Sunday, August 27, 2017

Google's complicity with the Castro regime exposed in The Wall Street Journal

"You can make money without doing evil." - ( #6 of Ten things we know to be true by Google)

Google executive Eric Schmidt signs agreement with Castro regime in December 2016
Mary Anastasia O'Grady today in her column in The Wall Street Journal, "Google’s Broken Promise to Cubans" sets the record straight on a controversy that began in late July.

Last month on July 22, 2017 Rosa María Payá Acevedo tweeted that CubaDecide was banned in Cuba, describing it as "the error with which Google joins censorship in Cuba." This led to a flurry of tweets about the question of censorship and Google in Cuba. Mary O'Grady of The Wall Street Journal tweeted "Google bows to Cuban censorship."  

Rosa María Payá criticized Google censorship of CubaDecide
 Michael Weissenstein of the Associated Press replied that it wasn't Cuba but U.S. regulations and Google's Brett Perlmutter doubled down in a tweet blaming the U.S. embargo.  Former Bush Administration official Jose Cardenas contested both Weissenstein's and Perlmutter's claims tweeting "that is simply NOT true. No US regs block websites in Cuba."

Ms O'Grady finally set the record straight on Sunday in her column after following up with Google and the ISP:
Mr. Perlmutter did not cite any provision of the U.S. embargo that requires the blocking of a nonprofit citizens’ initiative—because there is no such provision. On Wednesday a Google spokesperson told me “we can’t say for sure what’s causing the issue with that site but it isn’t something we’re doing on our end . . . If you want more details, I recommend you check with the ISP.”
By Friday the company was no longer blaming the ISP. Instead, Google told me—in a paradox that must be delicious for Castro—that it is Cuba Decide’s use of Google’s Project Shield that is causing the problem. The shield is offered at no charge for “news sites and free expression” against “distributed denial-of-service” attacks. When it is used, it triggers the use of Google’s App Engine even if Google is not the website’s host—which it isn’t in this case—and Cubans cannot access the site.
Google has distanced itself from Mr Perlmutter's statements saying they “do not represent an official Google position” and that the content of his tweet was made “before all the facts of the specific situation were known,” they told Mary O'Grady.  

According to their blog "the Tor network is a group of volunteer-operated servers that allows people to improve their privacy and security on the Internet." On August 28, 2017 the Tor Blog revealed that Google is blocking Cuban websites:
Cuba’s ISP isn’t the only one blocking access to services. OONI’s Network Diagnostic Test (NDT) relies on M-Lab servers, which in turn rely on Google App Engine. Initially, we weren’t able to run NDT tests in Cuba. Once we manually specified the test servers, not only were we able to run NDT, but it also became evident that Google is blocking access to Google App Engine from Cuba.
This confirms Rosa María Payá Acevedo's charge that Google was censoring Cuba Decide in Cuba.
Furthermore it raises the question when will Google lifts its blockade on Cuban dissident websites?

Google's Eric Schmidt signed agreement with Castro regime telecom monopoly
The Notes from the Cuban Exile Quarter blog over the past four years has reported on Google's relationship with Cuba. Sadly it is a series of blog entries beginning with optimism, tempered in later entries by pessimism following Google's engagement with the dictatorship, and finally outrage as Google's collaboration with the Castro regime became evident.



  1. Google following their " Globalist" agenda has become is the most saw out accomplice of these totalitarian regimes to censor, identify and ultimately punish dissent. Prederatory capitalism at it's best.

    1. Let us hope that Google sees the light and returns to its original mission statement of making "money without doing evil." They are a powerful tech company that could do a lot of good in Cuba but that's not going to happen collaborating with the Castro dictatorship.

  2. Hi John,

    Google just signed another MoU with Cuba's ETEC S.A. last week( Remember when many in Cuba blamed lousy internet access in Cuba on sanctions, and Obama's opening to Cuba made clear that the incompetence and fear of uncontrolled info was the root cause (recall that the Chinese telecom giant Huawei has invested in Cuba for nearly two decades)? The Google presence in Cuba fulfills Trump administration officials' determination to keep Russia and China out of Latin America.