Monday, January 30, 2012

Email To US Grand Jury Lawyers

Alexa O'Brien today posted this copy of a US DoJ form including emails for lawyers apparently working on the WikiLeaks Grand Jury.

So I sent an email to the DoJ lawyers Andy.Peterson@usdoj.gov and John.S.Davis2@usdoj.gov. Note that my email bounced back from John.S.Davis2@usdoj.gov and Alexa confirmed that he no longer works there (he's now helping lead a private Government and Corporate Investigations Team ). Peterson is a National Security lawyer who was hired just after Manning was detained in Iraq.
Dear Sirs,

I write to you as a concerned Australian who has been closely monitoring world government reactions to WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange. I note that your names both appear on DoJ documents relating to the US government's Grand Jury, and I assume you are both actively involved in this investigation.

I urge you to step back and consider the bigger picture here. Tribal loyalties sometimes blind us to broader perspectives.

Those who consider WikiLeaks publications a threat to their national security tend to have few qualms about similar releases embarrassing other nations. Government officials everywhere regularly leak information for their own purposes - often far more secret data than anything WikiLeaks has yet revealed - and of course the media's role is to pubish verifiable information that informs the public, just as WikiLeaks has done.

US Department of Justice lawyers have argued that Water-boarding prisoners is not torture, despite all evidence to the contrary, so I am sure you will have no trouble finding a crime to fit Mr Assange, if that is truly your goal. But persecuting Mr Assange for concocted crimes will only further alienate public support for those you supposedly defend. How is it in the US national interest if nobody trusts their government? What do you achieve by making the U.S. Department of Justice synonymous with Orwellian attacks on the truth?

I urge you to read the following article by Mr Assange, in which he puts WikiLeaks current activities into an historical perspective:

http://www.newstatesman.com/digital/2011/04/civil-war-wikileaks-newspapers

If you are working for the government, and if your government is losing its way, then it is your patriotic duty to speak up.

Just as Private Bradley Manning courageously did.

Sincerely,

Gary Lord
a.k.a. @Jaraparilla on Twitter
Gold Coast, Australia



Tuesday, January 24, 2012

How To Get Blocked By Los Del Guardian

1st Dec 2011. It was a long time since WikiLeaks had handed Los Del Guardian the massive Cablegate scoop. After raking in the profits, journos at the UK Guardian newspaper had also successfully taken the lead in smearing Julian Assange to a global audience. Thanks to spineless toads like former WikiLeaks staffer James Ball, the enigmatic Australian was now widely smeared as an anti-Semite and a sexual deviant.

Guardian CEO Alan Rusbridger's hacks, including his brother-in-law David Leigh, couldn't help high-fiving each other:



Then WikiLeaks published the #SpyFiles, defying media reports that the organisation was set to disappear:




While the global media scrambled to report the latest WikiLeaks release, the Guardian completely ignored the story. I was not impressed :


 It was time to ask Los Del Guardian what was going on...



Finally one Guardian journo went off reservation, at least momentarily, and spoke the truth. James Ball tried to jump in and repair the damage:




James Ball kept insisting that this was old news. Just a bunch of brochures. Nothing newsworthy...



Oh dear.



I tried to point out the ridiculousness of this situation.



  I tried to contact James Ball again but suddenly I couldn't.


Yep, he blocked me.



But that's not all. Shortly thereafter I discovered that I was also blocked by Alan Rusbridger, David Leigh, and every other Guardian journalist I tried to contact. So... Did a Guardian editorial directive go out to the whole office, telling people to block me? For what? Telling them to report the news?





A bit of background: a few days earlier I had contacted dozens of Guardian journos by Twitter, trying to find just one single individual who did not agree with Rusbridger's negative opinions on Assange and WikiLeaks. Ryan Gallagher was the only one who responded with anything moderately supportive, but he soon backed off when pressed (from memory, he took the WikiLeaks Is Good But Assange Is Destroying It line, then told me to shut up).

So why didn't The Guardian want to report on WikiLeaks #SPYFILES release? Could it be that the UK's leading left-wing newspaper is really just another Guardian of the UK Establishment, protecting British companies doing secretive "security" business with despotic regimes around the world? Is that why the Guardian also redacted the names of multiple UK corporations from the #CABLEGATE release?

Yes.

It's what they like to call "national security". Like other newspaper chiefs, Alan Rusbridger gets invites to discuss it with the UK's top politicians and spy chiefs. In secretive meetings, they agree what can and cannot be reported in the media.

And WikiLeaks is a thorn in their sides.

Post Script: An excellent article on Spy Files by Pratap Chatterjee (not a Guardian journalist) was eventually posted in the Guardian's Comment Is Free opinion section (not "real" news). This appears to be the only Spy Files story run by the paper.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

AUSTRALIA DAY CALL TO ACTION FROM CHRISTINE ASSANGE!

