WikiLeaks

Assange Updates: British Cops, Swiss Banks, Canadian Cabals

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In today's WikiLeaks news, the police in the U.K. are reportedly preparing to arrest site editor Julian Assange. An added difficulty for Assange should he find himself on trial: The Swiss Post Office has closed his defense fund's bank account.

Meanwhile, Jaime Weinman has written an entertaining post about a WikiLeaks cable that got a fair amount of attention north of the border: an analysis of alleged anti-Americanism on Canadian television.

The breezy tone of the cable kind of suggests someone who was assigned to write about this show but doesn't exactly take it seriously. At the very least, the writer has a future as a television blogger if he ever wants to go in for that sort of thing, with memorable, pithy descriptions of episodes and characters: "the arrival of an arrogant, albeit stunningly attractive female DHS officer, sort of a cross between Salma Hayek and CruellaDe Vil."

But what the cable mostly suggests is someone who is using these TV examples to back up the point he really wants to make, which is that the U.S. should be shoveling more money into his department so they can combat the anti-American tide. At the end of the cable it pushes back against people "who may rate the need for USG public-diplomacy programs as less vital in Canada than in other nations because our societies are so much alike." In other words, it's a fundraising pitch: give us as much money as you give our embassies in countries where anti-Americanism is seen as a bigger threat. So it barely matters whether the writer seriously believes that The Border was more ferociously anti-American than 24, where high authority figures turned out to be evil every year. Criticizing portrayals of America in American shows is not going to get more dough for his department or their projects. And that's what it's all about.

The best thing about Weinman's post is that it reveals the old TV special The Canadian Conspiracy is on YouTube. This is one of those goofy spoofs I vaguely remember enjoying as a teenager in the '80s but have forgotten in virtually every detail in the ensuing 25 years. I hope it holds up: If the extralegal war on WikiLeaks gets too depressing, I'll still be able to soothe myself with a little archaic comedy.

NEXT: Obama's DOJ: Working Hard to Interfere with California's Medical Marijuana System--For You!

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  1. The paranoid’s fever dream of how a fatwa works. Hillary has demanded his head, and so will get it.

    1. If only Hillary had a boss to rein her in.

      1. No one embarrasses The One and gets away with it. Maybe not now, maybe not next year, but The One will get even. Sometimes he’ll let you have a whole life, just so there’s that much more to take away.

    2. Won’t make any difference, so long as any Wikileaks servers are still up and sommeone else has admin privileges.

      Meanwhile, the site is being mirrored all over the world.

      Wikileaks servers’ dotted number IP addresses are being Blogged and Tweeted far and wide in an act of defiance comparable to the DeCSS uprising.

      One of the co-founders of The Pirate Bay is making moves to set up an open source DNS in competition to ICANN.

      Worst-case, if Wikileaks does go down, is the same organization abandoning a single-website model and distributing content by torrent.

      It’s Network vs. Hierarchy Armageddon, and we’ll have their bleeding heads on our fucking battlements.

      1. http://dot-p2p.org = new DNS via torrents FTW!

        1. I find the Netsukuku proposal to be much more interesting. Simple DNS substitutes do not even attempt to address the fact that ISPs can be directed to disconnect a client from the network altogether.

          1. netsukuku looks like a much larger project

            until then, dotp2p looks like it could be up and running in a matter of months

  2. Well, looks like while being seeing what was placed in the “insurance file” soon.

    1. we’ll be seeing

      FFS!

    2. I’m hoping there will be at least one pic of Newt Gingrich’s boobs.

      1. 🙂 Simple, sick, and funny.

      2. Ahem. I assume you mean Newcular Titties Gingrich?

        1. Is it so wrong that I want photographic evidence of said “Newcularishness”?

          I also want to know if he shaves swear words into his taint hair.

          1. What difference does that make? This is simply a PR move. Focus groups just love Gingrich with this new branding. Love!

          2. Newcular Titties Goddamn Gingrich is a good christian man and would never shave swear words into his taint hair.

            I have it on good word that he has a specialty barber do an outline of a bald eagle into his taint hair. Also, he has “Never Forget” tattooed on his balls.

