Thursday, February 15, 2018

Will the US Nuke Russia Over Election Interference?

A Washington Post op-ed this morning lays out what seem reasonable approaches for defending the integrity of US elections.  The proposed first step is for the US to state that that it views any foreign attempt to influence our election processes through covert or clandestine means as an attack on the fundamental underpinnings of our system of government, that we will not tolerate such activity, and reserve the right to respond to such activities.”  
A second step recommends that Congress consider codifying the Obama administration’s designation of election systems as critical infrastructure.

The words "attack" and "critical infrastructure" caught my eye.  Those same words appear in the recently completed Nuclear Posture Review which states the US may use nuclear weapons in response to non-nuclear attacks which include cyber attacks on critical infrastructure.

If nuclear weapons are a valid response to attacks on critical infrastructure and election systems are critical infrastructure, then interfering in US elections is and attack on critical infrastructure could warrant a nuclear response.  At least that's where the logic leads.

The fact that our alleged president wholly rejects the idea of electoral interference and is therefore unlikely to take any action, much less launch a nuclear attack, is cold comfort.

A low threshold opens many doors.