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China Strangles Tor Ahead of National Day

timothy posted about 5 years ago | from the not-so-much-into-liberty-y'see dept.

Censorship 297

TechReviewAl writes "Technology Review reports that the Chinese government has for the first time targeted the Tor anonymity network. In the run-up to China's National Day celebrations, the government started targeting the sites used to distribute Tor addresses and the number of users inside China dropped from tens of thousands to near zero. The move is part of a broader trend that involves governments launching censorship crackdowns around key dates. The good news is that many Tor users quickly found a way around the attack, distributing 'bridge' addresses via IM and Twitter."

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Surprising (4, Interesting)

sopssa (1498795) | about 5 years ago | (#29761315)

It's actually quite interesting what Chinese goverment is capable of on technical terms. Most of the goverments are quite clueless when it comes to computer and internet stuff, but Chinese seem to be on the track always.

Re:Surprising (1)

Philip K Dickhead (906971) | about 5 years ago | (#29761339)

Why not?

These days, at least half the equipment is manufactured in Chinese factories, to begin with.

Re:Surprising (1)

Jurily (900488) | about 5 years ago | (#29761505)

So what? There's always only clerks in the inner workings of the government. Maybe censorship == clue.

(Un)Surprising (-1, Troll)

dark_requiem (806308) | about 5 years ago | (#29761357)

It's not unusual for governments to devote their greatest abilities to the worst ends (see: Hiroshima, Japan).

Re:(Un)Surprising (4, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29761469)

If Japan's citizens did not want to be nuked, then they should have stopped their government from killing millions of Chinese, Filipinos, and other Asian neighbors. They started the killing; then they reaped what they had sowed.

Do I feel sorry they Japanese had to die? Yes. Do I think there was any other choice? No. When someone points a gun at you, you don't hold up a target to help them aim better. You fire back.

Re:(Un)Surprising (-1, Troll)

sopssa (1498795) | about 5 years ago | (#29761529)

Japanese fighted with military against military. Only cowards kills civilians (and on hiroshima case, hundreds of thousands of civilians)

Re:(Un)Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761565)

I'm not sure that the Chinese would agree with that statement.

Re:(Un)Surprising (0, Troll)

sopssa (1498795) | about 5 years ago | (#29762155)

That is a separate war. USA never went to fight with Japan because they fighted (arguably with abusive methods) with other asian countries.

They went to fight because Japan did Pearl Harbour.

Modded as troll? Please, it's all true.

Re:(Un)Surprising (0, Flamebait)

Publikwerks (885730) | about 5 years ago | (#29761579)

English grammar obviously was a casualty as well

Re:(Un)Surprising (4, Informative)

supervillainsf (820395) | about 5 years ago | (#29761621)

see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanking_Massacre [wikipedia.org] for evidence to invalidate your claim.

Re:(Un)Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761749)

1937? Separate, historic issue.

Nuclear weapons came a lot later.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about 5 years ago | (#29761805)

Beginning of the war, end of the war. Same war. The Chinese were still fighting the Japanese as our allies as part of the same, ongoing war, right up until the bomb forced the Japanese surrender.

Re:(Un)Surprising (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761935)

So... it's cool to hold Hiroshima (a 20th century massacre of civilians) against the US, but mention Nanking (a 20th century massacre against civilians) and suddenly we're in "no that was a loooooong time ago!!1!" territory, solely because it's Japan?

Re:(Un)Surprising (3, Informative)

supervillainsf (820395) | about 5 years ago | (#29761943)

Um, 8 years is not "a lot" later.

Furthermore, you should probably do a little research on:
a) Japans war with China
b) Japans request that we stop providing aid to China
c) why the U.S. placed an embargo on Japan
d) how that ties in to the bombing or Pearl Harbor.

Add a bit of general WWII history and then we can have an intelligent conversation about this topic

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29762313)

>>>1937? Separate, historic issue. Nuclear weapons came a lot later.

According to the famous documentary "Why We Fight", the Japanese branch of World War 2 started in 1931. So the invasion of China, Rape of Nanking, and final surrender of Japan were all part of that overall fight.

Re:(Un)Surprising (4, Informative)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about 5 years ago | (#29761693)

Japanese fighted with military against military.

The dead of Nanking would like to courteously disagree with that assertion.

Re:(Un)Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761745)

Who in the hell modded this idiot up??? Maybe Pearl Harbor was a military move, but the Japanese had a pretty merciless and aggressive strategy of not just killing civilians, but using them as freaking disposable toys. I'm posting AC, but sopssa you'll see me as the new addition to your Foe list.

Re:(Un)Surprising (-1, Troll)

sopssa (1498795) | about 5 years ago | (#29761867)

Even if so, it doesn't justify killing hundreds of thousands of civilians by the other party. And even more so because it was an unneeded move, Russians we're already owning Japanese with their land attacks. But Americans had to show off too (as Cold War was already kind of starting), so they launched those nukes.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

Shakrai (717556) | about 5 years ago | (#29761915)

Russians we're already owning Japanese with their land attacks

Given Russian actions in Eastern Europe one could argue that it was better to absorb two nuclear bombs and wind up occupied by the United States than it would have been to be sliced in half with a large portion of your population at the mercy of Stalin and his army of rapists [dailymail.co.uk] .

But Americans had to show off too (as Cold War was already kind of starting), so they launched those nukes.

