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Persian Letters

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps Warns Against ‘Internet In A Suitcase’ Project

The "Internet in a Suitcase" project
The "Internet in a Suitcase" project
Iranian officials appear to be increasingly worried about the U.S.-funded "Internet in a Suitcase" project that aims to deploy shadow Internet and telecommunication networks in repressive countries.

The project was first reported earlier this month by "The New York Times."

"Sobhe Sadegh," the weekly publication of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), blasts the U.S. initiative in its latest issue, saying Iran should hire  "revolutionary hackers" and create a cyberbase from which to counter it. 

The IRGC publication says Iranian authorities should analyze the move, which according to "Sobhe Sadegh" carries a warning for the Islamic republic. It says the U.S. project is aimed at gathering information about Middle Eastern countries, such as Iran and Syria, and providing "soft" help to subversive and opposition groups.

“Accessing information is the main and most important method used by the enemies of the establishment," it writes. "This issue is of such importance that the enemies of the Islamic republic are ready, in order to access the information  they need, to abuse information and help the spread of false information that is in line with their aims, to invest heavily in this area, and carry out costly projects."

Iranian Intelligence Minister Heydar Moslehi has also reacted to the "Internet in a Suitcase" project, saying the Islamic republic has ways for countering it, without providing details.

Speaking in Tehran on June 29, Moslehi said that since the "sedition" -- the mass protests that followed Iran's disputed June 2009 presidential vote -- the United States, the intelligence services of U.S. allies, and other countries in the region have made "heavy investments" in cyberspace.

"[U.S. President Barack] Obama admitted several times, in Congress and elsewhere, that the cyberwars he has carried out against us have not succeeded. He has admitted defeat. We had foreseen in advance the steps they are taking in cyberspace – for example, the 'Internet in a Suitcase' that they have hyped so much -- and we have ways to counter it," Moslehi said in an interview with Iranian state television.

Iran’s Foreign Ministry has also warned about the effort and says it could lead to a backlash against the United States. Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said on June 14 that Internet-savvy Muslims in the region could strike back against the United States.

-- Golnaz Esfandiari
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Comment Sorting
by: George from: USA
July 19, 2011 14:14
Seams the what represive regiems fear the most is the education, and sources of information of the folk it wants to control.
The internet is one of the biggest threats to these power mad monsters, despite the fact they use it to spread their propaganda, disinformation, and out right lies.

About This Blog

Persian Letters is a blog that offers a window into Iranian politics and society. Written primarily by Golnaz Esfandiari, Persian Letters brings you under-reported stories, insight and analysis, as well as guest Iranian bloggers -- from clerics, anarchists, feminists, Basij members, to bus drivers.

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Seen anything in the Iranian blogosphere that you think Persian Letters should cover? If so, contact Golnaz Esfandiari at esfandiarig@rferl.org