It seems that 17 separate intelligence services have connected the dots and deduced that Russia's Pootie-Poo Putin hacked the emails of the Democratic National Committee, Clinton campaign manager John Podesta, and no telling what all else. I also seem to recall reading that the Germans, the French, and other European countries have reason to believe the Rooskies are meddling in their upcoming elections, too. In response, just a few days ago Prez Obama said we will respond "at the time and place of our choosing." Oh yeah?
Pay attention, folks....from low intensity email hacking to elaborate cyber-sabotage, this is the new face of warfare in the 21st Century. For a surprisingly small investment, the US, or any country for that matter, can destroy any another country, regardless of how big or powerful they might be, without ever firing a shot. Some geeks in a dark room with a few computers can pull off the [almost] perfect crime. Actually I don't know if it could be done by just a few geeks or if it would take a small army of geeks, or whether it could be done using a few Dell's or HP's or requires a super computer, but it CAN be done.
Remember back in 2010 when the US with Israeli help....or was it Israel with US help?....unleashed the Stuxnet virus on Iran's nuclear enrichment centrifuges and burned up a thousand or so of them? Now think how far cyber-warfare has advanced in the time since. The US and the Russians, and no doubt the Chinese, Koreans, Iranians, and a few other barely-out-of-Third-World-status countries, can electronically set each other back 50 years with just a few keystrokes, and it's virtually impossible to tell who the bad guy is. Who do you strike back?
And here's where the West is especially vulnerable: Virtually every home, school, business, factory, port, car, truck, bus, train, and plane in the advanced world is connected and at risk, while much of the rest of the world lacks our degree of technological sophistication. We're simply a more target rich environment.
The Soviet Union collapsed when they had to choose between "guns or butter". The government chose guns, while the people were desperate for butter. The people won. Today the choice isn't one or the other. Even North Korea's Kim Jong Turd can wield power far beyond his two-bit dictator status. While it's possible to bomb a nuclear weapons facility, or a missile launch site, or an airbase, how do you know which geek in what room is the one that needs a good spanking?
Interesting times, eh? Stay tuned. I'm pretty sure this is all Bill Gates fault. ;)