In September 2010, media reports emerged about a new form of cyber attack that appeared to target Iran, although the actual target, if any, is unknown. Through the use of thumb drives in computers that were not connected to the Internet, a malicious software program known as Stuxnet infected computer systems that were used to control the functioning of a nuclear power plant. Once inside the system, Stuxnet had the ability to degrade or destroy the software on which it operated. This book examines the discovery of the Stuxnet worm which has raised several issues for Congress, including the effect on national security, what the government's response should be, whether an international treaty to curb the use of malicious software is necessary, and how such a treaty could be implemented.
This book argues that Network Centric Warfare (NCW) influences how developed militaries operate in the same fashion that an operating system influences the development of computer software.
It examines three inter-related issues: the overwhelming military power of the United States; the growing influence of NCW on military thinking; and the centrality of coalition operations in modern military endeavours. Irrespective of terrorist threats and local insurgencies, the present international structure is remarkably stable – none of the major powers seeks to alter the system from its present liberal character, as demonstrated by the lack of a military response to US military primacy. This primacy privileges the American military doctrine and thus the importance of NCW, which promises a future of rapid, precise, and highly efficient operations, but also a future predicated on the ‘digitization’ of the battle space. Participation in future American-led military endeavours will require coalition partners to be networked: ‘interoperability’ will therefore be a key consideration of a partner’s strategic worth.
Network Centric Warfare and Coalition Operations will be of great interest to students of strategic studies, international security, US foreign policy and international relations in general.
The global reliance on computers, networks and systems continues to grow. As our dependency grows so do the threats that target our military s Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (C4ISR) systems as well as the operational components and electronic controls for our critical infrastructure. Over the past decade we have experienced a substantial rise in the complexity and sophistication of cyber attacks as well as a frightening increase in the impact of some of the attacks. Every computer is a potential cyber weapon waiting to be loaded and used by extremists, criminals, terrorists and rogue nation states. As the world becomes more and more dependent on computers and information technology, the greater the risk of cyber attacks. Government and military leaders now face this fact and our critical systems and infrastructure remain at great risk! This risk has made the ability to defend these critical systems and direct cyber attacks core capabilities required for the modern military. In the age of cyber conflict, leaders need to understand the weapons and strategies used to wage this rapidly evolving type of warfare. This handbook will provide the background needed to understand the new world of cyber warfare, define the tools and techniques for offensive and defensive action, and provide insight into the strategies behind building a dynamic and relevant cyber warfare capability.