Internet Under SiegeSubmitted by Liberty_Belle on Thu, 11/19/2009 - 10:12
It is ironic that President Barack Obama would travel to China and speak against government control over the internet. If the American Department of Homeland Security has its way new cybersecurity laws will enable Obama’s administration to take control of the internet in the event of a national crisis. How that national crisis might be defined would be up to the White House but there have been some precedents that suggest that the response would hardly be respectful of the Bill of Rights.
Many countries already monitor and censor the internet on a regular basis, forbidding access to numerous sites that they consider to be subversive. During recent unrest, the governments of both Iran and China effectively shut down the internet by taking control of or blocking servers. Combined with switching off of cell phone transmitters, the steps proved effective in isolating dissidents. Could it happen here? Undoubtedly. Once the laws are in place a terrorist incident or something that could be plausibly described in those terms would be all that is needed to have government officials issue the order to bring the internet to a halt.