TBR News December 11, 2010

Dec 11 2010

The Voice of the White House


          Washington, D.C. December 10, 2010: “There has been an enormous flood of the so-called ‘WikiLeaks’ intercepted secret American cables. No one knows just who has what section of this massive trove of hitherto secret papers but the rage of the American government is tempered by the fact that it is totally impossible for them to shut this away from public viewing.

As expected, the obedient American media has rushed to inform their dwindling readers that after all, these are really old papers and not important and, even more important, the American public trusts its government and its agencies and think the WikiLeaks papers ought to be “removed from the Internet.”

Ah, yes, His Master’s Voice as we used to see on old phonograph records. In fact, the sporadic release of these papers only reinforces the strongly held views of the bulk of Americans that their government is a aggregation of greedy politicians and brutal and sadistic guardians. Faith in the government, in a recent and very private White House poll is about 5% positive.

Of course, our press does as it’s told but herewith are two very simple examples of what is emerging from what is little more than a governmental cesspit. Some of these are up here, some there and some not at all. The New York Times has copies of all of these but never release anything unless they check with both Washington and Langley first.

His Master’s Voice indeed!

AN hysterical President Obama wants to “totally shut down” the entire Internet to prevent problems that will no doubt cost him his job but doing that would create havoc beyond belief and will never happen. Maybe he can attend a few more public rallies and cheer everyone up.

And what happens, WikiLeaks aside, when the public finds out that they don’t own their own homes (thanks to George Bush and his crooked associates) and the government can do absolutely nothing about it. We are now living in interesting times, indeed1’


Message Dec 23. 2009      









¶1. (S/NF)  The Central Intelligence people in Tel Aviv, are making an urgent request that a Yemini Jew, one Moshe Yakub, 42, formerly a resident of Raida in Yemen and latterly a resident of Tel Aviv be given a new American identity and sent to the United States by secure, government transportation.

¶2. (S/NF) Subject has posed as an Arab for five years and during that time, has done what has been called “excellent undercover” work for the Israeli Mossad. Yakub has passed for a radical Muslim whose expertese are explosive devices.

¶3.`(S/NF) Posing as a member of a radical wing of Hezbollah, Yakub and three fellow Yemeni Jews prepared a large explosive device which was placed in a vehicle which was parked on a street by the St. George Hotel in the Lebanese capital, Beirut and subsequently detonated on 14 February, 2005 killing their target, former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic Baha El Deen Al-Hariri and many members of his staff and bodyguards.

¶4. (S/NF) This was a Mossad false-flag operation, designed to incriminate Hezbollah and the Syrian government as the perpetrtors. Also, the Beirut section of the CIA were extensively involved in the preparation of this incident.

¶5. (S/NF) Yakub now feels that his usefulness to the Mossad and other Israeli institutions is an end, primarily because of his guilty knowledge. He fears that the Mossad will terminate him to ensure his silence.

¶6. (S/NF) Because of subject’s former connections with US interests, it is felt that he should be given a new, official, identity and moved to an area in the US where he can be supervised and, essentially, kept from discussing his previous activities.

¶7. (S/NF) Yakub has a wife and one child and it is requested   that they be allowed to accompany him in his relocation.


          Message May 15, 2009



DE RUEHTV #1098/01 1351414

ZNR UUUUU ZZH (CCY AD66A605 MSI9229-632)

R 151414Z MAY 09 ZDS















E.O. 12958:N/A





¶1. (SBU) Organized crime (OC) has longstanding roots in Israel, butin recent years there has been a sharp increase in the reach andimpact of OC networks. In seeking a competitive advantage in suchlucrative trades as narcotics and prostitution, Israeli crime groupshave demonstrated their ability and willingness to engage in violentattacks on each other with little regard for innocent bystanders.

The Israeli National Police (INP) and the courts have engaged in a vigorous campaign against organized crime leaders, including the creation of a new specialized anti-OC unit, but they remain unable to cope with the full scope of the problem. Organized crime in Israel now has global reach, with direct impact inside the United States. Post is currently utilizing all available tools to deny Israeli OC figures access to the United States in order to prevent them from furthering their criminal activities on U.S. soil. End


Crime War Hits the Streets of Israel


¶2. (SBU) In November 2008, Israeli crime boss Yaakov Alperon was assassinated in broad daylight in a gruesome attack on the streets of Tel Aviv, only about a mile away from the Embassy. According to several media accounts, a motor scooter pulled up alongside Alperon’s car and the rider attached a sophisticated explosive device with a remote detonator to the car door. The bomb killed Alperon and his driver, and injured two innocent pedestrians. The hit was the latest in a series of violent attacks and reprisals, andindicated a widening crime war in Israel.

¶3. In July 2008, a 31-year-old Israeli woman was killed by a stray bullet on the beach in Bat Yam in front of her husband and two children during a failed assassination attempt on noted crime figure Rami Amira. In a feud between the Abutbul and Shirazi clans, crime boss Shalom “Charlie” Abutbul was shot by two gunmen in September 2008, an attack that also wounded three bystanders. In December 2008, Charlie Abutbul’s son-in-law, Nati Ohayon, was gunned down in his car in Netanya. Before the fatal bombing of his car, Alperon himself had survived at least three previous attempts on his life before his assassination, and was engaged in an ongoing feud with the rival Abergil clan (although there are numerous suspects in Alperon’s murder). The day after Alperon’s death, two members of the Abergil syndicate were sentenced for conspiring to kill Alperon’s brother, Nissim, in May 2008.

¶4. (SBU) In response to rising concerns for public safety, former Prime Minister Olmert convened an emergency meeting of top law enforcement officials, cabinet members, and prosecutors in December ¶2008. He promised to add 1,000 officers to the INP and to allocate approximately NIS 340 million (USD 81 million) to improve the INP’s technical capabilities. In general, the rise in OC-related violence has led some public figures to call for emergency state powers toattack criminal organizations, and OC became a minor but importantissue in the February 2009 Knesset elections. Former Labor Party MK Ephraim Sneh publicly decried criminal extortion in his campaign ads, only to have his car torched in apparent retaliation outside his home in Herzliya.



¶5. (SBU) Organized criminal activity is not a new phenomenon in

Israel, and major crime families are well known to the Israeli

public (the Alperons even featured in a recent reality television

program). Five or six crime families have traditionally dominated

OC in Israel, although the names and makeup of these syndicates  have fluctuated in recent years. The Abergil, Abutbul, Alperon, and Rosenstein organizations are among the most well known, but recent arrests and assassinations have created a power vacuum at the top.New names such as Mulner, Shirazi, Cohen and Domrani have movedquickly to fill the gap. Other up-and-coming groups include the Harari, Ohana, and Kdoshim families. There are also a number of rival families active in the underworld of Israel’s Arab sector.

¶6. (SBU) Traditional OC activities in Israel include illegal

neighborhood casinos, prostitution rings, extortion, and loan

sharking, with each family controlling a different geographic

region. The Alperon family, for instance, dominates the Sharon

region, while the Abutbul operation is based in the coastal city of Netanya. The focus is largely on easy money guaranteed by the

limited use of violence. Criminal involvement in the recycling

business, for example, has been well covered in the press. OC

families collect bottles illegally from municipal recycling bins and restaurants, return them at the collection centers claiming twice the actual numbers, and pocket the change for millions in profits.

Not Your Grandfather’s Mob


¶7. (SBU) Despite their notoriety, OC figures have generally been viewed as a nuisance to be handled by local police. Law enforcement resources were directed to more existential security threats from terrorists and enemy states. In recent years, however, the rules of the game have changed. According to xxxxx, the old school of Israel OC is giving way to a new, more violent, breed of crime. xxxxx told conoffs that the new style of

crime features knowledge of hi-tech explosives acquired from service in the Israeli Defense Forces, and a willingness to use

indiscriminate violence, at least against rival gang leaders. New

OC business also includes technology-related crimes, such as stock market and credit card fraud, and operates on a global scale.

¶8. (SBU) As the reach of Israeli OC has grown, so have the stakes. Crime families are working further from home and exporting violence abroad. Older gambling schemes have grown to include sprawling casino franchises in Eastern Europe. The Abutbul family began its gambling business in Romania over a decade ago, and now owns the Europe-wide Casino Royale network. In 2002, Israeli OC turf wars spilled into Europe when Yaakov Abergil and Felix Abutbul were killed two months apart. Abutbul was gunned down in front of his casino in Prague in a show of force by the Abergils as they attempted to capture a portion of the European gambling market.

¶9. (SBU) Israeli OC now plays a significant role in the global drug trade, providing both a local consumer market and an important transit point to Europe and the United States. In 2004, Zeev Rosenstein was arrested in Israel for possession of 700,000 ecstasy tablets in his New York apartment, destined for distribution in the U.S. market. He was ultimately extradited to the United States in 2006, where he is currently serving a 12-year prison sentence. Two other crime figures, Meir Abergil and Israel Ozifa, are also facing U.S. extradition charges on charges that include smuggling 100,000 ecstasy tablets into the United States.

¶10. (SBU) The prostitution business has also grown beyond the

neighborhood brothel. In March 2009, the INP arrested twelve

suspects in what is believed to be the largest Israeli-led human

trafficking network unearthed to date. Ring leader Rami Saban and

his associates were charged with smuggling thousands of women from the former Soviet Union and forcing them to work as prostitutes in Israel, Cyprus, Belgium, and Great Britain. Some women were flown to Egypt and smuggled across the Sinai border by Bedouins.

Law Enforcement Steps up the Pressure


¶11. (SBU) After years of perceived inaction, in 2008 the INP

created a new unit called Lahav 433. The elite unit operates under the direct command of the police commissioner, and is charged specifically with infiltrating and eliminating Israel’s major crime syndicates. Lahav 433 also cooperates closely with district investigative units to combat smaller criminal organizations, many of which are aligned with the larger crime families.

¶12. (SBU) Following Alperon’s assassination, the INP initiated a series of raids that led to the arrests of a number of leading crime figures. Among their targets were Aviv and Adam Abutbul, sons of crime-family head Charlie Abutbul, both charged with possession of illegal weapons. (A third brother, Francois, is already facing murder charges for a nightclub killing in 2004.) Police also arrested gangland figure Amir Mulner for weapons possession and onspiracy to commit a crime. Mulner is known to be an explosives expert by army training, and is a suspect in Yaakov Alperon’s murder. He is also believed to be managing affairs for Rosenstein while the latter serves his sentence in the United States.

