Chinese Military Analysis of American Information Warfare Strategy Theory and Its Practical Conception //
By 胡 堅
From various news media, we can often read reports of hacking attacks on US information systems and computer networks, especially when the United States is arrogant and provocative in the world. . As a country with the most reliance on computers and information technology and the most popular application in the world, the vulnerability of the US information system and the vulnerability caused by its huge number are obvious. However, we must not forget that the United States is not only the only superpower in the world today, but also the number one information technology power. The importance of the United States to information warfare and the depth of research are unmatched by any country in the world. In addition to theoretical research, the United States has conducted several information warfare simulations and practical exercises of varying sizes. The US information war strategy is consistent with the starting point of its global military strategic thinking and is based on aggressiveness and expansion. While arguing and even exaggerating hackers pose a serious threat to its information infrastructure, on the other hand, the United States is quietly taking an active position in its information warfare in the future, and even launching large-scale information to other countries. Attack and make positive preparations. Therefore, people should not take it lightly and relax their vigilance. This article intends to briefly explain some important viewpoints of the United States on the strategic theory of information warfare for reference.
I. The United States’ definition of information warfare The
United States has been studying information warfare theory for a long time, and has published a large number of research literatures in this area, but the definition of information warfare has been constantly revised and improved. At the beginning of 1996, the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the United States gave an earlier definition of
information warfare : information warfare refers to the impact of capturing information superiority, the enemy information systems and computer networks, and the existing information systems and Facilities such as computer networks are protected and information is taken.
The above includes two aspects of attack and protection of the information infrastructure (NII). In October 1998, the Joint Chiefs of Staff made a perfection and supplement to the definition of information warfare in the newly promulgated “Information Warfare Common Dogma”. The most striking thing is that it is the first time in the form of government documents. The National Information Infrastructure (NII) is included in the scope of the information warfare. There are two main points: First, civilian facilities such as telephone, electric power and air traffic control systems will become the targets of information warfare attacks; second, the act of using any means to interfere with and destroy the enemy’s information decision-making process has been put into practice. .
The above definition shows that in order to achieve its strategic goals, the United States will not hesitate to destroy the vital infrastructure of a country as a means to force the other party to submit, in the process, it does not care about any loss that may be caused to civilians. With casualties. This was fully taught in the conflict that erupted in Kosovo from April to June 1999.
Second, the enemy
of information warfare The definition of the enemy of the information warfare in the United States is very complicated and ambiguous. The definition in the “Information Warfare Common Dogma” is as follows:
“The enemy of information warfare refers to the influence of my decision makers. Information threats and terrorist acts that are organized, premeditated and politically motivated or politically motivated. Hackers, individuals or organized criminals, internal apostates, industrial and economic agents who attack attacks on protected information systems and Terrorists are among the following.
From this definition, we can find that under certain circumstances, the United States can include foreign individuals or organizations, even a sovereign country, among its opponents of information warfare. Let us take an analogy: an energy company in a third world country negotiates with a US company and intends to purchase the electric equipment produced by the latter. Since the energy company’s information management system was purchased from the Netherlands and managed by Dutch engineering and technical personnel, these managers inadvertently learned about the transaction and reported the home country company, which led to the involvement of Dutch power equipment manufacturing companies. Competing with US companies ultimately led to major changes in the outcome of the deal. So the Dutch contender has in fact become a hostile party to the US information warfare.
Third, the strategic considerations of information warfare
The US information war strategy is one of the means of dismantling the enemy and forcing the opponent to obey the will of the United States and act according to the will of the United States. The explanation in the “Information Warfare Common Dogma” is as follows:
“In the peace year and the initial stage of the crisis, information warfare may be the best deterrent means to exert influence on the other party. Information warfare is to resolve the crisis and shorten the confrontation cycle. Enhancing the effectiveness of intelligence, diplomacy, economic and military means, and avoiding the use of mercenaries in conflict zones will play a major role.”
Please pay close attention to the “best deterrent measures in peace years…” In a word, this is a very threatening phrase because it shows that the United States can initiate an information attack from any country that it considers to be an opponent without declaring war. That is to say, in the form of a formal program document, the United States has unambiguously stated to the world that information warfare will be an effective tool for intervening in other countries’ internal affairs and interfering in other countries’ internal affairs during the years of peace.
