It's always tanks.
I was only a kid when Tiananmen Square happened, and that wasn't the first time a government unleash them on its own people, but it was the first time it penetrated what they really meant, what they were. Bombs were scary; planes with bombs were scarier. Missiles, guns, napalm, sarin gas, the power of well-armed, soulless military unleashed; compared to a hydrogen bomb, I wasn't seeing a giant, unwieldy, slow, awkward looking metal contraption as a threat, right up until that's exactly what it was.
Granted, I was below the age of reason, but now, intellectually, if asked which I'd rather face, hydrogen bomb shouldn't be the knee-jerk choice. I'm still sitting in front of the TV watching the people who seemed so small, fragile, and it didn't seem like you could outrun that. Even if it was slow, maybe that was because they never stopped. Even when you did.
Since then, they're almost a trademark of a government's loss of control over its citizens; they roll out, slow and merciless, faceless with the message, You are now the enemy.
It's always tanks.
But now it's also the internet, as giant and unwieldy, but never slow, and powerful the way a tank can't ever be, two things that herald collapse or revolution, tanks and killing the internet, and the internet, that I get. Egypt rolled out its tanks and cut off its internet, because a tank is huge and a person may seem very small when they stand before them, but they're so much larger than can be imagined when they don't have to stand alone.
Protesters in Venezuela took over the Egyptian Embassy in a show of solidarity for the people of Egypt. They returned the embassy to Egypt after speaking with their Foreign Minister.
Egypt Protests and Twitter Reacts including this:
RT@timbray: RT@Mpegg: The Internet is sad tonight and has the porchlight on for Egypt
Anonymous is declaring war on the Egyptian government, and return to root with mass faxing of wikilinks cables to Egypt, along with a group called Telecomix offering up their dialup and going to ham radio. Then they joined forces to get the internet back to Egypt one way or another.
Tanks seem smaller than I remember. Or maybe people are just getting larger.
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