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Thread: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Here is a just released interview of Consortium News with KimDotCom about the DNC leak, Seth Rich and Wikileaks. It’s 2 and half hours so I have not watched the whole thing yet.

    Here is KimDotKom’s tweet:
    Quote Kim Dotcom
    @KimDotcom
    Here's my first and only interview about Seth Rich and how the DNC leaks really happened. With commentary from former technical director of the NSA, Bill Binney. Russia has always been a hoax. The US deep state created Guccifer 2.0.

    Quote Featuring Kim Dotcom, William Binney, Mike Gravel, and George Szamuely.

    Consortium News launched its first live show, CN Live!, on July 12, 2019 at 2pm EDT, to provide weekly insights into WikiLeaks, the Middle East, the US presidential elections and other topics in the news.

    Hosted by Joe Lauria, Elizabeth Vos.
    Executive producer, Cathy Vogan.
    Technical production, Ebon Kim
    Update:

    This medium article includes a transcript of KimDotCom’s part of the video above:
    https://medium.com/@garymlord/who-ki...y-f30601790a36
    Last edited by Cara; 4th August 2019 at 05:22.
    *I have loved the stars too dearly to be fearful of the night*

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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    The World’s Most Important Political Prisoner 6

    by craig
    15 Sep, 2019

    We are now just one week away from the end of Julian Assange’s uniquely lengthy imprisonment for bail violation. He will receive parole from the rest of that sentence, but will continued to be imprisoned on remand awaiting his hearing on extradition to the USA – a process which could last several years.

    At that point, all the excuses for Assange’s imprisonment which so-called leftists and liberals in the UK have hidden behind will evaporate. There are no charges and no active investigation in Sweden, where the “evidence” disintegrated at the first whiff of critical scrutiny. He is no longer imprisoned for “jumping bail”. The sole reason for his incarceration will be the publshing of the Afghan and Iraq war logs leaked by Chelsea Manning, with their evidence of wrongdoing and multiple war crimes.

    In imprisoning Assange for bail violation, the UK was in clear defiance of the judgement of the UN Working Group on arbitrary Detention, which stated
    Under international law, pre-trial detention must be only imposed in limited instances. Detention during investigations must be even more limited, especially in the absence of any charge. The Swedish investigations have been closed for over 18 months now, and the only ground remaining for Mr. Assange’s continued deprivation of liberty is a bail violation in the UK, which is, objectively, a minor offense that cannot post facto justify the more than 6 years confinement that he has been subjected to since he sought asylum in the Embassy of Ecuador. Mr. Assange should be able to exercise his right to freedom of movement in an unhindered manner, in accordance with the human rights conventions the UK has ratified,
    In repudiating the UNWGAD the UK has undermined an important pillar of international law, and one it had always supported in hundreds of other decisions. The mainstream media has entirely failed to note that the UNWGAD called for the release of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe – a source of potentially valuable international pressure on Iran which the UK has made worthless by its own refusal to comply with the UN over the Assange case. Iran simply replies “if you do not respect the UNWGAD then why should we?”

    It is in fact a key indication of media/government collusion that the British media, which reports regularly at every pretext on the Zaghari-Ratcliffe case to further its anti-Iranian government agenda, failed to report at all the UNWGAD call for her release – because of the desire to deny the UN body credibility in the case of Julian Assange.

    In applying for political asylum, Assange was entering a different and higher legal process which is an internationally recognised right. A very high percentage of dissident political prisoners worldwide are imprisoned on ostensibly unrelated criminal charges with which the authorities fit them up. Many a dissident has been given asylum in these circumstances. Assange did not go into hiding – his whereabouts were extremely well known. The simple characterisation of this as “absconding” by district judge Vanessa Baraitser is a farce of justice – and like the UK’s repudiation of the UNWGAD report, is an attitude that authoritarian regimes will be delighted to repeat towards dissidents worldwide

    Her decision to commit Assange to continuing jail pending his extradition hearing was excessively cruel given the serious health problems he has encountered in Belmarsh.

    It is worth noting that Baraitser’s claim that Assange had a “history of absconding in these proceedings” – and I have already disposed of “absconding” as wildly inappropriate – is inaccurate in that “these proceedings” are entirely new and relate to the US extradition request and nothing but the US extradition request. Assange has been imprisoned throughout the period of “these proceedings” and has certainly not absconded. The government and media have an interest in conflating “these proceedings” with the previous risible allegations from Sweden and the subsequent conviction for bail violation, but we need to untangle this malicious conflation. We have to make plain that Assange is now held for publishing and only for publishing. That a judge should conflate them is disgusting. Vanessa Baraitser is a disgrace.

    Assange has been demonised by the media as a dangerous, insanitary and crazed criminal, which could not be further from the truth. It is worth reminding ourselves that Assange has never been convicted of anything but missing police bail.

    So now we have a right wing government in the UK with scant concern for democracy, and in particular we have the most far right extremist as Home Secretary of modern times. Assange is now, plainly and without argument, a political prisoner. He is not in jail for bail-jumping. He is not in jail for sexual allegations. He is in jail for publishing official secrets, and for nothing else. The UK now has the world’s most famous political prisoner, and there are no rational grounds to deny that fact. Who will take a stand against authoritarianism and for the freedom to publish?

    ——————————————
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  5. Link to Post #103
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    This article from Spanish newspaper El Pais looks into the surveillance - by a Spanish security firm, at the behest of the USA - of Assange while he was in the Ecuadorean embassy.

    Quote Spanish security company spied on Julian Assange in London for the United States
    Spain’s High Court is investigating the director of UC Global S. L. and the activities of his company, which had been hired to protect the Ecuadorian embassy in the English capital

    José María Irujo 27 SEP 2019 - 00:37 CEST

    Undercover Global S. L., the Spanish defense and private security company that was charged with protecting the Ecuadorian embassy in London during the long stay there of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, spied on the cyberactivist for the US intelligence service. That’s according to statements and documents to which EL PAÍS have had access. David Morales, the owner of the company, supposedly handed over audio and video to the CIA of the meetings Assange held with his lawyers and collaborators. Morales is being investigated for this activity by Spain’s High Court, the Audiencia Nacional.

    The judicial investigation into the director of UC Global S. L. and the activities of his company were ordered by a judge named José de la Mata, and they began weeks after EL PAÍS published videos, audios and reports that show how the company spied on the meetings that the cyberactivist held in the embassy.

    The secret probe is the consequence of a criminal complaint filed by Assange himself, in which he accuses Morales and the company of the alleged offenses involving violations of his privacy and the secrecy of his client-attorney privileges, as well as misappropriation, bribery and money laundering. The director of UC Global S. L. has not responded to calls from this newspaper in order to confirm his version of events.

    Morales, a former member of the military who is on leave of absence, stated both verbally and in writing to a number of his employees that, despite having been hired by the government of then-Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa, he also worked “for the Americans,” to whom he allegedly sent documents, videos and audios of the meetings that the Australian activist held in the embassy. “We are playing in another league. This is the first division,” he told his closest colleagues after attending a security fair in the US city of Las Vegas in 2015 where he supposedly made his first American contacts.


    Video: Footage of Julian Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

    Despite the fact that the Spanish firm – which is headquartered in the southern city of Jerez de la Frontera – was hired by Senain, the Ecuadorian intelligence services, Morales called on his employees several times to keep his relationship with the US intelligence services a secret.