It seems to me that you should produce some evidence to substantiate such an outlandish claim.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

Haxzaw (1502841) | about 5 years ago | (#29762331)

Remember this all took place back when war wasn't so sanitary. We should be doing the same sort of thing in our current war. Obviously the current operations aren't working so well. I don't think we should have been in Iraq in the first place, but if you're going to start a war, you should be able to finish it with a win. Remember the old saying, "All's fair in love and war"? You do what it takes to win, whatever it takes, and you do it quickly.

Re:(Un)Surprising (4, Insightful)

corbettw (214229) | about 5 years ago | (#29761775)

Even if it's true that the Japanese only fought against other countries' militaries and avoided civilian deaths (it's not), it's irrelevant. When you go to war, you go to war completely. Which means you kill every man, woman, and child in your enemy's country.

Don't want to do that? Don't go to war.

Besides, we killed more Japanese civilians with conventional weapons in any one air raid than we did with Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined. It wasn't the number of deaths that got the Emperor to take notice, it was the fact that we did it with just one bomb each time. The alternative was to invade the Japanese home islands, which, by conservative estimates, would've meant hundreds of thousands of dead Americans and millions of dead Japanese. Truman made the right call in dropping the bombs.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

sopssa (1498795) | about 5 years ago | (#29761921)

Even if it's true that the Japanese only fought against other countries' militaries and avoided civilian deaths (it's not), it's irrelevant. When you go to war, you go to war completely. Which means you kill every man, woman, and child in your enemy's country.

And people with mindset like that disgust me. But don't get me wrong, killing other people does too. But you're *not* going to shoot armless, defenseless people and even more so woman and children. Even if they belong to a country of your political enemy.

Another completely retarted fight and killing of people is the fight of Jerusalem and Israel stuff. They're killing thousands of people just to fight over some goddamn land.

I bet lots of people don't care because it doesn't really concern them and it's just some random people somewhere. I do think like that too, but I still understand its fucking retarted.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

sexconker (1179573) | about 5 years ago | (#29762195)

And people with a mindset like yours disgust me.

Don't get me wrong, killing people does too. But you're a moron if you think the death of a man is of any less significance than the death of a woman or a child.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

mathfeel (937008) | about 5 years ago | (#29762027)

The idea of total war fare like that was not the norm in conflicts even 200 years ago. Perhaps some historian here can point out (I think it was the French revolution) when it became norm to mobilize all civilian in war making effect and therefore "justify" the opposite side to crush totally the infrastructure of the enemy.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

Cytotoxic (245301) | about 5 years ago | (#29762367)

Actually, I think even a cursory look at history would tell a different story. Probably because nation-states are a more recent development you have a larger definition of "total war", but in the era before the nation-state war was generally winner take all. There is a reason we have a definition for the word "sack" that includes the plundering, looting and destruction of a city. Take a quick google of "Carthage" for a better understanding of what the norm in conflicts was prior to the current era. The Romans leveled the city to the ground, took 50,000 survivors into slavery and generally raped pillaged and plundered their way through the etire city/state. They even took the extraordinary step of sewing salt into the fields so nothing would grow there. This is over 2,000 years ago - so no, I don't think you can point to the French revolution as a sea change in the style of warfare. In fact, as you go back farther in time and get to smaller and smaller civil aggregations you would see a greater percentage of the populace involved in armed conflict, and a greater likelihood that they would be involved in armed conflict in their lifetimes. I think the distiction between military and civilian populations is a more recent development.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

gnieboer (1272482) | about 5 years ago | (#29762297)

When you go to war, you go to war completely. Which means you kill every man, woman, and child in your enemy's country

Um, no. That would be called genocide.

See Law of Armed Conflict (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_Armed_Conflict) This is actually an aggregate term used to describe legal obligations of many countries who have signed onto a number of treaties.

Noncombatants cannot be 'indiscriminately' targeted. You can bomb a factory that produces ammunition, but can't just bomb the city to kill everyone in it.

It's not simple, as technology has changed the application of 'indiscrimate'. WW II bombing targeted industrial areas, and because technology was what it was, killed lots more people. It was as good as could be done (this can be debated, but that's not my point).
NOW, with GPS smart bombs, a bunch of B-52's carpet bombing Baghdad WWII style would be considered a LOAC violation because it can now be done much more discriminately.

In fact, factories etc are now often targeted at night so fewer civilian casualties occur.

From about.com's summary: "Noncombatants may not be made the object of direct attack. They may, however, suffer injury or death incident to a direct attack on a military objective without such an attack violating the LOAC, if such attack is on a lawful target by lawful means"

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | about 5 years ago | (#29762423)

In fact, factories etc are now often targeted at night so fewer civilian casualties occur.

I think you'll find it has a lot more to do with anti-aircraft/missile batteries being less effective at night (harder to see incoming aircraft or munitions) than there being less people around.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | about 5 years ago | (#29762333)

When you go to war, you go to war completely. Which means you kill every man, woman, and child in your enemy's country.

Ah, I see you subscribe to the theory that war is a state of affairs completely separated from regular politics. It isn't. It's merely the pursuit of political goals with other means.

Here's what killing "every man, woman, and child in your enemy's country" nets you: eternal war, with one person left standing. You want to know why? Because for one, it is impossible to kill every man, woman and child in your enemy's country. More capable people than you have tried and failed. Furthermore, a country is not an isolated entity. It is comprised of people who have connections to many other countries. Those connections will result in war being declared with other countries. Even if you have two completely polarized sides (which wasn't even the case in WW2), and one side manages to completely wipe out the other (which it won't), you're still left with the problem that today's allies can become tomorrow's enemies. Remember how chummy we used to be with Russia and Iraq? And suddenly, the circle starts from scratch.

