by Steve Watson
Global Research, April 18,
Researchers funded by the federal
government want to shut down the internet and start over, citing the
fact that at the moment there are loopholes in the system whereby
users cannot be tracked and traced all the time.
Time magazine has reported that several foundations and
universities including Rutgers, Stanford, Princeton, Carnegie Mellon
and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are pursuing
individual projects, along with the Defense Department, in order to
wipe out the current internet and replace it with a new network
which will satisfy big business and government:
One challenge in any reconstruction,
though, will be balancing the interests of various
constituencies. The first time around, researchers were able to
toil away in their labs quietly. Industry is playing a bigger
role this time, and law enforcement is bound to make its needs
for wiretapping known.
There's no evidence they are
meddling yet, but once any research looks promising, "a number
of people (will) want to be in the drawing room," said
Jonathan Zittrain, a law professor affiliated with Oxford
and Harvard universities. "They'll be wearing coats and ties and
spilling out of the venue."
The projects echo moves we have
previously reported on to clamp down on internet neutrality and even
to designate a new form of the internet known as Internet 2.
This would be a faster, more streamlined elite equivalent of the
internet available to users who were willing to pay more for a much
improved service. Providers may only allow streaming audio and video
on your websites if you were eligible for Internet 2.
Of course, Internet 2 would be greatly regulated and only
"appropriate content" would be accepted by an FCC or government
bureau. Everything else would be relegated to the "slow lane"
internet, the junkyard as it were. Our techie rulers are all too
keen to make us believe that the internet as we know it is ";already
Google is just one of the major companies preparing for Internet 2
by setting up hundreds of "server farms" through which eventually
all our personal data - emails, documents, photographs, music,
movies - will pass and reside. However, experts state that the
"clean slate" projects currently being undertaken go even further
beyond projects like Internet 2 and National LambdaRail,
both of which focus primarily on next-generation needs for speed.
In tandem with broad data retention legislation currently being
introduced worldwide, such "clean slate" projects may represent a
considerable threat to the freedom of the internet as we know it. EU
directives and US proposals for data retention may mean that
any normal website or blog would have to fall into line with such
new rules and suddenly total web regulation would become a
In recent months, a chorus of propaganda intended to demonize the
Internet and further lead it down a path of strict control has
spewed forth from numerous establishment organs:
In a display of bi-partisanship,
there have recently been calls for all out mandatory ISP
snooping on all US citizens by both Democrats and Republicans
Republican Senator John McCain
recently tabled a proposal to introduce legislation that would
fine blogs up to $300,000 for offensive statements, photos and
videos posted by visitors on comment boards. It is well known
that McCain has a distaste for his blogosphere critics, causing
a definite conflict of interest where any proposal to restrict
blogs on his part is concerned.
During an appearance with his wife
Barbara on Fox News last November, George Bush senior
slammed Internet bloggers for creating an "adversarial and ugly
The White House's own recently
de-classified strategy for "winning the war on terror" targets
Internet conspiracy theories as a recruiting ground for
terrorists and threatens to "diminish" their influence.
The Pentagon recently announced its
effort to infiltrate the Internet and propagandize for the war
In a speech last October,
Homeland Security director Michael Chertoff
identified the web as a "terror training camp," through which
"disaffected people living in the United States" are developing
"radical ideologies and potentially violent skills." His
solution is "intelligence fusion centers," staffed by Homeland
Security personnel which will go into operation next year.
The U.S. Government wants to force
bloggers and online grassroots activists to register and
regularly report their activities to Congress. Criminal charges
including a possible jail term of up to one year could be the
punishment for non-compliance.
A landmark legal case on behalf of
the Recording Industry Association of America and other
global trade organizations seeks to criminalize all Internet
file sharing of any kind as copyright infringement, effectively
shutting down the world wide web - and their argument is
supported by the U.S. government.
A landmark legal ruling in Sydney
goes further than ever before in setting the trap door for the
destruction of the Internet as we know it and the end of
alternative news websites and blogs by creating the precedent
that simply linking to other websites is breach of copyright and
The European Union, led by former
Stalinist and potential future British Prime Minister John
Reid, has also vowed to shut down "terrorists" who use the
Internet to spread propaganda.
The EU data retention bill, passed
last year after much controversy and with implementation tabled
for late 2007, obliges telephone operators and internet service
providers to store information on who called who and who emailed
who for at least six months. Under this law, investigators in
any EU country, and most bizarrely even in the US, can access EU
citizens' data on phone calls, sms', emails and instant
The EU also recently proposed
legislation that would prevent users from uploading any form of
video without a license.
The US government is also funding
research into social networking sites and how to gather and
store personal data published on them, according to the New
"At the same time, US lawmakers
are attempting to force the social networking sites
themselves to control the amount and kind of information
that people, particularly children, can put on the sites."
We are being led to believe that a vast
army of maniac pedophiles or terrorists are on the
loose and we must do away with all forms of privacy in order to stop
them. This is akin to saying that blanket cctv prevents crime.
As if to say,
"if we film everyone all the time,
even innocent people, then no one will ever commit any crimes."
Increasingly we are seeing this in every
aspect of our lives. Recording, tracking and retaining our data in
the name of keeping us all safe. Everyone is now treated as
guilty until proven innocent.
Make no mistake, the internet, one of the greatest outposts of
free speech ever created is under constant attack by powerful
people who cannot operate within a society where information flows
freely and unhindered. Both American and European moves mimic
stories we hear every week out of State Controlled Communist
China, where the internet is strictly regulated and virtually
exists as its own entity away from the rest of the web.
The Internet is freedom's best friend and the bane of control
freaks. Its eradication is one of the short term goals of those that
seek to centralize power and subjugate their populations under a
surveillance panopticon prison, whether that be in Communist China,
Neoconservative America or the Neofascist EU.