    The owner of UC Global S. L. ordered a meeting between the head of the Ecuadorian secret service, Rommy Vallejo, and Assange to be spied on, at a time when they were planning the exit of Assange from the Ecuadorian embassy using a diplomatic passport in order to take him to another country. This initiative was eventually rejected by Assange on the basis that he considered it to be “a defeat,” that would fuel conspiracy theories, according to sources close to the company consulted by this newspaper.

    The meeting took place on December 21, 2017 in the meeting room of the diplomatic building and was recorded both on video and audio by cameras installed by Morales’ employees. A small number of people, among whom were the Australian’s lawyers, were aware of the plan. Hours after the meeting, the US ambassador informed the Ecuadorian authorities about the plan, and the next day, December 22, the US put out an international arrest warrant for Assange.

    “It is absurd to spy on who has hired you if you are not going to hand that material over to another country,” said a source close to UC Global S. L. This newspaper has had access to the video and the audio of the aforementioned meeting.

    Cameras and external access for the US

    After the installation of new video cameras at the beginning of December 2017, Morales requested that his technicians install an external streaming access point in the same area so that all of the recordings could be accessed instantly by the United States. To do this, he requested three channels for access: “one for Ecuador, another for us and another for X,” according to mails sent at the time to his colleagues. When one of the technicians asked to contact “the Americans” to explain the way that they should access some of the spying systems installed in the embassy, Morales would always be evasive with his answers.

    Morales ordered his workers to install microphones in the embassy’s fire extinguishers and also in the women’s bathroom, where Assange’s lawyers, including the Spaniard Aitor Martínez and his closest collaborators, would meet for fear of being spied on. The cyberactivist’s meetings with his lawyers, Melynda Taylor, Jennifer Robinson and Baltasar Garzón, were also monitored.

    The UC Global S. L. team was also ordered by its boss to install stickers that prevented the windows of the rooms that the WikiLeaks founder used from vibrating, allegedly to make it easier for the CIA to record conversations with their laser microphones. They also took a used diaper that from a baby that was on occasions taken to visit the activist in order to determine if the child was his by a close collaborator.

    The former military man also planted microphones in a number of decorative elements inside the embassy, which were photographed for their reproduction in Spain. He also wanted to install them in the room used by “the guest,” as Assange was referred to in his reports, but some of his workers, concerned over the illegality of these jobs, warned him that they could be discovered. “The WikiLeaks founder was obsessed with being spied on,” a former employee of the company said.

    The spying on Assange increased after Lenin Moreno came to power in Ecuador. At that time, Morales regularly flew to New York and Washington, this newspaper has managed to confirm. Among the UC Global S. L. client list is Sheldon Adelson and his gaming company Las Vegas Sands. For years the Spanish company has been providing security for the business magnate’s yacht when it is in Mediterranean waters. This job is usually carried out personally by Morales himself.

    Adelson has a close friendship with US President Donald Trump and is one of the main donors to the Republican Party. Among his security personnel is a former CIA chief. In 2018 an investigation by The New York Times revealed that Julian Assange became a target for CIA spying under the mandate of former director Mike Pompeo. Official sources admitted to the US newspaper that WikiLeaks was being investigated in search of alleged links between its founder and Russian intelligence.

    Spying under the mandate of Lenin Moreno

    The espionage against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange increased under the government of the current Ecuadorian president, Lenin Moreno, who recently handed Assange over to the British authorities. The Ecuadorian government has denied these accusations and instead accuses Assange of having created a “spying center” in the embassy.

    Rafael Correa, Moreno’s predecessor in the role, was the person who offered the Australian refuge in his country’s London embassy and granted him nationality. In July of this year the owner of UC Global S. L. declined to respond to this newspaper about the alleged spying on Julian Assange. “I cannot comment on anything that we did there, I can’t give any details,” he said via telephone. “We have our ethical and moral rules and none of them were violated.”

    David Morales, a former member of the military, created his company in 2008 inspired by Blackwater, the US private security multinational that supported the US army in a number of conflicts including those in Afghanistan and Iraq. One of the first contracts that his company secured was to provide security in Europe for two of Rafael Correa’s daughters during his time in office. He later secured the contract for providing security at the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

    In April, the government of Lenin Moreno expelled Assange from that embassy, where he had been living since 2012. After his expulsion and arrest by the British authorities, the United Kingdom authorized the judicial process to hand the WikiLeaks founder over to the US justice system. The US wants Assange extradited and is leveling 18 charges, including computer misuse and the unauthorized disclosure of national defense information regarding the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The cyberactivist could be facing a sentence of up to 175 years in prison.
    From: https://elpais.com/elpais/2019/09/25...mpression=true
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    Default Re: Julian Assange arrested after Ecuador tears up asylum deal

    Assange in Court

    by craig
    22 Oct, 2019 in Uncategorized

    I was deeply shaken while witnessing yesterday’s events in Westminster Magistrates Court. Every decision was railroaded through over the scarcely heard arguments and objections of Assange’s legal team, by a magistrate who barely pretended to be listening.

    Before I get on to the blatant lack of fair process, the first thing I must note was Julian’s condition. I was badly shocked by just how much weight my friend has lost, by the speed his hair has receded and by the appearance of premature and vastly accelerated ageing. He has a pronounced limp I have never seen before. Since his arrest he has lost over 15 kg in weight.

    But his physical appearance was not as shocking as his mental deterioration. When asked to give his name and date of birth, he struggled visibly over several seconds to recall both. I will come to the important content of his statement at the end of proceedings in due course, but his difficulty in making it was very evident; it was a real struggle for him to articulate the words and focus his train of thought.

    Until yesterday I had always been quietly sceptical of those who claimed that Julian’s treatment amounted to torture – even of Nils Melzer, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture – and sceptical of those who suggested he may be subject to debilitating drug treatments. But having attended the trials in Uzbekistan of several victims of extreme torture, and having worked with survivors from Sierra Leone and elsewhere, I can tell you that yesterday changed my mind entirely and Julian exhibited exactly the symptoms of a torture victim brought blinking into the light, particularly in terms of disorientation, confusion, and the real struggle to assert free will through the fog of learned helplessness.

    I had been even more sceptical of those who claimed, as a senior member of his legal team did to me on Sunday night, that they were worried that Julian might not live to the end of the extradition process. I now find myself not only believing it, but haunted by the thought. Everybody in that court yesterday saw that one of the greatest journalists and most important dissidents of our times is being tortured to death by the state, before our eyes. To see my friend, the most articulate man, the fastest thinker, I have ever known, reduced to that shambling and incoherent wreck, was unbearable. Yet the agents of the state, particularly the callous magistrate Vanessa Baraitser, were not just prepared but eager to be a part of this bloodsport. She actually told him that if he were incapable of following proceedings, then his lawyers could explain what had happened to him later. The question of why a man who, by the very charges against him, was acknowledged to be highly intelligent and competent, had been reduced by the state to somebody incapable of following court proceedings, gave her not a millisecond of concern.

    The charge against Julian is very specific; conspiring with Chelsea Manning to publish the Iraq War logs, the Afghanistan war logs and the State Department cables. The charges are nothing to do with Sweden, nothing to do with sex, and nothing to do with the 2016 US election; a simple clarification the mainstream media appears incapable of understanding.

    The purpose of yesterday’s hearing was case management; to determine the timetable for the extradition proceedings. The key points at issue were that Julian’s defence was requesting more time to prepare their evidence; and arguing that political offences were specifically excluded from the extradition treaty. There should, they argued, therefore be a preliminary hearing to determine whether the extradition treaty applied at all.

