It’s been a while since the Islamic world made an attempt to ban access to websites from the Western world. Iran might set another precedent after as it blocked access to Google and Gmail services.
It looks like the Muslim world is already taking action to prevent a situation such as the riots that were prompted by the anti-Muhammad film. Iran has decided to block users’ access to Google and Gmail in a first attempt to punish the U.S. company for not removing the anti-Islamic film.
The Iranian government didn’t decline that it had in fact blocked access to Google and Gmail. Governmental officials declared that they have restricted the Google and Gmail because of the well known video that insulted the Muslim world. They said that the movie that mocks the Islamic prophet Mohamed has been posted on Google’s video sharing service YouTube and this is the main reason why they have blocked access to Google’s services.
“The current trouble with the anti-Islamic film is helping the government with this propaganda,” said Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Twitter is on a frenzy thanks to Iranian internet users who have reported that access to Google and Gmail services isn’t available anymore. Twitter user @0xal reported yesterday evening that “Gmail and Google had been restricted”. Apparently there is still a way to access those two services using a VPN or a proxy. “Both Gmail and google.com are blocked since last night, but Gmail is not blocked in some mobile operators,” said the user in another Twitter message.
But some say the recent Iranian restriction of Google and Gmail services is just an alibi for an older plan to create an “Islamic intranet” which would basically isolate users in a confined internet. Users would not have access to other websites than those selected by the Iranian government.
Whereas this looks like an idea that would have Western users outraged, Iranians believe a protective intranet system is a good idea. “It is OK, because people should not have access to these insulting films.” said BBC reader, Amir from Karaj.
A silent intelligence war has been going on for a while between the US and Iran. Both are accusing each other for launching cyber attacks. Recently Iran accused the U.S. for trying to hack into their uranium facilities, whereas U.S. accused the government in Tehran to have ordered cyber attacks against American banks.