Tag Archives: Julian Assange

Freedom Where Did You Go? by Paul Craig Roberts

Your freedom is gone to government surveillance, social media data gathering, and the rule of men and women replacing the rule of law. From Paul Craig Roberts at paulcraigroberts.org:

My Generation is the last one to have known privacy and to have lived out most of our lives in freedom.

I remember when driving licenses did not have photos and most certainly not fingerprints. A driving license was issued on proof of birth date alone.

Prior to the appearance of automobiles IDs did not exist in democratic nations. You were who you said you were.

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An Online Vigil in Defense of Julian Assange With Daniel Ellsberg, Craig Murray, Bill Binney and Ray McGovern

One of the more important issues hanging over the world right now is the fate of Julian Assange. From consortiumnews.com:

Joe Lauria, editor-in-chief of Consortium News, on Saturday helped moderate a daylong chain of interviews in defense of WikiLeaks and its publisher Julian Assange, including a discussion with Daniel Ellsberg. 

#Unity4J online vigil was held on Saturday to defend the WikiLeaks editor-in-chief, whose sanctuary at the Ecuadorian embassy in London has turned into torturous solitary confinement.

Among the participants on Saturday were Craig Murray, a former U.K. ambassador; Nat Parry, son of Consortium New’s founder and first editor, Robert Parry; Bill Binney, former technical director at the National Security Agency, and Ray McGovern, a former CIA officer. Joe Lauria interviewed Daniel Ellsberg, the Pentagon Papers whistleblower and author of The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner. 

The entire 11 hour and 45 minute event can be viewed here:

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Unity for Assange’s Plight Is Necessary To Build a Movement for Democracy, by Nozomi Hayase

There have been some fissures in Wikileaks. From Nozomi Hayase at antiwar.com:

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange remains in solitary confinement inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he was granted asylum in 2012 against the threat of extradition to the United States for his publishing activities. In recent months, Ecuador’s President Lenin Moreno, under pressure from the U.S. began threatening to evict this political refugee.

In response to this dire situation, people across the political spectrum began to form solidarity through #Unify4J, an online platform to organize a social media movement in support of Assange. Among those include prominent Trump’s supporters. In the midst of Trump administration’s draconian measures on immigrants and empowerment of white supremacist groups, the idea of working with Trump’s key allies triggered reaction among the left. Recently, Classconscious.org, an outlet spearheading global civic action for Assange’s freedom, scrutinized the idea of uniting with ultra-right forces that back Trump and urged the movement to draw a line.

Strife around the same issue arose from the former associate and early proponents of WikiLeaks. Barrett Brown, an award-winning journalist, previously imprisoned for charges relating to a Stratfor hack, has been one of the strong voices in support of the whistleblowing site. He described how he has long stood up for the organization’s mission of transparency at great risk to himself, yet in recent months he became upset about what he perceived to be Assange’s alliance with fascists and radical right supremacist groups.

Brown, who recently launched the project Pursuance, an open source software that allows individuals to share information and organize, has ramped up criticism toward Assange in his most vulnerable time. This created the conflict with the Courage Foundation, an organization that provides assistance for whistleblowers. Courage was co-founded by Assange and it has both WikiLeaks and Brown as beneficiaries. According to the article on the Daily Beast, three of Courage’s trustees reportedly instructed Courage’s respected director Naomi Colvin to cut off Brown as some kind of retaliation against his hostile remarks toward Assange. This led to the unfortunate resignation of Colvin, who was forced to walk out from the organization as a matter of principle for her opposition to exclude anyone based on political speech.

To continue reading: Unity for Assange’s Plight Is Necessary To Build a Movement for Democracy

Former MI6 spy v WikiLeaks editor: Who really deserves 1st Amendment protection? by Annie Machon

Christopher Steele, a British citizen, is protected in the US by the First Amendment, but Julian Assange, a citizen of Ecuador and Australia, is probably not. From Annie Machon at rt.com:

If ‘Dirty Dossier’ author Christopher Steele deserves protection under the 1st Amendment but WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange doesn’t, then the concept of a free press is merely a distant memory.