    The reasons given by Assange’s defence team for more time to prepare were both compelling and startling. They had very limited access to their client in jail and had not been permitted to hand him any documents about the case until one week ago. He had also only just been given limited computer access, and all his relevant records and materials had been seized from the Ecuadorean Embassy by the US Government; he had no access to his own materials for the purpose of preparing his defence.

    Furthermore, the defence argued, they were in touch with the Spanish courts about a very important and relevant legal case in Madrid which would provide vital evidence. It showed that the CIA had been directly ordering spying on Julian in the Embassy through a Spanish company, UC Global, contracted to provide security there. Crucially this included spying on privileged conversations between Assange and his lawyers discussing his defence against these extradition proceedings, which had been in train in the USA since 2010. In any normal process, that fact would in itself be sufficient to have the extradition proceedings dismissed. Incidentally I learnt on Sunday that the Spanish material produced in court, which had been commissioned by the CIA, specifically includes high resolution video coverage of Julian and I discussing various matters.

    The evidence to the Spanish court also included a CIA plot to kidnap Assange, which went to the US authorities’ attitude to lawfulness in his case and the treatment he might expect in the United States. Julian’s team explained that the Spanish legal process was happening now and the evidence from it would be extremely important, but it might not be finished and thus the evidence not fully validated and available in time for the current proposed timetable for the Assange extradition hearings.

    For the prosecution, James Lewis QC stated that the government strongly opposed any delay being given for the defence to prepare, and strongly opposed any separate consideration of the question of whether the charge was a political offence excluded by the extradition treaty. Baraitser took her cue from Lewis and stated categorically that the date for the extradition hearing, 25 February, could not be changed. She was open to changes in dates for submission of evidence and responses before this, and called a ten minute recess for the prosecution and defence to agree these steps.

    What happened next was very instructive. There were five representatives of the US government present (initially three, and two more arrived in the course of the hearing), seated at desks behind the lawyers in court. The prosecution lawyers immediately went into huddle with the US representatives, then went outside the courtroom with them, to decide how to respond on the dates.

    After the recess the defence team stated they could not, in their professional opinion, adequately prepare if the hearing date were kept to February, but within Baraitser’s instruction to do so they nevertheless outlined a proposed timetable on delivery of evidence. In responding to this, Lewis’ junior counsel scurried to the back of the court to consult the Americans again while Lewis actually told the judge he was “taking instructions from those behind”. It is important to note that as he said this, it was not the UK Attorney-General’s office who were being consulted but the US Embassy. Lewis received his American instructions and agreed that the defence might have two months to prepare their evidence (they had said they needed an absolute minimum of three) but the February hearing date may not be moved. Baraitser gave a ruling agreeing everything Lewis had said.

    At this stage it was unclear why we were sitting through this farce. The US government was dictating its instructions to Lewis, who was relaying those instructions to Baraitser, who was ruling them as her legal decision. The charade might as well have been cut and the US government simply sat on the bench to control the whole process. Nobody could sit there and believe they were in any part of a genuine legal process or that Baraitser was giving a moment’s consideration to the arguments of the defence. Her facial expressions on the few occasions she looked at the defence ranged from contempt through boredom to sarcasm. When she looked at Lewis she was attentive, open and warm.

    The extradition is plainly being rushed through in accordance with a Washington dictated timetable. Apart from a desire to pre-empt the Spanish court providing evidence on CIA activity in sabotaging the defence, what makes the February date so important to the USA? I would welcome any thoughts.

    Baraitser dismissed the defence’s request for a separate prior hearing to consider whether the extradition treaty applied at all, without bothering to give any reason why (possibly she had not properly memorised what Lewis had been instructing her to agree with). Yet this is Article 4 of the UK/US Extradition Treaty 2007 in full:



    On the face of it, what Assange is accused of is the very definition of a political offence – if this is not, then what is? It is not covered by any of the exceptions from that listed. There is every reason to consider whether this charge is excluded by the extradition treaty, and to do so before the long and very costly process of considering all the evidence should the treaty apply. But Baraitser simply dismissed the argument out of hand.

    Just in case anybody was left in any doubt as to what was happening here, Lewis then stood up and suggested that the defence should not be allowed to waste the court’s time with a lot of arguments. All arguments for the substantive hearing should be given in writing in advance and a “guillotine should be applied” (his exact words) to arguments and witnesses in court, perhaps of five hours for the defence. The defence had suggested they would need more than the scheduled five days to present their case. Lewis countered that the entire hearing should be over in two days. Baraitser said this was not procedurally the correct moment to agree this but she will consider it once she had received the evidence bundles.

    (SPOILER: Baraitser is going to do as Lewis instructs and cut the substantive hearing short).

    Baraitser then capped it all by saying the February hearing will be held, not at the comparatively open and accessible Westminster Magistrates Court where we were, but at Belmarsh Magistrates Court, the grim high security facility used for preliminary legal processing of terrorists, attached to the maximum security prison where Assange is being held. There are only six seats for the public in even the largest court at Belmarsh, and the object is plainly to evade public scrutiny and make sure that Baraitser is not exposed in public again to a genuine account of her proceedings, like this one you are reading. I will probably be unable to get in to the substantive hearing at Belmarsh.

    Plainly the authorities were disconcerted by the hundreds of good people who had turned up to support Julian. They hope that far fewer will get to the much less accessible Belmarsh. I am fairly certain (and recall I had a long career as a diplomat) that the two extra American government officials who arrived halfway through proceedings were armed security personnel, brought in because of alarm at the number of protestors around a hearing in which were present senior US officials. The move to Belmarsh may be an American initiative.

    Assange’s defence team objected strenuously to the move to Belmarsh, in particular on the grounds that there are no conference rooms available there to consult their client and they have very inadequate access to him in the jail. Baraitser dismissed their objection offhand and with a very definite smirk.

    Finally, Baraitser turned to Julian and ordered him to stand, and asked him if he had understood the proceedings. He replied in the negative, said that he could not think, and gave every appearance of disorientation. Then he seemed to find an inner strength, drew himself up a little, and said:
    I do not understand how this process is equitable. This superpower had 10 years to prepare for this case and I can’t even access my writings. It is very difficult, where I am, to do anything. These people have unlimited resources.
    The effort then seemed to become too much, his voice dropped and he became increasingly confused and incoherent. He spoke of whistleblowers and publishers being labeled enemies of the people, then spoke about his children’s DNA being stolen and of being spied on in his meetings with his psychologist. I am not suggesting at all that Julian was wrong about these points, but he could not properly frame nor articulate them. He was plainly not himself, very ill and it was just horribly painful to watch. Baraitser showed neither sympathy nor the least concern. She tartly observed that if he could not understand what had happened, his lawyers could explain it to him, and she swept out of court.

    The whole experience was profoundly upsetting. It was very plain that there was no genuine process of legal consideration happening here. What we had was a naked demonstration of the power of the state, and a naked dictation of proceedings by the Americans. Julian was in a box behind bulletproof glass, and I and the thirty odd other members of the public who had squeezed in were in a different box behind more bulletproof glass. I do not know if he could see me or his other friends in the court, or if he was capable of recognising anybody. He gave no indication that he did.