¶13. (SBU) Yaakov Alperon’s brother Nissim was arrested with 18

others in December 2008, in what was reported to be a “mafia

meeting” in a Tel Aviv-area caf. According to the Jerusalem Post,

the group may have been planning a revenge attack for his brother’s recent assassination. Alperon’s son Dror, recently dismissed from his army service for disorderly behavior, also faces several counts of assault and was convicted on extortion charges. Also in December, police in Netanya launched several raids on illegal gambling houses and the homes of suspected money launderers with ties to the crime families. In Ashdod, brothers Roni and David Harari were arrested on charges of extortion. Regional police stuck a blow against the Jerusalem Gang, and convicted its leader Itzik Bar Muha.

Skepticism Hovers Over GOI Efforts


¶14. (SBU)xxxxx told conoffs that

“thousands of foot soldiers” remain active on the streets despite

these aggressive anti-OC operations. He noted that approximately

2,000 people attended Alperon’s very public funeral. xxxxx

expressed skepticism that recent arrests will bear fruit in the long term without a sustained commitment to enforcement. He noted that many of the crime leaders remain active while in prison and their operations are not hampered significantly even when they are convicted and jailed.

¶15. (SBU) In December 2008, former Prime Minister Olmert himself admitted that efforts to combat OC have long been diluted among different agencies, and that INP technology lags far behind that allocated to security services for counterterrorism. Given the recent change in government and the current economic crisis, thereis public skepticism as to whether GOI promises to remedy the situation will be fulfilled. In 2003, following a failed

assassination attempt on Rosenstein, then Prime Minister Ariel

Sharon made similar promises to commit manpower and resources to

combating the problem.

¶16. (SBU) It is not entirely clear to what extent OC elements havepenetrated the Israeli establishment and corrupted public officials.The INP insists that such instances are rare, despite theoccasional revelation of crooked police officers in the press.

Nevertheless, there have been several dramatic revelations in recent years that indicate a growing problem. In 2004, former government minister Gonen Segev was arrested for trying to smuggle thousands of ecstasy pills into Israel, a case that produced considerable circumstantial evidence of his involvement in OC. The election of Inbal Gavrieli to the Knesset in 2003 as a member of Likud raised concerns about OC influence in the party’s Central Committee.Gavrieli is the daughter of a suspected crime boss, and she attempted to use her parliamentary immunity to block investigations into her father’s business. (Gavrieli is no longer a member of the Knesset.) Just last month, Israeli politicos and OC figures came together for the funeral of Likud party activist Shlomi Oz, who served time in prison in the 1990s for extortion on behalf of the Alperon family. Among those in attendance was Omri Sharon, son of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who was himself convicted in 2006 on illegal fundraising charges unrelated to OC.

Courts Testing New Powers


¶17. (SBU) In 2003, the GOI passed anti-OC legislation that carries a maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment for heading a criminal organization and three years for working in such an organization. The law defines such a body as a group of people working in an “organized, methodical and ongoing pattern to commit offenses that are defined by the laws of Israel as crimes.” The law also allows for property forfeiture, both in the wake of conviction and in cases where it is proven to belong to a criminal organization.

¶18. (SBU) Until recently, xxxxx, judges and lawyers have been

slow to make use of this authority, and are hampered by a lack of

resources, insufficient understanding of the tools at their

disposal, and reticence to mete out tough sentences. A witness

protection program for those who testify against OC is just now

getting off the ground, and is not backed by any specific

legislation. Nevertheless, on March 16th, a Tel Aviv district court took the important step of sentencing 14 convicted criminals belonging to two mob organizations in Ramle and Jaffa to up to 27 years in prison.

¶19. (SBU) Increased efforts by Israeli authorities to combat OC

have engendered retaliatory threats of violence. Recent press

reports indicate that as many as 10 Israeli judges are currently

receiving 24-hour protection by the police against the threat of

violence from members of crime organizations. Israeli OC appears  to be intent on intimidating judges personally, as a way of influencing the legal process. Judges in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and Haifa have been assigned police protection, underscoring the depth of the problem.

Israeli Crime Reaches American Shores


¶20. (SBU) Israel’s multi-ethnic population provides a deep well of opportunity for Israeli OC to expand into new territory. Most

Israeli crime families trace their roots to North Africa or Eastern Europe, and many of their Israeli operatives hold foreign passports allowing them to move freely in European countries, most of which participate in the visa waiver program with the United States. Approximately one million Russians moved to Israel following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, and Russian citizens no longer require visas to enter Israel. Many Russian oligarchs of Jewish origin and Jewish members of OC groups have received Israeli citizenship, or at least maintain residences in the country. Little is known about the full extent of Russian criminal activity in Israel, but sources in the police estimate that Russian OC has laundered as much as USD 10 billion through Israeli holdings. While most Israeli OC families are native-born and the stereotype that Russian immigrants tend to be mobsters is greatly overblown, indigenous OC groups routinely employ “muscle” from the former Soviet Union.

¶21. (SBU) The profit motive serves as a great unifier among

Israel’s diverse demographic groups. According to xxxxx, some

Amsterdam-based Hasidic groups allegedly are implicated in

international drug smuggling through links to Israeli OC. Arab and Jewish Israeli criminals routinely cooperate and form alliances to expand control of lucrative drug, car theft and extortion rackets. Even hostile and closed borders pose few obstacles to OC groups.According to the INP, 43% of intercepted heroin in 2008 was smuggled from Lebanon, 37% from Jordan, and 12% from Egypt.

Israeli OC Operating Freely in United States


¶22. (SBU) Given the volume of travel and trade between the United States and Israel, it is not surprising that Israeli OC has also gained a foothold in America. Over the last decade, media reports have detailed a number of high-profile cases involving Israeli  OC, ranging from large-scale drug deals to murder. The ongoing  Central District of California grand jury investigation against the Abergil family, where a RICO conspiracy case was initiated in December 2007,best demonstrates the full extent of such criminal activity.Investigators have linked Yitzhak Abergil and his entire network  to crimes of “embezzlement, extortion, kidnapping, and money laundering.” Yitzhak Abergil is currently under arrest in Israel and facing extradition for related charges linking him to the  murder of Israeli drug dealer Samy Attias on U.S. soil.

¶23. (SBU) As part of an ongoing effort to track Israeli OC through media reports and police sources, Post so far has identified 16 families and 78 related individuals who are at the center of Israeli organized criminal activity. The consular section has revoked several visas for those who have been convicted of crimes in Israel,but many OC figures have no prior criminal convictions and carry no visa ineligibilities. As a result, many hold valid nonimmigrant visas to the United States and have traveled freely or attempted  to travel for a variety of purposes.

¶24. (SBU) In March 2009, Post received information from law

enforcement authorities that convicted criminal and member of the

Abergil organization, Mordechai Yair Hasin, along with his pregnantwife and child, was intending to flee Israel for Los Angeles on valid tourist visas. Hasin’s visa was revoked based on his conviction, as were his family’s visas after they were determined  to be intending immigrants.

¶25. (SBU) As in the Hasin case, Post is using every available toolto limit OC travel to the United States, but such efforts are notalways successful. In June 2008, Post issued Adam Abitbul a valid tourist visa. Abitbul had no prior criminal convictions, and carried no visa ineligibilities. Several months later, Post

received information from the Los Angeles Police Department  (LAPD)that he had traveled to the United States to carry out a hit.Abitbul returned to Israel prematurely for his father’s funeral, atwhich time Post revoked his visa. (Post can only revoke the visas  of Israeli citizens while in country.) In a similar case, in October 2008 Post issued Moshe Bar Muha a tourist visa; he claimed to be traveling for medical treatment. Post subsequently received information from the LAPD that Bar Muha is in fact the brother of Itzik Bar Muha of the Jerusalem Gang (see above) and a convictedcriminal.

¶26. (SBU) As recently as March 2009, Zvika Ben Shabat, Yaacov

Avitan, and Tzuri Rokah requested visas to attend a

“security-related convention” in Las Vegas. According to local

media reports, all three had involvement with OC. Post asked the

applicants to provide police reports for any criminal records in

Israel, but without such evidence there is no immediate

ineligibility for links to OC. Luckily, all three have so far

failed to return for continued adjudication of their applications.Nevertheless, it is fair to assume that many known OC figures hold valid tourist visas to the United States and travel freely.

Comment: Israeli OC Slipping Through the Consular Cracks

——————————————— ———

¶27. (SBU) Given the growing reach and lethal methods of Israeli OC, blocking the travel of known OC figures to the United States is a matter of great concern to Post. Through collaboration with Israeli and U.S. law enforcement authorities, Post has developed an extensive database and placed lookouts for OC figures and their foot soldiers. Nevertheless, the above visa cases demonstrate the challenges that have arisen since the termination of the Visas Shark in September 2008. Unlike OC groups from the former Soviet Union, Italy, China, and Central America application of INA 212(a)(3)(A)(ii) against Israeli OC is not specifically authorized er Foreign Affairs Manual 40.31 N5.3. As such, Israelis who are nown to work for or belong to OC families are not automatically neligible for travel to the United States.


WikiLeaks servers safe in Stockholm nuclear bunker

On a main street in one of Stockholm’s hippest areas, a snow-covered hill topped by a church conceals a nuclear-proof bunker, home to a futuristic data centre holding 8,000 servers – two of which belong to WikiLeaks

December 10, 2010


Stockholm: On a main street in one of Stockholm’s hippest areas, a snow-covered hill topped by a church conceals a nuclear-proof bunker, home to a futuristic data centre holding 8,000 servers – two of which belong to WikiLeaks.

“All the global fuss is made by these two little boxes,” said Jon Karlung, chairman and founder of Bahnhof, one of the companies providing server space to the whistleblowing website.

Karlung is crouched on the floor, pointing to two slim black plastic boxes surrounded by wires. Each blinks with a blue light, indicating that they are active.

The servers are kept in a locked white cabinet along with rows and rows of others in a large room with stone walls – it has been carved directly into the mountain.

The vault buzzes with the sounds of the servers and the fans needed to cool them down.

The besuited businessman closes the white cabinet door, and continues his guided tour of the data hall, the centre of much attention since WikiLeaks, a client since October, started releasing a slew of secret US embassy cables.

By the chairman’s own admission, the data centre is essentially like any other, and WikiLeaks is treated just like any other client Bahnhof provides server services to.

But the place looks like something straight out of a science-fiction or espionage film, reflecting the secretive character of its most talked-about tenant, WikiLeaks’ enigmatic leader Julian Assange.

