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Report Links Russian Intelligence Agencies To Cyber Attacks

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the send-spike-beep-bloop-spike-sent dept.

Security 57

narramissic writes "A report released Friday by a group of cyber-security experts from greylogic finds it is very likely that the Foreign Military Intelligence agency (the GRU) and Federal Security Service (the FSB) directed cyber attacks on Georgian government servers in July and August of 2008. 'Following a complex web of connections, the report claims that an Internet service provider connected with the Stopgeorgia.ru web site, which coordinated the Georgian attacks, is located next door to a Russian Ministry of Defense Research Institute called the Center for Research of Military Strength of Foreign Countries, and a few doors down from GRU headquarters.' But Paul Ferguson, a researcher with Trend Micro who has reviewed the report, says it's a 'bit of a stretch' to conclude that the Georgia attacks were state-sponsored. 'You can connect dots to infer things, but inferring things does not make them so,' he said. One other interesting allegation in the report is that a member of the Whackerz Pakistan hacking group, which claimed responsibility for defacing the Indian Eastern Railway Web site on Dec. 24, 2008, is employed by a North American wireless communications company and presents an 'insider threat' for his employer."

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cyber ATTACKS? I guess... (3, Insightful)

gravos (912628) | more than 5 years ago | (#27276919)

Well, cyber ATTACKS might be a bit overstated. I've been following the news fairly closely and as far as I can tell there's not been much aside from cyber VANDALISM. No major infrastructure has been destroyed, hospital operations have not been impeded, etc... It's just government and related websites that have been defaced and while that can interfere with productivity to some extent, it's hardly akin to warfare.

Re:cyber ATTACKS? I guess... (1)

Seriousity (1441391) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277513)

Heh, typical media blowing things out of proportion... Remember the cybercriminal hyperactivities [efluxmedia.com] that exploited Obama's victory? I wonder if they've prescribed the cybercriminals Ritalin [wikipedia.org] for their hyperactivities...

Re:cyber ATTACKS? I guess... (1)

dov_0 (1438253) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277953)

Didn't Georgia kinda bypass Cheques etc and just go straight to electronic banking? That was a lot of the attack. Banks. The country could have been completely crippled.

IT WAS THE ONE-ARMED MAN (1)

DJCacophony (832334) | more than 5 years ago | (#27276927)

If they're ballsy enough to launch a physical attack on another country, annex territory, and dare the international community to do something about it, they're ballsy enough to sponsor some hackers.

That's peanuts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27278189)

Well, they're still not audacious enough to invade another country, occupy it and call the whole process "liberation".

I warned everybody against this (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27276929)

I have always said that that guy with the blue car who lives on the corner near Castle street is a spy. I once saw him swearing at a cat in a funny language that was not American. I love Jesus. It is hard when nobody listens to you and then the government is like "yeah, whatever" and the mailman is ugly and mean. I love Jesus and Christenea Aguilira.

Re:I warned everybody against this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27277097)

I love Jesus and Christenea Aguilira.

Aha! Got you now, commie spy!

Re:I warned everybody against this (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27285273)

Jesus loves you, too, but he's the only one.

Not *that* much of a stretch (2, Insightful)

PapayaSF (721268) | more than 5 years ago | (#27276957)

Come on, of course it was state-sponsored. Russia clearly had the most motive of any country, and has a government with authoritarian leanings and a track record of things like assassinating critics. But set aside motive/means/opportunity and look at it this way: does anyone really believe that in today's Russia someone could mount a large, sustained cyber attack on a neighboring country without the government knowing about it? Does anyone think that Russia couldn't have stopped the attacks if they'd wanted to? It was just unconventional warfare with plausible deniability.

Re:Not *that* much of a stretch (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27277227)

Come on, of course it was state-sponsored. Russia clearly had the most motive of any country, and has a government with authoritarian leanings and a track record of things like assassinating critics. But set aside motive/means/opportunity and look at it this way: does anyone really believe that in today's Russia someone could mount a large, sustained cyber attack on a neighboring country without the government knowing about it? Does anyone think that Russia couldn't have stopped the attacks if they'd wanted to? It was just unconventional warfare with plausible deniability.

