China calls US culprit in global 'Internet war'

June 3, 2011

(AP) -- The Chinese military accused the U.S. on Friday of launching a global "Internet war" to bring down Arab and other governments, turning the tables on allegations of major online attacks on Western targets originating in China.

The accusations Friday by Chinese military academy scholars, and their urging of tougher policing of the Internet, followed allegations this week that in China had compromised the personal Gmail accounts of several hundred people, including government officials, military personnel and political activists.

Google traced the origin of the attacks to the city of Jinan that is home to a military vocational school whose computers were linked to a more sophisticated assault on Google's systems 17 months ago. China has denied responsibility for the two attacks.

Writing in the Communist Party-controlled China Youth Daily newspaper, the scholars did not mention Google's claims, but said recent and incidents employing the Internet to promote regime change in Arab nations appeared to have originated with the U.S. government.

"Of late, an Internet tornado has swept across the world ... massively impacting and shocking the globe. Behind all this lies the shadow of America," said the article, signed by Ye Zheng and Zhao Baoxian, identified as scholars with the Academy of Military Sciences.

"Faced with this warmup for an Internet war, every nation and military can't be passive but is making preparations to fight the Internet war," it said.

While nuclear war was a strategy of the industrial era, Internet war is a product of the information age, the article said. Such conflicts stand to be hugely destructive, threatening national security and the very existence of the state, it said.

China needs to "express to the world its principled stance of maintaining an 'Internet border' and protecting its 'Internet sovereignty,' unite all advanced forces to dive into the raging torrent of the age of peaceful use of the Internet, and return to the Internet world a healthy, orderly environment," the article said.

China already heavily filters content and blocks numerous foreign websites, a system known as the "Great Firewall of China." The police employ a large force of Internet monitors to scour the Web for content deemed illegal or subversive, and those users transmitting sensitive contact can be charged with sedition or other crimes.

A number of foreign governments say they've been targeted by hacking attacks from , although Beijing routinely denies undertaking such operations and says it too is a victim of such activity.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton told reporters attacks such as the one alleged by Google were a primary reason why the State Department had for the first time created a cyber-security coordinator.

The FBI said it was investigating Google's allegations, but no official government email accounts have been compromised. said all the hacking victims have been notified and their accounts have been secured.

Explore further: Gov't says no official email hacked; FBI on case


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4 / 5 (1) Jun 03, 2011
I bet all this talk will lead to developing some treaty or mechanism set up by all interested parties/countries to monitor and record where the attack comes from so there is little doubt who started it. Like nuclear attack or underground explosion monitoring.
not rated yet Jun 04, 2011
Would be nice if China could back up these claims with some real evidence.
not rated yet Jun 07, 2011
First, I as a private person can use various freely available software which changes my IP address and thus the location where the attack was started; so it could have also be me, pretending to be in China.

Second, if China is right and didn't attack Google, how can they present evidence for a crime they haven't committed?

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