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The UN wants to control the Internet

By Tom DeWeese
web posted December 1, 2003

Throughout the history of mankind, any time the spark of liberty has been ignited, one force or another has rushed to extinguish it. Today, in a world already suffocating under the weight of rules and regulations designed to control, tax and consume every outlet of human expression, the Internet stands as the only unregulated source of liberty in the world.

True to form, the United Nations is holding yet another international gathering to plot the takeover of the Internet. Meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, government diplomats and non-governmental organizations (NGO's) have gathered at the World Information Summit to discuss the "role of the media," in order to set "acceptable boundaries to freedom of expression." Acceptable to whom?

Nations like Brazil, India, China, and Saudi Arabia are among those pushing to have the UN take over control of the Internet. They argue that the Internet is a public resource that should be managed by national governments and, at an international level, by an intergovernmental body such as the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the UN agency responsible for organizing the information summit.

Their excuses for United Nations control of the Internet are typically designed to appeal to a wide variety of users. Government control, they argue, would prevent unwanted advertising called "spam;" stop the spread of computer viruses; protect privacy and beef up security of computer data banks; stop hate speech found in various web sites and (to appeal to Christians) to stop child pornography. It all sounds so perfect, so benevolent, so well organized.

The fact is, private servers like America Online  (AOL) and Microsoft are already developing programs to stop spam and, while spam may be annoying, is hardly a threat to anyone. The same is true concerning computer viruses. Government bureaucrats haven't been able to prevent attacks on government computers. It is doubtful that a toothless UN proclamation will do much to scare off the vermin who infect the Internet with deadly program killers. The only way to fight back is through private entities that have their livelihoods at stake.

Personal privacy over the Internet is certainly a problem, but government can do very little to protect us. Users must learn not to trust others with their personal information so easily. Private companies that depend on Internet commerce are already finding solutions because their very existence depends on it. Government can issue rules and regulations and fines until the cows come home, but thieves will find a way around them if people insist on ignoring the dangers.

It should come as no surprise that the greatest threat to personal privacy over the Internet today is posed by governments that gather information to profile users, snoop into bank accounts, and track our movements. Should we now put an unaccountable, faceless international bureaucracy in control to compound the situation?

Child pornography has become the universal excuse to regulate the Internet.
" Protect the children," is the battle cry, but this is comparable to anti-smoking agitators who use the bogus threat of second hand smoke. There are already government regulations designed to stop child pornography.

Overzealous law enforcement can make a trip around the Internet superhighway a dangerous one indeed. If you inadvertently visit a child pornography site, your home may be invaded by cops, your personal records impounded and your good name destroyed. Do you doubt that can happen? Just click onto www.whitehouse.com for a quick update on President Bush's latest activities and you will find yourself in a pornography web site! There are private companies and even religious organizations that provide filters to block pornography.

That leaves us with "hate talk." What is it? Many would immediately think of some racist diatribe from the Ku Klux Klan or perhaps some neo-Nazi skinheads engaged in gay bashing. The latest examples of hate talk, we're told, have been aimed at those of Arab descent. However, you may be surprised to learn that such "hate talk" isn't the most hateful according to most UN members. Hate crimes, according to Communist China, Cuba, Vietnam, and their ilk, are words spoken against the international "proletariat." In other words, talking against communist oppression is "hate talk."

In addition, attacks on unions; radical environmentalism; gun control; sustainable development, and abortion are considered divisive and hateful. Support of the Christian religion and the Ten Commandments is deemed radical and divisive. Advocating limited government control over our lives is called divisive. Anything uttered pro-Israel is said to be hateful. Any criticism of Islamic fundamentalism is deemed hateful.

Imagine a United Nations committee assigned to oversee the Internet that is made up of representatives of Communist China or an Islamic nation like Saudi Arabia. These oppressive nations are doing everything possible to ban uncontrolled Internet access in their countries. In fact, the only access permitted to the public in China is through Internet cafes where the computers are registered and inspected by the government.

This then is the real reason the United Nations seeks control of the Internet. It's not worried about spam or privacy. To the contrary, it's particularly interested in gaining access to your personal records. China certainly isn't interested in protecting the internet security of other nations, or of stopping viruses.  What they want is control of the last free voice in the world.

The Internet is the voice of freedom in the United States. It's the tool that has enabled conservatives to circumvent the stranglehold of the liberal elite media. It has become a way to issue alerts to stop or expose pending legislation.  Parents have used the Internet effectively to expose globalist school curriculum and gain access to secret evaluation tests being used on their children.

The Internet is also the voice of freedom around the world. Third world people, living under oppressive dictatorships, are able to gain access to information and truth. Though many Americans have forgotten the revolutionary ideals of a freedom spoken by our founding fathers, those currently living in the darkness of oppression find the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights as a light of hope.

Remember that the students who rallied for freedom in China's Tiananmen Square a decade ago were clutching the Declaration of Independence in their hands as they were
crushed under communist tanks. The forces of oppression fear the Internet. That's why they now seek to control it.

Everyday Internet users must also understand that the UN intends to tax their activities. Those tax plans, already on the table for consideration, will be used to fuel the UN agenda by paying for armies, courts and its own IRS--–all tools needed to morph itself into the global government it covets to be. Control the flow of international information and control the world.

Considering all of the ideas, proposals and schemes now seeping out of the United Nations that should frighten any freedom lover, none is more terrifying than UN control over the Internet.

With such power, the UN will control the flow of information, commerce, money and travel. Imagine all of that power in the hands of the Red Chinese and the Islamic terrorists and you can clearly imagine the dark ages that will surely descend over the world in a suffocating blanket of totalitarianism. Americans must now rise up in anger and horror to demand that the Bush Administration never give in to this insanity.

Tom DeWeese is president of the American Policy Center, an activist think tank headquartered in Warrenton, VA. The Center maintains an Internet site at www.americanpolicy.org. © Tom DeWeese 2003

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