    In Belmarsh he is kept in complete isolation for 23 hours a day. He is permitted 45 minutes exercise. If he has to be moved, they clear the corridors before he walks down them and they lock all cell doors to ensure he has no contact with any other prisoner outside the short and strictly supervised exercise period. There is no possible justification for this inhuman regime, used on major terrorists, being imposed on a publisher who is a remand prisoner.

    I have been both cataloguing and protesting for years the increasingly authoritarian powers of the UK state, but that the most gross abuse could be so open and undisguised is still a shock. The campaign of demonisation and dehumanisation against Julian, based on government and media lie after government and media lie, has led to a situation where he can be slowly killed in public sight, and arraigned on a charge of publishing the truth about government wrongdoing, while receiving no assistance from “liberal” society.

    Unless Julian is released shortly he will be destroyed. If the state can do this, then who is next?

    ——————————————
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    Troll-hood motto: Never, ever, however, whatsoever, to anyone, a point concede.

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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Julian Assange's treatment in court and prison is clearly illegal and wrong and is vile and depraved. It's about as low as the two countries' judicial systems can fall, though I expect I'll be proved wrong.

    Pompeo and Trump, at best, want Assange extradited for further ill treatment; Qanon may want to clear their minds and catch up to reality.


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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    I do hope they are successful.

    EDITORIAL: Don’t Railroad Julian Assange to Virginia
    October 22, 2019

    The WikiLeaks legal team have a strong case to have Assange’s extradition request thrown out after the government that wants him extradited got hold of surveillance video of his privileged attorney-client conversations.

    If this were a normal legal case, WikiLeaks’ lawyers would almost certainly be able to get the extradition request by the United States for their client Julian Assange thrown out on the grounds that his privileged conversations with his lawyers at Ecuador’s London embassy were secretly videotaped, and that the very nation that wants him extradited to stand trial in Virginia has obtained access to those videos. In a normal extradition case it would be hard to imagine Britain sending a suspect to a country whose government has already eavesdropped on that suspect’s defense preparations.

    But this is not a normal legal case.

    “The Case should be thrown out immediately. Not only is it illegal on the face of the treaty, the U.S. has conducted illegal operations against Assange and his lawyers which are the subject of a major investigation in Spain,” WikiLeaks Editor-In-Chief Kristinn Hrafnsson said on Monday as the imprisoned Assange appeared before a judge in magistrate’s court in London. “I don’t understand how this is equitable,” Assange told the court. “This superpower had 10 years to prepare for this case and I can’t access my writings. It’s very difficult where I am to do anything but these people have unlimited resources…They are saying journalists and whistleblowers are enemies of the people. They have unfair advantages dealing with documents. They [know] the interior of my life with my psychologist” as the CIA presumably obtained videos of those conversations as well. Assange was then packed off in a van back to his dreary cell at Belmarsh prison.

    This is a travesty of justice on many levels. The existence of Section E of the 1917 Espionage Act, which technically incriminates the unauthorized possession and dissemination of U.S. classified material by anyone, anywhere in the world, effectively criminalizes investigative journalism and is a travesty that must be challenged on First Amendment grounds. And now a defendant’s rights to a fair trial here in Virginia have been seriously undermined, indeed practically nullified, after his conversations with his attorneys came into the possession of the government that wants to prosecute him.

    But this is not about justice. This is about revenge. No case better illustrates just how corruptly powerful the U.S. and British intelligence services and militaries have become, as well as the justice system of both nations that defend those corrupt interests. No case better illustrates how those powerful interests are being protected by the legal system in punishing the man who did most to expose their crimes to a public made apathetic by an Establishment media that has distracted them, while protecting the powerful and presenting Assange as an enemy of the people. No case better illustrates how the U.S. and Britain, together carrying out illegal mass surveillance and unending war, are clinging to a mere pretense of democracy. That pretense is being imperiled by the adjudication of this case.

    If both governments care in the very least about maintaining an appearance of following the rule of law, it has this opportunity: Let Julian Assange go.
    A million galaxies are a little foam on that shoreless sea. ~ Rumi

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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    NEW from WikiLeaks October 23rd, 2019
    One of the panel members was Dr José Bustani, the first Director-General of the OPCW, who concluded that: “The convincing evidence of irregular behaviour in the OPCW investigation of the alleged Douma chemical attack confirms doubts and suspicions I already had. I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best. The picture is certainly clearer now, although very disturbing”
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    OPCW Whistleblower Panel on the Douma attack of April 2018 - link to Wikileaks, here: https://wikileaks.org/opcw-douma/#OP...20April%202018
    23 October, 2019

    Today WikiLeaks publishes a statement made by a panel that listened to testimony and reviewed evidence from a whistleblower from the OPCW (Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons) last week. To accompany this statement, Wikileaks is also publishing a previously leaked engineering assessment of the alleged chemical attack in Douma, Syria on April 7th last year. This assessment was omitted in the final report by the OPCW, which does not support its findings.

    WikiLeaks editor Kristinn Hrafnsson took part in the panel to review the testimony and documents from the OPCW whistleblower. He says: “The panel was presented with evidence that casts doubt on the integrity of the OPCW. Although the whistleblower was not ready to step forward and/or present documents to the public, WikiLeaks believes it is now of utmost interest for the public to see everything that was collected by the Fact Finding Mission on Douma and all scientific reports written in relation to the investigation.

    We call out to people within the OPCW to leak these documents securely to us via wikileaks.org/#submit One of the panel members was Dr José Bustani, the first Director-General of the OPCW, who concluded that: “The convincing evidence of irregular behaviour in the OPCW investigation of the alleged Douma chemical attack confirms doubts and suspicions I already had. I could make no sense of what I was reading in the international press. Even official reports of investigations seemed incoherent at best. The picture is certainly clearer now, although very disturbing”

    In support of the OPCW’s original objectives, the panel called upon the organisation to re-establish its credibility and legitimacy by allowing ‘all inspectors who took part in the Douma investigation to come forward and report their differing observations in an appropriate forum of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention’

    - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

    Documents available here:
    OPCW-Analytical-Points-final - https://wikileaks.org/opcw-douma/doc...ints-final.pdf
    OPCW-Statement-final - https://wikileaks.org/opcw-douma/doc...ment-final.pdf
    20190227-Engineering-assessment-of-two-cylinders-observed-at-the-Douma-incident - https://wikileaks.org/opcw-douma/doc...a-incident.pdf
    Last edited by Tintin; 24th October 2019 at 13:20.
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    WikiLeaks UPDATE: 23 November, 2019

    Internal OPCW E-Mail (link)

    OPCW management accused of doctoring Syrian chemical weapons report

    Wikileaks today publishes an e-mail, sent by a member of an OPCW fact-finding mission to Syria to his superiors, in which he expresses his gravest concern over intentional bias introduced to a redacted version of the report he co-authored.

    The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons sent a team of experts to investigate allegations that a chemical attack took place in the Syrian city of Douma on the 7th of April 2018. The author of the e-mail was a member of that team and claims the redacted preliminary version of the report, misrepresents the facts he and his colleagues discovered on the ground. The e-mail is dated 22nd of June. It is addressed to Robert Fairweather, Chief of Cabinet, and forwarded to his deputy Aamir Shouket and members of the fact-finding mission to Douma.

    He says this misrepresentation was achieved by selective omission, introducing a bias which undermines the credibility of the report. Further it is claimed that crucial facts, that have remained in the redacted version:

    Quote “...have morphed into something quite different to what was originally drafted.”
    This is said to have been done at the behest of the Office of the Director General (a post that was held by Turkish diplomat Ahmet Üzümcü at the time, he has since been replaced by Spaniard Fernando Arias).

