Radio Free Swat Valley

[Note: Mike has just sent this in from the field, I post it on his behalf. -JMB].

Like I’ve been sayin’, over, and over, and over again…

Our friends over at the Danger Room report on the Pentagon’s move to shut down “Mullah FM,” a pirate radio station run by Mullah Fazlullah in Pakistan’s northwestern frontier.  Other pirate radio stations in the region are targets as well.  The Taleban there has used radio as a means of propagandising, terrorising, intimidating, and consolidating its control over the region.  

 

Radio has long been central to propaganda in conflict zones, but this new war on the airwaves…  much harder stretch to collapse this into domains virtual. Denial of sanctuary – pfffft.  This, just like attempts to control the internet/web, is resource conflict/interdiction. Is the plan to jam, but not nail the physical broadcast sites? Major point being missed here, even in the Danger Room piece, is that it’s a whole lot easier to zap a few radio broadcast sites than it is to identify and neutralize thousands of distributed web access points.

Lessons of Rwanda? Oh, wait, we don’t want to go down that route:  Commando Solo (or whatever’s being used now) is too expensive per hour, and it would be a violation of freedom of speech.

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