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Google Earth Street View Image of Fort Sam Houston before it was Removed  (Source: BBC News)
Pentagon bans Google from taking images and video of military installations

Services like Google Earth are viewed by many to be nothing more than an interesting curiosity.  However, for the U.S. military and other world governments the satellite images and other footage Google offers on its Earth service represents a big security risk.

BBC News reports that the Pentagon has banned Google from filming inside and making detailed studies of U.S. military bases. The ban comes after detailed footage from inside and outside of the U.S. military base at Fort Sam Houston in Texas turned on up Google Earth’s Street View service.

Street View is a service of Google Earth that allows users of the application to travel down streets from the perspective of a car driver. The problem the Pentagon had with these images was that they were shot with great detail and were found to represent a significant security risk.

The defense department said in a statement quoted by BBC News, “Images include 360-degree views of the covered area to include access control points, barriers, headquarters, facilities and community areas.” The fear is that terrorists could use the detailed images to develop plans to attack the base.

Larry Yu, a Google spokesman, told BBC News that the decision to enter the US military base had been a “mistake.” Yu further said, “[it is] not our policy to request access to military installations, but in this instance the operator of the vehicle with the camera on top - which is how we go about capturing imagery for Street-View - requested permission to access a military installation, was given access, and after learning of the incident we quickly removed the imagery".

The U.S. military isn’t the only military force that has had problems with images shown on Google Earth. DailyTech reported in July of 2007 that satellite imagery form Google Earth had shown a new Chinese ballistic missile sub in dock. Indian officials became irate when images of its new Sukhoi 30 MK1 aircraft turned up on Google Earth as well.

A U.S. spy agency stated in May of 2007 that curbs needed to be placed on satellite images made available to the public.



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RE: The way it should be
By cvmaas on 3/7/2008 7:17:07 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, maybe it is you that needs to learn how to read and properly do research. These comments on Pearl Harbor are very distasteful and disrespectful to those that gave their lives for us on that sad day!!

How you can constitute the USA receiving the declaration of war from Japan only 15 minutes before the attack into saying we knowingly sat back and let it happen is absurd! Honestly, did we really need to be decimated at Pearl Harbor in order to justify joining the war in self-defense? If Japan attacked us, and as you beleive, we could have actually fought back and not, not been told anything, would it really take anything more than that to justify self-defense?

You seem to forget that one way or another more than 50% of the country was for the Iraq war in the beginning. Granted, many people thought that way due to mis-information, but nonetheless, we were still drawn into war. Now if Iraq had attacked us, as Japan did, even if we didn't lose a single soldier in the attack, would anyone be complaining today about attacking Iraq?


RE: The way it should be
By andyjary on 3/7/08, Rating: 0
"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007














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