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How You Can Directly Help the People of Egypt, Tunisia, and Others When Governments Control Communications

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The Tor relay system allows individuals to access the internet while protecting their privacy and anonymity. This is of crucial importance to those whose governments are blocking access to their internet resources. 

You can install a Tor relay on your personal computer and directly assist those in other countries who are struggling for their freedom against their government oppressors.

Here are some resources to get you started:

Campaign Access: Help the People of Egypt

Help Egypt: Join the Cloud

Tor Project: Relay Configuration Instructions

The presence of numerous Tor relays will be an important service for the Egyptian people once internet service is again available. Following are some ways to open communication I have seen being discussed since the Egyptian government completely shut down the internet.

Ham Radio: There is discussion about trying to form an ARES type of emergency network via ham radio. If you know anything about this technology you can view the request here

Faxes: Faxes may be another way of communicating. As part of Operation Egypt, Anonymous has been faxing WikiLeaks documents to fax numbers associated with Egyptian schools. You can send free faxes to Egypt numbers here.

Free Dial-Up: French Data Network (FDN) is offering dial-up service, according to a post on the Operation Egypt Facebook page.

Follow the news on the Anonymous News Network Facebook Page or on Anonymous’ Operation Egypt Page.

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About Tolstoy's Cat

  • @58

    Good post.

  • Boeke

    60-cindy: you’ve got the numbers right, but very little of that 1.3B$ plus 250M$ sticks to Egyptian fingers. Egyptian foreign aid, as is typical, has Strings Attached. Namely, the money must be spent back in the USA. the 1.3B$ is committed to arms, to support the US military-industrial complex, and the 250M$ goes to agribusiness.

    Egyptian leaders realize that they are simply used as bagmen to move US taxpayer money to the US corporatocracy.

  • 52 Ruvy,

    Thanks. And that black cat is Clav’s own Minnie. No one knows how her picture got there. 🙂

  • INGY,

    The US already sends 1.3 billion/year to support Egypt’s totalitarian gov’t, along with 250 million for the people’s social welfare.

  • INGY


  • Our government’s bewildering policy of supporting autocratic Arab regimes is not a new issue, of course. Here’s a bit from a BC article I wrote in Dec. 2006:

    If most of the potential terrorists in the world are angry young Muslim men, taught to see the US as the Great Satan and the killer of children and the friend of autocratic Arab regimes, shouldn’t we try to change their minds, demonstrate that they’re wrong?

    Why instead do we bomb first and ask questions later, keep hundreds in detention for years without charges, maintain our largely uncritical “friendships” with the oppressive governments of Saudi Arabia and Egypt, prefer threats to diplomacy — in short, why do we go out of our way to prove to these young men that we are exactly as awful as they have been taught we are?

    This was about the Bush administration, and I don’t think things are identical now, but still…

    It’s also true that Bush criticized Mubarak publicly, alienating him and shutting down dialogue. Obama has kept the criticism private/behind the scenes, with the result that they may have been listening more. Doesn’t matter so much now.

  • You’re right in a way, Glenn. Give me a boy at three and I’ll turn him into a man when he’s seven – you know the saying. Even so with adults when you really engage them, but you must engage them. It’s just that all too many aren’t being engaged and they tend to congregate among their own kind; and there’s nothing to be gained from that other than reinforcing each other’s prejudices. And given that’s a fairly accurate description of the environment, such people can’t see beyond their very noses.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Clavos is wrong. People are not ‘essentially stupid’. There are many stupid people, but there are many more people who are intelligent.

    If I had not spent so much time outside of America, I might have agreed with him – but I’ve found to my delight that most people are not ‘essentially stupid’. But even the most intelligent can be misled, especially when the information that they receive is censored, filtered so that they only hear what someone wants them to hear.

    A great example would be how over sixty percent of scientists working for the government during the Dubya administration found that their research concerning climate change was censored or the results changed outright in such a way as to minimize or discredit the very idea of climate change…

    …and now, America has one of the highest proportions of population in the developed world that believes climate change is a hoax.

    No, people are generally quite intelligent, but they can still be misled.

  • peerless prose, I like that.

  • Boeke

    “But I think, Boeke, your post belongs on Genma’s thread.”

    True. Apparently, my computer crossed it’s hands and associated an input box with the wrong thread (it could not have been my mistake since my peerless prose always goes straight as an arrow to the mark).

  • Cats are nice, way nicer than people.

  • Ruvy

    I don’t like your politics, Cindy, but this is a public service of sorts. Appreciated. Nice black cat, too.

  • Oh, it changed already. It was ‘taco bell’ for a minute.

  • lol, #10, researching must make people hungry.

  • I think Clavos is essentially right. But occasionally people do rise to great heights. How else would we have gotten to the beautiful world we presently occupy?

