back to article Chinese hacktivists launch cyber attack on Japan

Chinese hackers have taken up cyber arms and followed up widespread anti-Japan protests in the People’s Republic over a set of disputed islands by attacking at least 19 Japanese government and other web sites. Japan’s National Police Agency (NPA) revealed that 11 of the 19 sites, including those of the Defence Ministry and …

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FAIL

Semantic Failure

This article needs proof-reading -- it just does not make sense.

"when the Tokyo decided

"had posted messages about planned attacks on Chinese chat site

"have only been actively claimed ... until the late 1960s"

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Modern Warfare

Any sign of the Chinese government taking steps to stop/catch the attackers? It seems to have been obvious in advance what they were up to.

<No government action> => approval, so how far is it from being an act of war?

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Re: Modern Warfare

It's only an act of war if someone goes to war. And I don't see the minimalist and restricted JDF taking up arms against China any time soon.

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Re: Modern Warfare

"...if someone goes to war". True (ish). If 'war' is solely defined in terms of physical acts, then it can't be an act of war.

My question is really about how far do these acts need to go before they have the effect of an act of war or provoke a response which is warlike. My fear is that the gap isn't so great and that sooner or later someone will provoke real physical retaliation.

Not going to happen in this case, I concede, but what about, say India/Pakistan over Kashmir?

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Re: Modern Warfare

A lot, lot further than things are currently. Indeed: We have yet to see any electronic acts escalate into a declaration of war.

"Not going to happen in this case, I concede, but what about, say India/Pakistan over Kashmir?"

A few years ago, one of my staff lost 21 members of his family when Indian shellfire levelled his home village. It was 'just' a skirmish and resulted in no escalation. This is still going on:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2012_Armenian%E2%80%93Azerbaijani_border_clashes

And PRNK cheerfully torpedoes SK boats and shells barracks without it going further. Syria shot down a Turkish jet.

Truth is that warfare is an enormous cost to winner and loser alike. Thousands die. It bites for those involved, but it's easier to suck up a handful of casualties and rattle a sabre back than it is to commit to actual war. The only time warfare is resorted to for negligable reasons is when one side can whup the other and is looking for an excuse. qv: The Opium Wars where the West kicked the crap out of China in what can only be described as blatant extortion.

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Re: Modern Warfare

Agreed no electronic acts have escalated into a declaration of war. I'd like to think that that would be inconceivable, but I'm not so sure, hence the question I originally posted.

As you illustrate, the world seems to be full of simmering border disputes which result in low levels of casualties without blowing up any further, and it would take something special for electronic attacks to go beyond this.

I guess we'll find out the first time a militarily advanced country gets hit somewhere that matters, as opposed to the petty vandalism of public websites that we've seen so far.

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Go

Re: Modern Warfare

Militarily advanced, but neutered, with no real ambition to expand and a stated mission to actively avoid warfare. After WW2 Japan was severely limited by the US as to the extent of its armed forces. Although they're not behind the pack technically, it's the will to deploy them that's the issue. Even sending troops to Iraq caused a lot of protest. If there was a risk of a real shooting war, a substantial number of members would probably simply quit, making them less effective still.

I don't doubt that they'd act to defend themselves (though the US seems to be trying to keep out of it all), but they won't be first to the triggers.

The day will come though when electronic acts will tip the balance somewhere. Though I suspect that it will be a case where pretty much anything would have, anyway. For it not to have been an accident waiting to happen, the hacking will have surely have to have directly and obviously cost a lot of lives.

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Re: Modern Warfare

Yep, I don't see Japan doing anything other than complain (if that). Not so sure if the same would apply the other way around, mind.

'Tipping the balance' - yes, the most likely scenario. Or 'the last straw', if there's any difference between the two.

Governments and 'hacktivists' need to keep that point in mind. So far most of what is happening is, as I said, vandalism, and maybe just a bit of fun to many of those behind it. But do the same when things are on the edge and it's potentially a much more serious story.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Modern Warfare

Even bystanders have been attacked and paralysed, kids lost , cars and factories burned in China with no police investigation at all, so imagine how off-the-chart some hacks are.

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Mushroom

Firstly

First Japan and then the US, or the other way around.

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