What Happens in Iraq Stays in Iraq

50 comments

While US soldiers continue to die in Iraq, the US has finally decided to increase security. No, they are not talking about getting that safety armor they have been lacking for years, they are worried about protecting their computers. The Pentagon is limiting soldier access to numerous websites, especially video sites:

"This is as much an information war as it is bombs and bullets," [Noah Shachtman] said. "And they are muzzling their best voices."

The sites covered by the ban are the video-sharing sites YouTube, Metacafe, IFilm, StupidVideos and FileCabi; social networking sites MySpace, BlackPlanet and Hi5; music sites Pandora, MTV, 1.fm and live365, and the photo-sharing site Photobucket.

Land of the free, etc...and those who are being killed for it can't share their stories. Neat how that works. I would love to see congressmen who vote for wars pledge their children to the effort to show their support.

Comments

blah...

Thats take is just incorrect Aaron. I currently work for the coast guard and was a reservist as a CT ( a network guy ) in the Navy and I can unofficially verify that bandwidth is a huge concern for us. Also its an issue is what should you be viewing at work.. I guarantee you its not youtube.

nice title

nice title ;-)

Quote: nice title ;-) +1

Quote:
nice title ;-)

+1

Bull...

If bandwidth is such an issue why not stop ALL unauthorized traffic?

What this is all about are all those hundreds of videos made by US troops of US troops in Iraq that embarrass the Military.

For example...
I just watched a video where a fire squad of US Marines in Iraq gave an eight year old Iraqi Boy a mouth full of chewing tobacco then the Marines laughed and laughed while the eight year old ate the tobacco and then fell to the ground and violently vomited for at least five minutes before the video stopped.

This video made me sick and as an Ex-Marine myself it made me angry, very angry.

These type of videos are all over and you know the Brass is not happy so... no more access to the video sites...

blah blah...

I'm sure you don't know this because you probably didn't do infantry, but body armor is heavy, stiff and hot. Moving around with the stuff on in Iraq is a pain and no one likes wearing it. A lot of guys just stick cardboard where the metal plate so the squad leaders don't notice. They don't want any more body armor. At least the guys I talk to. The only people asking for more are the xos and officers who say it to be politically correct. And now the new armor on Humvees are keeping soldiers trapped inside.

I don't know much about the bandwidth issue, but what webprofessor says sounds right on.

There are many reasons the miltary may not..

..like what comes over the net into public view.

I had a debate with someone in the military recently, who was seriously concerned because although troops were banned from taking mobiles to Iraq, they were then buying them from the locals. (If you can't think why that should be of concern - please go away and think for awhile)

And if you actually stop to think, video is an absolute giveaway to troop positions especially to an enemy who knows the area better than you do.

Yes I'm left wing, yes I believe in freedom of speech - but I also believe in protecting our squaddies from their own stupidity.

video is an absolute

video is an absolute giveaway to troop positions especially to an enemy who knows the area better than you do.

If this was the real issue I doubt it would have come to light in 2007...years into the war

> body armor is heavy,

>> body armor is heavy, stiff and hot. Moving around with the stuff on in Iraq is a pain and no one likes wearing it.

Hmmm, right up to the time when they see the guy on point take an HV round in the chest, and then die because cardboard doesn't really bleed off much KE, I bet....

>> I can unofficially verify that bandwidth is a huge concern for us

Yeesh - in a world where more comms capacity lies dormant today than existed everywhwere until about 20 years ago, why am I not surprised that a military organisation can't find a few more Mbps?

The US military currently has around 1.4m members, and an annual budget in excess of $500bn. As a counterpoint, Google has around 11,000 employees, a market cap of around $150bn, and free cash flow of around $2.5bn. Google has built one of the most pervasive, stable and responsive IT infrastructures in the world on a fraction of the resource.

Granted, Google don't have the capital drain of purchasing and maintaining heavy combat equipment (unless there's a LOT they aren't telling us), but would it really kill the US military to invest a couple of million in new cabling? OK, if the issue is satellite bandwidth, say, it's a bit pricier to chuck things into orbit, but still... the owner of a Class A block has bandwidth issues? Please

>> "The U.S. Army's not going to pay the bill for you to get on MySpace and YouTube," said Maj. Bruce Mumford

Hmmm, isn't this more or less a modern equivalent of mail call? Historically, the US military (and others) have spent disproportionate amounts to ensure that mail to and from home is delivered, because of the morale boosting effects that communication with those you've left behind can have

...