            1. I wonder if Newt took a quick snapshot of his wife’s face when she was in the hospital with cancer and he told her he was leaving her for another (presumably non-cancerous) woman.

              1. I wouldn’t presume “non-cancerous”. Maybe that’s how he gets his rocks off.

                Ya know, boys will be boys, love ’em and leave ’em(when they’re dying in the hospital), you ol’ rascal you, et al, etc etc, whatever.

                1. Disregard this ^, I totally misread your comment.

                  I will say this though: If you had the twin towers tattooed on the shaft of your dick, then you’d be getting more ass than a bicycle seat, and not here bitching about Great Americans ?.

    3. the “insurance file”

      aka “the extortion file.”

  3. Ha ha!

  4. Given what a dud the cables were, the “insurance” file is some guy’s notes and writeups for classes he’s taking for the actuary exams.

    1. Yeah, I’m sure it’s nothing. Which is enough for actors at the highest levels of government to be after this guy.

    2. We are going to fuck them all. Chinese mostly, but not entirely a feint. Invention abounds. Lies, twists and distorts everywhere needed for protection. Hackers monitor chinese and other intel as they burrow into their targets, when they pull, so do we. Inxhaustible supply of material. Near 100,000 documents/emails a day. We’re going to crack the world open and let it flower into something new. If fleecing the CIA will assist us, then fleece we will. We have pullbacks from NED, CFR, Freedomhouse and other CIA teats. We have all of pre 2005 afghanistan. Almost all of india fed. Half a dozen foreign ministries. Dozens of political parties and consulates, worldbank, apec, UN sections, trade groups, tibet and fulan dafa associations and… russian phishing mafia who pull data everywhere. We’re drowing. We don’t even know a tenth of what we have or who it belongs to. We stopped storing it at 1Tb.

      That was in 2007, but — maybe it’s a bluff. A bluff being written about on a private mail list.

    3. Yeah, I am consistently underwhelmed by this guy’s “leaks.” Wake me up when he outs some gay celebrity.

  5. It’s fucking scary that even someone in the public eye as much as Assange can get railroaded like this if the right (or wrong) people deem him a threat.

    1. The fucker should be shot in the face. It’s really just a money making scheme. If not, then why leak in several dumps? He’s a money-grubbing attention whore. I’ll bet $5 to all takers that he kills himself either by his own hand of else the suicide by cop method.

      1. He should be shot in the face because he has an agenda and wants to make money? I didn’t realize that was a capital offense now.

      2. Assuming your assertion is true, he should be shot in the face for trying to make money?

        1. He’s doing it with stolen property, much like a fence would, but I guess that’s okay.

          1. He’s doing it with stolen property

            So government information, the majority of which should be attainable through FOIA request, is “property” now?

            1. And stuff produced with stolen money is now a sacrosanct form of property?

            2. But he didn’t use a FOIA request now, did he? Does this mean that in your world any government document you feel should be made available is simply ripe for the taking? Not al FOIA requests are honored. But you knew that.

              1. Maybe not all. But the things they have released so far are hardly the plans for D-Day. There was no reason for any of it to be classified in the first place, so I’m having trouble getting OUTRAGED!!

                1. Kinda funny that when they were publishing actual war-related documents, there was debate about Wikileaks being jerks and whatnot, but they publish mostly inane shit, and people want their heads on a platter. Must be because they’re now a threat to the House of Saud.

          2. So there should be a death penalty for that? Shit, the Muslims only cut off a hand.

            1. Animals.

      3. Wait, are we betting that he kills himself, or that he “kills himself”? Particularly in the latter case, do you win if he gets shot by cops, who allege he had a gun, which then turns up on his body? Because I wouldn’t take that bet.

      4. It’s really just a money making scheme.

        Ummm as a libertarian i kind of like the idea that a person can make money off of exposing our governments secrets…the vast majority of which should never have been secret in the first place.

        1. By which you are saying that this “person” can also make money off of exposing government secrets that *should* have been secret in the first place – and by implication that you like that idea as well.

          I, for one, don’t like that idea at all. But then I never was too big on espionage against my country insofar as it is by definition generally detrimental to me and my countrymen.

