coast? The miles-long military convoys crossing into Georgian territory? The planes dropping bombs in populations centers?

Oh, the IP logs. Can't have a real war until Netcraft confirms it, I s'pose.

Re:No shit! (2, Funny)

OctaviusIII (969957) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543443)

Sorry, what? There's a war? I was just watching CNN and all they had on was John Edward's affair... no, wait, I think there's something in the news crawl... "Russia invades Georgia/Governor recalls National Guard/Declares 'I had no idea!'"

Huh, go figure.

Great Jokes (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542677)

Everyone is making fun of the invasion of a democratic country?

Thats slashdot for ya i guess. Depends on which country does the invading.

This is nothing... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542723)

You should've seen Slashdot at the start of the war of northern aggression back in 1861.

Re:Great Jokes (1)

DaveAtFraud (460127) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542899)

Everyone is making fun of the invasion of a democratic country?

Thats slashdot for ya i guess. Depends on which country does the invading.

Nah. But just see how many people here get upset if you cut off their access to pirated pr0n, movies and tunes or even threaten the possibility.

Cheers,
Dave

Re:Great Jokes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542961)

true, but at least nobody's broken out the 'In mother Russia' jokes yet...

Re:Great Jokes (1)

Just because I'm an (847583) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543057)

I'm in this purely for the pedantry so brushing the horror of war aside... ahem... may I ask why you used the word "democratic" here?

I would have assumed, perhaps falsely, that the invasion of any soverign country by another, whether monarchy, dictatorship, oligarchy or whatever else is inherently wrong.

One can try to justify it, of course, by saying magic words like "WMD", or "they did it first, we're just retaliating", "they're evil, we're good", "if we don't kill a few of them now many more will die later"... really the options are endless. Sometimes perhaps even justified.

Basically I'm wondering whether you believe it's OK to make fun of invasions of non-democratic countries?

While I'm bothering to post. How democratic is democratic enough... would Zimbabwe qualify for example? Technically Robert Mugabe was democratically elected. The whole beating people to death if they planned to vote for Morgan Changarai (sp?) taints the process but really it's about where the line is. Finding people willing to say that the opposition leader is homosexual (Anwar Ibrahim of Malaysia.. twice!) [nytimes.com] is a less physical approach but potentially equally damaging to the democratic process.

Of course if true you could argue it is of benefit to the public to be familiar with all the facts... no doubt this is why many governments are loosening the freedom of information rules about sitting members. No wait... the other thing...

How long before this method [digg.com] is applied in political campaigns, if it isn't already, in the western world.

I'm going to get modded offtopic aren't I?...

Re:Great Jokes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543117)

Let us not forget about a bigger bully [usa.gov] invading a sovereign nation and murdering tens of thousands of innocent civilians.

Re:Great Jokes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543219)

Actually, those "innocent civilians" murdered each other, for the most part. American troops were a minor annoyance to Iraqis killing other Iraqis.

Re:Great Jokes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543337)

If it's democratic, how come the current leader deposed the last leader in a coup? Doesn't sound that democratic to me.

Re:Great Jokes (1)

lord_sarpedon (917201) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543499)

Everyone is making fun of the invasion of a democratic^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H country?

Fixed.

Let's not that pretend form of government in any way dictates quality.

Organized crime (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542685)

So they claim that the RBN was doing russian government will? That is (government's) organized crime, Discworld version.

Is not the same to have a group of people that believing government sponsorized news decide by their own to cyber-attack a country, to being hired by or belong to the government to do that.

Re:Organized crime (1)

kaos07 (1113443) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542859)

What's the difference between the government and the Mafia?

One of them is organised.

Re:Organized crime (1)

jsfs (1329511) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542943)

That is the question, isn't it? Whether or not the hackers got special advance notice of the attack, and whether or not their government "encouraged" them to hack another country's infrastructure. Given that the attack on the servers happened before the physical attack - and before anyone would have good occasion to look up Georgian sites in particular, not to mention hack them - it doesn't look especially good for Russia's plausible deniability.

