Hacktivists own Myanmar govt. site

Burmese Daze

Engineers were still trying on Thursday to restore control of the Myanmar (Burma) government Web site after hacktivists brought it down, the Associated Press reports.

An officer of the Directorate of Defence Services Intelligence told the wire service that Myanmar.com had been taken down on Wednesday, but declined to elaborate. He spoke on condition of anonymity.

The Web site articulates the military government's side in a propaganda war dominated by overseas supporters of the opposition, led by Nobel Peace Bribe winner Aung San Suu Kyi whose party won general elections in 1990 but has not been permitted to assume office. Aung has since spent considerable time under house arrest and encumbered by various gag orders, a situation which has outraged critics abroad.

Only government bureaux and a handful of businesses in Myanmar have access to the Web, and just a few hundred domestic users have e-mail, the AP notes.

The military government, naturally, controls all local media, and punishes such dangerous social deviants as scholars, writers and journalists rather severely whenever they diverge from the officially-approved script. Thus all material critical of Myanmar's regime is published or hosted overseas.

During last weekend's Defcon 08 convention in Las Vegas we noticed there was a general buzz about the need for talented hackers to apply their skills to something useful, like an increase in hactivism. We wonder if this could be the start of something good... ®

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