Friday, June 1, 2012

New York Times: Obama Ordered Stuxnet Attacks on Iran Nuclear Facilities

A long article that appeared on New York Times (6/1/2012) does mention that the program was started by President Bush.

According to the article, the Nobel Peace Prize winner president's decision to use the computer virus on Iranian nuclear facilities was made in his first months in office. I remember one of the very first things he did after his inauguration was to bomb Pakistan.

From New York Times (6/1/2012):

Obama Order Sped Up Wave of Cyberattacks Against Iran

WASHINGTON — From his first months in office, President Obama secretly ordered increasingly sophisticated attacks on the computer systems that run Iran’s main nuclear enrichment facilities, significantly expanding America’s first sustained use of cyberweapons, according to participants in the program.

Mr. Obama decided to accelerate the attacks — begun in the Bush administration and code-named Olympic Games — even after an element of the program accidentally became public in the summer of 2010 because of a programming error that allowed it to escape Iran’s Natanz plant and sent it around the world on the Internet. Computer security experts who began studying the worm, which had been developed by the United States and Israel, gave it a name: Stuxnet.

At a tense meeting in the White House Situation Room within days of the worm’s “escape,” Mr. Obama, Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and the director of the Central Intelligence Agency at the time, Leon E. Panetta, considered whether America’s most ambitious attempt to slow the progress of Iran’s nuclear efforts had been fatally compromised.

“Should we shut this thing down?” Mr. Obama asked, according to members of the president’s national security team who were in the room.

Told it was unclear how much the Iranians knew about the code, and offered evidence that it was still causing havoc, Mr. Obama decided that the cyberattacks should proceed. In the following weeks, the Natanz plant was hit by a newer version of the computer worm, and then another after that. The last of that series of attacks, a few weeks after Stuxnet was detected around the world, temporarily took out nearly 1,000 of the 5,000 centrifuges Iran had spinning at the time to purify uranium.

(Full article at the link)

That's an act of war by the way, without declaration. But that's nothing new in the US. Zero Hedge has a post dissecting the NY Times article, here.


Anonymous said...

so to speak, there are "windows(tm?)" into the nuclear world >:D

Anonymous said...

Speaking of the warmonger Obomber, here is an article by Ralph Nader:

Where are the Lawyers?
Obama At Large

The rule of law is rapidly breaking down at the top levels of our government. As officers of the court, we have sworn to “support the Constitution,” which clearly implies an affirmative commitment on our part.

Take the administrations of George W. Bush and Barack Obama. The conservative American Bar Association sent three white papers to President Bush describing his continual unconstitutional policies. Then and now civil liberties groups and a few law professors, such as the stalwart David Cole of Georgetown University and Jonathan Turley of George Washington University, have distinguished themselves in calling out both presidents for such violations and the necessity for enforcing the rule of law.

Sadly, the bulk of our profession, as individuals and through their bar associations, has remained quietly on the sidelines. They have turned away from their role as “first-responders” to protect the Constitution from its official violators.

As a youngster in Hawaii, basketball player Barack Obama was nicknamed by his schoolboy chums as “Barry O’Bomber,” according to the Washington Post. Tuesday’s (May 29) New York Times published a massive page-one feature article by Jo Becker and Scott Shane, that demonstrated just how inadvertently prescient was this moniker.


Anonymous said...

America runs the world, and Jewish Extremists run America - Adrian Salbuchi (google him!)

Anonymous said...

a Zionist hit on Iran using the yanks as front men, the americans are stupid and have no idea who really runs the show in the Usa, they are too busy getting fat and chowing down super size shit..

Anonymous said...

Finally, Obama does something that demonstrates an ounce of sense.

Just what Islamicist armageddon believers need --- nuclear weapons. They sure don't need atomic power.

Some entertaining commenters as well...Ralph Nader asking for lawyers is enough to make anyone laugh out loud...Then there's the tin had mini-pogrom brigade.

And why anyone would take the Nobel Peace Prize seriously is beyond understanding. Maybe it was another Jewish Extremist plot to give it to that noted Zionist and supporter of Israel, Jimmy Carter

Anonymous said...

CIA does most of their work without the President's knowledge. In this case, it becomes convenient to pin the Pres's name on this virus to extract the supposed reaction from the other side. It is just another one of their intimidation tactics. It is utmost concern for industries using the SCADA controllers to purge their systems and absolutely NOT allow a single PC to be connected to the control systems. Any serious control system with Windows based PCs are just asking for infection!.

Anonymous said...

A virus that attacks nuclear plant software is a bad idea, full stop. Throwing it around and letting it get into the wrong hands is even worse. It's also a bad idea to use technology we can't responsibly control (eg. nuclear plants), and even worse to place them on fault lines or next to oceans. Bad ideas all around.

