Level of Education
The growth of cyberspace has challenged existing frameworks for strategic competition. As a result, government, private, and academic planners seek to develop a novel framework for integrating cyberspace into diplomatic, military, and intelligence planning. This has been a difficult proposition and continues to be an area of vulnerability for the United States. To date, the United States has threatened nuclear retaliation for large scale cyber-attacks, but a comprehensive strategy has not been made publicly clear. However, this integration challenge has been encountered and solved previously. Nuclear weapons changed warfare in the twentieth century, but the United States used Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) and Counterproliferation to adapt to the new warfront. This paper seeks to dissect the nuclear strategy, apply the extracted fundamental principles in creating a loose integration framework, and propose policy measures to implement that framework. The advent of nuclear and cyberweapons shares intrinsic similarity, making such a comparison viable. As proposed in this paper, the cyber strategy would treat near-peer actors differently from non-peer and non-state actors. Against near-peers, it would emphasize survivability and deterrence with implanted exploits or survivable data center infrastructure. For non-peers and non-states, it calls for development of military mission areas to prevent cyberweapon proliferation. Such a dualistic approach may provide a reasonable framework for integrating the cyberspace into international competition and allow the United States to adapt in the technology age.
Pattara, Peter R.
"Cyber Mutually Assured Destruction & Counterproliferation for the 21st Century: “How I stopped worrying and learned to love the software exploit.”,"
Liberty University Journal of Statesmanship & Public Policy: Vol. 1:
2, Article 6.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.liberty.edu/jspp/vol1/iss2/6