Friday, April 12, 2019

Our property

"US Officials Rejoice That Assange is “Our Property”" (Anglin):
"The entire Trump presidency is now just a roving troupe of psychopathic clowns looking for people to stab in the back.

“We already stabbed every single one of our voters in the back, and really, really badly fucked our most prominent and devoted supporters – we’re going to have to start looking outside of the US for people we can stab in the back. What about that Wikileaks guy who helped us out by releasing all those Clinton emails? Is there some way we can really fuck that guy hard? Fucking him would also really make Hillary Clinton happy, which would drive yet another knife into the backs of our voters.”"
The Tulsi tweet (she's the real deal; as far as I can tell crickets from Yang, who is tweeting about Game of Thrones and the NBA):
"The purpose of arresting is to send a message to the people, especially journalists, to be quiet and don’t get out of line. If we, the people, allow the government to control us through fear, we are no longer free, we are no longer America."
Tweet (Art Superheroes):
 "So far I’ve seen and mention today. Until I hear from anyone else whose thrown their hat in the ring, I’m only voting for either of them."
"Ben Sasse vs. Tulsi Gabbard on Julian Assange" (Wallace).

"Jeremy Corbyn demands government opposes Julian Assange's extradition to US".  Note how the judge can't even be bothered to pretend to be unbiased!  He wants to go to the club for lunch and receive the accolades and slaps on the back from the upper class twits of the year congratulating him for putting it to Assange.  As unprofessional as a judge can be, and we can expect to see this kind of crap throughout the British 'legal' system.  All of them will be falling all over themselves in efforts to ignore the law to get Assange in the hands of the Assholians as quickly as possible.

I'm a little surprised to see this in USA Today:  "WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will be punished for embarrassing the DC establishment" (Turley).

Believe me, they are not going through all this so Assange can get a 5-year prison sentence.  They intend to kill him.  The Brits have already effectively taken judicial notice of this kind of thing.  "Lauri Love ruling 'sets precedent' for trying hacking suspects in UK" (Bowcott).

I note that their attempts to avoid legal issues involving journalism has caused them to frame the indictment in terms of an alleged conspiracy involving Manning's unauthorized computer access, but the thing has been so gingerly drafted it is questionable whether it describes a crime.  Of course, given the bias of British judges - who really all should be deeply ashamed of themselves - the actual niceties of the law are irrelevant.

The US has a sealed 'associated case' to spring on Assange after they use the conspiracy to hack passwords trick to get their hands on him.  You have to assume if, by some miracle, they get stalled before an honest British judge, they will trot out additional charges on which to base the extradition.

Though the weak charge, in a conspiracy with 'journalists' working hard, as usual, to deceive, may be intentional:  "The U.S. Government’s Indictment of Julian Assange Poses Grave Threats to Press Freedoms" (Greenwald/Lee) (note that they touch on, and greatly misconstrue to their benefit, the Reality Winner debacle, where the role of the Intercept seems to involve much more than bungling, and forms a disturbing pattern of burning sources, to the point that one could be forgiven for thinking they are a honeypot for catching whistleblowers!!!):
"The first crucial fact about the indictment is that its key allegation – that Assange did not merely receive classified documents from Chelsea Manning but tried to help her crack a password in order to cover her tracks – is not new. It was long known by the Obama DOJ and was explicitly part of Manning’s trial, yet the Obama DOJ – not exactly renowned for being stalwart guardians of press freedoms – concluded it could not and should not prosecute Assange because indicting him would pose serious threats to press freedom. In sum, today’s indictment contains no new evidence or facts about Assange’s actions; all of it has been known for years.
The other key fact being widely misreported is that the indictment accuses Assange of trying to help Manning obtain access to document databases to which she had no valid access: i.e., hacking rather than journalism. But the indictment alleges no such thing. Rather, it simply accuses Assange of trying to help Manning log into the Defense Department’s computers using a different user name so that she could maintain her anonymity while downloading documents in the public interest and then furnish them to WikiLeaks to publish.
In other words, the indictment seeks to criminalize what journalists are not only permitted but ethically required to do: take steps to help their sources maintain their anonymity. As long-time Assange lawyer Barry Pollack put it: “the factual allegations…boil down to encouraging a source to provide him information and taking efforts to protect the identity of that source. Journalists around the world should be deeply troubled by these unprecedented criminal charges.”
That’s why the indictment poses such a grave threat to press freedom. It characterizes as a felony many actions that journalists are not just permitted but required to take in order to conduct sensitive reporting in the digital age.
But because the DOJ issued a press release with a headline that claimed that Assange was accused of “hacking” crimes, media outlets mindlessly repeated this claim even though the indictment contains no such allegation. It merely accuses Assange of trying to help Manning avoid detection. That’s not “hacking.” That’s called a core obligation of journalism."


