Obama Ordered The "Code Stux"

Tyler Durden's picture


When Iran's nuclear facilities were publicly crippled in 2011 by what then was considered a revolutionary computer virus which destroys physical equipment, many immediately assumed the virus originated in Israel for obvious reasons. They were wrong. In what can be described as the first presidentially-mandated and condoned act of cyberwarfare, one circumventing the War Powers Act of course, the NYT informs us that the order to physically impair Iranian sovereignty came from none other than the Nobel Peace prize winning president: Barack Obama.

From the NYT:

From his first months in office, President Obama secretly ordered increasingly sophisticated attacks on the computer systems that run Iran's main nuclear enrichment facilities, significantly expanding America's first sustained use of cyberweapons, according to participants in the program.


Mr. Obama decided to accelerate the attacks - begun in the Bush administration and code-named Olympic Games - even after an element of the program accidentally became public in the summer of 2010 because of a programming error that allowed it to escape Iran's Natanz plant and sent it around the world on the Internet. Computer security experts who began studying the worm, which had been developed by the United States and Israel, gave it a name: Stuxnet.


At a tense meeting in the White House Situation Room within days of the worm's "escape," Mr. Obama, Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and the director of the Central Intelligence Agency at the time, Leon E. Panetta, considered whether America's most ambitious attempt to slow the progress of Iran's nuclear efforts had been fatally compromised.


"Should we shut this thing down?" Mr. Obama asked, according to members of the president's national security team who were in the room.


Told it was unclear how much the Iranians knew about the code, and offered evidence that it was still causing havoc, Mr. Obama decided that the cyberattacks should proceed. In the following weeks, the Natanz plant was hit by a newer version of the computer worm, and then another after that. The last of that series of attacks, a few weeks after Stuxnet was detected around the world, temporarily took out nearly 1,000 of the 5,000 centrifuges Iran had spinning at the time to purify uranium.


This account of the American and Israeli effort to undermine the Iranian nuclear program is based on interviews over the past 18 months with current and former American, European and Israeli officials involved in the program, as well as a range of outside experts. None would allow their names to be used because the effort remains highly classified, and parts of it continue to this day.

For those confused - yes: this is an act of war. A New Normal war.

It appears to be the first time the United States has repeatedly used cyberweapons to cripple another country's infrastructure, achieving, with computer code, what until then could be accomplished only by bombing a country or sending in agents to plant explosives. The code itself is 50 times as big as the typical computer worm, Carey Nachenberg, a vice president of Symantec, one of the many groups that have dissected the code, said at a symposium at Stanford University in April. Those forensic investigations into the inner workings of the code, while picking apart how it worked, came to no conclusions about who was responsible.

And still America continues to wage war, subverting the constitution, without any Congressional approval, and without even telling the population what is really happening. Because it is "for its own good."

A similar process is now under way to figure out the origins of another cyberweapon called Flame that was recently discovered to have attacked the computers of Iranian officials, sweeping up information from those machines. But the computer code appears to be at least five years old, and American officials say that it was not part of Olympic Games. They have declined to say whether the United States was responsible for the Flame attack.

The "New Normal Gulf of Tonkin":

Mr. Obama, according to participants in the many Situation Room meetings on Olympic Games, was acutely aware that with every attack he was pushing the United States into new territory, much as his predecessors had with the first use of atomic weapons in the 1940s, of intercontinental missiles in the 1950s and of drones in the past decade. He repeatedly expressed concerns that any American acknowledgment that it was using cyberweapons - even under the most careful and limited circumstances - could enable other countries, terrorists or hackers to justify their own attacks.


"We discussed the irony, more than once," one of his aides said. Another said that the administration was resistant to developing a "grand theory for a weapon whose possibilities they were still discovering." Yet Mr. Obama concluded that when it came to stopping Iran, the United States had no other choice.


If Olympic Games failed, he told aides, there would be no time for sanctions and diplomacy with Iran to work. Israel could carry out a conventional military attack, prompting a conflict that could spread throughout the region.

Some call it irony, others collateral damage where people lose everything, including their lives. Semantics.

Remember though: they hate America for its freedoms.

Mr. Obama has repeatedly told his aides that there are risks to using - and particularly to overusing - the weapon. In fact, no country's infrastructure is more dependent on computer systems, and thus more vulnerable to attack, than that of the United States. It is only a matter of time, most experts believe, before it becomes the target of the same kind of weapon that the Americans have used, secretly, against Iran.