Welcome to the New G-Mail, Tavarisch (1)

TheModelEskimo (968202) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542699)

Dude, when the Georgian President realizes that he can't retrieve all of his data from the Google cloud, he's going to be so P.O.'d.

about conflict between Russia and Georgia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542729)

Putin: I have Georgia on my mind.......

Go Georgia! (2, Insightful)

mi (197448) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542745)

Time to root for the little country trying to get its own territory back under its own control.

Puting's claims of "genocide" [bbc.co.uk] are pathetic and would only work on the already brainwashed Russians [libertyforum.org] themselves. Seeing these assholes trumpet their government's lies is just as scary as seeing Chinese bloggers' anti-Tibet postings [slashdot.org] .

They are trying to paint South Osetia as some sort of Kosovo, where the evil Georgians deserve to be punished the same way Serbians did. Except, unlike then, there is no genocide or "ethnic cleansing" (Saakashvili is much smart than that), and no country was giving Kosovars their citizenship left and right so as to be able to pretend, they are defending their own citizens. Lots and lots of South Osetian have gotten Russian citizenship in recent years — just for asking. Imagine, for just a second, America trying to annex Iraq this way — we would not even force Puerto Rico [wikipedia.org] in!

If US is not careful, next year Russia will come up with a "good" claim to send tanks to Brighton Beach [wikipedia.org] — plenty of Russian citizens there!..

Re:Go Georgia! (2, Informative)

velen (1198819) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542823)

The territory claimed independence back in 1991. Kinda late to stake claim to it again, don't you think?

Re:Go Georgia! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542831)

So how much the Georgians are paying you with the White sex slaves and the opium they traffic into Europe?
Georgians are criminals, and they decimated more than 30000 Ossetians. Besides all the drug trafficking and prostitution rings they run with girls that are younger than 12 years old.
So, or you are a pathetic criminal scum like them, or you are being paid by them, and should get hunted and killed like they will surely be!

Re:Go Georgia! (5, Interesting)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542851)

Actually, the closest thing to genocide in Kosovo occurred after NATO moved in and the Serbs were ethnically cleansed from most of it. What happened before that was actually very similar to what's happening in South Ossetia, a minority in a defined territory seeking independence and resorting to military means to achieve it with the help of a foreign power. Just replace Russia with USA and the parallels are very clear. As we now know, the atrocities of the Serbs in crushing that rebellion were much exaggerated by the western media and as the UN court recently acknowledged there was no genocide or ethnic cleansing involved. Actually the percentage of Albanians in Kosovo killed during all the years of Milosevic rule was smaller than the percentage of South Ossetians killed in just couple of days of Georgian attack.

Note: not saying that what happened in Kosovo was all right by any means, my point is that the parallels between the two situations are entirely justified and they expose hypocrisy by the west. There is hypocrisy in the Russian position as well but at least they pay a lip service to preservation of territorial integrity (as per international law) in both cases.

Re:Go Georgia! (1)

hjrnunes (1135957) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543183)

Yeah well the Bear is making it's move. And while everybody is busy with olympics - and more - in China, Russia keeps pulling it's strings. My guess is we're soon to have another power to rise. And it's not China. It's Russia. Again. The big bear is waking up back from it's recovery sleep. Only this time it isn't red. It's grey. Adapted to modern politics, armed with all kinds of democracy, genocide and freedom vocabularies. And no one can do nothing about it... They are playing it by our rules. And that's something the West should worry about... A corrupt, capitalist, democratic Russia...

Re:Go Georgia! (1)

cyrill_grk (971692) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543213)

If we have to - we will obviously send! I just wonder - destroying Iraque was a _normal_ behaviour of USA. You're idiot... sorry for this word :(

Re:Go Georgia! (1)

Vexorian (959249) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543239)

Yeah, I mean no big power should ever invade a little country. Oh , unless we are the big country and are chasing a terrorist, even though we wouldn't even find the terrorist there...

There are no good guys in this war. (5, Interesting)

tetromino (807969) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543311)

This may be hard for an American mind to grasp, but *there are no good guys here*.

