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The Newsroom => International Defence and Security => Topic started by: 2010newbie on November 25, 2010, 13:57:34

Title: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 2010newbie on November 25, 2010, 13:57:34
From cbc.ca

Quote
The U.S. government has notified Ottawa that the WikiLeaks website is preparing to release sensitive U.S. diplomatic files that could damage U.S. relations with allies around the world.

U.S. officials say the documents may contain accounts of compromising conversations with political dissidents and friendly politicians and could result in the expulsion of U.S. diplomats from foreign postings.



Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/technology/story/2010/11/24/wikileaks-ottawa.html#ixzz16JluRGO3


More here:

http://english.aljazeera.net/news/americas/2010/11/201011257272126324.html

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-11-24/pentagon-warns-house-senate-defense-panels-of-more-wikileaks-documents.html

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 26, 2010, 16:31:55
Looks like Canada gets to follow the US in the latest round of leaks from WikiLeaks, and some people seem to think this is a good thing.

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Coffee Talk
More WikiLeaks on the way, and Canada may be involved
26/11/2010 8:30:00 AM

by Greg & Daniela

LINK  (http://news.sympatico.ca/oped/coffee-talk/more_wikileaks_on_the_way_and_canada_may_be_involved_/66892ecb)

In this installment of He Said/She Said, we take on the impending release of more classified documents by muckraking site WikiLeaks. This time Ottawa may be involved.

He Said:
Daniela, the word on the street is that either late today or tomorrow, the muckraking site WikiLeaks is going to release its biggest batch of classified documents yet (http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2010/11/25/wikileaks-us025.html) - reportedly more than two million of them.

It was only back in July that WikiLeaks' first round was released: some 77,000 docs on the Afghan War. In October, a bigger batch dropped, as 400,000 papers about the Iraq War - most of them originating from Pentagon reports - stirred up a major frenzy both in the U.S. and across the globe.

Now we're up to two million? That's a lot of secret documents. With those kinds of numbers, it stands to reason that there are going to be a lot of upset people out there - and many of them, surely, with egg on their face.

One thing's for sure: the anticipation is intense - all the more so because at press time the WikiLeaks.org (http://wikileaks.org/) site is actually down, presumably owing to massive traffic loads and/or anticipatory maintenance as we count down to the site's latest release.

In other words, it's an ironic possibility that the world is so keen to get at the hidden truths about to be revealed that the site won't actually be able to reveal them. At least not as quickly as it had hoped.

Why all the anticipation? Haven't previous WikiLeaks releases already told us just about everything the U.S. government - and particularly its military - doesn't want us to know?

The rumour is that this time around, many of the classified documents may reveal "accounts of compromising conversations with political dissidents and friendly politicians," potentially damaging relations with U.S. allies and/or exacerbating tension with its enemies.

Even Canada may not emerge unscathed: Defense Minister Peter MacKay admits that he's "worried," but only if the leaked information reveals anything that would compromise the safety of our troops overseas - which is, of course, a very laudable concern.

There is also speculation that the leaked docs might reveal the extent to which the U.S. put pressure on other countries to repatriate foreign-born combatants held at Guantanamo Bay. One of the most famous of these detainees, of course, is Omar Khadr, who was born in Toronto.

Whatever this new batch of documents reveals, one thing's for sure: WikiLeaks has emerged as a very polarizing force in modern society.

Daniela, what do you think? Is WikiLeaks doing a good thing by getting all these Top Secret documents out there in the public eye? Or is it being irresponsible?

Seems to me that as long as we're living in a democratically-elected country, we have a right to know what's being undertaken by our government. And I certainly think that it was important, if deeply disturbing, for the world to see the shocking "Collateral Murder" (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rXPrfnU3G0) video, which showed U.S. forces knowingly firing on civilians in Baghdad - a misadventure that ultimately led to the death of 12 innocents, including a pair of Reuters journalists. 

But what if there's something to what Mr. MacKay says about the possibility that our safety might be compromised? Do you have any fears that any of the upcoming leaks might put people in harm's way? Soldiers, say, or political dissidents? Or is the mission of WikiLeaks - shining daylight on the black ops that tend to envelop international relations - unassailable, no matter what happens as a result?

Daniela, it's tough to weigh in when we don't know what info the documents contain. Or maybe it isn't. But I'm definitely interested to hear what you think.

She Said:  Greg, WikiLeaks is absolutely essential to democracy. If not for whistleblowers, we may never get to the truth of many political or social wrongdoings.  I don't often agree with CNN but when the Afghanistan documents were released they wrote that WikiLeaks is a 'triumph of data journalism' (http://edition.cnn.com/2010/OPINION/07/29/wikileaks.roy.greenslade/index.html) and I couldn't agree more. In all cases the website should be seen as progressive in terms of politics and definitely in terms of journalism. It changes the face of journalism in the best possible way.

Previously, what may have taken painstaking years to uncover through a news outlet's private investigation is now being released for all to see. Journalist's have more access to information than ever before and this can only be a good thing. Free and open dissemination of all information should be first priority, regardless of consequence.

Of course the leaks cause some people to be nervous about the safety of our troops, but if Defense Minister Peter MacKay was truly concerned for their safety, wouldn't he just pull them out? Obviously it's not that simple, but the argument regarding safety of the troops is moot when you consider the harm they are put in by being there in the first place.

If WikiLeaks goes away, another website or outlet will pop up to take its place; it's here to stay. I particularly love the founder Julian Assange's declaration that his website will not respond to threats or lawsuits and that the site is impenetrable. He assures us that it's an "uncensorable system for untraceable mass document leaking and public analysis." The man is committed to being a purveyor of truth, or at least of documents that give us additional insight into the truth.

A while back, WikiLeaks released secret manuals from the church of Scientology and Scientology lawyers threatened Assange. His response was to release more of the manuals and also this statement, "WikiLeaks will not comply with legally abusive requests from Scientology any more than WikiLeaks has complied with similar demands from Swiss banks, Russian offshore stem-cell centers, former African kleptocrats, or the Pentagon." (http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2010/06/wikileaks)

This is a powerful declaration and one that should be celebrated. Those in government who are nervous by WikiLeaks need to wake up and smell the ink on those documents.
 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on November 26, 2010, 16:38:32
As someone smarter than me said elsewhere, one has to wonder about "speaking the truth to power" if it's at risk of being leaked out of context.....
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Mr. Bumpy on November 26, 2010, 17:24:45
And when will the local ski team be visiting WikiLeaks? I guess it's a need to know bases.  :pop:

Regards,
TN2IC
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: DBA on November 27, 2010, 22:35:40
The danger I see with Wikileaks is it's falling into the same trap that leads all those who wish to do good astray: I am good, my motive is good so my actions are good. This is a logical fallacy as actions stand on their own and regardless of intentions or source are evil or good on their own. My view is we are going to have more Rwandas out of this than anything else as those with the will to act grow tired of the complaints and criticism from those on the sidelines. As the quote goes "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." and with the US facing so much backlash they will be doing nothing more often. That is a loss for us all. What replaces it won't be better, it will be much worse.

Reminds me of Animal Farm. Getting rid of something isn't the hard part, replacing it with something better is and is often where failure looms. Farmer gone, pigs in charge and good old Boxer on his way to the glue factory.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: IBM on November 28, 2010, 09:41:11
Assange and his die-hard supporters seems to me to be idealists that believe in, and ONLY in, the truth setting us all free and the consequences be damned. While they no doubt still have their own personal agendas as well in choosing to do so, I serious doubt what they hope to realistically accomplish at the end of the day; except maybe embarrass the heck out of certain people in positions of power. Perhaps they do know that's all they will really accomplish and don't care otherwise. They certainly got the attention they wanted.

I agree with DBA with respect to the fact that they may end up unintentionally doing more harm than good. What if the fallout from all this end up being that gov't around the world tightening up their flow if information to the public, including material that is not necessary harmful to state security? It's human nature to want to lock the barn door after the horse is gone, which does nothing about the 1st horse, but it sure might stop you from losing any more horses (info).  This would be the exact opposite of what Assange & Co. is advocating for with their actions: Information ends up being less free than before.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 28, 2010, 11:28:48
I agree with DBA with respect to the fact that they may end up unintentionally doing more harm than good. What if the fallout from all this end up being that gov't around the world tightening up their flow if information to the public, including material that is not necessary harmful to state security? It's human nature to want to lock the barn door after the horse is gone, which does nothing about the 1st horse, but it sure might stop you from losing any more horses (info).  This would be the exact opposite of what Assange & Co. is advocating for with their actions: Information ends up being less free than before.

The various governments around the world already have security protocols in place to keep secrets from their population.  The public doesn't need to know the who, what, where and when of how or why the government protects them, only that they have policies and agencies in place to protect them.  What we are seeing is not a laxness on the part of these governments, but the morals and ethics of some of the people who have been chosen to enforce these policies.   Human nature will always produce someone who feels they are morally superior to others and do not have to follow security protocols implaced to protect the public.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 28, 2010, 11:34:03
The saga continues.  Now the UK gets to follow the US in the latest round of leaks from WikiLeaks.


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


U.K. government wants WikiLeaks media briefing: report

27/11/2010 2:04:04 PM
CBC News

LINK  (http://news.sympatico.cbc.ca/home/uk_government_wants_wikileaks_media_briefing_report/61f01b1f)

Britain's government, anticipating another WikiLeaks dump, has issued a notice to British news editors, saying it wants to be consulted before they publish the classified documents, according to the whistleblower's website.

On its Twitter page, WikiLeaks said the government has issued a DA-notice (Defence Advisory Notice), asking to be briefed by British media outlets that gain access to the sensitive files.

More than two million diplomatic cables, sent between Washington and its embassies and consulates around the world, could be released as early as this weekend.

U.S. officials, including Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, have been trying to brief allies on what may be in the documents. The U.S. ambassador to Canada, David Jacobson, has phoned Minister of Foreign Affairs Lawrence Cannon to inform him of the matter.

This would be the third time such a large number of previously classified documents assembled by WikiLeaks has been made available to major media outlets. In July, it released 77,000 papers on the Afghan war. Then in October, it went public with 400,000 papers on Pentagon reports about the Iraq war.

This time WikiLeaks said the report will be on Afghanistan, Russia and other former Soviet republics, suggesting huge embarrassments, as well as classified U.S. discussions revealing corruption allegations against foreign government leaders. That's what has the U.S. worried.

Alan Rusbridger, editor of the Guardian, said Saturday that judging from his reading of the WikiLeaks material, only a small portion of the documents is covered by the British government's DA-notice.

In previous dumps, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has chosen the Guardian, the New York Times and Der Spiegel as the recipients.


Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on November 28, 2010, 11:37:02
This is so stupid. They've had these "files" for weeks, and keep milking publicity from their impending release. In all reality, the 100,000 files they have are probably 999,999 requests for toner for secure printers.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 28, 2010, 12:46:08
Doubt this will do any good, but they tried:



Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


US warns Wikileaks' Assange on possible leak
28 November 2010 Last updated at 10:59 ET
BBC News

LINK  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11856122)

The US has written to the founder of whistle-blowing website Wikileaks, Julian Assange, urging him not release a batch of diplomatic files.


The release of classified state department documents is against US law and will put "countless" lives at risk, the letter warns.

Wikileaks says it is set to unveil a new set of documents, bigger than past releases on Afghanistan and Iraq.

Mr Assange has said the US authorities are afraid of being held to account.

The latest leak is expected to include documents covering US dealings and diplomats' confidential views of countries including Australia, Britain, Canada, Israel, Russia and Turkey.

"The material that we are about to release covers essentially every major issue in every country in the world," Mr Assange told reporters by video link.

A journalist with Britain's Guardian newspaper, which has been working with Wikileaks on publishing the files, said they would include an unflattering US assessment of UK PM David Cameron.

No-one has been charged with passing the diplomatic files to the website but suspicion has fallen on US Army private Bradley Manning, an intelligence analyst arrested in Iraq in June and charged over an earlier leak of classified US documents to Mr Assange's organisation.

'Seven times larger'

The letter from the US state department's legal advisor Harold Koh was a response to correspondence from Mr Assange, who had written to the US ambassador to Britain, Louis Susman.

A senior American official told the BBC that Mr Assange was offering to negotiate over limited redactions.

In response, Mr Koh demanded that Wikileaks return official documents to the US government.

"We will not engage in a negotiation regarding the further release or dissemination of illegally obtained US government classified materials," Mr Koh stated in the letter.

Mr Koh's letter adds that the publication of the documents would endanger the lives of "countless" individuals - from journalists to human rights activists and bloggers - and put US military operations at risk.

Correspondents say the letter is a rare move for the US administration, and reflects the government's concern about the implications of the possible leak.

Wikileaks earlier this week said that the next release would be nearly seven times larger than the nearly 400,000 Pentagon documents related to the Iraq war it published in October.

It has not confirmed when the documents will be made public, but there is some speculation that the release will take place on Sunday. Guardian journalist Simon Hoggart said the paper would publish extensive details on Monday.

He told the BBC: "There is going to be some embarrassment certainly for Gordon Brown but even more so for David Cameron who was not very highly regarded by the Obama administration or by the US ambassador here."

The Sunday Times also quoted an official who warned that British citizens in Muslim countries could be targeted in a backlash against perceived "anti-Islamic" views.

The UK Ministry of Defence has urged newspaper editors to "bear in mind" the national security implications of publishing any of the files.

Wikileaks argues that the site's previous releases shed light on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. They included allegations of torture by Iraqi forces and reports that suggested 15,000 additional civilian deaths in Iraq.


More on LINK
 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11856122)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MPgonnabe on November 28, 2010, 15:39:18
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/29/world/middleeast/29missiles.html

Iran Fortifies Its Arsenal With the Aid of North Korea

Secret American intelligence assessments have concluded that Iran has obtained a cache of advanced missiles, based on a Russian design, that are much more powerful than anything Washington has publicly conceded that Tehran has in its arsenal, diplomatic cables show.

Iran obtained 19 of the missiles from North Korea, according to a cable dated Feb. 24 of this year. The cable is a detailed, highly classified account of a meeting between top Russian officials and an American delegation led by Vann H. Van Diepen, an official with the State Department’s nonproliferation division who, as a national intelligence officer several years ago, played a crucial role in the 2007 assessment of Iran’s nuclear capacity.

The missiles could for the first time give Iran the capacity to strike at capitals in Western Europe or at Moscow, and American officials warned that their advanced propulsion could speed Iran’s development of intercontinental ballistic missiles.

There has been scattered but persistent speculation on the topic since 2006, when fragmentary reports surfaced that North Korea might have sold Iran missiles based on a Russian design called the R-27, once used aboard Soviet submarines to carry nuclear warheads. In the unclassified world, many arms control experts concluded that isolated components made their way to Iran, but there has been little support for the idea that complete missiles, with their huge thrusters, had been secretly shipped.

The Feb. 24 cable, which is among those obtained by WikiLeaks and made available to a number of news organizations, makes it clear that American intelligence agencies believe that the complete shipment indeed took place, and that Iran is taking pains to master the technology in an attempt to build a new generation of missiles. The missile intelligence also suggests far deeper military — and perhaps nuclear — cooperation between North Korea and Iran than was previously known. At the request of the Obama administration, The New York Times has agreed not to publish the text of the cable.

The North Korean version of the advanced missile, known as the BM-25, could carry a nuclear warhead. Many experts say that Iran remains some distance from obtaining a nuclear warhead, especially one small enough to fit atop a missile, though they believe that it has worked hard to do so.

Still, the BM-25 would be a significant step up for Iran.

Today, the maximum range of Iran’s known ballistic missiles is roughly 1,200 miles, according to experts. That means they could reach targets throughout the Middle East, including Israel, as well as all of Turkey and parts of Eastern Europe.

The range of the Russian R-27, launched from a submarine, was said to be up to 1,500 miles.

Rocket scientists say the BM-25 is longer and heavier, and carries more fuel, giving it a range of up to 2,000 miles. If fired from Iran, that range, in theory, would let its warheads reach targets as far away as Western Europe, including Berlin. If fired northwestward , the warheads could reach Moscow.

A range of 2,000 miles is considered medium or intermediate. Traditionally, the United States has defined long-range or intercontinental ballistic missiles as having ranges greater than 3,400 miles.

The fuel for the advanced engines goes by the tongue-twisting name of unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine, according to the secret cables. It is a highly toxic, volatile clear liquid with a sharp, fishy smell.

International concern about advances in Iran’s missile program increased last year, after Tehran sent its first satellite into space. Experts said it was clear that the second stage of the rocket, known as the Safir, had employed a new, more powerful class of engines that took advantage of some elements of the Russian technology. American government experts say the engines of the Russian R-27 represent an improvement of roughly 40 percent in lifting force over the kerosene-fired engines that power most Iranian missiles.

“Without this higher-energy output, the Safir would have failed in its mission to orbit a small satellite,” said a report issued in May by the International Institute for Strategic Studies, an arms analysis group in London.

The London group’s report, though, gives no indication of access to the American intelligence assessment. Indeed, the report argued that while Iran had some elements of the R-27 technology, the available public evidence suggested that it had made no purchase of either the complete North Korean missile or its Russian parent.

The cables say that Iran not only obtained the BM-25, but also saw the advanced technology as a way to learn how to design and build a new class of more powerful engines.

“Iran wanted engines capable of using more-energetic fuels,” the Feb. 24 cable said, “and buying a batch of BM-25 missiles gives Iran a set it can work on for reverse engineering.”

The cable added that Tehran could use the BM-25 technologies as “building blocks” for the production of long-range missiles. But it offered no information to back up that assessment.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on November 28, 2010, 15:46:46
This is so stupid. They've had these "files" for weeks, and keep milking publicity from their impending release. In all reality, the 100,000 files they have are probably 999,999 requests for toner for secure printers.
That may be true if you were looking at ALL the cables, but we don't know how many have been left out, what they say, or the thinking/motivation of the person who picked/chose what got leaked to Wikileaks.  Same as the AFG and IRQ leaks - what they show may be interesting, but what we don't seek/know may make a HUGE difference in what they mean.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 28, 2010, 16:05:40
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


WikiLeaks reveals undiplomatic U.S. critiques
CBC News

LINK  (http://news.sympatico.cbc.ca/home/wikileaks_reveals_undiplomatic_us_critiques/8687068c)

A large batch of U.S. diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks and given to several media outlets reveals unflattering views of several world leaders.

Some details of the latest WikiLeaks dump were published Sunday by the weekly German magazine Der Spiegel, which was reportedly placed on newsstands too early.

According to tweets from German-speaking Twitter users who picked up the embargoed issue, Der Spiegel said Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is compared to Hitler in U.S. diplomatic files.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy was nicknamed "the emperor with no clothes" and Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai is described as "driven by paranoia."

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is praised as "Teflon."

A number of other publications, including the French newspaper Le Monde, the New York Times, England's Guardian newspaper and the Spanish newspaper El Pais have been given access to the cache of 250,000 documents and were expected to release details Sunday and throughout the week.

The New York Times said the files cover three years of communications between U.S. diplomats and Washington.

===============================================================================

WikiLeaks Reports Attack on Its Web Site
November 28, 2010, 12:46 pm 
By ROBERT MACKEY
The LEDE

LINK  (http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/11/28/wikileaks-reports-attack-on-its-web-site/)

WikiLeaks, the whistle-blowers’ Web site that has announced plans to begin publishing another tranche of secret American documents, reported on Sunday that its Web site (http://wikileaks.org/) was under attack. The message  posted on Twitter (http://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/8920530488926208) said: “We are currently under a mass distributed denial of service attack.”

No more details about the nature of the denial of service attack (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denial-of-service_attack) have yet been made public, but WikiLeaks.org is currently accessible, about one hour after the Twitter alert was posted.

On Saturday night, the State Department released the text of a letter sent by its legal adviser, Harold Hongju Koh, to Julian Assange, the Web site’s public face, and his lawyer, Jennifer Robinson, concerning its intended publication of secret State Department documents. The full text of the letter, which was posted online by Reuters (http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6AR1E420101128), can be read below.

 
Dear Ms. Robinson and Mr. Assange:

I am writing in response to your 26 November 2010 letter to U.S. Ambassador Louis B. Susman regarding your intention to again publish on your WikiLeaks site what you claim to be classified U.S. Government documents.

As you know, if any of the materials you intend to publish were provided by any government officials, or any intermediary without proper authorization, they were provided in violation of U.S. law and without regard for the grave consequences of this action. As long as WikiLeaks holds such material, the violation of the law is ongoing.

It is our understanding from conversations with representatives from The New York Times, The Guardian and Der Spiegel, that WikiLeaks also has provided approximately 250,000 documents to each of them for publication, furthering the illegal dissemination of classified documents.

Publication of documents of this nature at a minimum would:

* Place at risk the lives of countless innocent individuals — from journalists to human rights activists and bloggers to soldiers to individuals providing information to further peace and security;

* Place at risk on-going military operations, including operations to stop terrorists, traffickers in human beings and illicit arms, violent criminal enterprises and other actors that threaten global security; and,

* Place at risk on-going cooperation between countries – partners, allies and common stakeholders — to confront common challenges from terrorism to pandemic diseases to nuclear proliferation that threaten global stability.

In your letter, you say you want — consistent with your goal of “maximum disclosure” — information regarding individuals who may be “at significant risk of harm” because of your actions.

Despite your stated desire to protect those lives, you have done the opposite and endangered the lives of countless individuals. You have undermined your stated objective by disseminating this material widely, without redaction, and without regard to the security and sanctity of the lives your actions endanger. We will not engage in a negotiation regarding the further release or dissemination of illegally obtained U.S. Government classified materials. If you are genuinely interested in seeking to stop the damage from your actions, you should: 1) ensure WikiLeaks ceases publishing any and all such materials; 2) ensure WikiLeaks returns any and all classified U.S. Government material in its possession; and 3) remove and destroy all records of this material from WikiLeaks’ databases.

.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 28, 2010, 16:16:10
From SPIEGEL ONLINE:


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

The US Diplomatic Leaks
A Superpower's View of the World
11/28/2010
By SPIEGEL Staff

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,731580,00.html)

251,000 State Department documents, many of them secret embassy reports from around the world, show how the US seeks to safeguard its influence around the world. It is nothing short of a political meltdown for US foreign policy.

What does the United States really think of German Chancellor Angela Merkel? Is she a reliable ally? Did she really make an effort to patch up relations with Washington that had been so damaged by her predecessor? At most, it was a half-hearted one.

The tone of trans-Atlantic relations may have improved, former US Ambassador to Germany William Timken wrote in a cable to the State Department at the end of 2006, but the chancellor "has not taken bold steps yet to improve the substantive content of the relationship." That is not exactly high praise.

And the verdict on German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle? His thoughts "were short on substance," wrote the current US ambassador in Berlin, Philip Murphy, in a cable. The reason, Murphy suggested, was that "Westerwelle's command of complex foreign and security policy issues still requires deepening."

Such comments are hardly friendly. But in the eyes of the American diplomatic corps, every actor is quickly categorized as a friend or foe. King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia? A friend: Abdullah can't stand his neighbors in Iran and, expressing his disdain for the mullah regime, said, "there is no doubt something unstable about them." And his ally, Sheikh bin Zayed of Abu Dhabi? Also a friend. He believes "a near term conventional war with Iran is clearly preferable to the long term consequences of a nuclear armed Iran."

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's emissaries also learn of a special "Iran observer" in the Azerbaijan capital of Baku who reports on a dispute that played out during a meeting of Iran's Supreme National Security Council. An enraged Revolutionary Guard Chief of Staff Mohammed Ali Jafari allegedly got into a heated argument with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and slapped him in the face because the generally conservative president had, surprisingly, advocated freedom of the press.

A Political Meltdown

Such surprises from the annals of US diplomacy will dominate the headlines in the coming days when the New York Times, London's Guardian, Paris' Le Monde, Madrid's El Pais and SPIEGEL begin shedding light on the treasure trove of secret documents from the State Department. Included are 243,270 diplomatic cables filed by US embassies to the State Department and 8,017 directives that the State Department sent to its diplomatic outposts around the world. In the coming days, the participating media will show in a series of investigative stories how America seeks to steer the world. The development is no less than a political meltdown for American foreign policy.

Never before in history has a superpower lost control of such vast amounts of such sensitive information -- data that can help paint a picture of the foundation upon which US foreign policy is built. Never before has the trust America's partners have in the country been as badly shaken. Now, their own personal views and policy recommendations have been made public -- as have America's true views of them.

For example, one can learn that German Defense Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, the Germany's most beloved politician according to public opinion polls, openly criticizes fellow cabinet member Guido Westerwelle in conversations with US diplomats, and even snitches on him. Or that Secretary of State Clinton wants her ambassadors in Moscow and Rome to inform her whether there is anything to the rumors that Italian President Silvio Berlusconi and Vladimir Putin have private business ties in addition to their close friendship -- whispers that both have vehemently denied.

America's ambassadors can be merciless in their assessments of the countries in which they are stationed. That's their job. Kenya? A swamp of flourishing corruption extending across the country. Fifteen high-ranking Kenyan officials are already banned from traveling to the United States, and almost every single sentence in the embassy reports speaks with disdain of the government of President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga.

Weighing Public Interest against Confidentiality

Turkey hardly comes away any less scathed in the cables. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the cables allege, governs with the help of a cabal of incompetent advisors. Ankara Embassy officials depict a country on a path to an Islamist future -- a future that likely won't include European Union membership.

As with the close to 92,000 documents on the war in Afghanistan at the end of July and the almost 400,000 documents on the Iraq war recently released, the State Department cables have also been leaked to the WikiLeaks whistleblower platform -- and they presumably came from the same source. As before, WikiLeaks has provided the material to media partners to review and analyze them.

With a team of more than 50 reporters and researchers, SPIEGEL has viewed, analyzed and vetted the mass of documents. In most cases, the magazine has sought to protect the identities of the Americans' informants, unless the person who served as the informant was senior enough to be politically relevant. In some cases, the US government expressed security concerns and SPIEGEL accepted a number of such objections. In other cases, however, SPIEGEL felt the public interest in reporting the news was greater than the threat to security. Throughout our research, SPIEGEL reporters and editors weighed the public interest against the justified interest of countries in security and confidentiality.

It is now possible to view many political developments around the world through the lens of those who participated in those events. As such, our understanding of those events is deeply enriched. That alone is often enough to place transparency ahead of national regulations regarding confidentiality.

Following the leaks of military secrets from Afghanistan and Iraq, these leaks now put US diplomats on the hot seat. It is the third coup for WikiLeaks within six months, and it is one that is likely to leave Washington feeling more than a bit exposed. Around half of the cables that have been obtained aren't classified and slightly less, 40.5 percent, as classified as "confidential." Six percent of the reports, or 16,652 cables, are labelled as "secret;" and of those, 4,330 are so explosive that they are labelled "NOFORN," meaning access should not be made available to non-US nationals. Taken together, the cables provide enough raw text to fill 66 years worth of weekly SPIEGEL magazines.

Gossip and the Unvarnished Truth

Much in the material was noted and sent because those compiling the reports or their dialogue partners believed, with some certainty, that their transcripts would not be made public for the next 25 years. That may also explain why the ambassadors and emissaries from Washington were so willing to report gossip and hearsay back to State Department headquarters. One cable from the Moscow Embassy on Russian first lady Svetlana Medvedev, for example, states that she is "generating tensions between the camps and remains the subject of avid gossip." It then goes on to report that President Medvedev's wife had already drawn up a list of officials who should be made to "suffer" in their careers because they had been disloyal to Medvedev. Another reports that the wife of Azerbaijan leader Ilham Aliyev has had so much plastic surgery that it is possible to confuse her for one of her daughters from a distance, but that she can barely still move her face.

What makes the documents particularly appealing, though, is that many politicians speak the unvarnished truth, confident as they are that their musings will never be made public.

What, though, do the thousands of documents prove? Do they really show a US which has the world on a leash? Are Washington's embassies still self-contained power centers in their host countries?

In sum, probably not. In the major crisis regions, an image emerges of a superpower that can no longer truly be certain of its allies -- like in Pakistan, where the Americans are consumed by fear that the unstable nuclear power could become precisely the place where terrorists obtain dangerous nuclear material.

There are similar fears in Yemen, where the US, against its better judgement, allows itself to be instrumentalized by an unscrupulous leader. With American military aid that was intended for the fight against al-Qaida, Ali Abdullah Saleh is now able to wage his battle against enemy tribes in the northern part of the country.

Insult to Injury

Even after the fall of Saddam Hussein, it still remained a challenge for the victorious power to assert its will on Iraq. In Baghdad, which has seen a series of powerful US ambassadors -- men the international press often like to refer to as American viceroys -- it is now up to Vice President Joe Biden to make repeated visits to allied Iraqi politicians in an effort to get them to finally establish a respectable democracy. But the embassy cables make it very clear that Obama's deputy has made little headway.

Instead, the Americans are forced to endure the endless tirades of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarek, who claims to have always known that the Iraq war was the "biggest mistake ever committed" and who advised the Americans to "forget about democracy in Iraq." Once the US forces depart, Mubarak said, the best way to ensure a peaceful transition is for there to be a military coup. They are statements that add insult to injury.

On the whole, the cables from the Middle East expose the superpower's weaknesses. Washington has always viewed it as vital to its survival to secure its share of energy reserves, but the world power is often quickly reduced to becoming a plaything of diverse interests. And it is drawn into the animosities between Arabs and Israelis, Shiites and Sunnis, between Islamists and secularists, between despots and kings. Often enough, the lesson of the documents that have now been obtained, is that the Arab leaders use their friends in Washington to expand their own positions of power.

Editor's note: DER SPIEGEL's full reporting on the WikiLeaks US diplomatic cables will be published first in the German-language edition of the magazine, which will be available on Monday to subscribers and at newsstands in Germany and Europe. SPIEGEL ONLINE International will publish extended excerpts of SPIEGEL's reporting in English in a series that will launch on Monday
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on November 28, 2010, 16:24:30

WikiLeaks Reports Attack on Its Web Site
This from Twitter (http://twitter.com/th3j35t3r/status/8957331047976960) re:  the "can't get thru to Wikileaks"....
Quote
www.wikileaks.org - TANGO DOWN - for attempting to endanger the lives of our troops, 'other assets' & foreign relations #wikileaks #fail #js


More from "The Jester" (who, in the past, has claimed responsibility for blocking jihadi forums and web pages 20-30 minutes at a time) :
http://twitter.com/th3j35t3r
and
http://th3j35t3r.wordpress.com/
and about the Jester:
http://information-security-resources.com/2010/02/04/2010/01/27/q-a-with-anti-jihadi-hacker-the-jester/
http://information-security-resources.com/2010/02/04/more-talks-with-anti-jihadi-hacker-the-jester/

Heh, heh, heh...
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 28, 2010, 16:40:55
From BBC:


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


Wikileaks cables: key issues
28 November 2010 Last updated at 14:38 ET
BBC

LINK  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11858990)

The controversial whistle-blowing site Wilileaks has released a cache of 250,000 secret messages sent by US diplomatic staff. Here are some of the key issues the documents reveal, as reported by the New York Times and Guardian newspapers.

Pakistan stand-off

The cables show US concern over radioactive material in nuclear power stations in Pakistan, with fears it could be used in terror attacks. They reveal the US has been attempting to remove highly enriched uranium from a research reactor in Pakistan since 2007.

In a May 2009 cable, US ambassador Anne W Patterson says Pakistan had refused a visit from US experts. She quotes a Pakistani officials as saying removing the fuel would be seen in Pakistan "as the United States taking Pakistan's nuclear weapons".

China hacking

There is concern over the alleged growing use of large scale computer hacking by the Chinese government. Cables reports claims that a network of hackers and private security experts has been employed by China since 2002and that it has hacked into US government and business computers, those of Western allies and the Dalai Lama.

The cables quote a Chinese contact telling the US embassy in Beijing that the Chinese government had been behind the hacking of Google's computer systems in the country in January.

Iran attack

Several Arab leaders and their representatives are quoted as urging the US to carry out an attack on Iran to bring an end to its suspected nuclear weapons programme.

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia is reported to have "frequently exhorted" the US to attack Iran in order to bring an end to its nuclear programme.

In a report of a 2008 meeting with US General David Petraeus, the Saudi ambassador to Washington, Adel al-Jubeir, said King Abdullah wanted the US to "to cut the head off the snake".

King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa of Bahrain is reported to have told the US to stop Iran "by whatever means necessary", while the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed, told the US he believed Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was "going to take us to war".

Biometric spying on UN

A cable to US diplomats issued under US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's name tells them to collect "biographic and biometric" information - including iris scans, DNA samples and fingerprints - on key officials at the UN. They are also ordered to find credit card details, email addresses and passwords and encryption keys used for computer networks and in official communications.

The officials covered include "undersecretaries, heads of specialised agencies and their chief advisers, top SYG [secretary general] aides, heads of peace operations and political field missions, including force commanders".

At least nine similar directives covering various countries are included in the Wikileaks release, both under the name of Mrs Clinton and her predecessor, Condoleezza Rice.

Korea plans

US and South Korean officials have discussed plans for a united Korea, should North Korea collapse.

The US ambassador to Seoul said South Korea would consider offering commercial incentives to China to "help salve" Beijing "concerns about living with a reunified Korea".

Guantanamo

The cables appear to reveal discussions between various countries on whether they would take prisoners released from the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.

Slovenia is offered the chance to meet President Barack Obama if it takes a prisoner, while Kiribati, in the South Pacific, is offered millions of dollars of incentives. Brussels is told taking prisoners could be "a low-cost way for Belgium to attain prominence in Europe".

World leaders

Various world leaders are covered by the documents - showing the diplomats' less than flattering views of them.

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is referred to as "feckless, vain, and ineffective as a modern European leader" by a US diplomat in Rome.

In 2008, the Moscow embassy describes Russian President Dmitry Medvedev as playing "Robin to (Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's) Batman.

The cables also comment on the extremely close relationship between Mr Berlusconi and Mr Putin.

North Korea's Kim Jong-il is a "flabby old chap" suffering from trauma from a stroke, while Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is referred to as "Hitler".

South Africa's international relations and cooperation minister refers to President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe as "the crazy old man".

========================================================================

Wikileaks release of embassy cables reveals US concerns
28 November 2010 Last updated at 15:15 ET
BBC

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,731580,00.html)

Whistle-blowing website Wikileaks has released 250,000 secret messages sent by US embassies which give an insight into current American global concerns.

They include reports of some Arab leaders - including Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah - urging the US to attack Iran and end its nuclear weapons programme.

Other concerns include the security of Pakistani nuclear material that could be used to make an atomic weapon.

The widespread use of hacking by the Chinese government is also reported.

The US government condemned the release of the documents, saying they put the lives of diplomats and others at risk.

The founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange, countered by saying the US authorities were afraid of being held to account.

The leaked US embassy cables, published at length in newspapers including the New York Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/29/world/29cables.html?hp) and the UK's Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/nov/28/us-embassy-cable-leak-diplomacy-crisis), also reportedly include accounts of:

- Iran attempting to adapt North Korean rockets for use as long-range missiles

- Corruption within the Afghan government, with concerns heightened when a senior official was found to be carrying more than $50m in cash on a foreign trip

- Bargaining to empty the Guantanamo Bay prison camp - including Slovenian diplomats being told to take in a freed prisoner if they wanted to secure a meeting with President Barack Obama

- Germany being warned in 2007 not to enforce arrest warrants for US Central Intelligence Agency officers involved in an operation in which an innocent German citizen with the same name as a suspected militant was abducted and held in Afghanistan

- US officials being instructed to spy on the UN's leadership by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

- The very close relationship between Russian PM Vladimir Putin and his Italian counterpart Silvio Berlusconi

- Alleged links between the Russian government and organised crime

- Yemen's president talking to then US Mid-East commander General David Petraeus about attacks on Yemeni al-Qaeda bases and saying: "We'll continue saying the bombs are ours, not yours"

- Criticism of UK politicians including Prime Minister David Cameron

- Faltering US attempts to prevent Syria from supplying arms to Hezbollah in Lebanon

- The leaked embassy cables are both contemporary and historical, and include a 1989 note from a US diplomat in Panama City musing about the options open to Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega and referring to him as "a master of survival" - the author apparently had no idea that US forces would invade a week later and arrest Noriega.

In a statement, the White House said: "Such disclosures put at risk our diplomats, intelligence professionals, and people around the world who come to the United States for assistance in promoting democracy and open government.

"President Obama supports responsible, accountable, and open government at home and around the world, but this reckless and dangerous action runs counter to that goal."

Earlier, Wikileaks said it had come under attack from a computer-hacking operation.

"We are currently under a mass distributed denial of service attack," it reported on its Twitter feed.

No-one has been charged with passing the diplomatic files to the website but suspicion has fallen on US Army private Bradley Manning, an intelligence analyst arrested in Iraq in June and charged over an earlier leak of classified US documents to Mr Assange's organisation.

Wikileaks argues that the site's previous releases shed light on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on November 28, 2010, 17:03:47
<related tangent>
And if you don't think people will die from Wikileaks, this, from a Taliban mouthpiece, following the Afghan Wikileaks document diarrhea:
Quote
…. Qari Yousef Ahmadi, a spokesman for the Taliban told the Daily Telegraph. "We read everything and we will read these documents.  "We will look for the names of people, but it will be a judge who decides. We won't act unless we are 100 per cent sure. We are not just going to trust these documents, we will make our own inquiries.  "I cannot tell you what the judge will do." ….
Any guesses what a Taliban judge will do to what they consider a spy?  I'm guessing no house arrest for them....
</related tangent>
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 28, 2010, 17:06:33
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


U.S. braces for diplomatic crisis over leaked files
28/11/2010 3:02:56 PM
CTV.ca News Staff
 

LINK  (http://news.sympatico.ctv.ca/home/us_braces_for_diplomatic_crisis_over_leaked_files/295bc319)

The United States rushed into damage control Sunday as media around the world began reporting on thousands of classified diplomatic documents set to be released by WikiLeaks.

The White House said WikiLeaks had committed a "reckless and dangerous action" that threatened the lives of officials.

The documents, numbering more than 250,000, use unsparing language when describing foes and friends alike. In the weeks leading up to the release, the U.S. State Department had contacted countries -- including Canada -- to mitigate the potential fallout.

Among the revelations contained in the files:

Allegations that the Russian government has ties to organized crime
Fears over enriched uranium in a Pakistani nuclear reactor
Deals with countries like Slovenia to take Guantanamo Bay detainees upon release
WikiLeaks gave the leaked documents to a few news organizations, including Britain's Guardian newspaper and the New York Times, weeks ahead of the release. That meant stories emerged even as WikiLeaks said its website came under an apparent cyber attack meant to delay release of the files.

One potentially damaging revelation is that U.S. diplomats were ordered to gather the personal information of foreign dignitaries -- essentially doing the work of spies.

According to the New York Times, one U.S. State Department cable asked diplomats abroad to look for "internet and intranet ‘handles', internet e-mail addresses, web site identification-URLs; credit card account numbers; frequent-flier account numbers; work schedules, and other relevant biographical information."

Another cable says U.S. officials should also gather "biographic and biometric information" at the United Nations headquarters.

The leaked documents also give a glimpse into the frank language used by diplomats, as they report back to the U.S. State Department on countries and foreign leaders.

Germany's Der Spiegel, another publication given access to the files, reports that one document describes the relationship between Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Medvedev is described as "pale and hesitant" and lacking the "bravado" of the other man.

Meanwhile, French President Nicolas Sarkozy is called the "emperor of no clothes," Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is likened to Hitler, and Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai is called paranoid.


VIDEO on LINK  (http://news.sympatico.ctv.ca/home/us_braces_for_diplomatic_crisis_over_leaked_files/295bc319)


Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on November 28, 2010, 17:16:52
And a bit information on the scale of Canadian content, from QMI/Sun Media (http://www.torontosun.com/news/canada/2010/11/28/16350871.html):
Quote
Nearly 2,000 diplomatic cables from the U.S. embassy in Ottawa are among the quarter-million pieces of sensitive diplomatic correspondence obtained by the group WikiLeaks and being dribbled out this week.

There are 1,958 diplomatic cables from the embassy in Ottawa included in the information that has either been released or is expected to be released through the coming week. In addition to the notes from the embassy, there are hundreds of cables from American consulates across Canada – 145 from Toronto, 136 from Halifax, 82 from Montreal, 52 from Quebec City, 44 from Vancouver and 14 from Calgary ....
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: IBM on November 28, 2010, 18:53:01
Ha, I knew it was just a matter of time before something like this got out:

http://www.businessinsider.com/galyna-kolotnytska-2010-11

If Assange's true goal is to beat the paparazzi at their own game, he's certainly done it. lol ;D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on November 28, 2010, 19:02:29
I am loving these leaks. Especially the NOFORN. Guilty pleasure. Best locker room gossip ever.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on November 28, 2010, 21:40:10
Heh....they all do...

Obama ordered diplomats to spy on Canada
By BRIAN LILLEY, Parliamentary Bureau November 28, 2010
Article Link (http://www.ottawasun.com/news/canada/2010/11/28/16351391.html)
 
OTTAWA - The Obama administration ordered diplomats to spy on foreign governments and dignitaries – including here in Canada – as a way to provide key biographical data to the Central Intelligence Agency.

The July 2009 directive to embassies around the world, including the one in Ottawa, asked diplomats to go beyond collecting the usual information of name, title and phone number. Diplomats were also asked to pass along “Internet and intranet ‘handles,’ Internet e-mail addresses, web site identification-URLs, credit card account numbers, frequent flyer account numbers, work schedules and other relevant biographical information.”

The directive was one of thousands of diplomatic cables made public Sunday by WikiLeaks and media partners the New York Times, the Guardian and Der Spiegel.

In addition to that very personal information, the directive also asked American diplomats to gather the views of their hosts or other dignitaries on a whole range of issues from hot security topics such as Darfur, Afghanistan and North Korea to issues such as climate change policy ahead of the Copenhagen negotiations that took place late last year.

The news that President Barack Obama and his secretary of state Hillary Clinton wanted diplomats to spy on their Canadian hosts could strain the relationship between the U.S. embassy and Parliament Hill, especially in the short term.

“Long-standing relations such as those with Canada and the U.K. will no doubt weather the storm. Relationships that are troubled, such as those with Turkey and Russia, could see some resettling,” said James Jay Carafano, a foreign policy expert with Washington’s Heritage Foundation.

Carafano told QMI Agency that if there is credible evidence that Turkish officials gave material support to al-Qaida or that the U.S. was secretly negotiating side deals on missile defence with Russia, the White House will have some explaining to do.
More on link
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on November 28, 2010, 22:53:31
I am loving these leaks. Especially the NOFORN. Guilty pleasure. Best locker room gossip ever.

Got a link? I don't like indulging these sensationalist idiots, but reading some of the stuff would sure be laugh-worthy.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on November 29, 2010, 10:15:07
http://cablegate.wikileaks.org/

It's like all those unflattering things your best friend told the wife about his mother in law got posted on the internet. Not many real secrets to be had. But interesting none the less.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on November 29, 2010, 11:03:51
Where the WikiLeaks likely came from-and what they show
http://unambig.com/where-the-wikileaks-likely-came-from/

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 29, 2010, 19:44:46
Was he wrong?

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


CSIS ex-chief slams courts, Canadians: WikiLeaks
29/11/2010 6:01:57 PM
CBC News
 

LINK  (http://news.sympatico.cbc.ca/home/csis_ex-chief_slams_courts_canadians_wikileaks/30ee7cc2)

A U.S. official reported that former CSIS director Jim Judd said Canadians and their courts had an "Alice in Wonderland" worldview, according to a 2008 U.S. diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks.

Judd and the U.S. official were discussing threats posed by violent Islamist groups in Canada, as well as recent developments in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

In the cable, which was sent by the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa to the U.S. government, the official states that Judd said Canadian judges have "CSIS 'in knots,' making it ever more difficult to detect and prevent terror attacks in Canada and abroad."

Judd said the situation "left government security agencies on the defensive and losing public support for their effort to protect Canada and its allies," the cable states.

The cable is one of hundreds of thousands of cables released by the website WikiLeaks.

The dispatch goes on to state that Judd "derided" recent Canadian court judgments that threaten foreign governments' intelligence-sharing with Canada.

"These judgments posit that Canadian authorities cannot use information that 'may have been' derived from torture, and that any Canadian public official who conveys such information may be subject to criminal prosecution," the cable says.

Judd credited Prime Minister Stephen Harper's minority Conservative government for " 'taking it on the chin and pressing ahead' with common sense measures despite court challenges and political knocks from the opposition and interest groups," according to the document.

The cable said that Judd stated CSIS had responded to recent, non-specific intelligence on possible terror operations by "vigorously harassing" known Hezbollah members in Canada.

Judd also said that sections of a court-ordered release of a DVD of Guantanamo detainee and Canadian citizen Omar Khadr "would likely show three ... adults interrogating a kid who breaks down in tears."

Judd stated that the video "would no doubt trigger knee-jerk anti-Americanism" and "paroxysms of moral outrage, a Canadian specialty," the cable said.

Judd was the director of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service from 2004 to 2009.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: tomahawk6 on November 29, 2010, 20:21:41
The State Department and Obama's administration is not shown in the best light by these cables.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MARS on November 29, 2010, 21:00:11
The State Department and Obama's administration is not shown in the best light by these cables.

Canada, and those Canadians who are taking pleasure in reading these, should just thank their lucky stars our own cables back to Ottawa aren't  being released.  Jebus Christ, what do people think diplomats talk about in confidential cables?  The f***ing weather?    These are diplomats.  Their JOB is to communicate.  With other nations and, as importantly, with their superiors -  in the most honest and straightforward manner possible.


It makes me sick that people are :

a) surprised/shocked/aghast; and
b) in any way "happy" to see these

I feel for the US administration right now, as I would for my own government if the situation was reversed.

Sorry for the rant, I have been bumping into troglodytes all day long who are surprised by the content.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ModlrMike on November 29, 2010, 21:16:36
The world needs to understand that Wikileaks is more about giving the US a bloody nose, than any high moral principle masquerading as the "the right to know".
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on November 29, 2010, 21:28:37
Canada, and those Canadians who are taking pleasure in reading these, should just thank their lucky stars our own cables back to Ottawa aren't  being released.  Jebus Christ, what do people think diplomats talk about in confidential cables?  The f***ing weather?    These are diplomats.  Their JOB is to communicate.  With other nations and, as importantly, with their superiors -  in the most honest and straightforward manner possible.


It makes me sick that people are :

a) surprised/shocked/aghast; and
b) in any way "happy" to see these

I feel for the US administration right now, as I would for my own government if the situation was reversed.

Right on the money.....
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 29, 2010, 21:41:25
Interesting news video report on this link:


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


Who is behind the leaked US cables disclosed by Wikileaks?
29 November 2010 Last updated at 14:04 ET
BBC News
 

LINK  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11869988)

The publication of confidential US diplomatic cables by Wikileaks has been criticised by governments including Britain, America and Pakistan

Suspicion about the leaks has fallen on one man - US Army Private Bradley Manning.

Currently, he is in military custody over the leaking of material from Iraq and Afghanistan.

Gordon Corera reports.


 Video report on LINK   (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11869988)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on November 30, 2010, 00:00:47
So far the leaks I've seen haven't surprised me the least, or seemed very important, random even. This seems more or less like another attempt at "bashing" America and to embarrass it.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on November 30, 2010, 03:06:39
Wikileaks a U.S. plot, says Ahmadinejad

Iran's president has labelled WikiLeaks disclosures that Arab states demanded that the United States attack his country as an orchestrated attempt by Washington to destabilize the Middle East.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has led Tehran's resistance to sanctions against its nuclear program, suggested that WikiLeaks was an American tool to plant misinformation around the world.

Reports that the leaders of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states had repeatedly pressed U.S. officials to strike against Iran were ridiculed as an effort to pit the country against its "Arab brothers".

"Let me first correct you. The material was not leaked, but rather released in an organized way," Mr Ahmadinejad told a press conference.

"We don't give any value to these documents. It's without legal value. Iran and regional states are friends. Such acts of mischief have no impact on relations between nations."

According to the documents, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia urged America to "cut the head of the snake", while the leaders of Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates also urged a military solution. The Sunni Muslim monarchies fear that a nuclear-capable Shia Muslim state would wield supremacy in the Middle East.

Stung by the leaking of the revelations, their governments maintained a wall of silence Monday, fearful of a backlash for advocating military action in a region still resentful of the U.S. war in Iraq.

However, analysts said the reported comments were a true gauge of anxiety over a strong Iran.

"I think it confirms that the [Gulf] states are all more united on the anti-Iranian front than previously disclosed," said Theodore Karasik, a Dubai-based analyst.

Khaled al-Dakhil, a Saudi security expert, said Iran should take the revelations as a warning that its neighbours were exhausted by its aggressive foreign policy. "I don't think Iran takes at face value public declarations coming from the Gulf, whether for a war or not - just as Gulf leaders do not believe declarations about how peaceful the Iranian nuclear program is," he said.

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's prime minister, was one of the few government leaders to discuss the detail of the leaks, warning that U.S. diplomatic exchanges with allies including Israel could be scaled back as a result of the leak.

He anticipated potential embarrassment for Arab leadership. "There is usually a gap between what is said in public and what is said in private. In Israel, the gaps aren't so large, but in some of the other countries in the region the gaps are very large," Mr Netanyahu said. "Leaders should be ready to tell their people the truth."