While it is all too easy to become frustrated and annoyed by what passes for news in the legacy media these days, thisarticle in the Daily Mail did arouse my particular ire earlier this week – and in this instance no particular blame attaches to the newspaper, it is simply reporting some unpalatable facts.

The gist of it is that former British MI6 intelligence officer and current mercenary spy-for-hire, Christopher Steele, author of the discredited ‘Dirty Dossier’ about Donald Trump, has been accorded First Amendment rights in a court case in the USA.

You might wonder why this article caused me so much spluttering annoyance over my breakfast? Steele’s treatment is in marked contrast to that accorded to WikiLeaks Publisher and Editor-in-Chief, Julian Assange, and the hypocrisy is breathtaking. Allow me to expound.

Steele is a British intelligence officer of pretty much my vintage. According to what is available publicly, he worked for MI6, the British overseas intelligence gathering agency, for 22 years, serving in Russia in the early ’90s and in Paris at the end of that decade – around the time that MI5 whistleblower, David Shayler, wasimprisoned in that city pending a failed extradition case to the UK. It is probable that Steele would have been monitoring us then.

After being outed as an MI6 officer in 1999 by his former colleague, Richard Tomlinson, he was pretty much desk-bound in London until he resigned in 2009 to set up, in the inimitable way of so many former spooks, a private consultancy that can provide plausibly deniable services to corporations and perhaps their former employers.

Steele established just such a mercenary spy outfit, Orbis Business Intelligence, with another ex-colleague Chris Burrows in 2009. Orbis made its name in exposing corruption at the heart of FIFA in 2015 and was thereafter approached as an out-sourced partner by Fusion GPS – the company initially hired to dig dirt on presidential candidate Trump in 2016 by one of his Republican rivals and which then went on to dig up dirt on behalf of Hillary Clinton’s DNC.

To continue reading: Former MI6 spy v WikiLeaks editor: Who really deserves 1st Amendment protection?

Julian Assange’s Mother: Seth Rich Was DNC Leaker, by Sean Adl-Tabatabai

It would surprise nobody who has been paying attention if this turned out to be true. From Sean All-Tabatabai at yournewswire.com:

Julian Assange's mother tells press that Seth Rich was DNC leaker

The mother of Julian Assange claims murdered DNC staffer Seth Rich was the person behind the leaked DNC emails, not Russia. 

In a tweet sent Thursday, Mrs. Christine Assange slammed the media for failing to adequately report on the corruption within the Democratic party and Hillary Clinton campaign during the 2016 election.

In the tweet, Mrs. Assange claims WikiLeaks’ release of the DNC emails helped expose Hillary Clinton’s numerous misdeeds, including the rigging of the 2016 primaries against Bernie Sanders. The release of the emails, she claims, put a target on her son’s back.

“Its the duty of media to inform citizens about corruption,” she began.

“A DNC Bernie supporter [Seth Rich] disgruntled with rigging leaked docs proving corruption. What should Wikileaks should have done? Hold on to them till after the election to advantage Hillary?” 

“You are shooting the messenger!” Its the duty of media to inform citizens about corruption

A #DNC #Bernie supporter disgruntled with rigging leaked docs proving corruption

What should Wikileaks should have done?

Hold on to them till after the election to advantage #Hillary?

You are shooting the messenger! https://t.co/Hqdtnrvnnx

— Mrs. Christine Assange (@AssangeMrs) August 16, 2018

Mrs. Assange is referring to the fact that Seth Rich, a Bernie supporter, was likely frustrated with the blatant primary rigging against Bernie Sanders in 2016.

WikiLeaks has repeatedly denied that Russian hackers had anything to do with the leaked Clinton and Podesta emails.

