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  • Scratch the World Wide Web: Iran Has Its Own Plans for the Internet

    For the masses in repressive regimes like Iran, the Internet represents the last bastion of freedom of expression—but not for long.

    Early this year, Iran announced its plan to create a cyber army, 25,000 strong, to strengthen state control of the Internet. But why should the Iranian government waste its time controlling and filtering the Internet when it can create its own? Scratch the World Wide Web—here comes the Iranian Wide Web.

    While Iran was once a leader in Internet access in the Middle East—it was the first Muslim nation in the region to jump online—it has since become no stranger to the suppression of Internet freedom. Recently, for the second time in a row, Freedom House gave Iran’s Internet access a rating of “Not Free,” and Reporters Without Borders listed the country as an “Internet Enemy.” Yet this latest move on the part of Iran takes its notorious state Internet control another step—or rather leap—further.

    Iran’s “national Internet” will follow the path laid out by countries such as Cuba, Myanmar, and even North Korea, all of which have moved to create an intricate web of dual service. In Cuba, for instance, while tourists and government officials can still access the global Internet, citizens are confined to a closed, monitored, limited access network. According to Iranian news agencies, 60 percent of the country will soon be connected to this new internal network, with the whole nation following suit within the next two years.

    In February, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to preserving Internet freedom throughout the world. More recently, the State Department announced that it had allocated all of the $50 million that had been appropriated for its activities to promote Internet freedom throughout the world. Iran’s recent actions, however, should prompt the U.S. government to consider whether these actions are sufficient.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    6 Responses to Scratch the World Wide Web: Iran Has Its Own Plans for the Internet

    1. O_Henry says:

      The US Department of Defense has been reviewing cyber war criteria. It stands to reason that one has military training for conventional wars i.e. "war games."

      Doesn't cyber war also need its version of "war games?" I wonder what would be a good place to start a cyber skirmish or a reasonable objective….. Purely for practice….. no fatalities….. Hummmm…? Could it be possible, sort of plausible deniability…….

      It worked at Natanz!

    2. Lloyd Scallan (New O says:

      "Commitment to preserving internet freedom". What exactly does that mean? I'll tell you what is means; $50 million of our tax dollars, that we don't have, down a rat hole. What will it take for us to recognize Obama and this administration want to do nothing but continue spending us into oblivion. Do we really think any amount of money will stop Iran, and other dictatorships, from denying the people access to free speech? It's the same old scam to divert attention away from Obama agenda. In the mean time, this Obama led FCC is trying to do exactly the same to the people of this nation.

    3. Leon Lundquist, Dura says:

      The cognative dissonance goes Gong! How can Sec. Hillary Clinton even squeek about Internet Freedom when the Administration is actively seeking an Internet Kill Switch? Does she see two persons in the mirror? How do they get away with it? There has never been a more repressive Administration! They truly want Totalitarian Powers! So, really, it is only a matter of time our own status will be 'Not Free!' If Iran pushes Israel too hard and things get really out of control? They will be Nuked! You can laugh about Glenn Beck and his Stand With Israel, but if we abandon Israel? The only option they will have is Nuclear!

    4. George Colgrove, VA says:

      I guess one way to look at these national intranets is that if they are effective in keeping the US out, we may want to implement the same thing for the US federal workforce!

      Competition of ideas. Neocons are freaking out in this country to the point of wanting to start wars over hackary. If Iran, Cuba and others can create a national intranet that is strong enough to keep us or any other hacker out, it is time to learn.

      For civilian use of the internet, Kind-a like it the way it is. What ever the government does will only reduce freedom. I will take care of my own security with solutions provided by the private sector market place.

      Incidently, a Democratic Congressman comes out with a significant need to expose himself on the internet and within a week congress has responded with a whole slew of internet laws and regs – overnight. Why? More government and more government spending. We have had a debt crisis dialog for over two years and where is congress? All I can hear is the crickets chirping.

      This issue shows that congress and the federal workforce can mobalize when it benefits them. The debt crisis is far more dangerous than hackers and where are they in trying to protect us? Right now, they are NOT considering cuts, but rather ways to sneak tax hikes that will only harm our economy even more.

      This is a side show, and these countries can do what they want with their own resources. PLEASE focus OUR attention to OUR problems.

    5. Pingback: Olvídese de la World Wide Web: Irán tiene sus propios planes | Heritage Libertad

    6. Pingback: Morning Bell: The Iranian Threat That Can’t Be Ignored | The Foundry

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