    The attack in question was widely attributed to the Syrian Army, based on reports by rebel forces that were present in Douma at the time, and this assertion was backed up by the United States, British and French governments.

    These three countries carried out air strikes against Syrian government targets in response, on the 14th of April 2018. This was before the fact-finding team had gained access to the site in Douma, the mission there was delayed for nearly two weeks by entrenched rebel fighters and subsequent clashes between the rebels and government forces that moved into the area.

    Upon arrival the team found much of the physical evidence, including the bodies of the deceased, was no longer available. It was alleged that 49 had died and up to 650 had been seriously affected by a weaponized chemical gas released in a specific area of rebel-held Douma on that day in April. Rebels claimed the gas came from cylinders dropped from aircraft, clearly implicating Syrian government forces who had complete air superiority.

    The redacted report seemed to support these conclusions but the author of the released e-mail outlines some specific aspects of it which he considers: “particularly worrisome.”

    Firstly, there is a statement in the redacted report. It states that there is sufficient evidence to determine the presence of “chlorine, or another reactive chlorine-containing chemical.”

    The e-mail points out that this was:

    Quote “likely one or more chemicals that contain a reactive chlorine atom. Such chemicals could include… the major ingredient of household chlorine-based bleach. Purposely singling out chlorine gas as one of the possibilities is disingenuous.”
    The redacted report also removed context from a claim in the original draft, which concerned the likelihood of the gas having emanated from cylinders found at the scene in Douma. The original text is said to have purposely emphasised that there was insufficient evidence to affirm this being the case. This is “a major deviation from the original report” according to the author.

    He also cites problems with paragraph in the redacted version, which states:

    Quote ”based on the high levels of various chlorinated organic derivatives detected in environmental samples”.
    This is said to overstate the case. According to the e-mail:

    Quote “They were, in most cases, present only in parts per billion range, as low as 1-2 ppb, which is essentially trace quantities.”
    One piece of evidence, which was shown on news networks across the world, was a video said to show victims being treated in a hospital in the aftermath of the attack in Douma. The symptoms shown were, however, not consistent with what witnesses reported seeing that day. A detailed discussion of this was apparently omitted from the redacted version of the OPCW report.

    The e-mail states:

    Quote “Omitting this section of the report (including the Epidemiology which has been removed in its entirety) has a serious negative impact on the report as this section is inextricably linked to the chemical agent identified… In this case, the confidence in the identity of chlorine or any other choking agent is drawn into question precisely because of the inconsistency with the reported and observed symptoms. The inconsistency was not only noted by the fact-finding mission team, but strongly supported by three toxicologists with expertise in exposure to chemical warfare agents.”
    Yet another point of contention is the placement and condition of the cylinders reported to have contained the chemical agent. It has been alleged that their condition may not be consistent with having been dropped from the air, compared to damaged in the immediate surrounding area. This was discussed in an unreleased engineering report from OPCW that was leaked and Wikileaks published in October 2019 and indicates it is unlikely the cylinders were air-dropped (see previous release: OPCW Whistleblower Panel on the Douma attack of April 2018)

    Sections discussing this are largely absent from the redacted report. “This information was important in assessing the likelihood of the ‘presence’ of toxic chemicals versus the ‘use’ of toxic chemicals,” states the e-mail.

    The author ends his letter with an appeal to the management to allow him to attach his differing observations to the document.

    The annual conference of the states parties of the OPCW that is composed of representatives of all member states of the convention starts Monday November 25th in The Hague.

    Media partnership and coordination: La Repubblica (Italy), Stundin (Iceland), Der Spiegel (Germany), Mail on Sunday (U.K.)

    Source

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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    [STATEMENT] JOURNALISTS SPEAK UP FOR JULIAN ASSANGE

    Link to statement: https://speak-up-for-assange.org/jou...u=1&cf_id=1469

    Link to sign: https://speak-up-for-assange.org/

    This may only apply to a relatively small number of us here (as journalists), and consequently, as one of those, I have signed this now.

    The statement text reads as follows and is as accurate a summary as you'll find anywhere

    --------------------------------------------
    Julian Assange, founder and publisher of WikiLeaks, is currently detained in Belmarsh high-security prison in the United Kingdom and faces extradition to the United States and criminal prosecution under the Espionage Act. He risks up to 175 years imprisonment for his part in making public the leak of US military documents from Afghanistan and Iraq, and a trove of US State Department cables. The ‘War Diaries’ provided evidence that the US Government misled the public about activities in Afghanistan and Iraq and committed war crimes. WikiLeaks partnered with a wide range of media organizations worldwide that republished the War Diaries and embassy cables. The legal action underway against Mr Assange sets an extremely dangerous precedent for journalists, media organizations and the freedom of the press.

    We, journalists and journalistic organizations around the globe, express our grave concern for Mr Assange’s wellbeing, for his continued detention and for the draconian espionage charges.

    This case stands at the heart of the principle of free speech. If the US government can prosecute Mr Assange for publishing classified documents, it may clear the way for governments to prosecute journalists anywhere, an alarming precedent for freedom of the press worldwide. Also, the use of espionage charges against people publishing materials provided by whistleblowers is a first and should alarm every journalist and publisher.

    In a democracy, journalists can reveal war crimes and cases of torture and abuse without having to go to jail. It is the very role of the press in a democracy. If governments can use espionage laws against journalists and publishers, they are deprived of their most important and traditional defense – of acting in the public interest – which does not apply under the Espionage Act.

    Prior to being moved to Belmarsh prison, Mr Assange spent more than a year under house arrest and then seven years inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he had been granted political asylum. Throughout this time he was subjected to serious violations of his human rights, including having his legally privileged conversations spied on by organizations taking direct instruction from US agencies. Journalists visiting were subjected to pervasive surveillance. He had restricted access to legal defense and medical care and was deprived of exposure to sunlight and exercise. In April 2019, the Moreno government allowed UK law enforcement officers to enter the Ecuador embassy and seize Mr Assange. Since then he has been held in solitary confinement for up to 23 hours a day and, according to visitors, is “heavily medicated”. His physical and mental health have seriously deteriorated.

    As early as 2015 the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (WGAD) determined that Mr Assange was arbitrarily detained and deprived of his liberty, and called for him to be released and paid compensation. In May 2019, the WGAD reiterated its concerns and request for his personal liberty to be restored.

    We hold the governments of the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Ecuador and Sweden accountable for the human rights violations to which Mr Assange has been subjected.

    Julian Assange has made an outstanding contribution to public interest journalism, transparency and government accountability around the world. He is being singled out and prosecuted for publishing information that should never have been withheld from the public. His work has been recognized by the Walkley Award for Most Outstanding Contribution to Journalism in 2011, the Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism, the Index on Censorship prize, the Economist’s New Media Award, the Amnesty International New Media Award, the 2019 Gavin MacFadyen Award and many others. WikiLeaks has also been nominated for the UN Mandela Prize in 2015 and for the Nobel Peace Prize seven times (2010-2015, 2019).

