Friday, December 10, 2010

Something's Not Right.

I don't like Julian Assange. I feel that his compromise of the U.S. diplomatic cables should earn him a spot in prison. I know many people disagree with me, but I have a feeling that his supporters will end up with egg on their faces.  Whilst I think he should go to prison, it should not be on the grounds of rape, as clearly his actions in Sweden in no way constitute rape.  Roissy's take on the motivations of probably spot on. These "victims" are spurned groupies who want their "revenge". The fact that a country like Sweden has criminal prosecutors who can construe rape out of what many people would consider consensual sexual relations, shows just how politically correct Sweden has become. Sweden is ruled by a Feminist Taliban.


Whilst many people are hot under the collar about the rape charge against Assange(justified) I'm more interested in the man and his motivations. Several stories have been slowly been bubbling up on the internet, and whether this is a third party source of disinformation, I don't know, but they seem to point to a less than savoury character and someone who is not entirely objective when it comes to "transparency"

The first article is from Der Spiegel. ( I regard this as a reliable source of information):


Wikileaks Spokesman Quits.

Firstly, I wasn't aware that there was such disagreement amongst the staff. I understand that employees can disagree with the boss and his style of management but this quote seems to indicate something else at play.

Take the US Army Afghanistan documents at the end of July, for example. The video of the air strike in Baghdad in 2007, "Collateral Damage," was an extreme feat of strength for us. During the same period of time we also could have published dozens of other documents. And through our rising recognition in the last six months, we have again received a lot of material that urgently needs to be processed and published. 

and,

Schmitt: No, pressure from the outside is part of this. But this one-dimensional confrontation with the USA is not what we set out to do. For us it is always about uncovering corruption and abuse of power, wherever it happens -- on the smaller and larger scale -- around the world. 
It appears that "employees" want to expose corruption around the world, Assange seems more intent on highlighting the U.S.'s shortcomings.  I'm not an uncritical supporter of the U.S. but why the slant? Why don't the Russians, French, Polish, etc feel the heat?


More of the same from this article.

The next article is,  TIME's Julian Assange Interview: Full Transcript/Audio.
(I regard time as a less reliable source than Der Spiegel, but reliable still)

JA: Let me just talk about transparency for a moment. It is not our goal to achieve a more transparent society; it's our goal to achieve a more just society. And most of the times, transparency and openness tends to lead in that direction, because abusive plans or behavior get opposed, and so those organizations which tend to commit them are opposed before the plan's implemented, or it's an exposure or something previously done, the organization tends to lose a [inaudible], which is then transferred to another, and then we [inaudible] organization. For the rise of social media, it's quite interesting. When we first started, we thought we would have the analytical work done by bloggers and people who wrote Wikipedia articles and so on. And we thought that was a natural, given that we had lots of quality, important content. Surely it's more interesting to write an article about top-secret Chinese [inaudible] or an internal document from Somalia or secret documents revealing what happened in [inaudible], all of which we published, than it is to simply write a blog about what's on the front page of the New York Times, or about your cat or something. But actually it turns out that that is not at all true. The bulk of the heavy lifting — heavy analytical lifting — that is done with our materials is done by us, and is done by professional journalists we work with and by professional human-rights activists. It is not done by the broader community. However, once the initial lifting is done, once a story becomes a story, becomes a news article, then we start to see community involvement, which digs deeper and provides more perspective. So the social networks tend to be, for us, an amplifier of what we are doing. And also a supply of sources and for us.

That's right. Julian decides what's necessary to achieve our Just society and in collaboration with Journalists feeds it to the proles. The social media merely a mechanism to spread prole feed. He is about controlling information to achieve a "just society". This isn't an orginisation meant to "energize" and empower the people, it's an organisation designed to control the people. Note, the important role the official media gets to play in this. This type of selective reporting to achieve a "just society" has been seen before.

Then there is this article in the Haaretz (Reliable source but left wing.)

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on Wednesday defended his disclosure of classified U.S. documents by singling out Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as an example of a world leader who believes the publications will aid global diplomacy. 

