Big Brother’s Virtual Reality - By Linh Dinh – Postcards from the End of [the] America[n Empire] – June 23, 2016 A billboard for Comcast pitches a lineup of “reality” shows, with this cap...
40 minutes ago
"For more than six months, Wired's Senior Editor Kevin Poulsen has possessed - but refuses to publish - the key evidence in one of the year's most significant political stories: the arrest of U.S. Army PFC Bradley Manning for allegedly acting as WikiLeaks' source. In late May, Adrian Lamo - at the same time he was working with the FBI as a government informant against Manning - gave Poulsen what he purported to be the full chat logs between Manning and Lamo in which the Army Private allegedly confessed to having been the source for the various cables, documents and video that WikiLeaks released throughout this year. In interviews with me in June, both Poulsen and Lamo confirmed that Lamo placed no substantive restrictions on Poulsen with regard to the chat logs: Wired was and remains free to publish the logs in their entirety.and:
Despite that, on June 10, Wired published what it said was only "about 25 percent" of those logs, excerpts that it hand-picked. For the last six months, Poulsen has not only steadfastly refused to release any further excerpts, but worse, has refused to answer questions about what those logs do and do not contain. This is easily one of the worst journalistic disgraces of the year: it is just inconceivable that someone who claims to be a 'journalist' - or who wants to be regarded as one - would actively conceal from the public, for months on end, the key evidence in a political story that has generated headlines around the world."
"Poulsen's concealment of the chat logs is actively blinding journalists and others who have been attempting to learn what Manning did and did not do. By allowing the world to see only the fraction of the Manning-Lamo chats that he chose to release, Poulsen has created a situation in which his long-time "source," Adrian Lamo, is the only source of information for what Manning supposedly said beyond those published exceprts. Journalists thus routinely print Lamo's assertions about Manning's statements even though - as a result of Poulsen's concealment - they are unable to verify whether Lamo is telling the truth. Due to Poulsen, Lamo is now the one driving many of the media stories about Manning and WikiLeaks even though Lamo (a) is a convicted felon, (b) was (as Poulsen strangely reported at the time) involuntarily hospitalized for severe psychiatric distress a mere three weeks before his chats with Manning, and (c) cannot keep his story straight about anything from one minute to the next.
To see how odious Poulsen's concealment of this evidence is, consider this December 15 New York Times article by Charlie Savage, which reports that the DOJ is trying to prosecute WikiLeaks based on the theory that Julian Assange "encouraged or even helped" Manning extract the classified information. Savage extensively quotes Lamo claiming that Manning told him all sorts of things about WikiLeaks and Assange that are not found in the portions of the chat logs published by Wired . . . ."
"Let's consider what this means based just on these facts. First, for the first several weeks after the story of Manning's arrest, it was Wired that was exclusively reporting on the relevant facts by virtue of Poulsen's close relationship with Lamo. Yet at no point -- through today -- have Poulsen or Wired ever bothered to disclose that the person who "helped to turn over [Manning] to the FBI and Army intelligence" is (a) the same person who put Poulsen is prison for several years, (b) a regular contributor to Wired and (c) a long-time associate and source for Poulsen. Just on journalistic grounds, this nondisclosure is extraordinary (Poulsen even wrote a long article about Uber's role in pressuring Lamo to inform to the Government without once mentioning Rasch). As Poulsen was writing about this Manning story all while working closely with Lamo as he served as FBI informant -- and as Poulsen actively conceals the chat logs -- wouldn't you want to know that the person who played such a key role in Manning's arrest was the same person who prosecuted Poulsen and regularly contributes to his magazine?"Unbelievable! Greenwald deserves some kind of award for putting this together.
"According to the document Yadlin said a Hamas takeover would be a positive step, because Israel would then be able to declare Gaza as a hostile entity.This is complete confirmation of one of the most important 'anti-Semitic' conspiracy theories. Of course, using the Palestinians to provide policing for Israel in the West Bank, and the 'Cast Iron' attack on the civilians of Gaza, just follow as part of the plans of the Jews.
A few days later, his prediction came true as Hamas took control of the Strip.
The American ambassador noted that if Fatah loses control of the Strip, Abbas would be urged to form a separate government in the West Bank.
Yadlin responded by saying that such developments would please Israel, because the IDF would not have to deal with Hamas as a stateless body. He also added that Israel would be able to cooperate with a Fatah-controlled West Bank."
"MFA Middle East Director (Assistant"You think you've got time, but you don't."
Secretary-equivalent) Patrice Paoli informed POL Minister
Counselor June 18 that Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak
told French officials in Paris June 15 that the Israelis have
a "secret accord" with the USG to continue the "natural
growth" of Israeli settlements in the West Bank."
