Cyber relevant portions of SecDef Panetta’s 12/18 speech

Dec 18th, 2012 Current Affairs

Via the DOD website, SecDef Panetta gave a speech on Tuesday, 12/18, to the National Press Club.  I’ve highlighted and copied the cyber relevant portions of his speech below . . . nothing major (at least as I read it), but he does suggest that the Cyber ROEs may be done.

Increasing military spending by rising powers in the Asia Pacific region and turmoil across the Middle East and North Africa are altering the strategic landscape.  At the same time, the nature of military conflict is changing because of the new technologies, like cyber and the proliferation of missiles and WMD.

. . .

We will continue to face terrorism and deadly attacks by IEDs, but we must also be ready for more capable adversaries to attack our forces and our homeland in cyberspace, to attack and launch precision strikes against forward bases, to attempt to cripple our power grid, our financial systems, our government systems, to attempt to deny us freedom of action through asymmetric attacks.

. . .

Over the past year, we reached major agreements with Japan to realign our forces and jointly develop Guam as a strategic hub.  We’ve worked to strengthen cooperation with the Republic of Korea in space, in cyberspace, in intelligence.

. . .

We have protected investments in countering weapons of mass destruction and accelerated testing of mobile air-sampling systems and ground sensors for nuclear forensics, and we are significantly increasing our cyber capabilities, including our greatest asset — talented, bright manpower.

The department has also recently developed new rules of engagement in cyberspace that clarify our mission to defend the nation and will enable us to more quickly respond to cyber threats.  We are also protecting our ability to re-grow and mobilize the force by emphasizing our Guard and our reserve readiness and protecting a strong industrial base.  If we face a crisis, if I have to mobilize, the last damn thing I can do is to contract that responsibility out to another country.  I have got to rely on our industrial security base to be there and be able to respond.

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