Bringing to Light a Fact About Jeff Bezos’ Amazon.com Blocking of the WikiLeaks WebsiteLeave a comment
August 14, 2013 by Alfred
Bringing to Light a Fact About Jeff Bezos’ Amazon.com Inappropriate Behavior as a Result of Politically Undue Pressure
While the Washington Post naturally dedicated ample background coverage on Jeff Bezos and his company Amazon.com, light should have also been duly focused on the fact that Amazon.com in December of 2010 decided to shut down the WikiLeaks website after being asked to do so by former Senator Joe Lieberman, something which blocked Americans from making donations to said website.
Whether one considers Julian Assange a reporter for whistleblowers or not, the WikiLeaks organization exposes facts and wrongdoing which the public has a right to be aware of and their exposure is generally First Amendment protected speech and therefore a corporation such as Amazon.com, which runs massive global servers, should not block it to yield to the undue influence of politicians with their own agendas.
As a result of this website blockage, WikiLeaks lost a huge number of donations until January of 2011 when the United States government formally found that there is no lawful reason to erect a U.S. financial embargo against it, as Julian Assange declared recently during an interview to Amy Goodman, of the Democracy Now program.
This incident does not reflect well on the owner of Amazon.com, Jeff Bezos, particularly as he now owns The Washington Post, since in effect this incident reveals a form of unwarranted censorship of protected speech.
The following paragraph from The Economist, most resonates with the way I feel nowadays, particularly since 9/11, when we are seeing the government shroud more and more in a veil of secrecy using the so-called “national security” threat as some kind of pretext to block what often constitutes politicized information or politically embarrassing information or outright wrongdoing by politicians, something which the public has a right to be informed about, lest the fostering of this climate of silence in the presence of deceit and greed will reach a level of potentially becoming toxic to our constitutionally protected democracy.
So, what follows is the aptly expressed relevant portion in The Economist.
“… we all understand that the work of even the most decent governments is made more difficult when they cannot be sure their communications will be read by those for whom they were not intended. That said, there is no reason to assume that the United States government is always up to good. To get at the value of WikiLeaks, it is important to distinguish between the government—the temporary, elected authors of national policy—and the state—the permanent bureaucratic and military apparatus superficially but not fully controlled by the reigning government. The careerists scattered about the world in America’s intelligence agencies, military, and consular offices largely operate behind a veil of secrecy executing policy which is itself largely secret. American citizens mostly have no idea what they are doing, or whether what they are doing is working out well. The actually-existing structure and strategy of the American empire remains a near-total mystery to those who foot the bill and whose children fight its wars. And that is the way the elite of America’s unelected permanent state, perhaps the most powerful class of people on Earth, like it. “
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