US information warfare expert William Church From the above theory, several different types of conflicts or crises in the world that may occur in the future, information warfare is proposed to solve several hypothetical means:
one hypothetical: war territorial dispute triggered by
the first Second British, Ama Island War. The traditional war process is considered to be that Argentina once again sent troops and reclaimed the Malvinas Islands (Falkland Islands). The United Kingdom is convinced that Argentina is difficult to find international carriers because it does not have aircraft carriers and intercontinental ballistic missiles. Holding the island, the end of the war will still be the same as last time, with the British sending a powerful fleet to attack the island, Argentina defeated and summed, Britain won the return to the island.
But after considering the factors of information warfare, another situation may arise. Since information warfare will become an important weapon in future wars, Argentina can make full use of it to change its obvious weakness and counterattack Britain. And the final peace talks opportunity may also be created by the clever use of information warfare. In the war, the information warfare that Argentina can implement has the following aspects:
1. Obstructing each other’s war preparations: Through the means of information attacks, the British military’s communication systems and equipment are ineffective, destroying the British military’s personnel and equipment database, delaying the preparations for war in the UK, and increasing the huge expenditure for this. In the end, it may even force the British government to reconsider its ability and feasibility to take military action.
2. Psychological warfare changes the public opinion of the British public: psychological warfare can be varied, from spreading rumors to creating false news and stories that can dominate the entire paradox. The effect of using psychological warfare alone may not be ideal, but if combined with other means of information warfare, it can produce excellent results.
3. Creating a national information infrastructure crisis: If Argentina can launch an effective attack on the UK’s telecommunications, telephone, rail and air traffic control information infrastructure, it will be paralyzed or awkward. In this case, the British government wants to The determination to send troops to a war thousands of miles away will be difficult. In the half-month voyage of the aircraft carrier battle group to the destination, the voices and plans for seeking a peaceful solution that accompanied the domestic panic are likely to be brewing or negotiating.
4. Destroy the economic and financial means of maintaining war in the UK: weaknesses and shortcomings in the financial system can be exploited to create financial crises and panic. In 1998, there was an incident in the US stock market that caused the stock index to fall 200 points in just a few minutes due to computer program errors. The cause of the incident was that when a computer program reported the proceeds of several investment funds, the data was wrong due to incorrect programming. As a result, the stock price fluctuations of these funds caused a French businessman to be shocked and first hit. The order of immediately throwing the disk, the result triggered a panic that should not have occurred, causing the stock market to plummet, and many companies and shareholders suffered heavy losses. Information warfare experts believe that such defects can be replicated by means of information. It can attract the attention of the government and create a serious illusion of economic problems, thus affecting the government’s decision-making and financial support for war.
Hypothesis 2: Disagreements caused by economic dependence
Singapore is a city with a combination of international trading port, Far East financial center and Southeast Asian sea transportation center. It is economically developed and the people are rich, but it is a small country. The neighboring Malaysia is vast, but it is very poor and backward. Due to the small size of the country, Singapore’s air routes will pass through the southern part of Malaysia. This route is called the “air corridor” and it is a lifeline of Singapore. Although the two countries are both ASEAN countries, the relationship is still good, but there have been differences in how to use the “air corridor.” If one day Malaysia refuses to continue to use Singapore’s route through its airspace, the differences between the two countries may develop into a confrontation.
Information warfare can have many different ways of expression in this dispute. The most noticeable thing is that Singapore refused to provide advanced air traffic control services to Malaysia to pressure Malaysia to surrender and was forced to sit down and negotiate to solve the problem. And disputes. Because there is no binding clause in international law for such retaliation, once such incidents occur, it will surely attract strong attention from the international community.
The illusion of three:
a typical example of military confrontation and nuclear competition is the nuclear race and long-term military confrontation between India and Pakistan. Information weapons are likely to play a key role in resolving and eliminating this growing competition. The use of advanced electromagnetic pulse weapons, or the use of hacker infiltration methods to smash the nuclear weapons control information system and destroy the database of research data, can shake the nuclear weapons research programs of these two countries. This approach can also be extended to attack and destroy all important manufacturing, production and test equipment.
