Newsletter: Chelsea Manning v. US War Criminals

We Stand with Chelsea Manning

By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers for Popular Resistance. Chelsea Manning saw crimes and exposed them. Her detractors are aware of the crimes and even commit them. Rather than self-evaluation they continue to hide the crimes even though they are in the public and people can read them. For her part, “Manning said Harvard’s decision signaled to her that it’s a “police state” and it’s not possible to engage in political discourse in academic institutions. “‘I’m not ashamed of being disinvited,’” she said. “‘I view that just as much of an honored distinction as the fellowship itself.’” The so-called Deep State of Security, Intelligence and foreign policy agencies could learn a lot from Manning about shame. Unlike her, they fear people knowing the truth about them, indeed they fear looking in the mirror and seeing the unpatriotic truths about themselves.

Chelsea Manning Defends Her Conduct

Chelsea Manning (center) is interviewed by filmmaker Eugene Jarecki (left) on Sunday, during a forum, in Nantucket, Mass. | Steven Senne/AP Photo

By Staff for Associated Press. Manning’s second public appearance since being released from a military prison in May. “I believe I did the best I could in my circumstances to make an ethical decision,” she told the crowd when they asked if she was a traitor. The 29-year-old Manning is a transgender woman who was released from a military prison in May after serving seven years of a 35-year sentence, which was commuted by President Barack Obama in his final days in office. Several audience members said they were intrigued to hear from Manning. Sara O’Reilly, a Nantucket resident who has attended several past conferences, said the speakers are typically a “little edgy.” She said she doesn’t judge Manning and other people have done “far worse” things. Manning said Harvard’s decision signaled to her that it’s a “police state” and it’s not possible to engage in political discourse in academic institutions. “I’m not ashamed of being disinvited,” she said. “I view that just as much of an honored distinction as the fellowship itself.”

The Saga Of Barrett Brown: Inside Anonymous And The War On Secrecy

Editor in Chief Julian Assange founded WikiLeaks in 2006. (Elekhh / CC BY-SA 3.0)

By Christian Stork for Who What Why – Alleged “hacktivist” Barrett Brown, the 31-year old mislabeled “spokesman” for the shadowy hacker collective known as Anonymous, faces federal charges that could put him away for over a hundred years. Did he engage in a spree of murders? Run a child-sex ring? Not quite. His crime: making leaked emails accessible to the public—documents that shine a light on the shadowy world of intelligence contracting in the post-9/11 era. A critically acclaimed author and provocative journalist, Brown cannot be too easily dismissed as some unruly malcontent typing away in the back of a gritty espresso lounge. He is eccentric. And he was clearly high on something, if only his own hubris, when he made a threatening video that put him in the feds’ crosshairs. But that’s not the real reason for the government’s overreaction. Evidence indicates it has a lot more to do with sending a message to the community he comes from, which the government sees, correctly, as a threat. The Barrett Brown case is simply the latest in a string of prosecutions in which the government pursues anyone involved in making information “liberated” from governmental or corporate entities easily accessible to the public.

Getting Julian Assange: The Untold Story

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange speaks on the balcony of the Embassy of Ecuador in London, Britain, May 19, 2017. | Photo: Reuters

By Staff of Tele Sur – Julian Assange has been vindicated because the Swedish case against him was corrupt. The prosecutor, Marianne Ny, obstructed justice and should be prosecuted. Her obsession with Assange not only embarrassed her colleagues and the judiciary but exposed the Swedish state’s collusion with the United States in its crimes of war and “rendition.” Had Assange not sought refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy in London, he would have been on his way to the kind of American torture pit Chelsea Manning had to endure. This prospect was obscured by the grim farce played out in Sweden. “It’s a laughing stock,” said James Catlin, one of Assange’s Australian lawyers. “It is as if they make it up as they go along.” It may have seemed that way, but there was always serious purpose. In 2008, a secret Pentagon document prepared by the “Cyber Counterintelligence Assessments Branch” foretold a detailed plan to discredit WikiLeaks and smear Assange personally. The “mission” was to destroy the “trust” that was WikiLeaks’ “centre of gravity.” This would be achieved with threats of “exposure (and) criminal prosecution.” Silencing and criminalizing such an unpredictable source of truth-telling was the aim.

Wikileaks Unveils ‘Cherry Blossom’ — Wireless Hacking System Used By CIA

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By Swati Khandelwal for The Hacker News – WikiLeaks has published a new batch of the ongoing Vault 7 leak, this time detailing a framework – which is being used by the CIA for monitoring the Internet activity of the targeted systems by exploiting vulnerabilities in Wi-Fi devices. Dubbed “Cherry Blossom,” the framework was allegedly designed by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) with the help of Stanford Research Institute (SRI International), an American nonprofit research institute, as part of its ‘Cherry Bomb’ project. Cherry Blossom is basically a remotely controllable firmware-based implant for wireless networking devices, including routers and wireless access points (APs), which exploits router vulnerabilities to gain unauthorized access and then replace firmware with custom Cherry Blossom firmware. “An implanted device [called Flytrap] can then be used to monitor the internet activity of and deliver software exploits to targets of interest.” a leaked CIA manual reads.

