Yesterday, you'll recall, I blogged about the strange suspension of trading on the New York Stock Exchange(NYSE) on July 8, due to a "technical glitch." As you'll also recall, July 8 & 9 appeared to be two days rife with technical glitches, as United Airlines also suffered "network connectivity issues" and a German Patriot missile battery in Turkey began to execute commands coming from outside the unit and, presumably, from outside the Bundeswehr command structure itself. Adding fuel to the conspiracy theories, traders in contact with Alex Jones' website commentator, Paul Joseph Watson, had indicated to him that the trading was suspended because of the Chinese market meltdown. They speculated that it was no glitch, but perhaps Chinese "retaliation", a point that, as I observed, would make more sense if the alleged Chinese attack had been market wide and not just confined to the NYSE, since trading continued via other venues. Additionally, the hacking group Anonymous issued a direct statement on Wall Street the day prior to the "glitch" and the suspension of trading, a fact made more intriguing because concurrent with the NYSE "glitch", the Wall Street Journal also suffered a website shutdown. As a final indicator that there was more going on than merely a "glitch," President Obama was apparently briefed on the situation, while the Heimatsicherheitdienst, aka The Department of Homeland Security, issued bland assurances that there were no indications of any cyber attack.
Well, obviously, I think the contrary, otherwise there would be no need to brief the President, who already has a full plate and doesn't need to be briefed about "technical glitches," unless the glitch spells some sort of threat to national security.
The question then becomes, who did it, and why?
Here the high octane speculative possibilities can run riot: was the USA sending a message to Germany that "we can shut down any systems purchased from this country at will?" If so, then the message is probably counter-productive, since the Germans will most likely develop their own systems,and bypass any potential "American override" capability in their systems. Was the message a retaliatory message from the USA to Germany, implying that the latter country may have had something to do with the "technical glitch?" Again, most probably not, though it is only fair to recall that Frau Merkel was not terribly pleased about the NSA hacking her cellphone, and took steps to have Germany's BND review its procedures.
Which leaves the Anonymous statement itself, and what that group may, or may not, represent. It bills itself, of course, as a kind of independent freelance group of hackers fed up with American "dollar diplomacy"(to cite a notorious document that I mention in The Third Way). But if so, it's a group with skills that could only (in my opinion) be gained by dint of some contact with the military and data processing capabilities of a major power. Independent it may be, but its expertise - if indeed it pulled off the NYSE, United Airlines, and German patriot missile battery feats - indicates some connection, somewhere, to a major military power.
I suggest, therefore, that the Patriot missile battery attack may indicate who that group may be, and what they may be "up to," for as noted above, the attack on the missile battery can have but one result, namely, forcing the Bundeswehr to reassess its weapons procurement strategies, and to disentangle itself from reliance on any American equipment whatsoever. If so, then Anonymous' motivations in this respect might indicate less a Chinese or Russian connection, as is often urged, and more some sort of connection to a sovereign entity of an entirely different sort, one working behind several corporate and national fronts.
I'm not ruling out the Chinese or Russian connections that so many advocate for the group, but given the strangeness of the events of July 8 and 9, I'm not ruling out this possibility either, for there may indeed by another player on the block than the conventional ones of China, Russia, and, for that matter, any other military power and typical nation-state. It may be that we have to take Anonymous at their word, that they really are an independent international group with that kind of expertise and, by implication, the financial backing and technologica capability, to pull off things like this.
And if that be the case, there are few "internationally based" contenders in the historical record...
See you on the flip side...