Archive for the vs. Google Category

“The wolf and the lamb” – US NSA spying unravels cyber accusations against China [People’s Daily]

Posted in Anti-China propaganda exposure, China, China-bashing, China-US relations, Hillary Clinton, Obama, US imperialism, USA, vs. Google on August 10, 2013 by Zuo Shou / 左手

By Xu Peixi (China.org.cn)

July 29, 2013

In Aesop’s fable about the wolf and the lamb, the wolf wants to eat the lamb yet does not want to convey an unreasonable or greedy self-image. Keeping this in the back of its head, the wolf invents a series of excuses ranging from “you muddle the water from which I am drinking,” to “you insulted me last year” and “you feed on my pasture.” Nonetheless, the lamb is able to refute every single one of these accusations. These refutations range from “I cannot be the cause for the water being muddy because it runs down from you to me” to “I have not yet tasted grass.” The wolf gobbles up the lamb anyway. The moral of this story? A tyrant will use any excuse to do evil.

To the larger Chinese public, the U.S.-China row over cyber security and whistleblower Edward Snowden seemingly reproduces the narratives contained in the fable.

On the American side, Google accused the Chinese government of accessing “the accounts of dozens of U.S.-, China- and Europe-based Gmail users” and with that left the Chinese market. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned against the risks of investing in “countries with aggressive censorship and surveillance policies.” American information security firm Mandiant reported that “140 companies have been hacked … and hacking groups from China were responsible for most of the attacks.” American Attorney General Eric Holder announced a plan to “fight the quickly growing threat from cyber spies.” National Security Advisor Thomas Donilon was concerned about “cyber intrusions emanating from China on an unprecedented scale” and warned that “the international community cannot afford to tolerate such activity from any country.” Finally then, President Obama pushed the hard ball game to new heights by charging the Chinese government with endorsing espionage activities, and consequently called for U.S. Congress to take action in “protecting people’s privacy and civil liberties.”

From the Chinese side then, some claimed that the U.S. wolf controlled most of the world’s Internet resources and was unreasonable in voicing such allegations against the Chinese lamb. Moreover, China said that China itself was in fact the most vulnerable target and biggest victim of hacking activities emanating from the U.S. Former Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi responded that “the Chinese government opposes hacking activities,” “anyone who tries to fabricate or piece together a sensational story to serve their political motives will not be able to blacken the name of others or whitewash oneself,” and “what cyber space needs is not war, but rules and cooperation.” Newly installed Prime Minster Li Keqiang simply dismissed American accusations as being a “presumption of guilt.” Chinese President Xi Jinping called for “conducting good-faith cooperation” as to “remove misgivings and make information security and cyber security a positive area of cooperation between China and the U.S…”

Excerpted; full article link: http://english.people.com.cn/90777/8344375.html

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Internet Freedom vs NSA Dragnet [Hidden Harmonies blog]

Posted in Anti-China propaganda exposure, Capitalist media double standard, China, China-bashing, Hillary Clinton, Historical myths of the US, Intenet control policy / "Great Firewall", National Security Agency / NSA, NSA, Obama, US Government Cover-up, US imperialism, USA, vs. Google on July 20, 2013 by Zuo Shou / 左手

July 5, 2013

by YinYang

Have you ever wondered how a map would look like if it showed Internet freedom versus the NSA dragnet recently revealed by Edward Snowden? Well, it would look like the following map. Click to have a look first and then come back to this post.
Facebook-Map – adjusted for population density (click to enlarge)

[Map here: http://blog.hiddenharmonies.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Facebook-Map-adjusted-for-population-density.jpg%5D

It shows Facebook users versus regional population density. In black are users who use Facebook while red users do not.

For a moment, think Facebook in the map represents the combination of Google, Twitter, Microsoft, and other Internet service companies based out of the U.S.. Recall former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s speech about Internet Freedom? According to her, those users colored in black has [sic] freedom. According to her, the more black the better.

