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  1. #1
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    The First WikiLeaks Revolution?

    Tunisians didn't need any more reasons to protest when they took to the streets these past weeks -- food prices were rising, corruption was rampant, and unemployment was staggering. But we might also count Tunisia as the first time that WikiLeaks pushed people over the brink. These protests are also about the country's utter lack of freedom of expression -- including when it comes to WikiLeaks.

    Tunisia's government doesn't exactly get a flattering portrayal in the leaked State Department cables. The country's ruling family is described as "The Family" -- a mafia-esque elite who have their hands in every cookie jar in the entire economy. "President Ben Ali is aging, his regime is sclerotic and there is no clear successor," a June 2009 cable reads. And to this kleptocracy there is no recourse; one June 2008 cable claims: "persistent rumors of corruption, coupled with rising inflation and continued unemployment, have helped to fuel frustration with the GOT [government of Tunisia] and have contributed to recent protests in southwestern Tunisia. With those at the top believed to be the worst offenders, and likely to remain in power, there are no checks in the system."

    Of course, Tunisians didn't need anyone to tell them this. But the details noted in the cables -- for example, the fact that the first lady may have made massive profits off a private school -- stirred things up. Matters got worse, not better (as surely the government hoped), when WikiLeaks was blocked by the authorities and started seeking out dissidents and activists on social networking sites.

    As PayPal and Amazon learned last year, WikiLeaks' supporters don't take kindly to being denied access to the Internet. And the hacking network Anonymous launched an operation, OpTunisia, against government sites "as long as the Tunisian government keep acting the way they do," an Anonymous member told the Financial Times.

    As in the recent so-called "Twitter Revolutions" in Moldova and Iran, there was clearly lots wrong with Tunisia before Julian Assange ever got hold of the diplomatic cables. Rather, WikiLeaks acted as a catalyst: both a trigger and a tool for political outcry. Which is probably the best compliment one could give the whistle-blower site.
    http://wikileaks.foreignpolicy.com/p...nisia_protests

  2. #2
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    So Paypal and Amazon shut down access to the internet to Tuniusian users? Wow.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Patsfan56 View Post
    So Paypal and Amazon shut down access to the internet to Tuniusian users? Wow.
    How would they possibly do that?

    I didn't get the PayPal/Amazon reference at all.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by natepro View Post
    How would they possibly do that?

    I didn't get the PayPal/Amazon reference at all.
    PayPal and Amazon both took steps, at the behest of the US Government, to try to shut down Wikileaks. PayPal stopped allowing donations to be made to Wikileaks via its service, and Amazon rescinded an agreement to rent server space/bandwidth to Wikileaks. Wikileaks supporters in a loose organization called Anonymous struck back at these Amazon and PayPal with denial of service attacks.

    The article is poorly written, but I think they are trying to say that when Tunisian authorities attempted to cut off access to Wikileaks within their country the same activists began to attack Tunisian government web sites.
    I'm going to list ALEC in credits as associate producer of creating horrifying things for us to talk about -John Oliver

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  5. #5
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    Ah, that makes more sense.

    I remember Anonymous (a group I know of mostly for their protests and such against Scientology) said they were going to go after Amazon, then realized how ridiculously hard that is to do and decided not to, but I didn't know it was over WikiLeaks.
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    "Glad the GOP finally came out with an Obamacare alternative. Can't wait to see their alternative to the Iraq War." - @LOLGOP

  6. #6
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    As Lab said, they are really only indirectly connected to the story. Paypal and Amazon refused to send money to Wikileaks and supporters took it upon themselves to take those sites down i believe. The same thing happened to Mastercard and Visa i believe.

