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The PJ Tatler

by
Seton Motley

Bio

February 23, 2012 - 8:53 am

With elections pending, the Mullahs that lord over Iran aren’t taking any chances.

…Iran has begun blocking Internet services, Web security experts say, adding to concerns that government leaders hope to shut off Iranians from the rest of the online world…

…The action is blocking email and some Web access for as many as 30 million Iranians who use SSL-protected sites, reported CBR Systems & Network Security, a European technology organization.

Iran, which will hold parliamentary elections on March 2, has referred to Google and other search engines as “spying tools,” and it has throttled access to foreign web servers previously at politically sensitive times. The free-expression activist group Reporters Without Borders has branded Iran as an “enemy of the Internet.”

How many independent companies – the alleged enemy Net Neutrality allegedly seeks to allay – has Reporters Without Borders branded as an “enemy of the Internet?”  That would be zero.  Reporters Without Borders lists twelve entities – all governments.

Iran’s Communications and Technology Minister Reza Taghipour said Monday that a firewalled “national Internet,” which Tehran has been promising since as early as 2006, would be launched in the spring. Internet security analysts and open-Internet activists say the “national Internet” would act as a closed intranet sealing Iranians off from large chunks of the web. Similar systems are known to be in use in China and North Korea.

Excellent.

President Barack Obama, if you’ll recall, said that all this wondrous information at our disposal – for now – is:

“Putting pressure on our country and our democracy.”

Iran – and China, and Syria, and North Korea, and… – is what happens when government has unlimited, unfettered control of the Internet.  Control the Obama Administration recently illegally commandeered with its Network Neutrality power grab.

What we’re seeing in Iran is an almost inexorable result of government Internet control - government neutralizes the ‘Net.  To shut down any speech the government doesn’t deem fit.

Which is why the Obama Administration’s horrendous – and horrendously illegal – Net Neutrality power grab must be overturned.  We should be condemning the government likes of the Iranian Mullahs for their Internet domination – not emulating them.

Seton Motley is a consultant and the founder and president of Less Government.

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