Hold on there pilgrim. Don't be rashly jumping to no conclusions.

Plausible deniability goes a long ways here on Slashdot. I mean after all, they're Russians so they're given the benefit of the doubt. Now if it was Americans being blamed then yeah, for sure, almost everyone on Slashdot would immediately concur that they were guilty without question.

When American police do something shady then the condemnation and outcry on Slashdot is instant and near universal. But when Russian secret police pick up a critic of the Russian government at the airport and fifteen minutes later he's found dying in front of a hospital with a bullet hole in his head, well that's clearly a situation where Slashdotters don't want to jump to any hasty, unwarranted conclusions.

Please mod parent up Re:Not *that* much of a st... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27279399)

And metamods that's no troll it's bang on target.

Re:Not *that* much of a stretch (2, Insightful)

NorQue (1000887) | more than 5 years ago | (#27279377)

Bollocks. *Why* should the government of Russia know about any "cyber attacks" any more than any other government? They have a magic glass ball that tells em that? Americans have no idea about who's behind most of the big botnets themselves and they invented the internet. How should Russia know any more than the US American government?

Re:Not *that* much of a stretch (2, Insightful)

JAlexoi (1085785) | more than 5 years ago | (#27283839)

You are enormously OVERESTIMATING Russian gov'ts power. It's probably has no more influence, than Afghanistan's gov't has influence over Afghanistan.

Russia wants its republics back (1)

hessian (467078) | more than 5 years ago | (#27286955)

Russia wants former Soviet territories back.

Of course, Russian rule in the Baltics -- Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia -- was so oppressive that these nations are resisting to the death. Russian rule destroyed their prosperity, wounded their culture, and resulted in many of their intellectuals and leaders being killed. They are ethnically and culturally different from their Slavic neighbors.

Russia will continue this kind of passive-aggressive pseudo-warfare (hah, take that, internet pseudo-intellectuals) in order to provoke a conflict which enables them to storm in and seize more lands.

I can't blame Russia. That's how you get to be a superpower.

Oh no (3, Insightful)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | more than 5 years ago | (#27276987)

Why would the enemy government's websites not be legitimate targets in a war?

Re:Oh no (1)

magores (208594) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277061)

agreed. Seems like it would be an obvious tactic to use against obvious targets

Re:Oh no (1)

TheBrainchildGroup (1495665) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277299)

Excellent point! I think you're 100% correct in noting that it is.

Re:Oh no (5, Insightful)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277397)

When it's not a legitimate war.

Re:Oh no (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27277865)

When it's not a legitimate war.

There is no such thing. We have always been at war with Eurasia. War is perpetual.

Re:Oh no (1)

JAlexoi (1085785) | more than 5 years ago | (#27283847)

WOW! A new oxymoron "legitimate war". Probably Hitler thought that WW2 was very much legitimate.

Re:Oh no (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 5 years ago | (#27284231)

WOW! A new oxymoron "legitimate war". Probably Hitler thought that WW2 was very much legitimate.

I'm not sure what Hitler has to do with all this, unless you're clumsily trying to Godwin the thread. Regardless, a war can perfectly well be legitimate according to international law. It is legitimate in two cases:

  1. It is a war of defense, when another party has initiated the aggression
  2. It is sanctioned by the UN Security Council (e.g. UN forces in Korean War).

Note that, according to these principles, a war is defined as war of aggression taking into account UN-recognized state boundaries. That is, internal struggle (such as a civil war) is not a war of aggression; on the other hand, armed intervention on either side of such an internal conflict by another state is a war of aggression.

Re:Oh no (3, Insightful)

Gorshkov (932507) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277947)

Anything of the opposing government would be a legitimate target, yes.
But how VALUABLE a target would it be? I'm guessing that in the middle of a foreign invasion, few citizens are going to be trying to visit a govt website to try to find out how much they have to pay for rover's dog license, renew their driver's license, or get another copy of their birth certificate.

