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The Ultra-Right Wing Views of Eddie the Friendly Spook and Citizen Assange

Fast Eddie Snowden’s Pres­i­den­tial can­di­date of choice

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash drive that can be obtained here. (The flash drive includes the anti-fascist books avail­able on this site.)

COMMENT:  In our ongo­ing analy­sis of “Snowden’s Ride,” (U-2 Inci­dent, II) we take note of Fast Eddie’s far-right polit­i­cal phi­los­o­phy, man­i­fested as sup­port for crypto-Nazi Ron Paul. We will also briefly revisit the social Dar­win­ism and reflex­ive anti-Semitism of Cit­i­zen Assange, whose far-right, Nazi-linked Wik­iLeaks infra­struc­ture has melded with Eddie the Friendly Spook’s “op.”  

Snowden’s sup­port­ers have con­cep­tu­al­ized him as some sort of ide­al­ist, embrac­ing polit­i­cal mar­tyr­dom in order to expose encroach­ment to America’s civil lib­er­ties. Noth­ing could be fur­ther from the truth.

Snow­den left a fairly large inter­net foot­print while posted to Switzer­land by the CIA. His mus­ings are impor­tant and very revealing.

Not only is Cit­i­zen Snow­den no cru­sader on behalf of human­ity and civil lib­erty, he is a cyn­i­cal, self-righteous ultra-right winger. (Be sure to exam­ine the text excerpts below.)

Fast Eddie is a believer in:

  • the rec­ti­tude of short-selling, in which he engaged.
  • the elim­i­na­tion of Social Security.
  • return­ing to the Gold Standard.
  • high unem­ploy­ment as a nat­ural and good part of capitalism.
  • the right-wing Repub­li­can view that Obama was debas­ing the cur­rency with his eco­nomic policies.
  • John McCain.

Fast Eddie char­ac­ter­ized any­one who dis­agreed with these extreme right-wing views as a “retard.”

What a swell guy.

It should come as no sur­prise that some­one with an ante­dilu­vian polit­i­cal out­look such as that would fall in behind Nazi pied piper Ron Paul, who him­self is joined at the hip with Mitt Romney.

Note that Eddie the Friendly Spook decamped first to China and then to Rus­sia, obvi­ously to polit­i­cally and diplo­mat­i­cally dam­age both Obama and the United States. Nei­ther China nor Rus­sia is a bas­tion of civil lib­er­ties or inter­net freedom.

Again, this guy is no ide­al­ist and friend of the citizenry.

Nei­ther, for that mat­ter, is his bene­fac­tor and ally Julian Assange. As dis­cussed in FTR #745,  Assange believes in a social-Darwinist phi­los­o­phy, very pos­si­bly deriv­ing from the fas­cist mind con­trol cult the San­tiki­te­nan Park Asso­ci­a­tion, to which he appears to have belonged. (See text excerpts below.)

As soon as his pro­fes­sional bal­loon began to deflate, Cit­i­zen Assange also screeched about being the vic­tim of an “inter­na­tional Jew­ish con­spir­acy” involv­ing the BBC and the Guardian, no less! That Assange  would behave in that man­ner should come as no sur­prise, given his strong links to Holo­caust denier Joran Jer­mas (aka “Israel Shamir.”) (See text excerpts below.)

It was Jer­mas who arranged for Wik­iLeaks to set up oper­a­tions at the Pirate Bay’s servers, financed by fas­cist finan­cial angel Carl Lund­strom (who arranged a Scan­di­na­vian speak­ing tour for David Duke, him­self one of the many unsa­vory asso­ciates of Ron Paul).

Assange him­self has endorsed both Ron Paul and Rand Paul. (See text excerpts below.)

Cit­i­zen Assange’s Aus­tralian Wik­iLeaks Party has delib­er­ately betrayed its Green sup­port­ers in favor of far-right, fas­cist par­ties Down Under. (See text excerpts below.)

Assange’s reflex­ive anti-Semitism is more than a lit­tle reveal­ing about his real polit­i­cal make-up.

QUICK: What is the dif­fer­ence between NSA/GCHQ’s war­rant­less sur­veil­lance and what WikiLeaks/Anonymous does? What kind of over­sight does Wik­iLeaks have? What kind of over­sight do the Anony­mous folks have? What court, judi­cial or con­sti­tu­tional author­ity gives offi­cial sanc­tion to what they do?

For­mer Assange asso­ciate Daniel Domscheit-Berg has also noted that Assange has adopted the phi­los­o­phy and lex­i­con he pro­fesses to oppose. He has used ver­biage iden­ti­cal to that in the Amer­i­can Espi­onage Act of 1917, under which Cit­i­zen Snow­den has been charged. (See text excerpts below.)

Our pre­vi­ous posts on the sub­ject of Eddie the Friendly Spook are: Part IPart IIPart IIIPart IVPart V. Please exam­ine them at length and fol­low the links.

“In 2009, Ed Snow­den Said Leak­ers “Should Be Shot.” Then He Became One” by Joe Mullin; Ars Tech­nica; 6/26/2013.

EXCERPT: . . . . Hired by the CIA and granted a diplo­matic cover, he was a reg­u­lar old IT guy whose life was ele­vated by a hint of inter­na­tional intrigue. . . .

. . . . But as his first spring dawned in Switzer­land, it must have felt cold, for­eign, and expen­sive. Two days after his arrival in Switzer­land, Snow­den logged onto #arsi­fi­cial, a chan­nel on Ars Technica’s pub­lic Inter­net Relay Chat (IRC) server. He’d been fre­quent­ing this space for a few months, chat­ting with whomever hap­pened to be hang­ing out. . . .

. . . . Snow­den logged on to the pub­lic IRC chat room with the same user­name he used across the Web: TheTrue­HOOHA. The chat room was a place he would return to on dozens of occa­sions over his years in Switzer­land, and his writ­ings fill in details about the man who may go down as the most famous leaker in US his­tory. Over the years that he hung out in #arsi­fi­cial, Snow­den went from being a fairly insu­lated Amer­i­can to being a man of the world. He would wax philo­soph­i­cal about money, pol­i­tics, and in one notable exchange, about his uncom­pro­mis­ing views about gov­ern­ment leakers.

Four years later, Snow­den took a job with a gov­ern­ment con­trac­tor for the spe­cific pur­pose of gath­er­ing secret infor­ma­tion on domes­tic spy­ing being done by the National Secu­rity Agency (NSA). In May, he hopped a plane to Hong Kong before the NSA knew where he was going. Once there, Snow­den began a process of leak­ing top-secret doc­u­ments to jour­nal­ists. Snowden’s first leak con­firmed what activists had sus­pected but couldn’t prove: there was a drag­net gov­ern­ment sur­veil­lance pro­gram col­lect­ing infor­ma­tion on every American’s phone calls. . . .

. . . . And he could be abra­sive. Snow­den didn’t short stocks just to make money—he did it because it was the right thing to do. He saw him­self as a pal­adin of the mar­kets, bring­ing “liq­uid­ity” to all. As for those who didn’t agree with him about the right­ness of the gold stan­dard or the need to elim­i­nate Social Secu­rity, they weren’t just mistaken—they were “retards.” . . .

. . . . A Ron Paul man and a short-seller

If Snow­den was get­ting com­fort­able in Geneva, he was fully at home in #arsi­fi­cial. In a depar­ture from his nearly 800 posts in other Ars forums, here he spoke bluntly on mat­ters of state. In the months fol­low­ing the 2008 elec­tion, he dis­cussed his embrace of a return to the gold stan­dard and his admi­ra­tion of its highest-profile champion.

In his more hyper­bolic moments, Snow­den spoke about the fall of the dol­lar in near-apocalyptic terms. “It seems like the USD and GBP are both likely to go the way of the zim­babwe dol­lar,” he sug­gested in March 2009. “Espe­cially with that cock­bag bernanke decid­ing to mag­i­cally print 1.2T more dol­lars.” . . .

. . . . The high unem­ploy­ment rate that was on the way for the US didn’t phase Snow­den; those wring­ing their hands and seek­ing con­ven­tional Key­ne­sian solu­tions seemed soft­headed to him. Obama was “plan­ning to devalue the cur­rency absolutely as fast as the­o­ret­i­cally pos­si­ble,” he wrote. Ris­ing unem­ploy­ment was a mere “cor­rec­tion,” a “nec­es­sary part of cap­i­tal­ism.” . . .

“Report Says Assange Com­plains of Jew­ish Smear Cam­paign” by Ravi Somaiya; The New York Times; 3/1/2011.

EXCERPT: . . . .He [Assange] was espe­cially angry about a Pri­vate Eye report that Israel Shamir, an Assange asso­ciate in Rus­sia, was a Holo­caust denier. Mr. Assange com­plained that the arti­cle was part of a cam­paign by Jew­ish reporters in Lon­don to smear WikiLeaks.

A lawyer for Mr. Assange could not imme­di­ately be reached for com­ment, but in a state­ment later released on the Wik­iLeaks Twit­ter feed, Mr. Assange said Mr. His­lop had “dis­torted, invented or mis­re­mem­bered almost every sig­nif­i­cant claim and phrase.”

The Pri­vate Eye arti­cle quoted Mr. Assange as say­ing the con­spir­acy was led by The Guardian and included the newspaper’s edi­tor, Alan Rus­bridger, and inves­ti­ga­tions edi­tor, David Leigh, as well as John Kampfner, a promi­nent Lon­don jour­nal­ist who recently reviewed two books about Wik­iLeaks for The Sun­day Times of London.