Sweden Drops Charges Against Julian Assange

Julian Assange speaking about the UN report from Ecuadorian Embassy

By Lizzie Dearden for the Independent. Sweden has dropped its investigation against Julian Assange but the WikiLeaks founder could still be arrested by British police. The country’s director of public prosecutions, Marianne Ny, said the preliminary rape and sexual assault probe has been discontinued. Sweden has dropped its investigation against Julian Assange but the WikiLeaks founder could still be arrested by British police. The country’s director of public prosecutions, Marianne Ny, said the preliminary rape and sexual assault probe has been discontinued. In a court document seen by Reuters, she said there were no further avenues to pursue to take the investigation forward. Mr Assange reacted to the news by tweeting a photo of himself smiling inside the Ecuadorian Embassy where he has been living for almost five years. https://t.co/dDvB1Vekhg — Julian Assange (@JulianAssange) May 19, 2017 The European arrest warrant issued for Mr Assange is being revoked, sparking speculation he would be leaving the London embassy. But the Metropolitan Police swiftly confirmed it would still arrest the Australian over skipping bail when he sought asylum. “Westminster Magistrates’ Court issued a warrant for the arrest of Julian Assange following him failing to surrender to the court on the 29 June 2012,” a statement said. “The Metropolitan Police Service is obliged to execute that warrant should he leave the Embassy.” A spokesperson for WikiLeaks claimed the British government “refuses to confirm or deny” whether it has received a US extradition request, adding: “Focus now moves to UK.”

The Only Reason Julian Assange Is Not ‘Apprehended Yet’ Is He’s Out Of Reach

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By Jon Queally for Truth Dig – In his remarks Wednesday, Comey argued that WikiLeaks—“an important focus of [the FBI’s] attention”—does not practice journalism like other “responsible” outlets, but instead acts as a “known outlet of foreign propaganda” that has harmed U.S. interests. Last month, Common Dreams reported on rumblings within President Donald Trump’s Justice Department that criminal charges were being prepared. Despite the fact that major news outlets from around the world have consistently relied on the information provided by WikiLeaks over the years, Comey on Wednesday repeatedly described WikiLeaks as “intelligence porn” that serves no journalistic purpose. “A huge portion of WikiLeaks has nothing to do with legitimate news-gathering and is simply about releasing classified information to damage the United States,” Comey said. “American journalists do not do that.” Journalist Glenn Greenwald was among those immediately pushing back against such arguments…

As Reports Of Assange Arrest Warrant Emerge, Who Will Defend WikiLeaks?

Julian Assange leaving the Royal Court of Justice on July 13th, 2011. (Photo: acidpolly/flickr/cc)

By Jon Queally for Common Dreams – Though U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Thursday said that arresting Assange was a “priority,” nobody in the government has yet gone public with the filing of official charges or the issuance of an arrest warrant. A lawyer representing Assange said neither he nor his client has been notified of any charges. “We’ve had no communication with the Department of Justice and they have not indicated to me that they have brought any charges against Mr. Assange,” attorney Barry Pollack told CNN. “They’ve been unwilling to have any discussion at all, despite our repeated requests, that they let us know what Mr. Assange’s status is in any pending investigations. There’s no reason why WikiLeaks should be treated differently from any other publisher.” Assange has long believed the U.S. maintains a sealed indictment against him, the key reason he has remained under asylum protection at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. Last week, CIA Director Mike Pompeo stirred condemnation from free speech and journalistic watchdogs by threatening Assange and describing WikiLeaks as a “hostile non-state intelligence agency.”

Trump’s CIA Targets Wikileaks

Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

By Glenn Greenwald for The Intercept – IN FEBRUARY, after Donald Trump tweeted that the U.S. media were the “enemy of the people,” the targets of his insult exploded with indignation, devoting wall-to-wall media coverage to what they depicted as a grave assault on press freedoms more befitting of a tyranny. By stark and disturbing contrast, the media reaction yesterday was far more muted, even welcoming, when Trump’s CIA Director, Michael Pompeo, actually and explicitly vowed to target freedoms of speech and press in a blistering, threatening speech hedelivered to the D.C. think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies. What made Pompeo’s overt threats of repression so palatable to many was that they were not directed at CNN, the New York Times or other beloved-in-D.C. outlets, but rather at WikiLeaks, more marginalized publishers of information, and various leakers and whistleblowers, including Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden. Trump’s CIA Director stood up in public and explicitly threatened to target free speech rights and press freedoms…

WikiLeaks: Afghan Tunnels The US Just Bombed — “They Were Built By CIA”

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By Jack Burns for Activist Post – Linked to the tweet was a New York Times article from 2005, which described a similar cave complex in detail, and added a few additional details worth noting. “Tora Bora” as it’s known, contains “fortified caves” which are reported to contain, “miles of tunnels, bunkers and base camps, dug deeply into the steep rock walls.” The tunnels were built by the “C.I.A.”, with the help of the Bin Laden family, who constructed the complex. Also jumping in on the mockery of the Trump administration is Edward Snowden, who tweeted, “The bomb dropped today in the middle of nowhere, Afghanistan, cost $314,000,000.” And in a follow up tweet, also said, “Those mujahedeen tunnel networks we’re bombing in Afghanistan? We paid for them.” He, too, linked his tweet to The NY Times article mentioned above. Apparently, the ant farm network of tunnels built by the CIA can now be destroyed by the American military in yet another pseudo-show-of-force meant to make the Trump administration seem tough on Syria, ISIS, and Al Qaeda. It was said Bin Laden even helped to run the bulldozers at Tora Bora and knew the labyrinth of tunnels like the proverbial back of his hand.

