Washington: US Department of State and Defence have taken a decision to retaliate jointly to the propaganda and information war initiated against the United States by Russia and other countries. The two departments have come to an understanding and the defence department is to make available a fund of 40 million USD to the Department of State. This fund is for the ‘Global Engagement Centre’ of the US Department of State and will be named as ‘Information Access Fund’.
In the last few days, there has been important hearing of the Defence and Intelligence agencies officials in the US Senate. During this hearing, these officials warned that the maximum threat to US security was from Russia, Cyberattacks and China. The Intelligence agency officials had primarily emphasised upon the threat of the cyberattacks and had warned of the Russian interference.
On this background, it is noteworthy that the US Department of State and Defence department have joined hands to take steps for the ‘Information war’. A campaign will be undertaken against false propaganda, news and misinformation, using funds from the ‘Information Access Fund’. Funds will be provided to civil groups, volunteer organisations, media houses, Government research, private companies and educational institutions for this purpose.
The US Department of State has published an independent statement about this. Steve Goldstein, the Under Secretary for ‘Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs’ within the US Department of State has supported this campaign. ‘We are initiating an aggressive campaign against anyone trying to malign the image and spread misinformation about the United States and this fund will prove extremely beneficial for this purpose. We intend to stress on strengthening the relations with our co-workers, Silicon Valley and the other partners for the action,’ said Goldstein.
Goldstein also warned that the new campaign is not a defensive position and the United States can also attack with an aggressive policy. There is a provision to make available a minimum fund of 1 million USD for quick action campaigns. The fund will promote creation of new ‘Messaging and Data Techniques’. At the same time ‘Global Engagement Centre’ is to implement some new projects developed by the US Defence Department.
The scale of the cyberattacks on the United States has consistently increased over the last decade and this has severely hit the security and economy of the United States. It was clear that the major participants in these attacks were countries like Russia, China, North Korea and Iran. It is learnt that the United States has developed ‘Cyberweapons’ to counter these attacks and is now preparing for a ‘Cyberwar’.