Now, think about the colors with PRISM in mind. And, don’t forget, Google, Facebook, and etc colludes with programs such as PRISM by making their user’s email and activities readily available. Of course, black then represents NSA dragnet while red actually represents freedom. This is why Edward Snowden is so quickly labeled a ‘traitor’ in the United States, because his revelations, while breaking American law, completely undermined speeches like Clinton’s, including President Obama’s lip-service to the same. Our world can be so backwards, and it’s amazingly thinly veiled, isn’t it?

With NSA hacking into the red (Pacnet, Asia’s backbone, and likely other backbones of the global Internet), much of the red is already black isn’t it? Some may genuinely believe this dragnet is actually benign and a force for good. Perhaps. However, if they do, I ask that they do this simple experiment: imagine the red countries now doing NSA’s PRISM-scale spying on the black colored citizens.

If the red spied on the black at the NSA scale, what then should the recourse be? What do we do about true Internet freedom? One thing for sure, I doubt an Internet “freedom” speech will be given any time soon.

Article link: http://blog.hiddenharmonies.org/2013/07/internet-freedom-vs-nsa-dragnet/#more-19073

Whistleblower pulls US into confidence crisis [People’s Daily]

Posted in Anti-China propaganda exposure, China, China-bashing, CIA, Encirclement of China, FBI, National Security Agency / NSA, NSA, US Government Cover-up, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War, vs. Google on June 18, 2013 by Zuo Shou / 左手

(Chinadaily.com.cn)
June 14, 2013

US whistleblower Edward Snowden has disclosed that the US government had been hacking into computers in Hong Kong and on the Chinese mainland since 2009, sparking extensive discussions about the US cyber policy and its long-held accusation against China.

The 29-year-old defense contractor revealed two classified National Security Agency (NSA) surveillance programs, one collecting US phone records and the other mining Internet data.

According to the Guardian and the Washington Post, the NSA and the FBI had been secretly tapping directly into the central servers of nine US Internet companies, extracting audio, video, photographs, e-mails, documents and connection logs that enable analysts to track a person’s movements and contacts over time.

Snowden believed there had been more than 61,000 NSA hacking operations globally, with hundreds of targets in Hong Kong and on the mainland. Among the targets were the Chinese University of Hong Kong and public officials, businesses and students in the city, and the NSA also hacked mainland targets, according to the South China Morning Post.

“We hack network backbones – like huge Internet routers, basically – that give us access to the communications of hundreds of thousands of computers without having to hack every single one,” Snowden said.

In recent years, the United States has accused China of hacking suspected US secrets, with China repeatedly saying that China is a victim of the worst cyber attacks. As Snowden said, the disclosure exposed “the hypocrisy of the US government when it claims that it does not target civilian infrastructure.”

The scale and scope of surveillance over civilian infrastructure, particularly targets in China, took many by surprise.

“For months, Washington has been accusing China of cyber espionage, but it turns out that the biggest threat to the pursuit of individual freedom and privacy in the US is the unbridled power of the government,” Li Haidong, from China Foreign Affairs University, said Thursday.

A user named “orsonzg” wrote on China Daily’s website that the US surveillance against China should be considered from the fact that “The US moved 60% of their navy to the Asia Pacific solely to contain China, this hostile act of aggression seems like a prelude to war in my opinion.”

The incident “seriously discredits” the US over previous claims about human rights, privacy and due process, and “is potentially a massive confidence crisis,” Lee Kai-Fu, former head of Google Inc’s China division, said in a phone interview with Bloomberg.

Internationally, the European Union’s chief justice official has written to the US attorney general demanding an explanation for the collection of foreign nationals’ data through its spy program. News media also reported that Russia may grant political asylum to the former technical assistant at the Central Intelligence Agency.