But Israel also expressed satisfaction that its position on Iran had been vindicated. "We come out looking very good," a senior government official. "They [the leaked documents] confirm that the whole Middle East is terrified by the prospect of a nuclear Iran."

link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Wikileaks+plot+says+Ahmadinejad/3902063/story.html#ixzz16kMBSskl)
                  (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 30, 2010, 14:22:16
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Paging Maxwell Smart
Juicy WikiLeaks snooping details shows ‘intelligence community’ is an oxymoron

By WARREN KINSELLA, QMI Agency
Last Updated: November 30, 2010 1:00am
Winnipeg Sun
 
LINK  (http://www.winnipegsun.com/comment/columnists/2010/11/29/16364736.html)

When you take a gander at the mountain of classified U.S. documents WikiLeaks offered up on Sunday, you are inevitably left pondering the phrase “intelligence community.”

Turns out, it’s an oxymoron.

The “intelligence community,” clearly, is neither “intelligent” nor a “community.”

In fact, when you ponder what America’s top spies are pondering, it’s not so amazing that Osama bin Laden has escaped capture for more than a decade. The alleged Maxwell Smarts overseeing America’s intelligence-gathering aren’t particularly smart — and they have a tenuous grasp on that important allies/enemies distinction, too.

What else are we to make of a July 2009 State Department cable sent to American diplomats based at that nation’s fortified embassy in Ottawa, blandly urging them to spy on us, their allies? Us, their biggest trading partner — you know, the ones who recently acceded to their pleas we remain on the battlefields of Afghanistan for a few more years?

Us, whose prime minister rolls over to get his belly scratched by the White House so regularly he should be kennelled alongside Bo, the presidential pooch?

One secret document directs U.S. diplomats to “include as much of the following information as possible” about Canadian officials — including “numbers of telephones, cellphones, pagers and faxes ... Internet and Intranet ‘handles,’ Internet e-mail addresses, website identification-URLs; credit card account numbers; frequent flyer account numbers; work schedules, and other relevant biographical information.”

Hey, um, Mr. President? If we object to our American allies cataloguing our critically important “frequent flyer account numbers,” does that mean we’re now with the terrorists?

More to the point, does Osama bin Laden have a “work schedule” that will finally assist you and your crack team of intelligence experts to dispatch him, so we can finally bring our troops home?

(Missing from the WikiLeaks leaks, surprisingly, was the Top Secret cable describing how — if you ask him to completely reverse himself and commit to a few more years of war — Liberal foreign affairs expert Bob Rae will fold like a cheap suit.)

Tellingly, the U.S. government got word WikiLeaks was going to dump hundreds of thousands of supposedly sensitive documents on the Internet from, well, WikiLeaks. The Americans said “countless” lives would be put at risk by disclosure, so they got very angry. They got very tough.

They had one of their lawyers send WikiLeaks a sternly worded letter!

To the surprise of none of us holding Top Secret “frequent flyer account numbers,” that didn’t work. Back in the good old days of the Bush regime, the White House would have bombed WikiLeaks’ HQ. Now it sends lawyer’s letters. Wow.

My 15-year-old daughter safeguards her Facebook account better than these clowns protect national security. These goofs make the Austin Powers movies look like a documentary.

When one eyeballs WikiLeaks’ stuff — when you actually read some of the idiocy that masquerades as “intelligence” within the U.S. intelligence establishment — I wouldn’t be astonished to learn the al-Qaida boss is now in the U.S., selling timeshares in Florida.

But wherever bin Laden is — possibly still holed up in a cave somewhere with cable and an Xbox — you can be sure of one thing this week.

He’s laughing his *** off.

— Kinsella is a lawyer, consultant and Liberal Party spin-doctor. He blogs at warrenkinsella.com

warren.kinsella@sunmedia.ca

=====================================================

Ummmmm?   Warren?  Do you have a Rolodex or file index somewhere where you keep the names and contact numbers of all your important friends/clients/contacts?  I'm sure you do.  I am just as sure that the President of the United States of America does as well, and he would like to ensure that the information is current.


WikiLeaks is causing a lot of consternation over trivia.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 30, 2010, 20:35:37
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

WikiLeaks Diplomatic Cables (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/wikileaks_diplomatic_cables/)
A 'Teflon' Chancellor and 'Wildcard' Foreign Minister


How America Views the Germans

By Jan Friedmann, John Goetz, Ralf Neukirch, Marcel Rosenbach and Holger Stark
Spiegel Online
 
LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,731645,00.html)

The State Department dispatches that have now been released show just how critically the US views Germany. They see Chancellor Merkel as "risk averse" and Foreign Minister Westerwelle as a "wild card." The US Embassy in Berlin has informants at all levels of German government.

The secret informant who handed over internal documents from German coalition negotiations to the Americans in October 2009 doesn't want his cover blown. And the US has been careful to protect his identity. They simply call him "a well-placed source."

The source is a member of the business-friendly Free Democrats (FDP), the junior coalition partner to Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party. Philip Murphy, the US ambassador in Berlin, describes him as a "young, up-and-coming party loyalist. The cable is numbered 229153, it was sent on Oct. 9, 2009 and is marked "confidential." Murphy never thought that it could be made public.

The cable was sent just 12 days following German general elections and German Chancellor Angela Merkel was in the process of negotiating a governing coalition with FDP Chairman Guido Westerwelle. Germany was in the process of charting a new course, and it now looks like the US government was a fly on the wall. Murphy, the cables make clear, was proud of that fact.

On Oct. 7, the informant met with US diplomats. He had brought along a stack of internal documents: lists of working groups and their members, schedules and handwritten memos. He had also noted who had said what during the meetings -- he had been tasked by the FDP with keeping minutes of the talks.

He told the Americans that there had been an internal argument over disarmament, and that Westerwelle wanted to see the United States remove its nuclear weapons from German soil. Then Interior Minister Wolfgang Schäuble, of Merkel's Christian Democrats, countered that the weapons serve as a deterrent against Iran. Westerwelle, according to the informant, had answered that this wasn't true, because the nuclear warheads couldn't even reach Iran. Merkel, Murphy writes in his memo, eventually cut off the debate by pointing out that German unilateralism on disarmament would lead nowhere.

'Happy to Share His Observations'

The FDP's subsequent anger with Schäuble was intense. The source said that Schäuble was "neurotic" and "saw threats everywhere." The FDP, he later added, viewed him as "an angry old man" who sought to portray himself as the CDU's "grey eminence" in order to expand his influence. The FDP informant hoped that the CDU would also view Schäuble's role as "counterproductive." At the end of the meeting, he handed over several copies of documents from his files on the coalition negotiations. "Post will seek meetings with source after the plenary negotiation rounds to see if additional readouts are possible," an obviously satisfied Murphy cabled to Washington.

The unknown German government informant must be bold and unscrupulous, or perhaps merely naïve and power hungry. Who knows exactly what motivates a party employee to reveal the details of his party's coalition negotiations to US diplomats?

_________________________________________________________________________________________
AN INTERACTIVE ATLAS OF THE DIPLOMATIC CABLES

A time lapse of 251,287 documents: The world map shows where the majority of the cables originated from, and where they had the highest level of classification. (http://www.spiegel.de/flash/flash-24861.html)
_________________________________________________________________________________________

Murphy did his best to provide an explanation to his boss, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The source, he writes, had "offered (the embassy employee) internal party documents in the past. Excited with his role as FDP negotiations note taker, he seemed happy to share his observations and insights and read to us directly from his notes."

A few days later, on Oct. 15, the informant was ready to deliver his next batch of information. This time he had brought along a list of 15 items that the FDP wanted to see included in the coalition agreement. Once again they included calls for "entering negotiations with our allies" over the withdrawal of nuclear weapons from Germany in the near future. How important is nuclear disarmament to Westerwelle, the US diplomats asked? Very important, the FDP source responded. He also said, though, that Westerwelle wanted to do Merkel the favor of enabling her to be elected chancellor before she traveled to Washington November 2.

Details of the German Decision-Making Process

Once again, Murphy sends off a dispatch to Washington -- the confidential cable is titled: "Germany Could Have New Coalition Government Within Two Weeks." It is coded "Noforn," meaning it is not to be seen be foreign governments, and is marked priority.

The cables clearly indicate that the source provided the US with details of the German government's decision-making process even before the coalition agreement had been reached. Should Merkel's government now begin searching for a traitor within its own ranks? And how should Berlin react to American diplomats who maintain sources at the upper levels of German politics, behaving at times in Berlin as if they were employees of an intelligence agency?

The two cables from Murphy are part of the most comprehensive leak in the history of diplomacy. They come from within the US State Department, two of a total of 251,287 State Department cables that the organization WikiLeaks has obtained, likely from the same source as the previous documents on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In the wake of the military secrets that made headlines worldwide, most recently in late October, these new revelations focus on the second column of American power politics: diplomacy.

For the US government, it must feel as though they have been robbed of their clothes. The US has been exposed on the marketplace of global politics. The confidential dispatches begin with a cable from Dec. 28, 1966 and end on Feb. 28, 2010. They include situational reports from US Embassies across the globe sent to Washington. Some are also instructions from the State Department sent to its overseas posts. Most of them are from the administration of US President George W. Bush and from the beginning of the presidency of his successor, Barack Obama. Just from the year 2008, the year of Obama's election victory, there are 49,446 dispatches. A total of 1,719 of them come from the US Embassy in Berlin.

A Network of US Embassy Informants

The emergence of the documents is a disaster of global proportions for US foreign policy, one that will also affect Washington's relations with Berlin. Faith in the Americans' ability to protect their diplomatic traffic is deeply shaken -- that alone will change German-American relations. A superpower's diplomacy has never been revealed to quite the same degree.

But the secret documents also paint a picture of a political landscape in Germany covered by a network of US Embassy informants that even reaches into the capitals of Germany's states. It is a shameful portrait of a political class that has nothing better to do that to go behind the backs of others with the Americans -- to engage in conspiracy, denunciation and obstruction.

The US diplomats reported back to Washington when Economics Minister Rainer Brüderle complained about Defense Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg. They made note of it when Guttenberg went after Westerwelle yet again, or when SPD General Secretary Andrea Nahles criticized fellow Social Democrat Frank-Walter Steinmeier. The uncomplimentary reports were sent on to Wasthington. The US, the documents make clear, knows more about the secrets of German politics than many a German politician.

The diplomatic cables also reveal something else: The trans-Atlantic relationship is not in very good shape. The US view of German politics is distanced and cautious. American diplomats have never really hit it off with Chancellor Angela Merkel. They discount Horst Seehofer, the chairman of the CDU's Bavarian sister party, the Christian Social Union (CSU), because of his ignorance and populism. They feel that Development Minister Dirk Niebel (FDP) was a strange choice for the post. And Foreign Minister Westerwelle? US envoys are particularly critical of Germany's top diplomat. The secret cables describe him as incompetent, vain and critical of the United States, and as a burden on the trans-Atlantic relationship.

Part 1: How America Views the Germans

Part 2: The German Foreign Minister's 'Lack of Gravitas'  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,731645-2,00.html)

Part 3: American Insight into German Infighting  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,731645-3,00.html)
 
Part 4: America's Trojan Horse in Europe (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,731645-4,00.html)

Part 5: Standard Diplomatic Procedure? (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,731645-5,00.html)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on November 30, 2010, 23:11:20
Well, seems like the Wikileaks is finally going to start losing places to hide in, he's just had an Interpol warrant listed for his arrest:

http://www.interpol.int/public/data/wanted/notices/data/2010/86/2010_52486.asp (http://www.interpol.int/public/data/wanted/notices/data/2010/86/2010_52486.asp)

Good luck flying anywhere, Julian.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on November 30, 2010, 23:17:04
Ecuador offers residency to WikiLeaks founder
By Reuters
Article Link (http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/World/2010/11/30/16371341.html)
 
QUITO - An Ecuadorean government official has invited the founder of the WikiLeaks whistleblower website to live and lecture in the country, days after the site caused an international uproar by releasing additional sensitive U.S. documents.

Deputy Foreign Minister Kintto Lucas told local media that Ecuador was attempting to get in touch with WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange to invite him to the country, praising his work as an investigator.

Ecuador is part of a leftist bloc of governments in South America, including Venezuela and Bolivia, that have been highly critical of U.S. policy in the region.

More than 250,000 State Department cables were obtained by WikiLeaks and given to media groups, which began publishing stories Sunday exposing the inner workings of U.S. diplomacy, including candid and embarrassing assessments of world leaders. WikiLeaks previously had released U.S. documents on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“We are inviting him to give conferences and, if he wants, we have offered him Ecuadorean residency,” Lucas said in an interview published Tuesday in local newspaper Hoy.

Australian citizen Assange’s whereabouts are not known and he is believed to move from country to country. He had been seeking residency in Sweden but is now wanted in that country on sexual abuse charges that the former hacker says are part of a conspiracy against him.

Asked if the offer of residency was a formal invitation from the government, Lucas said, “sure.”

The U.S. government said Monday it deeply regretted the release of any classified information and would tighten security to prevent leaks such as WikiLeaks’ disclosure of a trove of State Department cables. The U.S. Justice Department said it was conducting a criminal investigation of the leaks.
end
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on November 30, 2010, 23:22:18
You would figure Interpol would have grabbed his photo off the internet.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 01, 2010, 11:14:24
Buzz is Wikileaks next target is one of America's big banks and then the Russians. Assange better get a bunker when the Russian stuff drops.

The leaks totally subverted the mainstream media and got the truth out. The USA is shown in a very favourable light. Tough minded guys trying to do whats right in a morally ambiguous world. Sometimes telling the  truth is the best policy. These leaks have done no real damage and you can't pay for publicity this good. This looks like a public relations win so far. Now they just have to stop short of making Assange a martyr and leave it to the FSB. 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Sapplicant on December 01, 2010, 12:22:33
Apparently Tom Flanagan, a former adviser to PM Harper, told the CBC he'd like to see Wikileaks' founder assassinated. (http://news.ca.msn.com/top-stories/cbc-article.aspx?cp-documentid=26581240)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 01, 2010, 14:08:07
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Wikileaks: Pakistan rejects US fears on nuclear arms
1 December 2010 Last updated at 07:08 ET
 
LINK  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11885588)

Pakistan has dismissed fears expressed in US diplomatic cables, released by whistle-blower website Wikileaks, that its nuclear material could fall into the hands of terrorists.

High Commissioner to the UK Wajid Shamsul Hasan said the material had a "foolproof control and command system".

The cables warn Pakistan is rapidly building its nuclear stockpile despite the country's growing instability.

There is also scepticism about whether Pakistan could cut links to militants.

Separately, Interpol has issued a notice asking for information on the whereabouts of Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange.

'Sovereign nation'
 
Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today (http://news.bbc.co.uk/today/hi/default.stm) programme, Mr Hasan said the fears expressed in the cables came "off and on" but added: "We have always been telling them straight forward that [the nuclear weapons] are in secure hands, they don't have to worry about it and we will protect them.

"They are the dearest assets that we have and we'll not allow anything to fall into any adventurer's hands."

In domestic political terms, some of the most damaging material may be about the Pakistan government's stance on the controversial CIA drone programme, targeting militants in the tribal belt.

In public, officials oppose the drone strikes which have killed hundreds - including an unknown number of innocent civilians.

In private, it's a different story, according to a cable from US ambassador Anne Patterson. It says Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani had no objections to a planned drone attack.

"I don't care if they do it, as long as they get the right people," he said. "We'll protest in the National Assembly (parliament) and then ignore it."

In one of the latest cables to be released by Wikileaks, senior UK Foreign Office official Mariot Leslie told US diplomats in September 2009 that Britain had "deep concerns about the safety and security of Pakistan's nuclear weapons".

In another cable seven months earlier, then-US ambassador Anne Patterson told Washington: "Our major concern is not having an Islamic militant steal an entire weapon but rather the chance someone working in the government of Pakistan facilities could gradually smuggle enough material out to eventually make a weapon."

Another cable concerning a US intelligence briefing in 2008 said: "Despite pending economic catastrophe, Pakistan is producing nuclear weapons at a faster rate than any other country in the world."

Mr Hasan said that since the government of President Asif Ali Zardari had come to power 27 months ago "we have had a very successful, foolproof control and command system looking after the nuclear arsenal".

Mr Hasan admitted the leaks were harmful.

"You are dealing with the relationship with states. You have built them over the years and all of a sudden something gets out - it's top secret, it's classified, it harms the relationship," he said.

Mr Hasan also said Pakistan would not accept any US help on nuclear security "because we are a sovereign nation".

Pakistan foreign office spokesman Abdul Basit told Agence France-Presse news agency the fears expressed in the leaks "were misplaced and doubtless fall in the realm of condescension". He said they reflected "historical biases against Pakistan".

In the leaked material Ms Patterson also said there was "no chance" of Pakistan "abandoning support for [militant] groups".

The Pakistan government, she added, saw militant groups "as an important part of its national security apparatus against India".
 The cables question Mr Zardari's relationship with the military  
The US also expressed concern about tensions between the powerful Pakistani army and Mr Zardari.

In material from March 2009, US cables noted that army chief Gen Ashfaq Parvez Kayani might "however reluctantly" put pressure on President Zardari to step down, although he "distrusted [opposition leader] Nawaz [Sharif] even more".

The BBC's Aleem Maqbool in Islamabad says military officials here believe the Wikileaks disclosures are being used as a stick with which to bully Pakistan into giving up its nuclear programme.

But he says there are many observers who will see the concerns raised as valid, particularly considering the tens of thousands of people here whose work is connected to the nuclear programme.

'Red Notice'
 
The US has condemned the Wikileaks disclosures, published by the UK Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/nov/30/wikileaks-cables-pakistan-nuclear-fears) newspaper, as an attack on the world community.
 
On Wednesday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is in Kazakhstan for the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) summit, said she had raised the issue with the leaders she had met and none had expressed any concerns about continuing diplomatic work with the US.

The communications between the US state department and its embassies and consulates around the world were sent between 1966 and 2010.

Wikileaks has so far posted only 291 of the 251,287 messages (http://cablegate.wikileaks.org/) it says it has obtained. However, all of the messages have been made available to five publications, including the New York Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/29/world/29cables.html?hp) and the Guardian.

No-one has been charged with passing them to Wikileaks, but suspicion has fallen on US Army Private Bradley Manning, an intelligence analyst arrested in Iraq in June and charged over an earlier leak of a classified video.

The cables release is the third mass Wikileaks publication of classified documents; it published 77,000 secret US files on the Afghan conflict in July, and 400,000 documents about the Iraq war in October.

Meanwhile, Interpol has issued a "Red Notice" asking people to contact the police if they have any information about Mr Assange's whereabouts.

It said the Australian was wanted for questioning in Sweden over an alleged sex offence, which he has denied.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 01, 2010, 22:09:07
More on the latest from Interpol (http://www.interpol.int/Public/ICPO/PressReleases/PR2010/PR101.asp) (also attached if link doesn't work):
Quote
Sweden authorizes INTERPOL to make public Red Notice for WikiLeaks founder

ASSANGE
Julian Paul

LYON, France - INTERPOL has made public the Red Notice, or international wanted persons alert, for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the request of Swedish authorities who want to question him in connection with a number of sexual offences.

The Red Notice for the 39-year-old Australian, which was issued to law enforcement in all 188 INTERPOL member countries on 20 November, has now been made publicly available by INTERPOL following official authorization by Sweden.

All INTERPOL National Central Bureaus (NCBs) have also been advised to ensure that their border control agencies are made aware of Assange's Red Notice status, which is a request for any country to identify or locate an individual with a view to their provisional arrest and extradition.

Many of INTERPOL's member countries however, consider a Red Notice a valid request for provisional arrest, especially if they are linked to the requesting country via a bilateral extradition treaty. In cases where arrests are made based on a Red Notice, these are made by national police officials in INTERPOL member countries.

INTERPOL cannot demand that any member country arrests the subject of a Red Notice. Any individual wanted for arrest should be considered innocent until proven guilty.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 01, 2010, 22:46:16
I remember when they first called him a child molester. Poor translation from the Swedish. Turns out he was dating two women at once in Sweden. After the two talked to each other charges were laid and them promptly dropped after a very brief investigation. Swedish authorities allowed him to exit the country.  He hasn't been charged and no one bothered to call his lawyer(they had the number) to ask him to a appear for an interview.

Turns out the next leak is a Bank of America hard drive from a senior executive.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 01, 2010, 22:48:23
Ironically, the best thing I'm getting out of this, is where to go for my news. I get to either choose an objective news media hat publishes what they're given, analyzes what they're given, and realizes the overall effect on the world is minimal - having done nothing but shaken up world diplomacy a bit (which it needed); or, I can choose the media that avoids directly confronting the issues, and instead only comments on what cables relate to themselves or has some juicy gossip about Canadians (CBC), or avoids it altogether and instead focuses on demonizing the source (CNN). CNN has Assange as its front page - and spent a good 12-24 hours discussing how he's been placed on Interpol's "Most Wanted List".


If you fail to provide a transparent government, someone else will make it transparent for you.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 01, 2010, 22:52:16
CNN has Assange as its front page - and spent a good 12-24 hours discussing how he's been placed on Interpol's "Most Wanted List".
lol. He's only wanted for questioning.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 02, 2010, 07:42:06
Assange faces 'assassination risk'

LONDON - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is at risk of being assassinated over the release of secret U.S. documents and will remain in hiding for his own security, the website's spokesman said Wednesday.

Spokesman Kristinn Hrafnsson said the Australian's safety was at stake after U.S. politicians called for him to face treason charges and an adviser to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper reportedly said he should be killed.

"We have had threats from governments and commentators, some of them totally preposterous, even calls for the assassination of Julian Assange," Hrafnsson said during a debate at the Frontline Club in London.

"He is justified in being concerned for his safety. When you have people calling, for example, for his assassination, it is best to keep a low profile," he added.

Hrafnsson said Assange's whereabouts would remain secret. He is known to have recently spent time in Sweden and London and is the subject of an Interpol arrest request over a rape allegation in Sweden.

He has faced calls from the United States for his arrest, with Mike Huckabee, a former Republican presidential hopeful, reportedly saying that those responsible for the leaks were guilty of treason and should face execution, CNN reported.

Separately, Tom Flanagan, an adviser to Canada's prime minister, said flippantly in a television interview that Assange "should be assassinated" and that U.S. President Barack Obama "should put out a contract and maybe use a drone."

Hrafnsson, an Icelandic former journalist, defended Assange's decision to remain in hiding and not to face up to the Swedish arrest warrant, saying the timing of the Interpol alert was "curious".

"He is in a secret location and working on the project with a group of our staff. It is necessary in the circumstances to keep his location secret," Hrafnsson said.

The spokesman also pointed to the fact that WikiLeaks was suffering repeated cyber attacks as evidence that it was being targeted.

"We know the interest of the U.S. government in bringing down WikiLeaks," he said.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton accused WikiLeaks on Monday of an "attack on the international community" by releasing the documents, but Hrafnsson insisted that WikiLeaks had done nothing illegal.

"There has been a lot of talk about legal actions taken against Wikileaks and Julian, about how we have done something illegal, that we are criminals, but we have not seen any reference to how we are supposed to have broken the law," he said.
LINK (http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Assange+faces+assassination+risk/3914437/story.html#ixzz16xAtVnYu)
                                          (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 02, 2010, 17:31:58
WikiLeaks revelations? Or, burnin’ rubber
http://unambig.com/wikileaks-revelations-or-burnin-rubber/

Quote
A lot of smoke, very little fire.  This is what Spiegel Online (Der Spiegel is one of the major media recipients of material from Assiduous ******* Assange) manages to highlight today, focused on Russia...

INTERACTIVE ATLAS
(http://www.spiegel.de/img/0,1020,3344029,00.jpg)
http://www.spiegel.de/flash/flash-24861.html
...

So now a hatred-driven, mainly single target site, rather than a principled one aimed at tous azimuts. Thanks to that AAA fellow.

The Guardian also has an interactive map:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/interactive/2010/nov/28/us-embassy-cables-wikileaks

And the NY Times lists cables on Canada here:
http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/11/28/world/20101128-cables-viewer.html?ref=wikileaks#report/canada-04OTTAWA3115

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 02, 2010, 18:45:39
Actually, some of these leaks are quite comical.
As soon as something or another tarnishes in the least the Americans
they get all hyper about it and start sending out "secret wires" one to the other ;D

I enjoy the wire on anti-American Canadian TV ;D
PRIMETIME IMAGES OF US-CANADA BORDER PAINT U.S. IN
INCREASINGLY NEGATIVE LIGHT

Quote:
"When American TV and movie producers want action,
the formula involves Middle Eastern terrorists, a ticking
nuclear device, and a (somewhat ironically, Canadian) guy
named Sutherland. Canadian producers don't need to look so
far -- they can find all the action they need right on the
U.S.-Canadian border."

But.....hey
American TV colourfully paints whomever they want.
Are the middle eastern countries sending out "hot wires" saying that the U.S. is tarnishing them ?
I guess that is why in the U.S. they say "Don't tread on me" (while I tread on you) :nana:

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 03, 2010, 08:22:57
Defence staff warned to steer clear of WikiLeaks docs
 Article Link (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/Defence+staff+warned+steer+clear+WikiLeaks+docs/3914677/story.html)
 By Tobi Cohen, Postmedia News December 2, 2010

OTTAWA — Defence Department staff have been warned against using government computers to sift through secret documents released by WikiLeaks.

An email dubbed "Wikileaks Notice" in the subject line says military computers are "not to be used to visit the Wikileaks (sic) site or any other websites containing such information."

The memo from the assistant deputy minister for information management says doing so amounts to "unauthorized use" under the department's "acceptable use of the Internet, Defence Intranet and other electronic networks and computers" directive.

Canadian Forces IT staff "may monitor attempts to view this site's material and will report attempts to the affected chains of command," it adds.

The department fears accessing the site could expose government computers to "malicious search engine poisoning attacks" and that third parties might "collect and exploit visitor data or deliver malicious software through downloaded files."

As some of the information may be classified, downloading it onto or viewing it from government computers could also be a breach of security policy, it says.

Staff were also warned to consider the similar risk of contamination to personal computers, smart phones and flash drives that access the site. The memo notes transferring data from such devices to department computers is "not authorized."

Defence spokesman John MacLean said a similar warning was issued in July after the whistleblower website released thousands of war logs concerning Afghanistan.
More on link
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 03, 2010, 11:23:08
Yep, Wikileaks documents are well known to contain worms. For an org that is so against the things they leak, they sure do a lot of it themselves.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 03, 2010, 13:19:26
Through the Canadian looking-glass in the WikiLeaks war
http://unambig.com/through-the-canadian-looking-glass-in-the-wikileaks-war/

Quote
Jack Granatstein shrinks us in the Ottawa Citizen:

    Alice in Wonderland is right...

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 03, 2010, 16:25:08
Yep, Wikileaks documents are well known to contain worms. For an org that is so against the things they leak, they sure do a lot of it themselves.

Please cite something of merit to back this up, because I'm pretty convinced it's complete bull.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 03, 2010, 16:36:06
Interesting.

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Ex-Harper adviser should be charged: Assange


03/12/2010 12:46:49 PM
CTV.ca News Staff
 
LINK  (http://news.sympatico.ctv.ca/home/ex-harper_adviser_should_be_charged_assange/f1022c54)

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange says a former adviser to Prime Minister Stephen Harper should face criminal charges for suggesting that the Australian whistleblower should be killed.

During an online interview with London's Guardian newspaper, Assange commented on Tom Flanagan's recent suggestion that he "should be assassinated" for his role in the public release of U.S. diplomatic cables.

"It is correct that Mr. Flanagan and the others seriously making these statements should be charged with incitement to murder," Assange told the Guardian website on Friday.

Flanagan, who previously served as Harper's chief of staff, has already apologized for the controversial remarks he made earlier this week while appearing on a political talk show.

During the show, Flanagan suggested that U.S. President Obama "should put out a contract or maybe use a drone or something" to kill Assange.

Appearing on the same program a day later, Flanagan apologized for his "thoughtless, glib remark about a serious subject."

Flanagan said he "never seriously intended to advocate or propose the assassination of Mr. Assange."

Assange has come under fire in recent days after WikiLeaks began publishing an initial wave of diplomatic cables to its website on Sunday. It plans to put 250,000 such documents on the Internet over time.

At the moment, Swedish authorities are seeking to question Assange "in connection with a number of sexual offences," according to an Interpol news release. The 39-year-old has denied that he has done anything wrong.

Additionally, the United States has made notice that it has "an active, ongoing criminal investigation" into the release of its diplomatic cables.

With files from The Canadian Press


Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GK .Dundas on December 03, 2010, 17:27:05
 Then I should face charges too
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Container on December 03, 2010, 18:08:07
Please cite something of merit to back this up, because I'm pretty convinced it's complete bull.
Assange and lots of the wikilinks "freedom fighters" are former or active hackers. Assange is well documented for it. Why is it hard to believe they have worms in the docs?

Honest question.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ModlrMike on December 03, 2010, 18:31:42
Interesting.

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Ex-Harper adviser should be charged: Assange


03/12/2010 12:46:49 PM
CTV.ca News Staff
 
LINK  (http://news.sympatico.ctv.ca/home/ex-harper_adviser_should_be_charged_assange/f1022c54)

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange says a former adviser to Prime Minister Stephen Harper should face criminal charges for suggesting that the Australian whistleblower should be killed.

Ironic is a more appropriate word.

Ironic that a self proclaimed champion of free speech would advocate criminal charges for what other say. Ironic as well that he hasn't come forward to face his own criminal charges at the same time.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 03, 2010, 18:34:34
Ironic that a self proclaimed champion of free speech would advocate criminal charges for what other say. Ironic as well that he hasn't come forward to face his own criminal charges at the same time.
and it's also hypocrisy that he proclaims that his location ought to be secret when he felt it was in the "greater good" to publish names of Coalition contacts in Afghanistan whilst the war is ongoing. 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 03, 2010, 19:35:18
Tea with the Economist. Julian Assange

http://www.economist.com/blogs/multimedia/2010/07/wikileaks_and_afghan_papers?sort=desc#sort-comments
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 03, 2010, 20:49:34
Assange and lots of the wikilinks "freedom fighters" are former or active hackers. Assange is well documented for it. Why is it hard to believe they have worms in the docs?

Honest question.

Because they've consciously avoided illegal activities and to put a worm in a document that would search out and actually CAUSE leaks would be illegal. What they're doing now is essentially not illegal, as they weren't the ones who leaked the material.

And because as far as I know, you can't put a damn worm in an HTML file that's encoded so simply. To say that there's viruses in the documents they're releasing is blatant fear mongering without a basis aside from your conspiratorial thoughts.

Lastly, demonizing someone for being a "former or active hacker" is pretty lame, considering many 'hackers' (I'd venture to say the majority) are actively engaged in network security operations - especially the most famous former hackers who have served time. For example - the hacker who blew the whistle on Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo. See also Mitnick, Poulsen, Abene, Tappan Morris, etc. etc.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on December 03, 2010, 21:14:14
For every white hat you can name, I bet you'll find there are 5 black hats you don't know about who they are trying to defend against.

Assange has made it his mission to gather information, and he clearly doesn't care that its classified material. Yes, some of the leaks were intentional, but I really doubt the corporate ones that he has (if he has any) were just given to him. He got them somehow, and dollars to donuts it was through a computer.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 03, 2010, 21:15:46
For every white hat you can name, I bet you'll find there are 5 black hats you don't know about who they are trying to defend against.

True.  Why else would they be hired?
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Container on December 03, 2010, 21:48:14
To say that there's viruses in the documents they're releasing is blatant fear mongering without a basis aside from your conspiratorial thoughts.

Lastly, demonizing someone for being a "former or active hacker" is pretty lame, considering many 'hackers' (I'd venture to say the majority) are actively engaged in network security operations - especially the most famous former hackers who have served time. For example - the hacker who blew the whistle on Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo. See also Mitnick, Poulsen, Abene, Tappan Morris, etc. etc.

My conspirational thoughts? Thank you for the answer anyways. I dont know anything about this stuff.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 04, 2010, 10:00:46
The unintended lesson of WikiLeaks

The actions of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange are reckless, amoral, and dangerous. But Assange's bad actions do not invalidate the information contained in his leaks. If the publics of the Western democracies absorb this information, the world will become a better and safer place.

Start, for example, with what we can learn about the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.

Western governments have invested enormous time and money to negotiate an end to that conflict. They have tried to muscle Israel into greater concessions to the Palestinians, and tried to coax the Palestinians to accept those concessions. The peace process has failed because the Palestinians hope that if only they hold out a little longer, they will be offered even more.

We engage in these wearisome and elaborate proceedings because we assume that the Israeli-Palestinian dispute holds the key to regional peace. But now the whole world can see: It's not true. Governments in the region do not in fact care very much about the Israeli-Palestinian dispute. They are transfixed by Iran. They are terrorized by the threat of an Iranian nuclear weapon.

Which raises the question: If the Palestinian issue is so unimportant to the Middle East, why is it so important to us?

WikiLeaks raises the question: Why not say instead to the Palestinians, "You were offered a great deal in 2000 and 2001. You tried to get a better deal by going to war. You lost. So now it's your problem. Here's the telephone. You punch these little buttons when you are ready to talk. You negotiate the best deal you can. If you need a little cash to sweeten the terms, we'll contribute. Otherwise, we're focused on Iran, Pakistan and Turkey. Bye"?

That's the other side of WikiLeaks: Not only are we way over-invested in the Palestinian problem, but we are way under-invested in the problems of these three major countries.

WikiLeaks confirms and underscores the intransigence and belligerence of Iran. Iran has, for example, annexed the Islamic Red Crescent as an arm of Iranian foreign policy.

But you knew that. Here are two things maybe you didn't know: While the U.S. government describes Pakistan as a major non-NATO ally (a legal status that allows Pakistan to purchase sophisticated U.S. weapons), U.S. diplomats worry that Pakistan's nuclear arms are not secure -- and that Pakistan will not co-operate with U.S. efforts to enhance nuclear security.

Meanwhile, Turkey -- a NATO ally, a country that Canada is, by treaty, obliged to go to war to defend -- is allowing Iran to smuggle nuclear components across Turkish territory. This is the same Turkey that closed its bases to the United States during the Iraq war and that enables armed agitators to stage confrontations with the Israeli navy. What exactly does a country have to do to get itself kicked out of the club of Western allies? Has Turkey omitted any of those things? And has anybody noticed that Turkey no longer borders Russia, and so has ceased even to be of much use containing NATO's former adversary?
Meanwhile, of the countries in the Caucasus area that do actually border Russia, one (Georgia) is suffering Russian occupation of big chunks of its national territory, while another (Armenia) has supplied Iran with arms later used against U.S. soldiers in Iraq.
The organizers of Wikileaks say they wanted to blow the whistle on government fictions and expose the ugly realities. In a way they probably never intended, they have done just that. They have revealed that Iran is even more dangerous, Turkey even more hostile, Pakistan even more precarious and the Palestinians even more irrelevant than generally understood.
article link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/unintended+lesson+WikiLeaks/3927530/story.html#ixzz179RNd6uz)
                             (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 04, 2010, 11:23:02
PayPal cuts WikiLeaks from money flow, making donations more difficult
The Associated Press 4/12/2010
Article Link (http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/breakingnews/online-payment-service-paypal-cuts-wikileaks-from-money-flow-making-donations-more-difficult-111314499.html)
 
BERLIN - Online payment service provider PayPal says in a company blog it has cut off the account used by WikiLeaks to collect donations.

The company said in a blog posting the move was prompted by a violation of its policy, "which states that our payment service cannot be used for any activities that encourage, promote, facilitate or instruct others to engage in illegal activity."

The short notice was dated Friday, and a spokeswoman for PayPal Germany on Saturday declined to elaborate and referred to the official blog posting.

Donating money to WikiLeaks via PayPal on Saturday was not possible anymore, generating an error message saying "this recipient is currently unable to receive money."

PayPal is one of several ways WikiLeaks collects donations.
end

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 04, 2010, 21:49:52
I am not sure how seriously this question is being asked, but at least it is being asked.  From the front page of the paper version of the Ottawa Citizen:


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.


How far does the right to know extend?
 WikiLeaks a sign of press freedom, but also a danger

By Randy Boswell, Postmedia news
December 4, 2010
 
LINK  (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/does+right+know+extend/3926868/story.html)


It has opened a window, in fact thousands of them, large and small on the inner workings of the U.S. government and its relations with Canada and the rest of the world.

The unprecedented posting of a massive WikiLeaks database of some 250,000 secret U.S. diplomatic cables is being hailed by some as the ultimate coup for investigative journalism and the cause of democratic transparency.

But critics, led by the victimized U.S. government itself, have condemned the document deluge as a crime akin to terrorism, one that could risk the lives of spies and their informants, undermine the foreign polices of the U.S. and its allies, or even spark a war.

The controversial disclosures are also raising profound questions about relationships between nations and discrepancies between governments' public positions and the confidential reports underlying them.

The dizzying array of debate topics sparked by the leaks ranges from the legitimacy of governments keeping official secrets at all to the potential criminality of Julian Assange -- WikiLeaks access-to-information maverick (or demon) -- in airing the dirty laundry of diplomats, democrats and despots.

And all the while, the world's mainstream media organizations are hungrily feeding on the revelations served up by Assange's organization, from consular officials' petty, unguarded gossip about their host countries to potential bombshells such as secret Saudi cheerleading for a U.S. military attack on Iran.

"The cables," Assange said when the documents were released last Sunday, "show the U.S. spying on its allies and the UN, turning a blind eye to corruption and human rights abuse in client states, backroom deals with supposedly neutral countries and lobbying for U.S. corporations." But the immediate and potential damage to global diplomacy, says the head of Carleton University's foreign affairs program, is far too high a price to pay for the indiscriminate dump of WikiLeaks documents.

"I think we're beginning to see some of the collateral damage," said Fen Hampson, director of Carleton's Norman Paterson School of International Affairs, referring to leaked U.S. cables in which Canada's ambassador to Afghanistan, William Crosbie, is described slamming the corrupt electoral practices of Afghan President Hamid Karzai's regime.

The leak prompted Crosbie to offer his resignation this week.

"It wasn't that he wasn't doing his job -- he was doing exactly his job, reporting on meetings," Hampson said. "But these aren't the sort of comments that can withstand public scrutiny in the light of day." That makes the exposing of such documents, he argues, "corrosive" to Canada's foreign relations and to international diplomacy in general.

But Hampson says the danger runs deeper because the leaks will likely force governments to tightly restrict the distribution of information within foreign departments and the sharing of intelligence between agencies involved in battling terrorism.

"One of the reasons (the leak) happened was that in a post-9/11 U.S. environment, there was a desire to share information to prevent further attacks," he noted. "Information which, in the old days, would have been kept on a tighter distribution list obviously got on a much wider distribution list." Foreign intelligence sources, he notes, "will be much more careful about what they say" in front of American diplomats and their operatives as a "deep chill" on communication sets in following the WikiLeaks release.

Media outlets such as Britain's Guardian newspaper, which made arrangements with Assange to see the documents ahead of their wider release, have emphasized their efforts to avoid endangering any individual intelligence agents by censoring some details from their reports on the WikiLeaks cables.

Chris Waddell, the director of Carleton's School of Journalism and Communication, objected to the breathless reporting of more superficial or unsurprising details found in the leaked cables, such as one diplomat's unvarnished view of the vain Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's partying ways.

But other genuine revelations, he says, such as hints that China may be open to the peaceful reunification of the Koreas, will inform analyses of that situation and perhaps even help reshape foreign relations in the region.

"Is it in the public interest to know all these things?" Waddell asks. "Is it in the public interest not to know all these things? I would generally argue that it's in the public interest to know more than to know less." And despite acknowledging some troubling aspects of the WikiLeaks "dump" of the secret U.S. documents, Waddell says responsible reportage of the truly important disclosures should ultimately serve democracy if thoughtful analysis and probing journalism triumph over sensationalism.

But Hampson fears the fallout. While transparency and accountability are important values, he said, democratic countries "also need to keep some of their secrets" to function effectively on the global stage and to exercise influence in "a world that is not filled with democracies." Information may be the oxygen of democracy, he added, "but in an oxygen-rich environment, a spark can ignite a firestorm."

© Copyright (c) The Ottawa Citizen


Read more: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/does+right+know+extend/3926868/story.html#ixzz17CKQKYjY
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: tomahawk6 on December 04, 2010, 21:58:31
Paypal has dropped wikileaks from their service. Should slow donations down a bit. :)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: tomahawk6 on December 04, 2010, 22:00:01
The public has no right to secret information until such time that it has been unclassified.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 05, 2010, 08:08:53
The "rape" case against Assange is bizarre. Basically his condom broke during consensual sex and Sweden has some really strange new laws. Laws that are being applied retroactively in this case.  Anna Ardin claims that his celebrity status denoted an unequal power relationship so her sex was not consensual. He was exceedingly dumb for screwing over a radical feminist who had worked in diplomacy with friends in Washington.
http://resources.statsvet.uu.se/repository/1/polmag/PraktikutvVT05_del2.PDF

 (From her blog, translated from  Swedish.)
Quote
7 Steps to Legal Revenge by Anna Ardin

    January 19, 2010

    I’ve been thinking about some revenge over the last few days and came across a very good side (Sofia Wilén, the other corner of the love triangle?) who inspired me to this seven-point revenge instruction in Swedish.

    Steg 1 / Step 1
    It is almost always better to forgive than to avenge

    Steg 2 / Step 2
    You need to be clear about who to take revenge on, as well as why. Revenge is never directed against only one person, but also the actions of the person.

    Steg 3 / Step 3
    Proportionalitetsprincipen.
    The principle of proportionality.
    A good revenge is linked to what has been done against you.
    For example if you want revenge on someone who cheated or who dumped you, you should use a punishment with dating/sex/fidelity involved.

    Steg 4 / Step 4
    Do a brainstorm of appropriate measures for the category of revenge you’re after. To continue the example above, you can sabotage your victim’s current relationship, such as getting his new partner to be unfaithful or ensure that he gets a madman after him.
    Use your imagination!

    Steg 5 / Step
    Figure out how you can systematically take revenge.
Send your victim a series of letters and photographs that make your victim’s new partner believe that you are still together which is better than to tell just one big lie on one single occasion

    Steg 6 / Step 6
    Rank your systematic revenge schemes from low to high in terms of likely success, required input from you, and degree of satisfaction when you succeed.
    The ideal, of course, is a revenge as strong as possible but this requires a lot of hard work and effort for it to turn out exactly as you want it to.

    Step 7 / Step 7
    And remember what your goals are while you are operating, ensure that your victim will suffer the same way as he made you suffer.

    Entry Filed under: politik . Entry Filed under: politics . Taggar: hämnd , revenge , laglig hämnd , hämnas , återgälda , straffa


Here are are the women scorned. Wilen on the left, Ardin on the right
(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v483/Nemo888/SofiaWilen-1.jpg)(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v483/Nemo888/anna_ardin.jpg)

With only about 700 cables released so far the US still looks great compared to the megalomaniacs, kleptocrats and fascist wannabes they have to deal with. Much of the information probably should not have been classified in the first place. I was not surprised by anything yet. The leaks have brought some very good information to people who usually don't care about such things (Iran). It also will give future administrations pause before breaking the rule of law.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: bdave on December 05, 2010, 08:35:37
(http://juvo.se/m1az.png)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 05, 2010, 08:39:11
Bwahahaha @ bdave
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 05, 2010, 09:00:49
I always found it ironic that the State Department spends so much time and energy keeping secrets from the State (the people).
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Inky on December 05, 2010, 13:29:09
I personally don't find these "gossips" very funny. Not after a buddy of mine's had his name plastered all over the net because of these leaks.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 05, 2010, 13:59:38
WikiLeak: “SCENESETTER FOR PRESIDENT BUSH’S VISIT TO CANADA, NOVEMBER 30 – DECEMBER 1, 2004″
http://unambig.com/wikileak-scenesetter-for-president-bushs-visit-to-canada-november-30-december-1-2004/

Quote
This November 18 telegram looks like a pretty good diplomatic report to me.  This excerpt is mildly amusing in view of current politics...

Mark
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Container on December 05, 2010, 14:33:03

The state needs to be able to make candid assessments without offending the other state leaders. So, if Im a state, and I dont want constant conflict with another country I cant write down my honest assessment or create contingency plans? Because everyone has a right to know everything? Thats an incredibly irresponsible way for a government to conduct itself.

Its doesnt work at the most basic level for everyday people, having to air out everything, and it wont work for an effective government. More transparency like finances and such sure. State relations? Get bent.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 05, 2010, 14:53:41
The state needs to be able to make candid assessments without offending the other state leaders. So, if Im a state, and I dont want constant conflict with another country I cant write down my honest assessment or create contingency plans? Because everyone has a right to know everything? Thats an incredibly irresponsible way for a government to conduct itself.

Its doesnt work at the most basic level for everyday people, having to air out everything, and it wont work for an effective government. More transparency like finances and such sure. State relations? Get bent.

We don't have to go very far in this matter to see this demonstrated.  Julian Assange doesn't like his dirtly laundry and personal information posted on the internet or in the news.  He has been bouncing around the world imposing himself on friends for the last few years trying to avoid being tracked by anyone.   He is avoiding Sweden now like the plague.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on December 05, 2010, 15:00:54
Wikileaks isn't doing this alone, the Mainstream Media is heavily involved trying to get the best ratings out of each release:

Respected media outlets collaborate with WikiLeaks (http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5i0Vruimmvy8loGklsz34QyGDKMDA?docId=120c7bf5d3a34dbaadf1280dace2e456)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 05, 2010, 16:46:17
We don't have to go very far in this matter to see this demonstrated.  Julian Assange doesn't like his dirtly laundry and personal information posted on the internet or in the news.  He has been bouncing around the world imposing himself on friends for the last few years trying to avoid being tracked by anyone.   He is avoiding Sweden now like the plague.

I would avoid Sweden too, if they had bent the law as ridiculously (http://www.heraldsun.com.au/opinion/swedens-reputation-is-on-trial-in-julian-assange-case/story-e6frfhqf-1225965772832) as they have with Assange:

Quote
APPARENTLY having consensual sex in Sweden without a condom is punishable by a term of imprisonment of a minimum of two years for Rape

That was the basis for a recent revival of rape allegations against Wikileaks figurehead Julian Assange that is destined to make Sweden and its justice system the laughing stock of the world and dramatically damage its reputation as a model of modernity.

Sweden’s Public Prosecutor’s Office was embarrassed in August this year when they leaked to the media that they were seeking to arrest Assange for rape then on the same day withdrew the arrest warrant because in their own words there was “no evidence”.

The damage to Assange’s reputation is incalculable.

Three months on and three prosecutors later the Swedes seemed to be clear on their basis to proceed with a headline grabbing international arrest warrant. If consensual sex that started out with the intention of condom use and actual condom use ended up without condom, that’s rape.

Statements by the two female “victims” Sophia Wilen and Anna Ardin that there was no fear or violence would stop a rape charge in any western country dead in its tracks.

Rape is a crime of violence.

Both women boasted of their of their respective celebrity conquests on internet posts and mobile phones texts after the intimacy they would now see him destroyed for.

Ardin hosted a party in Assange’s honour at her flat after the ‘crime’ and tweeted to her followers that she was with the “the world's coolest smartest people, it's amazing!”

Ardin has sought unsuccessfully to delete these and thereby destroy evidence of Assange’s innocence She has published on the internet a guide on how to get revenge on cheating boyfriends.
 
Their sms texts to each other show a plan to contact the Swedish newspaper Expressen before hand in order to maximise the damage to Assange.

They belong to the same political group and attended a public lecture given by Assange and organised by them.

The exact content of Sophia Wilén’s mobile phone texts is not yet known but their bragging and generally positive content about Assange has been confirmed by Swedish prosecutors.
 
The consent of both women to sex with Assange has been confirmed by prosecutors. Niether Wilén’s nor Ardin’s texts complain of rape.

These facts should make any normal prosecutor gravely concerned about whether a false complaint is being made.

But then neither Arden nor Wilén complained to the police. They collaboratively ‘sought advice’, a technique in Sweden enabling citizens to avoid being sued for making false complaints

In any normal first world country the prosecutor would know that her case not just a deeply flawed waste of time by a dangerous perversion of the serious objectives of rape laws.

The womens’ lawyer Claes Borgström was questioned by the media as to how the women themselves could be contradicting the legal characterisation of Swedish prosecutors; a crime of non-consent by consent.
 
Borgström’s answer is emblematic of how divorced from reality this matter is: “they (the women) are not jurists”.

You need a law degree to know whether you have been raped or not in Sweden.

How the Swedish authorities propose to prosecute for victims who neither saw themselves as such nor acted as such is easily answered: You’re not a Swedish lawyer so you wouldn’t understand anyway.

Make no mistake: It is not Julian Assange that is on trial here but Sweden and its reputation as a modern and model country with rules of law.

- James D. Catlin is a Melbourne barrister who acted for Assange in London earlier this year.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 05, 2010, 16:56:39
Consider the source of this article:
- James D. Catlin is a Melbourne barrister who acted for Assange in London earlier this year
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 05, 2010, 19:38:51
WikiLeaks cables portray Saudi Arabia as a cash machine for terrorists

Hillary Clinton memo highlights Gulf states' failure to block funding for groups like al-Qaida, Taliban and Lashkar-e-Taiba

Declan Walsh in Islamabad guardian.co.uk, Sunday 5 December 2010
Article Link (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/05/wikileaks-cables-saudi-terrorist-funding)
 
Saudi Arabia is the world's largest source of funds for Islamist militant groups such as the Afghan Taliban and Lashkar-e-Taiba – but the Saudi government is reluctant to stem the flow of money, according to Hillary Clinton.

