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Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society

The Berkman Klein Center (BKC) for Internet & Society is housed at Harvard University and closely related to both the Harvard Law School and Harvard Kennedy School. BKC aims to study the legal and social implications of the Internet and related developments in computing. Like other centers at Harvard focused on policy, BKC collaborates with and offers positions to servants of US empire.

Support for policing and the US national security state

In 2014, the Berkman Klein Center hosted John DeLong, then Director of Compliance at the National Security Agency (NSA), for a panel discussion on "Intelligence Gathering and the Unowned Internet." Later, DeLong was appointed as a fellow at BKC to work on cybersecurity, where DeLong helped shape a notable 2016 position paper BKC published on the use of cryptography. BKC stated that this 2016 paper incorporated "analyses of an unprecedentedly diverse group of security and policy experts from academia, civil society, and the U.S. intelligence community," exemplifying BKC's (and Harvard's) notion that the national security state is an important "stakeholder" in their work who should be consulted on all matters. Another BKC panel from 2021 on "Constitutional Values and the Rule of Law in the AI Era: Confronting a Changing Threat Landscape" featured Glenn Gerstell, former General Counsel to the NSA. BKC has had numerous other affiliates with deep ties to the US government over the years, such as Joseph Nye (at Harvard Kennedy School), who served as Chair of National Intelligence Council under Bill Clinton and was also an advisor to the Obama administration. While BKC pays occasional lip service to dissidents such as Edward Snowden, at the end of the day the US security state's revolving door with BKC guarantees that BKC's work will never seriously challenge interests of the United States and its global empire.

BKC has also fostered ties with policing and its ideological backers. In 2015, Sandra Cortesi, then director of the Youth and Media Project at BKC, spoke at the Police Innovation Conference which took place in Boston. Cortesi's talk was titled "Youth, Gangs & Social Media." The City of Cambridge described the Police Innovation Conference as a gathering that is "designed to bring together progressive law enforcement agencies from across the country with some of the great minds in technology and policing. Conference-goers will attend sessions where members of academia, the private sector, and fellow law enforcement agencies will share their expertise and ideas." In addition to Cortesi, the conference featured speakers from the Green Bay Police Department, the Cambridge Police Department, MIT Lincoln Labs, iRobot, and Microsoft, among others. Such conferences do ideological work to normalize policing and collaborations with the police in the US.

Ideological support for Israel

Over the years, the Berkman Klein Center has hosted numerous Israeli researchers representing Israeli universities. In 2019, BKC hosted Israeli Supreme Court member Hanan Melcer, inviting Melcer to share his wisdom about "how Israel dealt with propaganda in its two 2019 elections." Yochai Benkler, a faculty member at Harvard Law School and BKC, said during Melcer's event, "(Israel) saw everything we [in US] saw in our last election cycle, and much that we will likely see in the next two years."

Upholding the institutions of US imperialism and capitalism

During moments of rebellion, when the repressive institutions of US empire are being challenged, places like BKC are there to try to restore the old social order. Some examples of BKC members picking up the pieces: 

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