Georgians are not good guys. Their goal is to militarily crush a national independence movement and to subjugate a people who hate the Georgians' guts. They've been planning this blitzkrieg operation for years (a nation doesn't increase its military spending by a factor of 30 if they aren't planning to invade somebody.) They cynically violated ceasefire terms, used massed artillery to bombard residential areas (killing ~1400 Ossetian civilians in one day), and were ethnically cleansing Ossetian villages. Now that their military effort has failed, they've launched a massive propaganda offensive to convince ignorant westerners that white is black and that a nation that launched an offensive war is somehow a victim.

But Russians ain't good guys either. Instead of trying to limit the killing, it looks like they are escalating the conflict by supporting the Abkhazians in Kodori. They are cynically using the excuse of protecting Ossetians from genocide to conduct a massive bombing campaign against Georgia's military infrastructure. And Russia has neither the desire nor the technological capability to limit collateral damage from its bombs.

What you are seeing is, essentially, a small bully being bullied by a bigger bully.

Re:There are no good guys in this war. (3, Interesting)

BillyGee (981263) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543503)

Weeeelll....actually it's more like Russia has been planning this for years. Those Ossetian peaceniks you talk about opened fire across the "border" at Georgian villages, knowing Georgia had vowed to protect their territory. Of course they wouldn't have done this without knowing Russia had an invasion plan ready.

Or do you really believe a country whose leadership insists that "we can't control this, our volunteers have taken action", while fighter jets and bombers are flying about and tank columns are rolling in.

The best "proof" for anything is Russia's continued threats to all of its neighbours, whether to attack the Czech Republic or Poland over any planned missile shield, attack Georgia if they dared join NATO, attack the Baltic States for pretty much the same reason as Georgia now - "mistreatment" of russian citizens living there.

Russia is trying to set a precedent here - if our citizens are living in another sovereign nation, we reserve the right to use military force to act in their interest. While the good folks of Brighton Beach likely don't have much to worry about, Russia's neighbouring countries do.

Re:There are no good guys in this war. (3, Insightful)

tetromino (807969) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543591)

No, Russia was not planning this for years - primarily because this war significantly weakens Russia's position. Russia's main goal is to keep Georgia out of NATO. To do so, all it had to do was sponsor the Ossetian and Abkhazian independence movements (nations with unrecognized de-facto independent provinces are not allowed to be NATO members). But now that Russia has sent an army brigade into South Ossetia, the Ossetian independence movement no longer looks genuine (some Western observers have compared it to a Russian land-grab), and as a result, there is now a good chance that Georgia will be let into NATO. Given that starting this war would make it much harder to achieve Russia's foreign policy goals, do you really think Russia would have wanted to start it?

The invasion of Ossetia was a very shrewd move on Georgia's part. Massive military retaliation was the least bad of several bad response moves that Russia had at its disposal.

Re:Go Georgia! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543511)

I'm sorry, but WHY bombing Serbia to "protect" "innocent" albanians in Kosowo is "right", and trying to protect osetinian people is wrong? Pay attention, that S.Osetia had "de facto" independence from 1992, and until Georgians got US weapons and training they have not tried to attack it. Kosowo had not any indepence. Or, why "liberating" Kosowo is "good" and deliberating Serbska Kraina (Serbian republic in Kroatia) is good too?

Oh, of course there is Afganistan and Iraq. Why Soviet Union got "Evil empire" tag for invading Afganistan, and US leaded mission in same place is "giving freedom to Afgan people"?

When I read articles on bbc.co.uk about "Russian invasion" I read a lot about refugees, but why they dont write that these are Osetian people who flee from Georgian soldiers? Making impression, that they flee from peacekeepers.

Re:Go Georgia! (2, Informative)

c0sine (959434) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543715)

What own territory? Osetia is de-facto independent country since 1992. You are afraid of next year Russian ride? Well, let's see what US was doing in Georgia since 2002: military training and aid, CIA presence, etc. Any comments on that, Mr. So-Smart-Man?

