British Empire War-Gamed Cyber War against Russia Last October
June 17, 2019 (EIRNS)—In the wake of the June 16 New York Times report claiming that the U.S. had dumped malware into Russia’s electricity grid, it’s worth recalling that last year the British military war-gamed a very similar scenario as a means, ostensibly, to deter Russian attacks on NATO, which the Sunday Times of London had reported on Oct. 7, 2018. According to The Times report, defense chiefs chose the cyber route because they concluded that the only other means the U.K. might have to respond to the exercise’s Russian aggression would be via a nuclear attack launched from a Trident submarine. Planning exercises on the threat posed by Russia reportedly left officials “ashen-faced” at the speed with which confrontation with Moscow could escalate, according to The Times account.
The war games that The Times cited were based on three scenarios: a Russian occupation of some small islands off the coast of Estonia in order to test NATO’s Article 5 commitment to defend any NATO member; a Russian seizure of Libyan oil fields that also sets off a new migration crisis in Europe; and, the use of irregular forces to launch attacks on British forces or threaten its new aircraft carriers. One senior source told The Times that the lack of nuclear options, aside from a strategic strike with Trident missiles, “is why cyber is so important; you can go on the offensive and turn off the lights in Moscow to tell them that they are not doing the right things.” The Times report didn’t reveal whether the British actually have the capability to do that, but the statement clearly hinted at offensive intentions.
EIR Daily Alert reported The Times coverage in its Oct. 8, 2018 issue.