War is the means by which people attempt to achieve political goals that they couldn't through the regular political process. As a result, war has to have a clear political goal, or it won't work. Furthermore, it has to have an end-state where the old enemy isn't an enemy anymore - and as I pointed out earlier, just killing all the bad guys won't work.

More people should first read Clausewitz, then Powell. First to understand what the point of a war is, and then how you're supposed to fight it.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29762409)

>>>It wasn't the number of deaths that got the Emperor to take notice, it was the fact that we did it with just one bomb each time.

That's not the end of the story. After the Emperor recorded his formal surrender, to be broadcast over radio to the Japanese people, the Army tried to kill their own leader. If the Japanese are willing to kill their own God-emperor, what would they be willing to do to keep the Americans from landing? They would fight to the last man - it would make our current war in Afghanistan look easy.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

WNight (23683) | about 5 years ago | (#29761785)

Idiot. Civilians are the financial branch of the armed forces. If you want to avoid dying in place of your soldiers perhaps you should control them...

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

orange47 (1519059) | about 5 years ago | (#29762355)

nope, armed forces exist for civilians, not the other way round

Re:(Un)Surprising (2, Interesting)

Unoriginal_Nickname (1248894) | about 5 years ago | (#29762265)

Yup. Cowards kill civilians. Stupid, savage cowards.

They also ran Unit 731, conducted horrible experiments and vivisections on civilians and prisoners of war, butchered their own schoolchildren out of fears the invading enemy would be as brutal as they are, cannibalized Australians and live in a culture of institutionalized racism to this very day.

Man, historical revisionism is AWESOME! *beats off to 2chan instead of going outside*

Re:(Un)Surprising (1, Interesting)

dark_requiem (806308) | about 5 years ago | (#29761665)

So if you point a gun at me, I can hunt down and disintegrate your entire family tree? Is that the policy you're advocating here? Take that to it's logical extreme: if a citizen of a foreign country kills someone in America, we have the right to nuke that person's homeland, because they started the killing.

It's a matter of intent, participation, and scale. It's ludicrous to assume that everyone in Japan supported the alliance with the Germans or even the war in general, so one can safely assume that not only were many/most of those killed civilians who had not been involved in the war at all, but also that many of them may well have been opposed to the actions of their government, but powerless to stop them (sound like any country you can think of these days?). And don't forget we are talking about an action undertaken with full knowledge of the fact that it would kill hundreds of thousands of helpless civilians, at a time when Japan's war machine was already decimated, and the allied forces were merely trying to force an official surrender so they could occupy a country which posed no further military threat.

Re:(Un)Surprising (3, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | about 5 years ago | (#29761813)

So if you point a gun at me, I can hunt down and disintegrate your entire family tree?

That's what total war is. Every resource of the nation-state is poured into the war effort. Every resource of the nation-state becomes a valid target.

Take that to it's logical extreme: if a citizen of a foreign country kills someone in America, we have the right to nuke that person's homeland, because they started the killing.

That's not the "logical conclusion". That's a straw man that you set up.

It's a matter of intent, participation, and scale. It's ludicrous to assume that everyone in Japan supported the alliance with the Germans or even the war in general

Why is that relevant?

And don't forget we are talking about an action undertaken with full knowledge of the fact that it would kill hundreds of thousands of helpless civilians

You mean after we gave them months of warnings that they should evacuate their cities?

at a time when Japan's war machine was already decimated, and the allied forces were merely trying to force an official surrender so they could occupy a country which posed no further military threat.

No further military threat? Ask the 12,500 dead Allied soldiers on Okinawa if the Japanese still posed a military threat. Ask the hundreds of thousands that were expected to die during Operation Downfall if they still posed a military threat. Then consider the alternative to invasion (continuing the economic blockade) and ask yourself how many millions of Japanese civilians would have starved to death.

Re:(Un)Surprising (4, Insightful)

nomadic (141991) | about 5 years ago | (#29761999)

Every resource of the nation-state becomes a valid target.

That's ridiculous; go read the Geneva Convention.

Re:(Un)Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29762233)

That's ridiculous; go read the Geneva Convention.

You do realize that the Geneva Conventions weren't signed by Japan until 1953, right? I'm just sayin'.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

WNight (23683) | about 5 years ago | (#29761847)

powerless to stop them (sound like any country you can think of these days?)

Nope. Not at all.

You mean, powerless to stop it without any risk to themselves, without taking time out of their day, without having to learn about the issues involved.

So yeah, if saying "I didn't want this" while paying your taxes is the best you can do, maybe you should suck nuke... If you want to avoid it, control your military - use a gun locally to avoid sending a soldier overseas needlessly.

Re:(Un)Surprising (2, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29761871)

>>>So if you point a gun at me, I can hunt down and disintegrate your entire family tree?

If my family is building guns/bullets that I am using to kill-off your wife, your daughter, your parents, and so on...... then yes I think you have every right to stop them. If you can't find me, then you kill my suppliers so I don't have anything to fire.

