Donald Trump has committed to his plan to ban the internet, and has laid out the details of how he intends to do so.
The Republican presidential hopeful said last week that he intended to shut down parts of the internet so that they could no longer be used by children. The technology is being used by Isis to radicalise young people and so be shut down, he claimed, and Mr Trump said that he would speak to Bill Gates about “closing it up”.
That plan appears to have been walked back, with Mr Trump only threatening that he would close down certain sections of the internet. He said during a debate between Republican presidential hopefuls that he would simply close “areas where we are war with somebody” so that they can’t “use our internet”.
Mr Trump was pressed on the issue by moderator Wolf Blitzer, who asked: “Are you referring to closing down actual portions of the internet? Some say that would put the US in line with China and North Korea.”
“Well look, this is so easy to answer,” Mr Trump said. He once again dismissed criticisms that the plan would threaten freedom of speech, saying: “You talk freedom of speech, you talk freedom of whatever you want, I don’t want them using our internet to take our young impressionable youth”.
Mr Trump said that “Isis is using the internet better than we are using the internet, and it was [the US’s] idea”.
He then went on to detail a plan that consisted of two parts: getting “brilliant people from Silicon Valley and other places” and asking them to shut parts of the internet, and also asking people to “penetrate” it.
Mr Trump said last week that the plan would involve getting smart people like Bill Gates to help him close down the internet. He said during the debate that he would look to use “brilliant people from Silicon Valley and other places, and figure out a way that Isis cannot do what they’re doing”.
Asked whether that meant that he would look to close down parts of the internet, by Wolf Blitzer, Mr Trump committed to the policy.
“I would certainly be open to areas where we are at war with somebody,” he said. “I sure as hell don’t want to let people that want to kill us and kill our nation use our internet”.
Mr Trump then said that he would also ask the same people to “penetrate the internet”, so that they could “find out exactly where Isis and everything about Isis”.
“And we can do that if we use our good people,” he claimed.
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