"Only the terminally naive could believe that the US Justice Department did not order the Swedish government to mobilize Interpol into producing a lightning-fast arrest warrant linked to the syrupy broken condom/"sex by surprise" saga.
All across the land of the free, the emperor has been pulling a Beijing (one may say emperors are all alike), deploying a variety of methods to actually censor the net - and TV - and dispatch the cables to digital oblivion. Some methods are worthy of the Three Stooges: the US Air Force blacking out from its computers anything linked to "cablegate"; the Pentagon banning anyone from even looking at newspapers.
Other methods are slightly more refined. Assange won the readers' poll as Time magazine's Person of the Year. But the editors could not possibly have the guts to respect public opinion and infuriate the emperor even more. So they gave the prize to an autistic geek who invented Facebook because his girlfriend dumped him.""WikiLeaks: Swedish government 'hid' anti-terror operations with America from Parliament":
"'The new revelations contained in the Swedish cables … shed some light on the ferocity of the Swedish prosecutorial process in this case.'"The Swedes pretend to be neutral but are secretly rabid American imperialists.
"The history of the way it [the case] has been dealt with by the Swedish prosecutors would give Mr Assange some basis that he might be acquitted following a trial."It now appears that the latest outrage, the appeal of bail, may be the work of British prosecutors and not the fucking Swedes, although it is probably more accurate to see it all as part of a world-wide conspiracy of craven American lackeys.
"One of the many ironies of the WikiLeaks saga seems to be the inadvertent confirmation that the United States is truly the indispensable nation. It is the political refuge of last resort. It is the ultimate truth-teller. Its political clout reverberates in the politics of its host nations. And all of this just at the moment when Americans are being told by their own pundits that their day of imperial dominance is over. Apparently not quite yet.
What a bitter pill for Mr. Assange."Of course, part of this is true. It is indeed remarkable how each county defers to American power. Satraps prostrating themselves before the Caliph. Each of them acting without knowledge of how silly it looks, especially when seen in the whole range of cables. That's why the State Department is so freaked out. American power depends entirely on everybody believing in American power. Once the silliness is revealed, much of the power disappears. Those same lackeys will be terrified that their attitude towards the Americans will come back to haunt them. The era of embarrassing fealty to the American Empire is ending, and Wikileaks can take some credit for that. There is a bitter pill, but it is not for Mr. Assange.
". . . Richard Clarke . . . said that the US government has had an 'iPatriot Act' sitting in a drawer, ready to go at a moment's notice whenever there was 'an i-9/11 event.'
Except there's been no such event.""Funding illegal Israeli settlements? Priceless.":
"Visa, Mastercard and PayPal all enable donations to be made to US-registered groups funding illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank in defiance of international law."Death Squads versus Democracy"
It appears at least one of the major credit cards also enables donations to an extremist Jewish group that has placed a bounty on the lives of Palestinians.
All three have in the last week ceased enabling donations to WikiLeaks. Neither Mastercard nor Visa have explained the basis for their decision to do so. PayPal has backed away from its initial claim that the US State Department told PayPal WikiLeaks had broken the law after the claim was discredited. This is the third occasion on which PayPal has suspended payment services for WikiLeaks."
"Israeli officials on Tuesday canceled a ceremony planned to honor the Palestinian firemen who assisted in battling the Carmel fire last week, after a number of crew members were refused permits to cross the border.
Palestinian Fire Services Commander Ahmed Rizik said that he and his staff were surprised to learn when they arrived at the checkpoint that only seven out of the 10 fireman would be granted entry into Israel, although all of them had been allowed in at the time of the disaster."
"Even though the name of the new organization is called ‘Open’ Leaks, they will be far from as “open” as WikiLeaks ever was. The plan is to allow for leaked documents to be submitted. However, these documents will not be published to the public. Instead they will be distributed to other news agencies and outlets for them to decide what is appropriate, legal, and constitutional to publish."This looks like an intelligence operation. Wikileaks has the correct model; OpenLeaks is a dangerous step towards loss of openness and secret control of information, what Wikileaks is trying to break down. John Young has it backwards - the 'competitors' are more likely to be corrupt. The way intelligence operations will deal with Wikileaks is to flood the internet with disinformation.
"Wikileaks began on Sunday November 28th publishing 251,287 leaked United States embassy cables, the largest set of confidential documents ever to be released into the public domain. The documents will give people around the world an unprecedented insight into US Government foreign activities.They plan to release them all. Considering the enormous effect of the releases so far, we're in for an entertaining few months.
The cables, which date from 1966 up until the end of February this year, contain confidential communications between 274 embassies in countries throughout the world and the State Department in Washington DC. 15,652 of the cables are classified Secret.
The embassy cables will be released in stages over the next few months. The subject matter of these cables is of such importance, and the geographical spread so broad, that to do otherwise would not do this material justice."
"I've heard people voicing suspicions about this. Have the Israel cables been suppressed, they ask.
