Islam vs. the Free World: The Battle on the InternetAs I have noted before here, a significant part of the battle of Islam vs. the Free World takes place on the Internet, which this blog itself is a tiny part of. This goes for "Islamophobic" sites such as Jihad Watch and Faith Freedom International, but also for Islamic websites. Some sites by Islamic militants are being shut down by people such as Aaron behind the Internet Haganah, but there are those who would like to keep them online for surveillance:
America Defends Al Qaeda Websites
American intelligence agencies are trying to keep al Qaeda on the Internet. Many patriotic (or just anti-terrorist or anti-Islamic) hackers constantly seek out pro-al-Qaeda websites, and try to shut them down. American intelligence agencies attempt, quietly, to minimize and mitigate these attacks, in order to keep these sites up. So what’s going on here? The American government is operating, behind the scenes, to keep al Qaeda websites online so that American spies can monitor who visits these sites, and what they do there. Al Qaeda knows this, and is trying to bring more of its web activity into the inter net underground, a shadowy zone normally inhabited by criminals and the hackers who keep us all supplied with spam and PC damaging worms and viruses. That area is harder to keep under surveillance, or even easily find.
The advent of the Internet has triggered an explosion of activity:
Leading Egypt Cleric Wants Fewer Frivolous Edicts
The chief Muslim cleric in Egypt wants tighter controls on who may issue religious edicts, or fatwas. Egypt's Grand Mufti says more fatwas have been issued in the past 10 years than in the previous 1400 years. Modern technology has made it easier than ever to issue or receive a fatwa, one of the religious edicts that guide Muslims' interpretations of Islamic law. Someone with a specific question about what Islam allows can get a personalized fatwa on the matter over the Internet.
This is also making not just Islamic nations, but non-democratic countries and groups everywhere rather nervous. Notice that even China, famous for its censorship, is pushing for more UN control. Perhaps the Great Firewall of China isn't as watertight as some want us to believe?
Why the UN Wants to Control the Internet
The United Nations (UN) is campaigning to take over the one aspect of the Internet that can be controlled centrally, the DNS (Domain Name Server) system. This was one of the key ideas that make the Internet work. DNS is a system of server computers that contain the list of web site names, and the twelve digit long IDs that computers actually use to find sites on the net. Since DNS was invented in the United States, the organization ICANN, that supervises the assignment of web site names, is in the U.S. (as an organization independent of any government and staffed by an international crew.) In reality, governments that would like to control media tightly within their own borders, are the ones that would like another tool to accomplish that, and UN control of DNS would do that. Major members, or groups of smaller members, of the UN, can exercise considerable control over UN organizations. For example, if DNS were controlled by the UN, China could insure that any site names China did not approve of, never appeared. Otherwise, the Internet is nearly impossible to control.