Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cyberwars and toilet paper doom

Wall painting in Bauta, about 25 miles southwest of Havana. An artist who goes by TvBoy created the wall art in the photo.
Bauta is a haven for artists and musicians. It's also home to a former Soviet listening post called Lourdes.
In October 2001, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin announced Lourdes would be shut down. At one time, as many as 1,500 Russian technicians, engineers and military personnel worked at the base, according to the Federation of American Scientists.
After Lourdes closed, Cuban officials opened a school on the site - the University of Information Sciences or Universidad de Ciencias Informaticas.
CubaNews has touted the school as "the No. 1 hub in Cuba for information technology learning, research and software production."
In March, La Nueva Cuba, an online newspaper, reported that "Russian personnel has been in Cuba for several months working on modernizing SIGINT operations in the old Lourdes surveillance and monitoring facility."
The Web site said the supposed renovation was:
...part of a project of rearming and modernization of Russian armed forces and the goal of completion by 2011.
The new operations could include military sections dedicated to hacking or computer systems espionage with a capacity to neutralize U.S. military networks...
Then last week, an opinion piece appeared in Miami Herald. The headline: Cuba capable of waging a cyberwar.
These reports are just thrown out there little or no evidence to back them up. It reminds me of the biological weapons campaign. Remember those headlines? Cuba capable of waging biological attacks. But I never saw any evidence that Cuba was actually planning or doing any kind of biological strike.
So now it's going to be a cyberwar. How realistic is that? I mean, the same country that has a toilet paper shortage is suddenly going to wage a cyberwar?
It seems some people want to make sure that Cuba is always seen as a threat, an enemy nation - with no toilet paper in sight.

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