When Mr. His­lop pointed out that Mr. Rus­bridger was not Jew­ish, Mr. Assange coun­tered that The Guardian’s edi­tor was “sort of Jew­ish” because he and Mr. Leigh, who is Jew­ish, were brothers-in-law. . . .

“BBC Pro­ducer Says Assange ‘Ridicu­lous’ over ‘Zion­ist Wife’ Claims”; Jew­ish Chron­i­cle; 3/17/2011.

EXCERPT: . . . A BBC pro­ducer accused by Wik­ileaks founder Julian Assange of try­ing to influ­ence his extra­di­tion hear­ing because he had a “Zion­ist wife” has said the claim was “absolutely ridicu­lous”. Last month Mr Assange, fight­ing extra­di­tion to Swe­den for alleged sex­ual assault, told Ago­ravox, a French news site: “Our rela­tion­ships [with UK media] are not that great, par­tic­u­larly with the BBC. They are going to broad­cast a show…and try to influ­ence the judges. We finally found out that the producer’s wife for this show was part of the Zion­ist move­ment in London.”

He was refer­ring to the Panorama pro­gramme, Wik­ileaks: The Secret Story.

Its pro­ducer, Jim Booth, said this week: “I was the pro­ducer on the pro­gramme so he can only be talk­ing about me. I have got no idea why he said that. My wife is not Jew­ish, has noth­ing to do with Zion­ism or the Jew­ish community.

“It’s absolutely ridicu­lous and insult­ing for me as a pro­ducer. I do not set out with an agenda and he gave the sense there was a Jew­ish agenda. . . .

Is this Julian Assange?

 Unseen, Unheard,Unknown by Sarah Moore.

EXCERPT: . . . . I sus­pect per­haps that there were more sin­is­ter motives than these alone. Some of us had mul­ti­ple birth cer­tifi­cates and pass­ports, and cit­i­zen­ship of more than one coun­try. Only she knows why this was and why we were also all dressed alike, why most of us even had our hair dyed iden­ti­cally blond.

I can only con­jec­ture because I will never know for sure. How­ever I sus­pect that she went to such great lengths in order to enable her to move chil­dren around, in and out of the coun­try. Per­haps even to be sold over­seas. I’m sure there is a mar­ket some­where in the world for small blond chil­dren with no trace­able iden­ti­ties. If she did it, it was a per­fect scam.

any ex-sect mem­bers have said that they were aware that Anne was cre­at­ing chil­dren by a “breed­ing pro­gram” in the late 1960s. These were ‘invis­i­ble’ kids, because they had no papers and there is no proof that they ever existed. Yet we Hamilton-Byrne chil­dren had mul­ti­ple iden­ti­ties. These iden­ti­ties could per­haps have been loaned to other chil­dren and the sim­i­lar­ity of our appear­ance used to cover up their absence. One lit­tle blond kid looks very like another in a pass­port photo. . .

. . . We were to be the ones who would carry on the work of the sect – we were a direct reflec­tion on her – so she was inti­mately con­cerned about our appear­ances. She used to talk a lot about “breed­ing” and talk about us being from the “right stock”. . . .

 Inside Wik­iLeaks by Daniel Domscheit-Berg; p. 211.

EXCERPT: . . . We often dis­cussed the the­ory of evo­lu­tion. If he did have faith in any­thing, it was the the­ory of evo­lu­tion. Julian thought that the stronger mem­bers of the species not only pre­vailed, but pro­duced heirs who were bet­ter able to sur­vive. Nat­u­rally, in his view, his genes par­tic­u­larly deserved to be reproduced.

Often, I sat in larger groups and lis­tened to Julian boast about how many chil­dren he had fathered in var­i­ous parts of the world. He seemed to enjoy the idea of lots and lots of lit­tle Julians, one on every con­ti­nent. Whether he took care of any of these alleged chil­dren, or whether they existed at all, was another question. . . .

Ibid.; p. 200.

EXCERPT: . . . . The result of the pres­sure was that we made more and more mis­takes and could no longer live up to the immense respon­si­bil­ity we had piled upon our­selves. For Julian, this was an oppor­tu­nity to spout his new favorite slo­gan: “Do not chal­lenge lead­er­ship in times of crisis.”

It was almost funny. Julian Assange, chief revealer of secrets and unshak­able mil­i­tary critic on his global peace mis­sion, had adopted the lan­guage of the pow­er­mon­gers he claimed to be com­bat­ing. The extremely curt, soul­less lan­guage of our doc­u­ments, with their absurd acronyms and code words, increas­ingly appealed to him.

For some time, he had begun describ­ing peo­ple as “assets,” not unlike a busi­ness­man talk­ing about “human resources” or a mil­i­tary man refer­ring to his troops. Julian did not mean the word in a nice way. It showed that he saw our peo­ple as mere can­non fodder.

Later, when he tried to kick me out of Wik­iLeaks, he said the rea­son was “Dis­loy­alty, Insub­or­di­na­tion and Desta­bi­liza­tion in Times of Cri­sis.” These con­cepts taken from the Espi­onage Act of 1917, which came into force just after the United States entered World War i. They were mil­i­tary des­ig­na­tions for the word “traitor.” . . .

“Julian Assange: I’m A ‘Big Admirer’ Of Ron Paul, Rand Paul” by Nick Wing; The Huff­in­g­ton Post; 8/16/2013.

EXCERPT: Wik­iLeaks founder Julian Assange gave a strong endorse­ment to the lib­er­tar­ian wing of the GOP on Thurs­day, prais­ing Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and his father, for­mer Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), for their polit­i­cal views.
“[I] am a big admirer of Ron Paul and Rand Paul for their very prin­ci­pled posi­tions in the U.S. Con­gress on a num­ber of issues,” Assange said dur­ing a forum hosted by Cam­pus Reform and trans­parency orga­ni­za­tion OurSay.org. “They have been the strongest sup­port­ers of the fight against the U.S. attack on Wik­iLeaks and on me in the U.S. Congress.

Sim­i­larly, they have been the strongest oppo­nents of drone war­fare and extra­ju­di­cial exe­cu­tions.“
Assange went on to com­mend the lib­er­tar­ian ideal of “non-violence” with regards to mil­i­tary engage­ments, the draft and tax col­lec­tion. He then put forth an argu­ment against both estab­lished polit­i­cal par­ties in Wash­ing­ton, claim­ing that nearly all Democ­rats had been “co-opted” by Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s admin­is­tra­tion, while Repub­li­cans were almost entirely “in bed with the war industry.”

The cur­rent lib­er­tar­ian strain of polit­i­cal thought in the Repub­li­can Party was the “the only hope” for Amer­i­can elec­toral pol­i­tics, Assange concluded. . . .

“Wik­iLeaks Party’s ‘Admin­is­tra­tive Errors’ Incense Greens” by Bernard Keane;  Crikey.com.au; 8/19/2013.

EXCERPT: A deci­sion by the Wik­iLeaks Party to direct pref­er­ences away from Julian Assange’s strongest polit­i­cal sup­porter has incensed sup­port­ers. They should have known better.

The fledg­ling Wik­iLeaks Party has inflicted major dam­age on itself after a dis­as­trous pref­er­ence allo­ca­tion that saw it pref­er­enc­ing far-right par­ties, apol­o­gis­ing for an “admin­is­tra­tive error” and pref­er­enc­ing the WA Nation­als ahead of Julian Assange’s strongest polit­i­cal sup­porter, Greens Sen­a­tor Scott Ludlam.

The Sen­ate pref­er­ence allo­ca­tions revealed yes­ter­day showed, in New South Wales, Wik­iLeaks had pref­er­enced the right-wing Shoot­ers and Fish­ers Party and the extreme-right Aus­tralia First Party, run by con­victed crim­i­nal and for­mer neo-Nazi Jim Saleam, ahead of the Greens and the major par­ties. Aus­tralia First wants to end all immi­gra­tion and to restore the death penalty.

Soon after the release of the pref­er­ences and a firestorm of crit­i­cism erupted on social media, the party issued a state­ment on its Face­book page blam­ing the pref­er­enc­ing on “some admin­is­tra­tive errors”.

The “error”, the exact nature of which remains unex­plained, appears to have par­tic­u­larly incensed pro­gres­sive vot­ers who had assumed Wik­iLeaks would be a left-wing, Greens-style party. How­ever, Julian Assange has already crit­i­cised the Greens’ totemic asy­lum seeker pol­icy as “sim­plis­tic and fool­ish” dur­ing the cam­paign and backed off­shore pro­cess­ing, while crit­i­cis­ing both the major par­ties on the issue. On the week­end, Assange said he admired US lib­er­tar­ian Repub­li­cans Ron and Rand Paul, though he expressed con­cern about their posi­tion on issues like abor­tion. Swap­ping pref­er­ences with minor par­ties of very dif­fer­ent ori­en­ta­tions is also stan­dard prac­tice for all par­ties. One party source told Crikey the “admin­is­tra­tive error” in NSW was quite inten­tional and aimed at the Greens. . . .

. . . . Lud­lam has been Assange’s strongest sup­porter inside fed­eral Par­lia­ment, hound­ing the gov­ern­ment over its lack of sup­port for him and its deal­ings with the US over its cam­paign against Assange and Wik­iLeaks. Lud­lam trav­elled to Europe at his own expense in 2011 to talk to Swedish author­i­ties and Aus­tralian offi­cials in the UK about the case.