Is is possible, or plausible, that the Russian govt was involved? Yes, absolutely.

Is it LIKELY that they were involved? I doubt it. When you're invading a foreign country, you have much more important things to worry about than disrupting people's ability to find out when the next school holiday is.

I would think that the people here would be very well aware of just how much damage can be done by a group of bored script kiddies.

Re:Oh no (1)

JAlexoi (1085785) | more than 5 years ago | (#27283887)

Taking into account that Gorgians were living with Russians side by side for a good part of the last 500 years, no one in Georgia(except Saakashvili) really had any issues with the plausible occupied future. So it is perfectly plausible that a lot of people actually did get their licenses renewed and taxes payed and so on and so forth.

Re:Oh no (1)

Gorshkov (932507) | more than 5 years ago | (#27284193)

no one in Georgia(except Saakashvili) really had any issues with the plausible occupied future

No issues means no war - so it's pretty obvious that you're missing something there.

Yes, there are a lot of ties - but there is also a lot of historical enmity.

So it is perfectly plausible that a lot of people actually did get their licenses renewed and taxes payed and so on and so forth.

You missed the entire point of my post. The services the government offers via the internet are not in any way important in dealing with an invasion. Do you really think that the command & control structure of the Georgian government was dependant on whether or not you could access the website of the Department of Education, or the Tourism Board?

There is nothing about, or on, ANY government website that's important with regards to an active, foreign invasion ... and therefore no need or reason to disrupt it on the part of the invading forces.

Twisty passages (4, Funny)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | more than 5 years ago | (#27276997)

You are likely to be eaten by a GRU...

In Russia... (2, Funny)

djupedal (584558) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277009)

You don't connect the dots...

The dots connect you.

Re:In Russia... (1)

Higgs_Bozon (1506197) | more than 5 years ago | (#27285839)

I, for one, bow to our new Russian ov... oh, wait!

This is news why? (2, Interesting)

guacamole (24270) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277055)

Russian security establishment might have been behind the attacks on Georgian infrastructure during a brief but violent war between these two countries when hundreds of people were dying. Is this supposed to be shocking news?

Re:This is news why? (2, Funny)

microbee (682094) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277169)

Agreed. I DEMAND news about ethnic cleansing as usual!!!

Re:This is news why? (1)

F0RR (1464631) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277197)

So say we all!

Re:This is news why? (1)

GregNorc (801858) | more than 5 years ago | (#27279149)

I find it interesting they basically used them for low level psy-ops. Basically the modern equivalet of dropping pamphlets.

I mean, imagine what damage they could have done if they attacked say, their power supply? While 24 made me want to throw something at my TV this season with their insinuations that one computer controls an entire nation's power grid, sometimes critical systems are accessible via the internet [wikipedia.org] .

Huh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27277305)

Seems like they've been focusing their efforts on attacking OSDN tonight.

They are just doing their frickin' jobs . . . (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277609)

. . . they are spies, they are supposed to be spying. What else do you expect them to do? Tend to the gardens at Lenin's tomb?

If these spies were being controlled by the late Lavrentiy Pavlovich Beria and Kim Philby, . . . well, *that* would be news!

Who needs cyberattacks.. (1)

sw155kn1f3 (600118) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277647)

... if you can drive 100s T-72s over the border and kill them all? This is ridiculous. Can't compare the damage.

Oh noes, we have a cyberwar gap! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27277769)

Remmeber, citizens, we are at war.

We have always been at war with USSR^WNorth Korea^W^WVietnam^WIran^WIraq^WRussia^WChina^W????. Oh fuck it, we are at war with everybody, all the time.

Remember this citizens. Devote yourselves to overcoming our inifinitely powerful enemies, who wish to destroy the American Way of Life(TM). Your Economy^WCountry Needs You.

fago8Z (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27277847)

Ah Ha!!! (1)

pulse2600 (625694) | more than 5 years ago | (#27277943)

Boris, now we can finally put an end to Moose and Squirrel!!!

bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27277979)

full load of bullshit
at example: ///Foreign Military Intelligence agency (the GRU)
Main Intelligence Directorate of the Russian Armed Forces General Staff. The full name is GRU GSh (GRU Generalnovo Shtaba (or "GenShtaba"), i.e. "GRU of the General Staff").

