Georgia’s Cyber Left Hook

SSI

Georgian-Russian hostilities in South Ossetia have generated a substantial amount of analysis and speculation regarding the accompanying cyber conflict.5 Most of the focus has centered on identifying the parties who conducted the cyber attacks. The Georgian cyber event provides an intriguing opportunity to examine a more subtle and perhaps overlooked aspect of cyber conflict—the concept of cyber neutrality. The Georgian case raises two fundamental questions: (1) How did the combined actions of the Georgian government and US information technology (IT) companies impact American status as a cyber neutral? (2) Can the United States remain neutral (or cyber neutral) during a cyber conflict?

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