Re:(Un)Surprising (2, Insightful)

gnieboer (1272482) | about 5 years ago | (#29762421)

"stop them" != "hunt down and disintegrate"

According to LOAC, you could target their bullet-building factory (home?) and if they are inside, then that's tough luck. But you can't directly target them under current international law.
If they tried building another factory/house, you (you are a country, right??) could occupy their territory, imposing martial law, and send to jail any non-combatants that aided the enemy. But you can't just shoot then w/o trial for making ammo them unless they become unlawful combatants (pick up a gun and shoot at you).

Re:(Un)Surprising (2, Informative)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29761989)

BTW:

The firebombs that Britain used in Germany were FAR more deadly than the 2 nukes the USA dropped. The nukes killed a few thousand, while the firebombs killed hundreds of thousands. Example: It is said the fires in Dresden raged so fiercely that the oxygen was sucked out of the air, and people suffocated to death. They just fell dead whereever they were - in bed, hiding in basements, running down the street.

To me it seems odd to single-out two bombs, while ignoring the millions of other bombs that had been dropped from 1939 through 45. Those non-nukes also killed people, including innocent girls and boys that didn't deserve to die but were caught in the middle of the fight. War is hell, no matter if you use nukes or TNT.

Almost 70 million people died during WW2. Only 0.2% of them died by nuclear fission bomb.

Re:(Un)Surprising (2, Informative)

sopssa (1498795) | about 5 years ago | (#29762211)

Those nukes we're intentionally made to kill civilians and destroy normal cities - not to attack against military targets.

Your "few thousands" killed is a 'little' bit off too;

The bombs killed as many as 140,000 people in Hiroshima and 80,000 in Nagasaki by the end of 1945,[4] with roughly half of those deaths occurring on the days of the bombings. Amongst these, 15–20% died from injuries or the combined effects of flash burns, trauma, and radiation burns, compounded by illness, malnutrition and radiation sickness.[5] Since then, more have died from leukemia (231 observed) and solid cancers (334 observed) attributed to exposure to radiation released by the bombs.[6] In both cities, most of the dead were civilians.[7][8][9]

the japanese were massively propagandized (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 5 years ago | (#29762039)

read about saipan and banzai cliff:

http://xmb.stuffucanuse.com/xmb/viewthread.php?tid=1111 [stuffucanuse.com]

japanese propaganda was basically that the gaijin were horrible devils who would rape and pillage and torture just for the fun of it. as american victory dawned on them, women would take their babies in their arms and jump off banzai cliff to avoid that horrendous fate

you could not end the war with a blockade or a declining to invade the homeland. and if you invaded the homeland, the civilians would put up great resistance, or kill themselves. nuking hiroshima and nagasaki saved countless lives. of course nuking anything is a horrible evil, but you can't examine that horrible evil in a vacuum of context. all other choices were much worse horrible evils

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

rev_g33k_101 (886348) | about 5 years ago | (#29762065)

not like we did not warn [trumanlibrary.org] them [pbs.org]

and the bomb was no worse then Japans [wikipedia.org] actions [wikipedia.org]

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

aynoknman (1071612) | about 5 years ago | (#29762207)

So if you point a gun at me, I can hunt down and disintegrate your entire family tree? Is that the policy you're advocating here? Take that to it's logical extreme: if a citizen of a foreign country kills someone in America, we have the right to nuke that person's homeland, because they started the killing.

Your logic is not extreme enough. Nuke his home planet! He is the same carbon based life form that caused the problem in the first place.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

sexconker (1179573) | about 5 years ago | (#29762351)

Welcome to WAR.
War is terrible, but absolute.

Kill or be killed.

Yes, it is ludicrous to assume that the entire populace of a nation you are at war with supports the war.

But it is folly to assume that because they are civilians they do not pose an active threat.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

kalirion (728907) | about 5 years ago | (#29761725)

If Japan's citizens did not want to be nuked, then they should have stopped their government from killing millions of Chinese, Filipinos, and other Asian neighbors. They started the killing; then they reaped what they had sowed.

While it may have ended up as some perverse National Karma, I sincerely doubt the U.S. nuked Japan in order to help the other Asian nations.

Re:(Un)Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761869)

If American citizens did not want to be nuked, then they should have stopped their government from killing millions of people in islamic countries. They started the killing over oil; then they will reap what they have sowed.

Fixed for you.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

digitig (1056110) | about 5 years ago | (#29761945)

That might justify Hiroshima. Nagasaki is not so easy.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | about 5 years ago | (#29761975)

I'm quite certain you'll find most of the citizens of the country have very little to do with the firing of the weapons.

You'll also find very few people who think the nuking of a civilian population is a good thing from a historical perspective either.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

X0563511 (793323) | about 5 years ago | (#29762363)

Yes, but unfortunatly there was no historical perspective when it came down to the nukes.

Besides... it's not like we did it with no warning, and had backed them into a corner with no chance to supplicate.

If there's a big sign above a button that says "warning: pressing this button will result in your death" - is anyone to blame but you for pushing that button?

Re:(Un)Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29762031)

> Do I think there was any other choice? No

Nuking an area without a city, and listen if the japs surrender would have been feasible. But I suspect US needed guinea pigs to see how the bombs worked. And i don't mean to be anti-US by these assertions. Regardless their flag, nuclear powers have tested stuff on civilians, their own, even.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

KillerBob (217953) | about 5 years ago | (#29762231)

You do realize that the bombs were dropped after the battles at Midway and the invasion and taking of Okinawa? Little Boy (Hiroshima) was dropped August 6, 1945, and Okinawa ended in June, 1945.

