2012-08-04 WikiLeaks News Update: New WikiLeaks releases and Cablegate coverage; Updates on Assange's asylum bid

WikiLeaks has been financially blockaded without process for 609 days.
Julian Assange has been detained without charge for 606 days.
- 46 days at the Ecuadorian Embassy.
Bradley Manning has been imprisoned without trial for 803 days.
A secret Grand Jury has been active in the U.S. without transparency for 689 days.

WikiLeaks News:

  • WikiLeaks released new GI Files:
    • Political Gates looks at how Stratfor analysts described Sarah Palin.
    • WikiLeaks released a series of GI Files on Brazil.
  • WikiLeaks released new Syria Files:
    • Schindler Group (elevator/escalator manufacturers) was not comfortable with Syria's connections to Rami Makhlouf.
    • Assad wanted to remove "Arab fascist regimes" such as Jordan.
    • Emails detail what the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) told Assad.
  • New Cablegate coverage was published:
    • Olympic Azerbaijani boxer, accused of bribery in 2011, was described by an American diplomat as an important and corrupt player in the country's government.
    • An article in Foreign Policy looks at how Obama lost Poland, referencing a WikiLeaks cable which shows Obama scrapping a Bush-era plan to station missile defence systems in Poland to intercept Iranian missiles.
    • An article in Dissenter Voice details the role of a CIA-pampered Saudi Spymaster in Syria, referencing a WikiLeaks cable which shows how Mossad is contributing covert assistance to Saudi intelligence.
  • Peter Kornbluh, guest editor of The Nation's double issue on WikiLeaks and Latin America, was on Democracy Now! discussing WikiLeaks' impact in the region where Julian Assange is seeking asylum. Nation Conversations to discuss WikiLeaks and Latin America.
  • WikiLeaks.org experienced down time for unknown reasons yesterday, but is back online again. WikiLeaks is investigating the cause.
  • The latest anti-leak proposals by the U.S. Government protect the 'leak' powers of Congress. The proposals come from Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who recently renewed the call to prosecute WikiLeaks and Julian Assange.
  • WikiLeaks spokesman Kristinn Hrafnsson and human rights lawyer Jennifer Robinson will be speaking at the Future Perfect conference in Vaxholm, Sweden on August 26. Mr Hrafnsson will also be speaking on August 24.
  • The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission released 52 documents related to the WikiLeaks banking blockade. They can be seen at the ACCC website under "ACCC FOI Request 36/2012".
  • WikiLeaks' fundraising album "Beat the Blockade" is now available on iTunes. All proceeds go to WikiLeaks and the Bradley Manning Defence Fund.
  • Famous filmmaker John Waters commented the following on the state of today's rebels:

    When I was young there were beatniks. Hippies. Punks. Gangsters. Now you’re a hacktivist. Which I would probably be if I was 20. Shuttin’ down MasterCard. But there’s no look to that lifestyle! Besides just wearing a bad outfit with bad posture. Has WikiLeaks caused a look? No! I’m mad about that. If your kid comes out of the bedroom and says he just shut down the government, it seems to me he should at least have an outfit for that.

  • SomersetBean released a "WikiLeaks Support Vehicle" bumper sticker for cars and bikes.

Julian Assange News:

  • Firedoglake's Kevin Gosztola wrote about the fate of Julian Assange, giving an overview about his asylum application, the allegations against him, the refusal of Sweden to question him in the UK, and the real threat of U.S. prosecution. He further wrote about the upcoming asylum decision in another article.
  • RT's interviewed Christine Assange about her son, his asylum bid, and the threat of U.S. prosecution. The interview is available in English, Spanish, and Russian.
  • Julian Assange's U.S. lawyer Michael Ratner wrote about the clear signs of U.S. intent to prosecute Mr Assange and why he is right to seek asylum.
  • RT interviewed WikiLeaks lawyer Jennifer Robinson about Sweden's continued refusal to question Julian Assange in the UK and how the U.S. will not give assurances that they do not plan to prosecute him. They also interviewed Anti-war activist and journalist Don DeBar about Washington's hunt for Mr Assange and how he is correct in his caution.
  • An article in El Telegrafo explains the difference between Ecuador granting Julian Assange asylum or refugee status.
  • There is a new petition at Just Foreign Policy calling on the UK to not allow onward extradition of Julian Assange to the US.
  • Swedish journalists have filed a complaint with the Obudsman about the handling of Julian Assange's case.
  • Joseph Wagner, a former soldier and writer from the U.S., wrote to President Correa saying that he is afraid Julian Assange will be come a victim of the U.S., just like he was himself.

Bradley Manning News:

  • The Bradley Manning Support Network issued a news update for August 3 which covers a new petition for Bradley, his 800th day in jail, how his pretrial confinement will be discussed in October, and FOIA requests to challenge military secrecy.
  • The Bradley Manning Support Network published an open letter about how in order to defend Bradley, the public must be educated about WikiLeaks. The letter was written in response to recent media reports.
  • Daniel Ellsberg, the Center for Constitutional Rights, and the Bradley Manning Support Network have created a new petition to free Bradley Manning.


Upcoming Dates & Events:

Daily, Ongoing: Vigil for Julian Assange in front of the Ecuadorian Embassy.

August 12: Assange asylum decision not expected until after this date.

August 26: Kristinn Hrafnsson to speak at Future Perfect festival, Vaxholm, Sweden.

August 26: Kristinn Hrafnsson and Jen Robinson to speak at Future Perfect festival, Vaxholm, Sweden.

August 27 - 31: Bradley Manning pretrial hearings.

September 13: Bradley Manning pretrial hearing.

October 1 - 5: Bradley Manning pretrial hearings on his treatment at Quantico.

November 2012 ~ January 2013: Estimated time frame for Bradley Manning's court martial.

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