The answer, apparently, is no. There's little or nothing from Israel in the 250,000 or so documents – and the explanation, I'm told by someone who ought to know, is very simple.
Israel, in the eyes of the US diplomats, is not a normal country like any other and so it's not dealt with in the normal way. Sensitive documents from Israel go through different channels – to the White House rather than the State Department – and are therefore not among the batch leaked to Julian Assange."We won't get memos out of this batch on the Gaza slaughter or the Marmara slaughter - the timing is wrong, as the leaks peter out towards the end of 2009 - but some information on Israel did leak out: the Americans receive their orders from their Bosses.
"The problem is not the manipulation of WikiLeaks by any foreign intelligence service but, in effect, the manipulation by key players in the mainstream media, in America especially, of the material WikiLeaks is providing.""On the Historical Necessity of Wikileaks" by Lawrence Davidson.
"U.S. drugmaker Pfizer (PFE.N) hired investigators to find evidence of corruption against the Nigerian attorney general to convince him to drop legal action against the company over a drug trial involving children, the Guardian newspaper reported, citing U.S. diplomatic cables made public by WikiLeaks."This is the way the world actually works but we rarely see any evidence of it.
"Sweden’s false charges against Mr Assange are not the first time that country has collaborated with aggressors. When the Nazis wanted to seize Norway’s heavy water production plant for their nuclear research, Sweden announced that it was neutral and allowed the Germans to roll straight through the country to Norway. Just ask the Norwegians at the present time about their opinion of Sweden. Those were the days when Britain fought armed aggression rather than supported it."
"But things didn't turn out as Assange hoped. The unintended consequence of his actions is that he managed to make Sweden look like a country that's governed by congenital idiots and populated with nothing but crazy sluts and lawyers. And don't get me started about the quality of their condoms.
To be fair, I don't know if Assange's alleged broken condom is because the product was defective. We have good evidence that Assange has the world's biggest set of nuts, so assuming some degree of proportionality, he'd put a strain on any brand of condom that didn't have rebar ribs.
Assange had a lot of help making Sweden look like the last place on Earth that you would want to take your penis. The aforementioned megahit movie, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, makes the place look like a snow-filled ass cave that Jeffrey Dahmer lived in before he got a raise. (It's a good movie otherwise.)
If you haven't read any background about the so-called rape charges against Assange, you really should. Apparently Swedish laws are unique. If you have a penis, you're half a rapist before you even get through customs. And if your condom breaks, that's jail time. What I'm saying is that the Club Med in Sweden is a nervous place."
"Police contacted Mr Stephens last night after receiving a fresh European Arrest Warrant from the Swedish authorities.
The first warrant, issued last month, was not valid as officials had failed to fill in the form properly."The delay was almost certainly about worries over the 'insurance' file (and no, poseurs, not the Rothschilds).
"Poulsen insinuates that the struggles with domain names, hosting and DNS servers shows bungling on the part of the wikileakers, but I don't really believe that; I think it has been deliberate.Wilikeaks is a hologram, breaking up into innumerable little pieces each containing the same information. The shattering was planned.
After all, what has been the net result of the affair? A swarm. Not only did WikiLeaks itself set up numerous other domains to host cablegate, but people all over the globe have been busy setting up mirror sites, pointing their domains towards WikiLeaks and so on, a reported 100,000 people have downloaded the "insurance file" which contains all the un-redacted cables plus some more goodies, the released cables have also been made available as a package for easy download – in other words: it is now 200% sure that this cache of secret documents will never ever go away again and for those who seek to stop the leak the only possible outcome is that things will get much worse.
There is even, as we speak, set up a page (don't know by whom) to allow anyone who owns a website to allow for a mirror to be set up under that domain by just filling a form and adding a subdomain to your domain (not sure how safe that procedure actually is).
All this points to grand strategic thinking. With WikiLeaks now being hosted by a swarm of people around the globe, these volunteers are now part of WikiLeaks themselves – the emerging WikiLeaks tribe – plus releasing new cables becomes a simple matter of syncing all the mirrors, and the distribution of the material is now invulnerable to any kind of attack or regulatory oversight, no matter how much they whine about it in France or the US.
With the infrastructure now firmly in place and bullet-proof and the hype-hungry mainstream media waiting to be fed, the stage is set for further releases of classified cables, probably even more damaging than the ones we've already seen. And then the Bank of America files. And then who knows what.
By that time the "conspiracy" will be crumbling under the relentless attacks of this open source insurgency – our insurgency, really. So that we can build something new, from the bottom up, to replace it."
"In short, according to these papers, the US's main interest in the Middle East for over seven decades - oil (particularly control over oil production and distribution) -- has little relevance to this conflict. And the struggle for hegemony in the region has little to do with geopolitical interests - rather, it is rooted in religious and ethnic divisions.