Assange is now sitting in jail in London pending a hearing on extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning over sexual assault allegations. Until Interpol sent out a notice for his arrest, even his exact date of birth had been kept secret.

A visitor enters the data hall through sliding glass doors, engulfed in the steam caused by the evacuated heat of the servers, on the side of Vita Berget (The White Mountain) in a trendy corner of the Soedermalm borough of Stockholm.

Once inside, the heat and humidity are stifling as a slightly slanted ramp leads into the hall itself, the wall flanked by almost tropical plants that would never survive the chilly temperatures outside.

Code-named “pionen” (the peony in Swedish) the bunker was first designed in the mid-1940s, then refurbished as a nuclear-attack proof civilian defence shelter at the height of the Cold War.

The large hall was used for different purposes – at one point in the 1990s it was an exhibition space, until being taken over a few years ago by Bahnhof, a large company with four other – far more ordinary – data centres. The company is also an Internet service provider.

The bunker provides extra security for WikiLeaks, Karlung jokes, but the real threat is not really a physical one.

            “We are very well protected for physical attacks, but that is not going to happen. The real threat is maybe legal and probably cyber attacks,” he says.

In an office next to the server room, he proudly points to a screen showing a graph of the traffic on the WikiLeaks servers.

“Up to now, no attack has hit us directly. We have seen effects from other attacks, but no attack on this facility or the services they have here,” he says.

WikiLeaks, Karlung explains, also has servers elsewhere.

“They don’t have all their eggs in the same basket.”

When asked about the political turmoil unleashed by cablegate, Karlung says his clients can use their servers for what they want, as long as they do not break Swedish laws.

“The only thing that would jeopardise their servers here is if they had illegal material … They must pay their bills, their material must be legal in Sweden.”
            Hosting a server, he says is “just like the mail service.”

Asking him what his clients use their servers for is “like asking the mailman if he opens the mail,” he says.



December 10, 2010
FAS Project on Government Secrecy

            The U.S. Government insists that the classification markings on many of the leaked documents being published by Wikileaks and other organizations are still in force, even though the documents are effectively in the public domain, and it has directed federal employees and contractors not to access or read the records outside of a classified network.

            But by strictly adhering to the letter of security policy and elevating security above mission performance, some say the government may be causing additional damage.

            “At DHS we are getting regular messages [warning not to access classified records from Wikileaks],” one Department of Homeland Security official told us in an email message. “It has even been suggested that if it is discovered that we have accessed a classified Wikileaks cable on our personal computers, that will be a security violation. So, my grandmother would be allowed to access the cables, but not me. This seems ludicrous.”

            “As someone who has spent many years with the USG dealing with senior officials of foreign governments, it seems to me that the problem faced by CRS researchers (and raised by you) is going to be widespread across our government if we follow this policy.”

            “Part of making informed judgments about what a foreign government or leader will do or think about something is based on an understanding and analysis of what information has gone into their own deliberative processes. If foreign government workers know about something in the Wikileaks documents, which clearly originated with the U.S., then they will certainly (and reasonably) assume that their US counterparts will know about it too, including the staffers. If we don’t, they will assume that we simply do not care, are too arrogant, stupid or negligent to find and read the material, or are so unimportant that we’ve been intentionally left out of the information loop. In any such instance, senior staff will be handicapped in their preparation and in their inter-governmental relationships,” the DHS official said.

            “I think more damage will be done by keeping the federal workforce largely in the dark about what other interested parties worldwide are going to be reading and analyzing. It does not solve the problem to let only a small coterie of analysts review documents that may be deemed relevant to their own particular ‘stovepiped’ subject area. Good analysis requires finding and putting together all the puzzle pieces.”

            So far, however, this kind of thinking is not finding a receptive audience in government. There has been no sign of leadership from any Administration official who would stand up and say:  “National security classification is a means, and not an end in itself.  What any reader in the world can discover is no longer a national security secret. We should not pretend otherwise.”

Julian Assange Becomes US’s Public Enemy No. 1

December 7, 2010

by Marcel Rosenbach and Holger Stark


He may be on the short list for Time magazine’s “person of the year,” but many Americans consider Julian Assange to be a criminal and a terrorist. The WikiLeaks founder has been fighting a battle on several fronts since the publication of the diplomatic cables. He has now been arrested in London.

Wherever Julian Assange turned up in recent weeks, there was always a noticeably well-dressed young woman at his side. Jennifer Robinson, an attorney at a London law firm, has served as Assange’s legal protection insurance for the last few weeks. She kept several sets of legal documents in her purse, for the event that Scotland Yard or some other law enforcement agency decided to arrest the Australian.

Assange now finds himself in need of such expert legal protection. He was arrested by British police in London on Tuesday on a European warrant issued by Swedish prosecutors. London’s Metropolitan Police said in a statement that Assange had been arrested at around 9:30 a.m. local time, by appointment at a police station in the British capital. “He is accused by the Swedish authorities of one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation and one count of rape, all alleged to have been committed in August 2010,” the statement read. Assange was due to appear before a London court later on Tuesday.

Assange’s lawyers had earlier said that he would meet with police to talk about the European arrest warrant. “We are in the process of making arrangements to meet with police by consent,” lawyer Mark Stephens said on Monday.

As of last week, there was no longer any doubt that the Swedish authorities were determined to catch the 39-year-old at all costs. Interpol issued a “Red Notice” seeking Assange’s arrest, and Scotland Yard’s Serious Organized Crime Agency confirmed that it was familiar with the case.

But like everything else relating to the WikiLeaks founder, this private case has also become a political issue. The man who had sent a shockwave through global politics since the publication of the American embassy cables two weekends ago had become a hunted man.

He has also become the Americans’ latest public enemy, after having challenged the world’s most powerful nation and made its secrets public for all to see.

‘Assange Should Be Assassinated’

While Washington’s reactions to the leaks of military documents from the Afghanistan and Iraq wars were relatively calm, the tone has now changed. Last week, Attorney General Eric Holder officially confirmed that the US Justice Department could invoke the Espionage Act of 1917 to take legal action against the WikiLeaks staff. Under the law, the disclosure of secret military information is a crime. According to Holder, an amendment of the law is also an option for the future. “To the extent there are gaps in our laws, we will move to close those gaps,” Holder said. At the end of last week, American government agencies instructed their employees not to visit the WikiLeaks website, while institutions like the US Library of Congress blocked access to the site.

Republican Congressman Peter King wants the State Department to examine whether WikiLeaks can be classified as a terrorist organization, which would make it easier for US authorities to hunt down Assange and his supporters. Tom Flanagan, a professor at the University of Calgary and a former adviser to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, offered an even more radical suggestion. “Assange should be assassinated,” he said on Canadian television. “I wouldn’t feel unhappy if Assange disappeared.” Flanagan later apologized for his comments.

Prominent politicians like Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman have also joined the anti-WikiLeaks camp. Last week, Lieberman called on Internet companies to stop providing WikiLeaks with server capacity.

His appeal was successful. Amazon Web Services informed WikiLeaks in an email last week that its activities violated Amazon’s terms of service. In addition to being the world’s largest online merchant, Amazon also rents out server capacity. WikiLeaks was already using Amazon servers when it leaked the Iraq reports in October, and hundreds of thousands of users viewed the US embassy cables on American servers — until Amazon pulled the plug, that is.

The Infowar Has Started

Since then, Amazon and Lieberman have come under sharp attack. Daniel Ellsberg, America’s most famous whistleblower, publicly called for a boycott of Amazon, saying: “I’m disgusted by Amazon’s cowardice and servility.” On Friday, John Perry Barlow, an ex-hippie and co-founder of the civil liberties group Electronic Frontier Foundation, addressed Internet activists with the following Twitter message: “The first serious infowar is now engaged. The field of battle is WikiLeaks. You are the troops.”

Amazon sought to justify its decision by claiming that terminating its relationship with WikiLeaks had nothing to do with politics. It argued that it had to act as it did because WikiLeaks was disseminating content to which it did not have the rights.

The dispute over servers was accompanied by an attack on the wikileaks.org address. The website’s problems began on Nov. 28. Internet statistics site show that wikileaks.org was shut down hours before the planned publication of the first cables by large numbers of simultaneous attempts to access the site. Using Twitter, a certain “th3j35t3r,” also known as “The Jester,” claimed responsibility for a wave of attacks. According to the Jester, WikiLeaks was endangering the lives of soldiers and jeopardizing international relations. Prior to the WikiLeaks attacks, Jester, who claims to be a former soldier who worked in special operations, had earned a reputation for attacking Islamist sites. Using Special Forces jargon for having eliminated a terrorist, Jester tweeted: “Tango down.”

The attacks did not subside during the week. In fact, they intensified. On Tuesday the WikiLeaks team, apparently impressed, tweeted that they were under serious attack once again, at a rate of “more than 10 gigabits per second.” The organization has since shifted to servers in France, but it is also beginning to lose ground there. French Industry Minister Eric Besson calls it “unacceptable” for a French server to harbor a website “that has violated the secrecy of diplomatic relations and put people in danger.” The Internet company in question has since appealed to a court and requested a legal review.

Part 2: A Battle for the Internet

The digital slugfest has begun, as the showdown over WikiLeaks becomes a battle for the Internet. American conservatives like Marc Thiessen, a speechwriter for former President George W. Bush, had already called for a similar cyber attack by the US military after the Afghanistan leaks. The battle for the virtual presence of the organization has the potential to expand into a cyber war.

According to Assange, his case shows the extent to which the “privatization of state censorship” has already flourished. Amazon, he says, “caved in” to Liebermann and the US Department of Homeland Security. “These attacks will not stop our mission,” the Australian claimed at the end of last week, “but should be setting off alarm bells about the rule of law in the United States.”

The massive attacks also have to do with the feeling many Americans have that WikiLeaks is on an anti-American crusade, a charge that is only partly true. The first document that the organization leaked, in December 2006, was a letter from an Islamist who called for the formation of an “Islamic republic” in Somalia. Assange himself had selected the letter with the intention of launching the site with something special that would defy people’s expectations. In a declaration of principle from its early days, the group wrote that it mainly hoped to receive documents from repressive regimes like those in Russia and China.

Taking on Repressive Regimes

WikiLeaks’ first major success was the publication of a report, classified as secret, by a British detective agency that documented the corruption of the ruling clique surrounding former Kenyan President Daniel arap Moi. Assange had analyzed the report, together with Kenyan human rights attorneys and journalists, and released it shortly before the country’s presidential election in late 2007. He is still convinced that the poor showing of President Mwai Kibaki, who was supported by Moi, had something to do with his leak.

