back to article Note to despots: You can't kill the internet

The latest reports from the turmoil in Burma say at least one person died and many were wounded today when police again shot at protesters on the streets of Rangoon. Until now, one of the most striking things about the monk-led uprising has been the volume of information that has been escaping about the usually secretive regime …

COMMENTS

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Ian

Good Luck

Good luck to all the protesters and I sincerely hope they prevail.

I'd like think I'd be brave enough to stand up to such brutal

authorities but I hope I'll never find out.

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UN

Isn't this one of the reasons the UN was created for?

It cannot be right that Russia and China have blocked the resolution to do something about this (though the something might only have been to say "Stop doing this"). "Internal issue only" - pah!

I find it amazing that we (UK) can go to war on a dubious reason, but we fail to do anything about these atrocities!

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This could be the final straw

Given the difficulty of preventing realtime reports and despite enormous pressure from China and Russia leading to a weak UN response, I think they may finally manage to chuck the current bunch of corrupt militaristic parasite out, once and for all.

If it goes on long enough, China's only realistic response might very well be to back "regime change" while ensuring such a regime will still be friendly to China.

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Anonymous Coward

The internet...

... finaly shows the world what it meens to have a channel for infomation truly free of regulation by the state and free from political bias. Its not just about P0rn etc.

And as for the people of Burma, Good luck and Gods speed to you. Governments may talk but the rest of the world looks too you in awe and hopes that you are finaly given the justice and freedom you diserve.

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Mat

I guess.

the UN will help Burma in the same way it has helped the people of Zimbabwe..........

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Anonymous Coward

China

For all their claims to be the oldest civilisation, they remain unreconstructed barbarians by western standards. Individually, I'm sure they're as good or bad as Westerners, possibly even nicer, on average, because of the hardships many of them suffer, but the ruling "caste" are as venal and bloodthirsty as any medieval warlord.

Rather than the oldest civilisation, I'd call them the oldest bureaucracy.

The sheer hypocrisy of the Chinese military junta calling on the Burmese military junta to abide by the results of free and fair elections would probably cause the UN to burn down just from the heated cheeks of the Ambassador pontificating so. I can't see any intervention scenario which won't lead to the Chinese waltzing over the border to "restore order" (and their energy supplies).

Hopefully the western embassies can make sure there are lobes of WiFi reaching beyond their physical boundaries and feeding diplomatically-privileged VPN tunnels to the rest of the Internet.

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Apparently the west can still make money though arms exports to Burma.

Lots of money! Hmmmm!

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Anonymous Coward

Money and Power ...

".... new oil reserves found in Burma! US 'Peacekeeping' forces (featuring Chuck Norris) to invade by weeks end ...."

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Silver badge

Why all the sandals?

Did you notice all the other sandals in the background behind the bloody one? There are lots and lots of sandals back there with no people in them? Why?

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We did!

"I find it amazing that we (UK) can go to war on a dubious reason, but we fail to do anything about these atrocities!"

Actually we did - Sierra Leone and Iraq. Saddam Hussein was supposed to have committed far worse atrocities on his own people but it just wasn't reported as graphically as it has with Burma or Zimbabwe. We were quite successful in Sierra Leone and the powers that be thought we could repeat the success in Iraq and I think we did in Basra.

Burma was an British colony (albeit as an annex of colonial India), so we have been there before, as we had in Afghanistan. Strange how history repeats itself. The next thing you know, we'd have an Empire again...

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Uk & Burma

The UK Gummint' are very much in a glass house throwing stones when it comes to Burma.

The UK sent a gunship round there harbour to extort £10,000 gold Doubloons (GO PIRATES) and subsequently invaded and occupied Burma (and it was done beneath the flag of democracy)

Sharp pieces of fruit aside, we held burma until the Japanese kicked us out in WW2 - so I don't think we can chuck to many stones on this issue.

Of course thats all in the past and we are not like that any more, of course we like to see a free and fair government all round the world* so good like to the buddhist Monks, I really hope people power can once again sweep aside a despotic regime.

*except in Europe where being unelected is fine

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Anonymous Coward

The Headline

"You can't kill the internet"

Implied that there is a way for it to be done. True, though, it's more likely to be a person seemingly of no consequence, than a despot whom everyone's keeping an eye on.

"Good luck and Gods speed to you."

Indeed, good luck to everyone in Myanmar. God's speed? I don't think so. If he even exists, then he's a despot, too. Fortunately, Buddhists don't need to rely on an all-powerful being.