Like this is a surprise? (3, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#27278257)

The cold war never ended for either China or Russia. Both are still engaged in it. We (as in all citizens; not just the wests) just keep hoping for something different. China has moved the war to economic at this time, but is quietly building up nuke subs, as well as space based weapons. On the economic front, they have tied their money to the dollar, and the Euro. In addition, they have selective trade barriers. Basically, Japan is their largest import because they are hoping that in the future they will control them one way or another. Even now, they are pushing to be allowed to NOT have to control their CO2 or other pollution, while they expect all others in the west to control theirs (That is why I still say drop the cap/trade and move to a time incremental VAT tax on ALL goods based on Pollution).

Russia has EU by their energy demands. The best thing that EU could do is move off gas heating and power and move to geo-thermal HVAC. That would drop their MAIN dependency on Russia. In addition, it would stimulate their economy quickly. By moving to electric, then they can change out the production rather quickly to say Solar Thermal backed up by natural gas (later with thermal storage), Wind, geo-thermal, tidal (very possible in EU because of the high coastline to area ratio), etc and nukes.

The cold war never ended? (2, Insightful)

rs232 (849320) | more than 5 years ago | (#27279747)

"The cold war never ended for either China or Russia. Both are still engaged in it. We (as in all citizens; not just the wests) just keep hoping for something different"

It really did, some Neocons in the US administration, being nostalgic for the old days, are attempting to bring it back by provoking the Russians by putting missiles in Poland and US airbases in Kyrgyzstan.

The US promised the Russians that if they went capitalist, NATO would not expand east and the former Eastern block countries wouldn't join the EU. In both matters they lied. Now you've got a pissed off Russia with Putin in charge.

Re:The cold war never ended? (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#27279979)

Well, I agree with you somewhat about Russia. I think that W/neo-cons HAVE provoked. But those missles really are not about Russia (or iran to be honest).

Re:The cold war never ended? (1)

JAlexoi (1085785) | more than 5 years ago | (#27283957)

Apparently it's not the neo-cons according to Michael Hudson: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3pwAFohWBL4 [youtube.com]
And it's not EU, it's possibilities of NATO bases. And literally, before the radar station and interceptor missiles, NATO has not been more than an irritation. The biggest problem is Sevastopol.

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 5 years ago | (#27280227)

Russia has EU by their energy demands. The best thing that EU could do is move off gas heating and power and move to geo-thermal HVAC. That would drop their MAIN dependency on Russia. In addition, it would stimulate their economy quickly. By moving to electric, then they can change out the production rather quickly to say Solar Thermal backed up by natural gas (later with thermal storage), Wind, geo-thermal, tidal (very possible in EU because of the high coastline to area ratio), etc and nukes.

The best thing EU can do is move to nuclear. Given that France has a lot of experience in that area, it seems entirely reasonable. It is very sad to hear that those brain-damaged Greens in Germany have instead succeeded in pushing through the dismantling of their reactors.

Remember, if you keep using gas and oil in Europe today, you support Putin. If you advocate replacement of those with alternative energy sources, doubly so. Bear that in mind next time you vote for your local Greens (of course, checking their published program first - not all of them are anti-nuclear - but most still are).

Re:Like this is a surprise? (2, Insightful)

guacamole (24270) | more than 5 years ago | (#27282985)

The cold war never ended for either China or Russia. Both are still engaged in it.

The cold war never ended because we are engaging them. We sold weapons to Taiwan against China's objections. We have military bases in Korea, Japan, Vietnam who knows where else. Our navy ships and air force send out their patrols as close as about 100-200miles off Chinese coast. As long as such activity persists on the US part, China has a full moral right to arm itself to teeth. With regards to CO2 emissions, China's _per capita_ emissions are still like 1/5th of the US number. I am all for cap and trade, but China should be allowed a quota of about 3-5 times of the US one based on total population.

