Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Detestable Assange at it again(?) While being hounded by THEM. You know....THEM)

If this story is correct, we are in for a bit of dejavu all over again. Some reliably complicit world press outlets are apparently poised to help give widest possible circulation to an impending docu-dump concerning operations in Iraq, a dump that amount to about 5 times the amount of Afghan war documents WL released a few months back.

How far back in time does the collection reach? What is the total number of documents? We won't know until Assange pulls the trigger.

We are to be reassured though, by promises from Asschapaeau and his minions that they learned their lesson from the previous dump, and have meticulously combed the documents redacting any information that might put people in danger (which people is he concerned to protect one wonders. Civilians? Military? Iraqi? Coalition? NGOs? Contractors both foreign and Iraqi?)

Never fear though. We should take it on faith that brave sir Robin and his crack team of Wikiexperts have thought all this through and are exceedingly competent to determine what information is or is not germane to the welfare of folks involved in or potentially impacted by free flow of information concerning ongoing Iraqi operations. Yeah. Ol' Julian's got that covered.

On the other hand, if this story, or rather some other parts of it are true, Julien is really just being "Punk'd" by some unnamed fly by night gossip blog..and he isn't really about to pull the trigger on a megadocudump.. Honestly. Why would you believe otherwise, asks Brave Sir Robin. Read this:

WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange on Monday downplayed expectations that a leak was imminent. In a Twitter post, Assange said information were coming from "a single tabloid blog" that had put out a "tremendous amount" of false information about his site.

[Were "information were coming from a single tabloid blog"? Were? Subject verb agreement folks. (Info was coming... Work on it. It's not just a skill it's a duty.]

Well, whatever the source of the "false information," the Pentagon is taking no chances and has had to pull over 100 people together to try and anticipate what is going to be released, so that they can take measures to mitigate damages:

Still, the military says its 120-person task force has been on high alert. The group has been reviewing the documents for weeks to determine what information might be compromised.

Marine Corps Col. Dave Lapan, a Pentagon spokesman, told reporters that the military isn't sure if WikiLeaks has shared the Iraq war logs with any news organizations. But, he said, media should not disseminate the "stolen" information even if it's already posted online by WikiLeaks.

"The concern is that WikiLeaks as an organization should not be made more credible by having credible news organizations facilitate what they're doing," Lapan said.

[Bingo. It's pathetic that this has to be explained to these media outlets. But, let's be brutally frank. In these hard times, with revenue streams shrinking at the WaPo and the NYT, it's really so much easier and cost effective for them to outsource their 'fourth estate' role and investigations to tools (pun intended) like Asschapeau who don't even ask to be paid for said services. Look out Risen and Lichtbau, in future, you may find yourselves out of work, supplanted by the man of the multi-hued coif..hmm.]

In the meantime, Brave Sir Asschapeau has been mightily contending with the dragon-beast that is Swedish government to attain pseudo-Swedish-citizenship, something called a "work and residence permit". He was seeking this because the Swedes provide what amounts to a safe haven for his operation and for "whistle blowers" (self professed or otherwise) and cyber creeps in general. The servers for the WL website reside in Sweden. But, consequent with this humble request from the Knight of the Multi-Hued Coif, we've seen brave Sir Robin of the Rueful countenance investigated, then not investigated, then investigated, on charges of rape and molestation of fair maidens of the realm.

What with that history, coupled with the more recent development that his money spigot has dried up, you don't necessarily have to be wearing one of Sir Julian's tinfoil hats to think something is afoot:

The founder of Wikileaks was denied a Swedish residency permit on Monday and said his whistleblowing website had been cut off by a company that handled many of its donations.

Julian Assange blamed the financial cutoff on the U.S. government, which denied any involvement.

Of course THEY deny it. Of course..

Moneybookers, a British-registered internet payment company that collects WikiLeaks donations, emailed the organisation to say it had closed down its account because it had been put on an official US watchlist and on an Australian government blacklist.

The apparent blacklisting came a few days after the Pentagon publicly expressed its anger at WikiLeaks and its founder, Australian citizen Julian Assange, for obtaining thousands of classified military documents about the war in Afghanistan, in one of the US army's biggest leaks of information. The documents caused a sensation when they were made available to the Guardian, the New York Times and German magazine Der Spiegel, revealing hitherto unreported civilian casualties.

WikiLeaks defied Pentagon calls to return the war logs and destroy all copies. Instead, it has been reported that it intends to release an even larger cache of military documents, disclosing other abuses in Iraq.

Moneybookers moved against WikiLeaks on 13 August, according to the correspondence, less than a week after the Pentagon made public threats of reprisals against the organisation. Moneybookers wrote to Assange: "Following an audit of your account by our security department, we must advise that your account has been closed … to comply with money laundering or other investigations conducted by government authorities."

When Assange emailed to ask what the problem was, he says he was told in response by Daniel Stromberg, the Moneybookers e-commerce manager for the Nordic region: "When I did my regular overview of my customers, I noticed that something was wrong with your account and I emailed our risk and legal department to solve this issue.

"Below I have copied the answer I received from them: 'Hi Daniel, you can inform him that initially his account was suspended due to being accessed from a blacklisted IP address. However, following recent publicity and the subsequently addition of the WikiLeaks entity to blacklists in Australia and watchlists in the USA, we have terminated the business relationship.'"

Assange said: "This is likely to cause a huge backlash against Moneybookers. Craven behaviour in relation to the US government is unlikely to be seen sympathetically."

Moneybookers, which is registered in the UK but controlled by the Bahrain-based group Investcorp, would not make anyone available to explain the decision. Its public relations firm, 77PR, said: "We have never had any request, inquiry or correspondence from any authority regarding this former customer." Asked how this could be reconciled with the references in the correspondence to a blacklist, it said: "We stick with our original statement."

Backlash? Who's suffering backlash? Moneybookers, or the man in mufti, the man of the multi-hued coif, brave Sir Julian? And why did the rape and molestation charges just happen to appear after the Afghan docu-dump? Docu-dump Truthers want to know.

It's Them. It has got to be them...What was that noise?!....Nothing..it was nothing.

Why, it's enough to whiten your fulsome coif..if it weren't whitened already.

You didn't think THEY would just sit back and take it did you Brave Sir Robin? You are getting much less than you deserve. And, if a domestic old media outlet publishes any of the materials, which undoubtedly are classified, although I know this will never actually happen, they should suffer the consequences, and be prosecuted under the Espionage and COMINT acts.

As to how you hold Wikileaks and other non-citizens legally responsible for such information dissemination, that is much trickier. Additionally, the world of non-traditional media, blogs and the like, introduces a whole host of interesting and troubling concerns vis the dissemenation of classified materials.

In the interim, though, Julian knows there are other methods that can be employed in hopes of shutting cyber creeps down. Other methods..

The Shadow knows!


Dubya on his upcoming book "Decision Points"

This book looks to be an interesting variation on the genre of presidential memoirs. He takes us through several key decisions in his life, both in his personal life, and in his public life. Does not set out to give an exhaustive chronology of his two terms, but the thinking that was behind key decisions he made. Those decisions post 9/11, regarding national security will certainly be the most fascinating of the book's chapters. Decision Points comes out Nov 9. (After elections. Classy that) Looking forward to it!

Silent Cal not so silent on taxes (no teleprompter, no cue cards, heck not even a podium with seal, he's old school, index cards)

Brought to you courtesy of DeForest Phonofilms.