Bonum Certa Men Certa

September 11: Axel Beckert (ETH Zurich) attacks American freedoms

posted by Roy Schestowitz on Apr 20, 2024

Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock.

Under Jonathan Carter, Debian has spent over $120,000 attacking a volunteer. What type of lawyering does this money buy?

The date September 11, also referred to as 9-11, is well known as the anniversary of the tragic attacks that Al Qaeda made against targets in the United States of America.

Shortly after the anniversary of the attacks in September 2010, Der Spiegel published an article about Operation Pastorius, Hitler's plans that included the use of either missiles or kamikaze pilots to destroy the towers of New York City.

Many free software products and free software organizations have been founded in the United States and have been founded on promises of freedom that resonate with the American philosophy.

For example, the real FSF was founded by Dr Richard Stallman in Boston. Dr Stallman is widely known for making the distinction between free as in speech as opposed to free as in beer.

Various observers have noted that these values, inspired by the First Amendmant and Bill of Rights, are closely intertwined with the philosophy of software freedom.

In Coding Freedom (E. Gabriella Coleman, Princeton University Press), the author explores many of the synergies between freedom philosophies in licenses, in technology and in speech. Interestingly, Coleman anticipates the vendettas being practiced through the UDRP today:

Because a commitment to free speech and intellectual property is housed under the same roof—the US Constitution—the potential for conflict has long existed. For most of their legal existence, however, conflict was noticeably absent, largely because the scope of both free speech and intellectual property law were more contained than they are today. It was only during the course of the twentieth-century that the First Amendment and intellectual property took on the unprecedented symbolic and legal mean- ings they now command in the United States as well as many other nations.

while noting the intersection of Debian with the DeCSS affair and other milestones in the evolution of the Internet:

Much of the coherence emerged through reasoned political debate. Cleverness—or prankstership—played a pivotal role as well. Prodromou, a Debian developer and editor of one of the first Internet zines, Pigdog, circulated a decoy program that hijacked the name DeCSS, even though it performed an entirely different operation from Johansen’s DeCSS.

Decoding Liberation: The Promise of Free and Open Source Software, (Samir Chopra, Scott D. Dexter) makes more observations on the relationship between the First Amendment and Software Freedom:

In the following year, Bruce Perens reframed this definition as the Debian Social Contract (Debian Project 2004), emphasizing the rights of, and programmers’ responsibilities to, the community of users.

The Fedora Foundations, advanced by Red Hat, now a subsidiary of IBM, brought together developers under a similar promise:

Freedom: We are dedicated to free software and content. Advancing software and content freedom is a central community goal, which we accomplish through the software and content we promote.

Many of us have contributed decades of work under these terms and conditions, the promise of an American style of freedom.

Yet this is under attack and one of the most dramatic attacks in the history of free software was launched on September 11, 2022, when a group of fascist Germans and Swiss banded together to demand state violence against volunteers discussing the toxic culture in Debian.

Axel Beckert, September 11, Debian Social Contract

The September 11 attacks were notable for the impact on the emergency services, especially the firemen. One of the volunteers being attacked started doing voluntary work with the Wireless Institute Civil Emergency Network (WICEN) when he was fourteen years old.

How would you feel if little Germans like Axel Beckert at ETH Zurich were plotting against you and your family on the anniversary of the most notorious terrorist attacks in living memory?

The September 11 attacks involved a huge and immediate loss of life. In Debian, we have seen the evidence of a suicide cluster slowly coming out of the shadows. One of the volunteers has died, in a possible suicide, on the very same day the latest victim went to the church to get married.

Axel Beckert, ETH Zurich, Debian, perjury

How much of the $120,000 Debian legal budget paid for this abhorrent attack on American principles and freedoms that underpin the world of free software? Who pocketed that money

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