And it will be a shock, SHOCK  when the world retaliates against America.

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Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:45 | 2484393 XitSam
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For the record, I thought we had hackers actively taking down systems during the Bosnian conflict.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:53 | 2484424 Kestrel_1
Kestrel_1's picture

For sure, everyone is engaged in cyber warfare and has been for some time.  China stole military secrects so many times over the years.  http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/military/news/3319656

Its fun to read for a few minutes all the haters hang obama (metaphorically of course).  1-up Marginal Call.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:07 | 2484484 karzai_luver
karzai_luver's picture

a true nutso opinion, is there any evidence that Rombamma would be more lenient toward those horrible mulla dudes?


what are you smoking.


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:41 | 2484613 Marginal Call
Marginal Call's picture

It's not a question of "would Romney be more lenient".  Of course he wouldn't.  


It's a question of "is Obama tough enough?" to satisfy Bibi.  If the answer is no, the velvet glove comes off, and they go with the hammer. 

Sat, 06/02/2012 - 19:19 | 2487949 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

Rothschilds in China since Kissinger opened the doors, when Nixon admin "went off the gold standard" - it's a narrative for people who like their stories already told. . .

nationstates are fictions, tales told by those who know better - believed in by those who don't.  fill in any blanks with personal beliefs, and viola!  sides be taken, haters be hatin'

fun to follow the twisted tales "released to the media" - I mean, c'mon, the NEW YAWK TIMES?????   why is this not questioned, or more pointedly - LOL'd at??

because it fits the narrative(s). . .

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:16 | 2484251 Manthong
Manthong's picture

They need something big to distract from what they have done to the money system and the markets.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:13 | 2484515 prodigious_idea
prodigious_idea's picture

Sort of a twist on the Bread and Circuses concept?

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:23 | 2484291 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

"Plus the Chinese will sell anything for oil"

is that better or worse than bombing anything for oil?

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:54 | 2484429 Spastica Rex
Spastica Rex's picture

It's feminine, so it must be worse.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 13:56 | 2485036 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

When I I think of the feminine, it's usually verse.


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 14:24 | 2485199 Spastica Rex
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Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:11 | 2484506 GMadScientist
GMadScientist's picture

It's not so much the selling anything as the doing anything for a reserve buck.

Ask the workers at Foxconn and the Chinese environment how they feel about the matter.


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:03 | 2484468 Chump
Chump's picture

Exactly.  Just wait until China uses any of those backdoors or Iran has the audacity to return fire.  Those would be the real acts of war, amirite?  When we do it it's just a pre-emptive tactical strike.  Very smart, very moral.  Think of the chil'run.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:09 | 2484493 karzai_luver
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China bckdoors are in this country. good times for all.

Nothing fails like those who know they are the "smartest guy in the room".


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:04 | 2484164 Ruffcut
Ruffcut's picture

Next we will find out that he used the cyber weapon to pad his campaign account taking the loot from MF global, and his buddy corzine gave the team all the codes. Like taking cocaine away from charlie sheen.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:27 | 2484316 Alea Iactaest
Alea Iactaest's picture

No, we'll find out the software was used to secure sufficent votes to retain the Presidency.

Strike that. We'll never hear about that one.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:08 | 2484205 john39
john39's picture

>>>Or Israel ordered Obummer to accept fault!

this seems like the correct interpretation.  especially with the new discovery of the Flame malware/spyware coming out....   i get a good chuckle listening to the MSM talking heads talk around the obvious fact that Isreal is behind flame as well.  they can't even say the word Isreal.


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:37 | 2484367 Chupacabra-322
Chupacabra-322's picture

@ Pladizpow,

you left out the Mossad.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:56 | 2484442 bob_dabolina
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When does Obama and Pelosi thank speculators for the drop in oil prices?

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:51 | 2484651 pkea
pkea's picture

don't the iranians have a closed network at their nuclear facilities? pretty sure it is not an open one.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:03 | 2484145 Poetic injustice
Poetic injustice's picture

For such a great idea you should get peace AND economy prize.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:08 | 2484200 williambanzai7
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Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:15 | 2484238 HoofHearted
HoofHearted's picture

So he's macho GIJoe type and he is a gay president. How much luckier can a country get???

