Saturday, September 1, 2007

U.S. Military Still Censoring Liberal/Progressive Websites

ThinkProgress is now banned from the U.S. military network in Baghdad. ...

The ban began sometime shortly after Aug. 22, when Ret. Maj. Gen. John Batiste was our guest blogger on ThinkProgress. He posted an op-ed that was strongly critical of the President’s policies and advocated a “responsible and deliberate redeployment from Iraq.” ...
This is nothing new. I understand the military may see the need to censor, delay, withhold, or block correspondence and communications they feel could be harmful to morale, mission, strategy, etc, and they likely have every right to do so, but do pray tell me why it would choose to only block lefty/liberal/progressive-leaning sites. Here are several other examples:
DailyKos was blocked.
So was Atrios.
So was TalkingPointsMemo, for crying out loud - and they’re all policy and minimal invective over there!
On the other hand, Free Republic and Little Green Footballs came through just fine, thank you very much.

I had a few minutes today and thought I’d look and see what else was banned on the Marine web here. I think the results speak for themselves:
Wonkette “Forbidden, this page ( is categorized as: Forum/Bulletin Boards, Politics/Opinion.”
Bill O Reilly ( OK
Air America ( “Forbidden, this page ( is categorized as: Internet Radio/TV, Politics/Opinion.”
Rush Limbaugh ( OK
ABC News The Note OK
Website of the Al Franken Show ( “Forbidden, this page ( is categorized as: Internet Radio/TV, Politics/Opinion.”
G. Gordon Liddy Show ( OK
Don & Mike Show ( “Forbidden, this page ( is categorized as: Profanity, Entertainment/Recreation/Hobbies.”

Another Marine stationed in Iraq has sent us a screenshot of what happens when you need some hot news on Macaca and Foley:
forbidden, this page ( is categorized as (Personal Pages) ALL SITES YOU VISIT ARE LOGGED AND FILED.
Nice little threat at the end, too. Asswipes.
This Marine had something to say about the practice of the military's blocking of only what it sees as left-leaning sites:
I am currently stationed in Al Taqaddam, Iraq with the Marines…you’ve done a short piece about this before, but this is getting ridiculous.

It seems that every non-conservative politics website has been blocked by our firewall guys…including your site. The reason it is blocked is because it is a “personal page.” Which means they don’t have a reason to block it … but they want to block it, so they do. This was done recently, just in time for mid-term elections. As I said, it was not only your website, I have gone through lists of liberal sites and most of them are blocked. I’ve also taken the time to go to some conservative sites….none of which are blocked.

I don’t have the words to describe how I feel. They have sent me to this desert three times…each time saying that we are defending freedom…which is BS and everyone knows it. And on top of that they have taken away many of the freedoms that we are supposedly fighting for…
They are trying to warp servicemembers' political perspectives through rose colored internet access. Downright Orwellian. Just one more reason I call this Bush's 'Potemkin' War.