WikiLeaks Vault 7: 5 Fast Facts You Need To Know

The photo hidden behind WikiLeaks’ Vault 7 tweet. (Flickr/David) (License)

By Stephanie Dube Dwilson for Heavy – WikiLeaks released access to its hugely hyped Vault 7 on Tuesday morning, an hour earlier than anticipated. The passphrase was supposed to be released at 9 a.m. Eastern, but WikiLeaks released it an hour early at 8 a.m. instead, when it was originally scheduled to have a press conference about the release. It turns out that Vault 7 is about a global hacking program being covertly operated by the CIA. Today’s release was just the first in a series of releases about Vault 7. WikiLeaks tweeted a series of six cryptic tweets about Vault 7 in February, causing speculation ranging from Vault 7 being related to 9/11 to Hillary Clinton to a shadow government of some sort. WikiLeaks even dropped another Vault 7 clue in its tweet, with a photo hidden in what looked to just be a plain black background. Now we know that Vault 7 is about CIA’s “global hacking force”…One of the biggest issues that WikiLeaks sought to bring to light in its release was that the CIA’s secret hacking division had produced malware and other means of hacking iPhones, Android phones, Samsung Smart TVs, and even bypassing encrypted apps like WhatsApp, Signal, and Telegram — and then lost control of the malware

Vault 7: CIA Hacking Tools Revealed

Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

By Staff of Wikileaks – Today, Tuesday 7 March 2017, WikiLeaks begins its new series of leaks on the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. Code-named “Vault 7″ by WikiLeaks, it is the largest ever publication of confidential documents on the agency. The first full part of the series, “Year Zero”, comprises 8,761 documents and files from an isolated, high-security network situated inside the CIA’s Center for Cyber Intelligence in Langley, Virgina. It follows an introductory disclosure last month of CIA targeting French political parties and candidates in the lead up to the 2012 presidential election. Recently, the CIA lost control of the majority of its hacking arsenal including malware, viruses, trojans, weaponized “zero day” exploits…

Good Journalism Requires Openness To Foreign Sources Of Information

RT America

By Steve Cunningham for Black Agenda Report. If it wasn’t for Wikileaks, we would think Hillary Clinton’s public position were here private position; that the DNC was perfectly neutral and that Hillary Clinton won her nomination fair and square; and that the sole purpose of the Clinton Foundation was AIDS research. If anything, Wikileaks saved the election from the lies and deception of the Clinton campaign. So what if a foreign entity intervened? There is a stark difference between foreign propaganda, and foreign intervention that leads to more truth being exposed. The difference is that the first one is founded on a lie, and the second one is founded on the truth. There can never be enough truth in a democracy, unless getting to that truth involves the violation of rights. Yet acts of civil disobedience in terms of hacking are necessary at times when so much truth has become obfuscated. We cannot say how much hacking is too much hacking, only when the rights of individuals have become so impugned that it outweighs the value of the hacking. Yet in this instance, so much truth was revealed, so as to outweigh the rights to privacy and other rights of the DNC members.

Stunning Admission From Obama On Wikileaks

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By Craig Murray for Information Clearinghouse. In his final press conference, beginning around 8 minutes 30 seconds in, Obama admits that they have no evidence of how WikiLeaks got the DNC material. This undermines the stream of completely evidence-free nonsense that has been emerging from the US intelligence services this last two months, in which a series of suppositions have been strung together to make unfounded assertions that have been repeated again and again in the mainstream media. Most crucially of all Obama refers to “The DNC emails that were leaked”. Note “leaked” and not “hacked”. I have been repeating that this was a leak, not a hack, until I am blue in the face. William Binney, former Technical Director of the NSA, has asserted that were it a hack the NSA would be able to give the precise details down to the second it occurred.

Assange Agrees To Extradition If US Releases Manning

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange addressing the media and holding a printed report of the judgement of the UN's Working Group on Arbitrary Detention on his case from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in central London on February 5, 2016 (AFP Photo/BEN STANSALL )

By Staff for Agency France Press. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will agree to be extradited to the United States if President Barack Obama grants clemency to the former US soldier Chelsea Manning, jailed for leaking documents, the company said on Thursday. “If Obama grants Manning clemency Assange will agree to US extradition despite clear unconstitutionality of DoJ (US Department of Justice) case,” WikiLeaks wrote on Twitter. Assange has been living in the Ecuadoran embassy in London since June 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden to face sexual assault allegations.