          BTW, in this same forum a few days ago I was being told by many that this creepy, vainglorious little weasel’s motivations were simply idealistic, and he was being glorified here for that.

          1. I never was too big on espionage against my country insofar as it is by definition generally detrimental to me and my countrymen.

            In the first place I don’t think he is committing espionage; the people who are taking the documents would allegedly be. In the second place what has he released that you consider detrimental?

            When you turn on the lights the roaches are going to scatter. The fact that they complain about the light does not change the fact that they are roaches.

            1. >>”In the first place I don’t think he is committing espionage; the people who are taking the documents would allegedly be.”

              So intermediaries in the process of conveying our secrets to our enemies are not engaged in espionage? The history of espionage is full of such people. Eg., many foreign diplomats have been expelled from the US for exactly that – receiving secret information from the guy who actually purloined it and passing it to their own governments. I believe that what you are claiming is at its strongest a semantic quibble.

              >>”In the second place what has he released that you consider detrimental?”

              Oh, I think this handily fills the bill, don’t you?

              1. Yawwwwwwn. You gotta be kidding me.

              2. Depends. Yes, it’s a list of ways to hit facilities that will hurt America. But it’s also eye-opening for Americans to realize to what extent their government considers its “interest” in global terms, rather than national ones.

              3. Oh, I think this handily fills the bill, don’t you?

                No I don’t. Other than the laundry list of cliches that a 2-year could have figured out I cannot take a government seriously whose agents list a fucking “anti-snake venom (sic) factory” as being vital to American security.

                http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2…..state.html

                1. Well, of course – It’s all about some silly snakes. Stupid me.

                  1. Stupid me.

                    The list is horrifying. The fact that our government has defined virtually the entire planet as of critical interest guarantees we will never be at peace.

                    http://213.251.145.96/cable/2009/02/09STATE15113.html#par15

                    1. Well, obviously we should ignore all these things then because, jeez, if someone screwed around with the anitvenin factory we would certainly have to go right to war.

                      You are quite given to hyperbole and, it’s exhausting. Check out time.

          2. By which you are saying that this “person” can also make money off of exposing government secrets that *should* have been secret in the first place – and by implication that you like that idea as well.

            I, for one, don’t like that idea at all. But then I never was too big on espionage against my country insofar as it is by definition generally detrimental to me and my countrymen.

            It is not hard to hypothesize scenarios that agree with your assertion, but the problem with this argument is that those who get to keep the secrets are the ones who get to claim that making such secrets known would be “dangerous” in some way. So if they remain secret, we have no way to know if their claims are true. Acceptance of this argument can’t be based on knowledge, but by deference to authority and trust of an organization that has repeatedly lied and caused harm to us.

          3. What exactly “should” be kept secret and how do we verify that those are in fact the only things being kept secret?

          4. What definition of espionage do you use that includes necessary detriment to the country being spied upon and its citizens?

            1. Say what?! Either you don’t understand the point of espionage or I don’t understand the meaning of “detriment”.

      5. Whether or not he is a money seeking attention whore is really not relevant to the value and interestingness of Wikileaks. And why would a money grubber kill himself? Seems like that would defeat the point of the money grubbing.

  6. I’m sure either 1) he will be defended pro-bono or 2) enough private money will be raised to provide him an adaquate defense.

    Also, I thought it was wikileak’s funds that got frozen, not Assange’s personal funds.

    1. His legal defense fund was just shut down.

      1. I stand corrected

      2. From what I read, he gets to keep the money, he just can’t keep it there. They just have to wait for someone to pick it up or find a place to mail the check.

        1. Then they’ll have a location for the Predator Drone strike.

  7. Of course they’ll keep pretending that Assange will get a fair trial.

    1. Just like Oswald!

      1. Who’s going to Jack Ruby Assange?

          1. Ahmadinejad, who will then be vilified for hating freedom of speech

            1. Wouldn’t it be awesome if he fled to Iran and was given sanctuary? And a pony. Glenn Beck would implode in on himself.

              1. Or if the North Koreans offered him a safe haven in Kim’s palace, and he really did turn out to be a supervillain

  8. Once the world learns that we have been visited, and are being controlled by little, gray, arsenic loving aliens, the pretense will end. No cow anuses will be safe.

