How American cities could cause the next financial crisis – MoneyWeek

“The states will secure their own shortfalls, and leave the cities to fend for themselves,” says Whitney. Effectively, the cities are the weakest link in the chain. They’re the ones that will end up going bust if anyone does. And investors aren’t prepared for that, she reckons. “I see a lack of transparency and an abundance of complacency on the part of investors and politicians, just as we saw before the banks imploded.”

Scary stuff. And obviously this isn’t great news if you live in one of these states.

How American cities could cause the next financial crisis – MoneyWeek

Stuxnet Analysis Supports Iran-Israel Connections | threatpost

The worm used a novel method to compromise the PLCs, with the first ever root kit program designed to control PLCs. O’Murchu told attendees that Stuxnet was highly targeted, looking for systems using a specific type of network adapter card by Profibus and connected to specific models of programmable logic controllers, Siemens model S7-300 and S7-400 devices. The virus also compromised specialized software known as Step 7 to program the PLC for specific tasks, inserting a rootkit to intercept and modify instructions sent to and from the PLC.

Stuxnet Analysis Supports Iran-Israel Connections | threatpost

The Stuxnet outbreak: A worm in the centrifuge | The Economist

A more plausible target is Iran’s uranium-enrichment plant at Natanz. Inspections by the International Atomic Energy Agency, the UN’s watchdog, have found that about half Iran’s centrifuges are idle and those that work are yielding little. Some say a fall in the number of working centrifuges at Natanz in early 2009 is evidence of a successful Stuxnet attack.

Last year Scott Borg of the United States Cyber-Consequences Unit, a think-tank, said that Israel might prefer to mount a cyber-attack rather than a military strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities. That could involve disrupting sensitive equipment such as centrifuges, he said, using malware introduced via infected memory sticks.

The Stuxnet outbreak: A worm in the centrifuge | The Economist

Syria reportedly signs pact with Hizbullah

The Syrian army signed a defense alliance with Hizbullah, a Kuwaiti paper reported on Monday.

According to the report in Al- Rai, in case of war, the two will split a “bank” of targets in Israel, and Syrian radars will supply Hizbullah operatives with intelligence on the location of Israeli aircraft, to assist Hizbullah in aiming anti-aircraft weapons.

Syria reportedly signs pact with Hizbullah

This article was reported on 8/30/2010.

Hizbullah Chemical War on Israel

This report is an example of Hezbollah’s chemical weapons storage. Presumably, Israel will be on the receiving end of these weapons in the next war. This article was originally reported on 9/3/2009.

A Kuwaiti report Thursday said that a mysterious explosion in a Hizbullah weapons warehouse six weeks ago involved chemical weapons, adding to the mounting evidence that the terrorist organization is preparing for chemical warfare against Israel.

New Threat: Hizbullah Chemical War on Israel – Defense/Middle East – Israel News – Israel National News

What the world doesn’t know about germ warfare.

The State Department’s new arms-control compliance report is out, the first since 2005, and the unclassified version shows that uncertainty about biological weapons still casts a shadow over the globe. Iran, North Korea, and Syria may have germ-warfare programs, and neither China nor Russia have come completely clean about their past.

Biohazard – By David E. Hoffman | Foreign Policy

10 signs the us is losing its influence in the western hemisphere

Brazil is first among the BRICs (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) — four economies that are supposed to overtake the six largest Western economies by 2032.

Mexico is first among the MAVINS (Mexico, Australia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Nigeria, and South Africa) — six economies we expect to blow away expectations and become leading powers in their regions relatively soon.

10 signs the us is losing its influence in the western hemisphere: Tech Ticker, Yahoo! Finance

Cyber Virus [Stuxnet] That Hits Siemens Systems Spreads In China – Xinhua – WSJ.com

A computer virus designed to attack industrial-control systems from Siemens AG (SI) has hit the computers of 6 million individuals and nearly 1,000 enterprises in China, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported Wednesday, in the latest sign of the spread of the virus.

Cyber Virus That Hits Siemens Systems Spreads In China – Xinhua – WSJ.com

In a Computer Worm [Stuxnet], a Possible Biblical Clue – NYTimes.com

That use of the word “Myrtus” — which can be read as an allusion to Esther — to name a file inside the code is one of several murky clues that have emerged as computer experts try to trace the origin and purpose of the rogue Stuxnet program, which seeks out a specific kind of command module for industrial equipment.

In a Computer Worm, a Possible Biblical Clue – NYTimes.com