In its earliest days, the Internet seemed to all of us to be an unqualified good: It was a way to share information, increase productivity, and experience new freedoms and diversions. Alexander Klimburg was a member of the idealistic generation that came of age with the Internet. Two decades later, he—and all of us—have been forced to confront the reality that an invention that was once a utopian symbol of connection has evolved into an unprecedented weapon and means of domination.
Cyberspace, Klimburg contends, is already the main stage for global confrontation for this century. In this new arena of conflict, brilliant individuals and informal networks have the capacity to bring ostensibly stable societies to their knees—but also save them from destruction—and nations are reconceiving information as the ultimate weapon and configuring their defenses accordingly. The debate about how individual nations and the global community alike will define this new domain of human interaction is more pressing and divisive than ever.