In other words, the war was effectively over. By the end of the battle of Okinawa, Allied victory in the Pacific was pretty much guaranteed. The Japanese lines had been broken, and the Allies had a strong foothold on Japanese soil. They most certainly did have a choice about whether or not to drop the nuclear bombs. That was more of a publicity stunt than anything... while it did shorten the war, its effect was more to start the cold war than it was to end the Pacific war.

Re:(Un)Surprising (1)

Shakrai (717556) | about 5 years ago | (#29761643)

It's not unusual for governments to devote their greatest abilities to the worst ends (see: Hiroshima, Japan).

Blame Einstein [dannen.com] for that one. Committed pacifist that he was he was still sufficiently afraid of the idea of Hitler having the bomb as to use his influence to get the United States to build one first.

Re:Surprising (5, Insightful)

Foobar of Borg (690622) | about 5 years ago | (#29761375)

It's actually quite interesting what Chinese goverment is capable of on technical terms. Most of the goverments are quite clueless when it comes to computer and internet stuff, but Chinese seem to be on the track always.

Indeed. If the UK tried this, not only would it not work, it would somehow leak all the troop and ship locations to everyone in the world, along with Gordon Brown's gay lover's telephone number.

Re:Surprising (5, Funny)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 5 years ago | (#29761459)

along with Gordon Brown's gay lover's telephone number.

Oh.. ha ha... Unrelated note: I need to go change my phone number right now.

Re:Surprising (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | about 5 years ago | (#29761755)

Arnold Murray? [wikipedia.org]

You lil' homewrecker, you!

Re:Surprising (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761891)

You too?

Re:Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761797)

It would be easy to find almost all of the Tor exit nodes.

reason (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761973)

Gordon Brown's gay lover's telephone number.

There is a reason his last name is 'Brown',

Re:Surprising (5, Insightful)

SomeJoel (1061138) | about 5 years ago | (#29761431)

It's actually quite interesting what Chinese goverment is capable of on technical terms. Most of the goverments are quite clueless when it comes to computer and internet stuff, but Chinese seem to be on the track always.

The Chinese government is capable because unlike most countries, it has to be. For countries like the U.S., Japan, and most European countries, the citizens are fairly free to go about their business without fear of government reprisal. So, these countries simply don't care (nor do they need to care) about the best ways to shut off their citizens' freedoms.

Other highly controlling countries, such as North Korea, have citizens who simply don't have access to these things to begin with, so there is no need to shut them off.

Re:Surprising (0)

QCompson (675963) | about 5 years ago | (#29761739)

For countries like the U.S., Japan, and most European countries, the citizens are fairly free to go about their business without fear of government reprisal.

How do you square this with the U.S. having the highest incarceration rate in the world?

Re:Surprising (3, Insightful)

thrillseeker (518224) | about 5 years ago | (#29761887)

The incarceration rate in Iran is very low - why just this week they executed a man for being gay rather than increase their incarceration rate to a level that might disturb you.

Re:Surprising (3, Insightful)

QCompson (675963) | about 5 years ago | (#29761979)

Way to avoid the question (and get modded up for it). Are you implying that the United States' high incarceration rate has no correlation with a lack of personal freedom or government control?

Re:Surprising (1)

X0563511 (793323) | about 5 years ago | (#29762441)

Because our punishments are mild compared to those elsewhere.

If the penalty for stealing was dismemberment or painful death, a lot less would-be shoplifters would act.

Other countries have similar high-stakes. While it may not be as plain as my above example, they are just as strong in those cultures. For some, being ostracized would be a very severe punishment.

It all depends on the culture. When you look at ours... it's so empty that there is little to discourage (that we will stomach enough to utilize).

Re:Surprising (1)

ground.zero.612 (1563557) | about 5 years ago | (#29761963)

I imagine the US is Fred, Velma, Daphne, Shaggy, and Scooby (aka Scooby and the gang). This makes China the classic Scooby-Doo villain. I can hear China in my head as I type this... "If it weren't for those meddling kids!"

Re:Surprising (1, Redundant)

steveb3210 (962811) | about 5 years ago | (#29762393)

I imagine the US is Fred, Velma, Daphne, Shaggy, and Scooby (aka Scooby and the gang). This makes China the classic Scooby-Doo villain. I can hear China in my head as I type this... "If it weren't for those meddling kids!"

Everybody who went to school near Amherst, MA knows, Fred is Amherst College Velma is Smith College Shaggy is Hampshire College Daphne is Mt. Holyoke College And my alma mater, UMass, is Scooby Doooooo..

Re:Surprising (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | about 5 years ago | (#29762459)

You really think that most governments are clueless?
Almost all the industrialized nations have access to experts that could block tor just as well.
They don't do it because it is illegal to do it in those nations or they find it immoral to do.
I always thought it funny that people thought that TOR was unstoppable by the Chinese or any other government.
The elected officials may have limited knowlege of technology but they don't handle the details they give the orders.

I love this (4, Funny)

koan (80826) | about 5 years ago | (#29761383)

It gives me hope to see how people can get around this sort of oppression, I am hoping that it stays that way, that we will always have the option of communicating with each other, that no corporation or government will strangle.
I truly hope it stays that way.

An open Internet is power to the people.

Re:I love this (2, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | about 5 years ago | (#29761419)

> I truly hope it stays that way.