Article link: http://english.people.com.cn/90777/8285084.html

“Whistleblower welcome in China” – Opinion [China.org.cn]

Posted in China, Hillary Clinton, Hong Kong, Julian Assange, National Security Agency / NSA, NSA, Obama, U.K., US Government Cover-up, US imperialism, USA, vs. Google, Wikileaks on June 14, 2013 by Zuo Shou / 左手

– Opinion articles reflect the views of their authors, not necessarily those of China.org.cn. –

By Xu Peixi

June 14, 2013

Last week, a bright idealistic young man named Edward Snowden almost single-handedly opened the lid on the U.S. National Security Agency’s PRISM program, a program which marks the bleakest moment yet in the history of the Internet due to its scope, exact country of origin and implications.

In terms of scope, major transnational service providers ranging from Google to Apple are involved in allowing the NSA to access their customers’ data for the purposes of “surveillance.” Nearly all types of services ranging from email to VoIP have come within the program’s scope and it originates in a country which dominates the world’s Internet resources – a fact which is acknowledged in the information leaked by Snowden clearly states: “Much of the world’s communications flow through the U.S.” and the information is accessible. The case indicates that through outsourcing and contracting, Big Brother is breaching the fundamental rights of citizens by getting unfettered access to their most personal communications.

As the case unfolds, there are many things to worry about. How do we make sense of the fact that the market and the state colluded in the abuse of private information via what represents the backbone of many modern day infrastructures? How do we rationalize the character of Snowden and his fellow whistleblowers? How do we understand the one-sided cyber attack accusations the U.S. has poured upon China in the past few months? To what degree have foreign users of these Internet services fallen victim to this project? Among all these suspicions, let us clarify two types of American personality.

First of all, Snowden’s case offers us a rare chance to reexamine the integrity of American politicians and the management of American-dominant Internet companies, and it appears that while many of these individuals verbally attack other nations and people in the name of freedom and democracy, they ignore America’s worsening internal situation. In an eloquent speech on Internet freedom, former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that if Internet companies can’t act as “responsible stewards of their own personal information,” then they would lose customers and their survival would be threatened. In the same speech, she also urged U.S. media companies to take a proactive role in challenging foreign governments’ demands for censorship and surveillance.

Clinton was certainly under the impression that her own government was above reproach on these matters, when every piece of evidence, whether in hindsight or not, suggests the opposite. We must also remember that Clinton’s Internet freedom speech was addressing Google’s grand withdrawal [sic] from China; so, following the logical thread of her speech, it is surely now time for Google to take responsibility for leaking data and information to the NSA and withdraw from the U.S. market. David Drummond, Google’s senior vice president and chief legal officer, justified Google’s withdrawal from China by citing state “surveillance” and the “fact” that the Gmail accounts of dozens of human rights activists were being “routinely accessed by third parties”. If Google wants to be consistent with its past pronouncements, the PRISM program gives the Internet giant much more cause for action.

We can see, therefore, that when American politicians and businessmen make accusatory remarks, their eyes are firmly fixed on foreign countries and they turn a blind eye to their own misdeeds. This clearly calls into question the integrity of these rich, powerful and influential figures and gives the definite impression that the U.S. bases its own legitimacy not on good domestic governance but on stigmatizing foreign practices.

Perhaps the most confusing issue revolves around the hypocrisy of those who preach about Internet freedom abroad while they stifle it at home. The Fudan University students who listened intently to President Obama’s speech about Internet freedom and censorship at a town hall-style meeting in Shanghai in 2009 certainly took his remarks seriously. How must they be feeling now that it is obvious that President Obama himself does not believe his own Internet rhetoric? In the same vein, many like-minded young Chinese once presented flowers to Google’s Beijing headquarters to pay tribute to its “brave” and outspoken challenge to perceived state surveillance by the Chinese government. How must they be feeling in light of Google’s involvement in PRISM and with the knowledge that Google’s action against China is only part of its commercial strategy? An increasing number of Chinese people will come to understand that the democratization of domestic Chinese media is entirely different from that which happens abroad.