    Mr Assange’s reporting of abuses and crimes is of historic importance, as have been the contributions by whistleblowers Edward Snowden, Chelsea Manning and Reality Winner, who are now in exile or incarcerated. They have all faced relentless smear campaigns waged by their opponents, campaigns that have often led to erroneous media reports and a lack of scrutiny and media coverage of their predicaments. The systematic abuse of Mr Assange’s rights for the past nine years has been understood and protested by the Committee to Protect Journalists, the International Federation of Journalists and leading human rights organisations. But in public discussion there has been an insidious normalising of how he has been treated.

    United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer investigated the case and in June 2019 wrote:

    “it finally dawned on me that I had been blinded by propaganda, and that Assange had been systematically slandered to divert attention from the crimes he exposed. Once he had been dehumanized through isolation, ridicule and shame, just like the witches we used to burn at the stake, it was easy to deprive him of his most fundamental rights without provoking public outrage worldwide. And thus, a legal precedent is being set, through the backdoor of our own complacency, which in the future can and will be applied just as well to disclosures by The Guardian, the New York Times and ABC News”.

    “By displaying an attitude of complacency at best, and of complicity at worst, Sweden, Ecuador, UK and US governments have created an atmosphere of impunity encouraging Mr Assange’s uninhibited vilification and abuse. In 20 years of work with victims of war, violence and political persecution I have never seen a group of democratic States ganging up to deliberately isolate, demonize and abuse a single individual for such a long time and with so little regard for human dignity and the rule of law.”

    In November 2019, Melzer recommended that Mr Assange’s extradition to US be barred and that he be promptly released. “He continues to be detained under oppressive conditions of isolation and surveillance, not justified by his detention status (…) Mr Assange’s continued exposure to arbitrariness and abuse may soon end up costing his life”, said Melzer.

    In 1898, French writer Émile Zola wrote the open letter J’accuse…! (I accuse) to warn about the wrongful sentencing to life in prison of a military officer named Alfred Dreyfus on espionage charges. Zola’s stance entered history books and still today stands for our duty to fight miscarriages of justice and to hold the powerful to account. This duty is as necessary as ever today, when Julian Assange is being victimized by governments and faces 17 charges[1] under the US Espionage Act, legislation that also dates back over hundred years.

    As journalists and journalists’ organizations that believe in human rights, freedom of information and of the public’s right to know, we demand the immediate release of Julian Assange.

    We urge our governments, all national and international agencies and fellow journalists to call for an end to the legal campaign being waged against him for the crime of revealing war crimes.

    We urge our fellow journalists to inform the public accurately about this abuse of fundamental rights.

    We urge all journalists to speak up in defense of Julian Assange at this critical time.

    Dangerous times call for fearless journalism.
    Last edited by Tintin; 16th January 2020 at 14:40.
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  19. Link to Post #110
    Scotland Moderator Billy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Quote Posted by Tintin (here)
    [STATEMENT] JOURNALISTS SPEAK UP FOR JULIAN ASSANGE

    Link to statement: https://speak-up-for-assange.org/jou...u=1&cf_id=1469

    This may only apply to a relatively small number of us here, and consequently, as one of those, I have signed this now.
    We urge our governments, all national and international agencies and fellow journalists to call for an end to the legal campaign being waged against him for the crime of revealing war crimes.

    We urge our fellow journalists to inform the public accurately about this abuse of fundamental rights.

    We urge all journalists to speak up in defense of Julian Assange at this critical time.

    Dangerous times call for fearless journalism.[/COLOR][/INDENT][/INDENT]
    It looks like this is only for journalist world wide to sign.

    I also signed the letter and it was accepted by a confirmation email
    When you express from a fearful heart in the now moment, You create a fearful future.
    When you express from a loving heart in the now moment, You create a loving future.

    Have no fear, Be aware and live your lives journey from a compassionate caring nurturing heart to manifest a compassionate caring nurturing future. Billyji


    Peace

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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    WikiLeaks Editor: US Is Saying First Amendment Doesn’t Apply To Foreigners In Assange Case
    JANUARY 23, 2020 by CAITLIN JOHNSTONE


    "WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Kristinn Hrafnsson gave a brief statement to the press after the latest court hearing for Julian Assange’s extradition case in London today, saying the Trump administration is arguing that the First Amendment of the US Constitution doesn’t provide press freedom protection to foreign nationals like Assange.

    “We have now learned from submissions and affidavits presented by the United States to this court that they do not consider foreign nationals to have a First Amendment protection,” Hrafnsson said.

    “Now let that sink in for a second,” Hrafnsson continued. “At the same time that the US government is chasing journalists all over the world, they claim they have extra-territorial reach, they have decided that all foreign journalists which include many of you here, have no protection under the First Amendment of the United States. So that goes to show the gravity of this case. This is not about Julian Assange, it’s about press freedom.”

    Hrafnsson’s very newsworthy claim has as of this writing received no mainstream news media coverage at all. The video above is from independent reporter Gordon Dimmack.

    This prosecutorial strategy would be very much in alignment with remarks made in 2017 by then-CIA Director Mike Pompeo. https://www.csis.org/analysis/discus...or-mike-pompeo

    “Julian Assange has no First Amendment freedoms. He’s sitting in an embassy in London. He’s not a U.S. citizen,” Pompeo told the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

    That, like nearly every sound which emits from Pompeo’s amorphous face, was a lie. The First Amendment is not a set of special free speech privileges that the US government magnanimously bestows upon a few select individuals, it’s a limitation placed upon the US government’s ability to restrict rights that all persons everywhere are assumed to have.

    This is like a sex offender who’s barred from living within 500 yards of a school claiming that the school he moved in next to is exempt because it’s full of immigrants who therefore aren’t protected by his restriction. It’s a restriction placed on the government, not a right that is given to certain people.

    Attorney and Future of Freedom Foundation president Jacob Hornberger explained after Pompeo’s remarks: https://www.fff.org/2017/04/27/cia-d...rst-amendment/ “As Jefferson points out, everyone, not just American citizens, is endowed with these natural, God-given rights, including life, freedom, and the pursuit of happiness. That includes people who are citizens of other countries. Citizenship has nothing to do rights that are vested in everyone by nature and God. At the risk of belaboring the obvious, that includes Julian Assange.”

    The Empire’s War On Oppositional Journalism Continues To Escalate
    Quote "Journalist Glenn Greenwald has been charged by the Bolsonaro government in Brazil with the same prosecutorial angle used by the US to target WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange." #FreeAssangehttps://t.co/jaWaaB0p3a

    — Caitlin Johnstone ⏳ (@caitoz) January 22, 2020
    Journalist Glenn Greenwald, who is himself now being legally persecuted by the same empire as Assange under an indictment which Hrafnsson in the aforementioned statement called “almost a carbon copy of the indictment against Julian Assange”, also denounced Pompeo’s 2017 remarks. https://medium.com/@caityjohnstone/t...e-5dc6bf3b1331

    “The notion that WikiLeaks has no free press rights because Assange is a foreigner is both wrong and dangerous,” Greenwald wrote at the time. “When I worked at the Guardian, my editors were all non-Americans. Would it therefore have been constitutionally permissible for the U.S. Government to shut down that paper and imprison its editors on the ground that they enjoy no constitutional protections? Obviously not.”

