When questioned last year about whether the U.S. has gone far enough in deterring cyber aggression from adversaries, Stewart told the Senate Armed Services Committee, “I think most potential adversaries understand that we have a capability, whether or not we are ready to use that, because that’s the essence of deterrence that an adversary actually feels that we’ll use the capability that we have – I’m not sure we’re there yet and that goes beyond our ability to understand and to counter its military capabilities.”
“I think there’s another dimension of convincing from a policy standpoint that we’re willing to use that capability,” said Stewart.
Cyber Command (CYBERCOM) is set to split from the National Security Agency (NSA) and reached full operational capability in 2010. At Congress’ direction, CYBERCOM will become a full unified combatant command outside of Strategic Command where it exists now.
Speaking of his role as head of the military’s defense intelligence agency, the DIA, Stewart told Cipher Brief: “My greatest measure of success is that I help a combatant commander see an event early enough so that he can set his forces and counter that event. If I can help mitigate surprise, if I can help when they go into a conflict, and I can provide that additional depth of analysis that helps them to be successful and win the fight that they are in, and if in another combatant command I can help them deter conflict because of the depth of analysis, then to me that’s victory…”
“Let’s focus on understanding the adversary’s military capabilities so that we can prevent war,” he added. “And if we can’t prevent war, let’s beat the stuffings out of anyone who comes against us.”
Lieutenant General Stewart received his baccalaureate degree from Western Illinois University, Macomb, IL, where he majored in history. He also earned master’s degrees in national security and strategic studies from the Naval War College, Newport, R.I. and in national resource strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, National Defense University, Washington, D.C.