    1. No cow anuses will be safe.

      Hide your mother.

      1. Dead. But, she died with her anus on.

        1. Thanks for the visual.

          1. It had a little light?

  9. What shocks me most is that the wise and benevolent Europeans, healers of the sick who hold their pale, yet muscular arms out to embrace the world’s poor, would be so quick to ask “how high” when the U.S. demands that they jump. Such enlightened folks as the Modern European shouldn’t behave like this.

    1. Well Nutrasweet, it looks like they are back together. Magic Man and El Diablo.

    2. You mean well-heeled European bureaucrats have found common cause with well-heeled American bureaucrats?

      I gotta tell you, this shakes my entire worldview to the core.

    3. Wise Europeans who have learned to outsource their defense costs to another country. They can sacrifice the occasional citizen to appease the monster.

      1. Especially when he’s just an ozzie. 😉

  10. “Of course they’ll keep pretending that Assange will get a fair trial.”

    That’s cause Sweden has always been the USA’s bitch.

  11. a cross between Salma Hayek and CruellaDe Vil

    I’ll be in my bunk.

    1. A chihuahua skin coat.

      “Kill two for matching clogs!”

      1. I believe it was actually a ‘greyhound fur tuxedo’.

        1. I was going for a Mexican flair.

          1. I wonder what you could do a an albino African endangered rhino…

            1. I’d much prefer the grizzly bear underwear.

  12. Could this be a strategy by wikileaks? Put Assange out front and center as the “founder, head, spokesman,” etc., even though he admits to not founding the org and it will carry on fine without him?

    As in, they distract from the real issue that could harm them, cyber warfare, and get governments to focus on physical warfare against Assange. That way the site itself isn’t harmed

    1. Too much intrigue. I’m going to explode.

      When’s the Hollywood version going to come out, and who is going to play Assange?

      1. Danny Devito

    2. Who’s got the energy for that?

  13. The Swiss Post Office has closed his [Assange’s] defense fund’s bank account.

    In other words, they indulged in thievery. A State’s agency, thieving??? Who could anybody see that coming???

    1. For what it’s worth, the bank only closed the deposit/withdrawal service for the account. They didn’t seize the funds. They can be transferred to another account.

      Presumably only by Assange. In person.

      And he’s won a free boat and can pick it up behind the police station anytime Monday between 9am and 4pm!

      1. Re: SugarFree,

        For what it’s worth, the bank only closed the deposit/withdrawal service for the account.

        For what it’s worth – it’s like someone holding my piggybank, not breaking it but neither allowing me to take my money out. That’s THIEVING.

        1. And, for what is worth, understand:

          If they can do it to this guy, they can do it to anybody else, even if not one of us does anything wrong. The tyrant always finds an excuse for his tyranny.

        2. Hyperventilate with someone else.

          1. For what is worth, I only hyperventilate when I’m about to finish CoD:BLkOps

    2. Perhaps they simply put the money in an escrow account.

      But I think it’s funny that the state taking his guy’s money is theft, but this dude fencing private state files is a-okay.

      1. Okay then, what ought to be done about this?

        http://www.guardian.co.uk/worl…..-wikileaks

      2. private state files

        Somebody’s not clear on the concept, it seems to me.

        And how is it “fencing” when he gives them away for free?

        1. His website takes donations, much like the 700 Club.

          1. Or like politicians. But, like politicians, absent allegations of quid pro quo, donations are donations, not bribes intended to encourage one to hand over public assets.

      3. Re: Gibby,

        But I think it’s funny that the state taking his guy’s money is theft, but this dude fencing private state files is a-okay.

        First of all, those files ain’t private – they were paid (partly) with MY FUCKING MONEY, then they’re NOT private. When stupid, lazy bureaucrats [but I repeat myself] pay to gather and store these things with THEIR money, then we can talk.

        1. This is similar to the ‘private govt. property debate’ on that one (insert any reason immigration thread).

          We’re accustomed to Tony, Chad, and now SM amongst a number of other liberal statist, but it seems whenever there’s an article about immigration or Wikileaks, the conservative statists come out in droves.