"More needs to be done since Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qaida, the Taliban, LeT and other terrorist groups," says a secret December 2009 paper signed by the US secretary of state. Her memo urged US diplomats to redouble their efforts to stop Gulf money reaching extremists in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

"Donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide," she said.

Three other Arab countries are listed as sources of militant money: Qatar, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.

The cables highlight an often ignored factor in the Pakistani and Afghan conflicts: that the violence is partly bankrolled by rich, conservative donors across the Arabian Sea whose governments do little to stop them.

The problem is particularly acute in Saudi Arabia, where militants soliciting funds slip into the country disguised as holy pilgrims, set up front companies to launder funds and receive money from government-sanctioned charities.

One cable details how the Pakistani militant outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba, which carried out the 2008 Mumbai attacks, used a Saudi-based front company to fund its activities in 2005.

Meanwhile officials with the LeT's charity wing, Jamaat-ud-Dawa, travelled to Saudi Arabia seeking donations for new schools at vastly inflated costs – then siphoned off the excess money to fund militant operations.

Militants seeking donations often come during the hajj pilgrimage – "a major security loophole since pilgrims often travel with large amounts of cash and the Saudis cannot refuse them entry into Saudi Arabia". Even a small donation can go far: LeT operates on a budget of just $5.25m (£3.25m) a year, according to American estimates.

Saudi officials are often painted as reluctant partners. Clinton complained of the "ongoing challenge to persuade Saudi officials to treat terrorist funds emanating from Saudi Arabia as a strategic priority".
More on link
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 05, 2010, 20:23:57
About time someone in the media took notice.

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Al-Qaida combing WikiLeaks notes for extermination list

By MERCEDES STEPHENSON, QMI Agency
Last Updated: December 5, 2010 2:00am

 
LINK  (http://www.ottawasun.com/comment/columnists/mercedes_stephenson/2010/12/03/16422246.html)

WikiLeaks proved one thing: The world works pretty much how you assumed it did.

People in the foreign service posted abroad write classified memos back to their government that provide information and situational awareness about what's going on overseas.

They pose and answer a variety of questions including: Where are the missiles? Is the president corrupt? And even, why do they spend so much time stereotyping us on TV?

The only surprising thing in the WikiLeaks cables is how witty some of the authors are.

Laid bare are the relationships, strains and politics of international affairs. It's not pretty, but it's to be expected. Human relations are complicated at the one-on-one level.

Imagine magnifying the egos, hissy fits and personality conflicts in your next office meeting with weapons, billions of dollars and, well, not quite world domination, but substantial power, and you have international politics.

The cables make it clear that diplomats frequently say things behind closed doors that they don't say to foreign governments' faces.

Telling a dictator you think he's a psycho, or has the nation-building capabilities of your cat, doesn’t help to advance one's cause or bring about change.

International affairs are full of intrigue, and there's a little James Bond in us all. WikiLeaks is appealing because it's a salacious glimpse into a highly complex and secretive world.

The problem is that indiscriminate release of these classified cables have very real consequences. Emboldening and empowering Iran is one them.

Duplicity exposed

While Saudi Arabia is publicly expressing concern about U.S. presence in the Middle East, they’ve been privately beseeching the Americans to bomb Iran. It's amusing to see the duplicity exposed, but the reality is it will seriously compromise upcoming nuclear negotiations with Iran.

Suzanne Malone, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institute, argues that Tehran now has the inside track and will exploit it to undermine vital nuclear non-proliferation negotiations.

Then there's the helping hand WikiLeaks has provided al-Qaida in Yemen - where the last few attempted attacks on North America have been directed from, including the underwear bomber and recent cargo bombs.

Leaked cables reveal strikes against al-Qaida in Yemen were sometimes the work of the U.S., and not the Yemeni military.

The Yemeni military, concluding it couldn't handle the volatile situation alone, requested American assistance.

These revelations risk inflaming extremist sentiment in Yemen and will provide ammunition to al-Qaida to appeal to anti-Americanism to boost recruiting and sanctuary.

Most appalling is WikiLeaks' apparent disregard for those brave people who stand up to tyranny, dictatorship, genocide and oppression.

Amnesty International and other human rights groups have begged WikiLeaks to show responsibility and compassion and simply stop dumping information that exposes people.

'Wanted' list

The Taliban has announced a "wanted" list containing the names of Afghans known to be collaborating with NATO, drawn from names and license plates revealed in the last WikiLeak.

Repressive regimes, armed militias, and dictators are combing documents, identifying their enemies who dared to speak out against them.

They will round up and imprison, torture or execute people who reported unthinkable human rights abuses and stood up to tyranny.

Julian Assange is the ultimate hypocrite.

He derides U.S. forces for "collateral damage," civilian casualties accidentally incurred during strikes on military targets.

Yet Assange absolves himself of collateral damage WikiLeaks will be responsible for - the silencing and murder of people around the world who stood up for the very principles he claims to espouse - transparency, democracy and freedom.

If silencing dissidents, empowering dictatorial and aggressive regimes and casting a chill on the ability of diplomats to provide frank and honest assessments is what WikiLeaks intended to do, then it's accomplished its goal.

Otherwise Assange's definition of "freedom" is positively Orwellian.

mercedes.stephenson@suntv.canoe.ca




Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 05, 2010, 20:49:40
I think that Mercedes Stephenson nailed it.  Well done to her.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 05, 2010, 20:52:34
trying to get the best ratings out of each release:

I can see this turning into the Wikileaks superthread ;D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 06, 2010, 02:13:08
Consider the source of this article:
- James D. Catlin is a Melbourne barrister who acted for Assange in London earlier this year

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem#Ad_hominem_circumstantial (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem#Ad_hominem_circumstantial)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyVern on December 06, 2010, 02:52:12
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem#Ad_hominem_circumstantial (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem#Ad_hominem_circumstantial)

Ad_hominem !!??

 :rofl:

Uhmmm no; you just attempted to use the guys defence attorney as a "valid source" for a fact-based arguement (That's almost as bad as citing wikipedia as a solid factual source).

I tell you this much, my defense attorney had better damned well defend me - that's how they keep their jobs.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 06, 2010, 03:53:22
Uhmmm no; you just attempted to use the guys defence attorney as a "valid source" for a fact-based arguement.

I tell you this much, my defense attorney had better damned well defend me - that's how they keep their jobs.

He represented him in the past. Not currently his attorney. Regardless of whether you're going to accept his article (which is, of course, an opinion piece anyways - no matter who it comes from - despite his use of what I consider to be logical connections), the fact is that he's wanted for questioning regarding broken condoms. If you'd like to read a long detailed account of Assange's sexual relations with the two women, you can head on over here. (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1307137/Supporters-dismissed-rape-accusations-WikiLeaks-founder-Julian-Assange--women-involved-tell-different-story.html) A promiscuous chauvinist maybe, but rapist? I have strong doubts.

I expect that if Assange is extradited to Sweden, the charges will drop after a short attempt at prosecution, and America will then use Sweden to have him extradited and face charges in the US (as described here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0zJYrtqoYo)).
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Tommy on December 06, 2010, 03:55:01
I think that Mercedes Stephenson nailed it.  Well done to her.

+1
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 06, 2010, 10:30:40
This will sure boost Assange's standing in Canada:

WikiLeaks’s mad attack on Canada
By Norman Spector
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/second-reading/spector-vision/wikileaks-mad-attack-on-canada/article1826060/

Quote
In February of last year, U.S. diplomatic posts were given one month by Washington to compile and forward an inventory of critical infrastructure and key resources in their respective reporting areas “whose loss could critically impact the public health, economic security, and/or national and homeland security of the United States.” The U.S. embassy in Ottawa – and the string of American consulates across Canada – were included in this “action request.”..

Not surprisingly given that we share a continent, the U.S. compilation of critical infrastructure and key resources in foreign countries includes many sites and undertakings in Canada, from Nova Scotia to British Columbia. Dams; undersea cables; oil and gas pipelines; border crossings, including bridges; nuclear power plants; defence production factories; mines; and, last but not least, pharmaceutical and vaccine production plants.

While, there has been considerable sympathy to date for WikiLeaks and for Mr. Assange, I suspect that some of this might erode once Canadians get a look at this latest cable,
http://213.251.145.96/cable/2009/02/09STATE15113.html
which is now widely available,
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/06/world/europe/06wiki.html?ref=todayspaper
and which sets out the juiciest targets in Canada for those looking to do harm to the United States. Moreover, once Canadians have had a chance to examine the list of sites it includes, I doubt that many of our compatriots will conclude that its compilation by U.S. diplomats serving in this country amounts to anything remotely connected to what we understand to constitute espionage:

Canada: Hibernia Atlantic undersea cable landing Halifax , Nova Scotia, Canada James Bay Power Project, Quebec: monumental hydroelectric power development Mica Dam, British Columbia: Failure would impact the Columbia River Basin. Hydro Quebec, Quebec: Critical irreplaceable source of power to portions of Northeast U. S. Robert Moses/Robert H. Saunders Power, Ontario: Part of the St. Lawrence Power Project, between Barnhart Island, New York, and Cornwall, Ontario Seven Mile Dam, British Columbia: Concrete gravity dam between two other hydropower dams along the Pend d'Oreille River Pickering Nuclear Power Plant, Ontario, Canada Chalk River Nuclear Facility, Ontario: Largest supplier of medical radioisotopes in the world Hydrofluoric Acid Production Facility, Allied Signal, Amherstburg, Ontario Enbridge Pipeline Alliance Pipeline: Natural gas transmission from Canada Maritime and Northeast Pipeline: Natural gas transmission from Canada Transcanada Gas: Natural gas transmission from Canada Alexandria Bay POE, Ontario: Northern border crossing Ambassador Bridge POE, Ontario: Northern border crossing Blaine POE, British Columbia: Northern border crossing Blaine Washington Rail Crossing, British Columbia Blue Water Bridge POE, Ontario: Northern border crossing Champlain POE, Quebec: Northern border crossing CPR Tunnel Rail Crossing, Ontario (Michigan Central Rail Crossing) International Bridge Rail Crossing, Ontario International Railway Bridge Rail Crossing Lewiston-Queenstown POE, Ontario: Northern border crossing Peace Bridge POE, Ontario: Northern border crossing Pembina POE, Manitoba: Northern border crossing North Portal Rail Crossing, Saskatchewan St. Claire Tunnel Rail Crossing, Ontario Waneta Dam, British Columbia: Earthfill/concrete hydropower dam Darlington Nuclear Power Plant, Ontario, Canada. E-ONE Moli Energy, Maple Ridge, Canada: Critical to production of various military application electronics General Dynamics Land Systems – Canada, London Ontario, Canada: Critical to the production of the Stryker/USMC LAV Vehicle Integration Raytheon Systems Canada Ltd. ELCAN Optical Technologies Division, Midland, Ontario, Canada: Critical to the production of the AGM-130 Missile Thales Optronique Canada, Inc., Montreal, Quebec: Critical optical systems for ground combat vehicles [emphasis added] Germanium Mine Graphite Mine Iron Ore Mine Nickel Mine Niobec Mine, Quebec, Canada: Niobium Cangene, Winnipeg, Manitoba: Plasma Sanofi Pasteur Ltd., Toronto, Canada: Polio virus vaccine GlaxoSmithKile Biologicals, North America, Quebec, Canada: Pre-pandemic influenza vaccines.
 

Mark
Ottawa

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 06, 2010, 10:59:39
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem#Ad_hominem_circumstantial (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ad_hominem#Ad_hominem_circumstantial)
From your own "source":
Quote
Where the source taking a position seeks to convince us by a claim of authority, or personal observation, observation of their circumstances may reduce the evidentiary weight of the claims, sometimes to zero.
The barrister in this case is not a dis-interested party, and his objectivity may preclude the weight of his argument.  This would be akin to having a sitting minister in any Prime Minister's cabinet to assess, on the record, how that government is functioning.

And thank you for your "lesson" on logical fallacies.  I've heard one or two in my time at this (http://www.uwo.ca/philosophy/) institution.  Doesn't make me perfect, of course, but it does make me careful.   Anyway, in the interest of fair play, consider this site (http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/circumstantial-ad-hominem.html) as a more authoritative source for descriptions of logical fallacies.  So, consider this:
Quote
There are times when it is prudent to suspicious of a person's claims, such as when it is evident that the claims are being biased by the person's interests. For example, if a tobacco company representative claims that tobacco does not cause cancer, it would be prudent to not simply accept the claim. This is because the person has a motivation to make the claim, whether it is true or not. However, the mere fact that the person has a motivation to make the claim does not make it false. For example, suppose a parent tells her son that sticking a fork in a light socket would be dangerous. Simply because she has a motivation to say this obviously does not make her claim false.

So, the fact that he was (is?) Mr. Assange's barrister does not necessarily make any claim he states false, but it would be prudent to be suspicious of them, warranting careful consideration.



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 06, 2010, 11:05:11
WikiLeaks publishes list of worldwide infrastructure 'critical' to security of U.S.
U.S. condemns release as 'irresponsible' amid fears information could be used by terrorists
Article Link (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40526224/ns/us_news-security/)

A list drawn up by U.S. officials of companies and installations around the world regarded as "critical" to the security of the United States has been published online by controversial website WikiLeaks.

The list includesfactories, ports, fuel companies, drug manufacturers, undersea cables, pipelines, communication hubs and a host of other "key resources."

A Danish insulin plant, a company making anti-snake venom in Australia and a Cobalt mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo are also included.
Video: WikiLeaks founder remains defiant (on this page)

Its publication was denounced as "irresponsible" by U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Philip Crowley, amid fears it could be used as a list of targets by terrorists, Britain's Times newspaper reported.

The document was drawn up after the State Department asked diplomats in February 2009 to identify "systems and assets, whether physical or virtual, so vital to the United States the incapacitation or destruction of such systems and assets would have a debilitating impact on security, national economic security, national public health or safety, or any combination of those matters."
More on link
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 06, 2010, 13:49:24
I wonder how much truth there is in this undated snippet from Spiegel Online:
http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,732901,00.html

Quote

 Americans dispatched to Libya report in great detail on Gadhafi’s peculiarities, the airs and graces of his sons and the degree to which his advisers fear his wrath. For example, they closely monitored how wounded pride led him to take two Swiss citizens hostage and humiliate the Swiss government, how he almost forced Canada to its knees by threatening to nationalize the assets of PetroCanada…

In 2007 Petro-Canada renegotiated the terms of its presence in Libya, with new terms much more favourable to the latter. Might that be what the Crazy Colonel achieved?

Libya Taps Billions from Petro-Canada for Oil Access
http://www.libyaonline.com/news/details.php?id=1437

Via Galea Hortus, who notes that “Our ever-vigilant Media seem to have missed this!”  Canada’s National Whatever
http://unambig.com/afstan-and-canadas-national-whatever-and-hopeless-hopeless-hopeless/
did however mention that “Libyan Leader Moammar Gadhafi likes the company of his buxom Ukrainian nurse.”
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/wikileaks-documents-send-shock-waves-around-the-globe/article1816507/

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 06, 2010, 15:36:01
WikiLeaks publishes list of worldwide infrastructure 'critical' to security of U.S.

Ok, now that is clearly a serious breach of security. Could this spell the end of Wikileaks?

Quote
Swiss Freeze WikiLeaks Bank Account

LONDON — A Swiss bank account held by Julian Assange for donations to his anti-secrecy organization WikiLeaks and his legal defense has been frozen.

Marc Andrey, a spokesman for PostFinance, the finance arm of the Swiss Postal service SwissPost, said in a telephone interview from Bern that the account was closed because Mr. Assange “gave us false information when he opened the account,” saying that he lived in Switzerland.

Mr. Andrey said SwissPost offers accounts only to those who are Swiss or reside in Switzerland. Mr. Assange holds Australian citizenship and is currently believed to be in hiding in England. “As soon as we verified that he doesn’t live here,” said Mr. Andrey, “we blocked the account.”

Shortly after PostFinance issued a press release announcing the termination, WikiLeaks responded with a notification of its own, sent via its Twitter feed. The message, which described Mr. Assange as a “homeless refugee” claimed that the account held 31,000 euros, or about $41,000.

The move by the Swiss bank had thrown into relief, it said “the power dynamics between supposedly independent states like Switzerland, Sweden and Australia,” an apparent reference to efforts by businesses and his home government to distance themselves from WikiLeaks’ activities following the release of classified American diplomatic cables from over 250,000 it had obtained.

On Sunday the American ambassador to Switzerland, Donald S. Beyer Jr., told the Swiss weekly magazine NZZ am Sonntag that the country “should very carefully consider whether to provide shelter to someone who is on the run from the law.”

Mr. Andrey said that SwissPost had not, to his knowledge, come under pressure from Swiss or American officials to close the bank account. Efforts to contact Mr. Assange to arrange for the funds in the account to be transferred had been unsuccessful, he said.

WikiLeaks’ site still showed Swiss bank details and asked for donations to the Julian Assange Defense Fund on Monday afternoon. Mr. Assange is facing extradition to Sweden, prompted by Swedish prosecutors seeking information on allegations of rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion made by two women in Stockholm this summer.

According to accounts the women gave to the police and friends, they each had consensual sexual encounters with Mr. Assange that became nonconsensual. One woman said that Mr. Assange had ignored her appeals to stop after a condom broke. The other woman said that she and Mr. Assange had begun a sexual encounter using a condom, but that Mr. Assange did not comply with her appeals to stop when it was no longer in use. Mr. Assange has denied any wrongdoing and has questioned the veracity of those accounts.

According to Mr. Assange’s lawyers in London, an Interpol notice and a Europol arrest warrant that would oblige British police to arrest Mr. Assange were pending last week. The BBC, and a message on the WikiLeaks Twitter feed, reported that new warrants had been issued and that his arrest might be imminent. The accounts could not be independently verified — a spokesman for the Metropolitan police declined to comment until an arrest was made and Jennifer Robinson, one of Mr. Assange’s lawyers in London, said she had not yet been informed of any new documentation.

Article (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/07/world/europe/07assange.html?_r=1&src=twt&twt=nytimes)



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 06, 2010, 15:53:56
Quote
...described Mr. Assange as a “homeless refugee”
  ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 06, 2010, 16:08:09
Assange and his lawyer are arranging for a meeting time and place with police, apparently. Rumour has it that it's to be arrested, as the warrant from Sweden was received this morning/afternoon (UK time) by Scotland Yard.
Live updates over here (http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/blog/2010/dec/06/wikileaks-us-embassy-cables-live-updates).

Also found it interesting that many media organizations are no longer using the term 'whistle-blower' to describe WikiLeaks. (http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_thecutline/20101206/ts_yblog_thecutline/some-news-outlets-stop-dubbing-wikileaks-a-whistleblower)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Larry Strong on December 06, 2010, 16:26:12
...described Mr. Assange as a “homeless refugee” ::)

A situation that is the consequences of his own actions. As to the money in the bank....should a' thought of that before lying....to bad so sad
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: IBM on December 06, 2010, 16:44:56
Op Ed piece but I think this guy sums it up pretty well.

The nihilism of WikiLeaks and Julian Assange compromises U.S. security
http://tech.mit.edu/V130/N58/wikileaks_p.html (http://tech.mit.edu/V130/N58/wikileaks_p.html)

By Keith Yost
STAFF COLUMNIST
December 3, 2010

In a recent interview with The New Yorker, Julian Assange, the director of WikiLeaks, was asked if he would ever refrain from releasing information he knew might get someone killed. The question was not just hypothetical: a year and a half earlier, Assange had published a study that detailed technical vulnerabilities in actively employed U.S. Army countermeasures against improvised explosive devices.

There was no conceivable benefit to publishing the information. The Army needed no extra pressure to address the vulnerabilities — it was already desperately searching for new countermeasures to protect its soldiers. The only beneficiaries were insurgents, who, using Assange’s gift, could better murder U.S. servicemen.

In response to the interview question, Assange was blase. Yes, he admitted, there might be some “blood on our hands,” some “collateral damage, if you will.” But unlike the journalistic world at large, he didn’t feel it was his duty to weigh and pass judgment on the value of the information he made public. Transparency, the WikiLeaks founder obstinately insisted, would create a better society for all, and we must be willing to break a few eggs to make the omelette.

As he hides behind this reasoning, Assange has released the Social Security numbers of U.S. military personnel, opening them up to identity theft. He has revealed the names of Afghan civilians who collaborate with U.S. forces, a move that was greeted with joy by Taliban commanders, who quickly promised to hunt down and execute those named. He has betrayed the identities of human rights activists and journalists who, at great risk to themselves, passed information on their conditions to U.S. diplomats. In discussing one source, a diplomat pleads: “Please Protect,” and for good reason — with the informant’s identity now known, there is a serious risk that this the poor woman who trusted the United States will be whisked off to prison or worse.

Assange has billed this as some journalistically significant reveal, but if the recent cable releases reveal anything at all, it’s that what the U.S. says in public and what it does in private are remarkably well matched. We’re working hard to secure loose nuclear material. We’re worried about terrorism. We’re trying to unwind Guantanamo Bay. Nothing that is said about foreign powers in the cables is very surprising. Russia is no longer a democratic country. Some elements of the Pakistani government cannot be trusted. China is launching cyber-attacks against the United States. Assange — a computer hacker, not a policy wonk — may be ignorant enough to consider cables novel, but they reveal very little of use, and most of the information (without the harmful details) has already been purposely leaked by the government itself. There is no big lie, no grand hypocrisy, no Chomskyan or Mearsheimeran conspiracy afoot. If this was a whistle-blowing operation, who was the whistle being blown on? Much as it was with the Iraq and Afghanistan leaks, the results were a big yawn. And like revealing the frequencies that our IED jammers work on, Assange immensely damaged U.S. efforts, but added little to the discussion.

The greatest irony is that by proving transparency can be used for evil as well as good, Assange hasn’t just harmed our national security, he’s poisoned the very movement he purports to lead. After 9/11, we worked hard to tear down the walls between agencies and encourage a free flow of information that would better help us connect the dots on issues such as terrorism. It is likely that in the aftermath of WikiLeaks’ attack, our government will return to its Cold War ways, silo-ing information, reducing what it writes down, and securing itself against releases, good or bad.

Mr. Assange and his conspirators tell us they are part of a “New Journalism,” unmotivated by profit or partisanship (never mind their past attempts to auction off their finds or the unabashed ideological spin that accompanies their leaks). But the truth is that their motivation is as old as time itself; like small children playing with fires, fascinated with their own power to destroy, Assange and company are setting the world aflame merely to watch it burn. They are not crusaders for a better society. They are nihilists. They are anarchists. And they are enemies of the United States.

Under U.S. law, we have the authority to stop them. Members of WikiLeaks are almost certainly in violation of the Espionage Act, and when it comes to espionage, it does not matter that they are foreign citizens (see U.S. v. Zehe), nor does it matter if we violate the sovereignty of another country in abducting them (See U.S. v. Verdugo-Urquidez).

Even if WikiLeaks had a legal defense, the first obligation of our government is not to defend some vague conception of international law — it is to defend the citizens of these United States. WikiLeaks represents a grave threat to our national interests. It endangers our troops, our allies, and ultimately, our people. To obsess over the legal exegesis of prosecuting its founder is to misunderstand the moral obligation that the U.S. government must have to prioritize the welfare of its citizens over those of foreign nationals such as Assange. WikiLeaks must be stopped by whatever means necessary.

The first step is to stop WikiLeaks from disseminating any more information. President Obama should direct the National Security Administration to cripple the WikiLeaks network, to overwhelm its servers with traffic and false documents to prevent them from obtaining or releasing any further state secrets.

Next, we should help expedite Sweden’s request for an international arrest warrant on Assange (he is wanted on two rape charges in that country), and, with all possible speed, indict Assange and the rest of the WikiLeaks executive team in federal court and begin extradition procedures to bring them to the United States to stand trial. If foreign governments are reticent, we should pressure them with the full weight of our diplomatic power. If they refuse, we should ignore their protests and snatch Assange by ourselves — we do not need the permission of foreigners to defend our country.

Finally, the U.S. needs to develop a long-term capability to infiltrate and disrupt criminal networks such as Assange’s. We have plenty of success stories to model our capabilities off of — witness the FBI’s masterful penetration of DarkMarket, a former online financial crime forum. We must work hard to rebuild the trust of our allies, to guarantee that their life-and-death secrets are safe with us and will never again find their way into the hands of fanatics like Assange.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 06, 2010, 16:59:15
A situation that is the consequences of his own actions. As to the money in the bank....should a' thought of that before lying....to bad so sad

He was using his lawyer's address in the midst of what he's calling a refugee claim. I suspect he will ultimately aim for asylum in Switzerland.
What I'm concerned about is whether it's common practice to publish the details of a person's bank account and its status.


Also, the op-ed piece above made me puke in my mouth.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Michael O'Leary on December 06, 2010, 17:11:22
What I'm concerned about is whether it's common practice to publish the details of a person's bank account and its status.

The irony in that statement is incredible.  Exactly on what grounds would Assange use to complain about something being published that he didn't think should be made public?

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: aesop081 on December 06, 2010, 17:14:37
Also, the op-ed piece above made me puke in my mouth.

Why ? Everything said is right on target.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 06, 2010, 17:18:07
Why ? Everything said is right on target.

Perhaps it was aimed at the fact that Assange practically handed the bad guys a "how to" manual on blowing up our troops.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: aesop081 on December 06, 2010, 17:19:00
Perhaps it was aimed at the fact that Assange practically handed the bad guys a "how to" manual on blowing up our troops.

Indeed but i may have taken it the oposite way.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Fishbone Jones on December 06, 2010, 18:00:51
He was using his lawyer's address in the midst of what he's calling a refugee claim. I suspect he will ultimately aim for asylum in Switzerland.
What I'm concerned about is whether it's common practice to publish the details of a person's bank account and its status.


Also, the op-ed piece above made me puke in my mouth.

What makes me puke in my mouth is that someone could feel sorry for this worthless POS. A POS that could well be responsible for the preventable deaths of soldiers, possibly Canadian.

Assange is a Judas, collecting payment for betrayal, but refusing in some twisted way, to consider himself responsible for any deaths or damage.

He is the worst type of parasite.

I can't feel one bit sorry for him or his supporters and can only wish for a speedy and very long, isolated incarceration. The life of a destitute true refugee after release wouldn't upset me much either.


Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 06, 2010, 21:32:44
The irony in that statement is incredible.  Exactly on what grounds would Assange use to complain about something being published that he didn't think should be made public?

I'm not saying he's complaining - he didn't. In fact, I believe he issued a statement about it. I'm the one who's concerned about the bank publishing information - as I thought there would be some form of privacy regulations regarding accounts, and therefore would consider this a breach of their own TOS/contract/whatnot.

Why ? Everything said is right on target.

This:
Quote
Under U.S. law, we have the authority to stop them. Members of WikiLeaks are almost certainly in violation of the Espionage Act, and when it comes to espionage, it does not matter that they are foreign citizens (see U.S. v. Zehe), nor does it matter if we violate the sovereignty of another country in abducting them (See U.S. v. Verdugo-Urquidez).
I do not agree with the notion of American law above all other laws. I do not enjoy the image of sending agents into the UK or Sweden to abduct a man; that is prime American egotism. I think I'll go back to my CBC shows with their anti-American sentiments...

While we can sit and list the irreparable damage that WikiLeaks has done and will continue to do to American diplomacy, their actions are still not illegal by the standards of most countries. The laws are relatively clear for members of the Commonwealth and I'd rather stand up for the laws of the Commonwealth that we are a part of than those of America, especially the Espionage Act of 1917 which has a history of being applied to silence critics.

I have attempted to keep my opinions on here objective in relation to WikiLeaks and Assange. I'm only interested in maintaining the rights and freedoms of individuals on the internet as well as the old adage of "innocent until proven guilty". I'm certainly interested in seeing what comes out of it when Assange goes to trial, which is bound to happen at some point - unfortunately.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 06, 2010, 21:52:44
Holdfast:
How on earth could you consider banking information sacrosanct, when this dirty little ****** has put people's lives in danger: probably including some of those on this forum, for what purpose?  I'm sorry, but there must be a way to off this guy. Yeah, sure, he's got "information that he'll release if killed". I say "call his bluff" and send a message to any other wannabe anarchists out there: do anything like this, and we'll kill you.

I'm serious.  I mean, there probably has been at least one life lost (aka "broken eggs" as he put it) for this little prick's vision of Utopia.  I say that we show him Valhalla instead. 

As for going jurisdiction on foreigners, consider this little tidbit from our own National Defence Act:
Quote
60. (1) The following persons are subject to the Code of Service Discipline...
(h) an alleged spy for the enemy;
Every other case of jurisdiction assumes Canadian identity through its description (for example: "subject to such exceptions, adaptations and modifications as the Governor in Council may by regulations prescribe, a person who, pursuant to law or pursuant to an agreement between Canada and the state in whose armed forces the person is serving, is attached or seconded as an officer or non-commissioned member to the Canadian Forces")  That example is rather verbose and precise.  Para h. is rather brief.  Yes, any alleged spy for the enemy is subject to the code of service discipline.  Our code of service discipline.  So it's not just the US of A that has such laws.

As for your claims of "freedom of individuals", don't forget those of us in CADPAT who have to drive those roads, complete with juicy details handed to our enemies who would kill us.  So, I would offer that if there is a next time for a repatriation in Trenton, go attend, and give your condolences to the fallen, and explain that they had to die "so that Assange may feed his ego".



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 06, 2010, 21:55:05
As an aside, I think that the Afghan Operations game should have a new feature.  Random event #1: "Wikileaks publishes info on your patrol. You are ambushed and your body is never recovered.  Meanwhile, Assange breaks a nail and threatens to sue the USA"
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 06, 2010, 22:05:45
Ahh, the joys of undergrad-educated youth -- answers to all the world's political, economic, and social crises are so easy when "Competency - Authority - Responsibility" are merely theories to be sneered at by Marx/Foucault-quoting profs.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 06, 2010, 22:31:11
I'm serious.  I mean, there probably has been at least one life lost (aka "broken eggs" as he put it) for this little prick's vision of Utopia.  I say that we show him Valhalla instead.
Even I know he's not worthy of Valhalla.

Ahh, the joys of undergrad-educated youth -- answers to all the world's political, economic, and social crises are so easy when "Competency - Authority - Responsibility" are merely theories to be sneered at by Marx/Foucault-quoting profs.
Nice.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Jarnhamar on December 06, 2010, 22:37:52
I'm a little behind.

Where did he get all of these uber secret documents?
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 06, 2010, 22:44:26
From a private who was a traitor.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: aesop081 on December 06, 2010, 22:48:20
I'm the one who's concerned about the bank publishing information - as I thought there would be some form of privacy regulations regarding accounts, and therefore would consider this a breach of their own TOS/contract/whatnot.

It is ironic how you decry the release of his banking information yet you are fine with the release of information that WILL get people killed.

Quote
I think I'll go back to my CBC shows with their anti-American sentiments...

You might as well. We all knw that the CBC, specificaly its online comments section is a major hub of ballanced and objective thinking.

Quote
especially the Espionage Act of 1917 which has a history of being applied to silence critics.

Classic left-wing argument.....nicely done.

Quote
I'm only interested in maintaining the rights and freedoms of individuals on the internet

And most of us are interested in people not getting killed because so idiot published things he should never have had in the first place.


Quote
I'm certainly interested in seeing what comes out of it when Assange goes to trial, which is bound to happen at some point - unfortunately.

Unfortunately ?
[/quote]
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: jollyjacktar on December 07, 2010, 07:32:18
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1336274/Mac---Russian-spies-WikiLeaks.html (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1336274/Mac---Russian-spies-WikiLeaks.html)

Great cartoon, sorry I can't seem to get the image to load.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: E.R. Campbell on December 07, 2010, 07:44:47
The Globe and Mail is reporting (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/europe/wikileaks-founder-julian-assange-arrested-in-britain/article1827668/) that Assange has been arrested in the UK on the Swedish warrant. According to the report, he will likely be released on bail pending an extradition hearing.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 07, 2010, 08:29:52
I have attempted to keep my opinions on here objective in relation to WikiLeaks and Assange. I'm only interested in maintaining the rights and freedoms of individuals on the internet as well as the old adage of "innocent until proven guilty". I'm certainly interested in seeing what comes out of it when Assange goes to trial, which is bound to happen at some point - unfortunately.

DUH!

Protecting the rights of individuals?  Where has WikiLeaks protected any rights of individuals?  It has named names, and some, perhaps many, may now be facing assassination by the Taliban in Afghanistan.  I think it only proper 'Justice' to totally expose Julian Assange and his compatriots to the world.  Publish all their personal information, including their 'real' Bank accounts.   These people are not innocents.  They are not 'whistle blowers'.  They are criminals who have published State secrets and personal information of numerous individuals on various media forums.  They should all be dealt accordingly.  Your concept of them being untouchable is totally false.  They have broken laws in numerous countries, and it is ignorant folk like you who are defending them.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Jarnhamar on December 07, 2010, 09:56:10
From a private who was a traitor.

ALL of this because of a private in the army?    Personally I have problems believing that.


DUH!

Protecting the rights of individuals?  Where has WikiLeaks protected any rights of individuals?  It has named names, and some, perhaps many, may now be facing assassination by the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Right on George.   I actually get a laugh out of seeing all the closed door behind the scene comments by diplomats and crap- I find it humorous, the idea of them trying to defend the comments they made etc..
But  defenders of Wikileaks talking about freedom of speech and how Assnage needs to be protected and defended? Screw that.  His actions put humans lives in danger. Humans who took a risk trying to help their *** backwards country get on their feet again. People with families who aren't hiding behind multimillion dollar lawyers, who have everything in the world to loose.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 07, 2010, 10:26:37
ALL of this because of a private in the army?    Personally I have problems believing that.
I think this (http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2010/11/29/f-vp-stewart.html) may be part of the issue:
Quote
.... what has been even more startling than the leaks themselves is the number of Americans who appear to have had access to this vast range of sensitive communications.

People in the know say that it is in excess of two million! A figure that defies all security logic.

(....)

My first reaction on reading about the staggering number of American officials with this level of security access was "you can't be serious." But this indeed seems to be the case.

The explanation: Soon after 9/11, the Bush administration became so upset by accounts of miscommunication and confusion among government agencies that it decided not only that the left hand needed to know what the right was doing, but that all other limbs of government should be in the security loop as well.

Yes, the very top security levels, the ones that link leaders at the White House, Pentagon, State Department and intelligence chiefs, operate inside a more secure communications bubble.

This has not been breached.

But thousands of cables marked "secret" and hundreds of thousands marked "confidential" and "not for foreign eyes" poured out of 250 U.S. embassies and scores of military bases worldwide, there to be read by even junior staff in their 20s ....
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 07, 2010, 10:28:56
ALL of this because of a private in the army?    Personally I have problems believing that.


Right on George.   I actually get a laugh out of seeing all the closed door behind the scene comments by diplomats and crap- I find it humorous, the idea of them trying to defend the comments they made etc..
But  defenders of Wikileaks talking about freedom of speech and how Assnage needs to be protected and defended? Screw that.  His actions put humans lives in danger. Humans who took a risk trying to help their *** backwards country get on their feet again. People with families who aren't hiding behind multimillion dollar lawyers, who have everything in the world to loose.

I am just waiting to see Assange and gang all cry out, through their lawyers, that their personal information MUST be protected from publication.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: E.R. Campbell on December 07, 2010, 10:31:40
ALL of this because of a private in the army?    Personally I have problems believing that.
...


Actually, all this because of a perceived real "need" to share more information between US agencies (State, Defence, CIA, etc) which resulted in loading damned near everything on to SIPRNet (http://rf-web.tamu.edu/security/security%20guide/S1class/Siprnet.htm) which, while secure, is 'open' to something like three million people - including (recently demoted) Pte Bradley Manning (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/americas/wikileaks-suspect-thought-actions-might-actually-change-something/article1827622/) of the United States Army who downloaded several gigs of data on to a flash drive and gave it to Assange.
 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 07, 2010, 11:19:50
More (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-11938320) on the continued pinching of WikiLeaks' financial IV tube:
Quote
Visa Europe has begun suspending payments to whistle-blowing website Wikileaks ahead of carrying out an investigation into the organisation.

It follows a similar move by rival payments processor Mastercard on Tuesday.

Visa's announcement comes after Wikileaks' founder Julian Assange was arrested by police in London.

(....)

Wikileaks relies on online donations to fund its operations, which will now not be possible using both Visa and Mastercard debit and credit cards.

A spokeswoman for Visa Europe said its investigation would determine the nature of Wikileaks' business, and "whether it contravenes Visa operating rules".

She added that Visa Europe could not suspend payments to Wikileaks immediately, and that the process took a certain amount of time ....
:'( .... NOT
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 07, 2010, 11:38:44
What is good for the Goose isn't good for the Gander:


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Profile: Wikileaks founder Julian Assange
7 December 2010 Last updated at 06:56 ET
BBC World News
 
LINK  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-11047811)

To his fans, Julian Assange is a valiant campaigner for truth. To his critics, though, he is a publicity-seeker who has endangered lives by putting a mass of sensitive information into the public domain.

Mr Assange is described by those who have worked with him as intense, driven and highly intelligent - with an exceptional ability to crack computer codes.

He is often on the move, running Wikileaks from temporary, shifting locations.

He can go long stretches without eating, and focus on work with very little sleep, according to Raffi Khatchadourian, a reporter for the New Yorker magazine who spent several weeks travelling with him.

"He creates this atmosphere around him where the people who are close to him want to care for him to help keep him going.

"I would say that probably has something to do with his charisma," Ms Khatchadourian said.

Julian Assange has been reluctant to talk about his background, but media interest since the emergence of Wikileaks has given some insight into his influences.

He was born in Townsville, Queensland, northern Australia, in 1971, and led a nomadic childhood while his parents ran a touring theatre.

He had a child at 18, and custody battles soon followed.

Caught hacking
 
The development of the internet gave him a chance to use his early promise at maths, though this, too, led to difficulties.

In 1995 he was accused with a friend of dozens of hacking activities.

Though the group of hackers was skilled enough to track detectives tracking them, Mr Assange was eventually caught and pleaded guilty.

He was fined several thousand Australian dollars - only escaping prison on the condition that he did not reoffend.

He then spent three years working with an academic, Suelette Dreyfus, who was researching the emerging, subversive side of the internet, writing a book with her, Underground, that became a bestseller in the computing fraternity.

Ms Dreyfus described Mr Assange as a "very skilled researcher" who was "quite interested in the concept of ethics, concepts of justice, what governments should and shouldn't do".

This was followed by a course in physics and maths at Melbourne University, where he became a prominent member of a mathematics society, inventing an elaborate maths puzzle that contemporaries said he excelled at.

'Encrypt everything'
 
He began Wikileaks in 2006 with a group of like-minded people from across the web, creating a web-based "dead-letterbox" for would-be leakers.

"[To] keep our sources safe, we have had to spread assets, encrypt everything, and move telecommunications and people around the world to activate protective laws in different national jurisdictions," Mr Assange told the BBC earlier this year.

"We've become good at it, and never lost a case, or a source, but we can't expect everyone to go through the extraordinary efforts that we do."

Daniel Schmitt, a co-founder, describes Mr Assange as "one of the few people who really care about positive reform in this world to a level where you're willing to do something radical to risk making a mistake, just for the sake of working on something they believe in".

Wikileaks has published material from a number of different countries, but really hit the headlines in April, when it released video taken from a US helicopter in Iraq in 2007. The images, carried by media outlets around the world, caused widespread shock.

Mr Assange emerged into the spotlight to promote and defend the video, as well as the massive releases of classified US military documents on the Afghan and Iraq wars, in July and October.

But reporters say he can still prove elusive, and that the workings of his website remain shrouded in secrecy.

In another twist in a controversial career, he is the subject of an international arrest warrant issued by Swedish prosecutors over allegations of rape and molestation.

The claims surfaced after he visited Sweden in August and relate to separate sexual encounters with two women, which his lawyer says were entirely consensual.

Mr Assange says the allegations are part of a smear campaign against him and his whistle-blowing website.

An initial investigation in August was dropped after only a day, but in September Sweden's Director of Prosecution reopened the case.

On 24 November, a Swedish court rejected his appeal against a detention order. The case is currently being considered by the Supreme Court.

Following the Wikileaks release of thousands of classified US diplomatic cables, the deputy foreign minister of Ecuador - a strong opponent of US policy - said it would offer Mr Assange residency "without any conditions".

However, Ecuador's President Rafael Correa later said the offer had "not been approved by Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino - or the president".


=================================================================

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange refused bail

7 December 2010 Last updated at 10:14 ET
BBC World News
 
LINK  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-11937110)

The founder of the whistle-blowing website Wikileaks, Julian Assange, has told a court he will fight extradition to Sweden.

Bail was refused and the Australian, who denies sexually assaulted two women in Sweden, was remanded in custody pending a full hearing next week.

Mr Assange told a judge at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court he would contest extradition.

A Wikileaks spokesman said Mr Assange's arrest was an attack on media freedom.

Kristinn Hrafnsson said it would not stop release of more secret files and told Reuters on Tuesday: "Wikileaks is operational. We are continuing on the same track as laid out before.

"Any development with regards to Julian Assange will not change the plans we have with regards to the releases today and in the coming days."

Secret locations

He said Wikileaks was being operated by a group in London and other secret locations.

Five people, including journalist John Pilger and socialite Jemima Khan, stood up in court offering to put up sureties but bail was refused and he was remanded in custody until 14 December.

Scotland Yard said Mr Assange was arrested by appointment at a London police station at 0930 GMT.

Mr Assange is accused by the Swedish authorities of one count of rape, one of unlawful coercion and two counts of sexual molestation, alleged to have been committed in August 2010.

The allegations involve two women, Miss A and Miss W.

If the district judge rules the arrest warrant is legally correct, he could be extradited to Sweden.

But the process could take months, especially now that he has indicated he is objecting to extradition.

Police contacted his lawyer, Mark Stephens, on Monday night after receiving a European arrest warrant from the Swedish authorities.

An earlier warrant, issued last month, had not been filled in correctly.

Mr Stephens said his client was keen to learn more about the allegations and anxious to clear his name.

He said: "It's about time we got to the end of the day and we got some truth, justice and rule of law.

"Julian Assange has been the one in hot pursuit to vindicate himself to clear his good name."

Mr Stephens said Mr Assange had been trying to meet the Swedish prosecutor to find out the details about the allegations he faces.

Mr Assange has come in for criticism in the last week for the revelations made on Wikileaks.

On Monday Foreign Secretary William Hague criticised the website for publishing details of sensitive sites, including some in the UK, saying they could be targeted by terrorists.

Former US vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin has described Mr Assange as "an anti-American operative with blood on his hands".

Wikileaks was forced to switch to a Swiss host server after several US internet service providers refused to handle it.

It has also come under cyber attack and several companies, including PayPal and Amazon, have refused to supply it.

On Tuesday another company, Visa, also suspended all transactions involving Wikileaks.

Mr Assange appeared before a district judge at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court. City of Westminster deals with most extradition cases but there are huge differences in the time it takes.

Extradition can be extremely swift if the accused waives his legal rights.

But some cases, such as the extradition of computer hacker Gary McKinnon to the United States, have been going on for years because of legal challenges.

A European arrest warrant is designed to speed up the process but there can be delays.

Last week a district judge finally agreed to extradite British businessman Ian Griffin to France 18 months after he was arrested for the murder of his girlfriend in a Paris hotel. Mr Griffin had been claiming he was mentally ill.

Gerard Batten, a Ukip MEP, said the Assange case highlighted the dangers of the European arrest warrant because the judge has no power to listen to the evidence to judge if there is a prime facie case.

He said: "What concerns me is that it could be used against political dissidents. I don't know of the quality of the evidence in Mr Assange's case but it does seem that he is involved in political turmoil and intrigue and there are a lot of people keen to shut him up and there is nothing a court in the UK can do to look at the evidence before they extradite him."

Mr Assange is an Australian citizen and his supporters have written an open letter to Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard asking her to protect him.

One of the signatories, prominent barrister, Julian Burnside QC said: "First and foremost Julian Assange is an Australian citizen who is entitled to the protection of his country and does not deserve to be betrayed by his country.

"Julia Gillard has been making it virtually impossible for Assange to return to Australia where he is entitled to be. And she has even threatened to cancel his passport. That is an outrageous stance to take."

_______________________________________

Game of cat and mouse
28 Nov: First secret US diplomatic cables released on Wikileaks website
29 Nov: US brands cable leaks an "attack on the international community" and says criminal investigation ongoing
29 Nov: Former US vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin calls for Mr Assange to be "pursued with the same urgency we pursue al-Qaeda and Taliban leaders"
3 Dec: Wikileaks forced to change web address after coming under cyber attack
3 Dec: Sweden issues new European arrest warrant for Mr Assange over sex crime allegations but wording is wrong
6 Dec: Sweden issues new warrant and passes it to police in UK
7 Dec: Mr Assange is arrested in London after voluntarily walking into a police station and appears in court

==================================================================


Wikileaks defended by Anonymous hacktivists
7 December 2010 Last updated at 07:40 ET
BBC World News
 
LINK  (http://Wikileaks defended by Anonymous hacktivists)

Internet hacktivists have fired the latest salvo in the Wikileaks infowar.

A group called Anonymous has hit sites that have refused to do business with the controversial whistle-blowing site with a series of distributed denial-of-service attacks.

It mirrors similar attacks aimed at the Wikileaks site.

Targets include the Swiss bank that froze founder Julian Assange's assets and PayPal which has stopped processing donations to Wikileaks.

Anonymous is a loose-knit group of hacktivists, with links to the notorious message board 4chan

Increased traffic

A member of Anonymous who calls himself Coldblood told the BBC that "multiple things are being done".

"Websites that are bowing down to government pressure have become targets," he said.

"As an organisation we have always taken a strong stance on censorship and freedom of expression on the internet and come out against those who seek to destroy it by any means."

"We feel that Wikileaks has become more than just about leaking of documents, it has become a war ground, the people vs. the government," he said.

So far the denial-of-service attacks (DDoS), which swamp a site with so many requests that it becomes overwhelmed, have failed to take any sites offline although that is not the point of the attack, according to Coldblood.

"The idea is not to wipe them off but to give the companies a wake-up call," he said. "Companies will notice the increase in traffic and an increase in traffic means increase in costs associated with running a website."

DDoS attacks are illegal in many countries, including the UK.

Coldblood admitted that such attacks "may hurt people trying to get to these sites" but said it was "the only effective way to tell these companies that us, the people, are displeased".

Anonymous is also helping to create hundreds of mirror sites for Wikileaks, after its US domain name provider withdrew its services.

"At the last count there were 507 mirrors of Wikileaks," said Coldblood.

Ending contracts

Wikileaks has been hit by a series of denial-of-service attacks, following the release of a quarter of a million US embassy cables.

It is unclear who is behind the attacks but it seems that Wikileaks is getting too hot to handle as many of the businesses that work with the site, distance themselves from it.

On 3 December, domain name provider EveryDNS cut off service, citing the denial-of-service attacks as the reason.

Amazon also ended an agreement to host the site, saying Wikileaks failed to adhere to its terms of service.

It said that Wikileaks was unable to ensure that it "wasn't putting innocent people in jeopardy" by leaking classified documents.

Online payment company, PayPal, has permanently restricted Wikileaks' account, making it harder for supporters to make donations.

MasterCard Worldwide is also choking payments to the site.

The Swiss bank, PostFinance has closed the account of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.

In all cases, the companies have insisted their decisions are not politically motivated.

PayPal said Wikileaks' account had violated its terms of services.

PostFinance, meanwhile, claimed Assange had provided false information when opening his account.

BitTorrent file

But some have taken a different view.

French internet service provider OVH said it had no plans to end the service it provides to Wikileaks.

"OVH is neither for nor against this site. We neither asked to host this site nor not to host it. Now it's with us, we will fulfil the contract," said OVH managing director Octave Klaba.

"It's neither for the political world nor for OVH to call for or to decide on a site's closure," he added.

French industry minister Eric Besson had called for the site to be shut down, saying France could not host internet sites that "violate the confidentiality of diplomatic relations and put in danger people protected by diplomatic secrecy".

But on 6 December, a French judge declined to force OVH to shut Wikileaks down, saying the case needed further argument.

Wikileaks has amassed some high-profile enemies including Senator Joe Lieberman, who chairs the US Homeland Security Committee.

He has urged the US government to "use all legal means necessary to shut down Wikileaks before it can do more damage by releasing additional cables".

Dr Joss Wright, a research fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute thinks it could be too late to legislate Wikileaks offline.

"Wikileaks has released an encrypted file containing all of the embassy cables," says Dr Wright. "The information is already out there."

Dozens of copies of that encrypted file have been shared using peer-to-peer networks, such as BitTorrent. "Once the information is there, it's virtually impossible to stop people sharing it," said Dr Wright.

Founder of Wikileaks Julian Assange has been arrested and is due to appear at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court later.

He is accused by the Swedish authorities of sexual assault.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 07, 2010, 11:44:01
He was using his lawyer's address in the midst of what he's calling a refugee claim. I suspect he will ultimately aim for asylum in Switzerland.

