The subhuman cretins who terrorized Mumbai with a killing spree allegedly used Google Earth to plan their attack. According to the Times Online, Google Earth accused of aiding terrorists, the Bombay High Court (India) is considering whether to order Google to blur its online satellite imaging in the interests of national security.
Although there are indeed privacy and national security issues involving Google Maps and Google Earth, let’s put things in perspective. The Indian government has done almost nothing to defend itself against terrorism despite horrific attacks against the United States, Spain, London, Bali, etc. since 2001.
When you’re fighting a ‘cold war’ for control of Kashmir with people who from time to time do use terrorism to further political and religious interests, maybe you should take a few precautions. The first that comes to mind is actually defending your borders.
What’s behind the litigation against Google Earth? Competition. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is about to launch competing satellite imaging called “Bhuvan” (Earth). What an amazing coincidence.
In essence, the court is being asked to hurt Google to benefit ISRO and do it because of a terrorist attack that would have occurred whether or not Google Earth’s satellite images existed. If India wants to ban things used by terrorists, why not go after clothing manufacturers? After all, the terrorists wore clothes before, during, and after the attacks. Forced nudism would have made the attacks more difficult to carry out.[/sarcasm].
Ridiculous? Perhaps. But no more absurd than capitalizing on a pile of dead bodies to hinder the competition.