In an interview with the Daily Mail in 2016, Wikileaks envoy Craig Murray told the newspaperthat Seth Rich was “frustrated with the DNC rigging the Democratic primaries against Sanders” and decided to take matters into his own hands and leak the emails.

“Neither of the leaks came from the Russians,” Murray said. “The source had legal access to the information. The documents came from inside leaks, not hacks.”

The Shape of Trump to Come, by Raúl Ilargi Meijer

Trump will strike back. From Raúl Ilargi Meijer at theautomaticearth.com:

I thought I’d make list of things we can expect to emanate from the White House over the coming year or so. I’m sure you will agree, wherever you stand on the political roller coaster, that there’s little chance things are going to be boring going forward. Here goes:

Trump will end the ‘monopolies’ of Facebook, Google, Twitter et al. The intelligence community will hate this, but they already hate him anyway, so why bother? And besides, it’s the only thing to do that makes any sense. The AT&T model might be useful, essentially creating Baby Bells, though the international reach of the companies may add a layer or two of complications.

But you simply can’t have a few roomfuls of boys and girls ban and shadowban people with impunity from networks that span the globe and reach half of the world’s population on the basis of opaque ‘Terms and Conditions’ that in effect trump the US constitution the way they are used and interpreted. Whether they are private companies or not will make no difference in the end.

At some point an ‘entity’ becomes a ‘utility’. Twitter and Facebook already are the most efficient way to alert people in cases of emergency. To throw people out of such systems is indefensible.

The CIA and FBI will protest like there’s no tomorrow, but they have to realize that spying on Americans the way they do at present in conjunction with Alphabet and Facebook is just as indefensible as throwing people off these services. The judicial system will at some point be forced to curtail these powers. Better for the executive power to be ahead of that. Baby Bells it is.

Trump will tell his people to open up to Mueller . He’s already done this, but will do it again, loudly and publicly, citing the need to wrap up the Mueller investigation ASAP. That will be the target: stop the ‘inquisition’. Mueller has talked for 30 hours over the past nine months to White House lawyer Donald McGahn II, and at some point enough is enough.

To continue reading: The Shape of Trump to Come

Free The Press, from Raúl Ilargi Meijer

For grandstanding hypocrisy its hard to beat the 300 newspapers that published editorials deploring President Trump’s attacks on the press. How many of those 300 have lifted an editorial finger to help Julian Assange or Edward Snowden? From Raúl Ilargi Meijer at theautomaticearth.com:

Two thirds of Americans want the Mueller investigation (inquisition, someone called it) over by the midterm elections. Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani has said that if Mueller wants to interview Trump, he’ll have to do so before September 1, because the Trump camp doesn’t want to be the one to unduly influence the elections. Mueller himself appears to lean towards prolonging the case, and that may well be with an eye on doing exactly that.

And there’s something else as well: as soon as the investigation wraps up, Trump will demand a second special counsel, this time to scrutinize the role the ‘other side’ has played in the 2016 presidential election and its aftermath. He’s determined to get it, and he’ll fire both Jeff Sessions and Rod Rosenstein if they try to stand in his way.

There have of course been tons of signs that it’s going to happen, but we got two significant ones just the past few days. The first is the termination of John Brennan’s security clearance. It looks impossible that no additional clearances will be revoked. There are more people who have them but would also be part of a second special counsel’s investigation. That doesn’t rhyme.

The second sign is Senator Rand Paul’s call for immunity for Julian Assange to come talk to the US senate about what he knows about Russian involvement in the 2016 election. Obviously, we know that he denies its very existence, and has offered to provide evidence to that end. But before he could do that, a potential deal with the DOJ to do so was torpedoed by then FBI chief James Comey and Senator Mark Warner.

Both will also be part of the second investigation. Rand Paul’s motivation is simple: Assange’s testimony could be a very significant part of the process of figuring out what actually happened. And that should be what everybody in Washington wants. Question is if they all really do. That’s -ostensibly- why there is the first, the Mueller Russian collusion, investigation. Truth finding.

To continue reading: Free The Press