          1. but it seems whenever there’s an article about immigration or Wikileaks, the conservative statists come out in droves.

            You noticed that, too?

          2. Take notes.

  14. Also, when Canadians were asked if the anti-american propaganda went too far they said it didn’t go far enough.

  15. And how does Canada appear on US TV?

    Red Green
    Trailer Park Boys
    Doug and Bob MacKenzie
    Corner Gas
    Leslie Nielsen

    Talk about your negative stereotypes!

    1. I’m more of a Dean Murdoch and Terry Cahill man myself.

    2. Of course, you have Rush and The Tragically Hip to balance that out.

      Gordon Lightfoot ain’t bad, either.

      1. Leonard Cohen alone saves Canada from total derision.

  16. I have what may or may not be a weird take on this whole thing:

    The guy who downloaded the docs? I dont have a problem with him rotting in Leavenworth.

    However, I see no problem with the stuff being published now that its out, better that than being sold to the Russians or Saudis or Canadians.

    And really, I would have no qualm about publishing Australian State Secrets if they came into my possession, if Assange were an American citizen, I might feel differently about this.

    1. I don’t think it’s so weird. That’s basically my take too. The guy who did the leaking is a traitor, but Assange has no duty whatsoever to keep American secrets. Making up a law to criminalize his behavior (like Mitch McConnell called for on the Sunday shows) is asinine. And anyone advocating he be killed has their statism hanging out for everyone to see.

      1. It’s worse than asinine. It’s the rule of men, not of law; basically making up the law on the basis of whether the accused is likable or not. Lori Drew, anybody?

      2. Actually, the law has been on the book for years. It is against the law to have classified documents unless you have been cleared to do so. Assange has not. He could be prosecuted for espionage. A majority of the Supreme Court ruled (in the Pentagon Papers according to Wikipedia) that the government could have prosecuted the NY Times and Washington Post if they had wanted to. So unless Assange is different from the NY Times (and being a foreign citizen is not different enough) he can be prosecuted.

        1. Aha! So, we could leak classified documents to foreign intelligence agencies, then file charges against them all! Their entire intelligence gathering apparatus will be wiped out.

        2. Well, crap, put everybody and their grandma in jail after the past few weeks of leaks.

        3. This is absolutely true. This has been all along a story about how far government goes now versus then. Then, not only NYT but Ellsberg was let off the hook. Imagine that today/

          Today the talk is assassination, rendition, prosecution, prosecuting any press at all, instead of the leaker.

          An eyebrow barely raised as to denial of service attacks, and pressure on paypal, Amazon, even his British lawyers. Culturally not the same America at all, not at all.

          Brutal scary stuff. Makes me scared to talk, even post my dumb comments here.

        4. This is absolutely true. This has been all along a story about how far government goes now versus then. Then, not only NYT but Ellsberg was let off the hook. Imagine that today/

          Today the talk is assassination, rendition, prosecution, prosecuting any press at all, instead of the leaker.

          An eyebrow barely raised as to denial of service attacks, and pressure on paypal, Amazon, even his British lawyers. Culturally not the same America at all, not at all.

          Brutal scary stuff. Makes me scared to talk, even post my dumb comments here.

    2. I would have no qualm about publishing Australian State Secrets

      But Americo-Australianian relations are at an all-time low.

    3. I see, legally, why Manning should be locked up/punished. However, from a moral standpoint I don’t think it’s very just.

      1. Anyone saying he’s a traitor is an idiot. Treason requires both malice and the primary intention of helping your enemies against your country.

        Manning probably thought he was exposing corruption and abuse and being a genuine whistleblower. Unless his goal was to help al Qaeda find critical targets and get sources killed, he should probably get a couple years for violating his contract to not release classified documents and nothing more.

        Let him be a lesson to government to cover their asses next time they have something critically secret to say. I still can’t fathom how it could be so easy to access that much information.

        1. Agreed. The “traitor” label is thrown around so much its ridiculous.

          A few days ago on CNN a couple of morons were laughing at Ron Paul for defending Wikileaks, and they said “everyone agrees Assange should be brought in for espionage or treason.” The ironic idiocy of their comments eluded them.

