Analysis & Opinions - The Diplomat

Can China Be Deterred in Cyber Space?

| February 3, 2016

Deterring state actors from attacks that do not reach the level of force is difficult.

If we look at the cyber realm, the effectiveness of deterrence depends on who (state or non-state) one tries to deter and which of their behaviors.  Ironically, deterring major states like China from acts of force may be easier than deterring non-state actors from actions that do not rise to the level of force. The threat of a bolt from the blue attack by a major state may have been exaggerated. Major state actors are more likely to be entangled in interdependence than are many non-state actors, and American declaratory policy has made clear that deterrence is not limited to cyber against cyber but can be cross domain with any weapons of our choice....

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For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation: Nye, Joseph S..“Can China Be Deterred in Cyber Space?.” The Diplomat, February 3, 2016.