Archive for the ‘Middle East’ Category

Published: Jan 26, 2011 @14:18 EST. Latest update: Jan 26, 2011 @15:07 EST

Thanks to the contributions of @monamahfouz and others

Although protestors in Egypt have bigger things to worry about now, like kidnappings and live ammunition, here are some tips on how to effectively deal with tear gas, and to NOT let it stop you from peacefully demonstrating.

The best defense against tear gas is a gas mask, but if you don’t have a mask there are still steps you can take to minimize damage from tear gas.

Below are tips on what you need to do to practically eliminate the threat of tear gas.  Things like not panicing and such are important, however your biggest allies are towels, water & air tight goggles. It is a known fact that air tight goggles are not a commodity easily accessible in Egypt, so here is what you should do:

1. Wet/soaked towels around your nose and mouth, add lemon juice, cider vinegar or soda-pop to your homemade face mask.  You must wear them as tight as possible. Loose towels won’t do you much good.

2. Take off your contact lenses.  It is one thing to not wear air-tight goggles, it is far worse to wear contacts while you are being gassed.  Wear your prescription glasses instead, you have better chances with them.

3. Protect your eyes: Use swim/diving goggles if you can’t find an air-tight eye protection. If unavailable, hoodies and other head gear might help.

4. It is a good idea to carry a plastic bag with a cloth of paper towel in it soaked in pure emon juice, cider vinegar or soda-pop. Seal it and breath the fumes if you get exposed to high doses of tear gas. Any acid can be used to neutralise tear gas, though bleach is best. Fumes of chopped-up onions underneath the nose can help. Carry some in plastic bag, use as needed.

5. Do NOT panic.  You will only start breathing harder and you will inhale more fumes that will cause more pain.

6. Dress in layers. Once a layer of clothes catches the fumes, you should remove that layer, or you will continue breathing the fumes in smaller doses on extended periods of time. try to wear waterproof/rain clothes as a top layer. If desperate, use heavy-duty garbage bags.

7. Only if you can, kick the launched smoke canisters away from you and other people in your crowd. Do NOT grab them and throw them back right away, they might burn your skin. Only grab and throw back if they are not hot to the touch.

8. NEVER wash/rinse tear gas with hot water. This will open pores and get the skin to suck it more. Use cold water instead.  It is preferable to have a bottle of water dissolving around 5% of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) in it to rinse with.

9. Flush eyes with saline or water. To soothe, use alkaline solutions. Mix baking soda, shampoo, milk or Mylanta with water and flush eyes.

10. Avoid creams that are oil-based or sunscreens. They will increase its absorption through skin and will lead to more respiratory consumption as well.

11. Deal with the source: If there is a garbage bin or bucket on hand, put it over the canister. Also, acids can be used to neutralize tear gas.  If you have a bucket, vinegar, and strong gloves, drop the canister into vinegar.

– Use hockey sticks, cricket bats or baseball bats to hit tear gas canisters back at attackers.


Published: Jan 25, 2011 @16:53 EST. Latest update: Jan 27, 2011 @00:04 EST

For people who need a quick fix: You have three options – Web proxies, thor and hotspot shield. You can find below instructions and links for all three.

So today Egypt, protested. Then, Egypt rioted. Because Egypt needed to vent.  There were reports that twitter was blocked, that were later confirmed by ‘s twitter account @twitterglobalpr in a couple of posts:

@twitterglobalprTwitter Comms
We can confirm that Twitter was blocked in Egypt around 8am PT today. It is impacting both & applications. (1/2)
@twitterglobalprTwitter Comms
Re Egypt block: We believe that the open exchange of info & views benefits societies & helps govts better connect w/ their people. (2/2)

So next time this happens here are a few links, a post by Hussam & a video to help you get around that. Also thanks to @Whodan2 ‘s, @monamahfouz ‘s & @mand0z contributions as well. But first watch this video . . .

Watch this video and see the events that unfold at minute 1:00 of the video.

Here is a proxy link you can use, provided by @Whodan2


Here is another home made bypasser by @mandOz

Here is the post by Hussam on Tuesday, January 25, 2011 at 3:59pm (Original Link)

Here’s a list of circumventor sites to get around that problem. Please make sure this gets to the people that need them.

(These are the better ones) – Good list of working proxy sites. – Another good list – Has a mailing list, sends a link to newly created site about once a week.

Use with or without www, but always use https: (Use these as a last resort, they’re very ad heavy)

This is Hotspot Shield, a program that allows you to access blocked websites anonymously. Here’s the download link. Also works for websites with videos.

You can still access FaceBook over 3G on ur mob phone via VPN (iPhone, Android & BlackBerry) on

There is another one for Mac/PC/Linux that allows you to do the same on your computer:

Finally, here is a video in Arabic explaining how to get around a block of twitter