Second, let us look at another kind of American personality. How can we understand and explain Snowden and similar figures? These young idealists, including the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein who helped to bring down President Nixon in the Watergate affair, Wiki leaks’ Julian Assange and former American soldier Bradley Manning, among others, can be categorized as the “bright feathers” of our time, to borrow some words from the popular American movie The Shawshank Redemption. Plus, they all embody the courage to fight against the system, which the film also celebrates. The 25-year old Manning is now a prisoner, having been arrested in May 2010 in Iraq on suspicion of having passed classified material to WikiLeaks. Assange has been confined in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for nearly a year. Snowden is on the run in Hong Kong. While human rights activists from developing countries (defined by Western apparatus for sure) are often blessed with a choice of hiding places, we are now seeing the dilemma of Western dissidents. For this reason China, despite the fact that it does not have a good reputation as far as Internet governance is concerned, should move boldly and grant Snowden asylum.

After all, what the American and British authorities have done to figures such as Snowden represents a challenge to the common sense of the global public. These people are too brilliant to be caged…For the surfacing evils that have been done and continue to be committed by the state-market alliance in the digital age, Snowden and those like him represent the hope and possibility that counter measures exist to combat these evils. Unfortunately, those who proclaim to the world “don’t be evil” are themselves willing cooperators in the whole game and their profit-driven nature has led them to play a major role in this evil. If intelligence work can be contracted or outsourced this way, anything can.

This is the reason why we appreciate and salute the efforts of Snowden et al, who have gambled their career, family, personal freedom, and even their life to let the global public know what the most powerful force in the world is doing with perhaps the central infrastructure of our age; to make the public aware that this force is acting in an unconstitutional manner and entirely contrary to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. To further understand the likes of Snowden, let us end with a narrative by the character Red from the Shawshank Redemption as he rationalizes the escape of his friend Andy: “Some birds are not meant to be caged. Their feathers are just too bright. And when they fly away, the part of you that knows it was a sin to lock them up does rejoice.”

The author is a columnist with China.org.cn. For more information please visit: http://china.org.cn/opinion/xupeixi.htm

Article link: http://www.china.org.cn/opinion/2013-06/14/content_29120530_2.htm

“US looking for excuses for ‘cyber army’ expansion” – New York Times alleges hacking by China [People’s Daily]

Posted in Anti-China media bias, Anti-China propaganda exposure, Capitalist media double standard, China, Corporate Media Critique, Media smear campaign, New York Times lie, Protectionist Trade War with China, Psychological warfare, Sinophobia, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War, vs. Google, Yellow Peril myth on February 5, 2013 by Zuo Shou / 左手

February 05, 2013

The United States is once again claiming to have been attacked by Chinese hackers. This time, the alleged “victim” is Dow Jones & Company, the publisher of the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.
  
In recent years, there have been quite many “victims” that claimed to have been attacked by “Chinese hackers”: Google, arms dealers, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, NASA… In November last year, subordinate departments of the U.S. Congress even issued an annual report saying China has become the Internet world’s most threatening country.
  
However, while the United States kept on “flattering” the “Chinese hackers” in such manner, it always seemed vague on presenting evidence. This time, the New York Times and Dow Jones & Company are still making the accusations based on similar grounds as usual – that the IP address of the attacking source is from China.
  
People with a little understanding of network knowledge would know that attacks of hackers are transnational and hidden in nature, and therefore the IP address cannot be taken as sufficient evidence to confirm the source of the hackers.
 
National security has become the U.S.’ preferred “fig leaf” to cover the implementation of trade protection and economic sanctions, the ultimate excuse for it to exaggerate the Chinese threat theory on a global scale.

Clearly, by hyping “Chinese hackers”, it can please the people at home, attract political attention, as well as impose more technical restrictions on China.

However, it is a noteworthy fact that, while rendering the “China’s Internet threats”, the United States is also rapidly expanding its network security forces. Just a few days before Dow Jones & Company accused China, media disclosed the news that the United States was going to expand its network security force by five-fold.

There are throngs of commercial spies and network hackers on the Internet, and any national department or enterprise is possible to suffer attacks. Relevant data show that China is one of the countries that suffer most severe cyber attacks in the world. Although from the technical view, a considerable number of attacks are from the U.S. network, China has never made hasty inference or reckless conclusion about the attacking source.

