News you can use all day
Unusual collection of links today, all on WikiLeaks. If the government had put this much effort into hunting OBL, we would have had him long ago. More commentary after the list:
- Follow the Money - The online payment service provider PayPal has cut off the account used by WikiLeaks to collect donations, serving another blow to the organization just as it was struggling to keep its website accessible after an American company stopped directing traffic to it. (AP)
- Shut it down - WikiLeaks was battling to stay online on Saturday after Sweden issued a new arrest warrant for its elusive boss Julian Assange, while PayPal axed donations access for the whistle-blowing website. (AFP)
- Cut off the head - Could WikiLeaks survive without Julian Assange? (AP)
- Punish the Readers - The White House told government agencies to take measures to prevent employees without proper authorization from accessing classified US diplomatic cables on WikiLeaks. (AFP)
Tom Hayden responds to Rep. King’s call for WikiLeaks to be labeled a Foreign Terrorist Organization starts off thusly:
I am hoping you will reconsider your call to place WikiLeaks on the list of foreign terrorist organizations. I would hope that as chair of the Homeland Security Committee you would take a more responsible approach than many of your Republican and conservative colleagues who are calling for the assassination of Julian Assange…
Yuppers, they are now calling for Assange to be assassinated. So where does it end? I know I’ve touched on this before, but WikiLeaks is not just the person of Assange, it is an idea. As we have learned through the War on Terror, you cannot battle an idea. And – as someone says in one of the links above – “Look at everything else people would like not to happen online — phishing, spam, porn. It’s all still there.”
And now a word from our friend Mike Fluggenock:
It’s often been said, ever since the days of Usenet and Tiananmen Square, that the Internet interprets censorship as damage and routes around it. As it was in those bygone days, so it is today, as the US State pressures Wikileaks’ “cloud” provider and DNS service to take steps in an attempt to silence dissent.
The problem is — at least, if you’re the US State, it’s a problem — Wikileaks can still be reached on the Web via any number of alternate links, such as through its numeric “dotted quad” IP addresses here and here. It can also be reached through its alternate domains in Switzerland and the Netherlands.
I’d like to encourage everyone reading this to follow that grand old Web censorship-defeating tradition of “mirroring” and passing alternate links around, and post these links to your blog or Web site:
Tough luck, Barack. Better luck next time, Hillary.
Besides being an obvious free-speech issue, this assault is about keeping us, the US Citizens, in the dark about what our government is doing in our names, and the lengths that they will go to to keep us ignorant and uninformed. Hayden says:
The current controversy is less about national security than about securing the official reputations of officials conducting secret warfare. As a result of the WikiLeaks documents, the American public has learned, for example, that:
- our government is deceiving the public and Congress by denying our secret bombing of Yemen;
- our Special Forces are in Pakistan;
- the CIA has directed a secret army in Afghanistan;
- there is a secret Task Force 373 conducting assassinations in Afghanistan.
These revelations do no damage to our national security. Instead, they helpfully add to public and Congressional awareness of improper and arguably illegal behavior undertaken under the cover of secrecy.