August 30, 2010, - 10:43 am

SCARY But Ignored: Terrorist Spies Successfully Infiltrated Top Classified US Cyber-Files

By Debbie Schlussel

For years after 9/11, the U.S. did little to fight cyber-attacks by Islamic terrorists and others.  For eight years, George “Faux-Counterterrorism” Bush and for nearly two years of Obama, we went through useless, incompetent cyber-terrorism officials who did nothing. For most of the last nine years after the attacks, the FBI didn’t even have e-mail, despite a bloated budget for computers and other cyber-activity. And, as I told you in March, a TSA employee was allowed to remain at his computer–and inserted a virus–after he knew his TSA employment was terminated.  We simply do not take cyber-security seriously.


Last week, the story of a successful Middle Eastern invasion at the heart of our most vital online secrets came out but was largely ignored in favor of less important symbolism like the two-blocks-from-Ground-Zero mosque.  I wonder–and doubt–if a single person was fired over this cyber-screw-up, which jeopardized who knows how many lives of American spies, soldiers, and other operatives.  And, remember, this took place under the “counterterrorism” Prez in 2008, the same guy who did nothing but welcome Muslims to our shores for eight years and pander to them like the current guy.  The attack was so serious that President Bush was briefed on it, but did little other than briefly ban the use of portable flash drives.  Yeah, I’ll bet that worked (so easy to enforce, right?). But, no worries, Bush–and for a time, Obama–continued to use the same failed cybersecurity pointchick and adviser, Melissa Hathaway.

Writing in Foreign Affairs, Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn III disclosed the heretofore classified incident:

In 2008, the U.S. Department of Defense suffered a significant compromise of its classified military computer networks. It began when an infected flash drive was inserted into a U.S. military laptop at a base in the Middle East. The flash drive’s malicious computer code, placed there by a foreign intelligence agency, uploaded itself onto a network run by the U.S. Central Command. That code spread undetected on both classified and unclassified systems, establishing what amounted to a digital beachhead, from which data could be transferred to servers under foreign control. It was a network administrator’s worst fear: a rogue program operating silently, poised to deliver operational plans into the hands of an unknown adversary.

This previously classified incident was the most significant breach of U.S. military computers ever, and it served as an important wake-up call. The Pentagon’s operation to counter the attack, known as Operation Buckshot Yankee, marked a turning point in U.S. cyberdefense strategy. . .

The 2008 intrusion that led to Operation Buckshot Yankee was not the only successful penetration. Adversaries have acquired thousands of files from U.S. networks and from the networks of U.S. allies and industry partners, including weapons blueprints, operational plans, and surveillance data.

And what have we done about it . . . other than come up with a fancy name for an “operation”? Little, it seems.

How much classified information was garnered by that flash drive infection? What names of informants and U.S. operatives were obtained and compromised? How many of them died because of this screw up? Whom do we suspect insert the flash drive? Was it an innocent U.S. official, unaware of the infection? Was it someone more sinister, who knew what he/she was doing? Do we have any idea? I’ll bet we don’t. And I’ll bet we haven’t completely gotten rid of the infection either. As is typical with the feds, likely little was done. We’re too busy with the important stuff like Ramadan Iftar dinner visits and kissing Saudi and Jordanian and Turkish butt.

Oh, and by the way, in a sign of the adequacy of the government’s ability to deal with such incursions, Deputy Secretary Lynn notes,

It takes the Pentagon 81 months to make a new computer system operational after it is first funded. . . . The iPhone was developed in 24 months.

Hey, I’d be far more confident with Steven Jobs running our cybersecurity than either Bush or Obama. They failed, especially Bush, since this happened on his watch and he had more than seven years to rise to the occasion of 9/11 . . . and never did. Too busy pandering to the Gulf state sheikhs who would fund his Presidential library and taking their garbage and refuse onto our shores as entitlement-abusing illegal aliens.

We’re the U.S. Government. And we’re here to help you.


BTW, I’m sure I’ll get hatemail and unhinged partisan comments about “blaming Bush.” Sorry, but he was Prez in 2008, when this happened. I suppose I’m supposed to blame Obama?

To all the ignorant hate-mailers who refuse to face facts, I blame you for this as much as I blame Bush, because for eight years, you were asleep, you were silent. Why did it take a liberal in the White House to wake you up? Because you are morons, no different than the sheep on the left. And you are the death of us as much as they are.

Nope, I still don’t miss him yet. If you do, you weren’t paying attention for eight years and are part of the problem, NOT the solution.

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20 Responses

“Why did it take a liberal in the White House to wake you up? Because you are morons, no different than the sheep on the left.”

