20 Mar 15. China’s Defense Ministry on Friday denied that it had anything to do with a cyber attack on Register.com, a unit of Web.com, following a report in the Financial Times that the FBI was looking into the Chinese military’s involvement. “The relevant criticism that China’s military participated in Internet hacking is to play the same old tune, and is totally baseless,” the ministry said in a fax to Reuters in response to a question about the story. According to the Financial Times, hackers apparently have had access to Register.com’s network for about a year, but the attack did not disrupt or result in theft of client data. It is not clear what the Chinese military would be looking for or what it would gain from Register.com’s data. Register.com says on its website it manages more than 2.5 million domain names, and also provides web management and design services. China and the United States regularly accuse each other of hacking attacks. State news agency Xinhua, citing a report from the National Computer Network Emergency Response Technical Team/Coordination Center of China, said that last year, 4,761 IP addresses in the United States controlled 5,580 Chinese websites through backdoor programs, allowing remote access to a computer. It did not provide an on-year comparison. The ministry repeated the government’s standard line that China is one of the world’s biggest victims of hacking. “The Chinese government has all along resolutely opposed and dealt with in accordance with the law Internet hacking and other relevant criminal activities, and the Chinese military has never been involved in or participated in any activities to steal commercial secrets online,” it added. (Source: Reuters)
19 Mar 15. White House reconsiders supporting Israel at UN. The White House said on Thursday that it was reconsidering the support it has given Israel at the UN even as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to row back his election campaign comments rejecting a Palestinian state. Describing the Israeli leader’s tactics in the final campaign push as “cynical and divisive”, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said that the US had defended Israel at the UN in the past because its government had been committed to a two-state solution.
“The steps that the United States has taken at the United Nations had been predicated on this idea that the two-state solution is the best outcome,” he said. “Now our ally in these talks has said that they are no longer committed to that solution. That means we need to re-evaluate our position in this matter.”
Mr Earnest said that the Israeli leader’s warning to rightwing voters that Arab-Israelis were turning up to the polls in “droves” had been a “cynical election day tactic that was a pretty transparent effort to marginalise Arab Israeli citizens”.
The stark warning from the White House came as Mr Netanyahu attempted on Thursday to backtrack from his promise on Monday that he would not allow for the creation of a Palestinian state if he were re-elected. The comments were the most controversial moment in a heated and at times ugly last few days of the election campaign that resulted in Tuesday’s victory for his rightwing Likud party.
“I don’t want a one-state solution,” Mr Netanyahu said in an interview with NBC television. “I want a sustainable, peaceful two-state solution. But for that, circumstances have to change.”
When asked by NBC whether US President Barack Obama had called to congratulate him on his poll win, Mr Netanyahu replied: “Secretary [of state John] Kerry called me yesterday, and I’m sure I’ll be speaking to President Obama soon. We’ll work together — we have to.” Late on Thursday, the White House said that the two leaders spoke. The US has consistently used its veto on the UN Security Council to protect Israel from resolutions that have been highly critical of its treatment of the Palestinians. However, even before the election, many European governments were becoming in