Who Cut the Cables? An ABC Investigation


Via Drudge, a story from Australian public broadcaster ABC on those mass Internet outages in the Middle East and India. According to the crack reporting of ABC correspondent Simon Lauder, some online sleuths see a conspiracy so immense, so sophisticated, that it could only have emanated from Langley:

Is information warfare to blame for the damage to underwater internet cables that has interrupted internet service to millions of people in India and Egypt, or is it just a series of accidents? When two cables in the Mediterranean were severed last week, it was put down to a mishap with a stray anchor. Now a third cable has been cut, this time near Dubai. That, along with new evidence that ships' anchors are not to blame, has sparked theories about more sinister forces that could be at work.

Online columnist Ian Brockwell says the cables may have been cut deliberately in an attempt by the US and Israel to deprive Iran of internet access. Others back up that theory, saying the Pentagon has a secret strategy called 'information warfare'.

Who these "others" are is left unsaid, though one could argue that "information warfare" hardly counts as a "secret strategy." And while it is at least conceivable that the CIA would be stupid enough to cut off Iran's lifeline to an independent media (it is the CIA, after all), ABC's source for this claim, an "Internet columnist" called Ian Brockwell, is of dubious reliability. According to his online bio, Mr. Brockwell's interests include UFOs and climate change, the latter of which he attributes to the perfidy of the former. But here's some free advice for the kids at ABC: Be slightly more skeptical of claims by online columnists whose work can be found on Holocaust denier Ernst Zundel's website, such as Brockwell's crie du coeur against "people fear those who debate the 'Holocaust'?" (Scare quotes around Holocaust in original, naturally).

So why bother criticizing the journalistic standards of Australian public media? To make the point that state-funded media is insulated from market forces and, therefore, produces ridiculous news stories like the one quoted above? Well, no. It's simply an excuse to post the exquisite cover of Brockwell's self-published book, Global Warming: The Final Solution. Eat your heart out, Chip Kidd: