Author Topic: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread  (Read 82954 times)

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #75 on: December 05, 2010, 14:00:54 »
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

Offline hold_fast

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #76 on: December 05, 2010, 15:46:17 »
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 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.

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #77 on: December 05, 2010, 15:56:39 »
Consider the source of this article:
- James D. Catlin is a Melbourne barrister who acted for Assange in London earlier this year
So, there I was....

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #78 on: December 05, 2010, 18:38:51 »
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
 
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
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Offline George Wallace

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #79 on: December 05, 2010, 19:23:57 »
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

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




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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #80 on: December 05, 2010, 19:49:40 »
I think that Mercedes Stephenson nailed it.  Well done to her.
So, there I was....

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #81 on: December 05, 2010, 19:52:34 »
trying to get the best ratings out of each release:

I can see this turning into the Wikileaks superthread ;D

Offline hold_fast

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #82 on: December 06, 2010, 01:13:08 »
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

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #83 on: December 06, 2010, 01:52:12 »
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.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2010, 01:55:01 by ArmyVern »
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Offline hold_fast

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #84 on: December 06, 2010, 02:53:22 »
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. 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).

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #85 on: December 06, 2010, 02:55:01 »
I think that Mercedes Stephenson nailed it.  Well done to her.

+1
Tommy is retired now so he can say any opinion he darned well pleases so long as it stays within the forum guidelines :D

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #86 on: December 06, 2010, 09:30:40 »
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.
 

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #87 on: December 06, 2010, 09:59:39 »
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 institution.  Doesn't make me perfect, of course, but it does make me careful.   Anyway, in the interest of fair play, consider this site 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.



So, there I was....

Offline GAP

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #88 on: December 06, 2010, 10:05:11 »
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

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
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Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #89 on: December 06, 2010, 12:49:24 »
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/

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #90 on: December 06, 2010, 14:36:01 »
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



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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #91 on: December 06, 2010, 14:53:56 »
Quote
...described Mr. Assange as a “homeless refugee”
  ::)

Offline hold_fast

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #92 on: December 06, 2010, 15:08:09 »
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.

Also found it interesting that many media organizations are no longer using the term 'whistle-blower' to describe WikiLeaks.

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #93 on: December 06, 2010, 15:26:12 »
...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
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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #94 on: December 06, 2010, 15:44:56 »
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

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.

Offline hold_fast

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #95 on: December 06, 2010, 15:59:15 »
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.

Offline Michael O'Leary

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #96 on: December 06, 2010, 16:11:22 »
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?


aesop081

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #97 on: December 06, 2010, 16:14:37 »
Also, the op-ed piece above made me puke in my mouth.

Why ? Everything said is right on target.

Offline HavokFour

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #98 on: December 06, 2010, 16:18:07 »
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.
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." — Edmund Burke

aesop081

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Re: Wikileaks and Julian Assange Mega-thread
« Reply #99 on: December 06, 2010, 16:19:00 »
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.