As a major power of the Internet, China explicitly prohibits hacker attacks in the law [sic], severely cracks down on online hacking, and has been participating in global exchanges and cooperation in the field of network security in a constructive manner. In the age of globalized and information-based economy, information security has become a global issue. International cooperation is indispensable in countering hackers. Groundless slander against other countries and the implementation of double standards on Internet governance is not the proper behavior of a responsible big country.

Read the Chinese version at: 美国为“网军”扩编找借口, [see original article for that link]
Source: People’s Daily Overseas Edition, Author: Zhang Yixuan

Article link: http://english.people.com.cn/102774/8122262.html

“Google divides South China Sea” – Is Google’s map revision revenge on China’s cyber-sovereignty? [Strategic Culture Foundation]

Posted in China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, US imperialism, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War, Vietnam, vs. Google on June 9, 2012 by Zuo Shou / 左手

Voice of Russia

May 21, 2012

Google has settled its conflict with Vietnam by correcting a mistake made by its map service and ‘returning’ the Spratly Archipelago and the Paracel Islands to Vietnam. Earlier, those areas were not assigned to Vietnam in Google maps.

It required diplomatic interference to sort out this error. In Vietnam’s opinion, Google committed cartographical aggression by taking those islands away from Vietnam and thus violating Vietnam’s territorial integrity. On the other hand, it still remains to be seen how China, the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei…will take Google’s noble [sic] gesture because they also consider those islands part of their territories.

Google Maps usually avoids getting mixed up in territorial disputes. Meanwhile, analyst Alexey Voskresensky from the Russia-China Centre of the Institute of the Far East at the Russian Academy of Sciences does not rule out that this situation is politically charged.

“Google had problems in China because China introduced partial censorship of the Internet, which strongly affected Google’s interests. To a certain degree, this situation could be considered Goggle’s revenge. It turns out that Google has aggravated tension in connection with this territorial dispute in the South China Sea.”

Another fact is also interesting . After Vietnam and Google came to an amicable agreement, the US Federal Court of Appeals confirmed that information about cooperation between the National Intelligence Agency [sic – CIA? NSA?] and Google will remain secret. However, the Court responded to human rights activists’ claim to disclose the nature of the links between Google and the National Intelligence Agency. Another version is that Google was protecting someone’s interests in the territorial dispute about the islands in the South China Sea. It sounds likely because US Defense Minister Leon Panetta recently voiced the US position. He personally promised the Philippine Foreign Minister Alberto del Rosario military aid in case of a conflict between Manila and Beijing regarding the Scarborough Shoal, or Huangyan Island, in the South China Sea. Director of the Centre of Strategic Research of China at the Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia Alexey Maslov believes that Washington is pursuing geopolitical aims.

“The US is trying to reinforce the Philippines in this dispute. Its main aim is to weaken China’s position in Asia, so as to prevent China from becoming the sole leader. Hard to say how reasonable this aim is. For many countries today, including Vietnam, the Philippines, Brunei and Indonesia, China is more than Asia’s leader, it is a country which determines the new style of the Asian economy. The US is trying to interfere in Asia’s economic, social and political life.”

At present, fears are growing in the Philippines that China is preparing for a war for the South China Sea. Beijing is flatly denying these charges. At the same time, on Wednesday Hanoi remonstrated against Beijing’s ban on fishing in some areas of the South China Sea. China explained this by the season factor. Evidently, after settling the map conflict with Google, Vietnam has run against the Great Wall of China [sic]. A few days ago, in connection with the worsened confrontation with Manila, Beijing warned that no one should hope to annex even an inch of Chinese land. This means that the tiff between Vietnam and Google is far from over yet.

