Air Force manual describes shadowy cyberwar world

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A new Air Force manual for cyberwarfare describes a shadowy, fast-changing world where anonymous enemies can carry out devastating attacks in seconds and where conventional ideas about time and space don’t apply.

Much of the manual is a collection of definitions, acronyms and explanations of who reports to whom. But it occasionally veers into scenarios that sound more like computer games than flesh-and-blood warfare.

The manual was made public this month.

It dwells mostly on defending U.S. computer networks and makes little mention of attacking others.

Analysts say that could signal the Pentagon wants to keep offensive plans secret, or that its chief goal is defending the networks so other elements of the armed forces can use them.