Archive for the ‘Iran’ Category

Will Wilkinson gets his wish

June 23, 2009

Jonah Goldberg brought this babble to our attention

Will Wilkinson on why he won’t color his Twitter avatar green in solidarity with the opposition:

…Here’s what I do worry about. When people feel pressure to signal, and it’s free, they’ll signal. But sending the signal creates a small emotional investment in the overt message of the signal — solidarity with opponents of the ruling Iranian regime. As every salesman knows, getting someone to make a big, costly commitment is best achieved by getting them to first make a tiny, costless commitment. The tiny, costless commitment of turning Twitter avatars green is thin edge of the persuasive edge for the neocons who would like to sell the public a war in Iran. Since I would rather not be Bill Kristol’s useful idiot, I will conspicuously leave my avatar as is, and continue hoping for the best.

Shorter Will: Hey, I like to pretend that I care about the iranians, but when push comes to shove I’d much rather see them beaten, murdered, and enslaved, than have to reassess all the idiocies I’ve spewed over the last 8 years.

Here’s a clue, Will: When violent thugs want to keep you down, either you have to use violence against them, or you have to get someone else to use it, or at least threaten to use it.

Wishing doesn’t work.  Neither do words.  Little Rock schools didn’t get integrated because the Supreme Court said they had to be, they got integrated because President Eisenhower sent in the Army.

If you want the Iranian people to only have as much freedom as the “Supreme Leader” is willing to give them, then you want them to be slaves.

At least be man enough to stop lying about what you support.

In any event, congratulations: You’re not a useful idiot.

Too bad it’s because you’re not the least bit useful for anyone who cares about freedom.

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No More Nokia Phones for me

June 22, 2009

Every cell phone I’ve owned has been made by Nokia. But the one I have now is the last Nokia product I’ll buy. Here’s why:

Iran’s Web Spying Aided By Western Technology

European Gear Used in Vast Effort to Monitor Communications

By CHRISTOPHER RHOADS in New York and LORETTA CHAO in Beijing

The Iranian regime has developed, with the assistance of European telecommunications companies, one of the world’s most sophisticated mechanisms for controlling and censoring the Internet, allowing it to examine the content of individual online communications on a massive scale.

Interviews with technology experts in Iran and outside the country say Iranian efforts at monitoring Internet information go well beyond blocking access to Web sites or severing Internet connections.

Instead, in confronting the political turmoil that has consumed the country this past week, the Iranian government appears to be engaging in a practice often called deep packet inspection, which enables authorities to not only block communication but to monitor it to gather information about individuals, as well as alter it for disinformation purposes, according to these experts.

The monitoring capability was provided, at least in part, by a joint venture of Siemens AG, the German conglomerate, and Nokia Corp., the Finnish cellphone company, in the second half of 2008, Ben Roome, a spokesman for the joint venture, confirmed.

The “monitoring center,” installed within the government’s telecom monopoly, was part of a larger contract with Iran that included mobile-phone networking technology, Mr. Roome said.

Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas. Good bye, Nokia, terrorist thug enablers.

Iran news: Rafsanjani’s daughter released

June 22, 2009

In case you’re new to my blog, I changed my banner to green to do my (pitiful little) part to support the protesters in Iran. I have been following what’s happening there, I hope hope for the best (an overthrow of the current government, and replacing it with something better).

The following news item makes me feel a bit more hopeful

Iranian media say the daughter of one of Iran’s most powerful figures, former president Hashemi Rafsanjani, and four family members were detained during the protests but later released.

The vast majority of the people in the Middle East are amoral familists.  “My brother and I against my cousin, my cousin and I against everyone else.”  Rafsanjani was out trying to drum up support among the mullahs.  Grabbing his daughter put him in a terrible bind.  the fact that the government had to back down, and let her go, is amazing.

I do not believe they would let her go simply because Rafsanjani agreed to stop working against the government.  No one’s going to trust him that much.

If they really did let her, and the other four, go, it’s IMHO because someone let the “Supreme Leader know that there are some lines he cannot cross.

And that makes it more likely the good guys will win.  Or at least that the worst guys will lose.