The deci­sion to pref­er­ence the Nation­als’ David Wirrpanda ahead of Lud­lam, strength­en­ing the chances of the Nation­als snar­ing the sixth Sen­ate spot ahead of the Greens, is thus an extra­or­di­nary betrayal. . . .

 “Wik­ileaks Party Sen­ate Can­di­date: NSW Pref­er­ences a ‘Poor Judge­ment Call’, not Admin Error” by Ter­ence Huynh; Techgeek.com;  8/26/2013.

EXCERPT: Gerry Geor­gatos, the num­ber one Sen­ate can­di­date for the Wik­ileaks Party in West­ern Aus­tralia, has said that the Wik­ileaks Party’s New South Wales pref­er­ences fiasco was a “poor judge­ment call” and not an admin­is­tra­tive error.

It was not an admin­is­tra­tive error, it was a poor judge­ment call. I’m not [going to come out] here and bull­shit the audi­ence,” he told the Indy­media pro­gramme (24 min­utes into the pro­gramme) on Perth’s RTR yes­ter­day. His state­ment appears to con­tra­dicts the offi­cial posi­tion given by the Wik­ileaks Party that the pref­er­ences were an “admin­is­tra­tive error”.

In New South Wales, the Wik­ileaks Party pref­er­enced the Shoot­ers and Fish­ers and far-right Aus­tralia First party above the Greens – in direct con­tra­dic­tion to the deci­sions made by the National Coun­cil. The fiasco, in addi­tion to the West­ern Aus­tralian pref­er­ences, saw Leslie Can­nold, four National Coun­cil mem­bers and sev­eral vol­un­teers left the party. . . . .

 

Discussion

16 comments for “The Ultra-Right Wing Views of Eddie the Friendly Spook and Citizen Assange”

  1. You did it again, Dave!

    Posted by Jon | June 30, 2013, 1:26 pm
  2. Last week Green­wald reported that Snow­den had dis­trib­uted all of the thou­sands of doc­u­ments to mul­ti­ple par­ties. But the par­ties couldn’t access the files because they were encrypted. Snow­den made arrange­ments so that, should any­thing hap­pen to him, the third par­ties get full access to the encrypted files. Just yes­ter­day, Julian Assange told the world that all of Snowden’s leaks will be dis­closed no mat­ter what hap­pens to him. So while it’s a safe bet that Wik­ileaks has the encrypted files, you have to won­der if Snowden’s “arrange­ment” to have the encryp­tion key released should some­thing hap­pen to him involved giv­ing Wik­ileaks the key to act as the dis­trib­u­tor. Unless it’s some sort of auto­mated thing (maybe Snow­den has to update some­thing peri­od­i­cally to reset the encryp­tion?). Any­ways, it’s look­ing like all of Snowden’s doc­u­ments are com­ing out at some point. It’s now guar­an­teed:

    Wik­ileaks founder says Snow­den info will keep get­ting published

    By Deb­o­rah Charles

    WASHINGTON | Sun Jun 30, 2013 1:39pm EDT

    (Reuters) — Wik­iLeaks founder Julian Assange said on Sun­day that Edward Snow­den made sure that the infor­ma­tion he took about U.S. sur­veil­lance pro­grams will con­tinue to be pub­lished regard­less of what hap­pens to the for­mer U.S. spy agency contractor.

    Assange crit­i­cized the United States for revok­ing Snowden’s pass­port and said it would not stop the clas­si­fied infor­ma­tion taken by the 30-year-old for­mer con­trac­tor from get­ting out.

    “Look, there is no stop­ping the pub­lish­ing process at this stage,” Assange said in an inter­view with ABC’s “This Week” tele­vi­sion show. “Great care has been taken to make sure that Mr. Snow­den can’t be pres­sured by any state to stop the pub­li­ca­tion process.”

    He did not directly respond when asked if Wik­iLeaks was in pos­ses­sion of the files.

    Last week, Glenn Green­wald, the Guardian jour­nal­ist who first pub­lished the clas­si­fied infor­ma­tion released by Snow­den, said Snow­den had made encrypted copies of his files and dis­trib­uted them in case any­thing hap­pened to him.

    Green­wald told The Daily Beast that the peo­ple in pos­ses­sion of these files “can­not access them yet because they are highly encrypted and they do not have the pass­words.” But Green­wald said “if any­thing hap­pens at all to Edward Snow­den, he told me he has arranged for them to get access to the full archives.”

    ...

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 30, 2013, 9:04 pm
  3. @Pterrafractyl–

    The tor­rent is prov­ing more than a lit­tle chal­leng­ing to cover.

    One of the MANY things that seems to have eluded the “guardians of free­dom and civil lib­erty” in the press and blo­gos­phere is how in Hell Assange and com­pany have been able to do what they have done.

    Assange is holed up in the Ecuado­rian embassy in the U.K!

    How is all this being done?

    How did Fast Eddie get around in Hong Kong and then to Moscow?

    Not only Snowden’s activ­i­ties but Wik­iLeaks’ actions as well are VERY obvi­ously intel­li­gence operations.

    It is less clear who exactly is zoom­ing who, here, but all of the insti­tu­tional assig­na­tions go the far-right and fas­cist ele­ments. Is Fast Eddie a BND asset inside CIA and stick­ing it to NSA, Obama, U.S., U.K for CIA/Underground Reich?

    In future posts, we will be exam­in­ing this against the back­ground of the BND/Underground Reich.

    Stay tuned!

    Best,

    Dave

    Posted by Dave Emory | July 1, 2013, 4:20 pm
  4. I would still like to know 2 things. 1) How, after only 4 weeks on the job, Snow­den could deter­mine what doc­u­ments he needed, where they were, and what the doc­u­ments really cov­ered. I’m sorry, but I’ve had quasi tech­ni­cal posi­tions in which I had to access doc­u­ments to find answers to my ques­tions about sys­tem devel­op­ment, fea­tures, etc and it’s a chal­lenge (for many logis­ti­cal rea­sons, much less addi­tional secu­rity con­sid­er­a­tions) to find the most recent doc­u­ments and try to under­stand the infor­ma­tion cov­ered. It has noth­ing to do with com­puter savvy. It has to do with orga­ni­za­tional “logis­tics” savvy and expe­ri­ence in a par­tic­u­lar job. If he has the most cur­rent, com­plete doc­u­men­ta­tion (which I’m not sure he has) I sus­pect some­one else fed them to him. Does any­one else agree with my logic here? 2)The other ques­tion that nags me is why this is sud­denly an issue after all these years?

    Posted by Kathleen | July 1, 2013, 4:34 pm
  5. @Kathleen–

    This is a spook oper­a­tion. That’s how.

    So is WikiLeaks.

    See my response to Pterrafractyl.

    Best,

    Dave

    Posted by Dave Emory | July 1, 2013, 6:19 pm
  6. And now it looks like Snow­den may not be leav­ing Rus­sia at all. Ecuador just backed out of the Snowden-saga and Rus­sia just received an asy­lum request. Snow­den also released a new state­ment via Wik­iLeaks charg­ing Obama with “decep­tion” and the “extrale­gal penalty of exile”. In this lat­est let­ter Snow­den states, “My con­tin­ued lib­erty has been owed to the efforts of friends new and old, fam­ily, and oth­ers who I have never met and prob­a­bly never will”. This raises the ques­tion of whether or not the Wik­iLeaks folks really rep­re­sent ‘new’ friends or old ones:

    Talk­ing Points Memo
    Wik­iLeaks Pub­lishes State­ment From Snow­den
    Eric Lach 6:04 PM EDT, Mon­day July 1, 2013

    Updated at 7:01 p.m. ET

    Wik­iLeaks on Mon­day evening pub­lished a new state­ment pur­port­ing to be from Edward Snow­den in Moscow:

    One week ago I left Hong Kong after it became clear that my free­dom and safety were under threat for reveal­ing the truth. My con­tin­ued lib­erty has been owed to the efforts of friends new and old, fam­ily, and oth­ers who I have never met and prob­a­bly never will. I trusted them with my life and they returned that trust with a faith in me for which I will always be thankful.

    On Thurs­day, Pres­i­dent Obama declared before the world that he would not per­mit any diplo­matic “wheel­ing and deal­ing” over my case. Yet now it is being reported that after promis­ing not to do so, the Pres­i­dent ordered his Vice Pres­i­dent to pres­sure the lead­ers of nations from which I have requested pro­tec­tion to deny my asy­lum petitions.

    This kind of decep­tion from a world leader is not jus­tice, and nei­ther is the extrale­gal penalty of exile. These are the old, bad tools of polit­i­cal aggres­sion. Their pur­pose is to frighten, not me, but those who would come after me.

    For decades the United States of Amer­ica have been one of the strongest defend­ers of the human right to seek asy­lum. Sadly, this right, laid out and voted for by the U.S. in Arti­cle 14 of the Uni­ver­sal Dec­la­ra­tion of Human Rights, is now being rejected by the cur­rent gov­ern­ment of my coun­try. The Obama admin­is­tra­tion has now adopted the strat­egy of using cit­i­zen­ship as a weapon. Although I am con­victed of noth­ing, it has uni­lat­er­ally revoked my pass­port, leav­ing me a state­less per­son. With­out any judi­cial order, the admin­is­tra­tion now seeks to stop me exer­cis­ing a basic right. A right that belongs to every­body. The right to seek asylum.

    In the end the Obama admin­is­tra­tion is not afraid of whistle­blow­ers like me, Bradley Man­ning or Thomas Drake. We are state­less, impris­oned, or pow­er­less. No, the Obama admin­is­tra­tion is afraid of you. It is afraid of an informed, angry pub­lic demand­ing the con­sti­tu­tional gov­ern­ment it was promised — and it should be.