AUSTRALIA DAY this Thursday January 26th will be just 5 days before Julian Assange's UK Supreme Court hearing!

PROTEST the Australian Government's abandonment of a fellow Aussie, Walkley award winning journalist, and Editor in Chief of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange!

SHOW YOUR SUPPORT for Julian ahead of the hearing by flying a photo of Julian and a message of support along with your Aussie flag or other  merchandise!

GET CREATIVE!!!

DISCOUNT/DOLLAR SHOPS have a huge range of cheap Aussie flags/fun merchandise for you to use! 

HANG a large Aussie flag from your balcony or veranda with "Free Assange "on it! Fix a photo of Julian to both sides of a flag & WAVE proudly!

MAKE an Australia Day sarong or a simple top, a bandana, headband, armband, or simple doggie coat and affix a photo or message of support!

FIX photos and messages to hoodies, capes, hats! Create giant pin-on buttons, giant ties, car stickers and window shades etc!

FACTS of the INJUSTICE - read http://justice4assange.com 

Legal brief to Canberra - https://www.wlcentral.org/node/1418 

PUBLICIZE use the hashtags #OpAassange and #OZday4JA

Forward emails to your friends, family, politicians and the media! Flood twitter and talkback radio, post comments on articles, facebook, and blogs! Include a picture of you with your flag protest! Let's get the conversation started!

Thanking you,

Christine Assange

christineassange@gmail.com
Follow me on twitter: @assangec

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Liberal MP Agrees Gillard "Misstepped" with "Unfair" Assange Comments

UPDATE 1: I have set up a new blog with a list of ALL Oz MPs and Senators and their responses regarding WikiLeaks and Assange. Check out OzWikiWatch!
UPDATE 2. I have replied to my local MPs response and asked for an interview. See text below.
I finally got a response from my local MP after asking him to speak up for Julian Assange:
Dear Mr Lord

Thank you for your recent email WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. I apologise for the delay in replying.

As you say, Prime Minister misstepped when originally commenting on Mr Assange’s case. While unfair, I am not sure whether those comments have in fact prejudiced the extradition application under appeal in the United Kingdom.

Given your strong views about Mr Assange, I encourage you to contact the newly-appointed Attorney-General, the Hon Nicola Roxon MP, to make your case for government intervention.

As a Member of the Labor Government, the Attorney-General is best placed to advocate on his behalf:

The Hon Nicola Roxon MP

Attorney-General
PO Box 6022
Parliament House
CANBERRA ACT 2600

nicola.roxon.mp@aph.gov.au

Thank you again for taking the time to let me know your views.

Yours sincerely

Steven

Steven Ciobo MPhttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
Federal Member for Moncrieff
67 Thomas Drive
Chevron Island Qld 4217
PO Box 4922
Gold Coast MC Qld 9726
T (07) 5504 6000 F (07) 5504 6944
______________________
stevenciobo.com


It's not a lot, but it's something (my bolded text). If we have MPs on record like this then it makes it hard for them to change positions at a later date. Please contact your own local MP and ask them to support WikiLeaks.

Meanwhile, I will urge my local MP to do a bit more... ;-)

UPDATE 2: My latest reply to Mr Ciobo:
Mr Ciobo,

Thank you for replying to my email. I assume you aware that Julian Assange faces his final UK appeal in the Supreme Court this week. If he is extradited to Sweden, he will be held in solitary confinement until his case is heard by a jury of three including two politicians. Such conditions make a mockery of justice.

Whatever the outcome of the Swedish case - and even if the UK court overturns his extradition order - the US government is determined to extradite him to face a secretive Grand Jury in Virginia, which has been seeking to build a case against Assange for over a year. This is despite the fact that - as even the AFP have noted - Assange has broken no laws. In fact, WikiLeaks was specifically set up to work withing existing legal frameworks.

In these circumstances, silence by Australian politicians such as yourself is not acceptable. It is not enough to merely note that Assange has a right to a fair trial, and to forward any further contact to the Attorney General or other departments. Australian MPs and Senators need to speak up publicly and demand assurances that Julian Assange will be allowed to return home to and left to live and work in peace. Your voice is needed NOW!

To this end, I have set up a public register of Australian MPs and Senators here: http://ozwikiwatch.blogspot.com

You are being rated on your expressed public support for WikiLeaks and Assange. With polls showing that WikiLeaks has the backing of 80% of Australians, you can be assured that this will be a major issue at the next election.

I would like to make an appointment to discuss this issue with you in more details. Please let me know a convenient time. In the meanwhile, it would be helpful if you familiarise yourself further with the details of the case here: http://www.justice4assange.com

Thanking you,

Gary Lord
(a.k.a @Jaraparilla on Twitter)