2011-06-14 WikiLeaks Notes: Latest News on #Cablegate Releases, #WikiLeaks & More

ImageThis is a "WikiLeaks News Update," constantly updated throughout each day. The blog tracks stories that are obviously related to WikiLeaks but also follows stories related to freedom of information, transparency, cybersecurity, freedom of expression, and sometimes the national security establishment of the United States because each issue/topic helps one further understand WikiLeaks and vice versa.

All the times are EST. You can contact me at kgosztola@hotmail.com with any news tips. Twitter username is @kgosztola. Also, if you are looking for some insightful discussion of stories related to WikiLeaks, I encourage you to check out the catalog of podcasts posted here at WL Central from the "This Week in WikiLeaks" show I produce every week.

10:15 PM Attorney General Eric Holder's Justice Department not only going after WikiLeaks and its supporters but also targeting antiwar and international solidarity activists. Politico reports on how union support for the targeted activists could be a headache for President Obama as he works toward re-election.

Any way WikiLeaks supporters can make the targeting of WikiLeaks a headache for Obama's re-election campaign?

9:45 PM Greek cables: Ta Nea covers what a US diplomat in Greece thought about the university asylum law.

As described in the cable, "he university asylum law was introduced in 1982 to protect freedom of thought and expression on university campuses, in the aftermath of the military dictatorship. The law stipulates that only university rectors and/or leadership have the right to invite police onto a campus." And, the diplomat who wrote the cable concludes, "The fact that changes to the university asylum law are even being discussed is a big step forward for Greek society, an indication that, for many, this formerly sacred legislation may be past its prime and no longer applicable to today's reality."

9:35 PM WikiLeaks is adopting Bitcoins, Forbes.com blogger Andy Greenberg reports. And, Greenberg says they are doing it just as public debate "over the crypto-currency" is heating up

7:50 PM Website inspired by WikiLeaks -- sagovleaks.com -- being setup by former South Africans to oppose the Protection of Information Bill or "secrecy bill" being pushed by the ANC. The bill is scheduled to be finalized by June 24. The former South Africans' website will allow whistleblowers to make submissions anonymously (like WikiLeaks).

7:40 PM Jacob Appelbaum detained yet again at an airport by Department of Homeland Security. Appelbaum, whose Twitter user data has been subpoenaed and who has received a subpoena to appear before a grand jury empaneled to investigate WikiLeaks, tweeted, "They tried to get me to say that I worked for or work with WikiLeaks ten different ways. I expressed that I work for Tor and the UW."

For his account of the harassment, read through his recent tweets.

6:10 PM Free Speech Radio News interview with Kim Ives, editor of Haiti Liberté, on the latest batch of cables from Haiti being released tomorrow. They show how US deployed obtained permission from Haiti to deploy troops after the earthquake. The next batch is the focus of another round of articles, which will appear on TheNation.com some time in the afternoon.

6:00 PM Next month is the 45th anniversary of the Freedom of Information Act in the United States, writes consumer advocate and progressive political activist Ralph Nader. He talks about working with former Congressman John Moss (D-Calif) to strengthen freedom of information laws. He also talks about what it was like before the US had FOIA:

"...Before Moss and FOIA, the Navy Department refused to divulge to environmentalists the amount of sewage dumped into bays from naval bases. Seems that the Navy brass thought the Russians or Chinese, with such data, could figure out how many sailors were stationed at a particular base..."

"...Each time you see a great segment on “60 Minutes,” or read exposés in the newspapers and magazines, chances are that they were made possible in part, if not in whole, by reporters using the FOIA. Americans learned about how far up the George W. Bush chain of command the torture policy in Iraq reached from an ACLU request under FOIA."

5:20 PM Jane Hamsher of Firedoglake will be at the Alexandria, Virginia courthouse tomorrow to support David House, one of the individuals subpoenaed to appear before the grand jury investigating WikiLeaks. She posts details on how she will be supporting the Bradley Manning Support Network leader tomorrow and what students in Boston have planned.

4:50 PM US government's criminal probe into WikiLeaks continues to escalate tomorrow with another grand jury hearing. AFP covers the expanding investigation reporting the grand jury is scheduled to take testimony from David House. The coverage notes the hearing might be a "strong indication that the US administration, as promised, continues to pursue" the goal of prosecuting Julian Assange.

4:40 PM Egypt cables: The increasingly sour relationship between Qatar and Egypt, from Al Masry Al Youm

9:30 AM The AP reports on "Project Cyber Dawn," a project that consisted of "private computer experts" advising US officials on how cyberattacks could damage Libya's oil and gas infrastructure and rob Moammar Gadhafi's regime of crucial oil revenue."

The study "outlined ways to disable the coastal refinery at Ras Lanouf using a computer virus similar to the Stuxnet worm that led to a breakdown in Iran's enrichment program late last year," according to Raphael G. Satter. Satter suggests this indicates a cyberattack to cut in to Gaddafi's oil revenue might at some point be used in the Libya war.

9:00 AM Rallies to support those subpoenaed to appear before the grand jury empaneled to investigate WikiLeaks

8:10 AM Whistleblowers and pro-whistleblower organizations sign on to a campaign to get Project on Government Oversight (POGO), OMB Watch, the National Security Archive, Open the Government.Org, and the Reporters Committee to publicly take back their Transparency Award to President Obama.