    I am unbowed in my con­vic­tions and impressed at the efforts taken by so many.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 1, 2013, 6:24 pm
  7. @Dave Emory
    Dave, I totally agree with you. I just find it “inter­est­ing” that the “main stream media” don’t ask these basic ques­tions. Thanks for your analy­sis. I’ve weeded out 90 per­cent of the blogs I used to read because of their blind sup­port for Snowald. I fig­ure they have no inter­est­ing per­spec­tive to bring to the table on other mat­ters, either.

    Posted by Kathleen | July 2, 2013, 1:08 am
  8. A use­ful NSA surveillance-scandal fun-fact: 10 out of the 11 cur­rent FISA court judges — the folks that pre­sum­ably approved all of the war­rant­less sur­veil­lance — were appointed by John Roberts:

    The New York Times
    Roberts’s Picks Reshap­ing Secret Sur­veil­lance Court
    By CHARLIE SAVAGE
    Pub­lished: July 25, 2013

    WASHINGTON — The recent leaks about gov­ern­ment spy­ing pro­grams have focused atten­tion on the For­eign Intel­li­gence Sur­veil­lance Court and its role in decid­ing how intru­sive the gov­ern­ment can be in the name of national secu­rity. Less men­tioned has been the per­son who has been qui­etly reshap­ing the secret court: Chief Jus­tice John G. Roberts Jr.

    In mak­ing assign­ments to the court, Chief Jus­tice Roberts, more than his pre­de­ces­sors, has cho­sen judges with con­ser­v­a­tive and exec­u­tive branch back­grounds that crit­ics say make the court more likely to defer to gov­ern­ment argu­ments that domes­tic spy­ing pro­grams are necessary.

    Ten of the court’s 11 judges — all assigned by Chief Jus­tice Roberts — were appointed to the bench by Repub­li­can pres­i­dents; six once worked for the fed­eral gov­ern­ment. Since the chief jus­tice began mak­ing assign­ments in 2005, 86 per­cent of his choices have been Repub­li­can appointees, and 50 per­cent have been for­mer exec­u­tive branch officials.

    Though the two pre­vi­ous chief jus­tices, War­ren E. Burger and William H. Rehn­quist, were con­ser­v­a­tives like Chief Jus­tice Roberts, their assign­ments to the sur­veil­lance court were more ide­o­log­i­cally diverse, accord­ing to an analy­sis by The New York Times of a list of every judge who has served on the court since it was estab­lished in 1978.

    Accord­ing to the analy­sis, 66 per­cent of their selec­tions were Repub­li­can appointees, and 39 per­cent once worked for the exec­u­tive branch.

    “View­ing this data, peo­ple with respon­si­bil­ity for national secu­rity ought to be very con­cerned about the impres­sion and appear­ance, if not the real­ity, of bias — for favor­ing the exec­u­tive branch in its appli­ca­tions for war­rants and other action,” said Sen­a­tor Richard Blu­men­thal, a Con­necti­cut Demo­c­rat and one of sev­eral law­mak­ers who have sought to change the way the court’s judges are selected.

    Mr. Blu­men­thal, for exam­ple, has pro­posed that each of the chief judges of the 12 major appeals courts select a dis­trict judge for the sur­veil­lance court; the chief jus­tice would still pick the review panel that hears rare appeals of the court’s deci­sions, but six other Supreme Court jus­tices would have to sign off. Another bill, intro­duced by Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Adam B. Schiff of Cal­i­for­nia, would give the pres­i­dent the power to nom­i­nate judges for the court, sub­ject to Sen­ate approval.

    Chief Jus­tice Roberts, through a Supreme Court spokes­woman, declined to comment.

    The court’s com­plex­ion has changed at a time when its role has been expand­ing beyond what Con­gress envi­sioned when it estab­lished the court as part of the For­eign Intel­li­gence Sur­veil­lance Act. The idea then was that judges would review appli­ca­tions for wire­taps to make sure there was suf­fi­cient evi­dence that the F.B.I.’s tar­get was a for­eign ter­ror­ist or a spy.

    But, increas­ingly in recent years, the court has pro­duced lengthy rul­ings inter­pret­ing the mean­ing of sur­veil­lance laws and con­sti­tu­tional rights based on pro­ce­dures devised not for com­plex legal analy­sis but for up-or-down approvals of secret wire­tap appli­ca­tions. The rul­ings are clas­si­fied and based on the­o­ries sub­mit­ted by the Jus­tice Depart­ment with­out the par­tic­i­pa­tion of any lawyers offer­ing con­trary argu­ments or appeal­ing a rul­ing if the gov­ern­ment wins.

    The court “is becom­ing ever more impor­tant in Amer­i­can life as more and more sur­veil­lance comes under its review in this era of big data,” said Tim­o­thy Edgar, a civil lib­er­ties adviser for intel­li­gence issues in both the Bush and Obama admin­is­tra­tions. “If the court is seen as skewed or biased, polit­i­cally or ide­o­log­i­cally, it will lose credibility.”

    At a pub­lic meet­ing this month, Judge James Robert­son, an appointee of Pres­i­dent Bill Clin­ton who was assigned to the sur­veil­lance court in 2002 by Chief Jus­tice Rehn­quist and resigned from it in Decem­ber 2005, offered an insider’s cri­tique of how rapidly and recently the court’s role has changed. He said, for exam­ple, that dur­ing his time it was not engaged in devel­op­ing a body of secret prece­dents inter­pret­ing what the law means.

    “In my expe­ri­ence, there weren’t any opin­ions,” he said. “You approved a war­rant appli­ca­tion or you didn’t — period.”

    The court began expand­ing its role when George W. Bush was pres­i­dent and its mem­bers were still assigned by Chief Jus­tice Rehn­quist, who died in 2005. Mid­way through the Bush admin­is­tra­tion, the exec­u­tive branch sought and obtained the court’s legal bless­ing to con­tinue secret sur­veil­lance pro­grams that had orig­i­nally cir­cum­vented the FISA process.

    The court’s power has also recently expanded in another way. In 2008, Con­gress passed the FISA Amend­ments Act to allow the National Secu­rity Agency to keep con­duct­ing a form of the Bush administration’s pro­gram of sur­veil­lance with­out war­rants on domes­tic soil so long as only for­eign­ers abroad were tar­geted. It gave the court the power to cre­ate rules for the pro­gram, like how the gov­ern­ment may use Amer­i­cans’ com­mu­ni­ca­tions after they are picked up.

    “That change, in my view, turned the FISA court into some­thing like an admin­is­tra­tive agency that makes rules for oth­ers to fol­low,” Judge Robert­son said. “That’s not the baili­wick of judges. Judges don’t make policy.”

    For the most part, the sur­veil­lance court judges — who serve stag­gered seven-year terms and take turns com­ing to Wash­ing­ton for a week to han­dle its busi­ness — do not dis­cuss their work, and their rul­ings are secret. But the doc­u­ments leaked by Edward J. Snow­den, a for­mer N.S.A. con­trac­tor, have cast an unusual spot­light on them.

    The first of the doc­u­ments dis­closed by Mr. Snow­den was a top-secret order to a Ver­i­zon sub­sidiary requir­ing it to turn over three months of call­ing records for all its cus­tomers. It was signed by Judge Roger Vin­son, an appointee of Pres­i­dent Ronald Rea­gan who had pre­vi­ously achieved promi­nence in 2011 when he tried to strike down the entirety of Pres­i­dent Obama’s health care law.

    Chief Jus­tice Roberts assigned Judge Vin­son to the sur­veil­lance court in 2006, one of 12 Repub­li­can appointees, com­pared with 2 Demo­c­ra­tic ones.

    While the posi­tions taken by indi­vid­ual judges on the court are clas­si­fied, aca­d­e­mic stud­ies have shown that judges appointed by Repub­li­cans since Rea­gan have been more likely than their col­leagues to rule in favor of the gov­ern­ment in non-FISA cases over peo­ple claim­ing civil lib­er­ties vio­la­tions. Even more impor­tant, accord­ing to some crit­ics of the court, is the court’s increas­ing pro­por­tion of judges who have a back­ground in the exec­u­tive branch.

    ...

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 26, 2013, 8:07 am
  9. Hope­fully Snow­den is a fan of snow because he might be see­ing a lot more snow in his puta­tive new home:

    Edward Snow­den bet­ter off in Rus­sia than US, his father says

    NSA whistleblower’s father says he has lost faith in the US jus­tice depart­ment and his son needs a safe haven

    Asso­ci­ated Press in McLean, Vir­ginia
    guardian.co.uk, Fri­day 26 July 2013 21.16 EDT

    The father of the National Secu­rity Agency whistle­blower Edward Snow­den says his son has been so vil­i­fied by the Obama admin­is­tra­tion and mem­bers of Con­gress that he is now bet­ter off stay­ing in Russia.

    Lon Snow­den had been work­ing behind the scenes with lawyers to try to find a way his son could get a fair trial in the US. Edward Snow­den has been charged in fed­eral court with vio­lat­ing the Espi­onage Act by leak­ing details of NSA surveillance.

    But in a tele­phone inter­view with the Asso­ci­ated Press, the elder Snow­den said he had lost faith in recent weeks that his son would be treated fairly by the jus­tice depart­ment. He now thinks his 30-year-old son is bet­ter off avoid­ing the US if pos­si­ble until an admin­is­tra­tion that respects the con­sti­tu­tion comes into office.