    Greenwald, who is a former litigation attorney, referenced a Salon article he’d written in 2010 skillfully outlining why Senator Susan Collins’ attempts to spin constitutional rights as inapplicable to foreigners would be outlandish, insane, illegal and unconstitutional to put into practice. https://www.salon.com/control/2010/02/01/collins_5/

    “To see how false this notion is that the Constitution only applies to U.S. citizens, one need do nothing more than read the Bill of Rights,” Greenwald argued in 2010. “It says nothing about ‘citizens.’ To the contrary, many of the provisions are simply restrictions on what the Government is permitted to do (‘Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion . . . or abridging the freedom of speech’; ‘No soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner’). And where rights are expressly vested, they are pointedly not vested in ‘citizens,’ but rather in ‘persons’ or ‘the accused’ (‘No person shall . . . . be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law’; ‘In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed . . . . and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense’).”

    “The U.S. Supreme Court, in 2008, issued a highly publicized opinion, in Boumediene v. Bush, which, by itself, makes clear how false is the claim that the Constitution applies only to Americans,” Greenwald wrote. “The Boumediene Court held that it was unconstitutional for the Military Commissions Act to deny habeas corpus rights to Guantanamo detainees, none of whom was an American citizen (indeed, the detainees were all foreign nationals outside of the U.S.). If the Constitution applied only to U.S. citizens, that decision would obviously be impossible.”

    “The principle that the Constitution applies not only to Americans, but also to foreigners, was hardly invented by the Court in 2008,” Greenwald added. “To the contrary, the Supreme Court — all the way back in 1886 — explicitly held this to be the case, when, in Yick Wo v. Hopkins, it overturned the criminal conviction of a Chinese citizen living in California on the ground that the law in question violated his Fourteenth Amendment rights to due process and equal protection. In so doing, the Court explicitly rejected what Susan Collins and many others claim about the Constitution.”

    These “and many others” Greenwald referred to would now include both Mike Pompeo and the Department of Justice prosecutors who are attempting to extradite and imprison Assange for publishing information exposing US war crimes.

    Quote Kristinn Hrafnsson editor in chief of WikiLeaks: “We learned today from the prosecution that the US does not consider foreign nationals to be protected under the 1st Amendment” #DontExtraditeAssange #FreeJulianAssange pic.twitter.com/9tNb6bCF0s

    — Juan Passarelli (@jlpassarelli) January 23, 2020
    So let’s be clear here: the Trump administration isn’t just working to establish a legal precedent which will demolish press freedoms around the world, it’s also working to change how the US Constitution operates on a very fundamental level.

    Does now seem like a good time to fight against this to you? Because it sure as hell seems like that time to me.

    Hrafnsson also said in this same statement that Assange’s extradition trial is going to be split into two separate dates, the first on February 24 for one week and then reconvening again for three weeks starting May 18. If you care about freedom of virtually any sort, I highly recommend paying very, very close attention." https://www.canberratimes.com.au/sto...tion/?cs=14232
    Each breath a gift...
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Sanders co-chair: Greenwald charges could cause 'chilling effect on journalism across the world'
    BY ZACK BUDRYK - 01/21/20
    https://thehill.com/policy/technolog...ling-effect-on

    "Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), a co-chairman for Sen. Bernie Sanders’s (I-Vt.) presidential campaign, spoke out Tuesday against charges by the Brazilian government against American journalist Glenn Greenwald, saying the country illustrated the need for Espionage Act reform in the U.S.

    “Prosecuting reporters for doing their work will have chilling effect on journalism across the world,” Khanna tweeted Tuesday. “I'm crafting legislation to protect journalists from being prosecuted over their published work.”
    Quote Rep. Ro Khanna

    @RepRoKhanna
    Prosecuting reporters for doing their work will have chilling effect on journalism across the world.

    I'm crafting legislation to protect journalists from being prosecuted over their published work. https://twitter.com/jaketapper/statu...61479684780032

    Jake Tapper

    @jaketapper
    Important context for arrest of ⁦@ggreenwald⁩ — Brazilian President Bolsonaro has been threatening Greenwald for a long time because of his aggressive and excellent journalism https://cpj.org/2019/07/brazilian-pr...-greenwald.php

    1,481
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    Khanna wrote he is currently developing legislation to amend the law, which was the basis for federal charges against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to ensure it cannot be used to indict journalists.

    "The Trump administration charging Assange opened up a chilling effect on journalism," Khanna told CBS News.

    "If you are the recipient of information that is sensitive and you haven't been involved in assisting the collection of information, but you're just receiving that information from a source and publishing it for journalistic purposes — then you can't be prosecuted.”


    Khanna said that he hopes to work with Rep. Justin Amash (I-Mich.), a co-founder of the House Freedom Caucus who was later removed from it after leaving the Republican Party, as well as conservative members he believes may be similarly concerned about the potential for government overreach.

    The eventual bill, he said, “will be a major protection for journalists' ability to work on these critical issues.”

    Greenwald, who lives in Brazil, has been accused by prosecutors of cyber crimes in relation to his publication of private phone conversations involving high-level Brazilian officials. He has denied all charges and called them “an obvious attempt to attack a free press” in retaliation for his reporting on President Jair Bolsonaro's government."
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Belmarsh Prison Inmates Prove More Ethical Than Entire Western Empire
    by CAITLIN JOHNSTONE
    JANUARY 25, 2020
    https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2020/01...estern-empire/



    "In some refreshingly good news about Julian Assange, WikiLeaks is reporting that its founder has finally been moved out of solitary confinement to a different wing in Belmarsh Prison where he can have normal social interactions with 40 other inmates.

    This fantastic news lifts a huge weight from the chests of those of us who’ve been protesting Assange’s cruel and unusual treatment at the hands of an international alliance of governments bent on making a draconian public example of a journalist whose publications exposed US war crimes. Solitary confinement is a form of torture, and a UN Special Rapporteur has confirmed that Assange shows clear symptoms that he is a victim of psychological torture caused by his persecution from coordinated efforts by Washington, London, Stockholm, Canberra and Quito.

    So what caused this shift in Assange’s treatment? Did the powerful empire-like alliance loosely centralized around the United States suddenly come to its senses and realize that torturing journalists for telling the truth is the sort of tyrannical abuse that it accuses other governments of perpetrating? Did officials in the British government bow to public pressure from the pro-Assange demonstrations which have been taking place in London month after month and have some faint flickerings of conscience? Did Belmarsh Prison authorities come to their senses after more than a hundred doctors warned that their cruelty was killing the award-winning publisher?

    Why no. As it turns out, Assange was in fact rescued from the cruelty of this globe-sprawling empire by the concerted protests of high-security prison inmates.

    Quote Prisoners' revolt and pressure from legal team and campaigners forces Belmarsh to move Assange out of solitary. WikiLeaks statement: pic.twitter.com/9Af9y3zC93

    — Don't Extradite Assange (@DEAcampaign) January 24, 2020
    “In a dramatic climbdown, authorities at Belmarsh Prison have moved Julian Assange from solitary confinement in the medical wing and relocated him to an area with other inmates,” said WikiLeaks Ambassador Joseph Farrell in a statement today. “The move is a huge victory for Assange’s legal team and for campaigners who have been insisting for weeks that the prison authorities must end the punitive treatment of Assange.”

    “But the decision to relocate Assange is also a massive victory of prisoners in Belmarsh,” Farrell added. “A group of inmates have petitioned the prison governor on three occasions, insisting that the treatment of Assange was unjust and unfair. After meetings between prisoners, lawyers and the Belmarsh authorities, Assange was moved to a different prison wing — albeit one with only 40 inmates.”

    Belmarsh is a notoriously harsh maximum-security prison full of violent offenders and prisoners convicted under anti-terrorism laws, one of many reasons that Assange supporters have so vigorously opposed his confinement there. What does it tell you about the society you are living in that this population has a superior moral compass to the people who are actually running things?

