September 25, 2007:
especially those in dictatorships, have found cell phones to be a major asset.
The basic advantage is that people use phones more frequently once cell phones
are available. These devices have an addictive quality about them that few can
resist. Moreover, it's usually possible to determine where a person was each
time they used a cell phone. Police love this feature, which makes it easier to
nail criminals. But police states find these capabilities useful simply to keep
track of their citizens. Moreover, if anyone gets out of line, their cell phone
service can be cut off, or monitored.
Because cell phones are so addictive, police states
find that their control of the cell phone networks to be a powerful tool to
keep control of the population. While cell phone users can communicate more
easily, this is not without risk, as many cell phone users in dictatorships are