"We can see the Israeli Prime Minister [Benjamin] Netanyahu coming out with a very interesting statement that leaders should speak in public like they do in private whenever they can," Assange told Time Magazine in an interview on Wednesday, days after his online whistleblower published thousands of secret diplomatic cables. 

Look, even Israeli's regard their politicians as corrupt. No matter what your position on Israel, Julian's blessing of Netanyahu is a bit rich. This from one of the leaked cables.

Binyamin Netanyahu, Israeli prime minister, is “elegant and charming” but never keeps his promises, according to a cable from Cairo.
The "corrupt" Americans think him a liar but Julian is pushing him as some kind of fellow traveller.
What gives?

Normally I would regard articles from the Syria Truth as pure tinfoil, but as several commentators have pointed out, damaging cables concerning Israel have been rare. Particularly, comments concerning the recent war in Lebanon against Hezbollah. This is odd, given the enormous interest that the U.S has in Mideast politics. Sometimes what's interesting is not what's in the cables, but what's not.

This article seems to suggest that Assange met with the Israelis in Switzerland and they bought him off. (Use Google translate) Perhaps Assange's desire to negotiate with the U.S. state department was not only based on a desire for harm minimisation. You sort of wonder? It could all be bullshit.

I want to make it perfectly clear that I don't think that Assange is an Israeli agent, rather, he is a "businessman" who is prepared to do deals. I think that had the U.S. state department been a bit more "pragmatic" far fewer cables would have been released.  Maybe this is all unwarranted and my distrust of Mr Assange unfair.

But check out Wikileaks new headquarters.  
Clearly, they're doing it tough.

I think his supporters will be disappointed.

(Note. Any Anti-Semitic comments will be immediately deleted. Fair criticism of Israel is acceptable, but if I feel it crosses the line, it's deleted. No argument will be entered into. I'm quite happy to censor.)

13 comments:

**** ***** said...

that bunker looks like something out of a damn austin powers movie. wow. life imitates are or....?

The Social Pathologist said...

@**** ******

life imitates are or....?

Yeah, I don't get it. If you're trying to get people to pass data to you and avoid foreign agent shutdown, wouldn't you want to be discrete and distributed?

Secondly, the Assange lair must of cost a hell of a lot of money. Wikileaks has become a multinational corporation.

Kathy Farrelly said...

Well said, SP..
I have this uneasy feeling about Assange.
I don't believe he is the moral crusader that he makes himself out to be.
Assange said "capable generous men do not create victims, they nurture them"

Sorry, don't buy it.

Who is to say how many victims may be created because of these so-called leaks?

What real control does Assange have, here, once he releases sensitive (often embarrassing) information?

How can he possibly forsee the fallout?

I just don't believe his motivations are entirely altruistic.

He's playing with fire.

GS said...

Or there could be other motivations for his actions

GS said...

BTW, I'm a big fan of your work, especially your take on political correctness.

The Social Pathologist said...

@Kathy

Thanks for dropping by.

Personally I think he (Assange) is a amoral libertarian ideologue on a power trip. And he is a prejudicial ideologue at that. What interests me is why the "wikileaks team split". As I said before, personality clashes are a normal occurrence in all organisations and there is no doubt that this was present in the wikileaks crowd.

However another factor at play was ideological differences between Assange and the others. Clearly the others wanted unbiased transparency, whereas Assange seemed to want to go after the U.S. particularly. It strange to see that the biggest supporters of Assange are the socialists and libertarians. An alliance of Marx and Rothbard. Menken was right, why pay for entertainment when, in a democracy, real life is so absurd.

I personally think that cables will cause enormous damage. I've been watching the Norks and as expected they've gone quiet. I think the China bombshell (about not caring if the regime failed) may have caught them by suprise. I note that the Chinese have sent a delegation to see them today to "reassure" them about their relationship.

I agree he is playing with fire. People forget that the entry of China into North Korea was predicated on Kim Philby's secret knowledge that Truman wasn't going to use the bomb.

The Social Pathologist said...

GS.

Thanks for the kind comments.

