2012-05-04 WikiLeaks News Update: Press Freedom Day; Guangcheng cables; DFAT seeks to delay Assange FOI request

WikiLeaks has been financially blockaded without process for 517 days.
Julian Assange has been detained without charge for 514 days.
Bradley Manning has been imprisoned without trial for 711 days.
A secret Grand Jury has been active in the U.S. without transparency for 597 days.

WikiLeaks News:

  • May 3 was World Press Freedom Day. The United States plummeted in its press freedom ranking, falling from 20th to 47th. Despite this, the U.S. still made a statement touting its freedom of speech. EFF's Trevor Timm authored an article which commented on the U.S.'s crackdown on whistleblowers, the secret grand jury on WikiLeaks, and the arrests of journalists at Occupy protests. Politico's Byron Tau also wrote about the attacks on whistleblowers and WikiLeaks.
  • WikiLeaks spokesman Kristinn Hrafnsson was on Press TV's "Double Standards" to discuss the current status of WikiLeaks, the attacks it's facing, the banking blockade, the Global Intelligence Files, the war against whistleblowers in the U.S., and the difficult political climates in Sweden and Australia. Watch the full interview below:
  • A WikiLeaks cable from April 2007 shows that the Chinese Government insisted that blind activist Chen Guangcheng, who recently fled house arrest to the U.S. Embassy, was free. At the time, U.S. Diplomat David Sedney disputed China's claim, saying that being unable to "trust clear statements" from the Chinese Foreign Ministry officials "damages our ability to work with China." See the full cable or view a list all 37 cables which mention Guangcheng.
  • In a recent interview, Carne Ross, former UK delegation expert on the Middle East and author of "The Leaderless Revolution," spoke of the profound implications of WikiLeaks and the hope that it will change the secrecy culture of democracy.
  • An article in The Daily Princetonian discusses how students and teachers are self-censoring themselves from using WikiLeaks material, saying it could jeopardize potential government careers.
  • An article at The Bureau of Investigative Journalism looks at how investigative journalism operates in the digital age, including the role that WikiLeaks plays.
  • A new video in the "Did You Have Any Idea?" WikiLeaks support series has been released, featuring Australian writer Larry Buttrose.
  • Gavin MacFadyen's lecture on "The Real WikiLeaks: beyond Julian Assange" scheduled for May 2 at City London University was cancelled due to illness. City University will release the rescheduled date in due course.

Julian Assange News:


  • The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is again seeking to delay documents relating to Julian Assange requested under the Freedom of Information Act. If accepted, the documents will be delayed until June 3, likely after the outcome of the Supreme Court appeal. This raises the possibility of the U.S. or Sweden vetoing the release of documents.
  • A new play started showing at Gate Theatre in London entitled "Tenet" which has French mathematician Évariste Galois and Julian Assange as characters. See reviews of the play via Spoonfed and The Daily Mail.
  • Professor Ferrada de Noli has posted transcript of his interview with RT about the attacks on Julian Assange and the timing of the WikiLeaks, Assange, and Bradley Manning legal proceedings.

Bradley Manning News:

  • Center for Constitutional Rights attorney Michael Ratner was on Antiwar.com Radio to discuss the immense secrecy surrounding Bradley Manning's trial, the "aiding the enemy" charge, and how you can support Bradley.
  • The Bradley Manning Support Network issued a news update for May 3 which covered Bradley's new photo, dangerous implications from his case and treatment, and continued secrecy in his proceedings.


Upcoming Dates & Events:

May 23: Julian Assange to speak on the impact of increasing transparency at EIM 2012 in The Netherlands.

May 27: "Incident in New Baghdad" to air on The Documentary Channel, 8PM.

June 6-8: Bradley Manning motion hearings.

July 16-20: Bradley Manning motion hearings.

August 27-31: Bradley Manning motion hearings.

September 19-20: Bradley Manning motion hearings.

September 21-October 12: Bradley Manning's court martial.

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