For those who came in late, Project Nimbus is a cloud project that Amazon and Google are working on with the Israeli government. The $1.2 billion contract, was first announced in early 2022 and critics have alleged that the Israeli military could potentially weaponise its cloud computing infrastructure to surveil or oppress Palestinians.
Protests were spread across the US, with demonstrations in San Francisco, New York, Seattle and Durham, North Carolina. But both Google and Amazon are sticking to their guns -- or rather the Israel guns.
A Google spokesperson, Atle Erlingsson, has maintained that protestors are “misrepresenting the contract which is just for running workloads on our commercial platform by Israeli government ministries such as finance, healthcare, transportation, and education. ”
He insisted that the work was not directed at highly sensitive or classified military workloads relevant to weapons or intelligence services.
However, Google Cloud software engineer Josh Marxen has pointed out how some of the products could be used for agressive ends.
“We know that the AI, machine learning and big data management technologies are the ones that are going to be the most instrumental if they were to be integrated into the surveillance systems," he said.
Amazon is not saying anything, but this is not the first time the company's employees have hit out against their bosses.