  At "tens of thousands" of Tor users out of a population of over a billion? I'm sure the Chinese government agrees with you.

Then IM and Twitter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761393)

will be subsequently blocked.

Same result as the Twitter overthrow of Iran.

BFD !

Yours In Elektrogorsk [youtube.com] ,
Kilgore Trout

The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (4, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | about 5 years ago | (#29761401)

There was just recently a slashdot article about Congress passing a law to allow them to monitor what passes through anonymous networks. Many of the EU states have similar capabilities. We look at China as an example of government censorship, but maybe we ought to look at our own homes as well.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (1)

sakdoctor (1087155) | about 5 years ago | (#29761451)

This.

I think China is bad, moving in a positive direction. Aging dictators, a colossal age gap, then a young generation who came up with grass mud horse, and will eventually topple the censorship.
We're one dodgy ground at the moment, and moving in a negative direction. Internet freedom in the west is on the edge of the abyss.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (5, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | about 5 years ago | (#29761713)

There was just recently a slashdot article about Congress passing a law to allow them to monitor what passes through anonymous networks.

I'm gonna go out on a limb and say it's about 50% child pornography, 25% copyright infringement, 15% trolling on sites that banned someone and 10% legitimate speech that has a valid need for anonymity. I ran a tor exit node for three days before I got curious enough to fire up wireshark and see what kind of traffic was passing through it. I shut it down after I discovered that the vast majority of it was child pornography being downloaded from servers in Eastern Europe.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761791)

So some freedom is okay, but only the freedom that you feel is okay? Information should be free. Get over the fact that not everyone has the same ideals you do. Get over the fact that not all things you hate are bad.

This is a true test whether something is anonymous, you obviously proved Tor is not very anonymous/free speech worthy.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (5, Insightful)

QCompson (675963) | about 5 years ago | (#29761815)

So you're willing to dismiss the 10% of legitimate speech?

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (4, Informative)

Shakrai (717556) | about 5 years ago | (#29761849)

No, I'm just not willing to use my resources to promote the exploitation of children.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (1)

QCompson (675963) | about 5 years ago | (#29761905)

No, I'm just not willing to use my resources to promote the exploitation of children.

But do you think Tor should exist at all? Or should governments aggressively stamp out any programs which attempt to provide their users with anonymity?

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (4, Interesting)

Shakrai (717556) | about 5 years ago | (#29761987)

I don't have a problem with tor existing. I've used it myself many times. I'm just not willing to support it with my network resources when child pornography makes up such a large portion of the traffic on the tor network.

Personally I would like to see someone design something like tor that would be limited to text based protocols like IRC, Usenet, etc. That would provide a channel of anonymous communication that could be deployed without sucking up as many resources as tor does and without supporting child pornography and copyright infringement. This would bring at least two benefits:

  1. More people would be willing to run tor nodes because they wouldn't have to donate as much bandwidth
  2. The network would be used for communication rather than bulk transfers of copyrighted works and/or child pornography.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (4, Informative)

linuxpyro (680927) | about 5 years ago | (#29762221)

Personally I would like to see someone design something like tor that would be limited to text based protocols like IRC, Usenet, etc.

You could set an exit policy to do just that, check the tor documentation. It might not stop other people from allowing Web traffic, but it would ensure people wouldn't be using your exit node for child porn. (Binary Usenet transfers or transfers over IRC aside.)

Hell, you could even limit what Web sites people can get to through your node. So you could still allow access to, say, Google and Wikipedia but no other sites.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (1)

meringuoid (568297) | about 5 years ago | (#29762267)

Personally I would like to see someone design something like tor that would be limited to text based protocols like IRC, Usenet, etc. That would provide a channel of anonymous communication that could be deployed without sucking up as many resources as tor does and without supporting child pornography and copyright infringement.

Well, you can restrict the ports available on your exit node, such that only connections to NNTP or IRC services are available. Because nobody downloads cp on IRC or Usenet. It's not hard to convert a binary file into a long string of perfectly valid ASCII and pipe it through a text-only protocol. I imagine that to the child pornographer anonymity is more important than speed, so he'll accept the hit on performance if that's what it takes. Enough people do this and you'll likely find that there's a whole LOT of ASCII gibberish going through your Usenet-via-TOR service, and guess what it decodes to?

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (1)

JesseMcDonald (536341) | about 5 years ago | (#29762295)

Are you really so naive as to think that IRC and Usenet can only be used to transfer plain text? Ever hear of uuencoding (encoding binary data as base-64 text)? Some (old) SMTP systems are limited to 7-bit ASCII; that doesn't stop anyone from using them to transfer binary attachments.

All you've done is made the network less efficient, without limiting how it can be used.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (1)

Xiterion (809456) | about 5 years ago | (#29762389)

While I agree totally with the sentiment - I think it's basically unenforceable. Require only text, then just send binary files in a text format like intel hex or s-record. Unwieldly, but still effective. And besides, would it be worth losing the ability to simply transfer information other than text, such as maps. While that approach would certainly be better than nothing, I can't see a way around the fundamental problem that freedom can't be easily regulated to only include freedom to do things you approve of.

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29762377)

WON'T SOMEBODY PLEASE THINK OF THE CHILDREN?!?!?

