Monday, December 04, 2006

Iran is blocking the big web sites 

According to The Guardian, Iran has rolled out a comprehensive new campaign to block web sites that violate the sensibilities or political interests of its ruling mullahs, including, inexplicably, The New York Times.

Sorry. Cheap shot.

I have two questions for our more learned Iran-watchers out there. First, is this a sign that the regime is weak, or that it is strong? Conversely, will reformers despair from this, take to the streets, or circumvent the blocks?

Second, did Iran develop the blocking software, or did some other police state sell it to them? Did the Chinese help them build a Great Firewall of Persia?


By Anonymous Anonymous, at Mon Dec 04, 12:35:00 PM:

Weak or strong does not matter. I would suggest the Iranian populace is in the same state as Iraq's was prior to Saddam's removal.

They didn't like where they were but there didn't appear to be any real move to do anything about it.  

By Blogger demosophist, at Mon Dec 04, 05:43:00 PM:

1. Weakness
2. Circumvent
3. Either China or Microsoft (actually probably Microsoft through China)  

By Blogger M. Simon, at Mon Dec 04, 07:27:00 PM:

Circumvent using services like Slap the block.


In the end their struggle is hopeless.  

By Blogger William, at Mon Dec 04, 08:39:00 PM:

Reformers won't be happy, but this will be nothing pivotal. Unless they get ridiculously sadistic, popular ire will not be raised. An uprising beyond the reformers and students is impossible while the price of oil, and with it Iranian subsidies, remains high.  

By Blogger Dawnfire82, at Mon Dec 04, 08:48:00 PM:

China pursues a similar policy (which our good blogger TH has encountered and tested) and I don't think that anyone would accuse them of political weakness. Other authoritarian countries like the Arab states do as well, without implying any particular weakness.

I think most reformers in Iran are hiding out right now.

Not a programmer and I'm not in Iran, I have no idea. There's nothing that says that they can't develop it themselves, however.  

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