    “If it were me, know­ing what I know now, and lis­ten­ing to advice of sage peo­ple like [Pen­ta­gon Papers leaker] Daniel Ells­berg ... I would attempt to find a safe haven,” Snow­den said.

    As a mil­i­tary ana­lyst more than four decades ago, Ells­berg leaked the Pen­ta­gon Papers, a secret study of America’s involve­ment in Viet­nam, to newspapers.

    The elder Snow­den said he thought Rus­sia was prob­a­bly the best place to seek asy­lum because it was most likely to with­stand US pres­sure. Edward Snow­den applied for tem­po­rary asy­lum in Rus­sia last week.

    Lon Snow­den, a Coast Guard vet­eran who has worked on national secu­rity issues in his career, said he has tremen­dous faith in the Amer­i­can peo­ple and in the con­sti­tu­tion. He said that in a more sub­dued envi­ron­ment his son could get a fair trial, and his actions would be con­sid­ered in the con­text of his desire to expose a sur­veil­lance pro­gram that he and oth­ers believe exceeds con­sti­tu­tional bounds.

    But he said the jus­tice department’s efforts to pres­sure other coun­tries to turn over Snow­den, cou­pled with silence from Pres­i­dent Barack Obama and the attorney-general, Eric Holder, in the face of denun­ci­a­tions from mem­bers of Con­gress who have labelled Snow­den a trai­tor, have eroded his hope for a fair trial.

    On NBC’s Today show on Fri­day, Lon Snow­den said there had been a con­certed effort by some mem­bers of Con­gress to “demonise” his son.

    Lon Snow­den and his lawyer, Bruce Fein, released a let­ter on Fri­day ask­ing Obama to dis­miss the crim­i­nal charges against Edward Snow­den and to sup­port leg­is­la­tion “to rem­edy the NSA sur­veil­lance abuses he revealed”.

    The elder Snow­den and Fein said they were dis­gusted by Holder’s let­ter on Fri­day to Russ­ian offi­cials promis­ing that Snow­den would not face the death penalty if he were extra­dited. They said it reflected a mind­set that Snow­den was pre­sumed guilty and that a sen­tence of 30 years or life would be a rea­son­able punishment.

    In the phone inter­view Lon Snow­den said he had had no direct con­tact with his son, and knew no more about his day-to-day life in Moscow, where he is report­edly stay­ing at an air­port tran­sit zone, than any­one else.

    Lon Snow­den and Fein are start­ing a non­profit group called the Defense of the Con­sti­tu­tion Foun­da­tion to pro­mote the issues his son has raised.

    “In essence, he has passed on the torch of democ­racy,” Lon Snow­den said of his son.

    ...

    It’s worth not­ing that Lon Snowden’s attor­ney, Bruce Fein, is a long-time Ron Paul sup­porter, becom­ing his chief Legal Advi­sor for Paul’s 2012 cam­paign. Some­one from Rand Paul’s office report­edly rec­om­mended Fein to Lon, although Fein dis­putes that he and Rand are in any way affil­i­ated. Ditto with the LaRouch­ies:

    Canada Free Press
    Snow­den Lawyer Close to Sen­a­tor Rand Paul’s Office
    By Cliff Kin­caid (Bio and Archives) Tues­day, July 2, 2013

    In a curi­ous devel­op­ment, NSA trai­tor Edward Snowden’s father is being rep­re­sented by attor­ney Bruce Fein, who appeared with Sen­a­tor Rand Paul at his anti-NSA news con­fer­ence on June 13. Fein says “some­one in Sen­a­tor [Rand] Paul’s office” rec­om­mended him to Edward Snowden’s father, Lon­nie.

    It appears that Fein is try­ing to nego­ti­ate Edward Snowden’s return to the U.S, although his father report­edly hasn’t spo­ken to his son since April.

    Asked about his involve­ment in the case, includ­ing a let­ter he wrote to Attor­ney Gen­eral Eric Holder on behalf of Edward Snow­den and his father, Fein told me on Fri­day: “I do not work for or rep­re­sent Sen­a­tor Paul or any asso­ci­ated group in any capac­ity and never have. I was not rep­re­sent­ing Lon­nie Snow­den at the time of the [June 13] press con­fer­ence. The rep­re­sen­ta­tion agree­ment was signed ear­lier this week. Lon­nie called me on the phone last week seek­ing my advice and assis­tance. I was informed some­one in Sen­a­tor Paul’s office rec­om­mended me and a few oth­ers who could be trusted and would be unwa­ver­ing in defense of the Con­sti­tu­tion, espe­cially the Fourth Amend­ment.”

    But his involve­ment in the Snow­den case isn’t the only con­tro­ver­sial aspect of Fein’s recent career moves. A well-respected con­sti­tu­tional lawyer whose books include Amer­i­can Empire: Before the Fall, Fein has appeared at two con­fer­ences this year spon­sored by the Schiller Insti­tute, a group started by polit­i­cal extrem­ist and con­victed felon Lyn­don LaRouche.

    “I have no involve­ment” in the LaRouche orga­ni­za­tion, Fein told me. “They have asked me to speak at a few events which I did, and gave the same mes­sage I give to all of my audi­ences. The Con­sti­tu­tion is sacred. The Amer­i­can Repub­lic was founded on the idea that every man and woman is a king and queen but no one wears a crown. We take risks oth­ers shun because we believe life as a vas­sal or serf to Big Gov­ern­ment is not worth living.”

    ...

    Fein’s April appear­ance at the Schiller Insti­tute con­fer­ence in Ger­many was under the ban­ner of “A Last Chance for Human­ity.” Video greet­ings came from U.S. Rep. Wal­ter Jones, a Repub­li­can from North Car­olina, who thanked “the LaRouche peo­ple” for the “mag­nif­i­cent job” they are doing on Capi­tol Hill to sup­port his leg­isla­tive initiatives.

    Fein, who also con­tributes to the Huff­in­g­ton Post, a far-left web­site, says his pur­pose at the LaRouche gath­er­ings was to empha­size the impor­tance of the phi­los­o­phy of the Fourth Amend­ment and “to restore the philo­soph­i­cal val­ues of the Repub­lic which evoked the heroic sac­ri­fices at Val­ley Forge, Ceme­tery Ridge, Omaha Beach, etc.”

    The pur­pose of Sen­a­tor Paul’s June 13 press con­fer­ence, which included a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the ACLU, was to threaten a law­suit against the NSA over its ter­ror­ist sur­veil­lance pro­grams. It is doubt­ful, how­ever, that Sen. Paul has the stand­ing to sue.

    In order to restore the lib­er­ties and pri­vacy that have sup­pos­edly been lost because of the NSA pro­grams, Paul intro­duced the “Fourth Amend­ment Restora­tion Act of 2013” in the Sen­ate on June 7. It still has no co-sponsors.
    vtts­leyd
    Beyond the legal ques­tions and whether the anti-NSA cam­paign is designed to bring in names and money for a Rand Paul pres­i­den­tial bid, Aaron Gold­stein asks, in an Amer­i­can Spec­ta­tor arti­cle, “Why Is Rand Paul Being Duped by Edward Snow­den?” Sen­a­tor Paul’s “admi­ra­tion” for Snow­den was obvi­ous dur­ing an inter­view with Sean Han­nity on June 17, in which he went so far as to call Snow­den “a civil dis­obe­di­ent,” com­par­ing him to Mar­tin Luther King, Jr.

    ...

    We should prob­a­bly expect a lot sto­ries about Lib­er­tar­i­ans cham­pi­oning civil lib­er­ties con­cerns going for­ward. The GOP is going to have to tran­si­tion to a more Libertarian-leaning party if it’s going to have a future in the US. And since the Lib­er­tar­ian eco­nomic agenda will lit­er­ally kill off the pop­u­lace, the Lib­er­tar­ian stance on civil lib­er­ties and social issues are going to be the obvi­ous sell­ing points for the main­stream­ing far-right con­cepts as the tra­di­tional base of evan­gel­i­cal vot­ers goes into the night. Fein has dis­puted the notion that a sub­stan­tial drop in the US stan­dard of liv­ing as a result of gut­ting the social safety-net would be prob­lem­atic in the past, and it’s unlikely that such views will be the at the fore­front of the end­less attempts to ped­dle Lib­er­tar­i­an­ism to the masses. That gen­er­a­tion out­reach job will go to groups like that the “Amer­i­can Free­dom Agenda” that Fein co-founded with for­mer head of the NRA David Keene. And, of course, Rand Paul. And now, per­haps from Rus­sia, Edward Snow­den.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | July 27, 2013, 4:47 pm
  10. Ron Paul just had his final inter­view in a series of inter­views with Julian Assange on his new subscription-only web­site that started last month. When asked about his polit­i­cal phi­los­o­phy, he described it as a blend of “Cal­i­for­nia lib­er­tar­i­an­ism” (is that a Rea­gan ref­er­ence?), Greek polit­i­cal the­ory, along with thoughts from the Fed­er­al­ist Paper and some nat­u­ral­ist views. He also had some inter­est­ing com­ments on the role his fam­ily life played in shap­ing his phi­los­o­phy (note that his father, John Ship­ton, is the sec­re­tary of his Wik­iLeaks party) although he didn’t want to define it too much:

    News­max
    Ron Paul: Assange ‘Fight­ing for the Cause of Liberty’

    Thurs­day, 05 Sep 2013 08:33 PM

    By Jen­nifer G. Hickey

    For­mer Rep. Ron Paul on Thurs­day thanked Wik­iLeaks founder Julian Assange for “fight­ing to increase trans­parency in our gov­ern­ment” and fight­ing “for the cause of liberty.”

