Yes, you read the title of this blog correctly, "Those Dam Hackers," and not "Those Damned Hackers" or even "Those Dammed Hackers," though the latter may be closer to the literal truth than my own title, for it seems that someone has hacked into the USA's database of dams, according to RT:
Suggestively, RT has placed a picture of Hoover Dam, and the vast Lake Meade reservoir, as the header for its article, for Hoover damn supplies electrical power for the area (think of the Las Vegas strip at night here folks), and much of the water for this part of the southwest comes from this reservoir.
Now, my own home state, South Dakota, has four similarly large "damns"(sic) along the Missouri River, including the immense Oahe earthen "damn"(sic) near the state's capital of Pierre, and going south from there, the Fort Randall, Big Bend, and Gavin's Point "damns." Indeed, much of the Missouri-Ohio-Mississippi basin is riddled with dams and reservoirs. OK, that's enough of those dammed ...er...damned, problems...
Note where, allegedly, the hack was traced to:
"An online database containing information on 79,000 dams throughout the US was compromised for several months by a hacker, according to a spokesman for the Army Corps of Engineers. Analysts reportedly traced the hack to China."
My first reaction, when Ms. George Ann Hughes of The Byte Show brought this to my attention, was "how convenient...China." After all, China has been a major force behind the geopolitical and economic realignment taking place that goes under the name "BRICS" or "BRICSA" nations (as I like to call them). And what better way to demonize the Chinese than to show their perfidious and unscrupulous nature by showing they're up to covert-no-good regarding our flood plains, water supplies, and electrical power.
Except, why would fellow BRICSA partner Russia be reporting on their ally's nefarious activity? Here's why:
"The Free Beacon quotes unnamed intelligence officials familiar with the incident as having traced the intrusion to China. As Wired notes, however, using proxy servers it is possible to leave misleading data trails pointing the finger at foreign nations."
That's more like it.
But now, you're probably thinking the same things I am, none of the alternatives being terribly pleasant to contemplate:
- The US government is, for once, telling the unabashed truth, and the hack really did originate in China, and that means with Chinese government complicity, if not outright involvement. In that case, it's a shame, because if you're like me, the US government's stock of credibility and trustability was exhausted long ago. (Mine started to erode during JFK, quickly gathered momentum under Watergate and Iran-Contra, reached a point of no return with Iraq Gulf War one, and pretty well bottomed during the Clinton-Waco-OKC bombing era. G.W. Bush and Barmitt Obromneyack are merely the Q.E.D.s). In short, they may be telling the truth, but so what? They're no longer believable. Even Dr. Goebbels told an occasional truth, and a clock set to the wrong time is...well, you know.
- So, if China did hack, it is unlikely that it's going to leave signatures all over the place, unless it wants to send a very unpleasant message, like "we can open the flood gates if we want to...", but in that case, what would be the point of the message? It would only produce "heightened security," and be revealing a capability you'd want to keep secret anyway. So...my inclination is we can rule out China;
- So, it's "someone else," and RT is very likely trying to suggest that this "someone else" comes from within the West itself, and perhaps within its power structure, those "aggressive circles" within the military-industrial complex that former Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev referred to after the Russians shot down Francis Gary Powers' U-2 in 1960. You'll recall, Khrushchev very cleverly did not blame President Eisenhower directly for the incident, but rather, was suggesting that their were elements within the power structure of America that had slipped totally out of public control. He was, in short, talking about a state within a state.
If this is indeed behind the hack, then...well... drills, drills-gone-live.... hacking, terrorism, more national security state... you get the idea. And significantly, RT already interviewed the appropriate official, who herself planted the meme:
"Michelle Van Cleave, a former consultant to the CIA, told the Beacon that the data breach appeared to be part of a greater effort to collect 'vulnerability and targeting data' for future cyber or military attacks.
“'In the wrong hands, the Army Corps of Engineers’ database could be a cyber attack roadmap for a hostile state or terrorist group to disrupt power grids or target dams in this country,' said Van Cleave.
“'Alarm bells should be going off because we have next to no national security emergency preparedness planning in place to deal with contingencies like that,' she added."
Yea my alarm bells are going off alright...
See you on the flip side.