Fighting in the Fifth Dimension
It has been called the fifth dimension of warfare. Along with land, sea, air and space – the cyberworld is a new frontline. Innovations in technology are changing the tactics of modern-day conflict, introducing new tools to the world’s arsenal.
Helped by advances in electro-magnetics and modern information and communications technology, a new form of electronic warfare has been created. It is called cyberwar and is increasingly recognised by governments and the military as posing a potentially grave threat.
If you have a few smart people and a good computer, then you can do a lot. You don’t need an aircraft, you don’t need tanks, you don’t need an army. You can penetrate another country, create huge damage without even leaving your armchair.
And it is not just cyberwar that is a growing phenomenon. The internet has empowered cyberactivism, allowing people to share information and mobilise support to take direct action – both online and on the streets.
The so-called Arab Spring has been described as an electronic revolution. Protesters were turned into citizen journalists – taking frontline images on their mobile phones and uploading them via their computers for the world to see. The regimes may have jammed the signals of satellite news channels and banned international reporters from entering their country, but they were unable to prevent citizens from becoming reporters in their own right.
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