Supposedly, it's been established that Stuxnet was observed as having affected Japanese nuclear plants a long time before the Fukushima disaster. If this is true, and if they failed to completely remove the virus, then it's possible that the virus may have had a hand in the plants failing to shutdown.

Not that I'm pointing any fingers, but I think it's a possible (and likely) scenario. It underscores the serious consequences of having created such a virus. I doubt its creators even imagined it'd be used in such a way. It's a good example of society failing to keep up with technology. With computers being increasingly used for all sorts of purposes, can you imagine how viruses could potentially cause so much havoc?

Regardless of Stuxnet, I think that the reactors would still have been in bad shape, although the situation might not have been as bad as it is. I guess all we can do now is hope that people wake the hell up and learn from these mistakes (yeah, right).

Anonymous said...

Dear Primavera,
have you seen TEPCO's latest video on decontamination around the truck bay door at Unit 2?
Can you tell what the workers are doing?

Anonymous said...

One of the most compelling features of ex-skf is the apparently seamless transition from far left conspiracy-minded blog, to far right anti-Obama idealogue. It certainly makes for interesting, if not entirely consistent, reading.

Anonymous said...

Anon above, since when NYT is "far right anti-Obama"? Besides, so-called "conspiracy-minded" people are not the far left but supposed to be far right. You're mixed up.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

Elena, they were using the strippable paint to decontaminate the floor. Or rather, to reduce the contamination. They are preparing for the work inside the reactor building to replace thermocouples. Since the building is still too contaminated for humans to work long hours, they are trying to reduce contamination.

Anonymous said...

Strippable paint. Now I see.
Thank you very much! Elena

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 4:43, I'm sorry, did I say that NYT was far right anti-Obama idealogue. My apologies. Oh wait.... I didn't say that. And you say that I am mixed up. The irony continues.

Atomfritz said...

Really worthy to read the whole NYT article.

It's always the same scheme: US does the dirty work because the allegedly want to keep Israel from doing so.
Just cutting the financial subsidies to Israel seems a taboo.
Who is the leader, who is the follower? I am unable to see a clear relationship.

OT: @ LaPrimavera, a post about "Katastrophenschutzplan" probably got caught by spam filter.

Anonymous said...

America runs the world and Jewish Extremists run America.That is EMPIRCAL FACT!

Anonymous said...

By the way, and I ain't no GDmed conspiracy theorist (but yes, Israel did 911), to what extent was Israel involved in the stuxnet virus that interfered at Fukushima? 3/11 is certainly an odd number... I am hardheaded, I don't buy nonsense, but 911 was not as the GOV said by any means, and the stuxnet thing is a bit odd, to say the least, if Israel was involved in security at Fukushima, as the Jerusalem Post reported (look it up).

Anonymous said...

I don't know about other people, but I completely ignore "left" and "right" labelling. It's used to dismiss possibilities and is a distraction from real issues. I do not side with anybody or any factions. I only want to know the truth and the facts.

By the way, when I said Stuxnet may have influenced Fukushima, I was NOT insinuating that it was intentional. It sounds very much like it was intended for Iran, and it's now a fact that they've lost control of it. It shouldn't have been created in the first place, and it underscores the dangers associated with advancing technology versus human mentality.

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to get my hands on stuxnet and the new one that hit iran,>"star" something, isn't it neat showing the world "who's boss" and being a "terrorist" it's true, problem is, whoever does these deeds > CAN YOU HANDLE YOUR OWN MEDICINE? THINK ABOUT THAT. DO IT TO SOMEONE?///> DO IT TO YOURSELF PERIOD. HUMBLING NO?

netudiant said...

It is fascinating to see how little people learn from history.
Britain in 1905 had the world's most powerful fleet by far, but Adm Fisher pushed through the construction of HMS Dreadnaught, a ship so advanced it obsoleted all the others. That gave Germany a level playing field to compete against Britain, as the existing fleets were instantly obsolete.
Today, the US is repeating the same error, imho.
Cyberwarfare makes a lot of the existing conventional and nuclear arsenals obsolete.Why bomb a country if you can reduce it to chaos simply by electronically depositing random large sums in everyone's bank accounts.So for the US to start to legitimize this kind of thing is deeply unhelpful, China has more smart hackers than the US does and Iran has many smart people as well. The US is much less preeminent in this space than in military might and will come to regret legitimizing this kind of activity.

Anonymous said...


"Any serious control system with Windows based PCs are just asking for infection!."

Stuxnet used known exploits to infect the machines and if the machines were patched Stuxnet would have completely failed.

Anonymous said...

Whoa, I thought the reactors shut down as designed, but the earthquake and tsunami damaged/destroyed power grid/cooling equipment, hence the loss of control over the reactors. What can that possibly have to do with Stuxnet?

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