Filter error: Don't use so many caps. It's like YELLING.

obviously the filter doesn't know that we're trying to protect children here.

there's a concept you should learn: "scale" (3, Interesting)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 5 years ago | (#29761913)

to honestly sit here and put forth the idea that the level of censorship in the west is anything remotely near what china does, you've arrived at intellectual fail. the SCALE of the effort matters. if the west, for example, tries to find kiddie porn, it is entirely in your right to debate that effort and question its relevancy, effectiveness, and the direction of such laws

now, if you were to actually engage in such criticism in china, a nice young man or woman in one of the many banks of party loyalists who actually monitor signs of dissent on the web would make note of you, track you, and actually admonish you or outright punish you. simply for stating your political opinion

do you really think that's anywhere remotely the same thing as trying to control kiddie porn? again, i'm not saying you don't have a right to criticize to western internet controls, but you have no right, in the least, to compare it to the colossal amount of censorship and control in china. the SCALE of the effort over there is off the charts

as proof, if you were in china, you would never have written what you just wrote in terms of criticising the chinese government. you'd be too scared to. but here on western servers in a western political environment, you have no problem criticizing western politics. as you have every right to. but don't be an ludicrous about your criticism by trying to mention it in the same breath as the lockdown environment in china

for example: i can call obama a moron if i want to. i can rant until blue in the face about how he is the devil incarnate. no big deal in the west. most wouldn't even care. now if i attempted to do the same about wen jiabao in china, they would actually track me, perhaps even show up at my doorstep, perhaps even send me to some prison camp for "political reeducation". do you doubt this is a reality? then why do you think chinese internet controls is a parallel to anything in the west? be intellectually honest. consider the idea of "scale"

now, if i actually sat here and threatened obama's life, someone in the west might try to track me. a case could be made that that's a valid reason for internet monitoring. a case could also be made that that's not valid. but at least in the west, i can actually question my government and its policies, argue about it in an open environment, and not worry about goons showing up at my door. well, besides the paranoid schizophrenic amongst us

<knock, knock/>

sorry, be right back, someone's at the door for some reason

pfffft

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29762045)

Let me help you out here so you can better follow the blame America first checklist.

When China does something bad, to avoid condemning the people responsible, always try:
1) Blame America for making them do it. Failing that:
2) Draw a moral equivalence to America, saying that America does it too. If that also fails,
3) Claim it's not such a bad idea after all and that it has its merits. And if all else fails,
4) Blame Bush, FoxNews, and right wing talk radio - that's sure to work.

Remember, every little bit of good press helps in trying to excuse the dictators and the things they do.
Ra-rah go team!

Re:The U.S. and the EU have the same power. (1)

dave562 (969951) | about 5 years ago | (#29762063)

China is simply the testing ground where they are working out all of the bugs with the hardware and software. When all of the censorship was happening in Iran around the time of the disputed elections, it came out that Nortel was working with the Iranian government to filter the internet traffic coming in and out of the country. It wouldn't surprise me if multi-national corporations weren't playing similar rolls in China's networking infrastructure. If not Nortel, then Cisco, or Juniper, or one of the other major players in networking equipment.

It's a poorly kept secret within the United States government that the whole consumer oriented push of the internet has been in part a ploy to get people accustomed to interacting with computers. I've talked to operators associated with DHS who have told me that what they see coming in the next couple of decades is a full blown, total information awareness style population tracking program. The government wants to be able to fully account for all of the resources each individual is using, down to what they buy a the grocery store, how much they are spending on health care, and obviously, what sort of interactions they are having with law enforcement. The big concern that the government is trying to get out ahead of is global warming. They're really concerned with food shortages and want to have a program in place to implement rationing if/when the time comes. Just think of it as a really big ERP system.

Joseph Javorski. Respected scientist. Now a fiend. (2, Funny)

Tetsujin (103070) | about 5 years ago | (#29761455)

"TIME FOR GO TO BED!"

That Tor just cracks me up...

I'm getting old (2, Funny)

thered2001 (1257950) | about 5 years ago | (#29761723)

After reading the headline, I thought China was doing harm to my favorite book publisher. "How could they be a threat to China?" I wondered. "Sure some of their books are thought-provoking, but really!"

go ahead china (4, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 5 years ago | (#29761733)

joust at that hydra

control freaks have at their psychological root a toxic amount of insecurity. the grumpy old men in beijing have to make sure society is "harmonious" even if that's nothing more than media shorthand for placid lies. the truth is often ugly, dissent is always ugly. but when you expose yourself to dissent and ugliness, you do nothing but strengthen your mind and your convictions and your bullshit detector. all china is doing with the massive amount of societal control is producing a generation of chinese minds that have nothing but cotton candy between the ears: unable to handle anything except the most stultifying of platitudes about the world and its nature, wilting at the slightest sign of trouble

china is supposed to be emerging world power? when chinese raised in the hermetically sealed climate controlled media environment of modern china interact with their compatriots from india, brazil, japan, usa, germany... what are these dunderheads going to be like? when they encounter the slightest bit of provocation or contrasting opinion to the almighty sense of "harmony" what are their social skills for that resistance? censor? ignore? run away?

a "harmonious society" seems nothing more to me than a way to ensure chinese minds in the generations to come are weak brittle minds incapable of understanding or processing criticism of any kind, because it's not "harmonious". "harmony": what a fucking bullshit codeword for "i'm insecure at the top, don't think anything that might make me feel threatened". this isn't about cultural differences, this is is about a colossal social weakness of modern china completely of chinese making, a society-wide achilles heel: "we can't handle criticism, cover your ears"

enjoy your cottonheaded future china, so sorry for my dissent. you can just ignore, dismiss, and censor me. that's obviously the best way to handle these words. pffffffft

