Conspiracy Nation -- Vol. 6  Num. 41
                    ("Quid coniuratio est?")


By Clark Matthews
[Spotlight, 11/06/95]

Powerful national security insiders have established effective control over the entrance gateways to Internet. Disturbing signs are now emerging that the "information superhighway" has been targeted for systematic surveillance and political dossier building on Americans' opinions.

This ominous news came in the first of a series of articles by investigative journalist Steven Pizzo in Web Review, an online magazine of cyberculture and politics ( published by Songline Studios of San Francisco. Pizzo is the author of Inside Job, a groundbreaking expose' on the massive fraud and theft of insured deposits in 1980s savings and loan debacle.

According to Pizzo, control of Internet "domain name registration" has passed into private hands -- with the potential for serious mischief or worse. "Domain names" are the odd-looking identifying names that are assigned to individual computer systems that compose the Internet (, for example).

Through a complex chain of licensing arrangements and corporate acquisitions detailed in Pizzo's article, this crucial control over Internet domain names has passed from the non-profit National Science Foundation to Network Solutions, Inc. (NSI) of Herndon, Virginia. Last May, amid growing public disbelief of Establishment media reports about the Oklahoma City bombing provocation, NSI was purchased by Scientific Applications International Corporation (SAIC) of San Diego.

SAIC is a $2 billion defense and FBI contractor with a board of directors that reads like a Who's Who of the intelligence community. Board members include Admiral Bobby Ray Inman, the former director of the National Security Agency (NSA) and deputy director of the CIA; Melvin Laird, defense secretary under Richard Nixon; Donald Hicks, former head of research & development for the Pentagon; Donald Kerr, former head of the Los Alamos National Laboratory; and Gen. Maxwell Thurman (ret.), the commander of the U.S. invasion of Panama.

Former members of SAIC's board include Robert Gates, the former CIA director under George Bush; current CIA director John Deutch; Anita Jones, Deutch's former Pentagon procurement officer; and William Perry, the present secretary of defense.

The corporation also has a legion of computer network specialists and an entire division of computer consultants. SAIC currently holds contracts for re-engineering the Pentagon's information systems, automating the FBI's computerized fingerprint identification system, and building a national criminal history information system.

The Internet is a marvel of computer software technology. It was designed to survive a nuclear attack on the United States -- like the Post Office, it's literally smart enough to find a way to get the mail through, even if most of the network is missing.

But control of Internet domain name registration means the ability to remove troublesome -- or outspoken -- computer systems from the network. Potentially, this control also confers the power to insinuate "phantom" domains into the network -- for surveillance purposes, for example -- or for real-time, automatic censorship.

Furthermore, anecdotal evidence gathered by this author suggests that actual "truth control" is taking place on the 'net now. E- mail messages with controversial contents -- including the details of the SAIC takeover of domain names -- have consistently disappeared as they travel across the network. News items concerning the Vincent Foster "suicide" investigation and allegations of NSA bank spying through compromised Inslaw software are being quickly and automatically cancelled {1}. And the cancellations are not by their authors.

-+- Crackdown -+-

With domain names under the control of secret government insiders, it is even theoretically possible that large parts of the Internet could be shut down and silenced at critical times. This could be accomplished by suddenly altering domain name registrations or interposing compromised "domains" at crucial points. These compromised systems could serve as "black holes" at critical times, stopping e-mail and important news from reaching the world -- or the rest of the country.

Exercises in "turning the Internet off" have already taken place in Taiwan and Hong Kong. In Taiwan, the 'net was successfully shut down. All network traffic -- including news, opinions and e- mail sent by computer users -- was successfully "bottled up" on the island and prevented from reaching the world.

In Hong Kong, the Internet wasn't quite strangled, but the British authorities who control that colony managed to throttle free electronic speech with the rest of the world until everything was bottlenecked into a few little-known satellite links.

These are alarming precedents and sure signs that powerful, shadowy forces are preparing to chop at the very roots of America's new Liberty Tree. The secretive people on the board of directors of SAIC are intelligence professionals skilled at manufacturing events -- and then manufacturing public opinion and consent by controlling the truth. Will Internet disinformation, censorship or "shutdowns" signal the next American crisis?

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You may be unable to find The Spotlight at your local library or news dealer. To subscribe, phone 1-800-522-6292 (Maryland 1-301- 951-6292). Note that I have no personal connection to The Spotlight nor am I compensated by them. I also neither necessarily agree nor disagree with either all or parts of the views expressed in The Spotlight.

---------------------------<< Notes >>--------------------------- {1} Some of this information, regarding Foster and allegations of NSA bank spying, etc., is still available via anonymous ftp to ftp pub/users/bigred -- see files beginning "og" as, for example "og003", "og021", etc.

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