Well technically, as Americans, you’re all morons. 😉

Tom on August 30, 2010 at 11:10 am

Most people out there like to think we have some geek squad on steroids watching stuff 24/7. It’s just too bad that the enemy has such an easy time with our defenses on every front. From rules of engagement in the field to the way our law enforcement has to stay far from mosques where the deeds are planned and recruiting is done.

samurai on August 30, 2010 at 11:12 am

Americans don’t even know how to protect their computers. Why would they expect the federal government to do that any better than them on its own network?

NormanF on August 30, 2010 at 11:54 am

“Last week, the story of a successful Middle Eastern invasion at the heart of our most vital online secrets came out but was largely ignored in favor of less important symbolism like the two-blocks-from-Ground-Zero mosque. ”

This sentence illustrates why I love coming here. While the Ground Zero Mosque story is important, this is what happens to even those of us who are political junkies when the media focuses on the bait and switch refocusing con they love to do so much. Priorities.

Then again, millions don’t have a clue. They have no idea what a luxury it is just to be focused on some ugly, slutty Italian hornbag like the Ruth Buzzy look-a-like Lady Gaga.

It’s important to know what to call GWB on because believe me, there was room for criticism on many fronts. Trouble was the left instead of focusing on true issues they could have called him on, had to make up and demonize GWB in a total fake way. They resorted to fabulism in lieu of facts…and there were many out there. Here, we get the good guts.

Now, with Zero at the helm, the whole deal is slowing cracking and falling apart. No worries, let’s all go look at that fugly slag Lady Gaga naked body surf. After all, once the ruling class or Islamofacists takes over, we’ll still be able to partake in such hedonistic, mindless entertainment once the society is redone, right?

Skunky on August 30, 2010 at 11:56 am

    Skunky, haven’t you said you are Italian? No matter, why is it necessary to denigrate us by reminding everyone that Gaga is one? Unfortunately, a wonderful and uplifting story about Italy deciding officially that Islam is being denied tax exempt status. I saw if first on that blog whose name is not permitted here, so I had to hunt around for another link. Italy got it right big time. Forget the gagas of this world, that’s not Italy or Italians.

    mk750 on August 30, 2010 at 12:59 pm

      I meant Italy is denying Islam tax exempt status because it is not a religion! Got that? Italy says; “Islam is not a religion.”

      mk750 on August 30, 2010 at 1:01 pm

      mk750 on August 30, 2010 at 12:59 pm

      Mk, the fact that you would even think that would equate Lady Gaga with macro Italians has me laughing and annoyed at the same time. This is PC crap I just won’t even address. You are like the PC scold here and it’s very annoying. Just sayin’.

      And since I hate PC with a passion, I will not disclose whether I am Italian or not.

      Skunky on August 30, 2010 at 2:17 pm

        Um, Skunky, in your post at 11:56 am you said; “Then again, millions don’t have a clue. They have no idea what a luxury it is just to be focused on some ugly, slutty Italian hornbag like the Ruth Buzzy look-a-like Lady Gaga.”

        You are the one who mentioned LG’s ethnicity and connected it to her lack of morals. I asked you why? I’m not the one who linked them. As for your PC-ness, You revealed yourself with the term “macro Italians”

        mk750 on August 30, 2010 at 2:53 pm

          Oh and Skunky, I am proud to be a Macro Italian Macro Jew

          mk750 on August 30, 2010 at 2:54 pm

          MK750, it is so sad how PC you are. Get over it.

          In the new skankfest Vanity Fair, dear skank LG refers to herself as an “Italian slut”. Take it up with her.

          The thing more troubling than your PC whinging is to take on the levity (yet at the same time apropos) part of my post rather than the crux of my post. You’re engaging in the same sleight-of-hand crap this thread takes on. But I am answering you so others don’t make your same dumb mistake. Hope others don’t embarrass themselves as you so easily do.

          Skunky on August 30, 2010 at 3:11 pm

In a way, the Ground Zero mosque story is the end result of this unfettered immigration from Middle Eastern countries that was permitted under ‘Dubyah’. But as far as Lady Gaga – really, the comparisons of her appearance (skanky and sleazy as it is) to Ruth Buzzi are an insult – to Ms. Buzzi.

ConcernedPatriot on August 30, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    ConcernedPatriot on August 30, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    Duly noted, CP. I hated to insult Ms. Buzzi, but the comparison makes me laugh and I hate to see someone so skanky thinking that they are so sexy “hot” when they really are spectacularly ugly. I was not about to compare the tragic shocker to a beautiful celebrity…because she ain’t.