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#27285337)

Wow. Just wow. Where to start?
  1. We did sell weapons to Taiwan. But when did that occur? Only after China built a WHOLE LOT OF NEW WEAPONS and POINTED THEM AT TAIWAN. Basically, once China put in an overwhelming amount of arsenol, then we sold them.
  2. We have a base in Vietnam? Really? I could have sworn that we pulled out of there in 1975, do not even have an embassy there. Please show me the info about out base there.
  3. Yes, our intelligence ships DO travel within 100 miles of their coast. Why do you think that is? Think that it might have something to do with INTERNATIONAL LAW THAT SAYS THAT IT IS LEGAL? Perhaps the fact that China sends intel ships to 100 miles off OUR SHORES might have something to do with it? Or do you not realize that they have large fishing ships that come here to "fish", but when we do coast guard inspections of them, we do not notice that there is large untapped space that nobody can get to? Or how about the fancy antenna's on top? BTW, their "fishing" ships get MUCH closer than 100 miles. Why is it ok for CHina to do this even closer, but not for America?
  4. They can arm all they want. So must we. That is why we have not flown the F-22 in Iraq. Likewise, think there is a reason why we are getting real friendly with India? In addition, I find it amazing how ppl claim that America is doing space weapons, while China is the one who is putting up 2 different version of space stations; 1 ran by their military, but for "civilian" use, while another set of them will be ran PURELY by their military.
  5. Funny. You speak in the plural sense of an American, but your garbage is just that; garbage. You object to CO2, but think that China should be allowed to increase, while the rest of the world decreases? You are one twisted individual. Personally, I am pushing for a VAT on all MANUFACTURED GOODS based on carbon and pollution. That includes imported goods.

For a guy who pretends to be American, how can you think that China is correct all the time, while America is 100% wrong? You seem to think that global warming is an issue, but find no issue with China increasing theirs significantly, even though they are number 1 in pollution and carbon emissions.

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

Xest (935314) | more than 4 years ago | (#27295597)

There's a fatal flaw in the China part of your conspiracy theory.

The Chinese army is constantly busy trying to keep it's own citizenship oppressed enough not to rebel. If China dared send it's armed forces abroad to fight a war then it'd lose massive chunks of territory to dissidents - Taiwan and Nepal being the most obvious, but there are a lot of other areas and groups who are repressed by the Chinese and would love such an opportunity to rebel, the muslim areas are a good start.

China also has border disputes with India and Russia who would similarly love the opportunity to resolve those if China left the door open by sending it's troops away, India of course has all the traits you mention too and nearly as many people living there but is absolutely not an ally of China.

China as a threat is a red herring, it's use to stir up fear, but the reality is the only thing China is fighting for is survival in it's current incarnation, it's industrial progress is related to this in that the Chinese government realises there'll be a lot more dissidents if it can modernise and give them Western style lifestyles. To worry about China as a threat to anyone outside China though is ignorant of the reality of the situation there.

Russia however, I agree with you on.

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 4 years ago | (#27297189)

China is working heavily on Space Weapons and new Nukes (sub, missiles and planes). Their spying in the west has really changed over the last decade. Back then it was industrial espionage. Now, it is about how we make our weapons. For grins, lets assume that you were right. Why put in space 1 civilian space station (ran by their military), and then a series of military only space stations? What purpose does the MOS for the military have? Only the ability to re-configure new weapons at will. Otherwise a regular sat is far more suited for a military operation. Likewise, they are now building 2-4 new nuke subs EACH YEAR. Nobody is certain how many more hulls are started since the construction is now underground in a new hidden sub base. Why not do this in the opening? Their space budget apparently does not reflect what they announce publicly. The fact that a series of new military only space station are being built and was not part of their budget should say that a LOT more is going on then meets the eye. Right now, Chinas DOD budget it though to be double what USs is, even though we are in 2 separate wars.
In addition, they have been quietly beefing up forces in the Himalayas (which is where the vast majority of Indias water comes from) while trying hard to agitate the east Indians. Of course, India is aware of that, and moving more towards western ties.