"The Defense Department computer that Manning used to download the documents which she then furnished to WikiLeaks was likely running the Windows operating system. It had multiple user accounts on it, including an account to which Manning had legitimate access. Each account is protected by a password, and Windows computers store a file that contains a list of usernames and password “hashes,” or scrambled versions of the passwords. Only accounts designated as “administrator,” a designation Manning’s account lacked, have permission to access this file.
The indictment suggests that Manning, in order to access this password file, powered off her computer and then powered it back on, this time booting to a CD running the Linux operating system. From within Linux, she allegedly accessed this file full of password hashes. The indictment alleges that Assange agreed to try to crack one of these password hashes, which, if successful, would recover the original password. With the original password, Manning would be able to log directly into that other user’s account, which – as the indictment puts it – “would have made it more difficult for investigators to identify Manning as the source of disclosures of classified information.”
Assange appears to have been unsuccessful in cracking the password. The indictment alleges that “Assange indicated that he had been trying to crack the password by stating that he had ‘no luck so far.’”
Thus, even if one accepts all of the indictment’s claims as true, Assange was not trying to hack into new document files to which Manning had no access but rather trying to help Manning avoid detection as a source. For that reason, the precedent that this case would set would be a devastating blow to investigative journalists and press freedom everywhere.
Journalists have an ethical obligation to take steps to protect their sources from retaliation, which sometimes includes granting them anonymity and employing technical measures to help ensure that their identity is not discovered. When journalists take source protection seriously, they strip metadata and redact information from documents before publishing them if that information could have been used to identify their source; they host cloud-based systems such as SecureDrop, now employed by dozens of major newsrooms around the world, that make it easier and safer for whistleblowers, who may be under surveillance, to send messages and classified documents to journalists without their employers knowing; and they use secure communication tools like Signal, and set them to automatically delete messages.
But today’s indictment of Assange seeks to criminalize exactly these types of source-protection efforts, as it states that “it was part of the conspiracy that Assange and Manning used a special folder on a cloud drop box of WikiLeaks to transmit classified records containing information related to the national defense of the United States.”"
Moreno is an American (CIA) sleeper agent, in place even while he was in Correa's cabinet, a traitor biding his time until he could undo all of Correa's good works: "Who is Lenin Moreno and why did he hand Assange over to British police?"

"Yet Another Conspiracy Theory Died Today" (Durden) (also):
"It bears repeating, given the nearly past three years of 'Russiagate' collusion hysteria which focused heavily and uncritically on the role of WikiLeaks in both Hillary's defeat and the rise of Trump, and centrally the "Russian connection" supposedly tying it all together: there seems yet more daily and weekly evidence demonstrating how absurd the claims were and are.
With Thursday's dramatic UK arrest of WikiLeaks founder and leader Julian Assange, revealed to be based largely on a US extradition request, which we've all now learned has been pursued for the past two years by the Trump Department of Justice, another conspiracy theory bites the dust. Journalist Aaron Maté points out "over the last 2 years, just as Maddow et al were feverishly speculating that Trump and Assange secretly conspired, Trump's DOJ was secretly trying to extradite Assange.""
Tweet (stefania maurizi):
"the book Julian was keeping during his arrest is NOT a present from Roger Stone. Complete BULLSHIT! I gave that gorgerous book ( 's "The History of the National Security State") as a present to Julian in 2016"
In case anybody missed the signal - Assange can't know whether his signal went out to the appropriate people - he was seen reading the same book in the dock (curious they haven't taken it from him).
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