I'm almost surprised he didn't head to Switzerland first.  As I recall watching a scandal unfold in Costa Rica, they will not extradite anyone to a third country.

Also, the op-ed piece above made me puke in my mouth.

More than a little, me too.

The focus on Assange is quite honestly a moot point.  Imprisoning him, killing him, etc will do nothing to silence Wikileaks because it's much bigger than one person.  I understand the idea behind it - and in many cases in broad terms it's good to shine light on dark corners, but at the same time, the damage potential of some of the information released far outweighs any benefit potentially raised by bringing the truth to light.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 07, 2010, 11:46:06
WikiLeaks: Jack Granatstein takes his gloves off
http://unambig.com/wikileaks-jack-granatstein-takes-his-gloves-off/

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 07, 2010, 12:24:48
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

WikiLeaks list of 'critical' sites: Is it a 'menu for terrorists'?

WikiLeaks releases a 'secret' US diplomatic cable on 'critical infrastructure' around the world. Was it an overlong 'raw list' of obvious key sites, or a menu for 'every extremist group in the world'?



By Mark Clayton, Staff writer
December 6, 2010
The Christian Science Monitor
 
LINK  (http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Foreign-Policy/2010/1206/WikiLeaks-list-of-critical-sites-Is-it-a-menu-for-terrorists)

Undersea cable landings off Japan, Hong Kong, and China; vital energy terminals in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Kuwait; natural gas pipelines from Canada to United States population centers; transformer plants in Mexico; vaccine manufacturers across Europe.

It's a laundry list of "critical infrastructure" – a global grab bag as big as the world ­– hundreds of sites listed in a cable marked "secret." It was compiled by US embassies and sent to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton as a cable in February 2009 – but released over the Internet by WikiLeaks (http://www.csmonitor.com/Topics/wikileaks) Sunday.

In all, the list includes well over 200 energy pipelines, undersea cables, strategic metal mines, vaccine suppliers, dams, ports, and power generators along with the names of 35 companies spread across 59 nations. The cable sought to identify "critical US foreign dependencies" that "if destroyed, disrupted or exploited, would likely have an immediate and deleterious effect on the United States."

Just how much damage (http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Latest-News-Wires/2010/1015/Wikileaks-US-says-limited-damage-from-leak-of-Afghan-war-logs) will this list do to infrastructure security or US relations with the countries where these sites reside? Will terrorists benefit a lot – or not much at all – from knowing what the US considers critical, a list some say could be pulled together by just about anyone using Google, or even an almanac and an atlas?

For instance, Saudi Arabia’s Ras Tanura port, which processes more than 4 million barrels of oil each day, the biggest oil-exporting port in the world, made the list. So did the Abqaiq Processing Center, considered the biggest crude oil processing plant in the world. Yet anyone could have found this out years earlier just by reading "Sleeping with the Devil," a bestseller by former CIA operative Robert Baer.

"Much information today that is classified as 'secret' is often available publicly (online or otherwise), even without WikiLeaks," writes Terry O'Sullivan, a University of Akron researcher who has analyzed global critical infrastructure for the Department of Homeland Security. "It's not the items on that list that are secret, per se. It's the fact that someone in the State Dept. thinks they are worthy” of that designation.

The real value to a terrorist, would be "if that list were prioritized, with specific vulnerabilities outlined," he says. "Absent that, I'd say this publication of a raw list, at least, is not any grand threat to the security of the nations involved or the United States."

Others could not disagree more.

"It's a menu for terrorists that is probably one of the most overtly destructive things WikiLeaks has done," says Anthony Cordesman, a national security analyst for the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. "This has given a global map – a menu, if not a recipe book – to every extremist group in the world. To me it would be amazing to see how WikiLeaks could rationalize this."

US officials condemned the release of the list.

"This is really irresponsible. It is tantamount to giving a group like Al Qaeda a targeting list," State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley told the Washington Post.

Even if it is just a country listing, it is in essence a prioritization with political meaning valuable to terrorists, Dr. Cordesman argues. Once the US flags something officially, you are creating a target and helping with their planning, he says.

"You are providing instructions for people who don't intuitively develop it on their own," he says. "There's an incredible amount of data in the world today, but most people in the world don't know how to use it. Terrorists aren't economists, infrastructure experts, or planners. They tend to repeat past patterns. If this was a James Bond novel and we were talking about some brilliant terrorist scientist, that's one thing. But the reality is quite different."

Others who have seen the State Department cable say the list appears to be a compendium of important but perhaps not critical sites – some mines, for instance – whose absence would not be quickly felt in the US and elsewhere. There are also a number of omissions that make it appear that junior officials simply pulled names together without a terribly thorough vetting of their importance.

Terrorists break down into three groups: those wanting to inflict damage locally, those looking for regional targets, and those with a global strategic outlook, says John Daly, a non-resident Fellow at the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute of the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University.

"There's nothing in this cable that indicates a revised wish list for the third group – the global strategists," Dr. Daly says. "But it is profoundly embarrassing to the American government.... It doesn't take a genius to figure out that impeding ship traffic through the Suez Canal would make life difficult."

There are likely some major omissions in this list, Daly notes, that make him believe that it is not a well-vetted list – more of a global "wish list" far too big for the US to police – and many targets would not have an immediate impact on the US.

"It's a list generated by gophers in various government departments and sent up the food chain and not sufficiently modified," he says. "It's not a good list in part because it's so big it would be impossible to defend them all. We can't be everywhere at once."

It also includes numerous ports and straits that would, indeed, be a problem for the US if they were blocked or compromised but are hardly unknown to terrorists, including the Strait of Hormuz and Straits of Malacca near Malaysia.

"None of the names on the list in the Gulf are news," says James Russell, a national security expert and professor at the Naval Postgraduate School. "There is a system wide effort to work with other countries to protect this infrastructure. Would it disrupt oil traffic to block the Strait of Hormuz? Very definitely. But if you're the terrorist, [the targets] are a lot easier to identify than they are to disrupt."

Malaysia, with the help of the US and other countries navies has "pretty much cleared out" the pirate problem that has plagued the Strait of Malacca, he notes.

"I can't see how it would be a blow to national security that we identified the Ras Tanura as a critical node in international energy," Dr. Russell adds. "All this cable shows is that our government is doing exactly what it is supposed to be doing – create an awareness of these important places. Out of this WikiLeak phenomenon, our government is seen to be doing in this case exactly what it’s supposed to be doing."

Other security experts agree that the release of the list is disturbing and certainly not helpful to US interests, but that unlike other WikiLeaks, for instance, the embarrassment level is far lower.

"It's a little different with this list than with diplomatic cable leaks that were private conversations that breach the trust," says Alistair Millar, director of the Center on Global Counterterrorism Cooperation. "In this case, this is largely information available to everyone if they really wanted to look."

But even if the information is not a revelation to a terrorist, it is not helpful to the US or other nations, Dr. Millar says.

"Helping organize and collate information for people who can't do it themselves isn't doing a good thing," he says. "If you're doing the homework for some of these homegrown terrorists it's not helpful – it's dangerous to our security."
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 07, 2010, 12:35:36
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

SPIEGEL Interview with Saudi Prince Turki bin Faisal


'America's Credibility Is the Victim of These Leaks'

12/06/2010
SPIEGEL ONLINE
 
LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733054,00.html)



Former Saudi Arabian intelligence head Prince Turki bin Faisal worries that the US diplomatic dispatches released by WikiLeaks could harm US credibility. He spoke with SPIEGEL about the diplomatic fallout, his country's relations with Iran and Israel, and the historical burden his country bears for the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

SPIEGEL: Your Highness, a few days before the publication of the US State Department's secret cables, US Foreign Minister Hillary Clinton called America's most crucial allies to warn them. Did you get a phone call too?


Turki: No, I am not the foreign minister.

SPIEGEL: But you did serve Saudi Arabia, Washington's most important ally in the Arab world, as ambassador to the US. Now, intimate details of that partnership have been revealed. What consequences will that have for your relations with the US?

Turki: America's credibility and honesty are the victim of these leaks. People, including officials, will no longer speak to American diplomats frankly.

SPIEGEL: What does that mean for your country?

Turki:: We have overcome more serious issues in the past. In 1945, for instance, my grandfather, King Abdulaziz, met with President Franklin D. Roosevelt aboard the USS Quincy. Roosevelt tried to convince King Abdulaziz to support the aspirations of the Jewish people suffering in Europe and allow them to migrate to Palestine. My grandfather objected. Why should the Palestinians suffer for what the Nazis had been doing? So they agreed that Roosevelt would not take any action on this issue without consulting his Arab friends.

SPIEGEL: And then?

Turki: As it turned out -- from papers which were subsequently leaked -- Roosevelt's successor Harry Truman had a Jewish poker friend. This man called him up and said: "Listen Harry, you better do this for old times' sake."

SPIEGEL: And so the US recognized Israel without informing the Saudis?

Turki: All of the former commitments went up in the air. The Kingdom was definitely affected by this and felt let down. But we had different interests as well: the development of oil resources, the anti-colonial struggle against the British and the French, the coming communist menace. So, of course, we continued our relations with the US while expressing our public opposition when the occasion arose.

SPIEGEL: And this is what you expect after the WikiLeaks revelations, too? Public opposition but the continuation of relations?

Turki: Our ties are strong and strategic. They will continue. An example of America helping us was the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Their soldiers were willing to fight and die. We won't forget that. The US is also the only country with the ability to say no to the Israelis. America is the only game in town. The Europeans are sitting on their backside and saying: America, you go first, we'll follow. The Europeans are not going to stand up for our rights in Palestine or Lebanon, neither will the Russians nor the UN. America will. And that is why our strategic relations with America are so important.

SPIEGEL: We now know from the US diplomatic cables that Israel and Saudi Arabia have one essential common interest: to keep Iran from acquiring a nuclear bomb. The dispatches show that the highest echelons of your leadership do not trust the Iranians on the nuclear issue.

Turki: Nor should we. We have always told the Iranians to be more sensible on this matter. But if you want Israel, Turkey and Saudi Arabia to play with Iran, you first need to have a level playing field. There should be a reward regime and a sanctions regime, including military sanctions, for the countries who join a Middle East zone free of weapons of mass destruction. In addition, there should be a nuclear umbrella guaranteed by the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council. This nuclear umbrella could provide Israel with protection.

SPIEGEL: According to the now published documents, King Abdullah has asked the Americans to put an end to Iran's nuclear program and to "cut off the head of the snake."

Turki: The WikiLeaks documents are a hodge podge of selectivity, inaccuracy, agenda pursuit and downright disinformation.

SPIEGEL: Is it not true that, should Israel launch an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities, Saudi Arabia would open its airspace to Israel?

Turki: I know these rumors. Most of them come from Israel.

SPIEGEL: There are people in Saudi Arabia who think the same.

Turki: Laymen maybe. I have dealt with these issues all of my life and I am telling you: Saudi Arabia would never accept to allow Israel to attack any country in the area whatever that country does.

SPIEGEL: Why don't you use your common fear of the Iranian bomb to make overtures to the Israelis?

Turki: Why should we? In 1981, Saudi Arabia proposed the acceptance of the borders of 1967 -- the King Fahd plan. Israel, however, invaded Lebanon. In 2002, then crown prince Abdullah again gathered the whole Arab world behind a peace plan, the so-called Abdullah Initiative. But what did Israel do? Nothing. No answer.

SPIEGEL: Men like yourself and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have the same fears concerning the Iranian bomb. You are of roughly the same generation and you both have studied in the US. Why don't you talk to each other?

Turki: Netanyahu capitalizes on the Iranian issue. He uses the threat from Tehran to marshal Israeli public opinion as well as global opinion. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad does the same thing, by the way. On no other issue does he have as much support as on the nuclear issue. It is like two cocks fighting over the same hen.

SPIEGEL: Why, for the sake of peace, don't you take the risk? Why don't you just invite Netanyahu over to Riyadh?

Turki: I don't think we should. Our population would accuse us of succumbing to Israeli pressure. Israel's settlements -- which I call colonies -- would gain legitimacy if we spoke to Israel, wherever it might be.

SPIEGEL: Why is your position not accepted by the US -- your and Israel's principle ally?

Turki: The Israelis have worked harder, and in a smarter way, than we have to infiltrate the decision-making process in America. Whatever they want, they can easily find 300 Congressional representatives to support their proposal. We have no such speakers or spokesmen.

SPIEGEL: You can hardly blame the Israelis for this situation.


Turki: Absolutely. This is why the Israelis have beaten us, whether in America or in Europe. They have just been smarter.

SPIEGEL: Three weeks ago Saudi intelligence helped prevent a terror attack on Europe or America. You informed German officials of suspicious packages from Yemen. For the first time since Sept. 11, 2001, Saudi Arabia received positive headlines abroad in the connection with terror prevention.

Turki: There has been a fundamental change in intelligence and information work. When I was in intelligence, the rule was: If I give you a piece of information, then both of us would make sure that nobody knew about it. That's how we protected our sources. There has been a shift because of the increased availability of information. Today I can go on Google and find things for which I would have had to send out hundreds of agents before. WikiLeaks is a perfect example.

Part 2: 'Why Should the Taliban Negotiate in the First Place?'


SPIEGEL: You have personally met Osama bin Laden five times, most recently in the summer of 1990. If you were in charge of operations today, where would you look for him?

Turki: That is very easy. He is in the border area between Afghanistan and Pakistan. In the early days after 9/11, America searched for him from mountain to mountain, village to village, cave to cave. But then, suddenly, it stopped because it withdrew its assets from Afghanistan to Iraq. We need another campaign to search for him -- led by the United States but including all countries who have a bone to pick with bin Laden. Not just Saudi Arabia, but also Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Egypt, Spain and Indonesia.

SPIEGEL: Saudi Arabia couldn't do it alone?

Turki: Neither our means, nor America's nor those of any single country are enough for such a campaign. If the will is there to catch him, he can be found like Saddam was found eventually. But this determination is lacking. During his election campaign President Barack Obama promised to concentrate again on searching for terrorists. But now, General David Petraeus' philosophy foresees beating the Taliban militarily to bring them to the negotiating table. No one speaks about bin Laden anymore. This is where the campaign has gone wrong.

SPIEGEL: What difference would capturing bin Laden make?

Turki: Only when bin Laden is eliminated one way or another will the US and the rest of the world be able to declare victory. Once you can declare victory, withdrawing your troops from Afghanistan becomes legitimate.

SPIEGEL: NATO, however, has just recently decided to withdraw in 2014.

Turki: Then why should the Taliban negotiate in the first place? All they have to do is wait.

SPIEGEL: You were head of Saudi Arabia's General Intelligence Directorate for 24 years before stepping down on August 31, 2001. Exactly 11 days later, al-Qaida struck in New York and Washington. Do you blame yourself for not having prevented the attacks?

Turki: Not just me. The whole world should regret not having done more to get these people. Our mistake was to deal with this new type of a terrorist organization the way we had dealt with previous organizations such as Baader Meinhof or the Red Brigades. We used to exchange our information only bilaterally, we did not use the the collaborative approach as we did in the recent case of the Yemen bombs. All this although by May 2001 there were warning signs from all sides that something was going to happen. But even within the US, the FBI and the CIA were not exchanging their information. So, of course, we did not do enough.

SPIEGEL: Where were you on Sept. 11, 2001?

Turki: I was in Jeddah. Then-King Fahd was giving a lunch for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir. One of the princes sitting close to me told me he had just got a text message: An airplane had hit one of the Twin Towers. At first I thought: maybe an accident? But when the second plane hit, I obviously wanted to get home to watch CNN.

SPIEGEL: Did you immediately make the connection to bin Laden, to Saudi Arabia?

Turki: No. My inclination at the time was that the attack could have Balkan derivatives. I thought about Bosnia, Kosovo, the American involvement there.

SPIEGEL: But it was your boys instead.

Turki: When the Americans announced their names, my instinct was to accept it as a fact. I had no reason to question the sincerity of that report. I am not a skeptic. I have never doubted that it was bin Laden, nor was the operation too complicated for someone like bin Laden to do it. But, "your boys?" These people were Saudis, but they were trained outside the country. Their life within the Kingdom was relatively eventless. Two of them were teachers, one was unemployed. As I have said before: al-Qaida came out of the hills of Afghanistan, not from the deserts of Saudi Arabia.

SPIEGEL: Still, it is your country which is now most associated with the name of al-Qaida.

Turki: It is a burden that will weigh on us forever. It will be an issue of guilt and regret for the rest of our lives, if not for those of our children and grandchildren.

SPIEGEL: Your Highness, thank you very much for this interview.

Interview conducted by Alexander Smoltczyk and Bernard Zand

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 07, 2010, 13:24:40
I won't post the link, but while searching for something else on Google, guess where the list o' things showed up?  On an Arabic-language jihadi discussion forum - and as the first hit on first page of the Google results.  Thanks for sharing, Julian.... :rage:
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 07, 2010, 13:34:16
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

The Cable Guy

Julian Assange Becomes the US's Public Enemy No. 1

12/07/2010
By Marcel Rosenbach and Holger Stark
SPIEGEL ONLINE
 
LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733154,00.html)

He may be on the short list for Time magazine's "person of the year," but many Americans consider Julian Assange to be a criminal and a terrorist. The WikiLeaks founder has been fighting a battle on several fronts since the publication of the diplomatic cables. He has now been arrested in London.

Wherever Julian Assange turned up in recent weeks, there was always a noticeably well-dressed young woman at his side. Jennifer Robinson, an attorney at a London law firm, has served as Assange's legal protection insurance for the last few weeks. She kept several sets of legal documents in her purse, for the event that Scotland Yard or some other law enforcement agency decided to arrest the Australian.

Assange now finds himself in need of such expert legal protection. He was arrested by British police in London on Tuesday on a European warrant issued by Swedish prosecutors. London's Metropolitan Police said in a statement that Assange had been arrested at around 9:30 a.m. local time, by appointment at a police station in the British capital. "He is accused by the Swedish authorities of one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation and one count of rape, all alleged to have been committed in August 2010," the statement read. Assange was due to appear before a London court later on Tuesday.

Assange's lawyers had earlier said that he would meet with police to talk about the European arrest warrant. "We are in the process of making arrangements to meet with police by consent," lawyer Mark Stephens said on Monday.

As of last week, there was no longer any doubt that the Swedish authorities were determined to catch the 39-year-old at all costs. Interpol issued a "Red Notice" seeking Assange's arrest, and Scotland Yard's Serious Organized Crime Agency confirmed that it was familiar with the case.

But like everything else relating to the WikiLeaks founder, this private case has also become a political issue. The man who had sent a shockwave through global politics since the publication of the American embassy cables (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,732819,00.html) two weekends ago had become a hunted man.

He has also become the Americans' latest public enemy, after having challenged the world's most powerful nation and made its secrets public for all to see.

'Assange Should Be Assassinated'

While Washington's reactions to the leaks of military documents from the Afghanistan (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/war_logs/) and Iraq (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/iraq_war_logs/) wars were relatively calm, the tone has now changed. Last week, Attorney General Eric Holder officially confirmed that the US Justice Department could invoke the Espionage Act of 1917 to take legal action against the WikiLeaks staff. Under the law, the disclosure of secret military information is a crime. According to Holder, an amendment of the law is also an option for the future. "To the extent there are gaps in our laws, we will move to close those gaps," Holder said. At the end of last week, American government agencies instructed their employees not to visit the WikiLeaks website, while institutions like the US Library of Congress blocked access to the site.

Republican Congressman Peter King wants the State Department to examine whether WikiLeaks can be classified as a terrorist organization, which would make it easier for US authorities to hunt down Assange and his supporters. Tom Flanagan, a professor at the University of Calgary and a former adviser to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, offered an even more radical suggestion. "Assange should be assassinated," he said on Canadian television. "I wouldn't feel unhappy if Assange disappeared." Flanagan later apologized for his comments.

Prominent politicians like Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman have also joined the anti-WikiLeaks camp. Last week, Lieberman called on Internet companies to stop providing WikiLeaks with server capacity.

His appeal was successful. Amazon Web Services informed WikiLeaks in an email last week that its activities violated Amazon's terms of service. In addition to being the world's largest online merchant, Amazon also rents out server capacity. WikiLeaks was already using Amazon servers when it leaked the Iraq reports in October, and hundreds of thousands of users viewed the US embassy cables on American servers -- until Amazon pulled the plug, that is.

The Infowar Has Started

Since then, Amazon and Lieberman have come under sharp attack. Daniel Ellsberg, America's most famous whistleblower, publicly called for a boycott of Amazon, saying: "I'm disgusted by Amazon's cowardice and servility." On Friday, John Perry Barlow, an ex-hippie and co-founder of the civil liberties group Electronic Frontier Foundation, addressed Internet activists with the following Twitter message: "The first serious infowar is now engaged. The field of battle is WikiLeaks. You are the troops."

Amazon sought to justify its decision by claiming that terminating its relationship with WikiLeaks had nothing to do with politics. It argued that it had to act as it did because WikiLeaks was disseminating content to which it did not have the rights.

The dispute over servers was accompanied by an attack on the wikileaks.org address. The website's problems began on Nov. 28. Internet statistics site show that wikileaks.org was shut down hours before the planned publication of the first cables by large numbers of simultaneous attempts to access the site. Using Twitter, a certain "th3j35t3r," also known as "The Jester," claimed responsibility for a wave of attacks. According to the Jester, WikiLeaks was endangering the lives of soldiers and jeopardizing international relations. Prior to the WikiLeaks attacks, Jester, who claims to be a former soldier who worked in special operations, had earned a reputation for attacking Islamist sites. Using Special Forces jargon for having eliminated a terrorist, Jester tweeted: "Tango down."

The attacks did not subside during the week. In fact, they intensified. On Tuesday the WikiLeaks team, apparently impressed, tweeted that they were under serious attack once again, at a rate of "more than 10 gigabits per second." The organization has since shifted to servers in France, but it is also beginning to lose ground there. French Industry Minister Eric Besson calls it "unacceptable" for a French server to harbor a website "that has violated the secrecy of diplomatic relations and put people in danger." The Internet company in question has since appealed to a court and requested a legal review.

Part 1: Julian Assange Becomes the US's Public Enemy No. 1
Part 2: A Battle for the Internet (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733154-2,00.html)
Part 3: Parallel Affairs in Stockholm (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733154-3,00.html)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 07, 2010, 14:17:16
WikiLeaks

Related articles, background features and opinions about this topic. (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/wikileaks/)
SPIEGEL ONLINE
 
LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/wikileaks/)

US Dispatches from Mali
German Hesitancy May Have Worsened Saharan Hostage Drama (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733387,00.html)

Fear of Russia
NATO Developed Secret Contingency Plans for Baltic States (http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,733361,00.html)

The Many Headed Hydra
A Difficult US Fight to Choke Off Terror Finance (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733340,00.html)

'Key Foreign Policy Issue'
US Attempts to Influence World Climate Body (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733273,00.html)

US Involvement in Iraq
A Lot of Blood for Little Oil (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,732984,00.html)

Blinkered View of Iraq
Diplomats Were Misled by Saddam's 'Cordial' Manner (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733153,00.html)

Ex-National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski
Spokespersons of US Right 'In Most Cases Stunningly Ignorant' (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733079,00.html)

'Redder than Red'
An American Portrait of China's Next Leader (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,732972,00.html)

US Dispatches from Beijing
'True Democracy' Within China's Politburo? (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,732963,00.html)

Saudi Prince Turki bin Faisal on WikiLeaks
'People Will No Longer Speak to American Diplomats Frankly' (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,732950,00.html)

American-Austrian Tensions
US Diplomats Gripe over Vienna's Limited World View (http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,732941,00.html)


More articles (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/wikileaks/archiv.html)








Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 07, 2010, 14:35:04
Ex-National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski
Spokespersons of US Right 'In Most Cases Stunningly Ignorant' (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733079,00.html)
Excellent perspective:*  "Well, it's catastrophic but not serious."


Another interesting comment:
Quote
Brzezinski: I am very worried that most Americans are close to total ignorance about the world. They are ignorant. That is an unhealthy condition in a country in which foreign policy has to be endorsed by the people if it is to be pursued. And it makes it much more difficult for any president to pursue an intelligent policy that does justice to the complexity of the world.
...which, unfortunately, is 100-percent applicable to most Canadians as well.


Edit to add:  And in another example of media bias (related to an earlier thread with CBC Reporter James Cudmore), notice the headline chosen: "Spokespersons of US Right 'In Most Cases Stunningly Ignorant' " when the article was overwhelmingly on how the WikiLeaks "revelations" were hardly newsworthy, but simply mirroring what the US diplomats had been saying openly (or for assessments of foreign leaders' personalities, political cartoons had been openly caricaturizing) for ages.





* Which is to say, I agree with him  ;)  For a guy that went to McGill, he turned out to be OK
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 07, 2010, 23:19:01
WikiLeaks, Assange, and the major media’s not so amazing double standard
http://unambig.com/wikileaks-and-the-major-medias-not-so-amazing-double-standard/

Quote
...
The point being that the major media are doing their damndest to distance Triple A’s criminal problems from WikiLeaks itself. Which would not have been the case were the shoe on the right foot.

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 08, 2010, 09:51:58
Ah!  It is all the victim's fault.  If they didn't have secrets, WikiLeaks wouldn't expose them.    :nod:

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.



Wikileaks: Australia FM blames US, not Julian Assange

8 December 2010 Last updated at 05:28 ET
BBC ASIA-PACIFIC
 
LINK  (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-11945558)

Australia's foreign minister has said the US is to blame for the release of thousands of diplomatic cables on Wikileaks, not its Australian founder, Julian Assange.

Kevin Rudd said the release raised questions about US security.

Mr Rudd said he did not "give a damn" about criticism of him in the cables.

Mr Assange, arrested in the UK over sex crime allegations in Sweden, has accused the Australian government of "disgraceful pandering" to the US.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard had earlier called Mr Assange's release of the cables "grossly irresponsible".

Over the past two weeks, Wikileaks has released thousands of classified messages from US envoys around the world, from more than 250,000 it has been given.

Washington has called their publication "irresponsible" and an "attack on the international community".

'First class job'

In an interview with Reuters news agency, Mr Rudd said: "Mr Assange is not himself responsible for the unauthorised release of 250,000 documents from the US diplomatic communications network. The Americans are responsible for that."

Mr Rudd, the former prime minister who was replaced by Julia Gillard in June, added: "I think there are real questions to be asked about the adequacy of [the US] security systems and the level of access that people have had to that material.

"The core responsibility, and therefore legal liability, goes to those individuals responsible for that initial unauthorised release."

The White House has ordered US government agencies to tighten their handling of classified documents in the wake of the Wikileaks releases.

Mr Rudd was dismissed in one leaked US cable as a "mistake-prone control freak".

In cables published by the Sydney Morning Herald (http://www.smh.com.au/technology/technology-news/us-condemns-rudd-20101207-18obr.html) former US ambassador Robert McCallum said Mr Rudd made "snap announcements without consulting other countries or within the Australian government".

The US was also angered at what it called Mr Rudd's "self-serving and inaccurate leaking" of a phone call with then US President George W Bush in which Mr Rudd was reported as saying: "Stunned to hear Bush say, 'What's the G20?'"

Mr Rudd shrugged off the criticism, saying: "I'm sure much worse has been written about me in the past and probably much worse will be written about me in the future but frankly, mate, I don't care.

"My job's just to act in Australia's national interest as Australia's foreign minister. I don't, frankly, give a damn about this sort of thing. You just get on with it."

Ms Gillard defended Mr Rudd, saying: "He's bringing [his] expertise to bear for the Australian nation and doing an absolutely first class job."

Mr Assange has been highly critical of the Australian government's stance on the release of the cables.

In an opinion piece in The Australian (http://www.theaustralian.com.au/in-depth/wikileaks/dont-shoot-messenger-for-revealing-uncomfortable-truths/story-fn775xjq-1225967241332) on Wednesday, Mr Assange accused the Australian government of "disgraceful pandering" to the Americans and of putting the powers of the government fully at the disposal of the US.

In the piece headlined "Don't shoot the messenger for revealing uncomfortable truths", he says: "Democratic societies need a strong media and Wikileaks is part of that media. The media helps keep government honest."

He adds: "The Australian attorney-general is doing everything he can to help a US investigation clearly directed at framing Australian citizens and shipping them to the US."

Mr Assange has been refused bail by a court in London but has vowed to fight extradition to Sweden.

He denies sexually assaulting two women in Sweden but was remanded in custody pending a hearing next week.

Mr Assange's lawyer, Mark Stephens, has claimed the charges are "politically motivated".

On a visit to Serbia on Wednesday, Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said there had been no contact with US authorities about the possible extradition of Mr Assange from Sweden to the US.

The US has begun a criminal investigation and vowed to punish anyone found responsible for illegal leaks.

No-one has been charged with passing the diplomatic files to Wikileaks, but suspicion has fallen on US Army private Bradley Manning, an intelligence analyst arrested in Iraq in June and charged over an earlier leak.


=======================================================

Yes, security protocols properly enforced would have prevented WikiLeaks from acquiring these secrets, but as we see, some people have shown themselves to feel that they are above such protocols. 

As for the US authorities looking at the possible extradition of Mr Assange from Sweden to the US not making contact at this time, it only seems likely that such an opportunity has not escaped the minds of US authorities and something along those lines is already being instigated.  Perhaps they will not even bother with Sweden, but focus on British authorities first in the case that Assange successfully wins his case about extradition to Sweden.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 08, 2010, 10:09:55
Ah!  It is all the victim's fault.  If they didn't have secrets, WikiLeaks wouldn't expose them.    :nod:
It goes without saying
If you have nothing good to say, then....... ;D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 08, 2010, 10:50:21
Absolutely brilliant.   ::)

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

MasterCard, Swiss bank, Swedish prosecutors are focus of retaliation


WikiLeaks backlash targets websites


Last Updated: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 | 9:18 AM ET | The Associated Press
CBC
 
LINK  (http://www.cbc.ca/consumer/story/2010/12/08/con-wikileaks-backlash.html)

WikiLeaks supporters struck back Wednesday at perceived enemies of founder Julian Assange, attacking the websites of Swedish prosecutors, the Swedish lawyer whose clients have accused Assange of sexual crimes, and the Swiss authority that froze Assange's bank account.

MasterCard, which pulled the plug on its relationship with WikiLeaks on Tuesday, also seemed to be having severe technological problems.

The online vengeance campaign appeared to be taking the form of denial of service attacks in which computers across the Internet are harnessed — sometimes surreptitiously — to jam target sites with mountains of requests for data, knocking them out of commission.

The online attacks are part of a wave of online support for WikiLeaks that is sweeping the Internet. Twitter was choked with messages of solidarity Wednesday, while the site's Facebook page hit one million fans.

Offline, the organization is under pressure on many fronts. Assange, its founder, is in a U.K. prison fighting extradition to Sweden over the sex crimes case, while moves by Swiss Postfinance, MasterCard, PayPal Inc. and others have impaired the secret-spilling group's ability to raise money. The U.S. government is also investigating whether Assange can be prosecuted for espionage or other offences.

'We want transparency and we counter censorship .…'— Message from website activists

Per Hellqvist, a security specialist with the software company Symantec, said a loose network of web activists called "Anonymous" appeared to be behind the attacks. The group, which has previously focused on the Church of Scientology and the music industry, has promised to come to Assange's aid by knocking offline websites seen as hostile to WikiLeaks.

"While we don't have much of an affiliation with WikiLeaks, we fight for the same reasons," the group said in a statement on its website. "We want transparency and we counter censorship .…This is why we intend to utilize our resources to raise awareness, attack those against, and support those who are helping lead our world to freedom and democracy."

It was not immediately clear which attacks the group was responsible for, although activists on Twitter and other forums cheered the news of each one in turn.

MasterCard website targeted

The website for MasterCard, which has said it will no longer process donations to WikiLeaks, was either down or sluggish early Wednesday. The company said it was experiencing "heavy traffic" but did not elaborate.

The website for Swedish lawyer Claes Borgstrom, who represents the two women at the centre of Assange's sex crimes case, was unreachable Wednesday.

The Swiss postal system's financial arm, Postfinance, which shut down Assange's new bank account on Monday, was also having trouble. Spokesman Alex Josty said the website buckled under a barrage of traffic Tuesday, but the onslaught seems to have eased off.

"Yesterday it was very, very difficult, then things improved overnight," he told The Associated Press. "But it's still not entirely back to normal."

While one Internet company after another has cut its ties to the websites amid intense U.S. government pressure — Amazon.com, PayPal, EveryDNS — the French government's effort to stop a company there from hosting WikiLeaks has failed — at least for now.

The Web services company OVH, which is among those hosting the current site — wikileaks.ch — sought a ruling by two courts about the legality of hosting WikiLeaks in France. The judges said this week they couldn't decide on the highly technical case right away.

WikiLeaks evoked the ire of the U.S. government last spring when it posted a gritty war video taken by Army helicopters showing troops gunning down two unarmed Reuters journalists. Since then, the organization has leaked some 400,000 classified U.S. war files from Iraq and 76,000 from Afghanistan that U.S. military officials say included names of U.S. informants and other information that could put people's lives at risk.

The latest leaks have involved private U.S. diplomatic cables that included frank U.S. assessments of foreign nations and their leaders.


Comments (http://www.cbc.ca/consumer/story/2010/12/08/con-wikileaks-backlash.html#socialcomments)    [The usual suspects.   ::) ]
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 08, 2010, 11:13:00
"Do what we say or we'll interfere with your way of life".  Sounds like cyber-terrorism to me.  I agree that Assange is the tip of an iceberg; however, just because stopping him wouldn't stop Wikileaks, he cannot be allowed to be set free, IMHO.  And keep following the money trail: sooner or later even hippies have to pay their bills.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 08, 2010, 11:13:47
Having looked at the list, nothing there struck me as tremendously surprising.  Communications nodes.  Energy infrastructure.  Facilities that make specialized components for military hardware.  Vaccine plants, medical facilities.  I get the distinct impression that one who wanted this information could fairly easily pull it together from open sources.  Sure, they've saved a little time getting it leaked, but not a great deal when you think about it.

I won't post the link, but while searching for something else on Google, guess where the list o' things showed up?  On an Arabic-language jihadi discussion forum - and as the first hit on first page of the Google results.  Thanks for sharing, Julian.... :rage:
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 08, 2010, 11:17:30
MasterCard, Swiss bank, Swedish prosecutors are focus of retaliation


WikiLeaks backlash targets websites


(http://knowyourmeme.com/system/icons/554/original/facepalm.jpg?1248715065)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 08, 2010, 12:43:04
There is one way to kill Wikileaks dead. Get proof(make some if you can't find any) of Wikileaks SELLING info. That would be espionage.  Otherwise we're screwed. Bradley Manning will take all the heat for stealing them.

BTW Where were you guys 3 years(memory) ago when Wikileaks published lists of NATO part numbers and then got a hold of manifests for shipments to Afghanistan. That was a serious breach.  I liked the gossip but the new critical infrastructure cable is a different story.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on December 08, 2010, 13:02:09
Well they do take donations to keep themselves in operation.... so technically they're being paid to keep taking and posting information. A lawyer type could probably easily link this to espionage.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 08, 2010, 13:07:33
There is one way to kill Wikileaks dead. Get proof (make some if you can't find any) of Wikileaks SELLING info. That would be espionage.
  ???

Under what statue does illegally acquired information have to be sold for it to be espionage?
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 08, 2010, 13:27:33
Edit to add:  And in another example of media bias (related to an earlier thread with CBC Reporter James Cudmore), notice the headline chosen: "Spokespersons of US Right 'In Most Cases Stunningly Ignorant' " when the article was overwhelmingly on how the WikiLeaks "revelations" were hardly newsworthy, but simply mirroring what the US diplomats had been saying openly (or for assessments of foreign leaders' personalities, political cartoons had been openly caricaturizing) for ages.
1)  If Der S works like many publications (including newspapers), the reporter doesn't write the headline, so it might reflect either editor bias or, if the headline is way outta whack, poor reading of the material by the headline writer.**
2)  I've heard that some publications (perhaps including Canadian pubs?) lately are looking offshore for editing services (http://www.sourcingnotes.com/content/view/12/13/) (with the Canadian Press offering to sell such services as an alternative to "using offshore labour" (http://www.thecanadianpress.com/services_for_cp_member_newspapers.aspx?id=3346)), so it's not impossible the headline may be written by someone in a cubicle somewhere far, far away.

** - Splitting the "media bias" hair, I know, but at least narrowing down the range of culprits  ;D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 08, 2010, 14:17:33
Sure, they've saved a little time getting it leaked, but not a great deal when you think about it.
Oh, no, not a big deal at all.  Just doing "their" work for "them".  No problem AT ALL.  ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 08, 2010, 15:15:41
There is one way to kill Wikileaks dead. Get proof(make some if you can't find any) of Wikileaks SELLING info. That would be espionage.  Otherwise we're screwed. Bradley Manning will take all the heat for stealing them.

It won't kill anything, though.  Wikileaks isn't one guy. It's not going to go away.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 08, 2010, 15:18:45
Not really, no.  The obvious targets on the list that would actually do real damage they've already attacked, like the Qatari LNG terminal for example.  Okay, yes, I didn't realize that SanofiPasteur's polio vaccine plant was "critical infrastructure", but it's also not that prime a target unless Johnny Foreigner also has some plan to trigger a polio outbreak then it's also not going to be some massive weakness.

Not arguing that the release of this stuff is bad - just that it's simply not an "end of the world" scenario.  Nor were most of the cables.  Slightly embarrassing to have the raw feed aired, fine, but truly destructive to diplomacy, I don't think so.

Oh, no, not a big deal at all.  Just doing "their" work for "them".  No problem AT ALL.  ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 08, 2010, 15:42:10
It won't kill anything, though.  Wikileaks isn't one guy. It's not going to go away.
Then I suppose we do nothing.  Or we can hack their sites and deny their funds every time they pop up.  Make examples out of the ones we do catch.  I mean, frig, there are child molesters out there, but just because we can't stop them, doesn't mean we don't stop fighting them.  Even though 98% of the crap they posted was pure gossip material, when they crossed that line, they ought to be sought out and stopped.  Yes, I realise others will rise up, but I refuse to let that little ****** (and his ilk) think that they can do whatever they wish without consequences.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 08, 2010, 17:22:20
Make examples of who, how?  Manning is going to be punished by law for his actions, but Assange I can't see how they can do much to him.  He is not a US citizen, nor was he present in the US when the events occured.  If you're suggesting some sort of extrajudicial repercussions, I cannot support that.  If the US (or any other aggrieved party) wishes to seek to cut off their funding by moral suasion of intermediaries, or whatever else, then fine.  However, I don't see that there's much that effectively can be done because of the problem of the decentralization of the participants.  Back to the point I made, that's an illustration - extracting whatever form of justice one might on Assange will neither put the genie back in the bottle, nor stop WL.  I guess it's time everyone reassess their security efforts in light of it.

Then I suppose we do nothing.  Or we can hack their sites and deny their funds every time they pop up.  Make examples out of the ones we do catch.  I mean, frig, there are child molesters out there, but just because we can't stop them, doesn't mean we don't stop fighting them.  Even though 98% of the crap they posted was pure gossip material, when they crossed that line, they ought to be sought out and stopped.  Yes, I realise others will rise up, but I refuse to let that little ****** (and his ilk) think that they can do whatever they wish without consequences.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Altair on December 08, 2010, 17:44:03
There is one way to kill Wikileaks dead. Get proof(make some if you can't find any) of Wikileaks SELLING info. That would be espionage.  Otherwise we're screwed. Bradley Manning will take all the heat for stealing them.

BTW Where were you guys 3 years(memory) ago when Wikileaks published lists of NATO part numbers and then got a hold of manifests for shipments to Afghanistan. That was a serious breach.  I liked the gossip but the new critical infrastructure cable is a different story.

That pretty twisted.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 08, 2010, 18:56:54
That pretty twisted.

Indeed.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 08, 2010, 19:41:01
Pretty twisted, but you watch. Currently Wikileaks can call itself a journalistic organization. Because of the importance of the 4th estate in a functioning democracy this gives them a great deal of protection. Bradley Manning will be crucified but wikileaks will continue. There is no legal framework for winning a prosecution. No more than prosecuting Reuters, Der Spiegel or the New York Times for publishing them.

The "rape" charge is trumped up by a jilted lover and the hand of the US State Department is all over the reopening of the case. Nothing will come of it except a public black eye for Sweden's screwed up legal system and a thank you from Uncle Sam. States do dark deeds to protect their secrets. I expect a story about wikleaks selling secrets any day now. Then a proper espionage case can start. Or the US can just back down and take their lumps. Bank of America is next and then the Russian oligarchs. Everybody will get a turn.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 08, 2010, 19:46:31
Indeed, the attacks on Wikileaks seem to hold the potential to be far worse than Wikileaks itself...

Indeed.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 08, 2010, 20:18:52
I expect a story about wikleaks selling secrets any day now. Then a proper espionage case can start.
You've made this assertion twice now, that information selling is a pre-condition of an espionage charge.

What are you basing that on?
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Fishbone Jones on December 08, 2010, 20:44:05
Pretty twisted, but you watch. Currently Wikileaks can call itself a journalistic organization. Because of the importance of the 4th estate in a functioning democracy this gives them a great deal of protection. Bradley Manning will be crucified but wikileaks will continue. There is no legal framework for winning a prosecution. No more than prosecuting Reuters, Der Spiegel or the New York Times for publishing them.

The "rape" charge is trumped up by a jilted lover and the hand of the US State Department is all over the reopening of the case. Nothing will come of it except a public black eye for Sweden's screwed up legal system and a thank you from Uncle Sam. States do dark deeds to protect their secrets. I expect a story about wikleaks selling secrets any day now. Then a proper espionage case can start. Or the US can just back down and take their lumps. Bank of America is next and then the Russian oligarchs. Everybody will get a turn.

Can I have that crystal ball when you're done with it? Unless you're an intelligence insider for the US, I suggest you keep your innuendo to yourself. Speculation is one thing, making statements as fact, unless you cite credible sources, is something altogether different. Don't leave the Site owner open to legal action for unsubstantiated statements. Precursors like 'In my opinion' ..... or 'I believe that' would help. However, once again, citations also go a long way to establishing the credibility of your statements.

Milnet.ca Staff
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 08, 2010, 20:54:22
'Hacktivists' strike back

Call it the war of the hackers.

As enemies of WikiLeaks seek to shut down or sabotage the site leaking sensitive U.S. diplomatic documents, an army of counter-hackers has targeted such companies as MasterCard and Visa for supporting the efforts to muzzle WikiLeaks and its founder.

The information war brewing online — with WikiLeaks playing the part of the battlefield — escalated Wednesday when visa.com and mastercard.com became the latest companies targeted by the "hacktivists," known collectively as Anonymous, which also struck banks and companies it feels oppose WikiLeaks and its founder, Julian Assange.

Earlier this week, the group also claimed responsibility for attacks against the online payment service PayPal and the Swiss bank that froze Assange's account. These attacks, which flood the targeted websites and make them inaccessible, are part a campaign the group calls Operation Payback.

"These people are hacktivists," said Rui Pereira, who teaches at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. "They have an agenda they're promoting, and this is a mechanism they're using to raise awareness of what they're about."

Operation Payback launched three months ago with a manifesto to take on the entertainment industry and anti-piracy groups, and essentially 'pay back' any websites perceived to impede an attempt at making information free and available.

"What is this all about? And what does it have to do with censorship and Operation Payback?" Anonymous wrote on its website, which also went down Wednesday afternoon, a few hours before tweeting that Facebook had blocked the Operation Payback page for violating the social networking site's terms of use.

"While we don't have much of an affiliation with WikiLeaks, we fight for the same reasons. We want transparency and we counter censorship. The attempts to silence WikiLeaks are long strides closer to a world where we cannot say what we think and are unable to express our opinions and ideas."
article continues here (http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/Hacktivists+strike+back/3948181/story.html#ixzz17ZTl7sJ0)
                     (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 08, 2010, 21:05:05
It is my opinion of course. I have no affiliations with anything other than the medical community.

Wikileaks has no pending charges against them and even if there were some laid "innocent till proven guilty" should still apply. Most of the things done against wikileaks are illegal already. Denial of service attacks, the release of his personal info by Swedish prosecutors(ironic I know), removing their DNS hosting, disabling their funding, etc. With that behavior as a baseline it is logical to predict an escalation as more critical cables are released.

Wikileaks freedom of the press protection is the perfect safe harbour. That was the only way I could imagine removing that safe harbour. If I thought of it many others must have as well. Time will tell.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 08, 2010, 22:13:37
Quote
Hackers Give Web Companies a Test of Free Speech

A hacking free-for-all has exploded on the Web, and Facebook and Twitter are stuck in the middle.

On Wednesday, anonymous hackers took aim at companies perceived to have harmed WikiLeaks after its release of a flood of confidential diplomatic documents. MasterCard, Visa and PayPal, which had cut off people’s ability to donate money to WikiLeaks, were hit by attacks that tried to block access to the companies’ Web sites and services.

To organize their efforts, the hackers have turned to sites like Facebook and Twitter. That has drawn these Web giants into the fray and created a precarious situation for them.

Both Facebook and Twitter — but particularly Twitter — have received praise in recent years as outlets for free speech. Governments trying to control the flow of information have found it difficult to block people from voicing their concerns or setting up meetings through the sites.

At the same time, both Facebook and Twitter have corporate aspirations that hinge on their ability to serve as ad platforms for other companies. This leaves them with tough public relations and business decisions around how they should handle situations as politically charged as the WikiLeaks developments.

Some internet experts say the situation highlights the complexities of free speech issues on the Internet, as grassroots Web companies evolve and take central control over what their users can make public. Clay Shirky, who studies the Internet and teaches at New York University, said that although the Web is the new public sphere, it is actually “a corporate sphere that tolerates public speech.”

Marcia Hofmann, a lawyer at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said, “Any Internet user who cares about free speech or has a controversial or unpopular message should be concerned about the fact that intermediaries might not let them express it.”

She added, “Your free speech rights are only as strong as the weakest intermediary.”

The problem came into on Wednesday, when a group calling itself Anonymous started Operation Payback spent much of the day posting notes on Facebook and Twitter that told followers which companies to single out and that documented hacking successes.

But Facebook banned one of the group’s pages, saying that using the site to organize hacking attacks like that violated its terms of use. The group went to Twitter to complain.

A Facebook spokesman issued a statement saying that the company was “sensitive to content that includes pornography, bullying, hate speech, and threats of violence” and would “take action on content that we find or that’s reported to us that promotes unlawful activity.”

In an interview Wednesday morning, Joe Sullivan, Facebook’s chief security officer, addressed WikiLeaks’s own presence on the site. He said the company had not received any official requests to disable pages or accounts associated with the WikiLeaks organization.

Facebook generally resists requests by governments or advocacy groups to take down material if that material is not illegal or does not violate Facebook’s terms of service, which prohibit attacks on individuals or incitements to violence.

“Facebook is a place where people come to talk about all sorts of things, including controversial topics,” Mr. Sullivan said. It was not clear whether anyone had asked Facebook to take down the Operation Payback page.

Twitter allowed the Operation Payback account to stay active most of Wednesday. But the group’s account was disabled late in the day, after it posted a link to a file that provided thousands of consumer credit card numbers, according to a person with direct knowledge of the situation.

A Twitter spokesman declined to discuss the details of the situation.

“We don’t comment about the specific actions we take around user accounts,” he said.

The company is not overly concerned about hackers’ attacking Twitter’s site, he said, explaining that it faces security issues all the time and has technology to deal with the situation.

Twitter is in a particularly delicate situation because its founders have celebrated their service’s role in political protest and free speech. They have not been shy about trying to capitalize on the good will engendered by playing that role.

WikiLeaks’s own Twitter account remains active, and it is the group’s main channel for reaching supporters and the media.

Last week, Amazon.com fell into a similar position when it decided to stop storing files for WikiLeaks. Advocates of WikiLeaks complained that Amazon.com was bowing to political pressure to cut the organization from its Web services. An Amazon.com spokesman said the company was simply banning an organization that had violated its terms of service by trying to distribute documents it did not own.

The last week has given rise to a hacking war in which groups have blocked access to WikiLeaks’s Web sites by bombarding them with requests.

And now the WikiLeaks supporters have responded in kind, flying the freedom of speech banner as the motivation for their actions.

Article (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/09/technology/09net.html?_r=1&src=twt&twt=nytimes)

Quote
Facebook, Twitter boot WikiLeaks supporters after Visa attack

A hacker group that calls itself "Anonymous" says it took the Visa Web site down today in retaliation for the credit card company suspending payments to the WikiLeaks site.

Earlier today the group hit the MasterCard site with a distributed denial-of-service attack for the same reason, and it took down PayPal over the weekend. The MasterCard site was back up this afternoon.

"IT'S DOWN! KEEP FIRING!!!" the group tweeted on its Operation Payback campaign page.

Visa said yesterday that it was suspending payments to the controversial whistle-blower site, joining MasterCard and PayPal.

Operation Payback also said its page had been banned from Facebook for violating terms of use, and late afternoon the group's Twitter account was suspended as well. Attempts to reach the group's Twitter page displayed a warning that said "Sorry, the profile you are trying to view has been suspended." A Twitter representative declined to comment on the matter. The group then created at least one new account on Twitter after being suspended.

