"Hacktivism" is growing. In recent months protests have been plastered on the home pages of China's Human Rights Agency, the government of India's Kashmir and nuclear weapons research center sites, and the site of the Croatian state-owned newspaper Vjesnik. Protesters "are discovering what hackers have always knows: Traditional social institutions are more vulnerable in cyberspace than they are in the physical world." (NYT, 10/31/98, p. A5)
Here are more excerpts from the 1998 New York Times article cited above. (full text)
"On Monday, a day after China's human rights agency announced its new Web site, the official view of that nation's human rights record was replaced with an electronic trespasser's manifesto: 'China's people have no rights at all, never mind human rights. How can the United States trade millions and millions of dollars with them and give them most favored trade status when they know what is happening?'"
The Zapatistas, fighting in Chiapas, Mexico, are the first known instance of armed insurrectionists taking their case to the world by publishing announcements over the Internet. In 1998 a group of U.S. supporters of the Zapatistas formed the Electronic Disturbance Theater in order to carry out acts in support of other political objectives. New York University, whose computers' hosted EDT's webpage, recently asked the group to remove its material from the University's server.
"On Nov.22, the group says, it plans to attack the Web site of the School of the Americas, a United States Army training center for foreign miliary personnel, some of whom have been accused of human rights abuses."
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