Questions About the NYT’s Reporting on Stuxnet

Rehmat Qadir has a detailed post at Mondoweiss which take a closer look at the New York Times’s reporting on Stuxnet. He finds some startling inconsistencies in the Times’s reporting.

He writes:

The New York Times article is deliberately misleading, excluding publicly-available evidence that casts doubts on the facts presented within it. Chiefly it has excluded the likelihood that the Stuxnet operation was a failed or only minimally-successful experiment that did next to nothing in terms of setting back Iran’s nuclear program, as demonstrated by Stuxnet’s inconsequential effect on the production of low-enriched uranium– an effect documented in the graph below from the very report that The New York Times cites as the authoritative record for the timeline it puts forward, but a graph it failed to report to readers.


This graph, showing steady increases in Low Enriched Uranium production at Natanz, Iran, plant, was published in a document that the New York Times relied on for its story. But the Times did not provide this information to its readers.

Furthermore, technical analysis of the actual virus code shows a series of software revisions in 2010, long after the 2009 period of damage the authors assert was effected by Stuxnet– implying much less confidence in the success of the virus on the part of its developers, a conclusion again supported by quantitative data illustrating rising Iranian output of low enriched uranium over the past four years. And this conclusion is borne out by recent analyses of the software that once again the Times failed to mention.

The full post can be read here.

Eli Clifton

Eli Clifton reports on money in politics and US foreign policy. He is a co-founder of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft. Eli previously reported for the American Independent News Network, ThinkProgress, and Inter Press Service.