    Paul’s praise came dur­ing the third and final install­ment of an inter­view with Assange on the Ron Paul Chan­nel — http://www.ronpaulchannel.com– the subscription-based Inter­net chan­nel launched last month by the Texas Repub­li­can.

    Paul con­cluded the inter­view with Assange – con­fined in the Ecuadorean embassy in Lon­don — by direct­ing view­ers to the Wik­iLeaks site where they could donate to Assange’s cause.

    The day after Assange told Paul in the sec­ond part of the inter­view that the United States was tak­ing advan­tage of the human­i­tar­ian cri­sis in Syria to jus­tify a mil­i­tary strike, Paul took a more per­sonal approach in the final install­ment, ask­ing about Assange’s per­sonal philosophy.

    The Aus­tralian described his polit­i­cal phi­los­o­phy as a blend of “Cal­i­for­nia lib­er­tar­i­an­ism,” Greek polit­i­cal the­ory, along with thoughts from the Fed­er­al­ist Paper and some nat­u­ral­ist views.

    “I freely admit to bor­row­ing from parts of my polit­i­cal edu­ca­tion from dif­fer­ent schools of thought and one of those is, roughly speak­ing, Cal­i­forn­ian lib­er­tar­i­an­ism and from your Fed­er­al­ist Papers,” Assange said.

    His polit­i­cal and philo­soph­i­cal diver­sity is reflected in the polit­i­cal party he founded this year and on whose plat­form he is cam­paign­ing in this weekend’s Aus­tralian elections.

    The Wik­iLeaks party “is already the fourth most pop­u­lar party in Aus­tralia and we have a wide vari­ety of peo­ple from what are clas­si­cally known as the right and the left within the party. There are ten­sions about that and I have to try and resolve those ten­sions and explain the com­mon­al­ity,” Assange said.

    Born in Aus­tralia to a mother who was the daugh­ter of aca­d­e­mics and a father who was the son of engi­neers, Assange says polit­i­cal phi­los­o­phy was not some­thing which his par­ents imposed on him.

    “My mother was the daugh­ter of aca­d­e­mics. My grand­fa­ther left school at age 14 and worked his way up through the Chris­t­ian edu­ca­tion sys­tem and to become a very young mil­i­tary intel­li­gence offi­cer in World War II, but my mother was very care­ful not to bias me,” he told Paul. He acknowl­edged that his fam­ily envi­ron­ment was influ­en­tial, includ­ing the divorce of his par­ents when he was 9.

    Accord­ing to Assange, he devel­oped his feel­ings about the world dur­ing a “burst of matu­rity in ado­les­cence” and by expos­ing him­self to a myr­iad of polit­i­cal philosophies.

    Assange said he is hes­i­tant to assign a con­crete def­i­n­i­tion to his beliefs.

    “I have been very care­ful not to define my polit­i­cal phi­los­o­phy because those terms tend to trap you into one camp and then oppo­nents of that par­tic­u­lar camp try to use it against you,” he said.

    As a con­se­quence of the recent NSA dis­clo­sures by Edward Snow­den and dur­ing the Bradley Man­ning trial, Assange said that a unique polit­i­cal phe­nom­e­non is developing.

    Assange sees an “extreme cen­ter” emerg­ing in the estab­lish­ment from both sides of the polit­i­cal spec­trum that is com­prised of peo­ple “more con­cerned about self-promotion, polit­i­cal net­work­ing, and cre­at­ing polit­i­cal dynas­ties, doing favors for mates” than the issues.

    “They are just work­ing the sys­tem,” Assange said. “They don’t really have any ideas they believe in. The extreme cen­ter, which is push­ing for­ward aggres­sively in a par­tic­u­lar direc­tion to pro­mote itself, has led to oth­ers feel­ing like that is not what they want to be involved in. There is now a mag­netic force between those on the right and those on the left,” Assange said.

    What unites the two sides is the sense of injus­tice, he said, adding that the lib­er­tar­ian right views injus­tice in terms of a lack of freedom.

    “Your lib­erty can’t be deprived from you unless some­one else has more power, so there is a com­mon­al­ity between these two sides,” Assange said.

    ...

    If will be inter­est­ing to see how much of Assange’s freedom-philosophy ends up includ­ing the kind of hyper-economic free­doms endorsed by folks like Rand Paul. Because hyper-economic free­dom and real jus­tice are often incom­pat­i­ble ideals.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 6, 2013, 9:42 am
  11. Despite the Wik­ileaks Party’s implo­sion, it sounds like we can still look for­ward to Julian Assange liv­ing out his Pla­tonic ideals in future Aus­tralian elec­tions:

    The New York Times
    Opinion

    Assange as Tyrant?

    By JULIA BAIRD

    Pub­lished: Sep­tem­ber 14, 2013

    SYDNEY

    WHEN asked to explain why he was run­ning for a seat in the Aus­tralian Sen­ate while holed up in the Ecuadorean Embassy in Lon­don, Julian Assange quoted Plato: “One of the penal­ties for refus­ing to par­tic­i­pate in pol­i­tics is that you end up being gov­erned by your inferiors.”

    Plato was “a bit of a fas­cist,” he said, but had a point.

    Imag­ine the cha­grin Mr. Assange must feel now, given that not only did he fail to win a place in the Sen­ate in the recent elec­tion, but he was less suc­cess­ful than Ricky Muir from the Motor­ing Enthu­si­asts Party. Mr. Muir, who won just 0.5 per­cent of the vote, is most famous for hav­ing posted a video on YouTube of him­self hav­ing a kan­ga­roo feces fight with friends.

    ...

    Mr. Assange’s actions were at odds with a demo­c­ra­tic party struc­ture. He had appointed him­self pres­i­dent, for exam­ple, although there was no men­tion of this role in the Wik­iLeaks constitution.

    When a reporter asked him why, he laughed: “I founded it. I mean seri­ously, this is so fan­tas­tic. Look at the name, this is the Wik­iLeaks Party. The promi­nent can­di­date is Julian Assange! Who founded it? I founded it. Are you serious?”

    An unbowed Mr. Assange has vowed to fight the next elec­tion in three years. But to woo the 99 per­cent of the Aus­tralian pop­u­la­tion who spurned him, he’ll need to stop laugh­ing at those who sug­gest that appoint­ing your­self the unques­tioned leader of a party, for an unlim­ited term, might make you a politi­cian after all.

    And not exactly a demo­c­ra­tic one.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 17, 2013, 7:05 pm
  12. There’s an inter­view of Glenn Green­wald in Haaretz about his encoun­ters with Snow­den. The arti­cle is behind a pay­wall at this point, but it’s worth point­ing out that Green­wald states in the inter­view that Snow­den had been “plan­ning every­thing for two or three years”. This helps give us a bet­ter sense of how much time passed between the Snowden’s Jan­u­ary 2009 cha­t­room com­ments about want­ing to see a pre­vi­ous leaker’s balls shot off and his own plans.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | September 21, 2013, 6:54 pm
  13. Now we’re learn­ing that, around the same time Snow­den was post­ing about shoot­ing the balls off leak­ers in 2009, he was also caught access­ing clas­si­fied files he shouldn’t have been access­ing by his boss at the CIA. This was shortly before he left that job for one as an NSA con­trac­tor at Dell:

    The New York Times
    C.I.A. Warn­ing on Snow­den in ’09 Said to Slip Through the Cracks

    By ERIC SCHMITT

    Pub­lished: Octo­ber 10, 2013

    WASHINGTON — Just as Edward J. Snow­den was prepar­ing to leave Geneva and a job as a C.I.A. tech­ni­cian in 2009, his super­vi­sor wrote a deroga­tory report in his per­son­nel file, not­ing a dis­tinct change in the young man’s behav­ior and work habits, as well as a trou­bling sus­pi­cion.

    The C.I.A. sus­pected that Mr. Snow­den was try­ing to break into clas­si­fied com­puter files to which he was not autho­rized to have access, and decided to send him home, accord­ing to two senior Amer­i­can officials.

    But the red flags went unheeded. Mr. Snow­den left the C.I.A. to become a con­trac­tor for the National Secu­rity Agency, and four years later he leaked thou­sands of clas­si­fied doc­u­ments. The supervisor’s cau­tion­ary note and the C.I.A.’s sus­pi­cions appar­ently were not for­warded to the N.S.A. or its con­trac­tors, and sur­faced only after fed­eral inves­ti­ga­tors began scru­ti­niz­ing Mr. Snowden’s record once the doc­u­ments began spilling out, intel­li­gence and law enforce­ment offi­cials said.

    “It slipped through the cracks,” one vet­eran law enforce­ment offi­cial said of the report.

    Spokes­men for the C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. all declined to com­ment on the pre­cise nature of the warn­ing and why it was not for­warded, cit­ing the inves­ti­ga­tion into Mr. Snowden’s activities.

    Half a dozen law enforce­ment, intel­li­gence and Con­gres­sional offi­cials with direct knowl­edge of the supervisor’s report were con­tacted for this arti­cle. All of the offi­cials agreed to speak on the con­di­tion of anonymity because of the con­tin­u­ing crim­i­nal investigation.

    In hind­sight, offi­cials said, the report by the C.I.A. super­vi­sor and the agency’s sus­pi­cions might have been the first seri­ous warn­ings of the dis­clo­sures to come, and the biggest missed oppor­tu­nity to review Mr. Snowden’s top-secret clear­ance or at least put his future work at the N.S.A. under much greater scrutiny.