I have little doubt that the average Chinese Civilian is no different than you, me , or anybody else in the world. Problem is that the Chinese gov is NOT the same critter. They have much bigger aspirations, than just control of China. More important, they have a coming issue with imbalance in the sexes, coming water shortages, major pollution problems, etc.

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

Xest (935314) | more than 4 years ago | (#27298041)

China has to maintain a military because of it's border disputes with Russia and India and because it has unstable neighbours (Burma, North Korea) and also because it wants a deterrent to the US if it tries to aid Taiwan in becoming independent.

But no matter what arsenal they're building up that doesn't detract from the fact sending their forces outside their own borders would be suicide because they would lose so much home territory. Even if China wanted to invade other nations it couldn't, simply for that fact. There are too many people under Chinese rule that would love to overthrow the government and make their territory independent.

I'm not sure who you think China would even declare war on, to attack a major force such as Russia, Europe, the US, Nato or some similar body they'd not only risk losing territory but would be left so weak at home their own leadership would be left vulnerable. Even an attack on a smaller nation would provoke support from these major powers too. Even with all that, the Chinese military is still dated and weak compared to the US, Europe and even the soon to be modernised Russia (who are also re-arming now).

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 4 years ago | (#27298651)

Actually, China now has more boomers AND attack subs than all of EU with more on the way. Only Russia and US have more. They bought an aircraft carrier from Russia claiming that they were going to turn it into a casino, but have instead used it for their military; basically they have started constructing one (that we know of). They are converting their nuke warheads to neutrons (good for killing ppl but leaving infrastructure in place). As I mentioned earlier, their military is moving into space in a BIG way, while at the same time claiming that they want to prohibit space weapons. Total BS on that one.
Lets assume that you are correct and that this is about nothing more than protecting "their" area (personally, I do not see Taiwan as being theirs, but....) as well as defeating their own ppl. Then why do a massive build-up and have it geared around FAR attacks, not close defense? Even now, they are cutting a deal with Venezuela which involves putting forward bases there. Ok, we have ours in Korea and Japan so we can not say much, but this shows that China is not about defense. Far from it. They are about to project power elsewhere. In fact, I would say that the westernization was PARTIALLY about keeping their citizens in check, but also about building up a modern defense to take on the west.

Who to attack? Lots of places. And I seriously doubt that we, or others in the west will protect them (except where we already have agreements in place such as Taiwan; though keep in mind that Taiwan, now, has a VERY china friendly leader ). I am also not convinced that they will lose control of their citizens. They have control of their network, and control how ppl communicate. With a booming economy, ppl are far too busy trying to beat the Jones, that they do not care as much about their gov (who apparently, is becoming less and less intrusive in everyday life of the average Chinese). Heck, look at how the US acted when we were "attacked". We backed total IDIOTs, even to the point of putting us in Iraq, with ppl like W and Rumsfeld in charge. Heck, even now, they are currently claiming that our spying more than 100 miles off-shore is illegal, when in fact, international law allows. Heck, they are spying on us at our DOCKS via their fishing boats. But their gov lies about it to their own ppl which is setting the stage for future war.

Lets leave military alone. When we gave them MFN status, it was with the agreement that they would drop their trade barriers in 2004 AND free up their money. The barriers are still in place and they now use a "basket" which their gov controls to keep it relative to the dollar and euro (if euro rise against dollar, then so will yuan). Basically, their trade is designed to bleed us dry. Oddly, I do not blame China for this. I blame W for not enforcing that. But he was far more interested in having Chinese silence of his Iraqi occupation. But CHina is not interested in 2 way trade. They want control. First by economics, next by threat of military, and if needed, by direct action.