Back to the beginning, this denial of despotism might just be what keeps the internet in existence. Yet... to be without existence, to eliminate the craving for information & communication, is better. ;-)

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Worse things could happen

There were some terrible things about the British Empire, but as an American, I have always been impressed by the sheer amount of civilisation that the UK has exported.

A new British Empire is extremely far from the worst thing I can imagine happening.

You might even civilise the French. Miracles are said to be more common than we realise.

And, all levity aside, my best wishes go to the people of Burma, and their popular leaders - the monks who have the moral and physical courage to stand up for freedom. May the despots all be reminded graphically of Guy Fawkes.

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@Why all the sandals?

Its easeir to run away in bare feet than cheap flip flops.

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Anonymous Coward

Guy Fawkes...

@Morely:

What, you mean the same Guy Fawkes who conspired to overthrow a despot and completely failed and his entire organisation was seized and executed? I don't think that's such a good thing to remind them of. Let's hope they may be graphically reminded of Benito Mussolini instead - a much more salutary lesson for them, and one I devoutly hope they all emulate.

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Sam

Regarding Mussolini..

(To the George Formby tune of "leaning on a lamppost"...

I'm hanging from the lamppost on the corner of the street,

Until a certain allied army comes by..

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Doc

Sorry Burma cits...

...you're not likely to get too much help from the west.

No oil.

No weapons of mass destruction.

Major traders with any major powers?

Nice outfits, though.

All the best to you anyway.

Aussie Doc

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Everyone blocks

China and Russia block action against Burma. The USA blocks any action against Israel. Everyone in the security council has friends they protect so that they do not suffer the consequences of their actions. It's a tight little club, and one of the main reasons the UN is a lot less effective than it might be. Might makes right, it seems.

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Prayer Beads Vs. Guns

I wonder which will win. Must be nice to be the town bully and picking on unarmed people?

Also, no one else has said, so I will...

Where is the Paris Hilton Angle?

Have a good weekend (For those of us who are 10 ahead of GMT!!!!!!)

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Anonymous Coward

who wants to really annoy china

Why not go into Burma - which country or group of countries really fancy risking taking on china.

Same with Isreal - who really wants to take on the USA.

Britain might well have exported civilisation, but we also invented concentration camps + many other atrocities.

At the end of the day governments are run by self righteous pricks who only do things when it suits them which is rarely if ever for the good of the people in the countries they invade.

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I'm SO ashamed (yeah, right)

Despite the attempts by the junta in Burma to "firewall" the Internet, reports are still getting out.

One of the religious protesters has been tasked with keeping the Internet servers operational. He is a the chip monk.

(Well, you don't think that Paris Hilton would be up to the job, do you?)

On a serious note, the Buddhist monks in Burma put the Christian clergy in the UK and in the USA to shame!

Martin

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Advantage of democracy

It has often been said that there should be a law that states 'anyone who seeks political office is automatically prevented from attaining it' all politicians are self righteous by definition. All politicians are dictators The advantage of democracy is that they are rotated after a few years.

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Burma?

Are you guys still calling Zimbabwe 'Rhodesia', or Thailand 'Siam'?

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Anonymous Coward

@Morely Dotes

"You might even civilise the French..."

Canada?

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RE: Burma?

It was renamed Myanmar by the military dictatorship, and the UK doesn't recognise the change:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/7013943.stm

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Oil

Actually Burma does have oil - why do you think that India and China are so interested?

To any Burmese reading this, please stay safe.

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Tim

Re: Burma?

Whilst Myanmar may have been the traditional local name, the change of the official name from Burma to Myanmar was forced upon them by the Junta and was widely opposed by opposition groups, so as a Brit, whether we gave them the name or not, I fully support calling it Burma instead of endorsing the Junta by calling it Myanmar.

If once they have overthrown their oppressors they decide democratically to change the name to Myanmar, then we can all adopt it, but to all intents at the moment it's Burma.

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Don't oversimplify Alex...

The UK and other nations still refer to Burma as such for political reasons. The government carried out the official name change and this government isn't recognised by UK/USA, so they don't recognise the name change. Locals tend to refer to Burma as Burma in spoken language and Myanmar is more a literary form.

There's a nice article on the BBC website about it.

You can get off the high horse now...

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Anonymous Coward

Call to arms

Yeah ok, a lot of these guys are risking everything to get information to the outside world ... but what are we doing with the info when we get it?

We are sitting on our sofas watching it on TV, going 'oh heck, that doesn't look good..'

For chrissakes, our governments aren't going to lift a finger to help them - what about us? Surely the ordinary citizen (the millions and millions of us) can do something?

It makes me sick to know that unarmed monks are being shot dead for protesting.

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