Quote:
Historically, the US military (and others) have spent disproportionate amounts to ensure that mail to and from home is delivered

And also historically the US military and others have spent disproportionate amounts censoring mail from combat zones. The problem is now they don't have the same control in an environment where instant global communication is the norm for all.

They aren't saying "you

They aren't saying "you can't post to youtube". They are saying "you can't post to youtube from the DOD network". Yeah, bandwidth is a concern, but there's also the security prospect as well. Plenty of botnet/adware/junkware is spread via these sites or sites that are heavily marketed on them.

How could bandwidth not be a concern? They don't have RoadRunner in Iraq. The infrastructure of the whole nation was recently bombed to oblivion - and it's not like the infrastructure was even that good to begin with.

Quote:I'm sure you don't

Quote:
I'm sure you don't know this because you probably didn't do infantry, but body armor is heavy, stiff and hot. Moving around with the stuff on in Iraq is a pain and no one likes wearing it.

I did infantry and can tell you that the entire existence is uncomfortable, body armor being just a small part of the equation. You wear something for 5 or 6 days (straight) and it is no longer a major hindrance, its called acclimatization.

It sounds like you got your information from wannabes that are in the rear with the gear.

Quote:
The only people asking for more are the xos and officers who say it to be politically correct.

I call BS.

Accountability for wearing proper gear is at the platoon/squad leader level, no one at that level is going to allow cardboard substitutes and believe me they know everyones business. They are also not going to knowingly get their troops/friends whacked because of comfort issues.

Very macho thread

.

What would people say if

What would people say if something did get released via youtube that ended up in someone getting hurt? Someone would get hung out to dry for sure for not "filtering" or "controlling access" and the public would question why did it happen when all they had to do was X Y and Z.

..



Quote:
I'm sure you don't know this because you probably didn't do infantry, body armor is heavy, stiff and hot.

I am 55+ years old, when I was in the Marine Corps we were involved in another war and I was a “Grunt” (Infantry for those who don't know what a Grunt is), the only ‘body armor” we had was the MMCG (Mean Marine Corps Green), it did not stop flak or bullets. However, being made out of thin cotton fabric MMCG was light and flexible and that was a big plus in the jungle.

***

This war in Iraq has been run like an exercise in media control.

Embedded News Reporters.- No Free Press allowed (First US declared war in History NOT to allow the US free press full and complete access.)

No Pictures or images of our thousands of heroic young men returning in their flag draped coffins.
(This really pisses me off, our Heros should be honored, not ignored.)

An administration and Pentagon that hires multi-million dollar media ‘consultants’ to ‘spin’ the news from Iraq. The same consultants that the tobacco company's hire to convince folks that cigarettes are not bad for you...

From day one of this war, the administration has attempted to tightly control any and all negative press coming out of Iraq, so that we Americans get the “right” message.

I see this as just one more rather lame attempt to control the bad press coming out of Iraq.

They aren't saying "you

They aren't saying "you can't post to youtube". They are saying "you can't post to youtube from the DOD network".

Yes you can post that video. Go to the village where 12 of your platoonmates were recently killed, and play at the internet cafe durring off time between 10 and 12 pm (when the internet cafe is closed). Hope the upload works well and you don't get hurt.

What would people say if something did get released via youtube that ended up in someone getting hurt?

If some of the videos caused the public outrage they knowingly should, one might say that the videos SAVE lives by ending the war sooner.

Stop spinning my question

Stop spinning my question Aaron. If something negative were to happen due to unrestricted internet access from a DOD network the public would be all over the Pentagon about how they should of controlled the flow of information. You know as well as I do from experience that most career military personnel are only about covering their asses. Thats all they are doing here.

//added:
That is in addition to addressing the very real network problems many units have.

it wouldn't seem so much

it wouldn't seem so much like bullshit if they hadn't just announce this

The US military has taken the war in Iraq into cyberspace, with the launch of its own channel on the video-sharing website YouTube.