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

Xest (935314) | more than 4 years ago | (#27299467)

I'm not really sure why you think that China is better equipped than Europe, see here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_of_the_European_Union#Member_States.27_military_spending [wikipedia.org]

You'll see Europe's military spending dwarfs that of Chinas with only the US above it. Similarly the number of active troops in Europe is 8 million vs. China's active 2 million. When you combine those two figures and realise that not only does Europe have 4 times the active military personnel of China, they're also far, far better equipped due to having 6 times the budget (~$300bn US vs. China's ~$50bn US).

Regarding nuclear stockpiles, check here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_states_with_nuclear_weapons#Estimated_worldwide_nuclear_stockpiles [wikipedia.org]

You'll see that China is one of the smallest nuclear players, having less active warheads than Russia, the US, the UK, France and possibly Israel whilst also only having just a few more than India. Also it's worth noting that whilst Russia is complaining bitterly about the US missile shield, it has more than enough nukes to overwhelm it but the reality is that China doesn't. China's nuclear capability could possibly not even whipe out the US let alone the rest of the West before it itself was whiped out, nukes create big explosions, but not _that_ big. The US has 300 million people and even assuming China has 160 nukes, at 1 million casualties per person on average that still leaves the US population at 140 million - hell, 1 million is a reasonable amount for a nuke but even strip another 40 million people off and the US is still going to have enough people to rebuild where possible whereas China would have been whiped off the map completely with the US' full stockpile.

Regarding Chinese citizens being happier, I'm not sure where you get that impression. Tibet has effectively been closed off because dissent is such a problem there, and China are also battling muslim uprisings right now.

You say China is moving into space and well, yeah, that's true, but they're still decades behind the US, Russia and Europe there too. Military bases offshore? So what? just like Russia, the US, and most European countries also then? The US and Europe have bases worldwide due to Europe's old colonial islands that still belong to us from the Falklands off Argentina, through to Guantanamo bay in Cuba to Quatar to bases in Iraq and Afghanistan, to Diego Garcia. Russia similarly has bases spread quite far across the world. So tell me, what exactly is the problem with China seeking an offshore base when other nations have it all already?

Nothing you've said demonstrates that China is gaining strength at an alarming rate, only that it's slowly playing catch up with the other major players.

Again, I know it's easy to fall into the propaganda trap of "China is a dangerous and evil threat" but that line of thinking just doesn't match up with the reality of the situation that even at current rates of increased spending China is still decades behind Europe and the US. It still has instability issues and there's still not really anywhere it can gain from attacking - it can't even feed people it has even though it has more than enough territory to support it's population so why would it want even more territory and people to deal with whilst simultaneously risking losing home territory, suffering massive casualties and defeat dealing with superiorly armed and equipped opponents and possibly even the overthrow of it's very own leadership?

I'm still intrigued to know where you even think they'd invade that wouldn't bring on the wrath of a major opponent such as the US or Europe who could leave them in ruins?

Re:Like this is a surprise? (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 4 years ago | (#27301547)

I'm not really sure why you think that China is better equipped than Europe, see here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Military_of_the_European_Union#Member_States.27_military_spending [wikipedia.org] You'll see Europe's military spending dwarfs that of Chinas with only the US above it. Similarly the number of active troops in Europe is 8 million vs. China's active 2 million. When you combine those two figures and realise that not only does Europe have 4 times the active military personnel of China, they're also far, far better equipped due to having 6 times the budget (~$300bn US vs. China's ~$50bn US). First, 1 dollar spent here in the US or EU is NOT the same as one dollar in China. 1 million spent in China goes MUCH further than 1 million to here. That is a major issue with such reports.
Second that is what is reported. ALL of US and EU put their TOTAL budget out on the front. We have black sections, but we know top of what we spend and deficits. OTH, china does not. For example, it is now known that China is spending more than 2x on their space program for the last several years, than what they report. Their reported budget would not even cover their manned program, let alone their current unmanned work.
It is also thought that their military spending is upwards of 10X their current reported. In fact, their reported budget would cover ONLY their local budget for LOCAL control. It does not begin to take in account for their subs, and other new ships, their new sub base.
A better look is to see what their forces currently are, AND where are they building. China has double the size of our armed forces, even though we are in 2 wars. [wikipedia.org] Not surprising considering that they use many locally.
THe problem is when a nation is building up MUCH faster than any other nation has in previous history. For example, they have built 60 new ships over the last 8 years. If these were cruisers, not a big deal. But, it is not. They are currently putting together 2-4 new nukes PER YEAR. If they stay at that pace, in another 4 years, they will surpase US's (and we assume that they are only starting that few; we no longer know PUBLICALLY since they are building in a "hidden" base on Hainan island). [nytimes.com]
btw, where do you get 8 million for EU active troops? According to that link, it was 2.8 mi (which included turkey's .5 mil, serbia, croatia, etc who are NOT part of EU). OTH, China DOES have 2.25 million active troops.