The WikiLeaks archives also contain hundreds of documents from countries like China and Thailand, where freedom of the press is restricted. It’s only been since this year, when the “Collateral Murder” helicopter video from Baghdad, the Afghanistan and Iraq war logs and the embassy cables were published, that it has seemed as if there were a “one-dimensional conflict with the United States,” as Daniel Domscheit-Berg, the former WikiLeaks spokesman who left the organization after a dispute, puts it. From Assange’s perspective, this concentration on America also has to do with the fact that the United States is the only superpower, and that it is waging wars on two fronts, in Iraq and Afghanistan, thereby meriting the attention of whistleblowers.

Rarely has an individual divided the world’s population as sharply as the white-haired Australian. The global elites are now afraid of WikiLeaks, and repressive governments like the ones in China and Russia are worried about disclosures coming from their computer networks. The WikiLeaks Internet address is blocked in many countries, including Thailand and China.

Modern-Day Robin Hood

On the other hand, Assange can depend on the support of an international flock of followers, which has formed on the Internet and celebrates the Australian as a modern-day Robin Hood: a just renegade, devoted to a good cause.

Time has nominated Assange as a candidate for its “person of the year” designation, which is traditionally used to distinguish the individual who has had the strongest influence on the world in recent months. In justifying the nomination, jury member Lauren Zalaznick says that he has “put journalistic integrity on a knife-blade edge.” “What is the responsibility of the journalist to make public or keep private?” Zalaznick asks. “The very name WikiLeaks raises the issue of digital media with respect to politics, society and culture.”

The Internet poll is still underway. Late last week, Assange was in second place, with about 130,000 votes, behind Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan but well ahead of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, US President Barack Obama and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Last week, even the Bank of America learned how influential Assange has become. When Assange announced that WikiLeaks intended to leak the internal documents of a major bank, the bank’s share price fell by more than 3 percent.

In light of this worldwide polarization, it would be an irony of history if Assange were to stumble over a private matter, of all things: the Swedish sex scandal.

Part 3: Parallel Affairs in Stockholm

The Stockholm affair began in mid-August with an event held by an organization tied to the Swedish Social Democrats. Anna A., the organization’s spokeswoman, had invited Assange, who stayed at her apartment in Stockholm. It is undisputed that Assange and Anna A. had sex with each other on the evening before the event.

The next day, Assange gave a talk about the preceding Afghanistan leaks at the headquarters of the Swedish trade union association. A young artist from a town near Stockholm named Sofia W., who had obtained accreditation for the event as a photographer and worshipped Assange, was in the audience. It is also undisputed that Assange and Sofia W. had sex that night and again the following morning, before Assange disappeared.

A short time later, the two women found out about the parallel affairs, discussed their experiences and decided to go to the police together. Anna A. later went on record as saying that she had only intended to accompany the younger Sofia as a witness. Assange, she said, was not violent but had a strange attitude toward women and refused to accept “no” for an answer.

Arguments over Condoms

The statements by the two women marked the beginning of a case rarely seen in Swedish legal history. The public prosecutor assigned to the case applied for an arrest warrant on charges that included rape. She also confirmed the name of the accused when asked by the tabloid newspaper Expressen. Within less than 24 hours, the public prosecutor’s office withdrew the arrest warrant and the rape charge, but not a charge of sexual harassment.

Weeks later, the attorney for the two women managed to convince the prosecution to reopen its investigation of the rape allegation. A new arrest warrant was issued in November and the Swedes began the search for Assange. But the European arrest warrant contained a technical error. A revised version now exists.

It is now up to the courts to determine what exactly happened in those two nights. Both women testified that they initially had consensual sex with Assange. But they claim that this changed later on, when arguments erupted over the use of condoms.

Swedish legal practice in relation to sex offenses is more rigid than German practice. Under the Swedish criminal code, a person who threatens to perform sexual acts is to be convicted of rape and sentenced to a minimum of two years and a maximum of six years in prison. Moderately severe cases are punishable with up to four years in prison.

Questionable Approach

What is questionable, however, is the approach taken by the Swedish investigating authorities. Assange made himself available for questioning in Sweden for four weeks, then left the country with the permission of the public prosecutor’s office and told Scotland Yard in Great Britain that he could be reached through her law firm, says Jennifer Robinson, Assange’s attorney. He also offered to be questioned at the Swedish Embassy in London or directly at Scotland Yard, she said.

Speaking ahead of Assange’s arrest on Tuesday, Robinson denied the rumors that her client had disappeared and was on the run. Because of the latest death threats after the publication of the embassy cables, Assange, Robinson said, was merely keeping himself “in the background.” The Swedish prosecutor assigned to the case was unavailable for comment. Robinson had already announced that she would take action against the arrest warrant and a possible extradition.

The publication of the diplomatic cables is Assange’s biggest leak by far — and one that gives even him food for thought. “The effects are at such a scale, it eclipses our ability to survey them,” he said.

Translated from the German by Christopher Sultan

The Wikileaks sex files: How two one-night stands sparked a worldwide hunt for Julian Assange


December 7th, 2010

by Richard Pendlebury

Daily Mail/UK

A winter morning in backwoods Scandinavia and the chime of a church bell drifts across the snowbound town of Enkoping. Does it also toll for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange?

Today, this small industrial centre, 40 miles west of Stockholm, remains best-known — if known at all — as the birthplace of the ­adjustable spanner.

But if extradition proceedings involving ­Britain are successful, it could soon be rather more celebrated — by the U.S. government at least — as the place where Mr Assange made a ­catastrophic error.

Here, in a first-floor flat in a dreary apartment block, the mastermind behind the leak of more than 250,000 classified U.S. diplomatic cables this month slept with a female admirer whom he had just met at a seminar. She subsequently made a complaint to police.

As a result, Assange, believed to be in hiding in England, faces a criminal prosecution and ­possibly jail. Last night, a European Arrest ­Warrant was given by Interpol to Scotland Yard.

The Stockholm police want to question him regarding the possible rape of a woman and separate allegations from another Swedish admirer, with whom he was having a concurrent fling. But there remains a huge question mark over the evidence. Many people believe that the 39-year-old ­Australian-born whistleblower is the victim of a U.S. government dirty tricks campaign.

They argue that the whole squalid affair is a sexfalla, which translates loosely from the Swedish as a ‘honeytrap’.

One thing is clear, though: Sweden’s complex rape laws are central to the story.

Using a number of sources including leaked police interviews, we can begin to piece together the sequence of events which led to Assange’s liberty being threatened by Stockholm police rather than Washington, where already one U.S. politician has called on him to executed for ‘spying’.

The story began on August 11 this year, when Assange arrived in Stockholm.

He had been invited to be the key speaker at a seminar on ‘war and the role of the media’, ­organised by the ­centre-Left Brotherhood Movement.

His point of contact was a female party official, whom we shall refer to as Sarah (her identity must be ­protected because of the ongoing legal proceedings).

An attractive blonde, Sarah was already a well-known ‘radical feminist’. In her 30s, she had travelled the world following various fashionable causes.

While a research assistant at a local university she had not only been the protegee of a militant feminist ­academic, but held the post of ‘campus sexual equity officer’. Fighting male discrimination in all forms, including sexual harassment, was her forte.

Sarah and Assange had never met. But in a series of internet and telephone conversations, they agreed that during his visit he could stay at her small apartment in central Stockholm. She said she would be away from the city until the day of the seminar itself.
            What happened over the next few days — while casting an extraordinary light on the values of the two women involved — suggests that even if the WikiLeaks founder is innocent of any charges, he is certainly a man of strong sexual appetites who is not averse to exploiting his fame.

Certainly his stay was always going to be a very social affair, mingling with like-minded and undoubtedly ­admiring people.

That Thursday, he held court at the Beirut Cafe in Stockholm, dining with fellow ‘open government’ campaigners and an American journalist.

The following afternoon, Sarah returned to Stockholm, 24 hours earlier than planned.

In an interview she later gave to police, she is reported to have said: ‘He (Assange) was there when I came home. We talked a little and decided that he could stay.’

The pair went out for dinner together at a nearby restaurant. Afterwards they returned to her flat and had sex. What is not disputed by either of them is that a condom broke — an event which, as we shall see, would later take on great significance.

At the time, however, the pair ­continued to be friendly enough the next day, a Saturday, with Sarah even throwing a party for him at her home in the evening.

That same day, Assange attended his seminar at the Swedish trade union HQ. In the front row of the audience, dressed in an eye-catching pink jumper — you can see her on a YouTube ­internet clip recorded at the time — was a pretty twentysomething whom we shall call Jessica. She was the woman — who two sources this week told me is a council employee — from Enkoping.
            Jessica would later tell police that she had first seen Assange on television a few weeks before. She had found him ‘interesting, brave and admirable’. As a result, she began to follow the ­WikiLeaks saga, and when she discovered that he was due to visit Stockholm she ­contacted the Brotherhood Movement to volunteer to help out at the seminar. Although her offer was not taken up, she decided to attend the seminar anyway and took a large number of photos of Assange during his 90-minute talk.

It is believed that by happenstance Jessica also met Sarah — the woman with whom Assange had spent the night — during the meeting.

Afterwards, she hung around and was still there when Assange — who has a child from a failed relationship around 20 years ago — left with a group of male friends for lunch.

Sources conflict here. One says that she asked to tag along; another that Assange invited her to join them.

Subsequently, one of Assange’s friends recalled that Jessica had been ‘very keen’ to get Assange’s attention.

She was later to tell police that, at the restaurant, Assange put his arm around her shoulder. ‘I was flattered. It was obvious that he was flirting,’ she reportedly said.

The attraction was mutual. After lunch, the pair went to the cinema to see a film called Deep Sea. Jessica’s account suggests that were ‘intimate’ and then went to a park where Assange told her she was ‘attractive’.

But he had to leave to go to a ‘crayfish party’, a traditional, and usually boozy, Swedish summer event.

Jessica asked if they would meet again. ‘Of course,’ said the WikiLeaks supremo. They parted and she took a train back to Enkoping while he took a cab back to his temporary base at Sarah’s flat, where the crayfish party was to be held. You might think it strange that Sarah would want to throw a party in honour of the man about whom she would later make a complaint to police concerning their liaison the night before.
            This is only one of several puzzling flaws in the prosecution case.

A few hours after that party, Sarah apparently Tweeted: ‘Sitting outside … nearly freezing, with the world’s coolest people. It’s pretty amazing!’ She was later to try to erase this message.