    Anyways i hope that more people protest their governments and rise up. If your government wont tell you the truth, or worse anything, then you take them down through reasonable means. In this country it is "more" easy to take your government down, but in other countries that is, unfortunately, a violent ordeal. These types of coups will not be pretty. From the book that GGGGGG-men sent me, if these guys go against the natural order (that "we" want) it will not end well for them.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbroncos78087 View Post
    As Lab said, they are really only indirectly connected to the story. Paypal and Amazon refused to send money to Wikileaks and supporters took it upon themselves to take those sites down i believe. The same thing happened to Mastercard and Visa i believe.

    Anyways i hope that more people protest their governments and rise up. If your government wont tell you the truth, or worse anything, then you take them down through reasonable means. In this country it is "more" easy to take your government down, but in other countries that is, unfortunately, a violent ordeal. These types of coups will not be pretty. From the book that GGGGGG-men sent me, if these guys go against the natural order (that "we" want) it will not end well for them.
    Kinda interesting.....we'll see if it follows the format.

  8. #8
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    Interesting:

    DC Public Affairs Firm Dumped Tunisia Last Week

    A week before the Tunisian government collapsed on Friday, with its longtime dictator fleeing the country in the face of massive popular protests, a Washington, DC public relations firm that had been hired by the government abruptly severed its relationship the North African nation.....

    Read More
    US State Dept Cable:

    Notwithstanding the frustrations of doing business here, we cannot write off Tunisia. We have too much at stake.
    Sounds like the economic hitmen to me.
    Last edited by GGGGG-Men; 01-16-2011 at 04:24 PM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbroncos78087 View Post
    As Lab said, they are really only indirectly connected to the story. Paypal and Amazon refused to send money to Wikileaks and supporters took it upon themselves to take those sites down i believe. The same thing happened to Mastercard and Visa i believe.

    Anyways i hope that more people protest their governments and rise up. If your government wont tell you the truth, or worse anything, then you take them down through reasonable means. In this country it is "more" easy to take your government down, but in other countries that is, unfortunately, a violent ordeal. These types of coups will not be pretty. From the book that GGGGGG-men sent me, if these guys go against the natural order (that "we" want) it will not end well for them.
    well said

  10. #10
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    I wonder what happens when WikiLeaks leaks the personal information of the members of Anonymous.

    = N E W | Y O R K =

  11. #11
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    Considering that 1 in 15 Tunisians have a computer this seems to be exagerrated to say Wiki Leaks caused it

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrice9 View Post
    Considering that 1 in 15 Tunisians have a computer this seems to be exagerrated to say Wiki Leaks caused it
    It could be unreasonable, but roughly 1 in 10 people in Iran had internet access and Twitter helped start a riot and flame it over there. I dont think that this is an unreasonable connection because of that.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbroncos78087 View Post
    As Lab said, they are really only indirectly connected to the story. Paypal and Amazon refused to send money to Wikileaks and supporters took it upon themselves to take those sites down i believe. The same thing happened to Mastercard and Visa i believe.

    Anyways i hope that more people protest their governments and rise up. If your government wont tell you the truth, or worse anything, then you take them down through reasonable means. In this country it is "more" easy to take your government down, but in other countries that is, unfortunately, a violent ordeal. These types of coups will not be pretty. From the book that GGGGGG-men sent me, if these guys go against the natural order (that "we" want) it will not end well for them.
    I don't see you out on the streets protesting

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by carson005 View Post
    I don't see you out on the streets protesting
    I am mostly referring to other countries (non-Democracies).

    But as far as what i was referring to in the book, if you read it you will see how useless protests and stuff like that are.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbroncos78087 View Post
    It could be unreasonable, but roughly 1 in 10 people in Iran had internet access and Twitter helped start a riot and flame it over there. I dont think that this is an unreasonable connection because of that.
    The falsified elections and the estimated 30% who were actually willing to be polled against the Clerical regime might have to do with it too.

    Not being a dick here , I just think social media gets way too much credit for what people and ideas and other factors actually cause. Yes Facebook and Twitter helped but for large parts of time it was censored there and many people in Iran didnt use Twitter (didnt have Internet or Computers or didnt use Twitter etc)

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