Re:go ahead china (1)

Whorhay (1319089) | about 5 years ago | (#29761937)

What you say is true, in varying degrees for most every government I have ever read about. Not that I am anti government, anarchy isn't likely to get us anywhere fast. But people by and large the world over are afraid of unknowns, and will seek to shelter themselves and their progeny from the things that scare them. And of course there are plenty of power hungry asshats who will take advantage of any little power they are given to gain more by pandering to the masses in this regard.

absolutely (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 5 years ago | (#29762107)

no modern society doesn't do this to some degree. but you can't be intellectually honest and claim that the level to which the chinese government manipulates the media is anywhere near what happens in the west, by orders of magnitude

as a matter of scale, what the chinese do in terms of media manipulation makes what western governments do in comparison a joke

Re:go ahead china (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761969)

Dude you need a zanax and a beer.

Chinese (government) owned Tor sites? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29761841)

Could China start its own network of Tor sites that had evil bits to actually track users?
Perhaps I know too little about tor.

CANADA! (0, Offtopic)

Yvan256 (722131) | about 5 years ago | (#29761889)

... sorry, nobody had mentioned us in the discussions so far.

firewall vs. drywall (1)

nycguy (892403) | about 5 years ago | (#29761947)

Apparently China's firewall is a lot better than their drywall [yahoo.com] .

Re:firewall vs. drywall (1)

cyfer2000 (548592) | about 5 years ago | (#29762445)

I wrote a report on the Chinese drywall issue and free trade on my MBA class. The whole story include a German company and its manufacturing plant in China, one shipping company, one importer, several builders and house owners. If you forget those sensational news and dig into legal documents, you will find that the importer of the drywall in question failed to get customs documents for the dry wall in question. So those drywall were sitting on boats for as long as 6 months along Florida coast. This elongated exposure to high temperature, high humidity and corrosive environment was identified as cause of the "stinky drywall". And my conclusion was in a world of true "free trade", where no customs documents are required, this unfortunate incident won't have happened.

It is strange what they filter... (2, Interesting)

mathfeel (937008) | about 5 years ago | (#29762103)

I was posting in a Hong Kong (note: not the mainland) Linux user group forum the other day and advising someone to use dyndns.org. The string "dyndns.org" got filtered into ">>>
I didn't know dyndns is a threat in HK.

Tor team prepared for this, still works in China (4, Informative)

xiando (770382) | about 5 years ago | (#29762177)

The Tor developers knew that it would be very easy for tyrannical regimes to download the directory list and block all the IPs in it, so they prepared for this by implementing bridge support about a year ago. The bridge model makes it very hard to block Tor. Technologyreview briefly mentions this. What really happened, and you can all go read more about this in the Tor blog at blog.torproject.org, is that what has happened the last few days is that the number of people using Tor-servers directly dropped to near zero while the number of people using bridges exploded. People simply switched to using bridges when they found that the Tor-network had been blocked.

GFW in China (3, Interesting)

dUN82 (1657647) | about 5 years ago | (#29762315)

Well, it is clear that the CCP is implementing a more strict online blocking and censoring policy, OCT.1 is just one example of those that is exposed to the outside world. 2009 also marks the 20th anniversary of the Tienanmen Square 4JUN1989, CCP instructed all website in China, to disable comment functions through out the country, majority of the websites complied and rest of the simply shut down the their website claim as 'maintenance' as a protest, it was the official 'Chinese website maintenance day'. I would expect such policy to carried out repeatedly in the future. I am lucky enough to personally experience the internet, CCP style from Jun to Sep this year! Let me give you an example what it is like: 1st thing I get online I openned www.google.com and dare you search for anything, I really mean it, anything, you will be reset to death after click into page 2, 3 of the results if you are lucky not to be blocked immdieatly after click 'Google search' or 'I'm feeling not so lucky in China' button. Google image search is worse, you are assured by the CCP to not see anything that is in anyway related to harm a harmonious society. Youtube is certainly not working for like a year now, as long with victims such as blogger, worldpress,livejournal, facebook,twitter, basically anything that can help people find useful, uncensored information, or anything that can help 'words' getting around. Picasa was among the laest victim of the GFW, I have about 7G of photo stored on it, which I cannot show or share with 1/4 of the world population. I rarely use flickr, but words are it was ultra-unusually unblocked by the GFW afetr I fled China before OTC.1, my assumption is the journalist all over the world flocked the OCT.1 ceremony may get very very angry when they find they cannot upload to flickr. And when you just about to think can media freedom in China to be any worse? The answer is YES. Media censorship extents to movies, tvs, newspapers, almost anything you can think of! The Summer Olympic Games was as much as freedom the CCP can give to foreigners, which CCP immediately took back after the event, followed by the unrest in Tibet and Urumqi, and Taiwan. It is very likely the conflict between those parts I mentioned to get worse in the near future, and the GFW will further enforced by the CCP as a way to maintain their one-party-ruling.

No slashdot admin knows history (1)

GPLHost-Thomas (1330431) | about 5 years ago | (#29762365)

Who's the dumb /. admin that allowed this "news" to be published exactly 15 days after the national day? Hey, hello, Mao declared the new china on the 1st of October 1949 ... Also, the "news" that China is targeting Tor is quite old too...
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