(Do I even need the /sarc tag?)

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:34 | 2484319 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

good one Banzai

"started in the bush administration but significantly increased during the Obama administration"

...just like the budget

now Johnny, I want you to write 100 times: "all presidents will get exponentially worse until this place blows"

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:49 | 2484411 Augustus
Augustus's picture

I suppose that if O'Bummer decided to actually bomb Iran he could blame that on Bush as the aircraft was purchased by the Bush administration.  This A$$ will give away any element of national security, then blame someone else for making him do it.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:49 | 2484408 Cpl Hicks
Cpl Hicks's picture


Does "Dinner with Barack" come with the First Wookie and a complementary gaylo?

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:50 | 2484415 takinthehighway
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WB, do you have a composite photo of Obama/Romney to go with the one of Obama/Bush?

Thanks for your brilliant work and all the chuckles.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:47 | 2484223 xtop23
xtop23's picture

Thanks for helping with the pirates the other day gents. That good press bought you 2 weeks.

Now be a good little vassal and bend over please,

Daddy O needs to bring in the big win and the petrodollar scam must be protected at all costs.

Your bypass of SWIFT utilizing gold was a bridge too far.

Queue the war drums and a full scale media blitz with Hannity hawking polaroids of Dr. Strangelove and the coming nuclear holocaust while McCain gesticulates on the Senate floor telling us that the rebels are the greatest people on the Earth and MUST be subsidized with weaponry and air suppport for democracy.


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:18 | 2484263 bonddude
bonddude's picture

Can we then expect Vote machine "code s t u x" ??? I think we know the answer.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:26 | 2484562 vast-dom
vast-dom's picture


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:49 | 2484648 pkea
pkea's picture

don't the iranians have a closed network for the nuclear facilities? it is hard to imagine that it is an open network....

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 14:30 | 2485241 DosZap
DosZap's picture

don't the iranians have a closed network for the nuclear facilities? it is hard to imagine that it is an open network....

Dood, there is no such thing any more.Only folks who think they are.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 10:57 | 2484105 Itch
Itch's picture

Euro heading for total headfuck!

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 10:58 | 2484107 phat ho
phat ho's picture

quiet, Quiet on the set..... and; ACTION

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:06 | 2484176 ArrestBobRubin
ArrestBobRubin's picture

That was the line used on the Lunar sets too!

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:19 | 2484272 KK Tipton
KK Tipton's picture

"We are on the fucking moon, over"

NASA finds the tapes - YouTube - http://bit.ly/Jy65xd




Fri, 06/01/2012 - 12:59 | 2484647 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture



NASA finds the [missing video] tapes.

Now, maybe they will finally find where they can put enough fuel in the Lunar Landing Module for both the retro-rocket descent and ascent stages.


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 13:45 | 2484993 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

HH, i like your posts, so let me give you a little friendly advice.  Don't call Buzz Aldrin a liar to his face.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 10:57 | 2484108 TwoJacks
TwoJacks's picture

isn't time for a little baseball?  where is wallstreetpro2 when you need him?

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 10:57 | 2484111 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

Is there video of them all sitting around the war room and watching the action live?

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:31 | 2484337 Marginal Call
Marginal Call's picture

You've seen him playing on his blackberry?  You saw it then. 

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 10:57 | 2484112 phat ho
phat ho's picture


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 10:57 | 2484114 Bill D. Cat
Bill D. Cat's picture

Dude sure has killed a bunch of people and blown a ton of shit up for a Nobel Peace Prize winner .

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:04 | 2484161 roadhazard
roadhazard's picture

 Don't forget that God is on his side too.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:24 | 2484300 LoneCapitalist
LoneCapitalist's picture

Which one?

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:29 | 2484321 xtop23
xtop23's picture


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:35 | 2484358 TuesdayBen
TuesdayBen's picture


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 14:54 | 2485357 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture


Which one?

Obama is a practitioner of Bale worship.

Total absorbtion - CHOOM!!!


Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:31 | 2484334 Papasmurf
Papasmurf's picture

He IS god.

Fri, 06/01/2012 - 11:06 | 2484184 WhyDoesItHurtWh...
WhyDoesItHurtWhen iPee's picture

Maybe Bush will get 2 Nobel Peace Prizes, one for each war he started.  And maybe a 3rd one for waterboarding? 

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