Facebook bans pages that are "hateful" or "threatening" or which attack an individual or group, according to a warning Operation Payback posted to Twitter. A Facebook spokesperson provided this statement: "Specifically, we're sensitive to content that includes pornography, bullying, hate speech, and threats of violence. We also prohibit the use of Facebook for unlawful activity. The goal of these policies is to strike a very delicate balance between giving people the freedom to express their opinions and viewpoints--even those that may be controversial to some--and maintaining a safe and trusted environment."

In a minor reversal, PayPal said this afternoon that it was releasing money in the WikiLeaks account to the organization but would still restrict the account from receiving any new donations. The company published a blog post seeking to clarify that the company restricted WikiLeaks' account because its Acceptable Use Policy does not allow any group to use the service if it encourages others to engage in illegal activity.

"In 2008 and 2009, PayPal reviewed and restricted the account associated with WikiLeaks for reasons unrelated to our Acceptable Use Policy," the post said. "The account was again reviewed last week after the U.S. Department of State publicized a letter to WikiLeaks on November 27, stating that WikiLeaks may be in possession of documents that were provided in violation of U.S. law. PayPal was not contacted by any government organization in the U.S. or abroad. We restricted the account based on our Acceptable Use Policy review."

PayPal's site was also targeted today. "We can confirm that there were attempted DDoS attacks on paypal.com. The attack slowed the website itself down for a short while, but did not significantly impact payments," a PayPal spokesman told CNET.

And in what appeared to be a hactivist battle between opposing sides, several Web sites (including this one) operated by the Anonymous group were offline today, possible victims of a denial-of-service attack, according to security firm Imperva.

Anonymous was not the only group taking action in support of WikiLeaks. The group known as 4Chan had taken responsibility on Tuesday for using a denial-of-service attack to shutdown the sites for Swiss bank PostFinance and lawyers in Sweden prosecuting sex allegations against WikiLeaks front man Julian Assange.

Meanwhile, Icelandic hosting company DataCell EHF said it will take legal action against Visa and MasterCard over their refusal to process donations for WikiLeaks. DataCell said that it had been losing revenue as a result of those actions.

WikiLeaks has come under attack since it posted its latest release of about 250,000 confidential U.S. diplomatic cables to the Web last month, embarrassing officials and incurring the wrath of foreign leaders. That release followed posting of cables related to the U.S. operations in Afghanistan and Iraq earlier in the year.

As U.S. politicians cry foul and WikiLeaks' payment and infrastructure providers cut their ties to the beleaguered site, supporters have stepped up efforts to keep the site up, creating mirrors of the site, and enacting revenge on those companies that turn their backs on the project.

While that war is being waged, Assange, is behind bars for accusations not believed to be directly related to WikiLeaks. He was arrested yesterday in London on allegations of sexual assault in Sweden. Assange says he and the Web site are being unfairly punished for telling people what their governments are doing.

Asked for comment, Visa said in a statement today that its processing network that handles transactions was functioning normally but that its Web site was down. "Visa's corporate Web site--Visa.com--is currently experiencing heavier than normal traffic. The company is taking steps to restore the site to full operations within the next few hours."

The action comes as U.S. officials weigh their legal options against WikiLeaks. A State Department spokesman told CNET that Assange could be in legal jeopardy for disclosing classified information because he is "not a journalist."

Update at 5:43 p.m. PT with PayPal attacked today, new Twitter accounts appearing and Web sites operated by Anonymous offline, and at 4:48 p.m. PT with PayPal releasing WikiLeaks funds, at 4:27 p.m. PT with 4Chan attacks on Swiss bank and Swedish prosecutors, and at 3:12 p.m. PT with Anonymous' Operation Payback account on Twitter having been suspended and at 3 p.m. to include comments from Visa and Facebook.

Article (http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20025075-281.html#ixzz17ZoU5H1P)

It appears these "activists" are only worsening Assange's case.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 08, 2010, 22:32:17
These people fiercely believe that knowledge of information is more important than life.
IMO the infant known as "cyber warfare" is about to bloom.
Surf wisely :camo:
                       ___________________________________________________-

Montreal student hosts mirror WikiLeaks site
Site is one of more than 1,200 mirror sites

A Montreal computer science student and self-styled internet freedom advocate is hosting a mirror website that duplicates the material no longer available on WikiLeaks.com, as part of the global efforts to keep the whistleblower site alive.

Concordia University student Nadim Kobeissi decided to mirror the controversial website because of his staunch belief in the freedom of information.

Listen to CBC host Mike Finnerty's conversation with Nadim Kobeissi here.
"This is a fight for civil liberties," Kobeissi told CBC News on Wednesday. "What we're seeing is an attempt to censor the internet, which is completely unacceptable."

WikiLeaks has released hundreds of classified U.S. government cables and correspondence in recent weeks. The documents, which were published in co-operation with several mainstream media outlets, included behind-the-scenes conversations between diplomats who often paint unflattering portraits of foreign leaders.

Strategic energy infrastructure in several G8 countries has also been identified in the cables.

Governments around the world have vigorously condemned the release of the cables as irresponsible, dangerous and a threat to security.

Mirror sites show internet's true spirit   
The official WikiLeaks.com site was taken down after an initial batch of cables was released and is now available at the IP. address 213.251.145.96 or on any of the more than 1,200 mirror sites that have cropped up. Social media tools such as Twitter have helped redirect supporters to the mirror sites, which duplicate WikiLeaks material.

WikiLeaks supporters say the site is providing an essential public service that will ultimately hold governments accountable for their policies and decisions.

'The internet has an unprecedented potential to be a place where censorship is impossible, where freedom of speech is an imperative.' —Nadim Kobeissi, computer science student
That's why Kobeissi says he decided to host a mirror site.

"We can really prove a point by mirroring the content that's being censored, because that shows how the internet has been built," he said. "That shows that censorship is impossible on the internet and why the internet is so beautiful."

The WikiLeaks saga is a pivotal event in the world wide web's history and speaks to the internet's power, Kobeissi said.

"What we're seeing right now is the first real information war involving the internet," he said. "The internet has an unprecedented potential to be a place where censorship is impossible, where freedom of speech is an imperative."

WikiLeaks is believed to be in possession of 250,000 classified U.S. State Department cables but has only released about 1,000 of them so far after consulting with journalists from the New York Times, the Guardian, Le Monde, El Pais and Der Spiegel, who advised the site on which cables to publish and which details to remove.

Backlash against companies that cut off WikiLeaks
The organization is also dealing with the fallout from the criminal charges laid against its co-founder, Julian Assange. Assange is in a U.K. prison facing extradition to Sweden on sexual assault charges. Assange is also being investigated by American authorities on potential espionage charges.

Several companies have taken steps to cut off their co-operation with WikiLeaks — some after pressure from the U.S. government. The web hosting arm of Amazon, Amazon Web Services, last week kicked the site off its servers. Internet payment site PayPal followed suit and suspended WikiLeaks's account, as did Visa and MasterCard, making donation payments to WikiLeaks with those credit cards impossible.

Some of the sites have suffered a backlash from WikiLeaks supporters as a result of their actions. MasterCard on Wednesday reported severe technical difficulties on its own website, believed to be the work of "hacktivists" trying to protect WikiLeaks.

The whistleblower organization came to mainstream attention last spring when it started leaking classified U.S. army documents from Iraq and Afghanistan. In mid-fall, the site started dispatching diplomatic cables that have embarrassed elected leaders around the world.
link (http://www.cbc.ca/canada/montreal/story/2010/12/08/wikileaks-mirror-site-in-montreal.html#ixzz17Zofa9JC)
                    (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 09, 2010, 10:07:49
I wonder.  Has Nadim Kobeissi also posted his home address, phone number, email address, and photos of all his personal property of value?  Did he post his birth date and place of birth and info of all his immediate family on his site as well?  We do want to know whom we are dealing with, do we not?  After all, we do have the RIGHT to know.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 09, 2010, 10:21:49
 ;D  (See CBC comment at bottom.)

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

WikiLeaks payment firm to sue Visa, MasterCard


Last Updated: Thursday, December 9, 2010 | 6:05 AM ET
The Associated Press
CBC

LINK  (http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2010/12/09/wikileaks-credit-card-129.html)

The payment processor for WikiLeaks said Thursday that it was preparing to sue credit card companies Visa and MasterCard over their refusal to process donations to the secret-spilling website.

Andreas Fink, the CEO of Iceland's DataCell ehf, told The Associated Press that he would seek damages from the U.S. financial companies over their decision to block WikiLeaks funds.

"It's difficult to believe that such a large company as Visa can make a political decision," Fink said in a telephone interview from Switzerland. In an earlier statement, his company had defended the WikiLeaks, saying that "it is simply ridiculous to think WikiLeaks has done anything criminal."

WikiLeaks has been under intense pressure since it began publishing some 250,000 U.S. State Department cables, with attacks on its websites and threats against its founder, Julian Assange, who is now in a British jail fighting extradition to Sweden on sex crime allegations.

A host of U.S. internet and financial companies have severed their links to the controversial website, some citing terms of use violations.

Earlier this week, Visa and MasterCard said they would stop processing payments to WikiLeaks, although they have not offered a detailed explanation of why. Supporters have reacted with outrage — with many noting that unsavoury organizations such as the far-right British National Party both claim to accept Visa and MasterCard.

MasterCard has declined repeated requests for comment. Visa Europe Ltd. spokesman Simon Kleine said organizations could receive funds through Visa so long as they were legal and didn't breach the company's operating rules.

But he said that when issues arose "we need to ensure that they're in compliance with our operating rules and in compliance with local laws."

He declined to say what those issues were in WikiLeaks' case.

"We investigate on a commercially confidential basis," he said.

Fink said that he was officially notified of the dual suspensions through Danish financial services company Teller, which runs part of the payment infrastructure. He said a team from Teller was on its way to Iceland to conduct what he described as "due diligence."

Meanwhile, he said, credit card donations to WikiLeaks were frozen at least until next week, something which he said was costing his company money.

"Not accepting any credit card authorizations is basically killing the business," he said. He did not specify the kinds of damages he was seeking.

Fink's statement comes as internet payment company PayPal says it will return the money frozen in WikiLeaks's account to the foundation that was fundraising for it. In a blog post, PayPal Inc. defended its decision, which it denied had come as a result of lobbying from the U.S. government.

© The Canadian Press, 2010

This story is closed to commenting.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Occam on December 09, 2010, 10:29:50
This story is closed to commenting.

That's odd.  There were a whole hockeysock full of comments on that story earlier this morning...I know because I was having a good laugh at some of the idiots who think Assange and Wikileaks are some sort of messiah.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 09, 2010, 10:33:18
I was flipping through several of their articles and some are still open to comments, and others are closed to comments like this one was. 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 09, 2010, 11:48:02
Silly hackers.  Don't they realise that the internet is good for exactly two things: gaming and porn.


;D


In all honesty, the hypocracy of these tools is amazing.  "Mob Rules" seems to be the order of the day for them.  They are no better than the Black Bloc, in that they are drowning out the legitimate information out there, and flooding it full of Anti-American messages, for the sake of being, well, Anti-American.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 09, 2010, 12:05:18
Some clarification.



Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.



Details of Sweden's case against WikiLeaks' Julian Assange

Sexual assault charges in Sweden against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange are feeding conspiracy theories and claims that he's being framed. What are the known facts?



December 8, 2010
By Dan Murphy, Staff writer
The Christian Science Monitor

LINK  (http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2010/1208/Details-of-Sweden-s-case-against-WikiLeaks-Julian-Assange)

The media drama surrounding WikiLeaks (http://www.csmonitor.com/Topics/wikileaks) founder Julian Assange has taken a much darker turn.

Following WikiLeak's release of more than 250,000 US diplomatic cables to media outlets around the world, he's in a London jail cell awaiting deportation to Sweden (http://www.csmonitor.com/World/terrorism-security/2010/1207/WikiLeaks-Julian-Assange-arrested-in-London-on-rape-charges) on charges he sexually assaulted two women there in August.

His lawyer is warning that Assange has distributed the digital equivalent of a "thermonuclear device" (http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2010/1207/Will-WikiLeaks-Julian-Assange-now-arrested-take-the-nuclear-option) in case something happens to him, and his defenders insist that the charges are fabricated in an attempt to get him to Sweden – perhaps, they hint, because the country has a strong extradition treaty with the US.

But lawyer Gemma Lindfield, representing the Swedish state, told a London court yesterday that politics and Assange's activism have nothing to do with the case. In her telling, it's a simple case of credible allegations of rape being made against Assange by two women, and that he should be brought to Sweden to stand trial.

The circumstances of the case – both women told Swedish police they had at least one consensual sexual encounter with Assange – has fueled plenty of online rumor and disinformation. A mention from the Swedish police and press reports that Assange failed to use a condom in one instance, and that in another his condom broke, have led to many false claims that having unprotected sex is illegal in Sweden, and that the country has a "broken condom law."

The reality is more prosaic.

As Ms. Lindfield tells it, the two women had withdrawn their consent to have sex with Assange either during or immediately before the act. As a result, he is charged with four violations of Sweden's criminal code on sex crimes. The first woman, "Miss A," whom Assange knew from Swedish activist circles, alleges that he coerced her to have sex. He's also charged with refusing to wear a condom, despite being asked to by "Miss A."

In the case of "Miss W," as she was described in court, he's also alleged to have "sexually exploited" the fact that she was asleep to have sex with her on Aug. 17. Article 3 of Sweden's criminal code on sex crimes indicates that she could not be reasonably expected to have given consent in that state. "A person who induces another person to engage in a sexual act by gross abuse of his or her dependent state shall be sentenced for sexual exploitation to imprisonment for at most two years," Article 3 says. "The same shall apply to a person who engages in a sexual act with another person by improperly taking advantage of the fact that the latter is helpless or in some other state of incapacitation."

RELATED: WikiLeaks: Five more of the strangest stories to emerge (http://www.csmonitor.com/World/2010/1203/WikiLeaks-Five-more-of-the-strangest-stories-to-emerge/Holy-tired-metaphor)



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 09, 2010, 12:10:01
This line caught my attention:
Quote
His lawyer is warning that Assange has distributed the digital equivalent of a "thermonuclear device" in case something happens to him

Now he's making threats?  Instead of saying things like "Do to me what you will, but the people have a right to know", instead he is threatening, and using WMDs as a metaphor for what he has.

Cut the digital equivalent of his tongue out.  Yes, there are more, but how do you eat this elephant?  One hacker at a time.  Follow the money and they can be found.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 09, 2010, 12:13:35
The threat was made about a week ago.  The entire "motherlode" of all the raw info that Wikileaks has has been distributed to some 100,000 people, encrypted.  Rather than releasing it in chunks with editing through media outlets as has been the case, Assange's threat/insurance policy is that he will release the encryption key, meaning any/all of those people will be able to decrypt the contents, causing a mass release of the raw data.  Hard to argue it's brilliant.  Evil, but brilliant.

Now he's making threats?  Instead of saying things like "Do to me what you will, but the people have a right to know", instead he is threatening, and using WMDs as a metaphor for what he has.

Cut the digital equivalent of his tongue out.  Yes, there are more, but how do you eat this elephant?  One hacker at a time.  Follow the money and they can be found.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 09, 2010, 12:33:51
Evil, but brilliant.
Let's go back to "catastrophic but not serious."

In the short-term, computer security may be tightened and people will be more pissed-off at the extra steps required for banking because of hackers messing with Visa/Mastercard. Within two years though, this will be a minor footnote....except to the people who think The Matrix is a documentary and their conspiracy theory-driven fellow travellers.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 09, 2010, 12:44:38
In this case, then, make it clear that any person releasing this stuff will face legal consequences, encryption key or not.  Assange is a little man with "issues" and though it's clear he has his fans (including some on this very site), they are nothing more than rabble.  They may think that they are above the law or that what they are doing is noble, but in the end, they are trying to employ possession of information as power.  Show them that their threats are meaningless, and that means making an example out of Assange.


As an aside, if any person in this thread thinks that the accusations against him in Sweden are "trivial": think again.  "No means No", and I'm fairly certain that it applies here in Canada.  But since it's Saint Julian, well, we can forgive him, after all, the same people who did 9/11 are doing this. ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Baden Guy on December 09, 2010, 13:08:22
In this case, then, make it clear that any person releasing this stuff will face legal consequences, encryption key or not.  Assange is a little man with "issues" and though it's clear he has his fans (including some on this very site), they are nothing more than rabble.  They may think that they are above the law or that what they are doing is noble, but in the end, they are trying to employ possession of information as power.  Show them that their threats are meaningless, and that means making an example out of Assange.


As an aside, if any person in this thread thinks that the accusations against him in Sweden are "trivial": think again.  "No means No", and I'm fairly certain that it applies here in Canada.  But since it's Saint Julian, well, we can forgive him, after all, the same people who did 9/11 are doing this. ::)


Innocent until found guilty in a court of law.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ekpiper on December 09, 2010, 13:22:20
I have followed this thread of events with only half-arsed enthusiasm.

Given that the majority of us on this site actually have real responsibilities or at least a basic responsibility to national security, most of us completely understand the need for secrecy.  There are things that need to happen behind closed doors for the purposes of safety and security.  While it may indeed be interesting to hear all of these messages, and to get some pretty good insight into a lot of US foreign relations, those who are spouting off about freedom of information, and a right to know are clearly trying to be self-righteous and have deluded themselves with thinking that everything should be known by everyone, merely because it is about the United States.  If there was no secrecy, you can guarantee that MANY more attacks would happen.

"And in news today, the FBI is tracking Muhammad Hussain, expected to be trying to gather materials for a bomb.  The FBI says that they are imitating an arms trader named Fazid el-Shief, hoping to give him a fake weapon to expose himself."

I am of the firm belief that a huge number of people no longer know what is best for themselves.  The bottom line is that the world is not a perfect place.  In a perfect world, we wouldn't need secrets, we wouldn't need a military, and we could all be intimately involved in the dealings of our governments.  The world is not perfect.  There truly are people out to harm us, and as a result, we must take precautions.  Not every Canadian can be trusted, and neither can every American.  I expect some people will never understand this, and some will claim it is for the greater good.  But only if ALL other nations are just as free about the information as they are claiming we should be would it be feasible to do so.  Until then, things are as they are, and they must stay that way.

I can understand calls for Mr. Assange's "untimely death" IF he were the one who released the information, or he were the only one involved in WikiLeaks.  The bottom line is that with all the publicity now given to them, if you take him down, surely others will take his place.  He is a fool, and is cloaking his hatred in self-righteousness, and he should be imprisoned if it were possible.

Bottom line: We may not like secrets, but they're necessary.  Freedom of speech concerns stating your own opinion, not releasing important classified documents.  The world isn't perfect.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Bruce Monkhouse on December 09, 2010, 13:23:59

Innocent until found guilty in a court of law.

Which is why he is a pathetic little man,.....he won't go face that court.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 09, 2010, 13:26:55
Dutch teen arrested, confesses to attacks on Visa, MasterCard sites - Google translation (http://is.gd/irWmd) of NLD's National Prosecution Service news release in Dutch (http://www.om.nl/actueel/nieuws-_en/@154591/16-jarige_jongen/):
Quote
Commissioned by the National Prosecutor, the High Tech Crime Team of the National Investigation in The Hague last night a 16-year-old boy arrested, presumably involved in the digital attacks by sympathizers WikiLleaks to include the websites of Mastercard and Paypal.

Wikileaks sympathizers after the arrest of Juilian Assange in England, proceeded to computer attacks on the websites of the Swedish public prosecutors, the Swiss postal banking, credit card companies Visa and MasterCard payment site Paypal.  Immediately after it became clear that these cyber attacks from the Netherlands were given the Team of the National High Tech Crime Investigation initiated an investigation.

Here are probably thousands of Web enabled computers to shut down. Wikileaks supporters of their computers could volunteer to be part of these attacks.

The cyber attacks quickly led yesterday to identify the suspect. When the boy was seized computers and digital data carriers. The boy is now in police custody and interrogated by detectives from the High Tech Crime Team. He has a confession about attacks on MasterCard and Visa. The boy is probably part of a larger group of hackers, to which the investigation continues. He was arraigned Friday on the judge in Rotterdam.

The actions of the Wikileaks sympathizers are conducted under the name Operation Payback.  Wikileaks recently published confidential documents from the U.S. government.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 09, 2010, 13:31:37

Innocent until found guilty in a court of law.
That only works so far.  Common sense has to prevail.  Shut them down (which isn't a judicial punishment), but irrespective of presumption of innocence (which is a nice catch phrase, by the way, but why then do we keep people in jail if we presume then innocent?  Anyway, I digress...), find them to bring them forward and try them.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 09, 2010, 13:35:55
Dutch teen arrested, confesses to attacks on Visa, MasterCard sites
One down, thousands to go, but the first bite of the elephant has been taken.   Make an example of him, and show those others out there that there are real consequences for such actions.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 09, 2010, 13:44:45
ekpiper

Well said.  Unfortunately, once again, this is "preaching to the choir".  On a whole Canadians are very naive of Security matters.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ModlrMike on December 09, 2010, 13:45:08
Dutch teen arrested, confesses to attacks on Visa, MasterCard sites

Which proves that DDOS attacks are not the internet WMD of the past. That, and there's really no true anonymity on the web. Whatever you do leaves tracks. Tracks that someone else can follow to find you.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 09, 2010, 13:48:00
One down, thousands to go, but the first bite of the elephant has been taken.   Make an example of him, and show those others out there that there are real consequences for such actions.

With the dependency on technology by the youth of today, a suitable punishment would be doing time without access to technology.  Could you imagine this kid being sentenced to ten years, without access to any form of technology?  He would go stir-crazy within a few minutes of confinement.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Brad Sallows on December 09, 2010, 14:03:38
I don't know about the legality of being anywhere along the path of making a state's guarded information accessible to its enemies, but as a point of morality the people involved with Wikileaks are in the wrong.  Not everyone is entitled to all information.  Some people, organizations, and states will use information to do harm.  If the producers and guardians of that information deemed it worth protecting, the aforementioned parties have no right to it.

I am surprised Assange and the other key members are still alive, now that many of the powerful nations of the world have some sort of motive.  Anyone else could blame the US; the US could reasonably argue that it did nothing after the first set of leaks or knowing the second was imminent, and claim anyone else did it.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 09, 2010, 14:12:15
Two points:

In this case, then, make it clear that any person releasing this stuff will face legal consequences, encryption key or not.

I fail to see how this could be possible.  Someone possessing or transmitting the encrypted file without the key is passing along a bunch of gibberish.  If Assange doesn't release the key, then there'd be no way for any court anywhere to have it proven to them beyond reasonable doubt that the contents of the encryption are what they are claimed to be.

[quote author=Technoviking link=topic=97745.msg998456#msg998456 date=1291913078
As an aside, if any person in this thread thinks that the accusations against him in Sweden are "trivial": think again.  "No means No", and I'm fairly certain that it applies here in Canada.  But since it's Saint Julian, well, we can forgive him, after all, the same people who did 9/11 are doing this. ::)
[/quote]

The Swedish story is just bizarre, it seems rather odd that neither of the aggrieved parties bothered to talk to police for quite a while, doesn't it?  I also find it bizarre (and frankly, a little disturbing) that never mind the presumption of innocence, someone can be arrested and held for extradition when they haven't even been charged with an offence.  It's not simply a matter of innocent until proven guilty, but no charge has even been laid.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyRick on December 09, 2010, 15:27:08
For all these clowns who are supporting Julian Assange, how many are older than 23, not living in Mom's basement, have a job and god forbid a freaking life.
 My points

1. People are not entitled to know everything going on. Some things are none of their business. Some things are state secrets and some things are opinions and not neccessarrly accurate information.

2. The claim to being transparency for any info being denied for release reminds me of how they conducted the witch hunts 300 years ago. If you hid anything at all, you could easily be accused of witchcraft and burned for it.

3. Even these documents being illegally released, who vouches for the accuracy?

Personally, I hope Julian Assange gets imprisoned for life in some third world hell hole. I still love his double standard. Is there a web site where we can harrass him and release every detail of his life? True or not, won't matter, we will claim we are just being transparent.

Just a thought.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 09, 2010, 18:18:41
I wonder.  Has Nadim Kobeissi also posted his home address, phone number, email address, and photos of all his personal property of value?  Did he post his birth date and place of birth and info of all his immediate family on his site as well?  We do want to know whom we are dealing with, do we not?  After all, we do have the RIGHT to know.
Well......lets see. He was born Sept 1990 in Beirut Lebanon.
Now....I wonder just how much wacky leaking there is about Lebanon and when exactly were they leaked.
Pretty easy to find out eh! (wikileaks lebanon in the search engine)

Quote from article reply #151:

"The internet has an unprecedented potential to be a place where censorship is impossible, where freedom of speech is an imperative.' —Nadim Kobeissi, computer science student
That's why Kobeissi says he decided to host a mirror site."

I think not

Just the fact that he finds it necessary to add that particular statement when there are already 1200+ mirror
sites out there only proves IMO the posbility of some sort of twisted hidden agenda.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: old medic on December 10, 2010, 02:17:50
Swedish Government Websites forced offline.
Other sites hijacked and rerouted.
http://www.thelocal.se/30718/20101209/

Quote
The name of Sweden's justice minister Beatrice Ask has been hijacked on the internet, with a website featuring her name in the address now linking to WikiLeaks.

Web users who visit the site "beatricask.se" will instead find themselves visiting the whistleblower website WikiLeaks.

The minister's spokesperson, Martin Valfridsson, told AFP that Ask had not previously used that domain name.

Hackers also forced the Swedish government's website offline for several hours on Thursday as cyber attacks in support of WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange gathered pace.

The Aftonbladet daily said the government's official website, www.regeringen.se, was offline for a few hours overnight to Thursday, publishing a screen shot which showed the server could not be reached.

The site was working normally again later in the day.

It remains unclear who is behind the Beatrice Ask website and the attack on the government website, both of which come online the day after hackers attacked websites for the Swedish Prosecution Authority (Åklagarmyndigheten) and the law offices of Claes Borgström, the attorney representing the two women who allege they were sexually molested by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange back in August.

A group of internet activists operating under the name "Operation Payback" has claimed credit for the attacks on the Borgström and the Prosecution Authority.

The two attacks were part of a wider effort, "Operation Avenge Assange," directed at organisations deemed by the group to be opposed to WikiLeaks.

Credit card companies Visa and MasterCard as well as online payment service PayPal were also targeted by the group for the companies' decisions to stop processing payments to WikiLeaks.

"It's the wild west out on the internet right now," IT expert Joakim von Braun told the newspaper.

Government spokeswoman Mari Ternbo told AFP the government did not comment security matters and could not confirm the cyber attack had taken place.

Assange, a 39-year-old Australian, is being detained in London pending a hearing on extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning over rape allegations.


Quote
The website of the Swedish prosecutor's office pursuing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange came under cyber attack on Tuesday in the latest salvo in a campaign by online supporters who have also struck PayPal and the Swiss Post Office bank.

"Our website was overloaded on Tuesday night and our hosting company then decided to shut it down. We don't know the cause of the overload, but are now looking into it," Karin Rosander, a spokesperson for the Swedish Prosecution Authority (Åklagarmyndigheten) told the TT news agency.

She added that she had not yet received confirmation that the site outage was caused by a hacker attack.

PandaLabs, the malware detection laboratory for computer security firm Panda Security, said the prosecutor's website, aklagare.se, was brought down by members of the loose "cyber hacktivist" group called "Anonymous."
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 10, 2010, 06:57:26
http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/dec/09/julian-assange-nobel-peace-prize

Quote
Julian Assange should be awarded Nobel peace prize, suggests Russia

Russia urges Assange nomination in calculated dig at the US over WikiLeaks founder's detention

Russia has suggested that Julian Assange should be awarded the Nobel peace prize, in an unexpected show of support from Moscow for the jailed WikiLeaks founder.

In what appears to be a calculated dig at the US, the Kremlin urged non-governmental organisations to think seriously about "nominating Assange as a Nobel Prize laureate".

"Public and non-governmental organisations should think of how to help him," the source from inside president Dmitry Medvedev's office told Russian news agencies. Speaking in Brussels, where Medvedev was attending a Russia-EU summit yesterday , the source went on: "Maybe, nominate him as a Nobel Prize laureate."

Russia's reflexively suspicious leadership appears to have come round to WikiLeaks, having decided that the ongoing torrent of disclosures are ultimately far more damaging and disastrous to America's long-term geopolitical interests than they are to Russia's.

The Kremlin's initial reaction to stories dubbing Russia a corrupt "mafia state" and kleptocracy was, predictably, negative. Last week Medvedev's spokesman dubbed the revelations "not worthy of comment" while Putin raged that a US diplomatic cable comparing him to Batman and Medvedev to Robin was "arrogant" and "unethical". State TV ignored the claims.

Subsequent disclosures, however, that Nato had secretly prepared a plan in case Russia invaded its Baltic neighbours have left the Kremlin smarting. Today Russia's foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said Nato had to explain why it privately considered Russia an enemy while publicly describing it warmly as a "strategic partner" and ally.

Nato should make clear its position on WikiLeaks cables published by the Guardian alleging that the alliance had devised plans to defend Poland, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia against Russia, Lavrov said.

"With one hand, Nato seeks agreement with us on joint partnership, and with the other, it makes a decision that it needs to defend. So when is Nato more sincere?" Lavrov asked today. "We have asked these questions and are expecting answers to them. We think we are entitled to that."

Lavrov said his attitude towards the leaked US state department cables was "philosophical". "It is interesting to read, including what ambassadors write to provide a stream of information to their capitals," he admitted.

Dmitry Rogozin, Russia's hardline ultra-nationalist ambassador to Nato, also today voiced his support for the embattled Assange. He tweeted that Assange's arrest and incarceration on Monday at the City of Westminster magistrates' court demonstrated that there was "no media freedom" in the west. Assange's "fate" amounted to "political persecution" and a lack of human rights, the ambassador said.

In London, meanwhile, Russia's chargé d'affaires and acting ambassador in the UK, Alexander Sternik, said relations with Britain had improved since the coalition came to power. He complained, however, about the hostile reaction in the British media after Fifa's executive committee voted that Russia – and not England – should host the 2018 World Cup.

In a briefing to journalists this morning, Sternik said: "While the English bid was technically a strong one, the Russian bid was in line with the well-known Fifa philosophy of opening new frontiers for world football. The vote result was therefore quite logical, and while the disappointment of many in England is understandable, the media outrage was a step too far. It's not cricket, as the English say."

In accordance with Fair Dealing provisions of Canadian Copyright

I know this is a serious topic, but this article made me laugh out loud.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 10, 2010, 09:16:02
As if the Russian Federation had no idea of what the Starship Enterprise does in the neutral zone. ;D

Quote from Putin Defends Russia Against WikiLeaks Corruption Allegations (article) (http://www.voanews.com/english/news/Putin-Defends-Russia-Against-WikiLeaks-Corruption-Allegations-111207374.html)

"These revelations that are already being published out of these cables are showing that government leaders are saying one thing publicly and another privately."

What have they been paying their spies to find out ?
also from the same article;
quote:
"Russia's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Alexei Sazonov said Thursday that there is nothing new or unexpected for Russia in the cables. He said Russia is committed to its relationship with the U.S."

         (quotes are reproduced in accordance with the fair dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GK .Dundas on December 10, 2010, 10:25:46
http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/dec/09/julian-assange-nobel-peace-prize

In accordance with Fair Dealing provisions of Canadian Copyright

I know this is a serious topic, but this article made me laugh out loud.
I wonder how'd they 'd feel if he'd gone after them as well as the US ? Not he's ever likely to after anyone but the US.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 10, 2010, 10:41:01
I wonder how'd they 'd feel if he'd gone after them as well as the US ? Not he's ever likely to after anyone but the US.
Oh, one never knows (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/02/julian-assange-wikileaks-china-russia)....
Quote
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange wanted to expose China's and Russia's secrets as much as those of the US, and believes Hillary Clinton should resign if she ordered diplomats to engage in espionage.

"[Clinton] should resign if it could be shown that she was responsible for ordering US diplomatic figures to engage in espionage of UN activities, in violation of the international covenants to which the US signed up," he said in an interview with Time magazine, published yesterday following the leak of secret US diplomatic cables that have caused huge embarrassment for the country.

Assange gave the interview via Skype from an undisclosed location after a warrant was issued by Interpol following rape allegations in Sweden, which his lawyer said amounted to persecution and a smear campaign.

While Assange has been accused by former members of the WikiLeaks project of obsessively focusing on the US, he said countries with less transparency, such as China and Russia, had the most potential to be reformed by whistleblowers.

"We believe it is the most closed societies that have the most reform potential," he said. Assange said that while parts of the Chinese government and security services "appear terrified of free speech" he believed it was "an optimistic sign because it means speech can still cause reform."

He added: "Journalism and writing is capable of achieving change which is why Chinese authorities are so scared of it."

Assange argued that countries like China could be easier to reform than countries like the US and the UK, which "have been so heavily fiscalised through contractual obligations that political change doesn't seem to result in economic change, which in other words means that political change doesn't result in change."

While secrecy was important, Assange said, in keeping the identity of sources hidden, secrecy "shouldn't be used to cover up abuses." ....
Based on Russia's track record of dealing with opposition and whistleblowing, methinks even the ***(ange)-meister isn't dumb enough to really consider this.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 10, 2010, 10:57:12
Pak paranoia and a WikiHoax--The country is pervaded with conspiracy theories; no wonder some fell for this. From Foreign Policy’s “AfPak Daily brief“ (lots of links at original):
http://afpak.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2010/12/10/daily_brief_pakistani_media_in_wikileaks_hoax

Quote
Crude propaganda hoax

Yesterday morning, major Pakistani newspapers carried stories allegedly based on U.S. diplomatic cables released by the web site Wikileaks in which U.S. officials purportedly described Indian spies supporting Islamist militants in Baluchistan and Waziristan, called former Indian army chief General Deepak Kapoor “an incompetent combat leader and rather a geek,” said a “Bosnia-like genocide” is occurring in Indian-administered Kashmir, and asserted that the Indian military is supporting Hindu fundamentalist groups, among other claims (Guardian). The cables, however, could not be found in the Wikileaks database, suggesting Wikileaks was exploited for propaganda purposes.

Pakistan’s Express Tribune and The News have issued mea culpas admitting that the “story was dubious and may have been planted,” acknowledging that the reports came from the Islamabad-based Online wire service, which is “known for their close connections with certain intelligence agencies” (AP, AFP, BBC, ET, The News). However, the Urdu-language Jang, which carried the story on its front page yesterday, has not mentioned the incident, and the right-wing daily The Nation, which “still appeared to believe the story,” editorialized that the cables revealed “India’s true face” and “Washington’s hypocrisy” (BBC, Nation)…

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 10, 2010, 11:29:41
Mark
       That proves one very important point that must be asked by all parties concerned with regards to information leaks.
What percentage is actually planted information ?
What is true and what is not true ?
Knowing the fact that there is misinformation it destroys the overall credibility
of all the other so called leaked information.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 10, 2010, 11:54:46
Knowing the fact that there is misinformation it destroys the overall credibility  of all the other so called leaked information.
...or reaffirms conspiracy theorists' delusions.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: old medic on December 10, 2010, 12:20:07
Pro-WikiLeaks hackers arming selves for holiday blitz
Raphael G. Satter
London— Reuters
copy at: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/technology/pro-wikileaks-hackers-arming-selves-for-holiday-blitz/article1832726/

Quote
Wikileaks supporters on Friday downloaded increasing amounts of the denial-of-service software used to attack companies seen as hostile – a development that could challenge even Internet giants such as PayPal and Amazon.com during the crucial Christmas shopping season.

U.S. data security company Imperva says downloads of the attack program used to bombard websites with bogus requests for data have jumped to over 40,000, with thousands of new downloads reported overnight.

“It's definitely increasing,” Imperva Web researcher Tal Be'ery said in a telephone interview from Israel.

The freely available software, dubbed “Low Orbit Ion Cannon,” is a critical part of the campaign by “hacktivists” seeking to take revenge on sites they believe have betrayed WikiLeaks, which has outraged American officials by publishing hundreds of thousands of classified U.S. diplomatic cables and military intelligence reports.

Users who download the software essentially volunteer their computers to be used as weapons that volley streams of electronic spam at targeted websites. The more computers, the greater the flow of data requests, and the better chances are of overwhelming the targeted website.

The cyberguerillas, who gather under the name Anonymous, have had mixed results so far. Attacks directed at the main pages of Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc. succeeded in making them inaccessible, in MasterCard's case for several hours. Attacks on online payment company PayPal Inc. have periodically rendered a small part of its website inoperative.

But other planned attacks, on London-based Moneybookers.com or Amazon.com, have either fizzled or been called off.

All five sites have severed their links to WikiLeaks over the past weeks and months, many citing suspected “terms of use” violations. The moves angered WikiLeaks supporters and alarmed free speech advocates, many of whom claim that the companies are caving in to U.S. pressure to muzzle the controversial website.

WikiLeaks has been careful to distance itself from Anonymous, saying “we neither condemn nor applaud these attacks.”

A press release circulated under the Anonymous name Friday said the group – which it refers to as an “Internet gathering” – was acting out of a desire “to raise awareness about WikiLeaks and the underhanded methods employed by the above companies to impair WikiLeaks' ability to function.”

Imperva said Friday that it had monitored Anonymous supporters boasting about bringing in huge numbers of extra computers to back the attacks – something it said might challenge Amazon.com at one of the retailer's busiest times of the year.

But Be'ery stressed the boasts were unconfirmed, and the Anonymous statement said its members did not want to alienate the public by causing online havoc over the holidays.

“Simply put, attacking a major online retailer when people are buying presents for their loved ones would be in bad taste,” the press release said.

Dutch police said Friday they were investigating whether hackers were responsible for taking down the websites of police and prosecutors in the Netherlands after the arrest of a 16-year-old suspected cybercriminal.

Dutch media reported that Anonymous tried to take down the two police sites in an apparent revenge attack. Both sites were only sporadically reachable Friday morning.

In Australia, WikiLeaks supporters held rallies in Brisbane and Sydney on Friday. In Sydney, more than 500 people gathered outside Town Hall, some waving signs that read, “Hands off WikiLeaks, We deserve the truth,” and “Don't shoot the messenger.”

One man sealed his mouth shut with tape on which the words “NO LEAKS” had been written.

The U.S. Department of Justice, meanwhile is considering whether to charge those behind the leaks under the espionage act or other laws, while U.S. diplomats, deeply embarrassed by WikiLeaks' disclosures, have struggled to contain the fallout.

“The deplorable Wikileaks disclosures put innocent lives at risk, and damage U.S. national security interests,” U.S. Ambassador to London Louis Susman wrote in an editorial Friday in The Guardian newspaper.

“There is nothing brave about sabotaging the peaceful relations between nations on which our common security depends,” he added.

The U.S. may soon be facing more than WikiLeaks as an opponent.

A former WikiLeaks spokesman plans to launch a rival website Monday called Openleaks that will help anonymous sources deliver sensitive material to public attention. Daniel Domscheit-Berg made the claim in a documentary by Swedish broadcaster SVT airing Sunday but obtained in advance by the AP.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange remained in jail ahead of a Dec. 14 hearing where he plans to fight extradition to Sweden to face sex crimes allegations.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 10, 2010, 12:27:42
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Blocking WikiLeaks


Can Free Speech Be Protected on a Private Internet?



12/10/2010
A commentary by Konrad Lischka
SPIEGEL ONLINE

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,733942,00.html)

Does the US constitution protect WikiLeaks? Only courts can decide how far the whistleblowing platform can go. Yet Amazon and others have simply blocked the site, rather than waiting for legal clarification. The companies' cowardice is now threatening Internet freedom.

The disappointment was huge -- the fury even greater.

Why have companies like Amazon and PayPal decided that they didn't want WikiLeaks as a customer? Angry citizens have called for boycotts on online forums, Facebook and Twitter. Many accuse the companies of censorship.

This term is misleading. There is no state censorship at play here. For that a court would have to decide in a concrete case against the freedom of the press. And that has not occurred here -- mainly because the Internet companies did not even take their chances with the legal route.

Despite all the political pressure that is being applied to WikiLeaks, in the US it is not against the law to process donations for the platform or to distribute its documents. Yet Amazon and PayPal have decided not to do so any more.

WikiLeaks can continue to communicate via Twitter or Facebook, and many people can access the platform's contents on their Internet providers. These other companies have not decided to block WikiLeaks.

'Pick Your Fights'

The different reactions from Internet firms to the WikiLeaks publications reveal a dilemma. Many citizens regard the Internet as a public space, but in fact it is a private sphere. And the companies that control almost all the forums on the Web can, if in doubt, exercise their rights of ownership and ban who they like.

The extent to which citizens are free on the Internet depends on whether these companies want to get into conflict with the state or other firms, for example copyright holders.

They have to work out, on their behalf, how far the right to free speech goes, and when it infringes upon other rights, for example personal or author rights.

There is a saying "pick your battles." Well, Internet giants Amazon and PayPal have clearly decided not to join the fight for WikiLeaks. They are avoiding conflict and have thrown out the activists by pointing to their terms and conditions. They have the right to do so. Companies should be allowed to be cowards, if the risk seems too high for them.

That risk could be a general threat from the US political establishment -- or the fury of US customers, who regard WikiLeaks as a platform for state treason. Such rage could hit the company a lot harder than the revolt by those activists now calling for a boycott of Amazon and PayPal.

Up to the Courts to Rule on WikiLeaks

Yet these calls for a boycott should be welcomed. They could show the companies that the situation is actually the exact opposite to what they had assumed: that perhaps they have been wrong in their appraisal of the reaction to WikiLeaks and have actually annoyed more customers than expected with the block. Then perhaps the next time they will do things differently.

What is really of concern is how quickly the companies made these decisions. Their way of dealing with controversies can only harm the Internet, regardless of what one's stance is on WikiLeaks. These positions are so contrary -- treason vs. serving the public good -- and the contentious issue is so fundamental -- what can citizens publish? -- that it should be a question for the courts.

At the moment it is doubtful that it will get that far -- not just because the Internet giants are too cowardly to put the US government's desire for a lawsuit against WikiLeaks to the test.

Avoiding Conflict

But WikiLeaks activists themselves are also avoiding a legal confrontation. Instead of suing Amazon they are simply putting the data on a different server. The move demonstrates pragmatism. But in the long term it would be of more use to the Internet in the US were the issue brought before the courts -- to clarify if Amazon can simply delete a customer's content.

In Germany a similar question is also pending. The non-profit Wau Holland Foundation, which handles and transfers donations to WikiLeaks in Germany, is looking at taking legal action against PayPal. The eBay subsidiary had blocked the foundation's account -- and a bank is not allowed to simply close the account of a party or organization. There are relavent precedents in Germany.

The question in the US is whether the constitution gives protection to the controversial WikiLeaks publications. It is to be hoped that a court will clarify this issue with relation to the WikiLeaks dispute, instead of the current situation where companies are making these decisions based on their expectations of public opinion and the potential for conflict with politicians.

It is only with companies that are more generous in their interpretation of fundamental rights that the Internet can continue to function as a public space.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 10, 2010, 13:26:42
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.



Assange Lawyers Prepare for U.S. Spying Indictment

Attorney Says American Indictment Related to Espionage Act Imminent for Wikileaks Founder



By JIM SCIUTTO and LEE FERRAN
LONDON, Dec. 10, 2010

LINK  (http://abcnews.go.com/US/assange-lawyers-prepare-us-espionage-indictment/story?id=12362315)

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange (http://abcnews.go.com/US/operation-payback-anonymous-cyber-battle-erupts-wikileaks/story?id=12351428), the man behind the publication of more than a 250,000 classified U.S. diplomatic cables, could soon be facing spying charges in the U.S. related to the Espionage Act (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sup_01_18_10_I_20_37.html), Assange's lawyer said today.

"Our position of course is that we don't believe it applies to Mr. Assange and that in any event he's entitled to First Amendment protection as publisher of Wikileaks and any prosecution under the Espionage Act would in my view be unconstitutional and puts at risk all media organizations in the U.S.," Assange's attorney Jennifer Robinson told ABC News.

Robinson said a U.S. indictment of Assange was imminent.

Assange is already in custody in London on sexual assault charges including rape originating out of Sweden. He is being held in solitary confinement with restricted access to a phone and his lawyers, Robinson said.

"This means he is under significant surveillance but also means he has more restrictive conditions than other prisoners," she said. "Considering the circumstances he was incredibly positive and upbeat."

Justice Department officials declined to comment on the possible coming charges, but earlier this week, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said the release of the documents had put the United States at risk and said he authorized a criminal investigation into Assange.

"The lives of people who work for the American people has been put at risk; the American people themselves have been put at risk by these actions that are, I believe, arrogant, misguided and ultimately not helpful in any way. We are doing everything that we can," Holder said Tuesday. "We have a very serious, active, ongoing investigation that is criminal in nature. I authorized just last week a number of things to be done so that we can hopefully get to the bottom of this and hold people accountable, as they -- as they should be."

In response to widespread criticism of the sex crime charges, a lawyer for the two Swedish women accusing Assange (http://abcnews.go.com/US/wikileaks-julian-assange-arrested-britain-sex-crimes/story?id=12330526) said the charges are in no way politically motivated and the woman are angry at that suggestion.

"They were attacked by Mr. Assange and then they are treated like perpetrators themselves," attorney Claes Borgstrom told ABC News. "He has molested them and then sacrificed them for his own interests."

One woman accused Assange of sexually coercing her twice in August, including one time when he allegedly "forcibly parted her legs, preventing her from moving... then had intercourse without a condom," according to prosecutors (http://abcnews.go.com/US/wikileaks-julian-assange-arrested-britain-sex-crimes/story?id=12330526). The second woman claimed that Assange had unprotected sex with her while she slept.

Borgstrom told ABC News one of the women went to the hospital following one of the alleged attacks.

The timing of the arrest earlier this week led a Wikileaks spokesperson, Assange's lawyer Mark Stephens and hundreds of Assange's supporters to claim they were part of a political effort (http://abcnews.go.com/US/operation-payback-anonymous-cyber-battle-erupts-wikileaks/story?id=12351428) to marginalize the Wikileaks founder in the face of the massive document drop.

But Borgstrom said his clients were hardly against Wikileaks. Rather, the two were employed by Wikileaks and were in fact "admirers" of Assange's work.

"They want that there will be a trial so Julian Assange must answer to what he has done and so the world sees it's true and it really happened," Borgstrom said.

The accusations against Assange were previously dropped by one Swedish prosecutor before being picked up by another. When the accusations were read in a British court Tuesday, the judge said the case is "about serious sexual offenses on three separate occasions, involving two separate victims...extremely serious allegations."

Assange has denied the sex crimes charges and after his arrest, Stephens told ABC News Assange is ready "to vindicate himself and clear his good name."

Cyber Battle Explodes Over Wikileaks

 appears to have sparked a [url=http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wikileaks-anonymous-cyber-attacks/story?id=12355960]cyber skirmish (http://abcnews.go.com/US/wikileaks-julian-assange-arrested-britain-sex-crimes/story?id=12330526Assange's detention[/url) as his supporters targeted government and private websites that have taken action against Wikileaks, before some the supporters' own pages were taken down in return.

After a loosely affiliated group of computer users known as Anonymous declared Operation: Payback against several major websites like Paypal, Mastercard.com and Visa.com -- all companies who refused to process payments for Wikileaks -- and the Swedish government website, some of those sites went down for hours Wednesday. Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin told ABC News (http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch/2010/12/exclusive-palin-under-cyber-attack-from-wikileaks-supporters-in-operation-payback.html) she was among the victims of the attacks late Wednesday after she spoke out on Facebook against Assange.

"No wonder others are keeping silent about Assange's antics," Palin said in an e-mail to ABC News. "This is what happens when you exercise the First Amendment and speak against his sick, un-American espionage efforts."

For hours Mastercard.com was not operational once again, although service appears to have been restored.

"This is a way kind of to strike back and to say 'Hey, you can't push us around,'" Wired Magazine's Noah Schactman told "Good Morning America." "These retaliatory attacks really show that in today's, you know, super-networked world, that a very few number of people can have an outsize effect."

But then the so-called "hackivists" took their own cyber shots as several websites they were apparently using to organize the attacks, including Facebook and Twitter, were also taken down. The FBI is investigating the so-called Operation: Payback attacks, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said in a press conference today.

A cached page for Anonops.net, a page that is currently down but had shown Anonymous' alleged plans, quotes the co-founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which describes itself as the "first line of defense" against attacks on online freedom.

"The first serious infowar is now engaged. The field of battle is WikiLeaks. You are the troops," EFF co-founder John Perry Barlow said in a tweet last week.

Wikileaks spokesperson Kristinn Hrafnsson told ABC News in an exclusive interview the refusal of service by Mastercard, Visa and Paypal amounted to an "outrageous" attack on freedom of speech.

"We are seeing growing support for us, especially in the last few days when we've had these outrageous attacks on us by companies that are bowing to political pressure from political forces in the United States," Hrafnsson said Wednesday. "We are getting seriously close to censorship in the United States and that must surely go against the fundamental values that the country is based upon."

Cables Target U.S. National Security Interests

One of the most recent cables leaked to anger U.S. authorities includes a list of installations vital to America's national security and interests.

U.S. government officials say that the diplomatic leaks have already had an effect on relationships with individuals and governments around the world.

"We have gotten indications that there is at least some change in how individuals and governments cooperate with us, and share information," said Pentagon spokesman Col. Dave Lapan, without providing any details. There's a vague "sense that there has been some pulling back because of these revelations."

