Hugh Pickens writes: "The NY Times reports that the Pentagon plans to create a new military command for cyberspace, administration officials say, stepping up preparations by the armed forces to conduct both offensive and defensive computer warfare. Obama is expected to sign a classified order in coming weeks that will create the military cybercommand, The decision to create a cybercommand is a major step beyond the actions taken by the Bush administration, which authorized several computer-based attacks but never resolved the question of how the government would prepare for a new era of warfare fought over digital networks. The main dispute has been over whether the Pentagon or the National Security Agency should take the lead in preparing for and fighting cyberbattles. Under one proposal still being debated, parts of the NSA would be integrated into the military command so they could operate jointly. Officials declined to describe potential offensive operations, but said they now viewed cyberspace as comparable to more traditional battlefields. "We are not comfortable discussing the question of offensive cyberoperations, but we consider cyberspace a war-fighting domain," said Bryan Whitman, a Pentagon spokesman. "We need to be able to operate within that domain just like on any battlefield, which includes protecting our freedom of movement and preserving our capability to perform in that environment.""