Article link: http://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2012/05/21/google-divides-south-china-sea.html

US media hypes ‘cyber Cold War’ [People’s Daily]

Posted in Capitalist media double standard, China, China-bashing, Corporate Media Critique, Journalism, Psychological warfare, Russia, Sinophobia, USA, USA 21st Century Cold War, vs. Google on January 1, 2012 by Zuo Shou / 左手

by Wang Tian

Dec. 20, 2011

Edited and translated by People’s Daily Online

A Dec. 14 report by Bloomberg claimed that the networks of at least 760 companies, research universities, Internet service providers and government agencies in the United States have been hit by the same elite group of China-based cyber spies over the last decade.

The companies range from some of the largest corporations such as Google and Intel to niche innovators in sectors like aerospace, semiconductors, pharmaceuticals and biotechnology, according to intelligence data obtained by Bloomberg News.

The report said that China-based hackers might have used the networks of iBahn, a U.S.-based provider of Internet services to hotels, as a launching pad into corporate networks that are connected to it, in order to steal company secrets. Bloomberg called it the “Cyber Cold War” in the sensational report.

* US accusations lack evidence *

The Associated Press said in a recent report that most of the China-based cyber attacks stealing critical data from U.S. companies and government agencies were committed by 12 different hacker groups, largely “backed or directed by” the Chinese government, according to U.S. cyber security experts.

The Associated Press added that the “aggressive but stealthy attacks” by China-based hackers have stolen billions of dollars in U.S. intellectual property and data, and U.S. officials at times can tell where the hackers are and even who they may be according to certain “distinct signatures” of their attacks.

The article said U.S. intelligence officials alleged cyber attacks from China were escalating, but “it was difficult to provide” relevant “evidence.” The article also said U.S. government officials were reluctant to link these cyber attacks with the Chinese government directly, but privately officials and experts generally expressed that they believed the hackers were related to the Chinese government or military. Some American cyber-security experts criticized the U.S. government’s failure to put enough pressure on China to force it to trace hackers.

U.S. National Counterintelligence Executive Office opened a report submitted to Congress titled “Foreign Spies Stealing U.S. Economic Secrets in Cyberspace” on Nov. 3, alleging by name that China and Russia had stolen a lot of value U.S. economic secretes via the internet in the past two years, which has created “increasingly serious and persistent threat” to U.S. economic security.

China and Russia were “the most ambitious collectors” of U.S. economic information and technology, mainly targeting the U.S. economy’s key sectors, such as information and military technology, according to the report.

The report particularly alleged that China was “the world’s most active and most lasting economic espionage criminal” and “U.S. private companies and cyber-security experts have once reported computer network intrusion attacks from China” but “cannot confirm who should be responsible for that.”

The report predicted that what may be “stolen” in the future would possibly be information and communication technology; business information on scarce natural resource suppliers or important business information in U.S. enterprise and government negotiations; and military technology, particularly technologies in marine systems, unmanned aerial vehicles and other aerospace, civil or multi-purpose technology in clean energy and pharmaceutical sectors.

China also victim of overseas hacker attacks

Some people abroad are fond of making rumors about cyber espionage, but what they say is groundless, a spokesman with China’s foreign ministry said in response to the accusation.

The Chinese government opposes and forbids any kind of hacker attacks. It is expressly stipulated in China’s laws that any related network crime would be investigated for criminal responsibilities in accordance with the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China.

China’s vulnerable network is a victim of major overseas hacker attacks and is frequently subject to illegal hacking and attacks from certain countries. Ensuring information and network security is a common interest for all of the countries. China is committed to guarding information and network security together with the international community via mutually beneficial cooperation on an equal footing.

The spokesman also pointed out that there is another problem we should pay more attention to, i.e. certain countries are keen on improving their capabilities in the so-called cyber armament race. It has become a top priority for the international community to find a way to prevent the information and network space from turning into a new battleground, but to guard its peace and make it be truly used to promote social economic development and human welfare. The International Code on Information Security jointly proposed by China, Russia and other countries, aims to drive the international community to establish a peaceful, safe, fair and open information and network space.

Article link: http://english.people.com.cn/90780/7681649.html