Speaking a press conference Monday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the leak could "create potential dangers for our friends and partners."

In a February 2009 cable, American envoys were asked to identify sensitive places "whose loss could critically impact the public health, economic security, and/or national and homeland security of the United States."

Clinton said she would not comment on "any specific cable," but said the theft of the cables was "deeply distressing."

Clinton then called on "countries around the world and businesses to assist us in preventing any of the consequences that could either endanger individuals or other interests internationally."




]LINK to News Video  (http://abcnews.go.com/US/assange-lawyers-prepare-us-espionage-indictment/story?id=12362315)

Related

Downloads of Cyberattack Software Spike Overnight  (http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wikileaks-anonymous-cyber-attacks/story?id=12355960)
Assange Accusers 'Treated Like Perpetrators' (http://abcnews.go.com/US/operation-payback-anonymous-cyber-battle-erupts-wikileaks/story?id=12351428)
Clinton Faces Leaders Dissed in Secret Cables (http://abcnews.go.com/US/hillary-clinton-explaining-world-leaders-dissed-secret-cables/story?id=12285930)
McCain Wants Heads to Roll in Wikileaks Scandal (http://abcnews.go.com/US/top-brass-held-responsible-bradley-mannings-wikileaks-breach/story?id=12276038)


Video

Watch: WikiLeak Crackdown Prompts Cyber Attacks (http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/credit-card-companies-sarah-palin-attack-wikileaks-12351740)
Watch: Wikileaks' Assange Arrested, Held Without Bail (http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/video/wikileaks-jullian-assange-arrested-held-bail-12338190)
Watch: Julian Assange Arrested in London (http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/wikileaks-founder-julian-assange-arrested-london-12330778)
Watch: Wikileaks Fallout: Clinton Repairs Relations (http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/video/wikileaks-fallout-hillary-clinton-repairs-relations-12283268)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 10, 2010, 13:42:54
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange (http://abcnews.go.com/US/operation-payback-anonymous-cyber-battle-erupts-wikileaks/story?id=12351428), the man behind the publication of more than a 250,000 classified U.S. diplomatic cables, could soon be facing spying charges in the U.S. related to the Espionage Act (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sup_01_18_10_I_20_37.html), Assange's lawyer said today.

Looking at the links to the Espionage Act (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sup_01_18_10_I_20_37.html), one will see that under US Code, TITLE 18—CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE, PART I—CRIMES, CHAPTER 37—ESPIONAGE AND CENSORSHIP, Sections:  793 (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00000793----000-.html). Gathering, transmitting or losing defense information; 794 (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00000794----000-.html). Gathering or delivering defense information to aid foreign government; and  798 (http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/usc_sec_18_00000798----000-.html). Disclosure of classified information, would easily apply to this case.   

 



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 10, 2010, 13:45:32
I realize Sweden has first dibs on the twit, but will Sweden extradite him to the US?
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 10, 2010, 14:26:00
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.



Assange moved to isolation in jail as WikiLeaks continue




By Guy Jackson,
Agence France-Presse
December 10, 2010 9:12 AM

LINK  (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/business/Assange+moved+isolation+jail+WikiLeaks+continue/3957160/story.html)

LONDON - Police moved WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange to the segregation unit of a London jail for his safety, his lawyer said Friday as new cables showed the U.S. suspects Myanmar has a secret nuclear program.

The 39-year-old Australian has been moved from the main part of Wandsworth prison to an isolation unit, said Jennifer Robinson, one of Assange's legal team.

"The prison authorities are doing it for his own safety, presumably," she told AFP.

Assange is due to appear in a London court for a second time on Tuesday after being arrested on a warrant issued by Sweden, where prosecutors want to question him about allegations of rape and sexual molestation made by two women.

WikiLeaks insists the allegations are politically motivated because the whistleblowing website has enraged Washington and governments around the world by releasing thousands of U.S. diplomatic cables.

Robinson complained that Assange "does not get any recreation" in the prison and "has difficulties getting phone calls out . . . he is on his own."

Assange, a former computer hacker, is not allowed to have a laptop computer in his cell, but his lawyers have requested one.

"Obviously we are trying to prepare a legal appeal and he has difficulties hand writing, so it would be much easier in order to assist us in the preparation if he had a laptop," Robinson said.

She declined to elaborate on why he had difficulties writing.

Assange is in "very good" spirits but "frustrated" that he cannot answer the allegations that WikiLeaks was behind cyber attacks launched on credit card firms which have refused to do business with the website.

"He told me he is absolutely not involved and this is a deliberate attempt to conflate WikiLeaks, which is a publishing organization, with hacking organisations which are not," she said.

Assange is due to appear in a London court again next Tuesday, when his case will be argued by Geoffrey Robertson, a high-profile British-Australian human rights lawyer.

Assange's mother said Friday she was worried for her son because "massive forces" were ranged against him.

Christine Assange, who lives in Queensland, dismissed the rape accusations against her son, but told Australia's Seven Network that she was concerned about what will happen to him.

"Julian, rape, straight out of my guts — no way. Julian would not rape," she said.

She added: "It's a worry, of course. I am no different from any other mother. Every time the news goes on I am glued to it.

"These massive forces have decided they are going to stop him and they are not going to play by the rules."

Cables released by WikiLeaks overnight Thursday showed Washington has suspected for years that Myanmar has a secret nuclear program supported by North Korea, with witnesses reporting suspicious activity dating back to 2004.

One cable from the U.S. embassy in Yangon, dated August of that year, quoted an unidentified source as saying he saw about 300 North Koreans working at an underground site.

"The North Koreans, aided by Burmese workers, are constructing a concrete-reinforced underground facility that is '500ft from the top of the cave to the top of the hill above'," the cable said.

"The North Koreans are said to be assembling missiles of unknown origin," it said, adding that the report alone should not been taken as definitive proof or evidence of sizeable North Korean military involvement with the Myanmar regime.

Another leaked release said U.S. pharmaceutical giant Pfizer had sought damaging information against Nigeria's ex-attorney general to pressure him into dropping lawsuits over a drug trial.

In the cable published by Britain's Guardian newspaper, Pfizer's country manager in Nigeria, Enrico Liggeri, told U.S. officials of the operation in a meeting on April 9, 2009.

Pfizer has maintained that it had done nothing wrong and has denied any liability.

© Copyright (c) AFP

==========================================================

More on This Story
 
Senators praise firms for dropping WikiLeaks  (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/business/Senators+praise+firms+dropping+WikiLeaks/3956971/story.html)
 Dutch teenager held for WikiLeaks revenge attacks (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/business/Dutch+teenager+held+WikiLeaks+revenge+attacks/3954210/story.html)

WikiLeaks backers threaten more cyber attacks (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/business/WikiLeaks+backers+threaten+more+cyber+attacks/3950887/story.html)

Hackers hit back after WikiLeaks cash cut (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/business/Hackers+back+after+WikiLeaks+cash/3950764/story.html)
 WikiLeaks: online battleground forming as 'hacktivists' strike back (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/business/WikiLeaks+online+battleground+forming+hacktivists+strike+back/3944724/story.html)

Related Stories from Around the Web

The War You Don't See (http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2010/dec/09/the-war-you-dont-see-review) – review  Guardian, UK  Friday, December 10, 2010

Former WikiLeaks worker: rival site under way (http://infor.md/dTlV4)  Inform  Friday, December 10, 2010

WikiLeaks says has no link to cyber attacks (http://infor.md/pK3kWy)  Reuters  Thursday, December 09, 2010
 

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 10, 2010, 16:40:40
There is no state censorship at play here. For that a court would have to decide in a concrete case against the freedom of the press. And that has not occurred here -- mainly because the Internet companies did not even take their chances with the legal route.
It wasn't a case of "taking ones chances" in court. There was no need; it was a business decision. Your assumption that because business doesn't agree with your limited worldview, it should be a legal fight, is simply wrong.

Quote
There is a saying "pick your battles." Well, Internet giants Amazon and PayPal have clearly decided not to join the fight for Wilek's. They are avoiding conflict and have thrown out the activists by pointing to their terms and conditions. They have the right to do so. Companies should be allowed to be cowards, if the risk seems too high for them.
  ::)  As much as these internet warriors like to see this as the battle royale against "the man" -- with the added benefit of not getting pepper-sprayed or getting their hands dirty -- again, it's not cowardice, it's business.



Quote
Yet these calls for a boycott should be welcomed.
Yes, absolutely, but not for the reason the Black-Bloc wannabes imagine.

They should be welcomed because it will very likely confirm what Amazon and PayPal are betting on: the people who buy books and music through Amazon, and pay for it via PayPal, are probably the demographic that has jobs, spends money on line, and thinks Assange is an idiot.

Sorry, but conversely, those protesting are more likely to be people who think downloading a bootleg copy supports "the greater good," don't have sufficient surplus income to justify PayPal seeking their business, and have no concept of honour.....in the sense that giving away Afghan supporters' names or highlighting our C-IED vulnerabilities is a bad thing.


So bring on the protests. Sad, that you've chosen this as your shining hour of glory.   ::)



Edit: Yes, I'm expecting to lose more MilPoints from those who are offended that I use large words and don't believe that sitting in a classroom makes one intelligent. I'm OK; take 'em.   ;)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 10, 2010, 18:01:26
It's strange how we think of the internet as a public utility when in reality it is almost entirely privately owned. Perhaps it should become a public utility if it is proven to be an essential service. Many people think of it as such already.

I also have found my own Diplomatic Cable to release from HM Embassy in Moscow.

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v483/Nemo888/aer.png)

Released in 2000 under UK Freedom of Information Act.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: E.R. Campbell on December 10, 2010, 18:05:37
It's strange how we think of the internet as a public utility when in reality it is almost entirely privately owned. Perhaps it should become a public utility if it is proven to be an essential service. Many people think of it as such already.


Public utilities are often (usually?) regulated by someone who claims to have the public's best interests at heart ...

I rather prefer the unregulated status quo.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on December 10, 2010, 18:13:23
I also have found my own Diplomatic Cable to release from HM Embassy in Moscow.

That is more hilarious and poignant than any of those Wikileaks thefts.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ModlrMike on December 10, 2010, 20:33:42
It's strange how we think of the internet as a public utility when in reality it is almost entirely privately owned. Perhaps it should become a public utility if it is proven to be an essential service. Many people think of it as such already.

I also have found my own Diplomatic Cable to release from HM Embassy in Moscow.

If this was the sort of thing that was being released, then I wouldn't have much of an issue. However, lives are at stake here. Real people's lives that these self appointed champions of free speech are quite happy to endanger. Witness the "cracked eggs" comment.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 11, 2010, 11:39:37
 ;D

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote
'Nature Is Good, as Long as It Is Controlled'


US Diplomats Analyzed Death Of Bruno the Bear


12/03/2010
By Sebastian Fischer and Ralf Neukirch
SPIEGEL ONLINE

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,732532,00.html)

The US diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks have generated a commotion around the world. In addition to reporting on the internal workings of global governments, the dispatches also include some oddities, like the 2006 shooting of Bruno, the first wild bear to wander into Germany in 170 years.

It was one of those great moments in Bavarian politics. When Bruno the wild brown bear wandered over the Alps from Italy into the southern German state, then-Governor Edmund Stoiber was quick to address the matter. Actually, Bavaria was pleased to welcome bears to the state, he said. Provided they are normal bears. Stoiber's definition at the time: "The bear that normally resides in the forest, doesn't leave it and kills perhaps one or two sheep per year."


So far, so good. But Bruno, who wandered over from Italy's Trentino province, had a well-documented penchant for killing livestock, pets and other animals. "And we see a difference between the normal bear, the malicious bear and the problem bear," Stoiber explained. And, yes, "it is very clear that this bear is a problem bear," he concluded.

The government of Bavaria ultimately gave permission for the bear to be shot by hunters. Bruno, the first wild bear to arrive in Bavaria for over 170 years, was killed (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/bruno_the_brown_bear/) on June 26, 2006, in the mountainous Kümpflalm area above Spitzingsee lake in the Alps.

US Diplomats Wax Poetic about Bruno

Of course, American diplomats stationed in Munich, the capital of Bavaria, and in Berlin didn't miss any of this. Information about the bear hunt was promptly cabled back to Washington. In the newly-leaked US diplomatic dispatches, one can find detailed information about Bruno the brown bear. That summer the US Consulate, located near Governor Stoiber's offices in Munich, registered some fundamental thoughts on the German understanding of the natural world.

They noted with some amusement that Bruno had even pushed the football World Cup, which was being held in Germany, into the background. The diplomats described the wild bear chase that ensued and the doomed mission undertaken by Finnish bear hunters who had been specially flown in for the task. They were almost poetic in their writing: "Early in the morning of that same day, Bruno met his demise at the hands of an (as yet) unnamed hunter."

According to the US diplomats, Bruno had forfeited his right to Bavarian hospitality because he was not "willing to adapt to German culture and traditions," as former Bavarian Interior Minister Günther Beckstein had often required of every other foreigner. And obviously the diplomats did not omit Stoiber's classification of Bruno as a "problem bear."

Germans Prefer Their Nature Tame

The end of a June 30 dispatch from Munich offered the following shrewd analysis: The greatest insight to be gained from the whole Bruno affair was that, although German society liked to appear environmentally friendly and "green," modern Germany still had difficulty relating to untamed nature.


There had not been genuine wildlife in the mountainous parts of Bavaria for generations, the report said. "Nature is good, as long as it is controlled, channeled and subdued," it concluded. The diplomatic prognosis was dim. "If the saga of Bavaria's 'Problem Bear' is any indicator, the strategy of reintroducing wild bears to the Alps, at least the German Alps, may be doomed to failure -- that is, unless the bears are willing to cooperate by not being too wild."

After the death of the bear, the Bavarians occupied themselves in a very Prussian manner with possible successors to Bruno. A "Management Plan for Brown Bears in Bavaria" was developed, complete with concrete tips for hikers, should they happen to accidentally encounter another Bruno at some point in the future. "Under normal circumstances a bear will not attack," one tip helpfully offers. "They will smell you and judge you not to be dangerous." Regardless, hikers should make their presence known to bears by, for example, singing loudly.

But, since Bruno, there hasn't been a single brown bear to have wandered into Germany from abroad. Apparently it didn't take access to the confidential US diplomatic dispatches to get that message across to Italy's bear population.


===================================================================

DISPATCH: FULL TEXT OF THE BRUNO CABLE
Click on the headline in order to read the text ...

June 30, 2006 -- Munich: "Bruno's Last Stand"
Important information about the cables...

<<69936>> 6/30/2006 13:30 06MUNICH397 Consulate Munich UNCLASSIFIED

VZCZCXRO6095 PP RUEHAG RUEHDF RUEHLZ DE RUEHMZ #0397/01 1811330 ZNR UUUUU ZZH P 301330Z JUN 06 FM AMCONSUL MUNICH TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3318 INFO RUCNFRG/FRG COLLECTIVE TAGS: PGOV, SENV, GM SUBJECT: BRUNO'S LAST STAND -- FIRST WILD BEAR IN 170 YEARS

Unclas section 01 of 02 munich 000397

Sipdis

Sipdis

E.o. 12958: n/a Tags: pgov, senv, gm Subject: bruno's last stand -- first wild bear in 170 years proves too wild for bavaria

------- summary -------

1. Despite all the attention surrounding the World Cup, EADS' woes and health care reform, Bavarians and many Germans have been transfixed by a two-year-old brown bear named "Bruno" that wandered across international borders into Bavaria, a government minister's agenda, a hunter's crosshairs, and the hearts of millions. Following Bruno's government-sanctioned shooting, questions remain over the political fallout and the future of wild bears in the German Alps. The incident also offers a snippet of insight into German attitudes toward the environment. End Summary.

----------------------- a visitor named "bruno" -----------------------

2. The bear, dubbed "Bruno" by the media, began his journey in Italy, where he was released as part of a program to reintroduce brown bears from Slovenia in the Alps. After wandering across the border from Austria, he was first sighted in Bavaria on May 20. As the first wild bear seen in Germany since 1835, Bruno was initially extended a warm public welcome by Bavarian Environment Minister Werner Schnappauf -- after all, Bruno could prove a boon for Bavaria's image just as visitors from around the world arrived for the World Cup.

------------------ the "problem bear" ------------------

3. However, as Bavarian Interior Minister Beckstein has often emphasized, foreigners are only welcome in Bavaria provided they are willing to adapt to German culture and traditions. Bruno quickly wore out his welcome by raiding stables, killing sheep, chickens, and a child's pet rabbit. The Bavarian government declared Bruno "Ursus non Grata" and ordered that he be shot or captured. Vexed by Bruno's unchecked roaming across Bavaria -- he was even seen sitting on the steps of a police station eating a guinea pig -- Minister-President Edmund Stoiber took to referring to him as "the Problem Bear."

4. Nevertheless, Bruno appeared to win the battle for the hearts and minds of the public -- Schnappauf received some 1,300 letters and drawings from children all over Germany appealing for Bruno to be kept alive. Following criticism of the edict that Bruno be shot, Schnappauf gave the animal a stay of execution and, at a cost of over Euro 125,000, flew in a special trap from Colorado and a team of Finnish bear hunters with specially trained dogs. After the Finnish hunters failed at their task, Schnappauf reinstated the shoot-to-kill order effective June 26. Early in the morning of that same day, Bruno met his demise at the hands of an (as yet) unnamed hunter. Bruno, stuffed, is to be put on display at a natural history museum in Munich's Nymphenburg Palace.

----------------------------------- "may his ursine soul rest in peace" -----------------------------------

5. Almost immediately, criticism of the Bavarian government started pouring in from across Bavaria and the world. Minister Schnappauf has received multiple death threats and calls for his resignation. State prosecutors have received nine legal complaints, several against Schnappauf, for alleged breaches of hunting and animal protection laws. Death threats have also been made against the hunter. Schnappauf has defended himself by saying that had Bruno attacked a human, calls for his resignation would be better justified. Future bears, he said, would be welcome in Bavaria, provided they behaved appropriately.

6. The "Bruno" saga has received a disproportional share of press play, including in the international media. The Munich tabloid "TZ," which has devoted no less than eleven cover pages to Bruno since May 21, published an obituary threatening revenge at the voting booth for Bruno's death, and called on people to send protest letters and e-mails to Minister-President Stoiber and Minister Schnappauf. Germany's major tabloid "Bild" even suggested a state funeral for Bruno might be appropriate. "Spiegel Online's" daily updated ""Bruno Watch" included an obituary entitled "A Problem Bear or Bavaria's Problem?" and compared Bruno's death with that of Elvis, Marilyn Monroe, Jimi Hendrix, John Lennon, and Princess Diana. Mirroring the sentiment of the general public, the piece concluded: "For indeed Bruno was murdered, shot down in the prime of his young life, executed

Munich 00000397 002 of 002

in cold blood. We should reflect now on whether we feel happy with what we have done. We share a collective guilt for Bruno's demise, our inability to co-exist with nature has yet again prompted us to reach for the trigger. Bruno is dead and we are all the poorer for it: May his ursine soul rest in peace."

------- comment -------

7. Bruno has been the media's June flavor of the month. While the attention lavished on Bruno has taken nearly everyone by surprise, we expect the criticism leveled at Schnappauf and Stoiber to be relatively fleeting -- radical animal rights advocates who make death threats aren't generally considered the CSU's base anyway. Perhaps the greatest insight from the whole Bruno affair might be that despite the veneer of "greenness" extolled by German society, modern Germany in fact coexists uneasily with untamed nature. The contrast between the massive hunt for the first wild bear seen in Bavaria in over 170 years and the recent story of a clawless housecat treeing a bear in New Jersey couldn't be much more stark. True wilderness, even in mountainous Bavaria, hasn't really existed in Germany for generations -- nature is good, as long as it is controlled, channeled, and subdued. If the saga of Bavaria's "Problem Bear" is any indicator, the strategy of reintroducing wild bears to the Alps, at least the German Alps, may be doomed to failure -- that is, unless the bears are willing to cooperate by not being too wild.

8. This report has been coordinated with Embassy Berlin.

9. Previous reporting from Munich is available on our SIPRNET website at www.state.sgov.gov/p/eur/munich/ .

Rooney



More on LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,732532,00.html)

RELATED SPIEGEL ONLINE LINKS

Photo Gallery: Bavaria's Wild Bear Summer  (http://www.spiegel.de/fotostrecke/fotostrecke-62325.html)

Orso Problemo: Dino the Bear Divides the Italians (05/11/2010) (http://www.spiegel.de/international/zeitgeist/0,1518,693378,00.html)

SPIEGEL ONLINE - 07.10.2008: Bruno's Half-Brother Spotted Close to German Border (http://www.spiegel.de/international/zeitgeist/0,1518,582762,00.html)

SPIEGEL ONLINE - 26.03.2008: Bruno Finds Final Resting Place in Munich Museum (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,543487,00.html)

SPIEGEL 360: The Tragic End of Bruno the Bear (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/bruno_the_brown_bear/)

From the Archive: Brown Bear Meets a Tragic End (06/26/2006) (http://www.spiegel.de/international/0,1518,423629,00.html)

From the Archive: A Problem Bear or Bavaria's Problem? (06/26/2006) (http://www.spiegel.de/international/0,1518,423734,00.html)






Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 11, 2010, 11:50:55
Putting some names and faces forward as to who leaked what and when:


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote
WikiLeaks Cables Fallout


Mole in Germany's FDP Party Comes Forward


12/02/2010
By Severin Weiland
SPIEGEL ONLINE

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,732579,00.html)

The secret is out. The informant, who shared information about negotiations to form Germany's current government coalition with the US ambassador in Berlin, has disclosed his identity to the Free Democratic Party. An FDP spokesman claims there is no evidence he broke the law or passed on any classified material.

Germany's business-friendly Free Democratic Party has identified the top-level national party employee responsible for passing secret information on to US diplomats during the negotiations to form the current German government in 2009. A worker at the party's headquarters who was chief of staff to the FDP chairman, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, came forward and admitted to being the source, an FDP party spokesperson said. The news came after party officials had questioned workers about the issue.

A report in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper stated that the person in question is Helmut M., Westerwelle's chief of staff, who was also the head of international relations for the national party. The 42-year-old has been relieved of his current duties, but not fired.

The office of the FDP's executive body confirmed the information to SPIEGEL ONLINE on Thursday. Helmut M. became chief of staff to the chairman of the party in Berlin after Westerwelle became Germany's foreign minister in a coalition government with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative Christian Democrats in 2009. During the coalition talks, Helmut M. had participated as a notetaker, FDP officials stated.

In a cable (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,731645,00.html) sent back to Washington that has been published online by WikiLeaks and cited by SPIEGEL, US Ambassador Philip Murphy described the worker as a "young, up-and-coming party loyalist." The cable states that during his meetings at the US Embassy in Berlin, he brought along internal papers from the coalition talks, including participant lists from working groups, schedules and handwritten notes. According to SPIEGEL information, they include, for example, information about an internal dispute over disarmament that took shape during the coalition negotiations.

The case has caused serious concern within the party since the publication of the report in SPIEGEL. In Germany, some are asking if the State Department crossed the line between diplomacy and the kind of intelligence usually associated with the CIA and other foreign intelligence agencies. And the fact that Westerwelle's chief of staff in the party headquarters served as the informant to the US will deal a serious blow to his party. It's now clear why the US ambassador appeared so pleased in his cables back to Washington -- after all, his mole had the ear of the head of the party and was part of the inner circle of party leadership. The motives Helmut M. might have had for sharing potentially sensitive information with the Americans remains a mystery for many inside the party.

'Tragic'

After SPIEGEL published the information over the weekend, FDP party chief Westerwelle declared: "I don't believe this story" as it had been reported. Inside the party, the incident is being described as "tragic," because Helmut M. was a well-liked colleague who was known for being upstanding, smart and an affable person to work with.

In Berlin, rumors have been circling in recent days about five people who might have served as the US informant. On Monday, FDP party boss Westerwelle rejected a suggestion at the meeting of the party's board by his deputy, Economics Minister Rainer Brüderle, that party employees who were involved in the coalition talks submit statements under oath. Instead, Westerwelle expressed his trust in his colleagues, while also announcing that he would be conducting talks with them.

FDP party spokesman Wulf Oehme confirmed on Thursday in Berlin that the party leadership had taken the step of questioning participants in last year's coalition negotiations, a move it believed had been appropriate. "As part of this, an employee of the FDP national party headquarters responsible for international contacts disclosed that he had shared freely available information at his own responsibility and within the context of his work to numerous employees at other parties and that he had also had contact for discussions with the US Embassy." The spokesman said that no secret information had been passed on and that the embassy had not been allowed to view classified documents.

Oehme said the employee in question said he had regretted the impression created in the reporting that he had had any sort of contact that was unusual. "There is no evidence whatsoever of legally questionable behavior," he said.

Still, it appears Helmut M. went a step too far, although it remains unclear how far. According to one cable from the ambassador, the informant offered the material to the diplomats. But in internal questioning at his party, he is said to have claimed that the Americans made a request to him.

Party officials said he would remain an employee at the FDP's national headquarters, but that it had not be determined in what capacity.



More on LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,732579,00.html)

SPIEGEL 360: Our Complete Coverage of the WikiLeaks Diplomatic Cables (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/wikileaks_diplomatic_cables/)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 11, 2010, 13:55:35
Is there a shift in direction as to where the US will focus its attentions?


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote
US Diplomats in the EU


Manipulating the Political Dwarves of Europe


12/10/2010
By Gregor Peter Schmitz
SPIEGEL ONLINE

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,733991,00.html)

European Union politicians like to see themselves as having global reach. But the US would beg to differ, according to American diplomatic cables from European capitals. Competition between Merkel, Sarkozy and others means it is easy for Washington to play EU leaders off against each other.

It was November 2007 in Texas and the German chancellor was invited to George W. Bush's ranch in Crawford. Only a select few world leaders had been granted such an honor. Even Merkel's husband Joachim Sauer, casually dressed in jeans, accompanied her for the visit to the then-US president, a rarity for a man who seldom accompanies the chancellor on her trips abroad. Merkel, her husband and the Bushes smiled under the Texas sun.


Prior to the visit, though, US diplomats had coolly assembled a cost-benefit analysis. "Merkel is competing with a more dynamic French President (Nicolas) Sarkozy for attention on the international stage," reads a cable from the US Embassy in Berlin. Sarkozy's visit to Washington and his speech before Congress a couple days previous certainly hadn't escaped the German chancellor's notice, the cable notes. A visit to the ranch afforded an opportunity for the German leader to present herself as Europe's most important politician.

One could, however, exact a price for the visit, the memo suggested. Bush could demand progress on certain key issues in return -- on Germany's involvement in Afghanistan, for example.

Especially Susceptible

Pressure, requests, playing various parties off each other -- the memo concerning Merkel's ranch visit offers insight into America's handling of Europe. The continent, which would so dearly love to retain its role as Washington's most important ally, is no longer taken so seriously by those responsible for US foreign policy. European leaders are seen as political dwarves, not least because they let themselves be played off against one another so easily.

Nicolas Sarkozy is considered especially susceptible to influence. A memo from the US Embassy in Paris prior to the status-conscious French president's first official visit to Washington in 2007 reads, "'Sarkozy the American' is a well-known epithet long applied to France's new president.... The US was the only other country Sarkozy mentioned by name in his victory statement." When Barack Obama, then a presidential candidate, traveled to Paris in July 2008, another dispatch notes, Sarkozy hastily rearranged his schedule just to be able to hold a press conference with Obama. He "is hoping for intense and regular contact with President Obama," the dispatch reads.

A document from the US Embassy in Great Britain expresses similar sentiments about then-Prime Minister Gordon Brown -- a document created shortly after Brown took office. The dispatch noted that the new prime minister didn't want to be seen as Bush's "poodle," as his predecessor Tony Blair had been. Here too, though, the conclusion was that, "he wants -- and knows that Britain needs -- a strong relationship with the US administration."

Everyone wants something from Washington, it would seem -- and the US looks down on the Europeans as a result. The administration of Bush's successor Obama thus feels confident about ignoring European wishes or playing politicians off against one another. "Officials in Washington know better than anyone how European leaders compete for an audience with the president or secretary of state," says British historian Timothy Garton Ash of Oxford University. "The silly game is the same."

Less than Thrilled

Obama himself considers the game especially absurd. Raised partly in Indonesia and with no personal ties to Europe, the president pays little attention to trans-Atlantic sensibilities. Instead, he looks to Asia and speaks of a "Pacific century."

During a 2009 visit to Europe, the American president chose to spend a quiet evening in the company of friends, rather than publicly celebrating trans-Atlantic unity with Sarkozy and his wife Carla Bruni. The French president was less than thrilled. For his visit with Gordon Brown, Obama had a DVD collection of old movies on hand as a present for his host. But the president had difficulty using the term "special relationship" to describe the bond between London and Washington.

The diplomatic memos now reveal just how coolly Obama's diplomats toy with European vanities -- at a time when many in Europe had succumbed to Obama-mania. A photo opportunity with the most powerful man in the world was a political jackpot.

American diplomats, for example, had the following to say about Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero and his ministers: "For domestic political reasons, they intensely want a US-EU summit, and the lack of a Presidential visit would be seen as a major failure of Zapatero." The desire for an Obama visit on the part of the prime minister could be used to serve America's own interests, the memo further analyzed -- by requiring Spain to provide concrete help with Afghanistan, Iran or Guantanamo in exchange for Obama's attendance at the summit, for example.

Not Enough

Zapatero had, as it happens, already sent additional soldiers to Afghanistan during his first term in office and his country had also agreed to accept five prisoners from Guantanamo.

But it wasn't enough. Shortly before the summit, as European leaders were quarrelling over seating arrangements at the dinner with Obama, the president abruptly cancelled his participation, citing his busy schedule. One can do such things with the Europeans. The US news magazine Time had only recently run a cover story called "The Incredible Shrinking Europe."

The financial crisis and the problems with the euro only strengthened US skepticism. Europe's uncoordinated response to the debt crisis served to prove the US belief that Europe lacked a leader. The complaint from former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger that Europe lacked a telephone number, the dispatches make clear, is as applicable as ever.

One diplomatic memo, dated December 2009, attempted to make sense of the "troika," the collection of leaders that represents the European Union in foreign affairs. "At present … the EU has four distinct parties in the room: the Presidency country (Sweden), the incoming Presidency (Spain), the Commission and the Council Secretariat. Under the Lisbon Treaty, troika attendance is expected to be consolidated under the delegated chair of the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy ... Catherine Ashton," the memo reads. Any questions?

'Omnipresence and Hyper-Activity'


As for Ashton, a politician supposedly empowered to represent the EU in talks with the US, the American foreign policy establishment holds no illusions: "The deal appears to have been reached after British Prime Minister Brown realized he could not maintain Tony Blair's candidacy for the President's job." In other words, the Americans see the EU's top diplomat as a candidate born of internal intrigue.

Ashton aside, the US doesn't see a clear leader in Europe.


Angela Merkel? She is strong, US diplomats note, but largely because her opponents are so weak.


Nicolas Sarkozy? "His omnipresence and hyper-activity risk overexposure." Plus, the diplomats continued, the French president had intimidated those closest to him to such a degree that there was hardly anyone who would even tell him if he "is less than fully dressed." According to a cable from December 2009, US sources in the presidential palace, the Elysée, said that Sarkozy's plane once made a detour so that he didn't have to see the Eiffel Tower lit up in the colors of the Turkish flag. The Parisian mayor had instigated the light show to impress his guest, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.


■And David Cameron, Brown's successor as the guardian of British-American relations? The new British prime minister, American diplomats reported after a conversation with a high-ranking British banker, was politically small-minded and lacking in substance.

The only thing that can help this situation is European humility. British foreign minister, William Hague, has said: "The world has changed and if we do not change with it, Britain's role is set to decline." The new coalition in London now avoids using the term "special relationship."


Related articles

Trans-Atlantic Relations (http://www.spiegel.de/international/topic/trans_atlantic_relations/)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 11, 2010, 14:31:45

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote



WikiLeaks supporters’ group abandons cyber attacks



By Georgina Prodhan, Reuters

December 11, 2010 11:02 AM
Ottawa Citizen

LINK  (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/WikiLeaks+supporters+group+abandons+cyber+attacks/3963276/story.html)


LONDON, Dec 11 (Reuters) - A loose grouping of cyber activists supporting WikiLeaks has abandoned its strategy of online attacks on organisations seen as hostile to the site in favour of spreading the leaked documents far and wide online.

Internet activists operating under the name “Anonymous” temporarily brought down this week the websites of credit card giants MasterCard and Visa — both of which had stopped processing donations to WikiLeaks.

The United States, enraged and embarrassed by WikiLeaks’ publication of thousands of confidential U.S. diplomatic cables, has leant on organisations from Amazon to online payments service PayPal — which have now withdrawn services to WikiLeaks.

In an overnight blog post, Anonymous announced a change of strategy, saying it now aimed to publish parts of the confidential U.S. diplomatic cables as widely as possible and in ways that made them as hard as possible to trace.

The cyber activists briefly brought down PayPal’s official blog by bombarding it with requests this week but failed to harm retail and Web-hosting giant Amazon, which withdrew its services to WikiLeaks more than a week ago.

“We have, at best, given them a black eye. The game has changed. When the game changes, so too must our strategies,” said the blog post announcing “Operation: Leakspin.”

The activists are now encouraging supporters to search through leaked cables on the WikiLeaks site and publish summaries of ones that have been least exposed, labelling them so they are hard to find by any authority seeking to quash them.

“Use misleading tags, everything from “Tea Party” to “Bieber.” Post snippets of the leaks everywhere,” the blog said, referring to the U.S. grassroots conservative movement and the 16-year-old Canadian pop phenomenon Justin Bieber.

Similar strategies have been used in the past on YouTube and the now defunct Napster by users seeking to share video and music while dodging copyright crackdowns.

The activists had previously been using denial of service attacks, in which they bombarded the Web servers of the perceived enemies of WikiLeaks with requests that crashed the sites, in an operation named “Operation Payback.”


© Copyright (c) Reuters

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 11, 2010, 23:08:09
WikiLeaks 'hacktivists': Freedom defenders or nerd supremacists?

LOS ANGELES - Rafix was set to attack. The target: Visa.com. The weapon: a battery of personal computers ready to jam the site with millions of simultaneous log-in requests.

"FIRE AT WILL, gentlemen!" Rafix wrote in an online message. "Enjoy the EPIC battle of GLORY!"

Within seconds of the battle cry, the attackers crippled the website of the world's largest credit card company. Unable to weather the massive surge in traffic, Visa's site was out of commission for most of the day.

Visa came under fire for its decision to suspend the processing of donations to WikiLeaks, the controversial website that has been publishing confidential U.S. government documents. The attack was co-ordinated through an Internet chat room where more than 1,000 online activists were signed in, massing for the call to fire.

Angry about what they saw as an infringement of Internet freedom, hacker activists also launched successful attacks Wednesday on websites for MasterCard, PayPal, Swiss bank Post-Finance and the Swedish prosecutor leading the sexual assault case against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

The "hacktivists," working under the banner of Operation Payback, are part of a new breed of online protesters who say they are ready to engage in acts of cyber-disobedience against major corporations, politicians and religious institutions, all in the name of defending their ideals.

But some believe that these digital crusaders are more interested in using their skills to do damage than they are in making a political statement.

"What I'm seeing in my nerd brethren is an increasing combativeness, a loss of empathy and creepiness," said Jaron Lanier, a critic of digital culture and a pioneering computer scientist who helped develop virtual reality.

"It's just another supremacy movement, ultimately. It just happens to be nerd supremacy."

The membership of these groups is fluid, and tends to consist of unidentified Internet denizens, giving rise to the catchall name their members use: Anonymous.

The code name Rafix probably was created moments before the attack.

Their tactic of choice is the "distributed denial of service" attack, a kind of Internet blitz that comes when the attackers try to jam a company's website by getting large numbers of computers to contact it at the same time, a bit like a group of pickets blocking the entrance to a grocery store.

In the latest incidents, the attackers made use of a specially designed hacker weapon dubbed the "Low Orbit Ion Cannon" after a space laser in the Star Wars movies.

The Cannon, actually a software program anyone could download, allowed the group's leaders to take control of members' computers in order to aim them, en masse, at target websites.

"Corrupt governments of the world," began a recent message on the group's YouTube site. "To move to censor content on the Internet based on your own prejudice is, at best, laughably impossible, at worst, morally reprehensible."

Hacking has been around as long as the Internet, but has generally been the province of vandals, organized criminals or programmers simply flaunting their technical prowess, said Marc Cooper, a professor at USC's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

"This is the first time we're really seeing a mass movement of cyber-sabotage with political overtones," he said.

"Whatever the legality and morality, I think it has an undeniable Robin Hood type of resonance with lots of people."

As is true of WikiLeaks, the members of Anonymous come from many countries, work in secret and often set their own rules, haranguing adversaries by barraging websites, breaking into email accounts and posting targets' personal information on the Web.

This year, the sites of the Recording Industry Association of America and the Motion Picture Association of America were brought down temporarily by attackers furious about the organizations' efforts to stop online file-sharing.

Law enforcement authorities say these attacks, which can cause severe disruption to businesses, can easily cross the line from demonstration to criminal action.

On Thursday, Dutch police arrested a 16-year-old boy for participating in the attack against Visa as well as one against MasterCard. The boy confessed to participating in the assaults, according to a statement from the Netherlands' national prosecutor.

Last month, 22-year-old David Kernell was sentenced to one year in prison for breaking into the personal email account of then-vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin in 2008 and posting some of her emails online. Kernell had been allied with a message board called 4Chan that is a frequent gathering place for Anonymous agitators.

And last year, a New Jersey man pleaded guilty to having launched an attack against the Church of Scientology's website in 2008.

In an online manifesto, Anonymous members quoted Electronic Frontier Foundation co-founder John Perry Barlow, who had sent out a tweet last week saying, "The first serious info war is now engaged. The field of battle is WikiLeaks. You are the troops."

Reached by phone this week, Barlow said he was impressed by how quickly Anonymous had organized against its foes, but said he did not condone the attacks.

"I don't think that if you're trying to convey the right to know, the answer is to shut somebody up," said Barlow, who is a fellow at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet and Society.

To be sure, the group also encouraged people to promote Assange's cause via Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and other means, noting that "social networking sites are critical hubs of information distribution."

But Anonymous' Twitter and Facebook accounts were themselves suspended.

Facebook said the account owners were violating its terms of use by promoting the attacks.
 article link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/WikiLeaks+hacktivists+Freedom+defenders+nerd+supremacists/3963852/story.html#ixzz17rXWdqLY)
                      (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 11, 2010, 23:18:16
WikiLeaks boss put in isolation
 Court date Tuesday; U.S. suspects Myanmar building nukes: new cable
By GUY JACKSON, AFP December 11, 2010
Article Link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/WikiLeaks+boss+isolation/3961512/story.html)
 
Police moved WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange to the segregation unit of a London jail for his safety, his lawyer said yesterday, as new cables showed the United States suspects Myanmar has a secret nuclear program.

The 39-year-old Australian has been transferred from the main part of Wandsworth prison to an isolation unit, said Jennifer Robinson, one of Assange's legal team.

"The prison authorities are doing it for his own safety, presumably," she told Agence France-Presse.

Assange is to appear in a London court Tuesday for a second time after being arrested on a warrant issued by Sweden, where prosecutors want to speak to him about allegations of rape and sexual molestation made by two women.

WikiLeaks insists the allegations are politically motivated, because the whistleblowing website has enraged Washington and governments around the world by releasing thousands of U.S. diplomatic cables.

Robinson complained that Assange "does not get any recreation" in the prison and "has difficulties getting phone calls out. ... He is on his own."

Assange, a former computer hacker, is not allowed to have a laptop computer in his cell, but his lawyers have requested one.

"We are trying to prepare a legal appeal and he has difficulties hand writing, so it would be much easier to assist us in the preparation if he had a laptop," Robinson said, although she did not elaborate on why he had difficulties writing.

Cables released overnight by WikiLeaks showed Washington has suspected for years that Myanmar has a secret nuclear program supported by North Korea, with witnesses reporting suspicious activity dating back to 2004.
More on link

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 12, 2010, 05:39:54
WikiLeaks backlash all bark, no bite: experts

WASHINGTON, (AFP) - Despite their martial overtones, the attacks on credit card and other websites by supporters of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange are more political protest than real cyber war, experts say.

Over the past week, the Internet has rung with a call to virtual arms by "Anonymous," a band of computer hackers that has targeted websites of Visa, Mastercard, PayPal and others for cutting off WikiLeaks access to funds.

"The war is on," the group has proclaimed, vowing to attack any entity with an "anti-WikiLeas agenda."

But the campaign has fallen short of a real cyber war, said James Lewis, a specialist in cybersecurity at the Center for International and Strategic Studies, a Washington think tank.

"I would say that a war involves damage and destruction. This is more like a noisy political demonstration, like a mob surrounding a bank and refusing to let anyone in or out. It’s not war," he said.

"For me, this is political theater, kabuki — entertaining and perhaps influential, but much less than war."

Calling it cyberwar is "a piece of rhetoric," said Allan Friedman, research director at the Brookings Institution’s technology innovation center — especially, he added, since there are no clearly identified camps and "Anonymous" is merely a "very loose online community."

"What people call cyberwar is much more a cybermob," he said.

"The Anonymous have succeed in shaking things up but they have thus far not actually managed to do anything that has any lasting effect."

With their denial of service attacks, which paralyze targeted websites under a deluge of bogus requests to a server, hackers have only hit at companies’ windows on the web, which is "a fairly easy thing to do," Friedman said.

"They’ll have a first move advantage but I don’t think this is sustainable. And all of the websites that have been attacked are now back online," he said.

Similar denial of service attacks originating in Russia, but even more massive in scale, struck Estonia in 2007 and Georgia in 2008, causing temporary disruptions.

"These attacks have a political effect but I don’t think they have a lot of effect on people’s confidence in using their credit cards," Adam Segal, an expert at the Council on Foreign Relations, said of the most recent attacks.

Visa and Mastercard have continued to conduct transactions, and people have continued making payments with credit cards.

Far more difficult to pull off would be the kind of viral attack that penetrates banking networks and brings down systems for handling financial transactions, these experts say.

"I’m not sure about the capacity of these groups. Probably some of them are quite good, they can probably cause some damage, but it’s not clear to me what political purpose it would serve, given the context," Segal said.

article link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/WikiLeaks+backlash+bark+bite+experts/3964179/story.html#ixzz17tA0ds6R)
                     (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 12, 2010, 11:49:09
So bring on the protests. Sad, that you've chosen this as your shining hour of glory.   ::)
Can I call 'em, or what?  ;D
Quote

WikiLeaks 'hacktivists': Freedom defenders or nerd supremacists?
 
"FIRE AT WILL, gentlemen!" Rafix wrote in an online message. "Enjoy the EPIC battle of GLORY!"
Link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/WikiLeaks+hacktivists+Freedom+defenders+nerd+supremacists/3963852/story.html#ixzz17rXWdqLY)


Quote
WikiLeaks supporters’ group  abandons cyber attacks
Is that like a "Friends of Bill W" thing   ;)



ps - resorting to "stereotype and generalizations" is obligatory when discussing the activities of groups of people; one uses such generalizations as are based on commonly-observed attributes. While acknowledging that individual members of any herd behave with slight differences, that doesn't make the generalizations any less valid -- even if it hurts the feelings of those herds' members.   ;)


Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PuckChaser on December 12, 2010, 11:51:35
They abandoned the cyber attacks because the media recently released how easy it was to track who was doing the attacks unless they were using something like Tor to mask their identities. The kids that downloaded and ran the "Low Earth Orbit Ion Cannon" hacking script and ran it without hiding behind a whole lot of proxies may end up with a Federal Police knock on the door shortly from whatever country they're in.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 12, 2010, 21:16:49
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote
WikiLeaks supporters’ group abandons cyber attacks



By Georgina Prodhan, Reuters
December 11, 2010 11:02 AM
Ottawa Citizen

LINK  (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/WikiLeaks+supporters+group+abandons+cyber+attacks/3963276/story.html)

So?  What is it?  Are they stopping or are they increasing their attacks?  The MSM doesn't seem to know.



Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote



WikiLeaks cyberwar ramps up


10/12/2010 10:49:20 PM
CBC News

LINK  (http://sync.sympatico.ca/news/wikileaks_cyber_war_ramps_up/f1e9f99d)

Apparent WikiLeaks-related cyberattacks ramped up as thousands of people around the world volunteered their computers for use in the attacks.

Downloads of free software used in the attacks have jumped by thousands of downloads overnight to over 40,000, reported U.S. data security company Imperva Friday.

Meanwhile, the websites of police and prosecutors in the Netherlands were working only sporadically after a 16-year-old was arrested in relation to attacks on MasterCard and PayPal. Dutch media reported that the "hacktivist" group Anonymous, which supports WikiLeaks, had been targeting the two sites with denial-of-service attacks. Such attacks flood websites with traffic, making them unavailable.

Anonymous has taken responsibility for attacks on companies such as Visa that have cut off support to WikiLeaks or have been alleged to have cut off support for WikiLeaks. In Visa's case, it had begun refusing to allow donations to the site on Dec. 7, nine days after WikiLeaks began releasing classified U.S. diplomatic cables onto the internet.

A news release Friday claiming to be from Anonymous said the group wanted "to raise awareness about WikiLeaks and the underhanded methods employed by the above companies to impair WikiLeaks's ability to function."

WikiLeaks distanced itself from the attackers Thursday with this statement on its website: "This group is not affiliated with WikiLeaks. There has been no contact between any WikiLeaks staffer and anyone at Anonymous."

Toronto company hit

MasterCard, Amazon and PayPal have been targeted by attacks, along with the Toronto company EasyDNS, because of the similarity of its name to that of EveryDNS, which had previously helped translate WikiLeaks's IP address into its "wikileaks" domain name.

EveryDNS decided to stop doing that after it was attacked by hackers on the opposite side of the cyberwar - those against WikiLeaks.

Mark Jeftovic, president and CEO of EasyDNS, said word mistakenly spread that his company had revoked its support for WikiLeaks.

"And the backlash started," he said. "It was just incredible. I couldn't believe what was happening."

Since then, Jeftovic has decided to support WikiLeaks by offering its services to two domains that are distributing WikiLeaks content.

Another victim of the attacks was former U.S. Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, whose credit card accounts were hacked after she publicly said WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had "blood on his hands."

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has since said he is looking into the attacks.

David Silverberg, managing editor of the online news website digitaljournal.com, told CBC News that Anonymous, which calls its campaign Operation Payback, believes in a free and open internet.

"And they'll use anarchist methods and what they call hacktivist methods to get their point across."

Silverberg added that the attacks are being carried out by some people who voluntarily download code to harness their computers as "soldiers," along with unwitting "zombie" computers infected by malicious code.

Matt Mullenweg, founder of the online blogging service Wordpress, said he thinks retaliatory hacking is "usually kind of childish on both sides."

Meanwhile, Rob Kozinets, who researches technology and marketing at York University's Schulich School of Business, said attempts to shut down WikiLeaks are doomed to failure, but in the meantime the battle over freedom versus restriction and censorship is playing its way out on the internet.

"It's a game of whack-a-mole," he said. "As soon as you whack that mole, it's not only that another one is popping up, but another one is coming behind you to hit you on the head with a hammer."

With files from The Associated Press



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 13, 2010, 08:54:37

 WikiLeaks founder victim of feminism
  Article Link (http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/WikiLeaks+founder+victim+feminism/3964794/story.html)
Leaks themselves pale beside political motivation for legal harassment
 By Lorne Gunter, edmontonjournal.com December 12, 2010

So far the diplomatic cables disclosed by the website WikiLeaks have failed to impress me.

Ooo, Afghan President Hamid Karzai is corrupt. I never would have guessed. German Chancellor Angela Merkel is averse to sending German troops abroad. (Frankly, it only ever worries me when German chancellors favour sending troops into other countries.)

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin fancies himself an "alpha dog." Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is a decrepit old man who is too cosy with the Russians. Nicolas Sarkozy of France is a "naked emperor." And Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is like Hitler.

Syria promised not to send weapons to Hezbollah, then did anyway. Gasp! The Saudis and other Arabs urged the U.S. to bomb Iran's nuclear sites. The horror! (But it is no surprise that Iranians, who are Persians and Shiite Muslims, are disliked by their neighbours who are Arab and mostly Sunni.)

I'm shocked, shocked I tell you.

Even the most recent revelations, announced Friday -- that Cuba could be broke in two to three years and that North Korea may have given Myanmar nuclear-weapons technology -- are hardly bombshells. Cuba's been in financial trouble ever since the fall of the Soviet Union nearly two decades ago, so much trouble that this past spring it announced it was axing 500,000 public workers. And, while I did not know the North Korea-Myanmar relationship, it hardly surprises.

There are tens of thousands more cables to be released, but given that none of the 251,000 documents given to WikiLeaks were "top secret" and only 15,000 (about six per cent) even made it up to the level of "secret," it's doubtful any of the remaining messages from U.S. diplomats back to their bosses in the State department will contain "game-changing" information.

It's possible that information released about U.S. sources in some autocratic countries could lead to those sources being imprisoned or even executed. But otherwise, this information is mostly gossipy and of little strategic importance.

What is more fascinating are the rape charges emanating from Sweden against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. While I find Assange both conceited and flippant, from what we know of the sexual assault allegations, he would appear to be a victim of the gender war against men.