During the party, Assange apparently phoned Jessica and a few hours later she was boasting to friends about her flirtation with him. At that point, according to police reports, her friends advised her ‘the ball is in your court’.

So it was that on the Monday, Jessica called Assange and they arranged to get together in Stockholm. When they did meet they agreed to go to her home in Enkoping, but he had no money for a train ticket and said he didn’t want to use a credit card because he would be ‘tracked’ (presumably, as he saw it, by the CIA or other agencies).

So Jessica bought both their tickets.

She had snagged perhaps the world’s most famous activist, and after they arrived at her apartment they had sex. According to her testimony to police, Assange wore a condom. The following morning they made love again. This time he used no protection.

Jessica reportedly said later that she was upset that he had refused when she asked him to wear a condom.

Again there is scant evidence — in the public domain at least — of rape, sexual molestation or unlawful coercion.

What’s more, the following morning, on the Tuesday, the pair amicably went out to have breakfast together and, at her prompting, Assange promised to stay in touch. He then returned to Stockholm, with Jessica again paying for his ticket.
            What happened next is difficult to explain. The most likely interpretation of events is that as a result of a one-night stand, one participant came to regret what had happened.

Jessica was worried she could have caught a sexual disease, or even be pregnant: and this is where the story takes an intriguing turn. She then decided to phone Sarah — whom she had met at the ­seminar, and with whom Assange had been staying — and apparently confided to her that she’d had unprotected sex with him.

At that point, Sarah said that she, too, had slept with him.

As a result of this conversation, Sarah reportedly phoned an acquaintance of Assange and said that she wanted him to leave her apartment. (He refused to do so, and maintains that she only asked him to leave three days later, on the Friday of that week.)

How must Sarah have felt to ­discover that the man she’d taken to her bed three days before had already taken up with another woman? ­Furious? Jealous? Out for revenge? Perhaps she merely felt aggrieved for a fellow woman in distress.

Having taken stock of their options for a day or so, on Friday, August 20, Sarah and Jessica took drastic action.

They went together to a Stockholm police station where they said they were seeking advice on how to proceed with a complaint by Jessica against Assange.

According to one source, Jessica wanted to know if it was possible to force Assange to undergo an HIV test. Sarah, the seasoned feminist warrior, said she was there merely to support Jessica. But she also gave police an account of what had happened between herself and Assange a week before.

The female interviewing officer, presumably because of allegations of a sabotaged condom in one case and a refusal to wear one in the ­second, concluded that both women were victims: that ­Jessica had been raped, and Sarah subject to sexual molestation.
            It was Friday evening. A duty prosecuting attorney, Maria ­Kjellstrand, was called.

She agreed that Assange should be sought on suspicion of rape.

The following day, Sarah was questioned again, cementing the allegation of sexual misconduct against Assange. That evening, detectives tried to find him and searched Stockholm’s entertainment district — but to no avail.

By Sunday morning, the news had leaked to the Press.

Indeed, it has been suggested that the two women had discussed approaching a tabloid newspaper to maximise Assange’s discomfort. By now, the authorities realised they had a high-profile case on their hands and legal papers were rushed to the weekend home of the chief ­prosecutor, who dismissed the rape charge.

She felt that what had occurred were no more than minor offences.

But the case was now starting to spin out of control.

Sarah next spoke to a newspaper, saying: ‘In both cases, the sex had been consensual from the start but had eventually turned into abuse.’

Rejecting accusations of an international plot to trap Assange, she added: ‘The accusations were not set up by the Pentagon or anybody else. The responsibility for what happened to me and the other girl lies with a man with a twisted view of women, who has a problem accepting the word “no”.’

The two women then instructed Claes Borgstrom, a so-called ‘gender lawyer’ who is a leading supporter of a campaign to extend the legal ­definition of rape to help bring more rapists to justice.

As a result, in September the case was reopened by the authorities, and last month Interpol said Assange was wanted for ‘sex crimes’.

Yesterday, his lawyer Mark Stephens said the Swedish warrant was a ‘political stunt’ and that he would fight it on the grounds that it could lead to the WikiLeaks founder being handed over to the American authorities (Sweden has an ­extradition treaty with the U.S.).
            Assange continues to insist that he has done nothing wrong, and that his sexual encounters with both women were consensual.

But last week, the Swedish High Court refused to hear his final appeal against arrest, and extra­dition papers were presented to police in England, where Assange is currently in hiding. He is able to stay in this country thanks to a six-month visa which expires in the spring.

So what to make of a story in which it’s hard to argue that any of the ­parties emerges with much credit? How reliable are the two female witnesses?

Earlier this year, Sarah is reported to have posted a telling entry on her website, which she has since removed. But a copy has been retrieved and widely circulated on the internet.

Entitled ‘7 Steps to Legal Revenge’, it explains how women can use courts to get their own back on unfaithful lovers.

Step 7 says: ‘Go to it and keep your goal in sight. Make sure your victim suffers just as you did.’ (The highlighting of text is Sarah’s own.)

As for Assange, he remains in ­hiding in Britain, and his website continues to release classified American documents that are ­daily embarrassing the U.S. government.

Clearly, he is responsible for an avalanche of political leaks. Whether he is also guilty of sexual offences remains to be seen.

But the more one learns about the case, the more one feels that, unlike the bell in Enkoping, the allegations simply don’t ring true.


The Truth Will Always Win


December 7, 2010

by Julian Assange

The Australian

In 1958 a young Rupert Murdoch, then owner and editor of Adelaide’s The News, wrote: “In the race between secrecy and truth, it seems inevitable that truth will always win.”

His observation perhaps reflected his father Keith Murdoch’s expose that Australian troops were being needlessly sacrificed by incompetent British commanders on the shores of Gallipoli. The British tried to shut him up but Keith Murdoch would not be silenced and his efforts led to the termination of the disastrous Gallipoli campaign.

Nearly a century later, WikiLeaks is also fearlessly publishing facts that need to be made public.

I grew up in a Queensland country town where people spoke their minds bluntly. They distrusted big government as something that could be corrupted if not watched carefully. The dark days of corruption in the Queensland government before the Fitzgerald inquiry are testimony to what happens when the politicians gag the media from reporting the truth.

These things have stayed with me. WikiLeaks was created around these core values. The idea, conceived in Australia, was to use internet technologies in new ways to report the truth.

WikiLeaks coined a new type of journalism: scientific journalism. We work with other media outlets to bring people the news, but also to prove it is true. Scientific journalism allows you to read a news story, then to click online to see the original document it is based on. That way you can judge for yourself: Is the story true? Did the journalist report it accurately?

Democratic societies need a strong media and WikiLeaks is part of that media. The media helps keep government honest. WikiLeaks has revealed some hard truths about the Iraq and Afghan wars, and broken stories about corporate corruption.

People have said I am anti-war: for the record, I am not. Sometimes nations need to go to war, and there are just wars. But there is nothing more wrong than a government lying to its people about those wars, then asking these same citizens to put their lives and their taxes on the line for those lies. If a war is justified, then tell the truth and the people will decide whether to support it.

If you have read any of the Afghan or Iraq war logs, any of the US embassy cables or any of the stories about the things WikiLeaks has reported, consider how important it is for all media to be able to report these things freely.

WikiLeaks is not the only publisher of the US embassy cables. Other media outlets, including Britain ‘s The Guardian, The New York Times, El Pais in Spain and Der Spiegel in Germany have published the same redacted cables.

Yet it is WikiLeaks, as the co-ordinator of these other groups, that has copped the most vicious attacks and accusations from the US government and its acolytes. I have been accused of treason, even though I am an Australian, not a US, citizen. There have been dozens of serious calls in the US for me to be “taken out” by US special forces. Sarah Palin says I should be “hunted down like Osama bin Laden”, a Republican bill sits before the US Senate seeking to have me declared a “transnational threat” and disposed of accordingly. An adviser to the Canadian Prime Minister’s office has called on national television for me to be assassinated. An American blogger has called for my 20-year-old son, here in Australia, to be kidnapped and harmed for no other reason than to get at me.

And Australians should observe with no pride the disgraceful pandering to these sentiments by Prime Minister Gillard and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have not had a word of criticism for the other media organisations. That is because The Guardian, The New York Times and Der Spiegel are old and large, while WikiLeaks is as yet young and small.

We are the underdogs. The Gillard government is trying to shoot the messenger because it doesn’t want the truth revealed, including information about its own diplomatic and political dealings.

Has there been any response from the Australian government to the numerous public threats of violence against me and other WikiLeaks personnel? One might have thought an Australian prime minister would be defending her citizens against such things, but there have only been wholly unsubstantiated claims of illegality. The Prime Minister and especially the Attorney-General are meant to carry out their duties with dignity and above the fray. Rest assured, these two mean to save their own skins. They will not.

Every time WikiLeaks publishes the truth about abuses committed by US agencies, Australian politicians chant a provably false chorus with the State Department: “You’ll risk lives! National security! You’ll endanger troops!” Then they say there is nothing of importance in what WikiLeaks publishes. It can’t be both. Which is it?

It is neither. WikiLeaks has a four-year publishing history. During that time we have changed whole governments, but not a single person, as far as anyone is aware, has been harmed. But the US , with Australian government connivance, has killed thousands in the past few months alone.

US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates admitted in a letter to the US congress that no sensitive intelligence sources or methods had been compromised by the Afghan war logs disclosure. The Pentagon stated there was no evidence the WikiLeaks reports had led to anyone being harmed in Afghanistan. NATO in Kabul told CNN it couldn’t find a single person who needed protecting. The Australian Department of Defence said the same. No Australian troops or sources have been hurt by anything we have published.

But our publications have been far from unimportant. The US diplomatic cables reveal some startling facts:

The US asked its diplomats to steal personal human material and information from UN officials and human rights groups, including DNA, fingerprints, iris scans, credit card numbers, internet passwords and ID photos, in violation of international treaties. Presumably Australian UN diplomats may be targeted, too.

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia asked the US Officials in Jordan and Bahrain want Iran ‘s nuclear program stopped by any means available.

Britain’s Iraq inquiry was fixed to protect “US interests”.

Sweden is a covert member of NATO and US intelligence sharing is kept from parliament.

The US is playing hardball to get other countries to take freed detainees from Guantanamo Bay . Barack Obama agreed to meet the Slovenian President only if Slovenia took a prisoner. Our Pacific neighbour Kiribati was offered millions of dollars to accept detainees.

In its landmark ruling in the Pentagon Papers case, the US Supreme Court said “only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government”. The swirling storm around WikiLeaks today reinforces the need to defend the right of all media to reveal the truth.

