Obama: No retaliation for Russian hacking of our democracy

President Obama emerged from a 90-minute meeting with Russian president Putin and announced there would be no retaliation for Russia's suspected hack of the DNC files and other political targets.

I'm sure this pleases Putin, who is now suspected of creating a covert operation to destroy American democracy by hacking the upcoming election.

Washington Times:

“We’ve had problems with cyberintrusions from Russia in the past, from other countries in the past,” Mr. Obama said.

But he suggested that he didn’t want to retaliate.

“Our goal is not to suddenly in the cyber arena duplicate a cycle of escalation that we saw when it comes to other arms races in the past, but rather to start instituting some norms so that everybody’s acting responsibly,” Mr. Obama said. “What we cannot do is have a situation in which suddenly this becomes the wild, wild West, where countries that have significant cybercapacity start engaging in unhealthy competition or conflict through these means.”

U.S. officials said last week that election systems in Illinois and Arizona had been hacked and that Russia was most likely responsible. Russian hackers also have been blamed for intrusions into records of the Democratic National Committee and the House Democrats’ campaign organization.

Earth to Obama: It's already the "wild, wild West" out there in cyberspace. 

Russia denies that it has carried out any cyberattacks in the U.S. Mr. Putin called the accusations against Russia by U.S. officials an attempt to “distract the public’s attention.”

“At the state level, we certainly weren’t involved in this,” Mr. Putin said.
But the Russian leader said the release of information hacked from the DNC was a benefit.

“It doesn’t really matter who hacked this data from Mrs. Clinton’s campaign headquarters,” Mr. Putin said, referring to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, in an interview with Bloomberg News. “The important thing is the content was given to the public.”

The hacking of the DNC material showed an apparent bias among top party officials against Mrs. Clinton’s top challenger for the presidential nomination, Sen. Bernard Sanders.

Mr. Obama said cyberwarfare was “a topic of conversation with President Putin, as it has been with other countries.” But he said he didn’t want to take part in a cyberspace arms race.

“We’re going to have enough problems in the cyberspace with non-state actors who are engaging in theft and using the internet for all kinds of illicit practices,” Mr. Obama said, adding that he pushed for foreign governments to adopt “norms” for online activity. “We’ve started to get some willingness on the part of countries … to adopt these norms, but we’ve got to make sure we’re observing them.”

The president said the U.S. has the ability to wreak havoc on the internet if Washington so desired.

“We’re moving into a new era here where a number of countries have significant capacities,” he said. “And, frankly, we got more capacity than anybody both offensively and defensively.”

Obama reminds me of former secretary of state Henry Stimson, who shut down the forerunner of the NSA in the 1920s because, as he put it, "gentlemen don't read other gentlemen's mail." 

Now he wants Russia and China to follow "norms" of behavior as if the deadly game of cyber-warfare could be regulated as Obama wants to regulate the coal or auto industry.  Is he really this stupid?  Or is he just naive?

Obama thinks abjuring a tit-for-tat cyber-response makes us strong.  In fact, it makes us and him look like weak sisters.  Russia should be told in no uncertain terms that any attempt to hack our election will bring the wrath of God upon that country. 

In the wild, wild West, the good guys knew how to defend themselves.  In Obama's world, cowering in the corner is standard operating procedure. 

President Obama emerged from a 90-minute meeting with Russian president Putin and announced there would be no retaliation for Russia's suspected hack of the DNC files and other political targets.

I'm sure this pleases Putin, who is now suspected of creating a covert operation to destroy American democracy by hacking the upcoming election.

Washington Times:

“We’ve had problems with cyberintrusions from Russia in the past, from other countries in the past,” Mr. Obama said.

But he suggested that he didn’t want to retaliate.

“Our goal is not to suddenly in the cyber arena duplicate a cycle of escalation that we saw when it comes to other arms races in the past, but rather to start instituting some norms so that everybody’s acting responsibly,” Mr. Obama said. “What we cannot do is have a situation in which suddenly this becomes the wild, wild West, where countries that have significant cybercapacity start engaging in unhealthy competition or conflict through these means.”

U.S. officials said last week that election systems in Illinois and Arizona had been hacked and that Russia was most likely responsible. Russian hackers also have been blamed for intrusions into records of the Democratic National Committee and the House Democrats’ campaign organization.

Earth to Obama: It's already the "wild, wild West" out there in cyberspace. 

Russia denies that it has carried out any cyberattacks in the U.S. Mr. Putin called the accusations against Russia by U.S. officials an attempt to “distract the public’s attention.”

“At the state level, we certainly weren’t involved in this,” Mr. Putin said.
But the Russian leader said the release of information hacked from the DNC was a benefit.

“It doesn’t really matter who hacked this data from Mrs. Clinton’s campaign headquarters,” Mr. Putin said, referring to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, in an interview with Bloomberg News. “The important thing is the content was given to the public.”

The hacking of the DNC material showed an apparent bias among top party officials against Mrs. Clinton’s top challenger for the presidential nomination, Sen. Bernard Sanders.

Mr. Obama said cyberwarfare was “a topic of conversation with President Putin, as it has been with other countries.” But he said he didn’t want to take part in a cyberspace arms race.

“We’re going to have enough problems in the cyberspace with non-state actors who are engaging in theft and using the internet for all kinds of illicit practices,” Mr. Obama said, adding that he pushed for foreign governments to adopt “norms” for online activity. “We’ve started to get some willingness on the part of countries … to adopt these norms, but we’ve got to make sure we’re observing them.”

The president said the U.S. has the ability to wreak havoc on the internet if Washington so desired.

“We’re moving into a new era here where a number of countries have significant capacities,” he said. “And, frankly, we got more capacity than anybody both offensively and defensively.”

Obama reminds me of former secretary of state Henry Stimson, who shut down the forerunner of the NSA in the 1920s because, as he put it, "gentlemen don't read other gentlemen's mail." 

Now he wants Russia and China to follow "norms" of behavior as if the deadly game of cyber-warfare could be regulated as Obama wants to regulate the coal or auto industry.  Is he really this stupid?  Or is he just naive?

Obama thinks abjuring a tit-for-tat cyber-response makes us strong.  In fact, it makes us and him look like weak sisters.  Russia should be told in no uncertain terms that any attempt to hack our election will bring the wrath of God upon that country. 

In the wild, wild West, the good guys knew how to defend themselves.  In Obama's world, cowering in the corner is standard operating procedure.