« »

Friday, June 28, 2013

Justice Dept. targeting retired general in leak probe

Washington Post: A retired four-star Marine Corps general who served as the nation’s second-ranking military officer is a target of a Justice Department investigation into a leak of information about a covert U.S.-Israeli cyberattack on Iran’s nuclear program, a senior Obama administration official said.

Retired Gen. James E. “Hoss” Cartwright served as deputy chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and was part of President Obama’s inner circle on a range of critical national security issues before he retired in 2011.

The administration official said that Cartwright is suspected of revealing information about a highly classified effort to use a computer virus later dubbed Stuxnet to sabotage equipment in Iranian nuclear enrichment plants.

Stuxnet was part of a broader cyber campaign called Olympic Games that was disclosed by the New York Times last year as one of the first major efforts by the United States to use computer code as a destructive weapon against a key adversary.
So what’s the difference between being a “target" and being a “the accused"? Practically none, apparently. “A target is a suspect in a criminal case who has not yet been indicted but is expected to be," the paper informs us. “Federal prosecutors are not required to tell targets that they are under investigation but it is not uncommon for them to do so in cases when an indictment is likely."

What’s not clear is why Cartwright would leak this information. The report gives no motive.

You might remember that Stuxnet spread from Iran’s networks, where it was “believed to have destroyed as many as 1,000 of Iran’s 6,000 centrifuges," to the internet, where it raised “concern about the potential that government-sponsored viruses could cause widespread and unintentional harm."

[photo via Wikimedia Commons]

Search Archive:

Custom Search