Julian Assange is the editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks

Cyberattacks Are Retaliation for Pressure on WikiLeaks
December 8, 2010
by Ravi Somaiya and John Markoff 
The Guardian/UK


LONDON — A small army of activist hackers orchestrated a broad campaign of cyberattacks on Wednesday in support of the beleaguered antisecrecy organization WikiLeaks, which has drawn governmental criticism from around the globe for its release of classified American documents and whose founder, Julian Assange, is being held in Britain on accusations of rape.

Targets included Mastercard.com, which stopped processing donations for WikiLeaks; Amazon.com, which had briefly provided WikiLeaks server space; the online payment service PayPal, which cut off its commercial cooperation with WikiLeaks; the lawyer representing the two Swedish women who have accused Mr. Assange of sexual improprieties; and PostFinance, the Swiss postal system’s financial arm, which closed Mr. Assange’s account after saying he provided false information by saying that he resided in Switzerland.

Anonymous, a leaderless group of activist hackers that had vowed to wreak revenge on any organization that lined up against WikiLeaks, claimed responsibility for the Mastercard attack, and, according one activist associated with the group, was conducting multiple other attacks.

That activist, Gregg Housh, said in a telephone interview that 1,500 activists were on online forums and chatrooms including Anonops.net, mounting mass and repeated “denial of service” attacks on sites that have moved against Mr. Assange and WikiLeaks in recent days.

The hacker army has rallied around the theory that all the actions against the organization and against Mr. Assange, including the rape accusations, are politically motivated efforts to silence those challenging authority.

“To all of us,” he said, “there is no distinction. He is a political prisoner and the two things are completely entwined.”

Mr. Housh, who has worked on previous campaigns with Anonymous but disavows any illegal activity himself, said it was the first time the group had enough firepower to bring down well-secured blue chip companies like Mastercard. “No tactics have changed this time,” he said, “but there is so much support and there are so many people doing it that sites like that are going down.”

The group, which gained notoriety for their cyberattacks on targets as diverse as the Church of Scientology and the rock musician Gene Simmons, released two manifestos over the weekend vowing revenge those who moved against WikiLeaks after the organization’s recent release of classified diplomatic documents from a cache of 250,000 it had obtained.

“We fight for the same reasons,” said one. “We want transparency and we counter censorship.”

Mr. Assange was jailed in Britain on Tuesday after being denied bail in a London court hearing on a warrant for his extradition to Sweden to face accusations of sexual offenses. On the courthouse steps, his lawyer, Mark Stephens, told reporters that support shown for Mr. Assange and WikiLeaks so far was “the tip of the iceberg.”

In words that now seem prophetic, he added that the battle for WikiLeaks and its founder’s future was “going to go viral.”


Ravi Somaiya reported from London and John Markoff from San Francicso.

Attack on MasterCard ‘Payback’ for Dropping WikiLeaks

Group Forms ‘Voluntary Botnet’ to Attack WikiLeaks Foes

December 8, 2010

by Jason Ditz,


Mastercard’s website has been suffering severe problems off and on for the better part of the day, and performance tracker Netcraft.com showed the site entirely down for much of the early morning after a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack.

A group calling itself Operation Payback has taken credit for the attack, saying it was retaliation for Mastercard’s decision to block WikiLeaks from receiving donations through their credit card service.

Operation Payback has been around for awhile, launching attacks against pro-copyright groups like the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), but has since moved on to what they refer to as “Operation Avenge Assange,” targeting groups that have moved against WikiLeaks. They reportedly also attacked the Swedish prosecutor’s website earlier today.

According to netcraft, the DDoS attacks by the organization are somewhat different, as while most such groups use botnets resulting from the distrubution of malware to seize control of unaware peoples’ computers to launch their attacks, Operation Payback relies entirely on what it calls a “Low Orbit Ion Cannon,” a voluntary botnet that actually involves people voluntarily installing the software on their systems to help them with their strikes.

WikiLeaks itself has been under attack by a botnet since it began releasing the State Department’s cables, with a self-described “patriot” claiming credit for the attacks as a demonstration of his nationalism. It seems the tactic is now going both ways, however, and the battle over the whistleblowers’ right to publish is expanding into tit-for-tat cyberattacks by activists on either side.

Report: Assange accuser flees to Middle East, not cooperating with police

DeCember 9, 2010

by Daniel Tencer


Sweden withholding documentation on Assange probe: lawyer

One of the two Swedish women who have filed sex complaints against the founder of WikiLeaks has reportedly left Sweden and may no longer be cooperating with the criminal investigation.

According to a report at Australian news site Crikey.com, Anna Ardin has moved to the Palestinian territories to volunteer with a Christian group working to reconcile Arabs and Israelis.

One source from Ardin’s old university of Uppsala reported rumors that she had stopped co-operating with the prosecution service several weeks ago, and that this was part of the reason for the long delay in proceeding with charges — and what still appears to be an absence of charges.

Ardin’s blog shows that she has recently posted from the Palestinian territories. Her most recent blog posts make no mention of WikiLeaks or its founder, Julian Assange.

Some of Ardin’s most recent Tweets suggest sympathy for WikiLeaks.

“MasterCard, Visa and PayPal — belt them now!” Ardin urged in a Tweet Wednesday, evidently referring to the cyber-attacks launched on those institutions after they severed their relationships with WikiLeaks.

In a more recent Tweet, she complained of the media reports digging into her background.

“CIA agent, rabid feminist / Muslim lover, a Christian fundamentalist, flat & fatally in love with a man, can you even be all [these things all] the time?” she Tweeted in Swedish.

Some news reports have linked Ardin to the CIA, based on her contact with anti-Castro groups in Cuba. Ardin wrote her master’s thesis on these groups, while located in Havana and Miami. But others have questioned the validity of the connection.

Crikey.com notes that Ardin, an avowed feminist, has taken criticism from many prominent feminists, who, perhaps surprisingly, appear to have sided against the female accuser and with the male accused.

“Rape is being used in the Assange prosecution in the same way that women’s freedom was used to invade Afghanistan. Wake up!” Tweeted Naomi Klein.

Feminist activist Naomi Wolf penned an article sarcastically congratulating Interpol for its “commitment to engaging in global manhunts to arrest and prosecute men who behave like narcissistic jerks to women they are dating.”


Assange’s lawyer, renowned British advocate Mark Stephens, told CBS News Thursday that prosecutor Marianne Ny is staging a “show trial,” in reference to the politically motivated prosecutions of the Stalin-era Soviet Union.

Stephens said not only have formal charges not been filed against Assange, but the prosecution has failed to provide him with any documentation relating to the investigation. As a result, he says it’s impossible for him to begin crafting a defense.

Stephens also said he believed recent news reports that Sweden is holding talks with the United States on whether Assange can be extradited to face charges under US law.

It’s unclear what US laws Assange could have broken with his release of US State Department cables, as he is not a US citizen and therefore not bound by US treason laws, and his activites with WikiLeaks were carried out outside the US

Defend WikiLeaks or lose free speech. Journalists should wake up and realize that the attacks on the whistle-blower are attacks on them, too

December 6, 2010
by Dan Gillmor


            Journalists cover wars by not taking sides. But when the war is on free speech itself, neutrality is no longer an option.

            The WikiLeaks releases are a pivotal moment in the future of journalism. They raise any number of ethical and legal issues for journalists, but one is becoming paramount.
As I said last week, and feel obliged to say again today, our government — and its allies, willing or coerced, in foreign governments and corporations — are waging a powerful war against freedom of speech.

            WikiLeaks may well make us uncomfortable in some of what it does, though in general I believe it’s done far more good than harm so far. We need to recognize, however, as Mathew Ingram wrote over the weekend, that “Like It or Not, WikiLeaks is a Media Entity.” What our government is trying to do to WikiLeaks now is lawless in stunning ways, as Salon’s Glenn Greenwald forcefully argued today.

            These are also acts of outright censorship. No, Amazon is not bound by the First Amendment. But if it’s bowing to government pressure, it’s helping a panicked government tear up one of our most basic freedoms.

            And, no, the government’s campaign is not fully working. Internet “mirror” sites are springing up to host WikiLeaks’ material faster than governments can take them down. But WikiLeaks is the beneficiary, in this respect, of a wide swath of support from people who will make it part of their life’s mission to help prevent this particular instance of censorship from succeeding. How ready or able will they be to defend free speech every time it’s threatened in the future?

            The political class’ frothing against WikiLeaks is to be expected, even if it’s stirring up the kind of passion that almost always leads to bad outcomes. But what to make of the equally violent suggestions from people who call themselves journalists?

            Two Washington Post columnists, among many others, have been racing to see who can be the more warmongering. The reliably bellicose Charles Krauthammer invited the U.S. government to kill Julian Assange, while his colleague Marc A. Thiessen was only slightly less bloodthirsty when he urged cyber attacks on WikiLeaks and any other sites that might be showing the leaked cables.

 Of course, the New York Times, Washington Post and many other news organizations in the U.S. and other nations have published classified information themselves in the past — many, many times — without any help from WikiLeaks. Bob Woodward has practically made a career of publishing leaked information. By the same logic that the censors and their media acolytes are using against WikiLeaks, those organizations and lots of others could and should be subject to censorship as well. By Krauthammer’s sick standards, the death squads should be converging soon on his own offices, as well as those of the Times and London’s Guardian and more.

            Media organizations with even half a clue need to recognize what is at stake at this point. It’s more than immediate self-interest, namely their own ability to do their jobs. It’s about the much more important result if they can’t. If journalism can routinely be shut down the way the government wants to do this time, we’ll have thrown out free speech in this lawless frenzy.
Like Clay Shirky, I’m deeply ambivalent about some of what WikiLeaks does, and what this affair portends. Governments need to keep some secrets, and laws matter. So does the First Amendment, and right now it’s under an attack that could shred it.

Naked emperor hails sex by surprise
By Pepe Escobar

Information has never been so free. Even in authoritarian countries information networks are helping people discover new facts and making governments more accountable.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, January 21, 2010

            Julian Assange, unfortunately, got it wrong. He should have tried to make it to the Tora Bora – the rugged mountains in Afghanistan and the best place to escape the emperor’s fury, as former al-Qaeda icons Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri can abundantly attest. OK, no broadband; but at least no danger of sex tricks, apart from a brush-off with a rock face.