Its 25 brief clips include footage of US soldiers firing at unseen snipers in Baghdad, handing out footballs to Iraqi children and rescuing an Iraqi family injured by an explosive device.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6639401.stm

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Quote:
If something negative were to happen due to unrestricted internet access from a DOD network

Most likely scenario, IMO, the public would never learn of it.

If somehow the public did find out, I think how the White House Propaganda People decided to spin the story would be the reaction of the “public”... or at least the reaction of the main stream media in the US.

Me Cynical... well maybe a little :-)

Classic.As soon as my

Quote:
With titles like Battle on Haifa Street and Iraqi Boy Scouts Prepare for Jamboree, the clips are intended to show a "boots on the ground" perspective of Iraq, a statement on the site says.

Classic.

As soon as my client decides to buy a domain name on the aftermarket, I have it quietly inserted into the corporate network DNS -> localhost. As broker to the deal, I have a message I need to deliver to the current owner, and I can't afford to have other messages getting in the way.

Classic "communications" theory.

Aaron...you're starting to sound like....

...Michael Moore! How can congressmen/women pledge their children to go fight? Last I checked you had to be an adult to join the military and you join upon your own free-will. Sure, there are exceptions to the adult rule, such as a 17 y/o high school senior can join w/ his parents permission and enter active duty straight after graduation. But nobody can pledge their children to go fight in a war.

free will is not free will...

when we practice censorship and lie to deceive the stupid majority.

At the very least encourage the child to join. Like none out of hundreds is quite bad if these people are so passionate about war.

If you did a breakdown of recruits vs wealth distribution you would see how military marketing preys on the poor. It wouldn't seem so bad if we didn't practice censorship and blatantly lie to gain support for the war.

Are the chances of getting killed in military service..

..any greater than those of being killed in a poor ghetto in a major city?

Harry isn't going

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,,2081006,00.html

Discuss - American hypocrites

I am behind Aaron 100% on this

> If you did a breakdown of

>> If you did a breakdown of recruits vs wealth distribution you would see how military marketing preys on the poor.

Um, that's been true of just about every military force everywhere, ever. Joining the armed services has always been a route out of poverty. You can argue endlessly about whether it's "right" or not, but it's been a fact of human society since we have records, going back to the Byzantine Empire.

Consider, for example, that the Army / Navy with which Britain won and held it's Empire were almost exclusively composed of the poor (at least in the enlisted ranks - the Officer Corps was, of course, almost entirely aristocratic or at least middle class).

In fact, Wellingtons army during the Peninsular Campaign against France (Napoleon was busy in Russia at the time) was about 1/3 Irish - we'd just finished putting down a rebellion there, and given a choice between maybe getting shot in service to the Crown or definitely being badly persecuted and possibly hung and maybe starving while you're at it, a lot of Irish joined the Army of the King they despised. Compared to what was happening at home, being in a war zone was nearly a holiday.

A lot of the Englishmen in the Army were simililarly motivated more by the idea that the Army would feed them more or less regularly, or enlisted as an alternative to execution etc, rather than for any particular love of country.

If anything, modern, professional armed services have the most balanced intake of all socio-economic groups ever. That's partly due to the increased respectability of a military career (for most of history, "soldier" has been nearly synonymous with "thief"), and the increased technical requirements of military service requiring a more and more educated pool of recruits, thus extending the recruitment base more strongly into the more educated middle classes than ever.

>> But nobody can pledge their children to go fight in a war.

A very modern perspective. "Return with your shield, or on it"

..

I think it is a little bit unrealistic to believe that the politicos that started and/or support the war in Iraq should send their own children to fight in the War.

However, I believe that any elected politico that is found to be profiting off of this war should have all of his property seized, his family turned out on the street and then he should be executed for high treason.

Quote:
...the Army / Navy with which Britain won and held it's Empire were almost exclusively composed of the poor (at least in the enlisted ranks - the Officer Corps was, of course, almost entirely aristocratic or at least middle class).

Not much has changed in the last few hundred years...
The foot solders in todays US Military are for the most part from poor/lower class families and are under educated, while the officer class are largely from more affluent families.