    “The weak­ness of the sys­tem was if deroga­tory infor­ma­tion came in, he could still keep his secu­rity clear­ance and move to another job, and the infor­ma­tion wasn’t passed on,” said a Repub­li­can law­maker who has been briefed on Mr. Snowden’s activities.

    ...

    While it is unclear what exactly the supervisor’s neg­a­tive report said, it coin­cides with a period of Mr. Snowden’s life in 2009 when he was a pro­lific online com­menter on gov­ern­ment and secu­rity issues, com­plained about civil sur­veil­lance and, accord­ing to a friend, was suf­fer­ing “a cri­sis of conscience.”

    Mr. Snow­den got an infor­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy job at the C.I.A. in mid-2006. Despite his lack of for­mal cre­den­tials, he gained a top-secret clear­ance and a choice job under State Depart­ment cover in Geneva. Lit­tle is known about what his duties were there.

    Mava­nee Ander­son, who worked with Mr. Snow­den in Geneva and also had a high secu­rity clear­ance, said in an arti­cle in The Chat­tanooga Times Free Press of Ten­nessee in June that when they worked from 2007 through early 2009, Mr. Snow­den “was already expe­ri­enc­ing a cri­sis of con­science of sorts.”

    “Any­one smart enough to be involved in the type of work he does, who is privy to the type of infor­ma­tion to which he was privy, will have at least moments like these,” she said.

    Later, Mr. Snow­den would tell the news­pa­per The Guardian that he was shocked and sad­dened by some of the tech­niques C.I.A. oper­a­tives in Geneva used to recruit sources. “Much of what I saw in Geneva really dis­il­lu­sioned me about how my gov­ern­ment func­tions and what its impact is in the world,” he told The Guardian. “I real­ized that I was part of some­thing that was doing far more harm than good.”

    There were other signs that have since drawn inves­ti­ga­tors’ atten­tion. In early 2009, some­one using Mr. Snowden’s screen name expressed out­rage at gov­ern­ment offi­cials who leaked infor­ma­tion to the news media, telling a friend in an Inter­net chat that leak­ers “should be shot.”

    “They’re just like Wik­iLeaks,” Mr. Snow­den — or some­one iden­ti­fied as him from his screen name, “TheTrue­HOOHA,” and other details — wrote in Jan­u­ary 2009 about an arti­cle in The New York Times on secret exchanges between Israel and the United States about Iran’s nuclear program.

    He later told The Guardian he was dis­ap­pointed that Pres­i­dent Obama “advanced the very poli­cies that I thought would be reined in.”

    “I got hard­ened,” he said.

    It’s unclear from the report what, if any, mis­chief Snow­den could have been up to in early 2009 at the CIA. But for a guy that voted for a third part in 2008, but claims to have held off from leak­ing ear­lier because he believed in Obama’s promises (to revise the FISA courts and Patriot Act), Snow­den must have been filled with an immense amount of Hope for very rapid Change in 2008 if dis­ap­point­ment with Obama by early 2009 really was the cat­a­lyst that started to “harden” his worldview.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | October 11, 2013, 8:34 am
  14. Here’s a fas­ci­nat­ing set of fun-facts: One of the first reporters to assist Green­wald and Poitras on ana­lyz­ing the Snow­den doc­u­ments was Guardian reporter James Ball:

    How Edward Snow­den led jour­nal­ist and film-maker to reveal NSA secrets
    Whistle­blower drew Glenn Green­wald and film-maker Laura Poitras together to expose sur­veil­lance programmes

    Roy Greenslade
    The Guardian, Mon­day 19 August 2013 16.52 EDT

    Jour­nal­ists would do well to read a 7,700-word arti­cle by Peter Maass in the New York Times mag­a­zine head­lined How Laura Poitras helped Snow­den spill his secrets.

    It under­lines just why the for­mer NSA com­puter spe­cial­ist Edward Snow­den is so deserv­ing of the sta­tus of whistle­blower. He has revealed that what we jour­nal­ists might have sus­pected about gov­ern­ment sur­veil­lance to be true was indeed so.

    The arti­cle tells how Snow­den first tried to win the atten­tion of Guardian jour­nal­ist Glenn Green­wald by anony­mously email­ing him to say he had sen­si­tive doc­u­ments he wanted to share.

    He fol­lowed that up with a step-by-step guide on how to encrypt com­mu­ni­ca­tions, and then sent a link to an encryp­tion video. Green­wald ignored the approaches.

    In frus­tra­tion, Snow­den con­tacted doc­u­men­tary film­maker Laura Poitras. And it was she who even­tu­ally got in touch with Green­wald, draw­ing the three of them together.

    ...

    After Poitras made a video of Snow­den, duly posted on 9 June, he checked out of his hotel and went into hid­ing. A week later, Poitras flew to Berlin, “where she could edit her doc­u­men­tary with­out wor­ry­ing that the FBI would show up with a search warrant.”

    And two weeks after that she flew to Brazil. It was there, in a Rio de Janeiro hotel, that Maass met her along with Green­wald, where they were work­ing with MacAskill and another Guardian jour­nal­ist, James Ball.

    It was sev­eral days before they all dis­cov­ered that Snow­den had arrived at Moscow airport.

    ...

    James Ball, it turns out, used to actu­ally be a part of Wik­iLeaks. But in early 2011 he left in dis­gust. Why? Israel Shamir:

    The Daily Beast
    05.30.13
    Exclu­sive: For­mer Wik­iLeaks Employee James Ball Describes Work­ing With Julian Assange
    For­mer Wik­iLeaks employee James Ball, a sub­ject of the Alex Gib­ney doc­u­men­tary ‘We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wik­iLeaks,’ on what hap­pened behind the scenes at Julian Assange’s con­tro­ver­sial company.

    by James Ball

    It’s now been more than three years since the world saw the hor­ri­fy­ing footage of the “Col­lat­eral Mur­der” video: civil­ians mown down in a ghastly bat­tle­field error. Their would-be rescuer—a father tak­ing his chil­dren to school—similarly shot to pieces by a U.S. heli­copter gun­ship, its pilots chat­ting and laugh­ing as if play­ing a video game.

    And for those who kept watch­ing, an aspect of the footage often for­got­ten: a Hell­fire mis­sile fired into a build­ing, with no regard of the passerby just out­side. Wait­ing a mere few sec­onds longer could’ve kept him safe—but no. Amid the revul­sion at the ear­lier hor­ror of the clip, this became a mere back­ground detail.

    That footage was just the start of a string of ever-larger Wik­iLeaks doc­u­ment releases, report­ing, and rev­e­la­tions that shook the faith of many around the world in the U.S. government’s activities—from rev­e­la­tions of death squads oper­at­ing in Afghanistan, through com­plic­ity in tor­ture in the Iraq doc­u­ments, to evi­dence of spy­ing on U.N. diplo­mats in U.S. Embassy cables.

    ...

    For me, the film was more like déjà vu—something I’d lived once already. From sum­mer 2010, Wik­iLeaks became my life for months. First, at the U.K.-based Bureau of Inves­tiga­tive Jour­nal­ism, I was part of the team work­ing for 10 weeks inves­ti­gat­ing the Iraq War Logs for Al Jazeera Eng­lish and Ara­bic, Chan­nel 4’s flag­ship Dis­patches doc­u­men­tary, and iraqwarlogs.com.

    I then went a step fur­ther, work­ing directly for Wik­iLeaks for sev­eral months on the embassy cables—analyzing the cables, dis­trib­ut­ing them to staff, writ­ing press releases, appear­ing on TV, and more.

    It was ground­break­ing, impor­tant jour­nal­ism, but it was done against the back­drop of an orga­ni­za­tion crum­bling under pres­sure, cross­ing eth­i­cal bound­aries, and plac­ing peo­ple need­lessly in danger.

    For me, it was too much, and I left. Since then, in a leak of the script of Gibney’s film, Wik­iLeaks has posted that I sold them out for cash (nope), was a wanna-be spy who inter­viewed for MI5 (nope), and stole their data—including, bizarrely, my own copy of a gag order they asked me to sign to stop me speak­ing out on what I didn’t like.

    See­ing your­self por­trayed by Wik­iLeaks is like walk­ing through a cir­cus hall of mir­rors: there’s just enough resem­blance for you to rec­og­nize your­self, but you’re seri­ously distorted—and usu­ally in a way that makes you look grotesque.

    Many made their mind up on Julian Assange long ago—but here, for the record, is what really hap­pened in those fate­ful few months.

    ...

    The rea­son I quit was because of a friend of Julian’s whose activ­i­ties were unstom­ach­able and unfor­giv­able. That man was Israel Shamir. Shamir is an anti-Semitic writer, a sup­porter of the dic­ta­tor of Belarus, and a man with ties and friends in Russ­ian secu­rity ser­vices. He and Julian—unknown to us—had been in friendly con­tact for years. It was a friend­ship that would have seri­ous consequences.

    Intro­duced to Wik­iLeaks staff and sup­port­ers under a false name, Shamir was given direct access to more than 90,000 of the U.S. Embassy cables, cov­er­ing Rus­sia, all of East­ern Europe, parts of the Mid­dle East, and Israel. This was, for quite some time, denied by Wik­iLeaks. But that’s never a denial I’ve found con­vinc­ing: the rea­son I know he has them is that I gave them to him, at Assange’s orders, not know­ing who he was.