In place of concrete analysis, we get an Islamophobic cliché which is based on the assumption that the roots of all (or most) actions by Arab states lie in Islam. If this reductionism is applied to Arab nations, it is also applied to Iran as I show below.
What such explanations obscure is the real historical and political relationship between the US, Israel, and various US Arab allies.
In the case of the Gulf monarchies, which have long allied themselves closely with imperial nations (first Britain and then the US), control over oil resources trumps all other concerns. For instance, the so-called "special relationship" between the US and Saudi Arabia is based on oil for security: the US needs to control oil in the region in order to be a global hegemon, and Saudi Arabia needs the US to shore up its defense capabilities in order to put down both external and internal threats to the rule of the Al Saud family.
Iran, since the fall of the US-backed Shah in 1979, has been seen as an external threat. Saudi Arabia therefore buys billions of dollars worth of military equipment from the US and has been the backbone of the US defense industry.
Internal threats are all struggles that have the potential to disrupt the "special relationship" by threatening the control of the Al Saud family. Thus, movements for workers' rights, women's rights, and democratic reform have been squashed by the ruling family, with the approval and help of the US. When workers went on strike in the oil regions in the 1940s and 50s, the Al Saud family, with the assistance of the US oil company ARAMCO, ruthlessly suppressed the strikers and jailed, deported, or assassinated its leadership. When women staged a "drive-in" in the early 1990s to seek greater rights for women, they were stripped of their passports and fired from their jobs.
These actions were not driven by "Islam." Rather, both the US and the Al Saud family (as well as the ruling families in other Gulf states) have little tolerance for democratic movements, fearing rightly that such actions will result in elevating the will of the people over theirs, which could upset the oil for security status quo.
And indeed, the will of the people does stand in opposition to the aforementioned leaders on the question of Iran.
In contrast to the hostility expressed by the leadership, a recent poll carried out by the Brookings Institution finds that regular people in several Arab nations don't see Iran as a major threat. Instead, 88% identified Israel as the biggest threat, followed closely by the US (77%). A whooping 10% identified Iran as a threat to their interests. So much for the historic Sunni-Shia enmity and Arab-Persian rivalry!
Additionally, in contrast again to the views held by the leadership, 75% of ordinary people were opposed to international efforts to pressure Iran to curtail its nuclear program, stating that they believed that Iran had a right to its nuclear program. 57% even think that it would be positive development for the region if Iran acquired nuclear weapons.
It is therefore not surprising that the US's Arab allies are not willing to publicly criticize Iran or offer open support for US efforts to "cut off the head of the snake." What this poll reveals is not only the contrasting views held by the Arab public and the leadership, but also that the majority of Arabs don't see the world through the US/Israeli prism that is taken for granted by the corporate media.""Swiss army knives as a danger to Arab regimes"
"Annoying as it may be, the DDoS seems to be good publicity (if anything, it adds to your credibility). So is getting kicked out of AWS. Do you agree with this statement? Were you planning for it? Thank you for doing what you are doing.
Julian Assange: Since 2007 we have been deliberately placing some of our servers in jurisdictions that we suspected suffered a free speech deficit in order to separate rhetoric from reality. Amazon was one of these cases."Amazon's convoluted attempt at explaining itself.
"A diplomatic cable from last February released by WikiLeaks provides a detailed account of how Russian specialists on the Iranian ballistic-missile program refuted the United States suggestion that Iran has missiles that could target European capitals, or intends to develop such a capability.Absolutely spectacular, over-the-top, warmongering lying, with the added fillip that they blame the Obama Administration for their inability to display the source information which would immediately demonstrate their vile and bloody trickery! A tip of the hat to them. Will the gentiles be fooled, based on lies from the Jew-controlled media, into fighting another War For The Jews, again at ruinous cost?
In fact, the Russians challenged the very existence of the mystery missile the US claims Iran acquired from North Korea. But readers of the two leading US newspapers never learned those key facts about the document.
The New York Times and Washington Post reported only that the United States believed Iran had acquired such missiles - supposedly called the BM-25 - from North Korea. Neither newspaper reported the detailed Russian refutation of the US view of the issue, or the lack of hard evidence for the BM-25 from the US side.
The Times, which had obtained the diplomatic cables not from WikiLeaks but from The Guardian, according to a Washington Post story on Monday, did not publish the text of the cable.
The Times story said the newspaper had made the decision not to publish "at the request of the Obama administration". That meant that its readers could not compare the highly distorted account of the document in the Times story against the original document without searching the WikiLeaks website.
As a result, a key WikiLeaks document, which should have resulted in stories calling into question the thrust of the Obama administration's ballistic-missile defense policy in Europe based on an alleged Iranian missile threat, has produced a spate of stories supporting the existing-Iranian-threat narrative."