Quote:
...see how military marketing preys on the poor...

I think what Aaron is talking about (I am just guessing here) is how the US Military is currently targeting marketing directly towards the poor and uneducated in a very blatant manner.

Again, the same marketing people are behind these Military 'marketing' campaign's that are behind the resurgence of the use and addiction of tobacco among the young(under 18) in the US. A real nice bunch of folks...

Those are suprising statements from marketers

Are you suggesting that its immoral to target a segment of the population you are most likely to get a conversion from?

..

Quote:
Are you suggesting that its immoral to target a segment of the population you are most likely to get a conversion from?

In some cases, Yes I believe it is.

market gambling to people that have gambling problems.

market liquor to an alcoholic...

Porn to a rapist...
etc etc...

I think what Aaron is

I think what Aaron is talking about (I am just guessing here) is how the US Military is currently targeting marketing directly towards the poor and uneducated in a very blatant manner.

Combine it with their "protect the children" filter the web rhetoric and it starts to feel quite hollow, especially when you consider that they hold pizza parties with war games to recruit children:

Wardynski began developing the game after a similar recruiting crisis in 1999, when top Army officials were looking for a way to reach out to potential recruits with minimal cost. Wardynski wanted an economical way to counter pop-culture images of the military with a no-nonsense approach to being a soldier. The game, he decided, would provide a gateway to information and entertainment, targeting boys 14 and older.

Words fail me...

*shudder*

UTube founders challenge

UTube founders challenge Pentagon.

Quote:
YouTube's co-founders on Thursday challenged the
Pentagon's assertion that soldiers overseas were sapping too much bandwidth by watching online videos, the military's principal rationale for blocking popular Web sites from Defense Department computers.
Quote:
Hurley expressed doubt that soldiers' use of YouTube could have any real effect on the military's massive network.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070518/ap_on_hi_te/youtube_military_4

Challenging the

Challenging the pentagon.

Its like these guys woke up one morning and made the decision to step in every pile of crap they could find.

Quote:
In their first extensive interview since YouTube was bought by Google in November, the YouTube video pioneers refused to allow the session to be videotaped.

Talk about creepy.

Enter The Spin Zone

My nephew laughed about this thread. The 'ban' is only for DoD computers, there's no ban on access if they have their own laptop. This was about REMFs tying up DoD computers, and certainly not about censorship.

>>recruiting children

Can't happen. Have to be 18 to sign the papers or parents have to sign for them and the wannabe recruits have to be 17 for parents to sign. Good thing there's no draft or a bunch of panties would be knotted up in bunches.

Meanwhile, I worry about my mom worrying about when she's going to get the call that another nephew is dead. She sleeps about three hours a night and constantly checks Myspace and email for news from her grandson that's already had one HMV blown out from under him. Limited access to YouTube is not the fucking issue.

..

Only the folks in the rear with the gear get their own lap tops. You know the guys behind the big walls...

I think the foot solders, you know the ones in the shit who really have something to say about this, might have a hard time carrying around their lap tops or getting them charged up.

I also understand that the foot solders in the fight are not allowed to carry their own cell phones or lap tops, so they have to use DoD equipment.

Sorry about your mom DG.
This war effects a lot of people, just like all wars. Thats why war should only be the very last choice.

Bullshit

>>Only the folks in the rear with the gear get their own lap tops

They don't pack them everywhere, but they certainly have them. 101st, 501st guys aren't in the rear with the gear.

>>you know the ones in the shit who really have something to say about this

One of them that's 'in the shit' has a Purple Heart and I['ve posted pictures of the HumVee he was in that was blown to shit.

Yeah, I know three of them. You've certainly demonstrated that YOU know nothing of which you speak though.

..

Sorry my knowledge about this only extends to the US Marine Corps.

I have three nephews, walking the streets in Iraq as well, one 19 year old and two twenty year olds, they are in the Marine Corps (It's kind of a tradition in my family for us to join the Marines).

Neither their mother, father or myself get to speak to them hardly at all, once a month for a few minutes (over DoD equipment) if were are lucky.

Once a Month

That sounds about right for the troops on missions. Kyle manages a few minutes a month. He didn't seem overly concerned with YouTube. ; )

..