    Why did this prove to be a grave mis­take? Not just for Shamir’s views, which are easy to Google, but for what he did next. The first hints of trou­ble came through con­tacts from var­i­ous Putin-influenced Russ­ian media out­lets. A pro-Putin out­let got in touch to say Shamir had been ask­ing for $10,000 for access to the cables. He was sell­ing the mate­r­ial we were work­ing to give away free, to respon­si­ble outlets.

    Worse was to come. The NGO Index on Cen­sor­ship sent a string of ques­tions and some pho­to­graphic evi­dence, sug­gest­ing Shamir had given the cables to Alexan­der Lukashenko of Belarus, Europe’s last dic­ta­tor. Shamir had writ­ten a pro-Belarus arti­cle, shortly before pho­tos emerged of him leav­ing the inte­rior min­istry. The day after, Belarus’s dic­ta­tor gave a speech say­ing he was estab­lish­ing a Wik­iLeaks for Belarus, cit­ing some sto­ries and infor­ma­tion appear­ing in the gen­uine (and then unpub­lished) cables.

    Assange refused and blocked any attempts at inves­ti­ga­tion, and released pub­lic state­ments that were sim­ply untrue.

    Dis­turbingly, Assange seems to have a per­sonal moti­va­tion for stay­ing friendly with Shamir. Shamir’s son, Johannes Wahlstrom, is appar­ently being called as one of Assange’s defense wit­nesses in his Swedish trial. That’s not the only time self has come before principle.

    ...

    All things con­sid­ered, that’s an inter­est­ing twist to the whole affair.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | January 2, 2014, 12:41 am
  15. @Pterrafractyl–

    Note that Ball also worked with Al Jazeera.

    Note, also, that nei­ther Ball nor any of the oth­ers work­ing with the Wik­i­Fas­cists seems to have a prob­lem with all of Wik­iLeaks’ mate­r­ial going through Carl Lundstrom’s PRQ server, some­thing that would have given his milieu access to all of the information.

    Best,

    Dave

    Posted by Dave Emory | January 2, 2014, 7:33 pm
  16. While not at all sur­pris­ing at this point, it’s worth not­ing that Julian Assange just gave an inter­view where he hails the virtues of Bit­coin and unreg­u­lated finan­cial mar­kets in gen­eral:

    meme­burn
    Julian Assange: Bit­coin could estab­lish a new global con­sen­sus [Net Prophet]
    By Michelle Ata­gana: Man­ag­ing Ed.
    05.21.14

    “Bit­coin is the most intel­lec­tu­ally inter­est­ing devel­op­ment in the last two years,” said Julian Assange via a WeChat Livestream at Net Prophet — the annual tech­nol­ogy and trends con­fer­ence. Accord­ing to the Wik­ileaks founder, the next great inno­va­tion that is headed our way will be in the finance sector.

    He reck­ons that the tech­no­log­i­cal inno­va­tion behind Bit­coin is estab­lish­ing a new global consensus.

    Usu­ally, we need laws to estab­lish and enforce the way finan­cial trans­ac­tions take place, but Bit­coin is chang­ing that. Cryp­to­graph­i­cally enforced agree­ments, like the ones com­ing out of Bit­coin, are dif­fer­ent from the norm in as much as the code behind them enforces how trans­ac­tions are done.

    Assange, who is still being granted asy­lum at the Ecuado­rian embassy in Lon­don, sus­pects that in the next few years we’ll see a level of inno­va­tion in finan­cial ser­vices that far out­strips those of the past. The way he sees it, the cur­rent tra­di­tional model of the finance indus­try isn’t work­ing and Bit­coin is dis­rupt­ing it in a good way.

    Respond­ing to a ques­tion on the rise of one dom­i­nant player in some aspects of the inter­net (think Google with search), the weather-worn whistle­blower reck­ons the age of sin­gle dom­i­nance is problematic.

    “I think that is a seri­ous ques­tion — whether most things that most peo­ple use most of the time will be eaten up by a few dom­i­nant play­ers,” said Assange, who again turned to the exam­ple of Bit­coin to illus­trate his point.

    You can quickly form a full finan­cial sys­tem with hedge funds and other such finan­cial ser­vices where there is no reg­u­la­tion, where the reg­u­la­tion is a cryp­to­graphic agree­ment, he points out. The ben­e­fit of such a sys­tem is that peo­ple have to be part of this agree­ment in order to talk to each other.

    Another ben­e­fit is that there is no reg­u­la­tion, because it is all done through com­pu­ta­tion. Finan­cial ser­vices run­ning over the top of cryp­to­graphic pro­to­cols such as Bit­coin there­fore tend to evolve and inno­vate incred­i­bly quickly.

    Assange reck­ons that when it comes dis­cussing inno­va­tion within the finance indus­try, we must under­stand that what we are talk­ing about is the inter­ac­tion of finance. He explains this con­cept as “the abstrac­tion of relationships”.

    “What we are talk­ing about is the inter­ac­tion of finance: the abstrac­tion of rela­tion­ships between organ­i­sa­tions and indi­vid­u­als and the quan­tifi­ca­tions of those relationships.”

    For the renowned hacker, cryp­to­graphic agree­ments involve the need to agree. In turn, he says, we are talk­ing about a way of cre­at­ing new orders and new soci­etal agree­ments that include all of soci­ety, not just new orders that only apply to those who chose to come in and agree to a par­tic­u­lar aspect or cryptographic.

    Assange argues that cur­rent struc­tures around finance from polit­i­cal and eco­nomic points of view mean that the peo­ple in con­trol can often get pushed around by the state. This is why Bit­coin is impor­tant, he says, as it brings about diver­sity, which is needed in any organisation.

    ...

    Julian Assange: Cyber-libertarian or cyber-anarchist? How about a neolib­eral utopian?

    Either way, with each new leak by Assange of his per­sonal pol­i­tics the ques­tion gets raise: which zany far-right par­ties will Assange force his Wik­ileaks Party to endorse in Australia’s next election?

    Julian Assange wants full con­trol of Wik­iLeaks Party, says party figure

    JARED OWENS
    The Aus­tralian
    March 14, 2014 12:31PM

    THE Wik­iLeaks Party has imploded amid a push by Julian Assange to para­chute his asso­ciates on to the party exec­u­tive and shut down its cam­paign­ing activ­i­ties, allegedly over fears the Aus­tralian party is dam­ag­ing his inter­na­tional rep­u­ta­tion, a senior party fig­ure says.

    Jamal Daoud, a mem­ber of the microparty’s national coun­cil, has also labelled “dic­ta­to­r­ial” party chief John Ship­ton — the Wik­iLeaks founder’s father — as “arro­gant and dis­re­spect­ful” and claimed the party holds no meet­ings and has no active membership.

    “They’re not a polit­i­cal party, there’s no dis­cus­sion, no meet­ings, no active mem­ber­ship, noth­ing … It’s like a fam­ily con­ve­nience store,” Mr Daoud told The Australian.

    Mr Daoud said Wik­iLeaks’ national coun­cil had been refused access to the party’s books and that he had been told by Mr Ship­ton the group is $70,000 in debt despite hav­ing no employ­ees and no main­stream media advertising.

    The microparty has largely with­drawn from domes­tic pol­icy debates since win­ning 0.6 per cent of the national vote at the Sep­tem­ber fed­eral elec­tion, and has since focused on defend­ing the regimes of Syria and Rus­sia against per­ceived West­ern conspiracies.

    Mr Ship­ton has refused repeated inter­view requests by The Aus­tralian about the party’s inter­nal oper­a­tions and would not com­ment on Mr Daoud’s allegations.

    The party has been wracked by inter­nal tur­moil since August last year, when the party decided to pref­er­ence extreme-right par­ties ahead of like-minded par­ties such as the Greens.

    Although the party blamed an “admin­is­tra­tive error”, Mr Daoud said the pref­er­ences were directed per­son­ally by Mr Assange, who has been inside the Ecuadorean Embassy in Lon­don since June 2012 fol­low­ing British moves to extra­dite him to Swe­den to face ques­tion­ing over a sex­ual assault investigation.

    “They blamed it on an admin­is­tra­tive error and set up an inquiry that blamed nobody, found noth­ing and no rec­om­men­da­tions were fol­lowed,” Mr Daoud said.

    Solic­i­tor Greg Barns, a for­mer elec­tion adviser to the party, insisted the pref­er­ences directed to right-wing par­ties in NSW was a gen­uine admin­is­tra­tive error. In West­ern Aus­tralia, Mr Barns said can­di­date Gerry Geor­gatos was per­son­ally fond of Nation­als can­di­date David Wirrpanda and delib­er­ately placed him ahead of the Greens’ Scott Ludlam.

    Mr Barns accused Mr Daoud of ped­dling a “nasty alle­ga­tion with no sub­stance whatsoever”.

    Mr Daoud said Mr Ship­ton called him late last Fri­day night and directed him to resign from the party’s national coun­cil, so he could be replaced by one of Mr Assange’s sup­port­ers in London.

    Mr Ship­ton and another coun­cil mem­ber, Gail Mal­one, were also set to resign and be replaced with asso­ciates of Mr Assange, he said.

    “The can­di­dates were already decided for West­ern Aus­tralia, but he said Julian doesn’t want can­di­dates in West­ern Aus­tralia and he wants to regain full con­trol of the party,” Mr Daoud said.

    “He wanted to take over the party but, because under the con­sti­tu­tion nobody can close down the party for five years, what he wanted was for the party to be silent, to run no candidates.

    ...

    So....no party endorsements?

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 21, 2014, 6:58 pm

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