[Ryan Lackey in Iraq] Wiring the War Zone

Eric Cordian emc at artifact.psychedelic.net
Thu Aug 25 11:29:37 PDT 2005

Peter Trei writes:

>> Ryan Lackey needs to star in an Ayman al-Zawahri produced 
>> video, making short-lived gurgling and whistling noises.

>> Making a fast buck off an illegal war of aggression 
>> is a far cry from running a secure data repository 
>> on an oil platform.

> Eric, I think you could nuance this a bit.

My first comment was more a parody of Pat Robertson's ridiculous call for 
the US to murder the President of Venezuela.  I'm sure the State 
Department supports my right, as a private citizen, to say silly things 
just like Pat.

While I don't wish Ryan any misfortune, I have some difficulty seeing how 
taking cash from Big Brother to create modern digital infrastructure that 
creates a more comfortable life for Big Brother's forces, is actually a 
cunning scheme to undermine morale in the unecessary, unjust, outrageous, 
and illegal occupation of Iraq.

> Ryan isn't supporting Bush's little war - the military
> has plenty of comm channels for C&C which Ryan wouldn't be 
> allowed near.

He's taking cash to provide aid and comfort for members of the military, 
so that they may chat with their wives and girlfriends, access really good 
porn, socialize online, play games, blog, video conference, and otherwise 
recreate, activities which are undoubtedly not encouraged on the C&C comm 

> What he's doing is supplying US soldiers with an independent,
> uncensored and unreviewed channel through which they can find
> out outside views of the war, information which their superiors
> won't pass down to them, and a means by which they can
> pass back their own views and opinions. Frankly, I'm suprised
> the brass are letting him do it.

US soldiers are so brainwashed by the military whispering in their ear 
"you're fighting for their right to protest" every time they encounter 
outside views of the war, that they view themselves as beleagured noble 
warriors safeguarding the free speech rights of unworthy unwashed 
unpatriotic hippies who don't know what they're talking about, and tend to 
interpret criticism of the war through that filter.

Joining the military is not an intelligence test, and the troops, at least 
at the leafy parts of the command tree, are generally not talented 
critical thinkers with long term political memories.

So I think the "aid and comfort to the illegal occupation" aspects of 
Ryan's work must surely outweigh the "opposing points of view" aspects. If 
it didn't, would he even be allowed to do it?  1% of propaganda is lying. 
99% of propaganda is context.  The military controls the soldiers' context 
in which outside views are interpreted.  Net access hardly threatens their 
loyalty to the cause.

The Iraqi people do not wish US occupation of their homeland, and given 
that this was an unprovoked war of aggression, that means that occupying 
troops, mercenaries from private military corporations, military 
contractors, and Ryan Lackey, are there illegitimately.

> How do you think the prison abuse photos got back to the US 
> media?

If I remember correctly, they were souvenir photos taken by service 
members, sent back to their families, and accidently posted with world 
access on what the family members thought was a private online album.

They were noticed by the press, and the effluent hit the fan.

> Would you rather the soldiers rely on Stars & Stripes for info
> on the changing situation back home?

> If anything, what Ryan's doing advances the so-called
> 'cypherpunk agenda' more than anything being done at the
> ideologicaly pure but practically insignificant Sealand.

I think that's an oversimplification.  It's not impossible that after the 
HavenCo fiasco, Ryan has given up on the Cypherpunk Agenda, and is 
currently selling his services for cash and no questions asked.

In any case, I invite Ryan, if he can take a few minutes from hauling 
those suitcases of cash to the bank in Dubai, to post to the list, and 
clarify exactly what he is trying to do.

He did say at the end of the piece, that he looked forward to the military 
opening up additional new markets for him, I assume in places like Iran 
and the other four as-yet-uninvaded countries on the Neocons' list of 

That seems to say "mercenary" more loudly than it says "Cypherpunk," so I 
certainly look forward to more information on the subject.

Eric Michael Cordian 0+
O:.T:.O:. Mathematical Munitions Division
"Do What Thou Wilt Shall Be The Whole Of The Law"

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