Google and the [email protected]: Are Multinational Corporations Part of the Establishment?
Google and the [email protected]: Are Multinational Corporations Part of the Establishment? How independent are the largest corporations in the world? It is often portrayed that companies such as Google are simply private corporations that have very few connections to the establishment. Yet, as It turns out, there are endless connections between many corporate giants and the military-intelligence complex.
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We got a glimpse into this relationship back in 2016, when the former CEO of Google, Eric Schmidt, who, at the time, was Executive Chairman of Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc, became the head of a new innovation board at the Pentagon. Later that year, Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, joined the same board at the Pentagon.
Google and DARPA
The relationship started even before the tech company was founded in the late 1990s. In 1994, the US government launched the Digital Library Initiative (DLI). This initiative awarded research grants to various university projects, mostly those who focused on developments in the early and emerging internet, with the overarching aim of this initiative being the creation of a global digital library.
Multiple organizations were involved in selecting projects for DLI funds. Three of these organizations were the National Science Foundation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which is the arm of the US Department of Defense that funds and develops emerging technologies.
One project that received funding through the DLI was at Stanford University, called The Stanford Integrated Digital Library Project. Between 1994 and 1999, the project received over $4.5 million in awards. The description of the award is very interesting, as it essentially describes what Google became…
The connections between Google and government agencies continued into the 21st century. In the early 2000s, a software company called Keyhole, which developed an earlier version of what became Google Earth, received financing from the CIA’s venture capital firm, In-Q-Tel. The CIA started In-Q-Tel in 1999 as its major investment arm to fund start-ups, businesses, and other ventures, with In-Q-Tel still operational today. The CIA had a partner in financing the Keyhole investment, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA).
Andrea Shalal Former Google CEO Schmidt to head new Pentagon innovation board | Reuters
Eugene Kim Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos joins Pentagon Defense Advisory Board (businessinsider.com)
On the Origins of Google | NSF - National Science Foundation
Digital Libraries Initiative (DLI) Projects 1994‐1999 - Fox - 1999 - Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science and Technology - Wiley Online Library
NSF Award Search: Award # 9411306 - The Stanford Integrated Digital Library Project
Yasha Levin (20 Dec. 2018) Google’s Earth: how the tech giant is helping the state spy on us | Google | The Guardian
Leanna Garfield (30 De. 2015) CIA's EarthViewer was the original Google Earth (businessinsider.com)
Matt Hines (27 Oct. 2004) Google buys satellite image firm Keyhole - CNET
Noah Shachtman (29 July, 2010) Google, CIA Invest in 'Future' of Web Monitoring - ABC News
Glenn Greenwald and Ewen Macaskill (7 June, 2013) NSA Prism program taps in to user data of Apple, Google and others | US news | The Guardian
Ellen Nakashima (4 Feb. 2010) Google to enlist NSA to help it ward off cyberattacks (washingtonpost.com)
Court rules NSA can keep mum on ties with Google | Fox News Associated Press
Chris Ciaccia CIA awards cloud computing contract worth billions to firms including Amazon, Microsoft, Google | Fox Business
Jim Edwards (11 July, 2011) Social Media Is a Tool of the CIA. Seriously - CBS News
About IQT – In-Q-Tel
Kim Zetter Steve Jobs' Pentagon File: Blackmail Fears, Youthful Arrest and LSD Cubes | WIRED
David Alexander - Pentagon teams up with Apple, Boeing to develop wearable tech, Reuters https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-defense-tech-idUSKCN0QX12D20150828
BBC News, Apple helped make 'top secret' iPod for US government https://www.bbc.co.
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