As to the count of warheads, China is still actively building new warheads and they are neutrons, not regular H2 bombs. The real problem is that nobody publically knows how much CHina really has. They will not show or announce it. The west and even Russia do announce theirs, and have been shown to be fairly accurate over the decades.

Decades behind EU in space? You kidding? Eu has still not launched a person. They have a decent non-manned system up there, but China is focused heavily on a space system devoted not to science or civilian expansion, but to their military. That is an issue.

Like I said about the base, I am not surprised that China is trying to put a base in the gulf. W/neo-cons were trying to locate our core nuke platforms to Texas, which makes it a VERY target.

I think that if CHina were to invade another nation that is not connected to us via agreement that we could NOT do anything. Basically, we are now finacially strapped and unable to handle a war with any major nation without resorting to nukes. That is why when Russia did the georgia job, we sat back. McCain made a big deal of it, but even W had enough sense to keep quiet. Basically, with our deficit and being in 2 wars (one of which was insane), we no longer have the ability to do another. EU has learned that wars ALWAYS come with major costs, so they would sit aside as long as it is not one of their bases.

History? (1)

MasaMuneCyrus (779918) | more than 5 years ago | (#27278349)

While connecting the dots to infer something may not make it so, Russia has a rich history of cyber attacks against enemies. Isn't it prudent to consider their history when looking at the evidence?

what evidence .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27279677)

"While connecting the dots to infer something may not make it so, Russia has a rich history of cyber attacks against enemies. Isn't it prudent to consider their history when looking at the evidence?"

What evidence a report that claims that Stopgeorgia.ru is hosted by an ISP that's in the same street as GRU headquarters. Like, given the history of the KGB, do you think they would be that stupid.

'* The StopGeorgia.ru forum was part of a bulletproofed network [scribd.com] that relied on shell companies and false WHOIS data to (a) prevent its closure through Terms of Service violations, and (b) to maks the involvement of the Russian FSB/GRU. By mimicking the structure of the Russian Business Network, a cyber criminal enterprise, it created plausible deniability that it is a Kremlin-funded Information Operation (IO)'

Why set up a traceable organization when you can instruct your own agents in the real organizations to carry out such blackops. I mean that's the one thing spy organizations are designed to do, infiltrate conventional organizations with their own secret agents. And given the nature of DDOS attacks, it wouldn't take that much organization. Cases in point being the Conficker [nytimes.com] worm and the BBCs bought in botnet [vnunet.com] . Are we supposed to take this 'report' at face value, given its timing and its source, a front organization with ties to the US intelligence community.

Re:History? (1)

JAlexoi (1085785) | more than 5 years ago | (#27283989)

Oh! So now, in current economy, even 2 is rich!?!?! Wow! I never thought that it was THAT bad.

and finally .. (1)

rs232 (849320) | more than 5 years ago | (#27279761)

slashdot links to fake bullshit bogus 'report' ...

if you only knew what the US govt does (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27281917)

.
lets jsut say they ain't so perfect and nice either.
Any country that don't have a hacking team is well
STUPID.

Sumbuddy better tell Sheriff Rosco ! (1)

Higgs_Bozon (1506197) | more than 5 years ago | (#27284691)

Ah tell ya, it's them Kaspersky boys!
Them an' their souped up Lada, "The General Potemkin"!


- Boss Higgs
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