            World public opinion has not failed to notice the spectacular crossover between WikiLeaks founder Assange’s bizarre Swedish sex saga charges and the emperor’s (and his minion’s) fury. This is stuff to blow Monty Python’s Life of Brian out of the park. To the delight of those “democrats” who want to take him down – or out – Assange, now firmly established as a global underground icon, will spend his next days at London’s Wandsworth prison, which The Guardian has quaintly depicted as “a beautiful example of Victorian prison architecture”. Pentagon supremo Defense Secretary Robert Gates said this is “good news”. What is good for the Pentagon simply can’t be good for the rest of the world.

            The plot thickens. The post-arrest Assange thriller will clarify everything one needs to know about the state of Western democracy as embodied by three of its supposed icons – Britain, Sweden and the United States. Imagine if the roller-coaster narrative so far – including a manhunt merging into a Burn the Witch! (pirate) hysterics among the establishment – was taking place in China, Russia or, ayatollahs forbid, Iran.

            The emperor – and his minions – can hardly wait to return to business as usual, as in an ocean of hypocrisy never contaminated by the hardcore mud-wrestling match which WikiLeaks reveals to be the real “making of diplomacy”. The moment the self-satisfied Democratic West – this happy-ever-after end of history – faces a totally new, and radical, transgression, its response is to try to turn the concept of freedom of information upside down. The emperor is disgusted: Who are these “criminals” – WikiLeaks – who dare to steal what we say we are?

Sex, lies and no videotape

            As Mark Stephens, Assange’s London attorney, had told AOL News this past weekend, Swedish prosecutors want Assange “not for allegations of rape, as previously reported”, but for something called “sex by surprise”, which Stephens said “involves a fine of 5,000 kronor or about $715”. Stephens added, “We don’t even know what ‘sex by surprise’ even means, and they haven’t told us.”

            “Sex by surprise” is legally considered an offense only in Sweden. Anywhere else – including the US and the United Kingdom – quite a few women are rushing to clarify that if it really means what the definition implies, they more than welcome it.

            Four charges are involved in the Assange thriller; one “Miss A”, 31, a blonde, feminist, social democrat whom once wrote a treatise on how to take revenge against men, poses as victim of “unlawful coercion”; then sex with a malfunctioning condom; then “deliberate molestation”; and finally there’s “sex by surprise” with one “Miss W”, 27, an art photographer and avowed Assange groupie.

            “Miss A” must have enjoyed the mess around, because even after the broken condom the first time, they were seen together the day after. And it was “Miss W” herself who invited Assange to her apartment – even paying for his train ticket. During the trip, Assange seems to have preferred his computer to her company – as the dejected groupie told police. Sex ensued, anyway – with no condom.

            Supposing this is the real story, Assange too could have grounds for prosecuting; the resourceful groupie should have handed him both the train ticket and the condom. One thing at least is quite clear; gone are the days of free, independent and much-envied Swedish girls, now obviously replaced by guided-missile prudes.

            It gets “girlish”. The two women eventually get together to gossip – and realize they had something in common; sharing a bed with Assange. That’s when “Miss W” suddenly became supremely troubled regarding her “unprotected sex” and decided to go to the police with “Miss A”. The first prosecutor – a woman – issued an arrest warrant for “rape and molestation”. She was overruled the day after by another female prosecutor. Then the current prosecutor – also a woman – reopened the investigation, claiming she had “new information”.

            Top journalist John Pilger, who along with legendary filmmaker Ken Loach and others offered to stand surety for Assange in the London court for over $280,000 (bail was denied), went straight to the point; “The charges against him in Sweden are absurd and were judged as absurd by the chief prosecutor there when she threw the whole thing out until a senior political figure intervened.” Outside the Westminster court, Pilger summed it all up; “Sweden should be ashamed.”

            Whether this “senior political figure” has some shady Central Intelligence Agency-style designs is open to speculation. But the most absurd thing is that “Miss A” herself told a Swedish tabloid that she never wanted Assange to be charged with rape. Maybe she should tell that to the new prosecutor. Moreover, Assange’s lawyer Stephens has said many times that his client remained in Sweden for 40 days offering to meet the accusing prosecutor to tell his version of the events.

            European-wide laws list 32 violations – rape is one of them – that authorize extradition. Britain is just executing a request from Sweden. European lawyers stress Assange’s best chance is now to accept extradition and face whatever justice rolls on in Sweden.

Freedom riders

            The “sex by surprise” gambit could not be more convenient for a “Western democratic” system viciously attempting to shut down WikiLeaks at all costs.

            Assange begins the op-ed he penned for The Australian this Tuesday with a bang: “In 1958, a young Rupert Murdoch, then owner and editor of Adelaide’s the News, wrote: ‘In the race between secrecy and truth, it seems inevitable that truth will always win’.”

            Now compare with what US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wrote in a Foreign Policy article in early 2010:

            On their own, new technologies do not take sides in the struggle for freedom and progress. But the United States does. We stand for a single Internet where all of humanity has equal access to knowledge and ideas. And we recognize that the world’s information infrastructure will become what we and others make of it. This challenge may be new, but our responsibility to help ensure the free exchange of ideas goes back to the birth of our republic. The words of the first amendment to the constitution [guaranteeing freedom of speech] are carved in 50 tons of Tennessee marble on the front of this building. And every generation of Americans has worked to protect the values etched in that stone.

            What the record is actually showing is that Clinton – unlike Assange and the young Murdoch – is being buried by 50 tons of Tennessee marble. “Free exchange of ideas?” By now, the military dictatorship in Myanmar, the Uzbekistan’s President Islam Karimov, the array of US-friendly autocrats/dictators in the Middle East, and the leadership in Beijing are all saying to themselves that it’s cool to go after a website, their provider, their donation mechanism – and target foreigners without a warrant – simply because they don’t like what the site is saying. The emperor has proclaimed: it’s my way or the (non-information) highway.

            WikiLeaks cables suggest – once again – that Saudi Arabians are the ATMs for everyone from al-Qaeda to Taliban factions. But from Amazon and eBay to PayPal, Visa and Mastercard, everyone bends over to the furious emperor who wants to shut down a website for good.

            The US government doesn’t even register that Spain may want to extradite George “Dubya” Bush for war crimes; but all stops will be pulled, and maybe even laws bent, to get an Assange extradition (for the record: that’s impossible under current US espionage laws). And this from a government that in nine years was incapable of finding the “terrorists” who, according to the official narrative, actually killed over 3,000 people.

            “Sex by surprise” and its derived dodgy charges may eventually keep Assange in jail. Yet this won’t kill the messenger – not to mention the message. It’s all over the net, via BitTorrent – and it’s totally viral (mirrored in 748 sites already, and counting). Moreover, two, three, a million Assanges will spring up. And they will have learned their lesson: if you want to show the emperor is naked, you’ve got to be as careful with your sex partners as you are with your sources.

            Pepe Escobar is the author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (Nimble Books, 2007) and Red Zone Blues: a snapshot of Baghdad during the surge. His new book, just out, is Obama does Globalistan (Nimble Books, 2009).

He may be reached at pepeasia@yahoo.com.

Conversations with the Crow

            When the CIA discovered that their former Deputy Director of Clandestine Affairs, Robert  T. Crowley, had been talking with author Gregory Douglas, they became fearful (because of what Crowley knew) and outraged (because they knew Douglas would publish eventually) and made many efforts to silence Crowley, mostly by having dozens of FBI agents call or visit him at his Washington home and try to convince him to stop talking to Douglas, whom they considered to be an evil, loose cannon.

            Crowley did not listen to them (no one else ever does, either) and Douglas made through shorthand notes of each and every one of their many conversation. TBR News published most of these (some of the really vile ones were left out of the book but will be included on this site as a later addendum ) and the entire collection was later produced as an Ebook.

            Now, we reliably learn, various Washington alphabet agencies are trying to find a way to block the circulation of this highly negative, entertaining and dangerous work, so to show our solidarity with our beloved leaders and protectors, and our sincere appreciation for their corrupt and coercive actions, we are going to reprint the entire work, chapter by chapter. (The complete book can be obtained by going to:



Here is the fifty first chapter


Conversation No. 51


Date: Saturday, November 30, 1996

Commenced: 11:30 AM CST

Concluded: 11; 45 AM CST

RTC: I was reading over your analysis of the present political and business status and I thought it was interesting. At least I thought your final conclusions were not at all outrageous. But I should caution you against sending such things to Kimmel or Bill. Kimmel would be outraged and Bill will pass this on to Langley because that’s what he does.

GD: None of that surprises me, Robert. I was just stating the obvious. At least it is obvious to me. I suppose if you read history, everything is so compressed and obvious but if you are living it, the end is not always clear. Distance is always important in making conclusions. People don’t like to do this because they want this or that kind of ending so they twist and distort the obvious to suit themselves. When I was writing such reports in the Army, I learned very quickly on not to express attitudes that were opposite of my superiors, no matter how obvious they might be.

RTC: A manifestation of early survival instinct, Gregory.

GD: Yes, why not? No one cares about inconvenient truths but they dearly love convenient lies. But the truth is still there, isn’t it?
RTC: Yes, but we never see it until it’s too late.

GD: The French Revolution was entirely predictable but only if you could stand back from it. Not a revolt of the masses but initially a perfectly reasonable desire for a burgeoning middle business class to gain parity with the great triumvirate: The Monarchy, the Nobility and the Church. Of course the latter trio did not want to share power and the ensuing struggle spilled over and the mob got it. Reasonable beginnings but terrible endings.

RTC: But could have anyone foreseen the end?
GD: Good point. A few but not the ones that mattered. A Polish writer, Bloch, very accurately foresaw the deadly trench warfare of the First World War but at the time he wrote, the great bulk of military theorists had more conventional views so no one heard him. Afterwards, of course, he became famous. At the time, not. The same with my views.

RTC: I must confess, Gregory, that I am a little conventional and predictions of social upheaval, anarchy and economic collapse are a bit alien to me.

GD: Yet you were accustomed to predict such things in other governments you wanted to either replace or destroy. Correct?

RTC: Well, we fomented more than one revolution and collapsed more than one economy but we didn’t predict these things, Gregory, we made them happen. You don’t plan to make a revolution or collapse our economy.