The illusion of the fourth: to change the attitude of a country from the eradication of the economy
In the information war, do not underestimate the impact of the National Information Infrastructure (NII) attack, it can give attackers an ideal opportunity to manipulate the economic situation of the other side. The direct result is that it can force hostile countries to greatly reduce their military spending, turn their financial resources to restore the economy, or force hostile countries to move from confrontation to easing.
Let us use an imaginary information attack example to illustrate its great destructiveness: A country confronts with B. During this period, State A found that B has an important water conservancy project (such as the river dam) and the national economy and people’s livelihood. It is closely related, so the country took the means of information attack, invaded and took over the monitoring and management system of the dam, and by changing the water storage capacity of the dam reservoir, it achieved the purpose of significantly changing the climate dry humidity in a certain area of B; Further, if State A puts a virus or destructive code in the dam’s control system, the reservoir’s control and regulation system suddenly fails at critical moments (such as the flood season), and as a result, the reservoir is lost due to flooding. The role of flooding, causing serious natural disasters and economic losses, in the end, the original economic advantages of the country B completely lost, under the pressure of internal and external, the country B had to succumb to the country.
The illusion of the fifth: the use of information weapons to obtain the same effect of using weapons of mass destruction in information warfare research, a problem that US information warfare experts are very interested in is: using information attacks, can create similar pearls of the year The massive damage effect of the Hong Kong incident? The conclusion is that, in theory, this possibility is completely present and necessary in hostile action, because it can greatly weaken the other’s ability to respond, resulting in the same possible military cost. effect. However, to achieve this, it is impossible to achieve without careful planning and sufficient resources to support and support. The US research program in this area is highly classified and unknown to outsiders.
The US military strategy theory believes that a country’s infrastructure can be greatly weakened by exerting a long-lasting military strike against it. But the ultimate goal of this is to clear the obstacles for the peace talks and force the other party to accept harsh conditions for peace talks. To this end, not only detailed and thorough target strike plans and multiple simulation rehearsals for attack plans, but also contingency measures in case of retaliatory counterattacks, as well as a complete command and logistics support system, etc., are required. Wait. NATO’s humanitarian signage and the brutal invasion of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia are an actual rehearsal of this theory.
four. The traditional strategic defense priority theory faces severe challenges
In the spring of 1998, American military experts Stephen Van Evra and Charles L. Glazer published the “Attack, Defence, and War Causes” in the American Journal of International Security, Vol. 22, No. 4. “The concept of “attack and defense balance point and its measurement” and many other articles, that during the Cold War after World War II, it belongs to the era of strategic defense theory. At that time, the confrontational East and West sides were evenly matched and indifferent to each other in terms of the quantity and quality of their own conventional weapons and nuclear weapons. They always tried to avoid direct conflicts and confrontation. The main concern of both sides at the time was the balance and constraints of each other.
But nowadays, due to the emergence of a new war mode—-the emergence of information warfare, it is possible to use information attacks to directly attack the infrastructure of a country. Especially in information warfare, the cost of the attacker is far less than that of the defender. Therefore, some military experts in the United States believe that the old strategic theory must be revised to meet the needs of the new situation. In addition, they also stressed that implementation of the new strategic theory, depends on three factors simultaneously:
· On the basis of a strong military machine as a backup and security, and gradually reduce the investment in traditional military equipment;
· globalization The neoliberal trend of thought and the appreciation and acceptance of global market mechanisms;
• The dependence of developed and developing countries on information infrastructure is growing. The heart of speculation can be seen here.
American military critic Lawrence Friedman made a profound understanding and elaboration of the above-mentioned theory among American military personnel: “Western countries (the United States and NATO) have never considered the ultimate in developing military capabilities. The way of thinking has developed to such a dangerous point: if the military strength cannot reach the full overwhelming tendency of the enemy and the enemy has no power to fight, it cannot be regarded as qualified; the purpose of military action is to follow the set. The plan creates a very favorable negotiating position for one’s own side. Therefore, this time (the introduction of the new strategic theory), it is also necessary to take the lead in the comprehensive consideration of various factors.”
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