    But yes, the list of trends does provide some basis for hope.

  • M

    Clavos maintains that people are essentially…stupid — and google.zeitgeist from 2010 supports his claim

    but there is hope for the zeitgeist yet

  • Does your disillusionment revolve around “Clavos’s dilemma”? If so, do tell and I’ll make certain to look it up.

  • M

    …didn’t mention my beliefs — only my disillusionment

    …but the shit is definitely in the breeze in the ME

  • So you say you don’t believe in Zeitgeist?

    Have to rethink though earlier reference to what you termed as “Clavos’ dilemma.”

  • M
  • Or as “toy puddle,” to use John le Carré’s apt turn of phrase from Absolute Friends when characterizing Tony Blair’s genuflected posture vis-a-vis George W.

    But I think, Boeke, your post belongs on Genma’s thread.

  • Boeke

    Sorry, I didn’t mean to derail the thread by referring to Justice Thomas as a ‘slave’ to Scalia, I should have called him Scalia’s ‘poodle’, a more modern context.

    When I thought of slavery it was not with our connotation of ‘black slave’, but rather the historical ‘slave’, which pre-dates us, and will live on long after we are gone and society thoroughly integrated.

    As for ‘uncle Tom’, IMO the attribution never seemed pejorative since I actually read “Uncle Toms Cabin” as a teenager and Tom seemed rather heroic to me. YMMV. So I’ve never called anyone an Uncle Tom.

  • Robert Weller

    Yes, the media does have a duty, although during the 40 years I have been in it I have seen it discarded. The word honor is never mentioned. That should be the duty of the media. Not buying into Pentagon lies to get front page interviews, though it did work for Judith Miller. The No. 1 media rule today is that merits mean nothing. All that counts is that other journalists will do it so we must also. We don’t have to do anything. We don’t have to keep a story No. 1 just because that was decided at an early morning news meeting. We don’t have to devote all of our resources to the SOTU. Now it even has an acronym.

  • Thanks, M. 🙂

  • M

    very useful piece Cindy — thanks

  • Quite a diatribe, Alan, which leads me to the question: what have you done lately to directly alleviate the government’s incursions into our freedoms, whether in America or in Egypt?

    I’d really like to know, because if you do have a viable plan of action, I certainly wouldn’t want to be left out. But to the best of my recollection, your claim to fame thus far has been limited to raising rather lame complaints over trivial aspects of censorship on this site – I say trivial because pertaining less to substance than to style. (Interestingly, you’re getting on Genma’s or my case for using the expression “Uncle Tom” while defending till you’re blue in the face outright rudeness in personal communications.

    If one didn’t know any better, one could write you off for plainly schizoid behavior. I’m aware, however, that you’re only trying to be provocative, to which I say, you’re not very good at it, clumsy in fact; so save it for situations that really matter.) Anyway, I view your post more as an expression of personal impotence, frustration I mean, lest you purposely misunderstand, than anything else.

    Point two. Thank God for division of labor; besides, we all have different talents. I’m quite comfortable with what I do, leaving other matters to others, knowing full well that what I do is what I do best. Anything wrong with that?

    Point three. Your impatience may be justified, but I’d like to remind you of the concept of “critical mass.” No wine before its time, my friend.

    As you were saying?

  • Diana, long time no see – hope you’re well.

    As to your comment, Facebook and Twitter have been really helpful in terms of letting ordinary people discuss and respond to contemporary events. Losing that access really does matter, so helping people to remain connected is a real benefit.

  • Alan, so you object to a discrete open group of people discussing matters of the day?

    How do you square that with all the freedom of speech issues you love to raise?

    Should I then take it that you are more activist yourself?

    What exactly are you doing in terms of “helping us to directly resist the incursions of the U.S. government into our privacy and personal freedoms”?

    Perhaps something more positive than petty bitching would be inspirational to others?

  • U.S. citizens’ regard for Egypt is creepy: “Forget the issues & injured. The Egyptian people can’t post pics/texts on Facebook or Twitter!”

  • BC’s armchair anarchists are Olympian in talking the talk but paralyzed when it comes to walking the walk. Just kick back with your laptops, guys & gals, and click our links to directly help the oppressed masses of Egypt, Tunisia, and unspecified others whose brutal governments have curtailed access to the Internet and all-powerful social media networks.

    Forget that we here in the United States have unfettered access to such channels of communication, yet have used them to do nothing more revolutionary than complain because Bristol Palin finished third on Dancing with the Stars.

    And especially forget that BC’s armchair anarchists have never shown the slightest interest in helping us to directly resist the incursions of the U.S. government into our privacy and personal freedoms. Oh, they blather and bloviate at endless length, but what concrete practical actions have they ever promoted?

