First they came for Julian Assange,
and we didn’t speak out because he was a bit strange.
Then they came for computer science students,
and we didn’t speak out because we were too stupid to understand the implications.
Then they came for LulzSec…
On Tuesday the FBI charged five young men on suspicion of being involved with the ‘LulzSec‘ cyber attacks. Grounds for their initial arrests were based largely on the testimony of New Yorker, Hector Xavier Monsegur, aka Sabu. There’s some division among hackers at the moment as to whether Sabu is a turncoat FBI super-grass, or whether he actually took one for the team. Less ambiguous is the fact that the FBI were aware of – and therefore implicit in – a number of actions over a nine month period, including the Stratfor hack which seems to have been used specifically to entrap people.
Buried amongst the current hyperbole is the fact that people involved with groups like LulzSec, Wikileaks and/or Anonymous aren’t criminals* or even ‘cyber-terrorists’, they’re actually protesters and freedom fighters who are actively creating a new – and rather effective – form of civil disobedience.
Their protests (and indeed Low Orbit Ion Cannons) are predominantly aimed at government censorship and intrusive monitoring of the internet; but they have also included actions against dictatorships, institutionalised racism and police corruption. If these had been traditional a-to-b-marches that the left are so fond of (or even full on riots) they would not have resulted in international arrest warrants and threats of 100+ year prison terms, nor would they have proved anywhere near as effective in highlighting the fact that the leaders and government institutions of the so-called ‘Land of the Free’ will stop at nothing to to crush those who dare to exercise, promote and defend real freedoms.
Quite rightly the case of Richard O’Dwyer, the Sheffield Hallam University student facing extradition and a five year prison term simply for building a website which included links to film download sites (information readily available on Google), has outraged people and inspired a 20,000+ signature petition. Ryan Ackroyd (aka Kayla/lol/lolsoon), who lives a few miles north of Sheffield in the Doncaster town of Mexborough, also faces extradition and an even lengthier sentence, but because he is allegedly linked to LulzSec we’ve yet to see the same level of support for this young man.
Anyone who claims to cherish individual freedoms and social justice should show their support for all those who are currently being harangued by the state just so the authorities can set an example to anyone else who might be tempted to remind people of their liberties.
We’ll give the last (wise) word to Hack News:
[M]y heart goes out to these brave men and their families as they work their way through the corrupt and ill focused justice system for leading the only movement existing in our mis-shapened world that works to do one thing: tell the truth.
One must ask them self why lulzsec,anonymous, wikileaks, etc. Exist? What has driven millions of young people behind the mask and into cyber space to place self, family and home on the front line of attack by the FBI and other infamous law enforcement agencies? The answer is quite clear. The truth. If the FBI, government, multi-billion dollar corporations, banks and other financial institutions were telling us the truth, well, who would need them?
I was thinking of nelson mandela this morning. Thinking of his 20 years in prison. The government taking away from him every right of every human being on earth for doing one thing: telling the truth. Exposing and speaking out against injustice and tryanny. I was also thinking about the thousands of people who are being forced to foreclose on their homes, the people who have no jobs, the young people who have no future because we have allowed the 1% to bath in our revenues and take our possessions and our pride.
DIZZZCLAIMER: This blog and it’s artworks are for information and entertainment purposes only. We’ll leave the incitement to the professionals… those shitheads at the FBI!
*There have been attacks on credit card companies, but monies have only ever been transfered to charities or used to pay for servers – so if they’re criminals so was Robin Hood!