Timing significant

Two women with whom Assange had sex during a recent speaking-tour stop in Stockholm seem to have had second thoughts about sleeping with him after they learned they had shared him within a matter of days of one another.

In an exhaustive investigation into the allegations, Britain's Daily Mail -- no fan of effete lefty activists such as Assange -- portrayed Assange as the aggrieved party.

The paper learned that "Sarah," Assange's first conquest in Sweden, was an official with a centre-left political party, a known radical feminist, a disciple of one of Sweden's most vehemently feminist academics, a former campus sexual equity officer and a webmistress who, until recently, maintained a website devoted to "7 Steps to Legal Revenge," about how women can use the courts to get back at unfaithful lovers.

Even after filing a police complaint against Assange, Sarah (neither woman's real name can be used because of the nature of the alleged crime) told a Swedish newspaper that in both her case and Jessica's (the other victim's assumed name) "the sex had been consensual from the start but had eventually turned into abuse."

In Sarah's case, the alleged abuse is Assange's refusal to take an HIV/ AIDS test after the condom he used during their episode broke. In Jessica's case, the alleged assault is Assange's refusal even to wear a condom during their second encounter in under 12 hours.

In both cases, though, the women now accusing Assange of assault freely socialized with him after his alleged misconduct -- Sarah hosted him to a party at her apartment and let him stay there several nights, while Jessica went out to breakfast with him immediately after the incident of unprotected sex. Only three days after the two learned that Assange had had sex with each of them did they go to police.

The two women insist jealousy is not their motivation for accusing Assange. Yet both are represented by the same lawyer, who is a leading crusader for broadening Sweden's legal definition of rape so that more men can be successfully convicted.
More on link
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 13, 2010, 08:59:29
So, now he's a "victim" of feminists? 


Just when I thought I had heard everything  ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 13, 2010, 09:01:59
So, now he's a "victim" of feminists? 


Just when I thought I had heard everything  ::)

Or it could be poetic justice....... ;D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 13, 2010, 11:10:49
WikiLeaks rival plans Monday launch after internal split, founders say

Quote
London (CNN) -- Arguing that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has "weakened the organization," a newly organized rival to the website known for leaking official secrets says it will launch Monday.

The founders of Openleaks.org say they are former WikiLeaks members unhappy with the way WikiLeaks is being run under Assange.

"It has weakened the organization," one of those founders, Daniel Domscheit-Berg says in a documentary airing Sunday night on Swedish television network SVT. He said WikiLeaks has become "too much focused on one person, and one person is always much weaker than an organization."

In an e-mail to CNN, Domscheit-Berg said the group hopes to launch its site Monday.

Like WikiLeaks, which facilitates the anonymous disclosure of secret information, Openleaks says its goal is to help people deliver material to news outlets and other organizations without being identified. The Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter, citing internal Openleaks documents, reported that the new site intends to act as an intermediary, "without a political agenda except from the dissemination of information to the media, the public, non-profit organizations, trade and union organizations and other participating groups."

Domscheit-Berg said WikiLeaks put "everything we had" into the high-profile disclosures of hundreds of thousands secret U.S. documents over the past five months.

"I think the wisest thing to do would have been to do this slowly, step by step, to grow the project. That did not happen," he says in the SVT documentary.

Assange and WikiLeaks have been the focus of worldwide condemnation since their first major release of classified U.S. documents in July. Since it began disclosing more than 250,000 U.S. diplomatic cables in November, it has been hit with denial-of-service attacks, been kicked off servers in the United States and France and lost major revenue sources.

And Assange has been held in a British jail since Tuesday as he battles extradition to Sweden, which wants to question him about allegations of sexual assault. Assange has denied any wrongdoing, and supporters have called the charges an attempt to strike back him and his organization.

But Domscheit-Berg said, "If you preach transparency to everyone else, you have to be transparent yourself."

"You have to fulfill the same standards that you expect from others," he told SVT. "And I think that's where we've not been heading in the same direction philosophically anymore."

Another former WikiLeaks staffer said he had brought up his discontent with Assange, but that the WikiLeaks founder had not wanted to listen.

"Eventually this ended with me arguing with Julian about basically his dictatorial behavior, which ended in Julian saying to me that if I had a problem with him I could just 'piss off,' I quote," Herbert Snorreson said.

WikiLeaks spokesman Kristinn Hrafnsson would not discuss disagreements between Assange and other members of the organization. But as for the planned launch of a rival group, he said, "the more,the better."

"Well, I'm inclined not to talk too much about the people, the few people that have decided that their interest is not with WikiLeaks anymore," he told SVT. "What I hear is that some of the people are contemplating to open up their own website with the same ideal as WikiLeaks and I think that is an excellent idea and I wish them well."

Article (http://www.cnn.com/2010/TECH/web/12/12/wikileaks.rival/index.html)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Jarnhamar on December 13, 2010, 11:36:47
Let me get this straight.

Girl #1 asks guy to use a condom.
Guy says no.
Girl has consensual sex with guy anyways.


Girl #2 asks guy to use a condom.
Guy says no.
Girl has consensual sex with guy anyways.

Girl 1&2 upset afterwards and charge him with rape or whatever, only AFTER they find out he had sex with both of them?
Way to represent the gender ladies.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyVern on December 13, 2010, 12:01:44
Let me get this straight.

Girl #1 asks guy to use a condom.
Guy says no.
Girl has consensual sex with guy anyways.


Girl #2 asks guy to use a condom.
Guy says no.
Girl has consensual sex with guy anyways.

Girl 1&2 upset afterwards and charge him with rape or whatever, only AFTER they find out he had sex with both of them?
Way to represent the gender ladies.

Me thinks there is more to this story  (is that his story??) ... being that there's charges, arrest warrants, interpol involvement ...  ::)

But, way to represent the "it's always the victims fault" stoneage way of thinking.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Inky on December 13, 2010, 12:13:35
Let me get this straight.

Girl #1 asks guy to use a condom.
Guy says no.
Girl has consensual sex with guy anyways.


Girl #2 asks guy to use a condom.
Guy says no.
Girl has consensual sex with guy anyways.

Girl 1&2 upset afterwards and charge him with rape or whatever, only AFTER they find out he had sex with both of them?
Way to represent the gender ladies.

I don' think Grimaldus is blaming the victims here. You have to admit that the accusations are a bit sketchy. Both women had consensual sex with Assange and then retroactively decided it was rape. If this goes through, what next?

Women can simply decide Mr. X is a rapist because they've had a relationship with him and decide to exact revenge for some reason?
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on December 13, 2010, 12:15:40
OK, now in this case, and in this case ONLY, I'm backing idiot.
Quote
Another former WikiLeaks staffer said he had brought up his discontent with Assange, but that the WikiLeaks founder had not wanted to listen.
The belief that employers are obligated to fawn upon and grant every concern raised by an employee is a union-mentality delusion. If it's so traumatic that the boss won't listen to your "discontent," quit -- it's his company, not yours.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyVern on December 13, 2010, 12:22:56
Women can simply decide Mr. X is a rapist because they've had a relationship with him and decide to exact revenge for some reason?

I'm 99.99% posotive that if the above little quote from you was all there was to this ... that there wouldn't be an arrest warrant or interpol involvement. So, because there is that involvement ... I'm thinking that the other evidence not yet out there for public consumption will come out in court. I think you guys jumping to the "women exacting revenge" conclusion based upon selective publication of selective bits in the media is pretty lame ***.

If it doesn't (if there isn't anything else), then I'm guessing it'll be a not guilty. Let him have his day in court (and the women theirs) just like any other person would be entitled to before you pass your judgement on this being a simple "revenge" scenario.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Jarnhamar on December 13, 2010, 13:23:31


But, way to represent the "it's always the victims fault" stoneage way of thinking.

I've never suggested it's always the victims fault, thats silly Vern. My opinion is based off of comments such as this

Quote
In both cases, though, the women now accusing Assange of assault freely socialized with him after his alleged misconduct -- Sarah hosted him to a party at her apartment and let him stay there several nights, while Jessica went out to breakfast with him immediately after the incident of unprotected sex. Only three days after the two learned that Assange had had sex with each of them did they go to police.
........

I'll wait for their books to come out before I pass judgement I guess.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 13, 2010, 13:48:54
I'm blaming the lawyer ;D
Why ?
quote
 "a leading crusader for broadening Sweden's legal definition of rape so that more men can be successfully convicted."
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Fishbone Jones on December 13, 2010, 14:08:47
Why is it, especially at this site, that people who should know better continue to attempt drawing erudite conclusions based on the flawed reporting by our MSM journalistic hacks? Can't we just sit and wait until the court case happens? Once again, because of said speculation, we are drawing the thread off track, shifting the focus from the immediate idiot involved to some other overflogged item.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 13, 2010, 14:15:38
Why is it, especially at this site, that people who should know better continue to attempt drawing erudite conclusions based on the flawed reporting by our MSM journalistic hacks? Can't we just sit and wait until the court case happens?
Another case in point?
http://forums.milnet.ca/forums/index.php/topic,98038.0.html
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyVern on December 13, 2010, 14:26:51
I've never suggested it's always the victims fault, thats silly Vern. My opinion is based off of comments such as this
........

I'll wait for their books to come out before I pass judgement I guess.

Yep, and my comment to you was based on this extraneous bullshit:

...

Way to represent the gender ladies.

 ::) Sure sounds like a 'judgement' to me.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Fishbone Jones on December 13, 2010, 14:31:46
Take it to PMs everyone. Leave the thread intact for a change.

Milnet.ca Staff
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 13, 2010, 19:04:48
Even radical feminists think the charges against Assange are dubious and politically motivated. Ardin is now hiding out in the Palestinian Territories and is not communicating with authorities.

Here is one of the most famous feminists take on the situation, Naomi Wolf.

Quote
Julian Assange Captured by World's Dating Police

Dear Interpol:

As a longtime feminist activist, I have been overjoyed to discover your new commitment to engaging in global manhunts to arrest and prosecute men who behave like narcissistic jerks to women they are dating.

I see that Julian Assange is accused of having consensual sex with two women, in one case using a condom that broke. I understand, from the alleged victims' complaints to the media, that Assange is also accused of texting and tweeting in the taxi on the way to one of the women's apartments while on a date, and, disgustingly enough, 'reading stories about himself online' in the cab.

Both alleged victims are also upset that he began dating a second woman while still being in a relationship with the first. (Of course, as a feminist, I am also pleased that the alleged victims are using feminist-inspired rhetoric and law to assuage what appears to be personal injured feelings. That's what our brave suffragette foremothers intended!).

Thank you again, Interpol. I know you will now prioritize the global manhunt for 1.3 million guys I have heard similar complaints about personally in the US alone -- there is an entire fraternity at the University of Texas you need to arrest immediately. I also have firsthand information that John Smith in Providence, Rhode Island, went to a stag party -- with strippers! -- that his girlfriend wanted him to skip, and that Mark Levinson in Corvallis, Oregon, did not notice that his girlfriend got a really cute new haircut -- even though it was THREE INCHES SHORTER.

Terrorists. Go get 'em, Interpol!

Yours gratefully,

Naomi Wolf

Then she threw out a serious take on the issue.

Quote
J'Accuse: Sweden, Britain, and Interpol Insult Rape Victims Worldwide

How do I know that Interpol, Britain and Sweden's treatment of Julian Assange is a form of theater? Because I know what happens in rape accusations against men that don't involve the embarrassing of powerful governments.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is in solitary confinement in Wandsworth prison in advance of questioning on state charges of sexual molestation. Lots of people have opinions about the charges. But I increasingly believe that only those of us who have spent years working with rape and sexual assault survivors worldwide, and know the standard legal response to sex crime accusations, fully understand what a travesty this situation is against those who have to live through how sex crime charges are ordinarily handled -- and what a deep, even nauseating insult this situation is to survivors of rape and sexual assault worldwide.

Here is what I mean: men are pretty much never treated the way Assange is being treated in the face of sex crime charges.

I started working as a counselor in a UK center for victims of sexual assault in my mid-twenties. I also worked as a counselor in a battered women's shelter in the US, where sexual violence was often part of the pattern of abuse. I have since spent two decades traveling the world reporting on and interviewing survivors of sexual assault, and their advocates, in countries as diverse as Sierra Leone and Morocco, Norway and Holland, Israel and Jordan and the Occupied Territories, Bosnia and Croatia, Britain, Ireland and the united States.

I tell you this as a recorder of firsthand accounts. Tens of thousand of teenage girls were kidnapped at gunpoint and held as sex slaves in Sierra Leone during that country's civil war. They were tied to trees and to stakes in the ground and raped by dozens of soldiers at a time. Many of them were as young as twelve or thirteen. Their rapists are free.

I met a fifteen-year-old girl who risked her life to escape from her captor in the middle of the night, taking the baby that resulted from her rape by hundreds of men. She walked from Liberia to a refugee camp in Sierra Leone, barefoot and bleeding, living on roots in the bush. Her rapist, whose name she knows, is free.

Generals at every level instigated this country-wide sexual assault of a generation of girls. Their names are known. They are free. In Sierra Leone and Congo, rapists often used blunt or sharp objects to penetrate the vagina. Vaginal tears and injuries, called vaginal fistulas, are rampant, as any health worker in that region can attest, but medical care is often unavailable. So women who have been raped in this way often suffer from foul-smelling constant discharges from infections that could be treated with a low-cost antibiotic -- were one available. Because of their injuries, they are shunned by their communities and rejected by their husbands. Their rapists are free.

Women -- and girls -- are drugged, kidnapped and trafficked by the tens of thousands for the sex industry in Thailand and across Eastern Europe. They are held as virtual prisoners by pimps. If you interview the women who spend their lives trying to rescue and rehabilitate them, they attest to the fact that these women's kidnappers and rapists are well known to local and even national authorities -- but these men never face charges. These rapists are free.

In the Bosnian conflict, rape was a weapon of war. Women were imprisoned in barracks utilized for this purpose, and raped, again at gunpoint, for weeks at a time. They could not escape. Minimalist hearings after the conflict resulted in slap-on-the-wrist sentences for a handful of perpetrators. The vast majority of rapists, whose names are known, did not face charges. The military who condoned these assaults, whose names are known, are free.

Women who testify to having been raped in Saudi Arabia, Syria and Morocco face imprisonment and beatings, and being abandoned by their families. Their rapists almost never face charges and are free. Women who testify to rape in India and Pakistan have been subjected to honor killings and acid attacks. Their rapists almost never face charges, are almost never convicted. They are free. A well-known case of a high-born playboy in India who was accused of violently raping a waitress -- who was willing to testify against him -- resulted in a cover-up at the highest levels of the police inquiry. He is free.

What about more typical cases closer to home? In the Western countries such as Britain and Sweden, who are uniting to hold Assange without bail, if you actually interviewed women working in rape crisis centers, you will hear this: it is desperately hard to get a conviction for a sex crime, or even a serious hearing. Workers in rape crisis centers in the UK and Sweden will tell you that they have deep backlogs of women raped for years by fathers or stepfathers -- who can't get justice. Women raped by groups of young men who have been drinking, and thrown out of the backs of cars, or abandoned after a gang-rape in an alley -- who can't get justice. Women raped by acquaintances who can't get a serious hearing.

In the US I have heard from dozens of young women who have been drugged and raped in college campuses across the nation. There is almost inevitably a cover-up by the university -- guaranteed if their assailants are prominent athletes on campus, or affluent -- and their rapists are free. If it gets to police inquiry, it seldom gets very far. Date rape? Forget it. If a woman has been drinking, or has previously had consensual sex with her attacker, or if their is any ambiguity about the issue of consent, she almost never gets a serious hearing or real investigation.

If the rare middle-class woman who charges rape against a stranger -- for those inevitably are the few and rare cases that the state bothers to hear -- actually gets treated seriously by the legal system, she will nonetheless find inevitable hurdles to any kind of real hearing let alone real conviction: either a 'lack of witnesses' or problems with evidence, or else a discourse that even a clear assault is racked with ambiguity. If, even more rare, a man is actually convicted -- it will almost inevitably be a minimal sentence, insulting in its triviality, because no one wants to 'ruin the life' of a man, often a young man, who has 'made a mistake'. (The few exceptions tend to regard a predictable disparity of races -- black men do get convicted for assault on higher-status white women whom they do not know.)

In other words: Never in twenty-three years of reporting on and supporting victims of sexual assault around the world have I ever heard of a case of a man sought by two nations, and held in solitary confinement without bail in advance of being questioned -- for any alleged rape, even the most brutal or easily proven. In terms of a case involving the kinds of ambiguities and complexities of the alleged victims' complaints -- sex that began consensually that allegedly became non-consensual when dispute arose around a condom -- please find me, anywhere in the world, another man in prison today without bail on charges of anything comparable.

Of course 'No means No', even after consent has been given, whether you are male or female; and of course condoms should always be used if agreed upon. As my fifteen-year-old would say: Duh.

But for all the tens of thousands of women who have been kidnapped and raped, raped at gunpoint, gang-raped, raped with sharp objects, beaten and raped, raped as children, raped by acquaintances -- who are still awaiting the least whisper of justice -- the highly unusual reaction of Sweden and Britain to this situation is a slap in the face. It seems to send the message to women in the UK and Sweden that if you ever want anyone to take sex crime against you seriously, you had better be sure the man you accuse of wrongdoing has also happened to embarrass the most powerful government on earth.

Keep Assange in prison without bail until he is questioned, by all means, if we are suddenly in a real feminist worldwide epiphany about the seriousness of the issue of sex crime: but Interpol, Britain and Sweden must, if they are not to be guilty of hateful manipulation of a serious women's issue for cynical political purposes, imprison as well -- at once -- the hundreds of thousands of men in Britain, Sweden and around the world world who are accused in far less ambiguous terms of far graver forms of assault.

Anyone who works in supporting women who have been raped knows from this grossly disproportionate response that Britain and Sweden, surely under pressure from the US, are cynically using the serious issue of rape as a fig leaf to cover the shameful issue of mafioso-like global collusion in silencing dissent. That is not the State embracing feminism. That is the State pimping feminism.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 13, 2010, 20:40:41
WikiLeaks Spending Rises Dramatically to $500,000

Quote
WikiLeaks’ expenditures have risen dramatically from a paltry $38,000 between October 2009 and July 2010 to more than $495,000 in the last five months, according to a foundation that manages most of the organization’s donations.

The jump in expenses appears to be due to salaries the organization recently began paying staff members. WikiLeaks said in the past — before it began paying salaries — that its operating costs run only about $200,000 annually.

“Personnel costs are a relatively recent development,” Hendrik Fulda, vice president of the Berlin-based Wau Holland Foundation, told the German newspaper Der Spiegel. “WikiLeaks now pays some of its employees salaries. The staff members give the organization an invoice, and WikiLeaks hands them over to us.”

It’s not known how much WikiLeaks staffers earn, or how many staffers receive salaries — the organization is said to have only two or three staff members, but hundreds of volunteers. This information should be detailed in a financial report the Wau Holland Foundation is expected to release before the end of the year.

The report, which was supposed to be released in August, will be the first public disclosure of WikiLeaks’ finances. The organization, and founder Julian Assange, have been criticized by supporters and others for failing to provide a transparent accounting of donations and expenses. According to The Telegraph, the Wau Holland Foundation has recently been issued two official warnings by charity regulators in Germany for failing to file the required financial reports.

Fulda told Der Spiegel that the foundation has received about $1.2 million for WikiLeaks since it began accepting donations on the organization’s behalf in October 2009 via PayPal and direct bank transfers. WikiLeaks has now spent more than 370,000 euro ($495,000) of this money, Fulda said.

This is about 13 times the amount ($38,000) that Fulda reported had been spent for total WikiLeaks expenditures as of July.

However, of the nearly half-a-million dollars spent, WikiLeaks has authorized only $20,000 to go for the defense fund of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning. Manning, who is currently sitting in a U.S. Marine Corps base in Quantico, Virginia, is believed to be the source who provided WikiLeaks its most significant U.S. leaks, including a classified U.S. Army video of a 2007 Apache helicopter gunfight in Iraq, 250,000 U.S. State Department cables, and logs containing about 500,000 U.S. military files on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

According to Jeff Paterson, a spokesman for the Bradley Manning Defense Network, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had promised last July to “split” the expected $100,000 cost of Manning’s defense. Although WikiLeaks has never acknowledged that Manning was its source for classified information, the organization has aggressively sought donations from supporters for Manning’s defense.

ButPaterson revealed last week that five months after Assange’s cash pledge, WikiLeaks had still not made good on that promise. A WikiLeaks spokesman subsequently announced that $20,000 would be immediately released to Manning’s defense fund, less than half the amount Paterson had expected from the organization.

Fulda told Threat Level in July that WikiLeaks had raised $800,000 through PayPal and bank money transfers since last December, and that as of that month, the organization had spent only 30,000 euro ($38,000 then) from that funding. No money is paid out by the foundation unless it receives a receipt or an invoice for the request.

Most of the money came in before WikiLeaks began publishing the classified material believed to have come from Manning. Fulda told Der Spiegel that donations have been steady since the release of documents attributed to Manning.

“Every new publication by WikiLeaks has unleashed a wave of support, and donations were never as strong as now,” he said. “More than 80,000 euros ($107,000) was contributed in one week via PayPal alone.”

This donation channel got cut off last week, however, after WikiLeaks began publishing leaked U.S. State Department cables.

PayPal, Visa and MasterCard all blocked supporters from donating money to the organization via these avenues, though supporters can still donate through direct bank transfers or by mailing a check.

“We will have to see what impact the removal of PayPal has on our incoming funds,” Fulda said.

Although a bank account set up for Assange’s personal legal defense fund — to fight sex-crime allegations in Sweden — was canceled by a Swiss bank, the bank account for receiving donations to WikiLeaks is still open.

It’s not the first time that PayPal has frozen WikiLeaks’ account. The account was suspended in 2008 and in 2009.

“We suspended it temporarily in 2009 in accordance with European anti–money-laundering regulations, for reaching certain limits,” a PayPal spokesman told The Telegraph. “The account was reinstated when the foundation provided additional information.”

Article (http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/12/wikileaks-spending/)

$500,000 is quite a bit of money for an org that just copies and pastes whatever leaks people give them. We will soon see who's been lining their pockets.  >:D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 13, 2010, 20:46:26
Of course their costs have gone up.  With Julian and his 'bodyguards' gallivanting all over the world to keep one step ahead of assassins  ::) and government agencies, the expenses must be enormous.  I imagine a Timmies Double Double would not be good enough for him, so he would likely have to send out for some exotic java to placate his palate.    >:D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 13, 2010, 21:25:19
Of course their costs have gone up.  With Julian and his 'bodyguards' gallivanting all over the world to keep one step ahead of assassins  ::) and government agencies, the expenses must be enormous.  I imagine a Timmies Double Double would not be good enough for him, so he would likely have to send out for some exotic java to placate his palate.    >:D
Not to mention legal counsel.....
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 13, 2010, 22:01:29
On the other hand......


Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote
German Foundation on Funding WikiLeaks



'Donations Were Never as Strong as Now'


13/02/2010
SPIEGEL ONLINE

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,734318,00.html)


Even though key payment channels have been blocked, donations for WikiLeaks keep flowing in. Hendrick Fulda is a board member of Germany's Wau Holland Foundation, one of the whistleblowing platform's main funding channels. He spoke to SPIEGEL about WikiLeaks' internal finances, PayPal's recent payment block and how support for the organization is booming.

SPIEGEL: PayPal, Mastercard and Visa have stopped cash flows to WikiLeaks. Has it put you out of action?


Hendrik Fulda: No, it just means that we have lost one option for collecting donations. Of course, the option of paying via PayPal was very popular because it is so easy. It was much less effort than giving us money via a bank transfer -- a few clicks of the mouse was all you needed. We had twice as many donations through PayPal as through normal banks, but of course the conventional way of transferring money still works. The rumor that our bank account has been blocked is false. Our foundation doesn't handle Visa and Mastercard payments.

SPIEGEL: The Ebay subsidiary PayPal justified halting donations by saying that WikiLeaks supports illegal activities.

Fulda: That is far-fetched and we took legal steps against it. PayPal reacted quickly and released the frozen donations. The criticism is that WikiLeaks is possibly encouraging people to break the law. PayPal is explicitly calling that an opinion, but continues to cite its business terms and conditions. Our account remains blocked for new donations. If PayPal doesn't want to work with us any more, it will always find a reason. We see this chapter as finished -- end of story.

SPIEGEL: In response, hackers have targeted the websites of Mastercard and Visa, temporarily putting them out of action. What do you think about such attacks?

Fulda: We have nothing to say on that subject. We do not encourage people to take such action, nor do we have anything to do with it.

SPIEGEL: Has there been political pressure on the foundation not to work with WikiLeaks any more?

Fulda: The Kassel Regional Council and the tax office are responsible for us. I don't know what has been happening behind the scenes and whether the American authorities have exerted pressure on the German government. We haven't been put under any direct pressure.

SPIEGEL: How much money have you already collected in donations for WikiLeaks?

Fulda: Since October 2009, we have received a bit more than €900,000 ($1,2 million).

SPIEGEL: How much do people usually donate?

Fulda: People usually make small donations, the average is about €25. But we have also had a donation from one individual that was over €50,000.

SPIEGEL: How much money has been passed on to WikiLeaks?

Fulda: Up until now we've paid out over €370,000 to WikiLeaks.

SPIEGEL: One of the criticisms of WikiLeaks is that there is no transparency regarding its internal finances. How do you control how the donations are used?

Fulda: As a matter of principle, we only pay out when we get a receipt. That applies to travel costs, as well as hardware expenses, for example new computers, or infrastructure costs like Internet access. Personnel costs are a relatively recent development. WikiLeaks now pays some of its employees salaries. The staff members give the organization an invoice and WikiLeaks hands them over to us. Finally we also deal with campaigns and legal assistance, for example lawyers' costs. Nothing gets paid without a receipt.

SPIEGEL: Are the accusations true that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange flies business class and stays in expensive hotels?

Fulda: I haven't checked every single hotel but, based on the receipts I've seen, that is nonsense. Assange flies economy class and often stays with friends and acquaintances.

SPIEGEL: How have the donations fared since the latest batch of leaked diplomatic cables?


Fulda: Every new publication by WikiLeaks has unleashed a wave of support, and donations were never as strong as now. More than €80,000 was contributed in one week via PayPal alone. We will have to see what impact the removal of PayPal has on our incoming funds.

SPIEGEL: Are Assange's defence costs against the rape allegations financed with money which you administer?

Fulda: No, that would not be in keeping with the foundation's aim. We pay out money for WikiLeaks' work but not for private matters relating to any of its employees.

Interview conducted by Holger Stark

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 13, 2010, 22:07:50
Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote
WikiLeaks and Press Freedom



Is Treason a Civic Duty?


13/02/2010
A Commentary by Thomas Darnstädt
SPIEGEL ONLINE

LINK  (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,734321,00.html)

Since 9/11, press freedom in the West has come under attack as governments argue that national security is more important than transparency. But the hunt for WikiLeaks is a greater danger to democracy than any information that WikiLeaks might reveal.

Why do we need freedom of the press? The framers of the United States Constitution believed that such a guarantee would be unnecessary -- if not dangerous. There are freedoms that we don't secure through promises, but which we take for ourselves. They are like the air we breathe in a democracy, whose authority is built on public opinion. The democracy that was founded on the basis of such insights is the American democracy. It is an indication of the American revolutionaries' healthy mistrust in the power of this insight that they would later incorporate freedom of the press into the US Constitution after all.

Today, more than 200 years later, this old idea seems naïve to all too many people in the Western world. Since becoming embroiled in the war against terrorism, the US government has transformed itself into a huge security apparatus. The Washington Post recently reported that 854,000 people in the US government, or more than one-and-a-half times the population of Washington, DC, hold top-secret security clearances -- and this under a president who came into office promising a new era of openness in government. An estimated 16 million government documents a year are stamped "top secret," or not intended for the eyes of ordinary citizens.

In the crisis, the countries of Old Europe are also putting up the barricades. Germany's constitution, known as the Basic Law, has a far-reaching guarantee of press freedom and was created after World War II on behalf of the US liberators and in the spirit of the American and French revolutions. But in the 10th year after the 9/11 attacks, one German conservative politician has even pondered whether it might not be a good idea to prohibit journalists from reporting on terrorism in too much detail.

Such people would have been beheaded in revolutionary Paris and probably locked up in Philadelphia. When citizens were revolutionaries, the act of demanding freedom of speech was a revolutionary act. Today, in more peaceful times, we would characterize freedom of speech as a civic virtue.

Playing with Fire

But then along comes someone who is still playing the part of the revolutionary. Julian Assange, the founder of the whistleblowing platform WikiLeaks, is playing with the fire of anarchy. He is constantly threatening new, increasingly dangerous disclosures, which should indeed be of great concern to those affected. But the hatred he reaps in return is beneath all democracies.

In countries that have enshrined the right to free speech in their constitutions, it has until now been taken for granted that disclosures of confidential government information must be measured by the yardstick of the law. Disseminating real government secrets has always been against the law, including in Germany. The journalist Rudolf Augstein, SPIEGEL's founding father, paid for the mere suspicion of having exposed state secrets by spending 103 days in custody in 1962, in relation to a SPIEGEL cover story on the defense capabilities of the German military. But because the courts abided by the law, and freedom of the press was ultimately considered to be worth more than politicians' outrage, it wasn't the press but the government that felt the heat.

But for those who have it in for Assange, it's more a matter of principle than of enforcing the law. The loudmouth from Australia offers a welcome opportunity to finally cast off the old ideas of press freedom as a right that we grant ourselves instead of allowing others to grant it to us. Aren't we all at war? Isn't it the case that citizens must, in fact, protect the state instead of spying on it?

The trans-Atlantic coalition of protectors of the state includes such diverse participants as the chairman of the US Senate Committee on Homeland Security, Joe Lieberman, who accuses anyone who publishes secret US diplomatic cables of "bad citizenship," and German Green Party Chairman Cem Özdemir, who says that WikiLeaks has "crossed a line that isn't good for our democracy." The need to portray oneself as a good citizen is particularly strong among certain journalists. Even the Süddeutsche Zeitung, which normally takes civil rights very seriously, chides that the WikiLeaks disclosures "destroy politics, endanger people and can influence economies." American journalist Steve Coll, who was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his own exposés, rages against the activities of WikiLeaks, calling them "vandalism" and "subversion." The Washington Post, whose reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein once exposed the Watergate affair, describes WikiLeaks as a "criminal organization."

Dark Time for Freedom

To critics, the most threatening aspect of WikiLeaks' "criminal" activities must be the fact that, so far, no one has managed to find a law that these whistleblowers have actually broken. The US Justice Department's attempt to invoke the controversial Espionage Act of 1917 shows how helpless the protectors of the law are as they flip through their tomes. The period of World War I was a dark time for constitutional freedoms in the US. In its practically hysterical fear of communists and all other critics, the judiciary even prosecuted people who distributed flyers critical of military service, and in doing so ignored all constitutional guarantees.

Even the post 9/11 period wasn't quite as bad. In 2005, when the New York Times planned to publish a story about an illegal global wire-tapping program operated by the US National Security Agency (NSA), the paper's senior editors were summoned to the White House to meet with then Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. The most powerful government in the world was forced to resort to moral pressure. Apparently no one knew of any legal justification for the government to bar the Times from going to press. Of course, the newspaper did ultimately publish what it had learned. Nevertheless, America survived.

Or was it the other way around? Did America survive precisely because the New York Times published what it knew?

The Importance of Ethics

A few days ago, Congressional legal experts issued a report warning against dusting off the Espionage Act, arguing that it isn't quite that easy to apply the prohibition on disclosing secret government information to hostile powers to disclosures in the press.

The only remaining option is to challenge the right of Assange and his much-feared organization to claim protection under the Constitution as members of the press. Should every hurler of data be afforded the same political status as the New York Times or SPIEGEL? Isn't it true that what legitimizes the work of the press is the responsible handling of data, as well as the acts of considering the consequences, applying emphasis and explaining the material?

That's the way it should be. The ethics of journalism is what makes the products of the press credible to readers. This is just as applicable to SPIEGEL as it is to its counterparts in New York and Washington. In fact, it should apply to anyone who deals with sensitive data. However, a look at the beginning of the story shows that no one but citizens themselves -- that is, the readers -- can answer the question of whether the standards were adhered to. The worst penalty they can impose is to simply not read a newspaper or a collection of data on the Internet.

Are Citizens Permitted to Disclose State Secrets?

WikiLeaks is as much an intermediary for the public sphere as every newspaper and every website. For Berlin constitutional law expert Dieter Grimm, it is clear that the whistleblower website enjoys "the protections for freedom of the press under Germany's Basic Law." As a judge on the German Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe, Grimm played a very important role in shaping the current interpretation of freedom of opinion and freedom of the press in Germany. The Constitutional Court itself has consistently emphasized that the task of disseminating information in an unimpeded manner is "clearly essential" to the functioning of a democracy.

There is no good or bad public sphere, just as there is no such thing as a bit of a public sphere. According to the German Constitutional Court, it is only the full- fledged ability of all citizens to have access to all information, at least in principle, which makes the formation of public opinion possible. And it is the unobstructed formation of public opinion that makes it possible to view the outcome of elections as being representative of the will of the people.

Is the state permitted to keep secrets from its citizens? Are citizens permitted to disclose such secrets?

The answer to both questions is very simple: Yes.

State Has No Private Sphere

Naturally the government is permitted to have secrets. It is part of the prudent behavior of every civil servant to prepare decisions in confidence, so as to prevent unauthorized individuals from thwarting the desired outcome in advance. This is no less applicable to the planning of foreign ministers' conferences than to plans to apprehend terrorists.

That's why it is also part of the responsibility of all politicians, civil servants and judges to keep an eye on sensitive information, as the case arises. This is all the more important because the government cannot depend on being able to operate in legally protected darkness. The state's privacy, as such, is not legally protected, and the state, unlike its citizens, has no private sphere. The rights of citizens deserve protection, but the government's internal affairs do not.

Only one politician in Berlin, Christian Ahrendt, the legal policy spokesman for the liberal Free Democratic Party's parliamentary group, had the courage to put the unpopular truth into words: "If government agencies don't keep a close eye on their data, they can't hold the press responsible after the event."

This is the answer to the second question: Just as it is legitimate for the state to keep information secret, it is legitimate for the press to publish information it has succeeded in obtaining from the belly of the state.

The Quality of a Democracy

This is difficult to comprehend, even for interior ministers, which is why Germany needed, once again, a decision from the Constitutional Court explaining the difference between breach of secrecy and disclosure. When the editorial offices of the magazine Cicero were searched in 2005, with the approval of then Interior Minister Otto Schily, because the magazine had reported on a confidential Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) dossier, the investigators used a complicated argument to justify their charge against the editor responsible for the story. They argued that, although there is no specific law banning the publication of confidential official documents, it is a punishable offence for the BKA agents responsible for taking care of such documents to leak them. This meant that the journalist in question was an "accessory" to a punishable offence, if only by accepting the documents. And being an accessory to an offence is also an offence.

The Constitutional Court rejected this argument, noting once again the "absolutely essential importance" of press freedom for democracy. The press is allowed to print what it has obtained. With the very narrow exceptions in the realm of treason, this rule must apply in the press's handling of government secrets.

The case of Valerie Plame, the wife of an American diplomat who was exposed as a CIA agent by the syndicated columnist Robert Novak, shows that it is also firmly applied in the United States. It is a crime in both the United States and Germany to expose an agent of one's own government. But in the Plame case, reporters were only called to testify as witnesses. It was the government source, and not the reporters themselves, that was being prosecuted. Nevertheless, a journalist, Judith Miller, was arrested and spent three months in jail for refusing to reveal her sources. Even this sanction would be unthinkable in Germany, where journalists have the right to refuse to give evidence. Under the Basic Law, journalists, in the interest of the free disclosure of secrets, must even have the right to protect government sources.

In Germany, it was former Constitutional Court Judge Grimm who declared that a free press serves a constitutional purpose. This is not meant in a restrictive way, but entirely within the meaning of the framers of the US Constitution. If the state derives its democratic authority from citizens having comprehensive information, then providing information becomes a civic duty. And breach of secrecy becomes a mark of the quality of a democracy.

Translated from the German by Christopher Sultan

[/quote
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyRick on December 14, 2010, 06:46:39
They need to send Jack Bauer (24 series) after Julian Assange!  ;D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: E.R. Campbell on December 14, 2010, 07:18:52
Assange, although he appears, to me, to bit a bit of a smarmy character, is not the real villain of the piece.

The root of the problem lies in information mismanagement in Western governments: too much information that ought not to be classified is, and this creates a cycle of problems regarding both safekeeping and access. Most information is over-classified because:

1. Some (many?) staff officers - they are mostly officers but some are NCOs - are lazy. Properly classifying information is hard work. It is often just too quick and easy to make it all SECRET when little, if any, is anything except, maybe, RESTRICTED;

2. Some (many?) staff officers - they are mostly officers but some are NCOs - are incompetent. It takes some skill to properly classify information; and

3. Some (many?) staff officers - they are mostly officers but some are NCOs - are cowardly. They over-classify information in order to avoid answering hard questions. In my experience this is most likely to occur when a twenty-something political staffer comes out of his or her master's lair and says, "we want this kept secret, the minister doesn't want to have to answer questions about it." It is usually colonels who receive and, improperly, acquiesce to these requests. It's not easy, in fact it is sometimes very unpleasant, to say "no" to a minister's staff, but it is, sometimes, necessary.

Further compounding the problem is government parsimony. The key to good proper adequate information security is a registry. But registries require staff and we fired most of them about a dozen down-sizings ago.

The final part of the problem is that when there is too much classified information the wheat - the valuable information that should be shared between departments and groups - gets lost in all the chaff - the masses of improperly over-classified bumph. Then, as happened in the USA, some very high level boss says "Share!" and we end up with some kid, who - for various reasons -  probably should not have had a clearance, downloading the information because no one had the time to sift through all that information so they just dumped all of it, wheat and chaff alike, on to the SIPRNET.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 14, 2010, 09:40:34
WikiLeaks' Assange defiant as lawyers seek bail

LONDON - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has denounced the firms that suspended payments to his website as instruments of U.S. foreign policy and called for help in protecting his work from their "illegal and immoral attacks."

Ahead of a London court hearing on Tuesday at which Assange's lawyers will try to win his release on bail, he remained defiant, telling his mother from a British prison cell that he was committed to publishing more secret U.S. cables.

The 39-year-old Australian, whose website has provoked U.S. fury by publishing some of a trove of 250,000 classified U.S. diplomatic papers, is being held on allegations of sex crimes in Sweden, which he denies.

"My convictions are unfaltering. I remain true to the ideals I have expressed. This circumstance shall not shake them," Assange said, according to a written statement of his comments supplied to Australia's Network Seven by his mother Christine.

"We now know that Visa, Mastercard, Paypal and others are instruments of U.S. foreign policy," he said. "I am calling for the world to protect my work and my people from these illegal and immoral attacks."

Assange handed himself in to British police last week after Sweden issued a European arrest warrant.

He has rejected the allegations of sexual misconduct by two female Swedish WikiLeaks volunteers and opposes attempts by Swedish authorities to extradite him for questioning.

His lawyers are due to return to court in London later on Tuesday to make a new application for bail after Assange was remanded in custody at an initial hearing last week.

OPERATION PAYBACK

Internet activists launched "Operation Payback" last week to avenge WikiLeaks against those perceived to have obstructed its operations, temporarily bringing down the websites of credit card firms Visa V.N and MasterCard MA.N, as well as that of the Swedish government.

Assange's British lawyer, Mark Stephens, suggested however that Assange disagreed with the cyber attacks.

"When I told Julian about the cyber attacks . . . he said 'Look, I've been subject to cyber attacks. I believe in free speech, I don't believe in censorship and of course cyber attacks are just that'," he told Sky News on Tuesday.

Stephens said Assange was on "twenty-three-and-a-half hour lockdown" in prison.

"He is in isolation. He doesn't have access to newspapers or television or other news devices. He is not getting mail, he is subject to the pettiest forms of censorship," he said, adding that he expected a decision on bail by 1600 GMT.

Assange and his lawyers have voiced fears that U.S. prosecutors may be preparing to indict him for espionage over WikiLeaks' publication of the documents, which have embarrassed the United States and other countries.

The U.S. Justice Department has been looking into a range of criminal charges, including violations of the 1917 Espionage Act, that could be filed in the WikiLeaks case.

A ComRes poll of 2,000 Britons for CNN, published on Tuesday, found 44 per cent believed that the sex allegations against Assange were an excuse to get him into custody so the United States could prosecute him for releasing the secret papers. The same proportion believed Britain should send Assange to Sweden to face questioning.
article link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Assange+defiant+lawyers+seek+bail/3973693/story.html#ixzz185pIlyOS)

                       (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 14, 2010, 10:30:03
What's disturbing is that a guy charged with murdering his wife on their honeymoon in South Africa was granted bail, and Assange who is not even charged with any crimes was not.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 14, 2010, 11:24:20
What's disturbing is that a guy charged with murdering his wife on their honeymoon in South Africa was granted bail, and Assange who is not even charged with any crimes was not.
And in other news, a monkey rode a motorcycle in a circus in Moscow.  So what?  Mr. Assange was assessed by the magistrate to be a flight risk, and therefore did not grant him bail.  And you left out that the poor, innocent Mr. Assange is wanted in another country, and is to face an extradiction hearing.

I know nothing of this guy and his wife in South Africa, but this is just another indication of the Rand Corporation, in conjunction with the reverse vampires, under the direction of the saucer people, trying to hide "the truth", which is out there, no? ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 14, 2010, 11:48:55
Apparently the flight risk assessment has been altered.  He was granted bail, now for an extradition hearing to see there's even any merit to the allegations in Sweden.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 14, 2010, 12:03:04
Apparently the flight risk assessment has been altered.  He was granted bail, now for an extradition hearing to see there's even any merit to the allegations in Sweden.
And apparently there was great rejoicing.  ::)

Anyway you hack it, this guy is a slimeball.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Redeye on December 14, 2010, 16:31:16
Yeah.

But that doesn't mean he isn't entitled to due process of law.

And apparently there was great rejoicing.  ::)

Anyway you hack it, this guy is a slimeball.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Technoviking on December 14, 2010, 17:47:34
Yeah.

But that doesn't mean he isn't entitled to due process of law.
He got and continues to get his due process of law.

Still a slimeball.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on December 16, 2010, 12:19:34
Now, let's see if he returns for future extradition hearing sessions (http://ca.news.yahoo.com/wikileaks-founder-assange-back-court-fight-bail-20101216-005610-116.html).....
Quote
A U.K. judge has rejected an appeal and granted bail to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who will be freed from a British jail.

High Court justice Duncan Ouseley rejected prosecutors' argument that Assange should stay in prison and granted him conditional bail.

Assange has been in prison since Dec. 7 after surrendering to British police over a Swedish sex-crimes warrant.

He denies wrongdoing but is refusing to surrender to Sweden's request to extradite him for questioning ....
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on December 17, 2010, 17:48:06
Daniel Ellsberg is often compared to Assange. But not all leaks are good. Tyler Kent is a great example. He almost took America out of WW II. Worth watching the video of Kent talking about what happened. Just food for thought.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/adamcurtis/

Quote
WICKED LEAKS

Post categories: Back Stories

Adam Curtis | 13:47 UK time, Friday, 17 December 2010

Bradley Manning, the intelligence analyst who is alleged to have leaked the thousands of state department cables, has often been compared to Daniel Ellsberg who leaked the Pentagon Papers in 1971.

But I have stumbled on a film in the archives that tells the story of another leaker in America who tried to do the same thing, but even earlier.

He was a young State Department diplomat who stole and copied thousands of Top Secret cables. Like Daniel Ellsberg, his aim was to release them to stop America’s involvement in what he believed was a disastrous foreign war.

He was called Tyler Kent. He was a diplomat at the US embassy in London in 1940 and he wanted to stop President Roosevelt bringing America into the war to help Britain.

It is a fascinating story, but it also brings an odd perspective to the contemporary Wikileaks story.

Tyler Kent was a horrible man. He was a rabid anti-communist who believed that the Jews had been behind the Russian Revolution.

He was convinced that Germany should be allowed to destroy both Communist Russia and the Jews. And America should not get in the way of that being allowed to happen.

Looking back, most people now feel that Daniel Ellsberg was right in 1971 because the Vietnam War had become a horrible disaster that needed exposing.

Today, we are not sure of Bradley Manning’s motives (and it hasn't been proven that he is the source of the leak), but again there is a general feeling that it was good thing because the cables have exposed an empty nihilism at the heart of America’s foreign policy.

But the perspective the Tyler Kent story brings is the realisation that diplomatic leaks are not automatically a good thing. It just depends on who is using them. And why.

Back in the past Tyler Kent wanted to use secret information to destroy the things that the overwhelming majority of the British people believed in and were prepared to fight for.

Back in 1982, Robert Harris tracked Tyler Kent down. He was living in a caravan in a trailer park on the US-Mexico border. Harris persuaded Kent to be interviewed and then made a film for Newsnight that told the story.

It is a great piece of historical journalism. Kent explains how his aim was to release the secret cables during the Presidential election campaign in 1940. Over 80% of the US population didn’t want to go into the war – and the cables showed President Roosevelt secretly promising Churchill help against Germany.

Harris makes a powerful case in the film that if Kent had succeeded America would not have entered the war. And history would have been completely different.

Tyler Kent himself is weird and mesmerising. But still unrepentently anti-semitic.

And the film also shows just how easily Tyler Kent found willing accomplices in the heart of the British Establishment. They wanted to get rid of the Jews and communists too, even at the expense of their own country.

The film begins on the morning of the 20th May 1940. Churchill had been sending secret cables to Roosevelt begging for American help.

I also found a critique of Julian Assange's essays. This is fuel for an actual prosecution, not trumped up molestation charges that makes his case for him. He really doesn't sound like a journalist. My apologies if this is getting too cerebral.

https://zunguzungu.wordpress.com/2010/11/29/julian-assange-and-the-computer-conspiracy-%E2%80%9Cto-destroy-this-invisible-government%E2%80%9D/

Quote
    To radically shift regime behavior we must think clearly and boldly for if we have learned anything, it is that regimes do not want to be changed. We must think beyond those who have gone before us, and discover technological changes that embolden us with ways to act in which our forebears could not. Firstly we must understand what aspect of government or neocorporatist behavior we wish to change or remove. Secondly we must develop a way of thinking about this behavior that is strong enough carry us through the mire of politically distorted language, and into a position of clarity. Finally must use these insights to inspire within us and others a course of ennobling, and effective action.

    Julian Assange, “State and Terrorist Conspiracies”
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: garb811 on December 17, 2010, 21:53:20
From "The Gawker (http://gawker.com/)", so take it for what it is worth but it appears Mr Assange is a smooth talking devil with the ladies...or not.  Shared in accordance with the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

The Creepy, Lovesick Emails of Julian Assange (http://gawker.com/5714043/the-creepy-lovesick-emails-of-julian-assange?skyline=true&s=i)

Quote
Julian Assange, the founder of the world's most notorious secret-sharing operation, has some embarrassing documents in his own past. We've obtained a series of emails detailing his stalkery courtship of a teenager in his pre-Wikileaks days.

Elizabeth (not her real name) met Assange one night in April 2004, about two years before Assange started his now-infamous whistle-blowing website Wikileaks. She was 19 at the time; Assange was 33 and a student at the University of Melbourne studying physics and mathematics. Elizabeth spotted Assange at a bar near Melbourne and approached the older man with the long white hair because he seemed different than other guys she'd met.

...

Elizabeth doesn't remember how she responded and no longer has her reply, but it was probably dismissive because "I wasn't into him," she said.

She certainly didn't give him her phone number, which explains why she was shocked when Assange called the house where she lived with her parents the following day. The call went about as poorly as you might expect after Assange wouldn't tell Elizabeth how he got her number.

...

After a few more emails got him nowhere, Assange decided to change tack. Instead of calling Elizabeth, he would try to get Elizabeth to call him. But he chose probably the worst possible way to give her his phone number. Somehow, Elizabeth says, Assange figured out the make and license plate number of her car. Then he incorporated it into a riddle which, when solved, would reveal his phone number:

...


Copies of the alledged emails at link.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: hold_fast on December 18, 2010, 00:19:06
From "The Gawker (http://gawker.com/)", so take it for what it is worth but it appears Mr Assange is a smooth talking devil with the ladies...or not.  Shared in accordance with the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

The Creepy, Lovesick Emails of Julian Assange (http://gawker.com/5714043/the-creepy-lovesick-emails-of-julian-assange?skyline=true&s=i)

Copies of the alledged emails at link.

Anyone want to go ask some of my ex-flings how great our attempted courtship was?
With the upmost certainty, you can find some girl who I peeved off and wants to write a letter about how horrible I was at trying to get her to like me.

Drawing out relationship drama or flirting is ridiculous and, at best, gossip that belongs in the toilet paper rolls masquerading as legitimate weekly magazines (which can be found in your local supermarket aisle, often with headlines regarding "Batboy" or "John Travolta Cheats on Wife Again!").


As for Assange's bail - I'm happy he has received bail, considering that charges still have yet to be filed. Thank whatever God is out there for a judge with a head on his shoulders...
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyVern on December 18, 2010, 01:59:04
As for Assange's bail - I'm happy he has received bail, considering that charges still have yet to be filed. Thank whatever God is out there for a judge with a head on his shoulders...

