This article is republished courtesy of Andre Oboler and originally appeared on the Jerusalem Post Blogs.
Since its earliest days the “Internet gathering” known as Anonymous has declared “we are legion”. After attacks on PayPal, Amazon, Sony, various banks and US Government websites, as in Roman times, the power of the legion is again feared.
According to some, Anonymous’ latest target is Israel, with a threat to systematically remove Israel from the Internet. The evidence, however, suggests this is far more likely an impersonation. Though only circumstantial, the evidence suggests the possibility of Iranian sponsorship. If so, this would mark the first effort by a state, or perhaps its proxies, to infiltrate and manipulate Anonymous into pursuing a government’s agenda. If that effort backfires, I for one wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end.
The allegations of an attack appear to emanate from a YouTube Video title “Anonymous Message to the State of Israel” released by TheAnonPress. In the video the computer generated voice declares “For too long we have tolerated your crimes against humanity and allowed your sins to go unpunished… You are unworthy to exist in your current form”. The anonymous voice goes on to speak of a “crusade against your reign of terror” which will start with a systematic removal of Israel from the Internet.
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While the introduction clip to the video is indeed a work of art, the message shows a fundamental lack of understanding about Anonymous. The blind hate that drips from this video is far more reminiscent of a speech in the United Nations… by President Ahmadinejad. Indeed, the video declares “We will not allow you to attack a sovereign country based upon a campaign of lies”, a reference to Iran and its nuclear weapons program. The video was released in the lead up to the 33rd anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, where Ahmadinejad made an announcement of “big new” Iranian nuclear developments.