  • Not to mention being attuned to the nuances of the English language.

  • ‘Riot’ is the preferred choice of news outlets that get fed by the authorities. The word ‘riot’ rather than ‘uprising’, ‘unrest’, ‘protest’ often gives an illegitimate flavor to the proceedings. Though, I acknowledge, this is not always necessarily so. Still, generally, my impression is many protesters do not prefer to be called rioters. Some see it as a sign of disrespect or lack of care. (Others are titillated.) Being on the ‘left’, one would think you would know such things.

  • their counterparts on the Left, MSNBC and the New York Times

    Not surprising that you believe this stuff is the ‘left’. They take their stories directly from authorities. Did you hear the Editor-in-chief of the Times tonight? He sounded like a gov’t shill.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Hm. Lemme see here – Conservative news outlets Fox News and the New York Post are referring to the “riots” in Egypt…and their counterparts on the Left, MSNBC and the New York Times also refer to them as “riots”…

    …but somehow, I’m the bad guy here.

    Gee, will somebody tell me how my use of the word “riots” was so incredibly offensive or inaccurate?

  • Neither did Hillary, apparently, until she’d changed here tune of late.

  • Robert Weller

    Biden defended Mubarak today. He obviously had not read last year’s State Department Human Rights report on Egypt, and it was before all the latest repression. The only reason we have these reports available is because Congress requires them. The last thing State wants to do is annoy a dictator.

  • Yeah, they are all the same. Not to worry, though, got other things on the burner.

  • I suppose he meant “public service.” And doesn’t the journalistic profession have something analogous to the Hippocratic oath?

  • Re # 24. You are welcome for the geography lesson even though those silly little Latin American countries (like the “Hispanics” who come from them) are all the same; or so I’ve been advised.

    You may “suppose” whatever you wish, of course. However, do I hope you are not serious about dying from anticipation; what a horrid way to go — to die without having one’s anticipations met. Sigh.


  • Whatever, Dan, at least we got your attention. And thanks for the geography lesson. The last I checked, Spain was in Africa. Wait, it was Palin who must have said that.

    Anyway, it’s good to know you’re being true to form. I suppose you supported the Iranians because the regime wasn’t receptive to American interests; and so, following the same line of reasoning, you’re undecided about Yemen, Tunisia and Egypt because those countries feature America-friendly dictators. (The good ole Hugo just doesn’t fit the bill.)

    So yes, I perfectly understand your judicious stance on the issues, not wanting to put your foot in your mouth prematurely. I’ll let you sift then first through the constitutional issues, your forte and claim to fame, before you come to an informed decision. So come again when you’re good ‘n ready! I, for one, am dying from anticipation.

  • Clavos

    …doing their legally bound duty.

    Say what??

    There is no “legally bound duty” for the media — not even one to be truthful or impartial — the only legal restriction, other than technical ones related to frequency assignments, etc. is the famous list of words they can’t use on the air.

    Oh, and some broadcasters are supposed to broadcast emergency information during disasters.

  • Roger, Re #7 some BC contributors, Dan Miller comes to mind, were clamoring for US intervention on behalf of the ruling class in San Salvador, purportedly to protect that country’s constitution.

    I wrote about Honduras, not el Salvador (San Salvador, the city to which the comment referred, is the capital city of el Salvador); Honduras is another of those stupid little Latin American countries; Perhaps they all look the same. However, I am quite glad you were able to learn a little about . . . well, whichever. Incidentally, I complained that the U.S. was intervening too much and opined that everything would be better if we stopped and permitted the constitutionally established government to handle the mess.

    You might want to study just a wee little bit about Venezuela, from which the peoples’ revolution, having done so well, was to be exported to Honduras.

    Not yet knowing enough to comment about the situation in Egypt (or was it Spain?), I haven’t had anything to say and still don’t. It is interesting, however, that Mubarak a short time ago announced that he had asked for the resignation of his cabinet and announced that a new cabinet would be assemble. Who? What does this mean? Sorry, I have at this point absolutely no idea.


  • Al Jazeera has a live news feed. You can hear imbecile’s like John Kerry on there supporting their local state interests. There is also an unrestricted live chat there.

  • make that “warm fuzzy feeling.” Sorry Glenn. Got to respect the correct word order.

  • Sorry to say, but Glenn the person is getting loathsome. The man has got no fiber in his body, only a fuzzy warm feeling.

  • Costello,

    Thank you for your comment. I followed the Iran Election uprising and that is where I learned about the Tor relay, which we used to donate our unused bandwidth to the Iranian people.

    I agree, our attention span is short. And how can people be expected to be involved with Iranian freedom when Real Housewives of Duluth is on.