Yeah, well considering that he was only wanted for questioning ... but chose to go underground instead ... he ends up arrested instead so that he is forced to go back to answer those questions.

Happens to shitloads of average people all the time ... he's not special.   ::)

 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 18, 2010, 04:22:40
Yeah, well considering that he was only wanted for questioning ... but chose to go underground instead ... he ends up arrested instead so that he is forced to go back to answer those questions.

Happens to shitloads of average people all the time ... he's not special.   ::)

Kinda makes you wonder what he's hiding when he's running away from questioning.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 18, 2010, 04:32:46
Bank of America says cuts off WikiLeaks

Quote
(Reuters) - WASHINGTON — Bank of America was quoted as saying late on Friday that it was joining other financial institutions in declining to process payments to WikiLeaks, which has angered U.S. authorities with the mass release of U.S. diplomatic cables.

"Bank of America joins in the actions previously announced by MasterCard, PayPal, Visa Europe and others and will not process transactions of any type that we have reason to believe are intended for WikiLeaks," the bank said in a statement, quoted by McClatchy Newspapers.

No one at Bank of America was immediately available to comment.

WikiLeaks has said it will release documents early next year that will point to "unethical practices" at a major U.S. bank, widely thought to be Bank of America.

Several companies have ended services to WikiLeaks after the website teamed up with major newspapers to publish thousands of secret U.S. diplomatic cables that have caused tension between Washington and some of its allies.

"This decision is based upon our reasonable belief that WikiLeaks may be engaged in activities that are, among other things, inconsistent with our internal policies for processing payments," the Bank of America statement added.

WikiLeaks later issued a message on Twitter urging its supporters to leave the bank.

"We ask that all people who love freedom close out their accounts at Bank of America," it said on the social networking medium.

"Does your business do business with Bank of America? Our advice is to place your funds somewhere safer," WikiLeaks said in a subsequent tweet.

In a backlash against organizations that have cut off WikiLeaks, cyber activists have been targeting companies seen as foes of the website.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was released on bail this week from a jail in Britain, where he is fighting extradition to Sweden over alleged sexual offenses.

Assange, a 39-year-old Australian, said on Friday that he was the target of an aggressive U.S. investigation and feared extradition to the United States was "increasingly likely."

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has said his government was considering using the U.S. Espionage Act, under which it is illegal to obtain national defense information for the purpose of harming the United States, as well as other laws to prosecute the release of sensitive government information by WikiLeaks.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ModlrMike on December 18, 2010, 12:57:40
Kinda makes you wonder what he's hiding when he's running away from questioning.


If he were truly interested in the truth, he would have presented himself for questioning right away and made a media event of it. To paraphrase his own words "The innocent have nothing to fear from the truth".
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ArmyVern on December 18, 2010, 13:00:44

If he were truly interested in the truth, he would have presented himself for questioning right away and made a media event of it. To paraphrase his own words "The innocent have nothing to fear from the truth".

And that is exactly it. Instead, he chose to go underground ... and now complains that authorities did what they have to do. He put himself in this situation by going underground - no one else did. He needs to look in the mirror if he wants someone to blame for his current plight-of-his-own-making.

 ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 18, 2010, 13:07:03
Oh!  But he never meant for the world to look at him under a microscope.  That just isn't how it works.  Julian can expose the world's secrets, but he is exempt any such scrutiny.  That is how it works in his slightly paranoid mind.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Jarnhamar on December 18, 2010, 13:10:53
Oh!  But he never meant for the world to look at him under a microscope.  That just isn't how it works.  Julian can expose the world's secrets, but he is exempt any such scrutiny.  That is how it works in his slightly paranoid mind.

Yea so true, but did we expect anything less?
No.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: garb811 on December 18, 2010, 14:43:45
Hold_Fast:  The point of course, is not the awkwardness of his attempted courtship (although that is the awkward style I would expect of a 16 year old, not a 33 year old man), the pursuit of a 19 year old by a 33 year old, his inability to take the hint or even an outright go away (again, actions I would expect of a besotted 14 year old with his first crush, not a 33 year old man) or even the areas that veer towards the realm of criminal harassment (such as obtaining her licence plate number after being told to stop calling her), rather it is to peel away the veil of secrecy he has built around him.  As GW pointed out, Assange's MO is to try to expose secrets while being exceptionally defensive of his own privacy and secrets.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on December 18, 2010, 20:41:47
Terry Glavin eviscerates the Michael Moore crowd, and the Guardian:

Wikileaks & Michael Moore: A Lesson In Propaganda And Mass Idiocy.  (lots of further links)
http://transmontanus.blogspot.com/2010/12/wikileaks-michael-moore-lesson-in.html

Quote
Today's artfully manufactured (if depressingly predictable) media rumpus, at the epicentre of which the pseudo-left blowhard and celebrity docudramatist Michael Moore is pleased to have successfully situated himself, casts an especially cold and helpful light on both the frivolous nature and the bourgeois-reactionary function of the cultural phenomenon known as Wikileaks.

To be fair, in its favour it is an amusing spectacle and goes well with popcorn. But by way of background, it is useful to recall a couple of things.

First: Moore's entreprenurial genius arises from the grand American tradition of circus empresario P.T. Barnum, who may or may not have been the source of the maxim "No one ever went broke understimating the intelligence of the American people," and to whom the phrase "A sucker is born every minute" may or may not be accurately attributed, but you get the point. Central to Moore's success was his invention of his own cirriculum vitae and his persistent talent for telling the masses of comfortable Europeans and North Americans who fancy themselves to be "progressive" exactly what they want to hear...

The fellow is certainly a dab hand at polemic.  While I make a more general point:

Torture by India: Once again WikiLeaks confirms the well-known
http://unambig.com/torture-by-india-once-again-wikileaks-confirms-the-well-known/

Quote
From a post November 17:

"Corruption? What stinking corruption? And what stinking torture?

…There’s a hell of a lot of willfully blinkered hypocrisy in Canada…

In fact we are so desperate to gain Indian favour–and business–that we even abandon our supposed principles on human rights…"

Now at Foreign Policy’s AfPak “Daily Brief”:

"…
 U.S. diplomatic cables released by the web site Wikileaks show that the International Committee of the Red Cross secretly briefed U.S. officials in 2005 about Indian security forces’ use of electrocution, beatings, and sexual humiliation against detainees in Indian-administered Kashmir..."

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: 57Chevy on December 19, 2010, 17:22:13
WikiLeaks' Julian Assange a 'high-tech terrorist': Joe Biden

 U.S. seeking legal pursuit of Australian hacker
article link (http://www.montrealgazette.com/entertainment/WikiLeaks+Julian+Assange+high+tech+terrorist+Biden/4000855/story.html#ixzz18av4yFkL)

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Justice Department is exploring a legal pursuit of Julian Assange, said Vice-President Joe Biden, who described the WikiLeaks founder as a dangerous "high-tech terrorist."

"We're looking at that right now," Biden told NBC's Sunday talk show Meet the Press, but the vice-president stopped short of elaborating on just how the administration could act against the head of the organization whose release of thousands of classified U.S. diplomatic cables has enraged Washington.

"I'm not going to comment on that process."

When asked whether he thought Assange was a high-tech terrorist or a whistleblower akin to those who released the Pentagon Papers - a series of top-secret documents revealing U.S. military policy in Vietnam - Biden was clear: "I would argue that it's closer to being high-tech terrorist."

Legal pressure has been been building steadily on WikiLeaks and Assange, who is in England fighting extradition to Sweden, where he faces sexual assault allegations.

Assange said Friday it looked "increasingly likely" that the U.S. would try to extradite him on charges related to the leaked cables.

A report by congressional researchers found the Espionage Act and other U.S. laws could be used to prosecute the 39-year-old Australian hacker, but there is no known precedent for prosecuting publishers in such a case.

A group of U.S. senators early this month introduced a bill to make it easier to target the self-described whistleblowing website by making it illegal to publish names of informants serving the U.S. military and intelligence community.

Media reports suggested that U.S. prosecutors are trying to build a case against Assange on the grounds that he encouraged U.S. Army Pte. Bradley Manning, currently in U.S. custody, to steal U.S. cables from a government computer and pass them to WikiLeaks.

Assange has denied knowing Manning. Biden appeared to leave the door open for charges against Assange.

"If he conspired to get these classified documents with a member of the U.S. military, that's fundamentally different than if somebody drops (documents) on your lap here, (saying) 'You're a press person, here is classified material.'"

In a legal case, the U.S. would seek to show Assange's responsibility for damage to national security, but legal experts have said the path to prosecution is strewn with legal complications, including constitutional free speech protections.

Biden insisted WikiLeaks "has done damage" through its documents dump.

"Look, this guy (Assange) has done things that have damaged and put in jeopardy the lives and occupations of people in other parts of the world," Biden said.

In particular, he acknowledged that among world leaders concerned over the leaks, "there is a desire now to meet with me alone rather than have staff in the room."

Photo:
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange "has done things that have damaged and put in jeopardy the lives and occupations of people in other parts of the world," U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden charged in an interview that aired Sunday.
Photograph by: William B. Plowman, Getty Images
                         (Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act)



Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: tomahawk6 on December 19, 2010, 19:54:12
Irony  ;D

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/lawyers-cry-foul-over-leak-of-julian-assange-sex-case-papers/story-e6frg6so-1225973548657

Quote
LAWYERS for Julian Assange have expressed anger about an alleged smear campaign against the Australian WikiLeaks founder.

Incriminating police files were published in the British newspaper that has used him as its source for hundreds of leaked US embassy cables.

In a move that surprised many of Mr Assange's closest supporters on Saturday, The Guardian newspaper published previously unseen police documents that accused Mr Assange in graphic detail of sexually assaulting two Swedish women. One witness is said to have stated: "Not only had it been the world's worst screw, it had also been violent."

Bjorn Hurtig, Mr Assange's Swedish lawyer, said he would lodge a formal complaint to the authorities and ask them to investigate how such sensitive police material leaked into the public domain. "It is with great concern that I hear about this because it puts Julian and his defence in a bad position," he told a colleague.

"I do not like the idea that Julian may be forced into a trial in the media. And I feel especially concerned that he will be presented with the evidence in his own language for the first time when reading the newspaper. I do not know who has given these documents to the media, but the purpose can only be one thing - trying to make Julian look bad."

Mr Assange is facing criminal allegations in Sweden over claims by two women that he sexually assaulted them while he was in the country earlier this year.

Another supporter close to the WikiLeaks founder said the leak appeared designed by the authorities in Sweden to jeopardise Mr Assange's defence. "There has been a selective smear through the disclosure of material. That material, in Swedish, was passed to a journalist at The Guardian," a source said. "The timing appears to have been cynically calculated to have the material published in the middle of the bail application and the appeal."

Mr Assange, 39, was arrested and held in custody at Wandsworth prison in south London after Sweden issued an extradition request. He was released on bail last week after a High Court judge dismissed an appeal by the British authorities, on behalf of the Swedes, to overturn an earlier decision to free him.

The Australian was told that he could walk free on a surety of £275,000 ($432,305). The money came from nine celebrity backers including Jemima Khan and Bianca Jagger.

In an editorial, The Guardian defended its decision to report on the incriminating police files. It said having been given access to the official papers, it had a duty to present a "brief summary" of the sex allegations against Mr Assange, together with his response.

Others were less enthused by The Guardian's treatment of its top source, pointing out that this is someone whom the newspaper has elevated into hero status as a campaigner for freedom of information. Some commentators point to the apparent hypocrisy of some of Mr Assange's supporters, such as the journalist John Pilger, bemoaning the Swedish police leaks, given their campaign for a man whose life is devoted to publishing confidential material. "Hoist by his own petard," said one observer.

Ever since the sex assault claims surfaced, Mr Assange has claimed that they are part of a conspiracy by the Swedes and the Americans to punish him for having masterminded the leak of the US cables. His lawyers, including Mark Stephens, are confident they can stop Mr Assange's extradition on both legal and human rights grounds. They point out that the offence of "minor rape", with which he may be charged, has no equivalent in British law because the accused can be guilty even if a woman consents.

A spokesman for The Guardian said: "Julian is not a confidential source. The argument that the papers involved with the WikiLeaks cables should not report criticism of him is one all journalists would find ridiculous."

The Sunday Times
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 19, 2010, 21:04:21
 ::)

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote


Montreal protesters rally in support of WikiLeaks


POSTMEDIA NEWS
18 Dec 2010

LINK  (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/life/Montreal+protesters+rally+support+WikiLeaks/3999493/story.html)


MONTREAL — Chanting “long live WikiLeaks” and “down with censorship,” about 35 protesters staged a small but noisy demonstration in downtown Montreal Saturday to show their support of the controversial whistle-blowing website.

“Attempts to censor are wrong,” said Nadim Kobeissi, a Concordia University student and one of the organizers of the protest. “The Internet is proving that it’s ridiculous to (try to) censor. But that doesn’t excuse that many governments around the world are attempting to hold journalists, messengers, for engaging in investigative journalism that is typical and legal.

“If you’re attempting to censor the Internet, what’s next? Are you going to censor The New York Times? Le Monde? El Pais?”

Kobeissi made headlines last week after deciding to create a mirror website for WikiLeaks after the original was shut down.

“There are now 2,000 (mirror sites),” he said proudly.

The protesters, carrying homemade placards and escorted by police vehicles, marched to the United States consulate, where they jeered the U.S. for imprisoning Bradley Manning, the U.S. armed forces computer expert who is charged with leaking confidential government information to the WikiLeaks site.

Montreal’s protest was held the same day as similar demonstrations in Ireland, the Netherlands and the U.S.

Further protests are planned in the coming days in Germany, Austria and Australia.

Montreal Gazette

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette




Nadim Kobeissi (http://forums.army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,97745.msg998414.html#msg998414) has been mentioned here before, and is easily searchable through Google, Bing, and other search engines. 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ModlrMike on December 19, 2010, 21:09:10
I wager these protesters would be first in line to hang any man other accused of these same crimes were he not St Julian.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on December 23, 2010, 17:04:05
 ;D

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.
Quote
This Just In

CIA responds to WikiLeaks: WTF


December 22nd, 2010
01:52 PM ET
CNN

LINK  (http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2010/12/22/cia-responds-to-wikileaks-wtf/?hpt=T2)

It's no secret that WikiLeaks' cable document dumps have caused ripples of concerns and speculation about how well the United States can keep secrets – its own and those of other countries.

It's been embarrassing to both U.S. diplomats and foreign leaders mentioned in the cables, but there haven't been any bombshells from the small percentage of documents released so far. The CIA, known for its ability to keep secrets, is taking no chances of being pulled further into the fray. The CIA has only been mentioned a few times in the cables, and has not been hit nearly as hard as other agencies and diplomats, but it does not appear willing to wait on the sidelines.

And it has an answer for WikiLeaks: WTF. Seriously.

In a move that couldn't be more ironic, and made for headlines such as the above, the CIA adopted a task force. And like all things involving the military, or secrecy, acronyms are huge. So when the CIA developed the WikiLeaks Task Force, naturally, it was likely thinking of the KISS method – Keep It Simple Stupid.

But in doing so, the CIA has proved it either has a really good sense of humor or was trying to send a snarky message, or perhaps someone at the agency just didn't think hard enough about the name choice.

"Officially, the panel is called the WikiLeaks Task Force," The Washington Post reports. "But at CIA headquarters, it's mainly known by its all-too-apt acronym: W.T.F."

OK, all jokes and obvious humor aside, the CIA is trying to do something real here – and that's to try and protect its reputation for secrecy.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and top aides had to start a new game plan – going to meet with foreign ministers, explaining, apologizing, cajoling and trying – to salvage relationships that she and the Obama administration had worked hard to establish. The State Department went into "war room" mode, pulling together an emergency round-the-clock team to handle the fallout.

So no doubt, the CIA is looking to make sure it won't be in the same situation.

"The director asked the task force to examine whether the latest release of WikiLeaks documents might affect the agency's foreign relationships or operations," CIA spokesman George Little told The Washington Post.

That's a high priority, officials told the paper. Because having any compromised informants really could lead to a real WTF situation – and not one the CIA or any government department would want on its hands.

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on December 28, 2010, 06:00:00
Assange book deal worth over $1M

Quote
An autobiography of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange that will be published in 2011 may bring its author more than $1 million US.

Assange told the Sunday Times he has signed a deal for $800,000 with Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Inc., and another deal for £325,000 ($505,000 Cdn) with British publisher Canongate.

The date of publication and the book's title have not been released.

The 39-year-old Australian computer expert said he agreed to the deal only because he was under financial pressure.

"I don't want to write this book, but I have to," he told the newspaper. He said the legal costs he has incurred fighting extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning about allegations of sexual misconduct, have reached more than $300,000 US.

"I need to defend myself and keep WikiLeaks afloat," he said.

Read more... (http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2010/12/27/assange-book-deal-knopf-wikileaks.html)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: GAP on December 30, 2010, 18:50:28
 Affidavit Details FBI "Operation Payback" Probe
4chan, "Anonymous" targeted over attacks on PayPal
Article Link (http://www.thesmokinggun.com/documents/internet/affidavit-details-fbi-operation-payback-probe)

DECEMBER 29--As part of an international criminal probe into computer attacks launched this month against perceived corporate enemies of WikiLeaks, the FBI has raided a Texas business and seized a computer server that investigators believe was used to launch a massive electronic attack on PayPal, The Smoking Gun has learned.

The FBI investigation began earlier this month after PayPal officials contacted agents and “reported that an Internet activist group using the names ‘4chan’ and “Anonymous” appeared to be organizing a distributed denial of service (“DDoS”) attack against the company,” according to an FBI affidavit excerpted here.

The PayPal assault was part of “Operation Payback,” an organized effort to attack firms that suspended or froze WikiLeaks’s accounts in the wake of the group’s publication of thousands of sensitive Department of State cables. As noted by the FBI, other targets of this “Anonymous” effort included Visa, Mastercard, Sarah Palin’s web site, and the Swedish prosecutor pursuing sex assault charges against Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder.

On December 9, PayPal investigators provided FBI agents with eight IP addresses that were hosting an “Anonymous” Internet Relay Chat (IRC) site that was being used to organize denial of service attacks. The unidentified administrators of this IRC “then acted as the command and control” of a botnet army of computers that was used to attack target web sites.

Federal investigators noted that “multiple, severe DDos attacks” had been launched against PayPal, and that the company’s blog had been knocked offline for several hours. These coordinated attacks, investigators allege, amount to felony violations of a federal law covering the “unauthorized and knowing transmission of code or commands resulting in intentional damage to a protected computer system.”

The nascent FBI probe, launched from the bureau’s San Francisco field office, has targeted at least two of those IP addresses, according to the affidavit sworn by Agent Allyn Lynd.

One IP address was initially traced to Host Europe, a Germany-based Internet service provider. A search warrant executed by the German Federal Criminal Police revealed that the “server at issue” belonged to a man from Herrlisheim, France. However, an analysis of the server showed that “root-level access” to the machine “appeared to come from an administrator logging in from” another IP address.

“Log files showed that the commands to execute the DDoS on PayPal actually came from” this IP, Agent Lynd reported. Two log entries cited in the affidavit include an identical message: “Good_night,_paypal_Sweet_dreams_from_AnonOPs.”

Investigators traced the IP address to Tailor Made Services, a Dallas firm providing “dedicated server hosting.” During a December 16 raid, agents copied two hard drives inside the targeted server. Court records do not detail what was found on those drives, nor whether the information led to a suspect or, perhaps, a continuing electronic trail. In a brief phone conversation, Lynd declined to answer questions about the ongoing denial of service probe.

Search warrant records indicate that agents were authorized to seize records and material relating to the DDoS attacks “or other illegal activities pertaining to the organization “Anonymous” or “4chan.”

A second IP address used by “Anonymous” was traced to an Internet service provider in British Columbia, Canada. Investigators with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police determined that the Canadian firm’s “virtual” server was actually housed at Hurricane Electric, a California firm offering “colocation, web hosting, dedicated servers, and Internet connections,” according to its web site.
More on link
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Thucydides on January 06, 2011, 01:29:09
Apparently Wikileaks is also revealing information that is not damagng to the United States, which is pretty embarrasing for the makers and keepers of "the narrative". Facts really get in the way of a good story....

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=40978

Quote
Media Slow To Show WikiLeaks Justified Iraq War
by James Zumwalt
01/05/2011
Trackback Link (Loading. . .)

While the media have been quick to run with WikiLeaks’ U.S. State Department cable releases to undermine Washington’s efforts to effect stability in unstable parts of the world, it is slow, if not silent, in giving credit where credit is due. Although other credible sources confirmed it before WikiLeaks did, in receiving similar disinterested responses from the media, it should be clear now that President Bush’s concerns about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction (WMD) program were well-founded.

The controversy goes back to Bush’s State of the Union address in January 2003. In the speech, he said the British government learned Saddam had "recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." This became one of several justifications leading to the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq two months later — and one about which, Bush critics later claimed, he lied.

British intelligence had determined an effort was made by Iraq to obtain "yellowcake" —  a uranium concentrate extracted from ores for use as material in higher-grade nuclear enrichment — from Niger. The waters separating fact from fiction over this allegation were muddied after various claims and counter-claims followed.

In July 2003, former U.S. career diplomat Ambassador Joe Wilson, in a New York Times op-ed, claimed he had been sent to Africa by the Bush Administration in 2002 — and had debunked the yellowcake claim. While Wilson reported he had met with a former Niger prime minister, who said he knew of no such sales, that prime minister also recalled a 1999 visit by the Iraqis seeking to buy yellowcake. Despite Wilson's claim, a 2004 bipartisan Senate intelligence committee report found his visit actually supported evidence Saddam was undertaking a WMD effort, based on the 1999 incident.

The 2003 Iraq invasion by U.S. forces also launched a massive effort to find WMDs. By late 2003, as determined in a review by a Wired Magazine editor of WikiLeaks documents on the issue, the Administration was losing faith WMDs would be found. But, as Wired reports, the WikiLeaks documents clearly show "for years afterward, U.S. troops continued to find chemical weapons labs, encounter insurgent specialists in toxins and uncover weapons of mass destruction. . . . Chemical weapons, especially, did not vanish from the Iraqi battlefield. Remnants of Saddam's toxic arsenal, largely destroyed after the Gulf War, remained. Jihadists, insurgents and foreign (possibly Iranian) agitators turned to these stockpiles during the Iraq conflict — and may have brewed up their own deadly agents."
 
A September 2004 New York Times op-ed by the former head of Saddam’s nuclear research program supported this, as well. He wrote:

"[T]he West never understood the delusional nature of Saddam Hussein’s mind . . . he lived in a fantasy world . . . .  giving lunatic orders . . . he kept the country’s Atomic Energy Commission alive . . . Saddam fooled  . . .  the world . . . .
  • ur nuclear program could have been reinstituted at the snap of Saddam Hussein’s fingers."

 
Of note too is a January 2004 revelation by Syrian journalist defector Nizar Nayuf. He reported there were three locations in Syria where Iraqi WMDs had been transported prior to the 2003 invasion and were being stored. He also revealed some of these sites were being built with North Korean cooperation. This explained why three years later Israel attacked a nuclear facility being built in Syria by Pyongyang — and Syria’s subsequent failure to criticize Israel for fear of drawing further international attention to what Damascus had been doing.

Five years after Joe Wilson’s op-ed claimed no yellowcake was sold to Iraq — the ease with which Saddam could have snapped his fingers and reinstituted his nuclear program became apparent. In July 2008, in an operation kept secret at the time, 37 military air cargo flights shipped more than 500 metric tons of yellowcake — found in Iraq — out of the country for further transport and remediation to Canada.
 
The U.S. government is committed to efforts to make the world a safer place by seeking the removal of WMD threats. One would think a press undermining that effort at the time under the guise of freedom of the press would feel an obligation to accurately report the success of such a governmental effort. This should especially be the case after those same media contributed to the false perception Saddam possessed no WMD capability and, therefore, never really posed a serious threat.
 
As evidenced by the WikiLeaks disclosures, apparently no such obligation is felt.

Lieutenant Colonel James Zumwalt is a retired Marine infantry officer who served in the Vietnam war, the 1989 intervention into Panama and Desert Storm. An author, speaker and business executive, he also currently heads a security consulting firm named after his father -- Admiral Zumwalt & Consultants, Inc. He has also been cited in numerous other books and publications for unique insights based on his research on the Vietnam war, North Korea (a country he has visited ten times and about which he is able to share some very telling observations) and Desert Storm.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: IBM on January 06, 2011, 17:53:31
Irony much?

http://www.boingboing.net/2011/01/05/vanity-fair-profiles.html (http://www.boingboing.net/2011/01/05/vanity-fair-profiles.html)

--- Begin article

Vanity Fair profiles Julian Assange: Wikileaks threatened to sue Guardian over leaked cables

Xeni Jardin at 10:02 PM Wednesday, Jan 5, 2011

    The partnership between The Guardian and WikiLeaks brought together two desperately ambitious organizations that happen to be diametric opposites in their approach to reporting the news. One of the oldest newspapers in the world, with strict and established journalistic standards, joined up with one of the newest in a breed of online muckrakers, with no standards at all except fealty to an ideal of "transparency"--that is, dumping raw material into the public square for people to pick over as they will. It is very likely that neither Alan Rusbridger nor Julian Assange fully understood the nature of the other's organization when they joined forces. The Guardian, like other media outlets, would come to see Assange as someone to be handled with kid gloves, or perhaps latex ones--too alluring to ignore, too tainted to unequivocally embrace.

No standards at all!

But among the more interesting revelations in this piece: at one point, VF reports that Assange threatened to sue The Guardian because he was upset that the newspaper secured an unauthorized copy of one leak "package" from a Wikileaks volunteer, and was considering breaking the embargo.

In other words: Wikileaks was going to sue The Guardian over a leak, because Assange believed he owned the content which had been leaked to him.

    Enraged that he had lost control, Assange unleashed his threat, arguing that he owned the information and had a financial interest in how and when it was released.

Go ahead and let that one sink in a minute.


--- End Article


Seems Assange is starting to look less and less like the saint he claims to be.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Thucydides on January 17, 2011, 12:03:15
A longer term look at the effects of the Wikileaks document dump:

http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/al-qaeda-wikileaks-and-the-war-on-terror/?singlepage=true

Quote
Al-Qaeda, Wikileaks, and the War on Terror
Why the Wikileaks document dump must now be considered a key American counterterrorism resource.
January 16, 2011 - by Brian Fairchild

Many news outlets have commented on the Wikileaks phenomenon, but none to my knowledge have commented on how the official classified State Department cables displayed on Wikileaks will aid al-Qaeda and other Islamic terrorist groups in their war against us, and how, in a bizarre twist of fate, these documents should now be considered a key American counterterrorism resource.

First it is important to put the quality of intelligence in perspective. Intelligence comes in various forms, such as conversations intercepted by human sources, communications intercepted through technical devices, via the reports of a spy, by the revelations of a defector, and on and on.

For all intelligence collectors, however, the Holy Grail is to recruit a source that can provide complete copies of official classified documents. I spent a career recruiting foreign spies who I pushed to provide me with this exact type of documentary intelligence, and this is precisely the kind of intelligence that PFC Bradley Manning provided to Julian Assange and Wikileaks.

To put the volume of intelligence displayed on Wikileaks in perspective, in the war on terror, every time we capture an al-Qaeda lap top computer that contains a couple hundred tactical documents, our officials declare that we’ve uncovered a “treasure trove” of intelligence that will severely impact al-Qaeda and be a boon to our understanding of how the organization operates.

Now compare this to the 260,000 official State Department cables revealing both tactical and strategic policies by documenting specific conversations between foreign leaders and senior American officials such as the president’s national security advisors and military leaders like General David Petraeus, and you get a perspective on this truly massive hemorrhage.

To put the damage into perspective, the leaked cables cover key American policies that span the entire world. If we take a sample, however, of just the cables that address the Middle East, we find an embassy assessment stating that we cannot win against al-Qaeda in Pakistan, the dangers posed by the Muslim Brotherhood, the cooperation between Shia Iran and Sunni terrorist groups, our plans, actions, and intentions to contain Iran, our Middle Eastern regional counterterrorism strategy, our plans to monitor al-Qaeda in Africa, the physical vulnerabilities of crucial energy nodes, and our fears that Pakistani nuclear material will fall into terrorist hands.

Having been an intelligence insider, I can assure you that our key competitors around the world such as Iran, Russia, North Korea, China, and the like, will have their ministries of foreign affairs and ministries of intelligence pore over and analyze these documents for years to come.

There is no doubt that al-Qaeda is already hard at work analyzing these cables, too, and, if it just limits its analysis to cables from the Muslim countries, it will be able to make its operations more secure and largely negate some of our communications interception techniques, it will uncover the physical vulnerabilities of strategic energy nodes, and it will obtain information that will provide content for its propaganda machine to discredit our government and our Middle Eastern partners.

I will guarantee that in the near future you will see some of these secret cables prominently referred to on al-Qaeda videos and displayed in al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’s new Inspire magazine, and they will be exploited by Salafi-Jihadi mosques and organizations throughout the world for some time to come.

In an ironic twist, these publicly available classified cables, once considered compartmented information that could only be shared with other American officials on a strict “need to know” basis, must now be considered a key American counterterrorism resource.

This is true because a standing counterintelligence requirement in the ongoing analysis of al-Qaeda is to understand what it knows about us and how that knowledge might enable it to protect itself from our operations, support its ideological narrative, and help it choose targets.

As unpleasant as it is, these cables, while still officially classified, are now completely and utterly in the public domain and are being studied by our key adversaries.  As a result, it is vital that our own counterterrorism institutions and officers conduct a robust damage assessment by reviewing these cables through the enemy’s eyes, if only to be forewarned about what our enemies know about us and how they might utilize this knowledge to their advantage.

Unfortunately, just the opposite appears to be true. On December 4, the Office of Management and Budget circulated a memo to all federal agencies prohibiting them from accessing the Wikileaks material, and the Defense Department issued a similar statement to its contractors and employees.

The OMB memo stated:

Except as authorized by their agencies and pursuant to agency procedures, federal employees or contractors shall not, while using computers or other devices (such as Blackberries or Smart Phones) that access the web on non-classified government systems, access documents that are marked classified (including classified documents publicly available on the WikiLeaks and other websites)…

This prohibition not only takes all federal counterterrorism personnel out of the loop, but, by extension, all state and local police counterterrorism personnel too.

Moreover, this memo has had a chilling effect even on non-governmental organizations.

According to a Washington Post article titled “OMB:  Wikileaks off-limits to federal workers without clearance,” Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs sent an email that “urged students not to post links to the documents or make comments on social media Web sites,” because “engaging in these activities would call into question your ability to deal with confidential information, which is part of most positions with the federal government….”

While it is reprehensible that these cables have been leaked, it is equally true that this particular genie cannot be put back into the bottle. If our counterterrorism officials are the only ones left in the dark, they will be put at a dangerous disadvantage vis-a-vis al-Qaeda and its associates, and our country will be less safe as a result.

Brian Fairchild served as a career Operations Officer in the Central Intelligence Agency's Clandestine Service with twenty years of experience operating under official and non-official cover. In 1998, he testified before Congress on counterterrorism issues, and he is currently the Director of Intelligence Operations for the Intrepid Group. Since 9/11, he has taught over ten thousand law enforcement officers, intelligence officials, and military personnel about the Muslim Brotherhood and the global Jihad movement. The Intrepid Group provides video tutorials on these subjects on its website and YouTube channel.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: MarkOttawa on January 30, 2011, 14:37:33
The inside NY Times story, an assessment, and more from the chief leaker:

Dealing With Assange and the WikiLeaks Secrets
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/30/magazine/30Wikileaks-t.html?ref=todayspaper

Quote
...
Bill Keller is the executive editor of The New York Times. This essay is adapted from his introduction to “Open Secrets: WikiLeaks, War and American Diplomacy: Complete and Expanded Coverage from The New York Times,” an ebook available for purchase at
http://nytimes.com/opensecrets .

WikiLeaks unplugged, by Doyle McManus
http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-mcmanus-column-wikileaks-20110130,0,5651051.column

Julian Assange: 'How do you attack an organisation? You attack its leadership'
As his court case looms, Julian Assange is facing a rising tide of hostility. In this exclusive interview he insists: 'We have not once, in four years of publishing, got it wrong'
http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/jan/30/julian-assange-interview?INTCMP=SRCH

Mark
Ottawa
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: HavokFour on January 31, 2011, 02:59:12
Bill Keller vs Wikileaks: Goodnight, Julian Assange, And Bad Luck (http://techcrunch.com/2011/01/30/bill-keller-vs-wikileaks-goodnight-julian-assange-and-bad-luck/)

 ;D
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on January 31, 2011, 11:14:05
Bill Keller vs Wikileaks: Goodnight, Julian Assange, And Bad Luck
Best line in the article:

As with the leaks themselves, there’s very little in Open Secrets that we didn’t already know. American diplomats sometimes lie. Jullian Assange is a dick. Bears crap in the woods.

 ;D

Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: George Wallace on February 03, 2011, 17:40:55
 :o   What is the world coming to?

Reproduced under the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.

Quote
Sync

WikiLeaks among nominees for Nobel Peace Prize

02/02/2011 11:32:59 AM
Wojciech Moskwa


LINK  (http://sync.sympatico.ca/news/wikileaks_among_nominees_for_nobel_peace_prize/3ace2172)

OSLO (Reuters) - Anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks has been nominated for the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize, the Norwegian politician behind the proposal said on Wednesday, a day after the deadline for nominations expired.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee accepts nominations for what many consider as the world's top accolade until February 1, although the five panel members have until the end of the month to make their own proposals.

Norwegian parliamentarian Snorre Valen said WikiLeaks was "one of the most important contributors to freedom of speech and transparency" in the 21st century.

"By disclosing information about corruption, human rights abuses and war crimes, WikiLeaks is a natural contender for the Nobel Peace Prize," Valen said.

Members of all national parliaments, professors of law or political science and previous winners are among those allowed to make nominations. The committee declined to comment on the WikiLeaks proposal or any other nominations.

Washington is furious at WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange for releasing tens of thousands of secret documents and diplomatic cables which it says have harmed U.S. interests abroad, including peace efforts.

Assange, An Australian, faces extradition to Sweden from Britain for questioning in a sex case which he and his supporters say is a smear campaign designed to close down WikiLeaks, a non-profit organization funded by the public and rights groups.

Awarding WikiLeaks the prize would be likely to provoke criticism of the Nobel Committee, which has courted controversy with its two most recent choices, jailed Chinese pro-democracy activist Liu Xiaobo and President Barack Obama a few months after his election.

NOBEL DEFINITION STRETCHED

The prize was endowed by Alfred Nobel, the Swedish inventor of dynamite, who said in his will it was to be awarded to whoever "shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses."

In past decades the committee, appointed by the Norwegian parliament, has stretched Nobel's definition to include human rights, climate activism and even micro-financing, which have been a source of criticism from Nobel traditionalists.

Nobel watchers say a prize for WikiLeaks would highlight the growing role of specialist Internet sites and broad access social media in bringing about world change.

Sites such as Twitter and YouTube have played important roles in mobilizing people in countries with a tight grip on official media, such as Egypt where mass anti-government protests have been taking place.

Kristian Berg Harpviken of the PRIO peace think tank in Oslo agreed that innovative use of "new tools for bringing about peace" could be a major theme in this year's Nobel, but he said he expected the prize to go to a woman after a series of male recipients.

His strongest tip was the Russian human rights group Memorial and its leader, Svetlana Gannushkina.

The nomination deadline may make it difficult for Middle East nominees should mass protests there produce peace.

Egypt's Mohamed ElBaradei won the prize in 2005 as head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. nuclear watchdog. Although theoretically possible, no individual has won the peace prize twice. The Red Cross has won three times.






 LINK  (http://sync.sympatico.ca/news/wikileaks_among_nominees_for_nobel_peace_prize/3ace2172)


Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: ModlrMike on February 03, 2011, 17:54:12
If Obama can get it after six weeks in office, why not Wikileaks?
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Journeyman on February 03, 2011, 18:12:56
If Obama can get it after six weeks in office, why not Wikileaks?
Because Assange is the wrong gender  ;)
Quote
..... he said he expected the prize to go to a woman after a series of male recipients.
(I guess the actual contribution is a secondary consideration)


I also thought that this was unfair:
Quote
The nomination deadline may make it difficult for Middle East nominees  should mass protests there produce peace.
They'll have to start killing their fellow Egyptians earlier in the year next time if they hope to get nominated -- because the logic of nominating people who "riot for peace" is as brilliant as "smashing Starbucks' windows to teach the G20 leaders a lesson."  ::)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: E.R. Campbell on February 03, 2011, 20:06:39
... because the logic of nominating people who "riot for peace" is as brilliant as "smashing Starbucks' windows to teach the G20 leaders a lesson."  ::)


Or:

(http://images7.cpcache.com/product/105604187v5_480x480_Front_Color-White.jpg)
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Nemo888 on May 02, 2011, 07:44:11
Feeling somewhat less sovereign after reading this. But then again Harper did just give them the run around and didn't pass anything.
http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/5765/125/
Wikileaks Cables Show Massive U.S. Effort to Establish Canadian DMCA
   PDF     | Print |     E-mail
Friday April 29, 2011
Wikileaks has released dozens of new U.S. cables that demonstrate years of behind the scenes lobbying by U.S. government officials to pressure Canada into implementing a Canadian DMCA. The cables include confirmation that Prime Minister Harper personally promised U.S. President George Bush at the SPP summit in Montebello, Quebec in 2008 that Canada would pass copyright legislation, U.S. government lines on copyright reform that include explicit support for DMCA-style digital lock rules, and the repeated use of the Special 301 process to "embarrass" Canada into action. In fact, cables even reveal Canadian officials encouraging the U.S. to maintain the pressure and disclosing confidential information.

This post highlights some of the key cables. An earlier post discussed confirmation that public pressure delayed the introduction of a copyright bill in 2008 and a parallel post focuses on the linkages between CRIA and the U.S. government lobbying effort.

Prime Minister Harper Promises Copyright Reform

The cables include clear confirmation that the copyright issue has escalated to the very top with Prime Minister Harper repeatedly seeking to assure the U.S. that Canada would pass copyright legislation consistent with their demands.  A 2008 cable notes "the Prime Minister told the President last August that Canada would pass copyright legislation." Moreover:

"senior GOC officials, especially Industry Minister Prentice, repeatedly assured the Ambassador and senior Mission Canada officers that the copyright bill would be introduced "soon."  Specifically, assurances were given that the legislation had been finalized and would be introduced prior to the Christmas recess, and then again immediately upon Parliament's return in January.  Neither of which occurred."

This came on the heels of an April 2007 letter from Harper to U.S. Ambassador David Wilkins promising action. U.S. officials were not impressed by the letter, noting that it seemed to justify inaction on the file.  The Harper letter was in response to a Wilkins letter seeking digital lock legislation within a month.

Canadian Officials Provide Inside Information

The cables also suggest that the U.S. is often privy to inside information on what is on the way. In the summer of 2007, U.S. officials met with Ailish Johnson from PCO, who revealed that "the mandate letters from the Prime Minister to the incoming Ministers of Industry [Prentice] and Canadian Heritage [Verner] charged both Ministers with introducing a copyright  reform bill before the end of the year." Let me repeat that - PCO told U.S. officials the content of the private mandate letters to two Ministers from the Prime Minister. At the same meeting, Johnson encouraged the U.S. to keep raising the issue, noting:

Both Johnson and Gray [of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce] said that U.S. Embassy  pressure has been helpful in moving this issue forward. They both also indicated that it would be helpful for the Embassy to continue to raise the issue with Canadian officials and  Members of Parliament, but said that public pressure from the Emabssy could be counter productive at this point.

U.S. Lobbying Pressure on Copyright

There are numerous cables that highlight U.S. strategies to pressure Canada on the copyright reform file.  In a June 2005 cable, the U.S. talks about the "need to engage the legislative branch as well as relevant departments", proposes creating a bi-lateral working group, and offers to conduct training sessions for Canadian officials. A June 2006 cable discusses meetings with Ministers Bernier and Oda. A March 2007 cable chronicles repeated meetings and attempts to elevate the issue as a top priority.

Another cable discusses a strategy with Canadian copyright lobby groups that would allow for a "good cop, bad cop" approach:

some industry associations plan to use the anticipated USG insistence on notice and takedown as a chance to play good cop to our bad cop, and they will present their acceptance of notice and notice as a signal to the GOC that they are willing to be "more reasonable than the Americans".

The cables show even the U.S. had a hard time taking Canadian claims of independence seriously. For example, when then Canadian Heritage Minister Bev Oda told the media that anti-camcording legislation was an independent policy change that was not the result of lobbying pressure from the U.S., a U.S. cable called her response "disingenuous."

The U.S. also admits that the case for digital locks isn't an easy one, noting in a cable that:

Efforts to encourage the GOC to ratify its WIPO obligations have been hindered by the sheer complexity of copyright law and IP-related issues, and perceptions by consumers and artists
that technological protection measures might be harmful.

U.S. on Bill C-60

The cables also confirm U.S. opposition to Bill C-60, the Liberal 2005 copyright bill.  The U.S. was displeased with a statement several months in advance of the bill that foreshadowed its content, particularly on digital locks and ISP liability. Once the bill was introduced, one cable  notes "faced with such a flawed document, some industry representatives are stuck hoping that the legislation, for which they pushed so long and hard, will die in committee." Another cable includes the U.S. embassy putting out the call for assistance, saying "to make the case for stronger rules in areas such as Internet Service Provider liability, please provide a clear USG reaction to the draft legislation for us to use in discussion with stakeholders, legislators, GOC agencies and the press."

U.S. on Bill C-61

In the months leading up to the introduction of the Conservative's Bill C-61, the U.S. also expressed concern with a new policy to give the House of Commons review of all international treaties (I raised this as an issue at the time). The Embassy notes:

Of more direct interest to the USG, the new procedures could complicate the government's efforts to bring Canadian law into compliance with the WIPO Internet treaties, which Canada signed in the late 1990's but has not yet ratified. It remains unresolved whether the WIPO treaties will have to be tabled in Parliament for the 21-sitting-days before the associated  copyright legislation is introduced.

After Bill C-61 was introduced, a cable noted the media coverage of the bill was generally negative and the bill was likely to die on the order paper.

U.S. on the 2009 Copyright Consultation

The U.S. took a very cynical view of the 2009 consultation on copyright with a cable titled "Copyright Reform in Canada: Day 4,235". Tanya Peatt, who has served as Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore lead advisor on copyright, told U.S. officials that the Canadian government was "conducting these consultations in part because of the heavy criticism for not
holding consultations over the last copyright bill." The Embassy was not confident that a bill would be introduced in 2009 (it wasn't with C-32 not introduced until June 2010).  The Embassy also sought speaking lines for its view on copyright, which include digital lock legislation to match the U.S. DMCA.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: PanaEng on May 02, 2011, 14:34:19
Not news anymore but: (shared according to law)
http://ca.news.yahoo.com/u-cables-dissect-canada-leaders-wikileaks-214206357.html (http://ca.news.yahoo.com/u-cables-dissect-canada-leaders-wikileaks-214206357.html)

Quote
Among the revelations included in the diplomatic documents are accounts of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s “vindictive pettiness,” Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff’s “lack of energy and hands-on leadership,” and New Democrat Leader Jack Layton’s “mouse of a party.”

Time for more trustworthy leaders I think.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: cupper on February 05, 2016, 20:29:34
Bumped for an update.

In what F'n world (other than the distorted UN commission's mind) would a person who voluntarily hides himself in another country's embassy be considered arbitrarily and illegally detained?  :facepalm:

Julian Assange is being 'arbitrarily held', UN panel to say

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-35490910

Quote
A UN panel will conclude Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is being "arbitrarily detained" in the UK, the Swedish foreign ministry has said.

Mr Assange, 44, claimed asylum in London's Ecuadorean embassy in 2012. He wants to avoid extradition to Sweden over a rape claim, which he denies.

The Met Police says Mr Assange will be arrested if he leaves the embassy.

Swedish prosecutors said the UN panel's decision would have "no formal impact" on its ongoing investigation.

Mr Assange earlier said his passport should be returned and his arrest warrant dropped if the UN panel, due to deliver its findings on Friday, ruled in his favour.

The Australian was originally arrested in London in 2010 under a European Arrest Warrant issued by Sweden over rape and sexual assault claims.

In 2012, while on bail, he claimed asylum inside the Ecuadorean embassy in Knightsbridge after the UK Supreme Court had ruled the extradition against him could go ahead.

Swedish prosecutors dropped two sex assault claims against Mr Assange last year. However, he still faces the more serious accusation of rape.

'Avoiding lawful arrest'

In 2014, Mr Assange complained to the UN that he was being "arbitrarily detained" as he could not leave the embassy without being arrested.

The application claimed Mr Assange had been "deprived of his liberty in an arbitrary manner for an unacceptable length of time".
The UN's Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has been investigating the issue.

The Press Association said key factors in the panel's decision would include the inability of Mr Assange to access political asylum, the fact he has never been charged, and changes to UK law and procedures since he arrived at the embassy.

Wikileaks earlier tweeted it was waiting for "official confirmation" of the UN panel's decision.

Downing Street said the panel's ruling would not be legally binding in the UK while a European Arrest Warrant remained in place.

"We have been consistently clear that Mr Assange has never been arbitrarily detained by the UK but is, in fact, voluntarily avoiding lawful arrest by choosing to remain in the Ecuadorean embassy," a spokesman said.

"The UK continues to have a legal obligation to extradite Mr Assange to Sweden."

The Swedish foreign ministry said in a statement that it noted the UN panel's decision "differs from that of the Swedish authorities".

The statement added the legal process for Mr Assange's case would be handled in court by Swedish prosecutors.

Mr Assange issued his statement on Twitter

Per Samuelsson, Mr Assange's lawyer, said Swedish authorities would be "morally" wrong to continue the investigation if the UN panel found in his favour.

"The ball is in Sweden's yard, in the prosecutor's yard. She is not formally bound by the decision by the UN, but morally it is very difficult to go against it."

The journalist John Pilger, who is a friend of Mr Assange, said "the ball is now at the feet of the British government", whose international legal "obligations" were represented by the UN panel.

"They did something in terms of supporting the tribunal in all the other celebrated cases, and Assange now joins them because the UN jurists have clearly found this is a case of arbitrary detention," he said.

Mr Assange's Wikileaks organisation posted secret American government documents on the internet, and he says Washington could seek his extradition to the US to face espionage charges if he is sent to Sweden.

In the statement, published earlier by Wikileaks on Twitter, Mr Assange said: "Should the UN announce tomorrow that I have lost my case against the United Kingdom and Sweden I shall exit the embassy at noon on Friday to accept arrest by British police as there is no meaningful prospect of further appeal.

"However, should I prevail and the state parties be found to have acted unlawfully, I expect the immediate return of my passport and the termination of further attempts to arrest me."

Last October, Scotland Yard said it would no longer station officers outside the Ecuador embassy following an operation which it said had cost £12.6m. But it said "a number of overt and covert tactics to arrest him" would still be deployed.

Julian Assange: Key dates
August 2010 - Swedish prosecutors issue an arrest warrant for Mr Assange
May 2012 - UK Supreme Court rules he should be extradited to Sweden to face questioning
June 2012 - Mr Assange claims asylum in the Ecuadorean embassy in London
September 2014 - Mr Assange submits complaint against Sweden and the UK to the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention
August 2015 - Swedish prosecutors drop their investigation into two allegations - one of sexual molestation and one of unlawful coercion - but say he still faces the more serious accusation of rape.
October 2015 - Met Police announce officers will no longer be stationed outside the Ecuadorean embassy
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: jollyjacktar on February 05, 2016, 21:08:04
And the POS is playing it up for all it's worth.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Flavus101 on February 05, 2016, 23:16:01
Continues to show how useful the UN is.

Who pumps money into something that has many of these "committees" that don't actually have any legal binding power.
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on April 11, 2019, 10:09:59
No other stand-alone thread I could find for Julian, so here's the latest ...

A bit more detail from the Wikileaks Twitter feed, as well as my editorial commentary, attached :)

* - Interesting coming from a guy living in a country where there may be freedom of expression, but not much freedom after expression.
** - More on Manning's saga in this Army.ca thread (https://army.ca/forums/index.php/topic,95541.0.html).

- op edit with newer info -
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: Dimsum on April 11, 2019, 11:12:16

* - Interesting coming from a guy living in a country where there may be freedom of expression, but not much freedom after expression.

Now how much would you wager Snowden is being...um..."coerced" into saying that? 
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: milnews.ca on April 11, 2019, 11:45:23
Now how much would you wager Snowden is being...um..."coerced" into saying that?
Tough call -- he IS a refugee in Russia, in asylum since 2013, one who's "helped" the Russian government (https://20committee.com/2016/07/02/the-kremlin-admits-snowden-is-a-russian-agent/), so maybe he just appreciates the freedom he has there.  For now, anyway ...
Title: Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
Post by: mariomike on February 19, 2020, 19:53:44
In the news,

Quote
The Guardian

19 Feb., 2020

Donald Trump 'offered Julian Assange a pardon if he denied Russia link to hack'

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2020/feb/19/donald-trump-offered-julian-assange-pardon-russia-hack-wikileaks

Donald Trump offered Julian Assange a pardon if he would say Russia was not involved in leaking Democratic party emails, a court in London has been told.