Lithuanian President's Website (4, Informative)

Jophiel04 (1341463) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542815)

Gotta give credit to the Presidents of Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, and Poland. They may be small nations, but they talk like they've got a pair...

http://www.president.lt/en/news.full/9475 [president.lt] [Joint Press Release on the Lithuanian President's Webpage]

I know it's not so slashdotty, but it's relevant to the conflict in general and interesting nonetheless.

Re:Lithuanian President's Website (2, Interesting)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 5 years ago | (#24542895)

Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, and Poland -- where have I seen this list before?

Oh, that's right, it's the list of countries that had sucking up to US and taking political potshots at Russia as the cornerstone of their foreign policy since 1991. With such famous successes as celebrating Estonian Nazi volunteers (Estonia, obviously), providing torture camps for their new American friends (Poland), harassing Russians traveling between a small Russian exclave accessible only through their territory and the rest of Russia (Lithuania) and other similarly glorious achievements.

Re:Lithuanian President's Website (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543071)

I guess every day in your life since the collapse of the Soviet Union has been a day that someone pissed in your Wheaties, eh Comrade?

Just keep checking your drops. Maybe there'll be a message from your handler one of these days.

Re:Lithuanian President's Website (1)

Dramacrat (1052126) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543281)

The funnyman leader of Georgia chose the perfect time to attempt to shell the hell out of South Ossetia's capital, what with the world's attention being on China ATM, and then immediately after whine mightily about how unfair it was that Russia was 'starting a war' when Russian military and irregular forces rightly came to the defence of the Ossetians.

4chan? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542825)

So.... 4chan is in Georgia?

Re: Translation (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24542847)

Good translation, and thanks for the twitters.
The person also mentions that protesters are out in Tbilisi, notwithstanding Russian bombing runs, that Russian hackers are attacking any news site that relates what is really going on in Georgia, that he has asked some hacker friends to attack CMI (rough translation of a Russian news site) and they have (seemingly) complied, that he hears rumblings - the light has been knocked out, as well as telephone towers and no TV exists now, and finally asks for humanity to help. He provides a link to bombed out suburbs, here: http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/44907000/jpg/_44907206_rubbleafp466.jpg.

Agree - congestion more likely than attack (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543005)

Last I checked, when hunting down a malicious access attempt against a site of mine, the Georgian President's site is hosted on a shared server, with about 100 other sites.

And it sits, if memory serves, at the end of a traceroute about 1 mile long, on what looked like a very flaky connection even during normal days. Any 'attack' is more likely the connection into Georgia being loved to death than attacked.

If you are on a narrow pipe, as the Georgians seem to be, a Japanese teenager with a 50MBPs home connection can cause you problems, let alone all the journalists of the world and other rubber-neckers wanting to visit.

We've been discussing the war (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543139)

We've been discussing this and other things involved with the war over at StupidSheeple.com [stupidsheeple.com]

Can't believe the cable news stations aren't covering what might very well be the opening shots of world war 3.

since i got modded down twice by faggots (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543197)

i may as well troll since the moderation system is broken around here. cmdrdildo only allows complete fags to have mod points.

the night was dark.
a scream was heard.
a man got killed
by a flying turd.

shove this fag fest up your ass cmdrbitch.

YUO FAIL IT? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543203)

In adition, racist? How is Lost its earlier

yeah, i kick ass (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24543317)

nigger

A fifth column called the mob? (1)

D4C5CE (578304) | more than 5 years ago | (#24543367)

Years ago I witnessed the comparatively clumsy and easily traceable assimilation of a major university's computing center into the botnet of organized crime from two countries now known as major spam havens and phishers' hideouts.

The appropriate authorities were alerted to the danger of this becoming a national security risk as growing sophistication on the part of the perpetrators, if not held at bay early on, would allow them to wreak havoc on critical infrastructures "at their fingertips", as the bot herders came in control of an SaaS cyber-weapon marketable to governments and factions around the world wishing to outsource their dirty work to guns-for-hire.

Needless to say, none of the evidence was thoroughly scrutinized back then before countries could start to make computer crime a branch of their armed forces, and the matter stayed under the officials' radar as a mere annoyance of unsolicited advertising and occasional blackmail of gambling sites, rather than the build-up of a dangerous distributed remote-controlled arsenal.
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