GD: No, I don’t. But if you see a man building a house on the beach, doesn’t it occur to him that a good storm might easily topple it? After all, Robert, the Bible says this but, of course, it’s only common sense.  No empire, and we have an empire now, ever lasted forever. Rome did not and England did not. They rise and they fall. It will be the same with us. After two major wars, we rule. Of course we contested with Russia but since we were better grounded economically, we survived. They may yet come back but it’s not for certain. I see China as our immediate rival but they have uncontrolled capitalism under the control of an aging dictatorship and I would predict that they will shoot up economically and this boom will frighten the leaders. Money creates the desire for power and an empowered mass is very dangerous. And we learned after 1929 that if our marketplace had no controls, it would indulge in peak or collapse on a regular and very destructive basis. Remove these controls would be like blowing up a dam and flooding all the countryside below it. Money for a few and disaster for the rest. Clinton has not encouraged this decontrol but God help us if the right wing ever gets into power. We have all kinds of fiscal dinosaurs waiting in the wings, mating with the lunatics of the religious right and they may yet have their day. Unfettered markets and Jesus in every home, no stores open on Sunday and the Ten Commandments in every classroom. Oh, and not to mention a stake through the heart of the evil Darwin. Nuts. The world is only 6,000 years old and the Grand Canyon was created by Noah’s mythical flood. Action and reaction. If that dismal project comes to pass, there will be a reaction, believe me.

RTC: But your predictions of revolution?
GD: People get bored sometimes, Robert, get tired of taxes and dream of some kind of social paradise where everyone is equal. Who knows what monsters are waiting to be born? But the economy is based on credit and like a Ponzi scheme, credit has its limits. You can only use it so far and no further and if we go too far with our credit cards and loans, the end can be easily seen as the python said as he wrapped himself around the tree.

RTC: Well, it won’t happen during the rest of my lifetime, Gregory. Perhaps in yours.

GD: Probably. We need a Bismarck now but we won’t get him. Democracy is its own worst enemy, Robert. Greed, lack of coordination, corruption, and God alone knows what else. And our national education system is a horror. We are cranking out generations of the illiterate and ill-informed and these know-nothings will eventually get into power. Then we need all the help God can give us. Well, we always get what we pay for, don’t we? Political correctness is idiotic. We should teach our children to question, to evaluate and to analyze, not bleat in their pens like placid sheep. It’s like trying to stab someone with a pound of butter.

RTC: (Laughter) Well, a fat and comfortable public….

GD: Yes, a fat public. Well, it’s only a matter of conjecture, isn’t it? What is it the Bible says? While we are in the light, let us walk in the light for the darkness cometh. Something like that. Enough realistic pessimism for the day, Robert. I recall telling Kimmel, when I found out he taught Sunday school, that he ought to let his little charges read the Song of Solomon and he had a fit. But, I told him, it’s in the Bible so it can’t be wrong. He didn’t see it that way. One dimensional. Never ask questions because you might not like the answers. The truth will not make you free but cause spastic colon. Anyway, I like to speculate, Robert, that’s all. If a dam is leaking, is it wrong to predict a collapse?
RTC: The real estate people down below it would not approve of such sentiments.

GD: No, but they probably live on higher ground.

(Concluded at 11:45 CST)


Dramatis personae:


James Jesus Angleton: Once head of the CIA’s Counterintelligence division, later fired because of his obsessive and illegal behavior, tapping the phones of many important government officials in search of elusive Soviet spies. A good friend of Robert Crowley and a co-conspirator with him in the assassination of President Kennedy

James P. Atwood: (April 16, 1930-April 20, 1997) A CIA employee, located in Berlin, Atwood had a most interesting career. He worked for any other intelligence agency, domestic or foreign, that would pay him, was involved in selling surplus Russian atomic artillery shells to the Pakistan government and was also most successful in the manufacturing of counterfeit German dress daggers. Too talkative, Atwood eventually had a sudden, and fatal, “seizure” while lunching with CIA associates.

William Corson: A Marine Corps Colonel and President Carter’s representative to the CIA. A friend of Crowley and Kimmel, Corson was an intelligent man whose main failing was a frantic desire to be seen as an important person. This led to his making fictional or highly exaggerated claims.


John Costello: A British historian who was popular with revisionist circles. Died of AIDS on a trans-Atlantic flight to the United States.

James Critchfield: Former U.S. Army Colonel who worked for the CIA and organizaed the Cehlen Org. at Pullach, Germany. This organization was filled to the Plimsoll line with former Gestapo and SD personnel, many of whom were wanted for various purported crimes. He hired Heinrich Müller in 1948 and went on to represent the CIA in the Persian Gulf.

Robert T. Crowley: Once the deputy director of Clandestine Operations and head of the group that interacted with corporate America. A former West Point football player who was one of the founders of the original CIA. Crowley was involved at a very high level with many of the machinations of the CIA.

Gregory Douglas: A retired newspaperman, onetime friend of Heinrich Müller and latterly, of Robert Crowley. Inherited stacks of files from the former (along with many interesting works of art acquired during the war and even more papers from Robert Crowley.) Lives comfortably in a nice house overlooking the Mediterranean.

Reinhard Gehlen: A retired German general who had once been in charge of the intelligence for the German high command on Russian military activities. Fired by Hitler for incompetence, he was therefore naturally hired by first, the U.S. Army and then, as his level of incompetence rose, with the CIA. His Nazi-stuffed organizaion eventually became the current German Bundes Nachrichten Dienst.

Thomas K. Kimmel, Jr: A grandson of Admiral Husband Kimmel, Naval commander at Pearl Harbor who was scapegoated after the Japanese attack. Kimmel was a senior FBI official who knew both Gregory Douglas and Robert Crowley and made a number of attempts to discourage Crowley from talking with Douglas. He was singularly unsuccessful. Kimmel subsequently retired and lives in retirement in Florida

Willi Krichbaum: A Senior Colonel (Oberführer) in the SS, head of the wartime Secret Field Police of the German Army and Heinrich Müller’s standing deputy in the Gestapo. After the war, Krichbaum went to work for the Critchfield organization and was their chief recruiter and hired many of his former SS friends. Krichbaum put Critchfield in touch with Müller in 1948.

Heinrich Müller: A former military pilot in the Bavarian Army in WWI, Müller  became a political police officer in Munich and was later made the head of the Secret State Police or Gestapo. After the war, Müller escaped to Switzerland where he worked for Swiss intelligence as a specialist on Communist espionage and was hired by James Critchfield, head of the Gehlen Organization, in 1948. Müller subsequently was moved to Washington where he worked for the CIA until he retired.

Joseph Trento: A writer on intelligence subjects, Trento and his wife “assisted” both Crowley and Corson in writing a book on the Russian KGB. Trento believed that he would inherit all of Crowley’s extensive files but after Crowley’s death, he discovered that the files had been gutted and the most important, and sensitive, ones given to Gregory Douglas. Trento was not happy about this. Neither were his employers.

Frank Wisner: A Founding Father of the CIA who promised much to the Hungarian and then failed them. First, a raging lunatic who was removed from Langley, screaming, in a strait jacket and later, blowing off the top of his head with a shotgun.

Robert Wolfe: A retired librarian from the National Archives who worked closely with the CIA on covering up embarrassing historical material in the files of the Archives. A strong supporter of holocaust writers

Register of the Dead in the Bush/Obama war   21


December 1, 2010


            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.


            1st. Lt. Scott F. Milley, 23, of Sudbury, Mass., died Nov. 30 in Logar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using small arms fire.  He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Polk, La.

         The Department of Defense announced today the death of an airman who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. 

            Lt. Col. Gwendolyn A. Locht, 46, of Fort Walton Beach, Fla., was medically evacuated from Kandahar, Afghanistan, on May 22 for treatment of a non-combat related illness.  She died Nov. 16 in Houston, Texas.  Locht was assigned to the 96th Inpatient Operations Squadron, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. 

         The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of six soldiers who were supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.  They died Nov. 29, in Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when an insurgent attacked their unit with small arms fire. 

              Killed were: 

                Sgt. 1st Class Barry E. Jarvis, 36, of Tell City, Ind. 

                Staff Sgt. Curtis A. Oakes, 29, of Athens, Ohio. 

                Spc. Matthew W. Ramsey, 20, of Quartz Hill, Calif. 

                Pfc. Jacob A. Gassen, 21, of Beaver Dam, Wis.

                Pfc. Austin G. Staggs, 19, of Senoia, Ga. 

                Pvt. Buddy W. McLain, 24, of Mexico, Maine. 

             They were assigned to the 1st Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.

December 2, 2010


 The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.


Cpl. Chad S. Wade, 22, of Bentonville, Ark., died Dec. 1 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.

December 4, 2010


            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. 

                Sgt. Matthew T. Abbate, 26, of Honolulu, Hawaii, died Dec. 2 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif. 

December 4, 2010

                The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. 

                Sgt. 1st Class James E. Thode, 45, of Kirtland, N.M., died Dec. 2 at Sabari District, Khowst Province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device.  He was assigned to the 1457th Engineer Battalion, 204th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, Salt Lake City, Utah. 

December 6, 2010-

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

            Lance Cpl. Lucas C. Scott, 20, of Peebles, Ohio, died Dec. 3 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.

December 7, 2010

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

             Staff Sgt. Jason A. Reeves, 32, of Odessa, Texas, died December 5 at Gardez District, Paktia Province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device.  He was assigned to the 2nd Military Intelligence Battalion, 66th Military Intelligence Brigade, Hohenfels, Germany.

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

             Sgt. Nicholas J. Aleman, 24, of Brooklyn, N.Y., died Dec. 5 while supporting combat operations in Paktia province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the Deployment Processing Command-East, Camp Lejeune, N.C.

             The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. 

                Cpl. Derek A. Wyatt, 25, of Akron, Ohio, died Dec. 6 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. 

                Pfc. Colton W. Rusk, 20, of Orange Grove, Texas, died Dec. 6 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif. 

December 8, 2010

                The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

            Staff Sgt. Vincent W. Ashlock, 45, of Seaside, Calif., died Dec. 4 in Khost province, Afghanistan, in a non-combat related incident.  He was assigned to the 890th Engineer Battalion, 168th Engineer Brigade, Lucedale, Miss.

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

            Sgt. Jason D. Peto, 31, of Vancouver, Wash., died Dec. 7 from wounds received Nov. 24 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.

December 9, 2010

                The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

            Lance Cpl. Michael E. Geary, 20, of Derry, N.H., died Dec. 8 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.

December 10, 2010

                The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.  They died Dec. 8 in Balkh province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when an insurgent attacked their unit with an improvised explosive device.

            Killed were:

            Sgt. James A. Ayube, II, 25, of Salem, Mass.

             Spc. Kelly J. Mixon, 23, of Yulee, Fla.

            The soldiers were assigned to the 3rd Squadron, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, Vilseck, Germany.

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