Quote:
He didn't seem overly concerned with YouTube.

When your worried about staying alive, things like the Utube controversy don't seem very important.

oh dear

Controlling access to information for both the combatants and the civilians back home is an esential part of keeping a war on track - it has happened in 'worthy wars' and 'unworthy wars' and has been practiced by all sides.

Freedom of information is a nice concept, but it has never had a place in war. If the US or UK armed forces are foolish enough to allow unfettered internet access to those serving in Iraq then someone has got it badly wrong.

Its a cliche, but he first casualty of war always has been 'truth' - and for very good reasons - the only question is whether they are doing it 'smart' or 'stoopid'.

Quote: Yeah, I know three of

Quote:
Yeah, I know three of them. You've certainly demonstrated that YOU know nothing of which you speak though.

Aside from this being just plain rude - don't you think you are perhaps confusing 'three' with the entire army?

Of course, you may be right by accident, but that is just plain provocative rhetoric and doesn't help prove your case. I can almost see the neck veins bulging as the pointed finger jabs out the word 'YOU'... come on DG, you are better than that.

>recruiting children

>Can't happen. Have to be 18 to sign the papers or parents have to sign for them and the wannabe recruits have to be 17 for parents to sign.

Yeah, they may not get signed until they are 17/18, but their hearts and minds are set long before then through various recruitment/outreach efforts.

The public schools pressure kids to decide on a education/career path earlier and earlier...so kids/families are looking at options and making their decisions well before a child is 17 nowadays.

He said,

>>Only the folks in the rear with the gear get their own lap tops. You know the guys behind the big walls

Which is wrong. I personally know three people that aren't REMFs that definitely have their own laptops. Unless I were to assume they had some special privileges, which they don't, it's a safe bet that others that serve on combat missions have their own laptops. Not to mention that the three I know, know others, they talk back on and forth on Myspace when they get a chance, using their own laptops. My nephew has a video cam so my Mom and his mom can see him occasionally. They even play Oblivion.

I know this because I have a personal interest in those that are serving with my nephews. My interest extends to others that serve in Iraq.

I didn't confuse a thing. He mistakenly believed that only those rear echelon soldiers could have a laptop.

Any neck veins you see bulging are a product of your imagination.

come on DG, you are better than that

:)

The recruiting process

The recruiting process starts at 16 within the high schools... there is law that mandates schools receiving federal funding make student info available to recruiters. The DoD started a database of 16-18 year olds in 2005 (Washington post), and the info access laws were upgraded to "opt out" so the default is.. if you're kid is between 16 and 18 and in high school, his name/address/phone has been given to the local military recruiter.

And as Aaron suggests, it's really a matter of marketers seeking out younger targets. Here is Washington, our brilliant representatives expanded the access so other special interests could recruit our children as well (see this). Why should the military get all the warm bodies?

Didn't the navy research

Didn't the navy research laboratory invent onion routing, a la tor, http://tor.eff.org/ ?

I guess they'll find another good use for it, besides anonymity.

why YouTube is Bad...

Witness to a war crime - US Soldiers Shoot Unarmed Civilians
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xnyjH5wusqs
teasing the children of Iraq with water
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kInHbm3NqDQ

to be fair, there are plenty

to be fair, there are plenty of honorable troops with an immense amount of courage.

but

It is not a sign of good health to be well-adjusted to a sick society. - J. Krishnamurti

Quote: How can

Quote:
How can congressmen/women pledge their children to go fight? Last I checked you had to be an adult to join the military and you join upon your own free-will. Sure, there are exceptions to the adult rule, such as a 17 y/o high school senior can join w/ his parents permission and enter active duty straight after graduation. But nobody can pledge their children to go fight in a war.

They can't, and I don't think that's a fair point.

But what is fair is to question the military background and so-called "patriotism" of those who concocted and vehemently support the war. Go through the list of these guys from Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, Perle, Card, Kristol and on and on who weaseled their way out of fighting. You essentially have people who dodged being in the military, telling other people that their kids need to go off and die for their country. It's nothing but a bunch of two-bit cowards and chickenhawks running this country.

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