          Treason against Australia?

  17. Canadian television IS horrifyingly anti-American. As a former Canadian, it was horrifying to me, and this was back in the early 90s.

    Based on what I have seen it has only gotten worse.
    Americans are protrayed in Canadian popular culture in the most grotesque steroeotypes as boorish violent morons utterly brainwashed by cackling sinister capitalist billionaires. Pretty much how the progressive left sees them, except without the redeeming people power activism part. In the Canadian mind, Americans are all aggressive fat stupid assholes who would happily torture kittens for profit.

    1. Of course, if you ever see the crowd of Americans who cross the border into Niagara Falls every weekend, fat stupid assholes pretty much sums it up.

      (Spoken as one of said fat stupid assholes who crossed the border frequently for fun in Canada.)

      1. ‘fun in Canada’!?!?!?!?!?

        That’s like going to Congress to hear common sense.

        1. You forget that most provinces have a lower drinking age than 21. (and are less stabby than Tiujuana)

      2. Canadian ballet, eh?

    2. And yet, the people who peddle these stereotypes are usually the same people who proclaim the virtues of multiculturalism, diversity, and tolerance.

      Such people are, in fact, nasty hypocrites.

    3. the most grotesque steroeotypes as boorish violent morons

      So the Canadians watch Jersey Shore too?

  18. Making up a law to criminalize his behavior (like Mitch McConnell called for on the Sunday shows) is asinine.

    Also, grossly unconstitutional.

    Wikileaks is a publisher. The one article of the Bill of Rights that SCOTUS still has any regard for is freedom of the press.

    I keep expecting our press to snap out of its donut-induced coma and realize that these Congressholes are talking about criminalizing their businesses.

    1. In the Pentagon Papers case, the Supreme Court disagrees with you. At least according to Wikipedia. Don’t forget, the freedom of the press has never been absolute. There are restrictions such as libel.

  19. “Wikileaks is a publisher”

    But “publishing” stolen property is illegal.

    -Government “property” isn’t really property.

    If taxpayers funded it, nobody owns it?

    -Correct. You can put a cot in the Treasury Building and sleep there. It’s yours.

    And nobody’s.

    -Right.

    1. “But “publishing” stolen property is illegal.”

      No, it isn’t. Even publishing copyrighted material isn’t usually criminal, though you’ll probably get sued. Government docs aren’t copyrighted to begin with.

  20. usa- the assassins’ nation seeks to divide & conquer all nations and all peoples.

    ——————-

    Regarding the leaks,

    Well, USA-if you have done nothing wrong, then you have nothing to fear from the
    T R U T H.
    Be Set Free by admitting to ongoing & insufferable crimes against
    H U M A N I T Y .

    See if you can recognize some of your government leaders here:

    http://sosbeevfbi.com/statement.html

    http://www.sosbeevfbi.com/part4-worldinabo.html

    questions!
    GERAL SOSBEE(956)536-3103

  21. The little WikiLeaks casualties are everywhere:

    From the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, RCFP, (not a fan of WL), tiny change on its web site, the long standing name to one of its references databases softened:

    cut and paste: “Tapping Officials’ Secrets”
    This guide is now called the “Open Government Guide.”

    http://www.rcfp.org/readingroom/index.php

  22. One silver lining, WL may be killing RCFP’s shield law for ‘special’ little journalists.

    First Amendment, RCFP, deal with it like the rest of us.

  23. Correct me if I’m wrong, but is this the same Switzerland that had Roman Polansky, and just let him go?

    And now they’re after Assange for a half-assed sexual crime?

    Hmmm.

    Also, seems like odd timing to me. Especially considering our government officials have bombed other countries under the pretense that they were another (see: wikileaks leaked document).

    And now we are supposed to trust the same people that somehow Assange is a Interpol worthy criminal?

    I’m calling bullshit on all of this.

    1. The extradition paperwork was bungled by the county requesting extradition.

  24. I have a hard time getting all that excited about the Wikileaks thang and I probably fall further on the right than center.

    I do know that if this happened during Bush’s tenure, the lefties would be jumping up and down in glee.

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