I agree there could be other motivations for his actions. His U.S. centric stance may be based on a desire to generate publicity rather than anti-U.S bias. Still from all the other comments I've read, I don't think he is all that friendly to the U.S.

Hopefully I'll have more PC commentary in the near future.

Vincent Ignatius said...

Every man has a price.

That reclusive mathematician who cares nothing for material possessions. Show him how to prove the Riemann hypothesis and he'll give you the world.

The Social Pathologist said...

@Vincent Ignatius.

True, though I don't think he was bought, he was in the market to sell.

Alice said...

"This article seems to suggest that Assange met with the Israelis in Switzerland and they bought him off. (Use Google translate) Perhaps Assange's desire to negotiate with the U.S. state department was not only based on a desire for harm minimisation. You sort of wonder? It could all be bullshit."

I'd err on the side of bullshit. There are many reasons why the US embassy in Israel cables would not be in this dump, check out this post by former Guardian editor Brian Whittaker, he suggest a much simpler explanation http://www.al-bab.com/blog/blog1012a.htm#wikileaks_where_are_the_israel_documents

The Social Pathologist said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Social Pathologist said...

Alice

I'd err on the side of bullshit. There are many reasons why the US embassy in Israel cables would not be in this dump,

It's quite true that there could be many reasons why the Israeli cables were not included.

Whittaker's explanation is something that I had considered prior to posting my article. It is quite possible that there is a separate Israeli channel of information which wasn't tapped, but I find it hard to believe. The two countries that are probably America's biggest strategic rivals are China and Russia. I find it hard to believe that a country with second order importance has a higher priority channel of communication rather than the main strategic rivals.

The cable's were apparently intercepted "en-route" or so we are led to believe. (Personally, I think given their "quality" the source of the cables is not Manning but someone in the State department)

I would normally dismiss most "Israeli plots" as tinfoil, but what really surprised me is Israel's lack of condemnation of wikileaks. I mean Google it yourself. Everyone other official government has condemned it. I think this is really strange. After all, the U.S. is Israel's biggest supporter and you would think that publishing a few words in support of your ally (even if you didn't believe in it) would cost nothing.

Perhaps the Israelis are really a people who think things should be out in the open. Then there is this. Obviously what's good for the goose is not good for the gander.

What's odd is the mutual back slapping between Benny and Julian. For the record, I'd think it odd if Vladimir Putin and Julian were praising each other. This isn't an anti-Jewish thing. Don't you think it strange that someone who is looking to challenge the establishment is supporting someone who is? And vice versa?

There may be other legitimate explanations, but for the moment this is my working hypothesis. If further data could be presented which invalidates my theory I'm quite happy to accept it.

Anonymous Protestant said...

My two centimes:

First, Assange is an anti-American leftist who wishes to diminish American power as much as possible by the damage that can be done via Wikileaks. There are plenty of the "class of '68" willing to bankroll such an effort in various ways, so he can clearly make money in this effort. His motivations seem quite obvious in this regard.

Second, apply Occam's razor to the meeting with the Israelis. The simplest explanation is this: Assange was told what has happened in the past to people who caused serious harm to Israel, such as the 1972 Munich attackers, the PLO leaders meeting in Tunis later on, and so forth. Those people all died violently, killed either by Mossad assassins, or by IDF commandoes. Perhaps a few photos or videos of successful "wet" operations were showed to him to make the point crystal clear. It was also pointed out to him that in each case, a storm of criticism of varying size welled up from the UN and other parts of the world, but Israel did not care, and the target was still dead anyway. So they demonstrated to him that Israel has the means and the will to kill those people who could cause great harm to the nation.

Perhaps it was observed that the only surviving Munich murderer is still alive because he lives under virtual house arrest in a tinpot Arab dictatorship, and that Assange likely would not regard that as "living", ergo it is not really an option for him.

Thus, having obtained his agreement to be a good boy, there is no reason not to be his pal, because he also has information that can be used to embarrass Arab regimes that are enemies of Israel -- so he can be useful to Mossad.

People forget how ruthless the Israelis can be when they have reason. This is by no means unique to the Jewish state, obviously, I merely point it out as a simple, logical explanation for some of Assange's behavior.