Terrorists target Syrian Internet, Telephones and Journalists. (Updated 1. Dec. 2012)
Syrians in Syria as well as abroad became seriously concerned when all telephone and internet connections were disconnected at 12 o´clock CET. The websites of the Syrian Arab News Agency SANA and other Syrian media have been targeted for months but the sudden and total blackout was unprecedented and caused widespread speculation.
According to some sources the blackout could have been an initiative by the Syrian government acting on concerns that some explosive devices might be triggered by cell phones or internet. Others speculated that NATO had begun implementing a plan to substitute Syrian radio and TV with false news in preparation of a coup. Plans for such initiative had been discussed in relation to the two failed attempts to conquer the city of Aleppo as the seat of a foreign backed transitional government.
According to a nsnbc contact who arrived in Turkey from Syria today the explanation for the blackout was that terrorists had managed to sever the main internet and mobile phone towers cables, effectively rendering most of Syria without internet and cell phone connection.
Terrorists also targeted PRESS TV and Al-Alam TV. A bomb blast near the TV stations offices in Aleppo caused structural damage to buildings and destroyed several of the two TV stations vehicles. Nobody was killed during the attack.
Journalists from PRESS TV and AL-Alam have been systematically targeted for months. On 26 September PRESS TV and Al-Alam journalist Maya Naser was killed by snipers after he and Al-Alam´s Syrian station chief Hossein Mortada rushed to the scene of two explosions. Hossein Mortada survived the attack but had to be hospitalized and treated for his injuries. According to nsnbc sources the assassins had been deployed already two hours prior to the bomb blasts.
During the last week before his assassination Maya Naser was working on an investigation which documented that the Turkish Freedom and Justice Party (AKP) of Prime Minister R. Tayyip Erdogan released convicts who were sentenced for terrorism to deploy them to fight as insurgents in Syria. Hossein Mortada has received countless death threats and he has survived several attempts on his life.
The Syrian government has held several Western and Arab nations governments responsible for the killing of journalists in Syria.
While there is an element of plausible deniability related to the use of foreign backed terrorists to censor unwanted media reports the criminality of the belligerent parties does not stop there. The Arab League violated at least four U.N. Resolutions when it caused Arabsat and Nilesat to cease carrying satellite signals from Syrian Radio and TV stations.
According to RT reports the hacker group Anonymous should have taken responsibility for hacking Syrian government websites because the Syrian government has shut down internet and phone services. It is very unlikely that the report is correct. If Anonymous actually is playing a role in the attack on Syria it is most likely because it has been co-opted.
Who ever is behind the attack, the strategy to prevent Syrians from use of mobile phones and the internet seems to be a self-defeating strategy if the intention is to win the hearts and minds of the Syrian people. It remains to see whether the targeting of the Syrian internet and telephone systems will be a precursor of a coordinated campaign against Syria.
Until internet and phone connections have been reestablished, the safest way to access information about Syria would be through media like PRESS TV, Al-Alam TV or independent media such as nsnbc, The 4th Media and others.