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Topic: #Department-of-Defense

Elective Wars of Aggression in Cyberspace


The Department of Defense has decided to step up its attacks on computers and networks in other countries.

“Pentagon Puts Cyberwarriors on the Offensive, Increasing the Risk of Conflict”
David E. Sanger, The New York Times, June 17, 2018

The Pentagon has quietly empowered the United States Cyber Command to take a far more aggressive approach to defending the nation against cyberattacks, a shift in strategy that could increase the risk of conflict with the foreign states that sponsor malicious hacking groups. …

The new strategy envisions constant, disruptive “short of war” activities in foreign computer networks.

Sanger tries to characterize this move as a shift in strategy from a “defensive posture” to one in which we are constantly attacking the networked devices of our notional enemies. This isn't quite accurate. There are currently no adequate tools and methods for “defending the nation against cyberattacks,” and the Department of Defense has systematically opposed the deployment of the tools and methods that are available (for example, civilian use of end-to-end encryption). So the posture of the Department of Defense has never been defensive.

On the contrary, the United States has always been the world leader, second perhaps only to Israel, in developing and using offensive military weapons for attacking networked devices. The change that Sanger is reporting is that the Department of Defense is now willing to acknowledge its continual attacks on networks located outside the United States. Apparently it has to make them more visible to Congress in order to get significant funding increases for them.

#war #Department-of-Defense

Two Times Ten to the Thirteenth Dollars in Unauthorized Government Spending


A research team at Michigan State University analyzed documents relating to the spending of the Department of Defense and the Department of Housing and Urban Development from 1998 to 2015 and concluded that those two departments alone had somehow managed to spend $21,000,000,000,000 more than Congress authorized. In 2015, Congress provided the United States Army with a budget of $122,000,000,000, which the Army overspent by a factor of 54: They had $6,500,000,000,000 in “unsupported adjustments”.

“MSU Scholars Find $21 Trillion in Unauthorized Government Spending; Defense Department to Conduct First-Ever Audit”
MSU Today, December 11, 2017

Perhaps it's not so surprising that Congress finds it difficult to take seriously its Constitutional duty to pass a budget every year.

#United-States-budget #military-spending #Department-of-Defense

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created June 1, 2014 · last revised December 10, 2018