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From r..@ai.mit.edu (Robert S. Thau)
Subject Re: export restrictions & mirroring Apache at NCSA
Date Thu, 18 May 1995 18:31:57 GMT
   From: Rob Hartill <hartill@ooo.lanl.gov>
   Date: Thu, 18 May 95 15:59:32 MDT

   sure. They're policy is rediculous.. the sooner someone stands up
   and says so, the better. If we find ways to make enforcing the policy
   impossible (e.g. by saying it's European), then they'll have to 
   rethink their policy.

Ummm... there already are separate (compatible) US and European
versions of PGP --- they haven't had to rethink the policy yet.  In
fact, there are test cases as extreme as having the *exact same code*
on paper and on disk, where export of the paper version is legal, and
export on electronic media has been explicitly banned by an
honest-to-God official State Department ruling.

I'm not defending this at all of course.  It's completely ridiculous.
However, it *is* The Law, and there are enough people fighting it at
this point that I don't think one test case more or less will make
much of a difference --- not nearly so much of a difference as, say,
contributing to Phil Zimmerman's defense fund, or towards the legal
expenses of whoever is trying to export the floppy disk containing the
code examples from Schneier's textbook.  (No joke).

   > By their (NSA's) rules, general interfaces (like CCI) not intended for sole
   > use with encryption doesn't fall under restrictions.  The hooks in the NCSA
   > httpd are intended soley for use with restricted encryption code and are

   isn't there a non-US version of PGP out there, which would work
   just as well with the hooks ? if so, they have no right to tell us/NCSA
   that PGP hooks are a bad thing.

See above.  Right, shmight --- they're doing it anyway.  

   ...and we should have hooks for that too.

Hmmm...  maybe setting up a legal defense fund and attracting
contributions is your idea of fun, but it isn't mine.  (And yes, real
people really are under threat of indictment for things just this
silly).  It's not that I'm opposed to civil disobedience in principle,
but we should know very clearly what we're getting into, why, and what
the alternatives are before we decide to go that route.

rst

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