    Skunky on August 30, 2010 at 12:45 pm

Stories like this one are the reason why this website is so important, and why I read it daily. Thank you, Debbie, for once again demonstrating how clueless and incompetent our government is with respect to protecting us from the global jihad that is besieging us, about which our government apparently has but little awareness and comprehension. But what are we to do? Those seeking office who rail against “radical Islam” or Muslim extremists” demonstrate, by the mere use of such terms, a complete ignorance of the menace of Islam itself, and persist in subscribing to the myth that there is a moderate, peaceful version of Islam which most Muslims embrace. None of these politicians understand that mainstream Muslims, even if they prefer nonviolence to terrorism, are nevertheless believers in Sharia who hold our secular Constitution in contempt, and for this reason alone comprise a threat to our existence. There are so very few aspiring political leaders who are fully aware of the threat Muslims pose to the rest of us, and even fewer who do and are willing to publicly acknowledge what they know, thereby risking their political careers – and in some cases, their physical well-being – by speaking plainly about it.

commonsense on August 30, 2010 at 12:29 pm

We shouldn’t confuse this matter with the Islamic threat – yes, there’s some overlap. I’d commend to you all Richard Clarke’s recently published “Cyber War”. He was Clinton’s assistant for counter-terror, then was shunted from that role under Bush by then NSC head Condoleza Rice, at which point he started working on cyber-security issues.

“Cyber War” provides a good overview of the threat and where it comes from, and those primarily targeting us are China, Russia and North Korea. (No doubt many Muslim students of computer science have also been recruited as cyber-warriors, thus the overlap.) He also makes clear that the more “wired” the society, the more vulnerable. And we’re among the most wired, with everything from your local Target to your local bank to the local power station on-line. One scary demonstration showed how a hacker could get into a power plant’s control system and drive a generator to the point of self-destruction. He also describes incidents where foreign interests have basically scooped up wholesale information about our most advanced weapons systems.

Raymond in DC on August 30, 2010 at 12:47 pm

This also applies to private industry. The US gives out way to many H1B visas to Chinese technical professionals, who come over here, work for a few years in some highly technical field, then take this information back to China so that they can steal our intellectual property and patents.

Jarhead on August 30, 2010 at 1:18 pm

Maybe that’s how Wikileaks got the information…Funny now isn’t it how National Security issues are not even in the top 5 concerns for the American electorate anymore.. Good plan though, make the American people piss ass poor and the whole argument changes.

Good piece, but personally I would take Bush back in a second compared to this dude, he has more power than Bush ever could have dreamed of having.. Either way, it’s like my uncle say. “After Reagan left the damage was done”.. It will take us 30 years just to bring it back to where it was, let alone where it should be.

sharon on August 30, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Skunky, I’ve never been PC or any other way “correct” to be liked. In fact, far too many people, including our own Dear Debbie, tell me I’m too blunt. I fail to see where objecting to your repeated reference to LG’s Italian roots is PCism. If she were black and there were constant references to it, you wouldn’t tolerate the connection with her being black or anything else and a slut. She’s despicable and stupid for referring to herself that way but you are participating. You are blatantly lying here denying you brought up the Italian issue and when you were called on it, you deny. Talk about being PC! I am sick of being associated with sluts, gangsters and lowlifes. Those are not the Italians I know and grew up among. I am sick of people not believing my father got to medical school on his own merit and that he needed the Mob to get him in. I’m sick of lewd comments simply because I’m an Italian woman. Some days a burka looks like a good option. I’m sick of being thought stupid, cowed and lazy for the same reason. I’m sick of people thinking wife beating is somehow ok in Italian law and society. I’m sick of people looking at the worst which in every other group except maybe Jews, would be roundly condemned but somehow it’s ok to do to Italians. I mean we’re just a bunch of guidos and their bimbos, aren’t we? We’re not the people of Leonardo Da Vinci, Cristopher Columbus, Galileo or Verdi, NO, all we are is the slimiest part of American life. Stop being a hater and hiding behind calling others “politically correct hacks.”

mk750 on August 31, 2010 at 4:05 am

    mk750 on August 31, 2010 at 4:05 am

    You are unstable and embarrass yourself by telling too much personal info and you bleed all over the place. Take it up with your shrink. Go play on the Daily Kos or HuffPo because you love to read PC crap where it ain’t. It’ll be kismet for you.

    If the skank refers to herself as a slutty Italian, I will too. Free country still. Get lost.

    Skunky on August 31, 2010 at 11:33 am

The US government is too damn big for its own good.

P. Aaron on September 1, 2010 at 7:44 am

Oh man what is it cyber counter terrorism for dip shits on parade with Mo,Larry and Curly as our so called security professionals? Sad to say it’s not the first time there have been
breaches there was a big blunder covered in the 9/11 Timeline report the feds had a double agent named Ali Mohammed unfortunately Mr Ali was more loyal to Al Qeada than to the West of course there were indications of that like the fact he was failing his mandatory lie detector tests and making trips to Somalia but yet somehow he kept his security clearance at one point that guy actually worked at a location that made the Trident missile switches to this day no one knows whether he had access to the main computer but guess it isn’t a problem anymore because apparently he was killed if I remember the news report correctly engaging in the Mumbai attacks. Still find it scary the security clearance he got.

Jennifer on March 1, 2017 at 11:43 am

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