[Air-L] Before Iran, Tunisia and Egypt, the Soviet coup attempt
lpress at csudh.edu
Wed Feb 2 05:30:56 PST 2011
> My organization supplied the models to the Usenet in Moscon from 1989 to
What sort of models do you refer to?
> We were on the ground at a conference in Prague when that coup
> attempt occurred.
By coincidence, I had just the week before helped organize and
participated in a conference on HCI. The Relcom folks were not at that
conference, but I was able to take time to meet them, see the office and
go to a very nice party with them :-). When the coup attempt occurred
the next week, I was back in the US, but in a perfect position to relay
traffic from the US to them and from them to the US. The most "famous"
thing that came out was Yeltsin's speech while standing on a tank in
front of the White House.
> We were in constant contact with our folks in Moscow who was busy
> organizing the events without interference.
Do you have any of that traffic stored away? If so, could we get it for
the archive at SUNY?
> The new media is always under the radar of the old regime.
It sure was in that case. Within a few hours, they were operating on
laptops out of their homes, so it would have been hard to stop even if
they had been visible. They were using dial-ip links in those days.
> Our new media have given us the illusion of freedom and openness while
> actually giving the dictators a free hand to track and identify the
> opposition leadership and all their friends.
It is surely a two-edged sword. I just wrote a report on the Internet
in Cuba, and devoted a section to pointing out that the Internet not
only poses a "dictator's dilemma," but can be a valuable tool for a
dictator (or terrorist).
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