  • Glenn’s cavalier opinions regarding dictators lately are getting particularly loathsome.

  • And BTW, am I to understand your use of the word “riots” on analogy with Watts or Harlem? Never mind, I’m giving you too much rope as it is. And no, I don’t expect a rational answer.

  • Interesting word, Glenn, “riots.” Very telling. I’ve always taken you for an upstanding, law & order guy. Now you’ve confirmed my conviction.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Boeke –

    I’ve found al-Jazeera to be a fairly reliable source of news – and certainly more reliable than Fox News.

  • You’ve got that right, Boeke. We’re all good, law-abiding citizens, Republicans or Democrats, lukewarm to the core, and we all believe in due process, revolution be damned. And the media is only doing what it’s supposed to, catering to sheeple.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    And Roger –

    In this thread, you posted, “J’accuse!” because I didn’t jump on the bandwagon about the riots in Egypt…while in another thread you’re defending the patently unworkable idea of a functioning anarchic society.

    At first I did not have you pegged as an irrational idealist…but so far today that’s what you’re showing yourself to be. Idealism is not a bad thing – it’s just like everything else: good when imbibed in moderation, and not so good when too much or too little is had.

    I recommend healthy shots of practicality and pragmatism to go with your idealism…and I daresay you’ll see better results.

  • I understand it perfectly, Glenn. You’ve got to evaluate the situation first in terms of the American perspective before you can come to an informed opinion. You are a judicious person and don’t want to speak rashly. Highly commendable.

  • Boeke

    I am astounded that there has been not one word of the Egyptian Revolution on US TV or radio!

    I started listening to the revolution at 5AM today on Al Jazeera radio and then searched in vain for a feed on US radio and TV. Nothing. I caught an Al Jazeera internet video feed for awhile but it was intermittent (I suppose US government agents were cutting the wires, and I’m only half joking).

    Not one word on our major commercial networks. Well, I guess we can expect that kind of disgrace from our privatized airwaves (in spite of the FCC charter saying the airwaves are for the benfit of the US public), but the PBS/NPRs were just as silent, until I finally caught a conversation on Megahertz Worldview from a college station.

    Our news is censored by the US government abetted by voluntary censorship from a private media more concerned with profits than doing their legally bound duty.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    FYI, Roger, I haven’t said anything because I don’t yet know all the issues. I don’t yet know all the sides of the story…and because of that, I’m loath to condemn one side and support the other if I’m not sufficiently knowledgeable in the issues at hand.

    For instance, remember that Egypt twice joined in war against Israel…yet in the 30 years of said ‘dictatorship’, have they declared war on anyone? No, quite the contrary – Egypt’s been one of the most moderate of all the nations in the Middle East. Bearing this in mind, should we be so quick to throw Mubarak under the bus?

    So NO, I don’t know all the issues…and I doubt that anyone else here does, either.

  • Interestingly, Baronious has also been conspicuously silent. His last excuse for sticking to the banality of American brand of politics – such as “media bias” and all such trivia – rather than engaging in hot topic of the day, was that no article has been written on the subject. Well, Baronius, not it has, so come out of the woodwork and give us a piece of your mind.

    Oddly enough, even Glenn and Baritone and his army of liberals and progressives have been rather mute, but perhaps they’re being conflicted about the “enlightened” US foreign policy under Obama and have decided, true to their partisan spirit, to sit this one out rather than risk being critical of their idol and leader. One would expect our BC conservatives to be silent, but our darling liberals, the hope and promise of a better world to come … now, that’s not only disheartening but downright pathetic.

    So yes, this is an indictment. In a word, J’accuse!

  • Well, perhaps the momentum wasn’t there. Besides, some BC contributors, Dan Miller comes to mind, were clamoring for US intervention on behalf of the ruling class in San Salvador, purportedly to protect that country’s constitution.

    Which raises an interesting question, where is Dan Miller now? I’d like to hear his take on these developments.

    Dan Miller, come out of hiding and speak out!

  • Costello

    Great piece. Will be checking out your links. Hope it’s not to presumptuous to augment it but one important element to help the people is stay engaged. A revolution like these may have taken place in Iran if the world had stayed engaged after the election upheaval instead of moving onto the next fad.

  • Yes, Roger, I recommend everyone install Tor for personal use as well as to increase the bandwidth to help others. Have a look at the 1st link (in my first sentence) which describes what Tor is and does.

  • Hey Clav,

    I got Minnie as my picture. Did you put here there? lol I love it!

  • BTW, do you suggest for some of us install the software? It’s almost axiomatic that the surveillance activity by the democracy-friendly US government – that’s a joke! – even under Obama are certain to intensify in light of the unfolding developments.

  • Thanks, Roger. 🙂

  • Great show, Cindy. I see you’ve been busy.