It seemed to be a regular nightshift at the Natanz and Fordo nuclear facilities in Iran. Scientists were working on their computers, technicians were checking if everything goes well in order to raise the Islamic Republic into the priviliged group of nations having nuclear weapons power.
In the middle of the night the computers suddenly started playing “Thunderstruck” from AC/DC, then the automation network, an important element of the nuclear sites were shut down, causing a delay in the progress. Just as Stuxnet 2 years ago, this cyber attack was probably made and organised from Israel in order to interrupt Iran’s nuclear aspirations.
For Israel (and for most of the World) there is a bad and a worse scenario. The bad one is a war between the Jewish state and Iran, the worse is a nuclear Iran. The first one endangers the security of Israel, the second one endangers its very existence. And both can lead to an all-out Middle-Eastern war.
An Israeli attack against the dicatorship’s nuclear facilities wouldn’t be something new to the Israeli Air Force. They did it succesfully in Iraq in 1981, and in Syria in 2007. Israel has the most developed air force in the region, which can easily carry out a precise attack against a target without endangering civilian areas just as it happened in the above mentioned events. But now, there are a few problems with that. Seems like the Persians have more brain than the Arabs (no offense). Iraq and Syria have tried to build their nuclear plants at one place, making it easily and quickly destroyable. Iran has split it to several sites throughout the huge country. One quick action would not be enough this time. Another problem is the Irani long-range missiles, which can hit Israel. Also, Ahmadinejad’s answer would not be limited on military facilities, but might target residential areas. And Israel is a small country, whith most of its population residing in the tiny central coastal area around Tel-Aviv.
This last fact makes the second option, a nuclear Iran lethal to the Jewish state, and to millions of its inhabitants. Jerusalem has no other choice, than preventing Teheran from having atomic bombs no matter how high the cost will be.
The good news is: war might not be the only option. Sending viruses into the computer systems of nuclear sites as well as to military installations cause no civilian deaths, doesn’t destroy residential buildings, schools or hospitals. It seems to be the most humanistic option.
The last few worms which were probably sent by Israel could only delay the progress of achieving the technology of the atomic bomb, but could not completely stop it. Hopefully these ones were only the test for the real one, which will ultimately take the whole system down. I really hope it is possible, and a war will be avoidable.
Technology can always be used for good and bad causes. Nuclear power provides us with light and heating, but also enables us to kill more people in less time than ever. Helicopters help us to save lives by taking sick people to the hospitals quickly, as-well-as to bomb buidlings in war situations. Even a piece of paper can be used for a love letter or racistic incitement. Every invention gives us the opportunity to use it for peaceful or hostile purposes.
Computer viruses and hacking used to be considered as having only bad sides. Now they might have the chance to destroy Iran’s atomic aspirations and prevent a war, saving the lives of many Jews, Muslims and Christians.