    For years I’ve been arguing with Democratic Party-aligned liberals on one side saying that Assange is a Russian agent who deserves to be tortured, and a bunch of Trump-aligned right wingers on the other side saying their president is extraditing Assange for the good of the world. These are the two mainstream views on Assange within the western empire today. And a group of Belmarsh prisoners just proved themselves infinitely more ethical than any of them. They have a better sense of right and wrong than those running the empire, and they have a better sense of right and wrong than the propagandized apologists for that empire.

    Quote UN Special Rapporteur on torture: “In 20 years..I have never seen a group of democratic States ganging up to deliberately isolate, demonise and abuse a single individual for such a long time and with so little regard for human dignity and the rule of law”https://t.co/UMGegjYrBS

    — WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) May 31, 2019
    Not that this should surprise us; the US-centralized empire is spectacularly evil, and this this group of Belmarsh prisoners had a unique vantage point on Assange’s plight. The prisoners demonstrated their moral superiority to the mainstream public not because prison inmates are on average inherently better people than those on the outside, but because they were confronted with the reality of Assange’s situation instead of mainlining mass media propaganda about Assange. They were dealing with reality rather than narrative, so they addressed that reality. And they did so admirably.

    The smear campaign that has been conducted against Assange by the political/media class has distorted public perception of his plight so severely that there are far more people seeing his case through a distorted understanding than there are people who actually understand what’s happening to him. We saw this illustrated very clearly when the aforementioned UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, Nils Melzer, admitted frankly that before going to investigate Assange’s case for himself he’d been propagandized by this same smear campaign as well.

    “When I was first approached by his defense team seeking protection from my mandate in December last year, I was reluctant to do so, because, me too, I had been affected by this prejudice that I had absorbed through all these public narratives spread in the media over the years,” Melzer told Democracy Now in an interview last year. “And only when I scratched the surface a little bit, I saw how little foundation there was to back this up and how much fabrication and manipulation there is in this case. So I encourage everybody to really look below the surface in this case.”

    Inmates of Belmarsh prison had a superior understanding of Assange’s plight because they wouldn’t have been affected by these narratives. They would simply have seen what’s right in front of them, with their own eyes: a nonviolent prisoner being caged in solitary confinement 23 hours a day for no discernible reason.

    You couldn’t ask for a clearer example of the difference between fact and narrative than this. Whoever controls the narrative controls the world. Whoever can see beyond narrative can see the truth. We must all strive for this."
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Wikileaks Editor in Chief Kristinn Hrafnsson on Julian Assange
    Feb 4, 2020
    acTVism Munich
    40.9K subscribers
    https://goo.gl/aMkRjb

    "In this speech recorded on the 4th of February 2020 in London, Editor-in-Chief of Wikileaks Kristinn Hrafnsson addresses the case of Julian Assange . Hrafnsson's speech starts with his recent experience with Assange when he visited him recently in Belmarsh prison. Hrafnsson then examines the accusation of the U.S. government that asserts that Assange is a hacker and not a journalist. Thereafter he examines the most significant revelations of Wikileaks when Assange led the organisation, the threat that his extradition to the United States poses to press freedom and concludes by surfacing the importance of collective action.

    Kristinn Hrafnsson - editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks since 2018 and an Icelandic investigative journalist. He was named Icelandic journalist of the year three times, in 2004, 2007 and 2010 by Iceland’s National Union of Journalists; the only journalist ever to receive this award thrice.

    To read this interview: https://bit.ly/2Uy9BlJ"
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    German cross-party appeal for release of Julian Assange launches in Berlin
    Streamed live on Feb 6, 2020
    Ruptly
    996K subscribers
    "A cross-party initiative to demand the release of Julian Assange is taking place in Berlin on Thursday, February 6.

    The initiative will include the former Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) chairman Sigmar Gabriel, former German Interior Minister Gerhart Baum (Free Democratic Party; FDP), former German Justice Minister Herta Daubler-Gmelin (SPD), Left Party Bundestag member Sevim Dagdelen, the writer Navid Kermani, and the journalist Günter Wallraff, who are all calling for Assange‘s release as numerous experts consider his state of health to be serious.

    Assange is being held in London’s Belmarsh prison prior to his US extradition hearing that will begin in February.

    If convicted, Assange faces a prison term of up to 175 years."



    (Let's hope that other countries will follow suit. Perhaps if enough do, the UK and US will not find it so easy to ignore.)
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Julian Assange Free the Truth: UN Rapporteur Nils Melzer Abuse of International Law
    Feb 3, 2020
    EF Press
    433 subscribers
    UK Justice Condemned. Rogue State Unleashes Terror on Asylum Seeking Journalist.
    Nils Melzer (@NilsMelzer): https://twitter.com/NilsMelzer?s=09
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  33. Link to Post #117
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Assange's father John Shipton & Wikileaks Chief Editor Kristinn Hrafnsson on how you can support
    Feb 10, 2020
    acTVism Munich
    41K subscribers
    ✔ More videos coming on this topic. Subscribe here: https://goo.gl/aMkRjb

    In this video we interview Julian Assange's father John Shipton and Chief Editor of Wikileaks Kristinn Hrafnsson about the case of Julian Assange and how individuals can support him and protect press freedom.

    Both interviews were recorded on the 4th of February 2020 at the Royal National Hotel in London after the public rally for Julian Assange that was organized by the “Don’t Extradite Assange Campaign.”

    Here is a full list of acTVism videos on this topic:
    ► John McDonnell & John Rees:
    https://youtu.be/QpWyTCB1FdM
    ► Interview with Nils Melzer:
    https://youtu.be/f9KRxF9oVxQ
    ►Tariq Ali's speech:
    https://youtu.be/h_KPqLHAGuE
    ► Jennifer Robinson's speech:
    https://youtu.be/gfBHcxK5HkQ
    ► Nils Melzer's speech:
    https://youtu.be/FQrlJOk2YMo
    ► Don't Extradite Assange Report:
    https://youtu.be/AqEz3y4cn0Y
    ► Kristinn Hrafnsson's speech:
    https://youtu.be/KeFPSQVqwPI
    ► Julian Assange Case: Abby Martin, Snowden, Chomsky, Jill Stein, Varoufakis, Horvat & Richter Respond: https://youtu.be/39IUOeQvaOw
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Nils Melzer UN Special Rapporteur on Torture: Assange "has been tortured & continues to be tortured"
    Feb 11, 2020
    TheWikiLeaksChannel
    79.2K subscribers

    Nils Melzer, UN Special Rapporteur on Torture spoke at the Don't Extradite Assange Ralley in London and said that Julian Assange "has been tortured & continues to be tortured"
    Last edited by onawah; 12th February 2020 at 02:12.
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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    I call for a boycott of England (note I didn't say "UK" - the vassal states in the UK are not responsible) until Julian Assange is released and all charges dropped.


    The boycott of Israel over the genocide of Palestinians is one of the major topics that faceboog scrubs from itself, at the order of Israel, so yes, national boycotts do have an effect.


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    Default Re: Current Wikileaks and Assange News & Releases

    Labour MP Richard Burgon @ Don't Extradite Assange Rally in London
    Feb 11, 2020
    TheWikiLeaksChannel
    79.1K subscribers

    "If journalism is really going to speak truth to power, then they need to expose what the powerful do in all or our names."
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