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The WIKILEAKS NEWS & VIEWS BLOG for Thursday, Day 82 | The Nation

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Greg Mitchell

Greg Mitchell

Media, politics and culture.

The WIKILEAKS NEWS & VIEWS BLOG for Thursday, Day 82

As I’ve done for more than 11 weeks, I will be updating news and views on all things WikiLeaks all day, with new items added at the top. All times are ET in USA. You can contact me at epic1934@aol.com, Read about or order my new book, The Age of WikiLeaks, just updated, in print or as e-book.

UPDATE: Go to Friday's editiion of this blog here.

9:35  @WikiLeaks tweets:  "New important cables from Eastern Europe, Russia, EU, Indonesia, Turkey http://wikileaks.ch/reldate/2011-02-18_0.html ."

7:00  Barrett Brown at The Guardian on the Anonymous hackery of HBGary and all of the surprising fallout since.   He was misled by Aaron Barr.

4:40  Telegraph with new cables showing Hillary Clinton wanted derogatory info on KIng of Bahrain's sons.

4:30  Matthew Dowd, the former Bush aide who turned to criticizing him -- and, two months ago, backing WikiLeaks -- has a new piece at National Journal further explaining his belief in "candor."

3:30  The estimable Andy Greenberg at Forbes on how Anonymous hackery could end up hurting WikiLeaks.   "But if Anonymous has won a battle against those who want WikiLeaks destroyed, it might not have helped WikiLeaks in its other fight: the one for hearts and minds. Simply having Anonymous on its side may be contaminating WikiLeaks’ reputation at a moment when it most needs legitimacy."

3:20  Special one-day sale on my Age of Wikileaks book, just $10.95 in print and $4.99 e-book.

3:15  Another nation heard from: The Guardian on Uganda cables.   Death of a human rights activist, homophobia, more.

3:10  Major piece for Foreign Policy by Rebecca MacKinnon  "Internet Freedom" in the Age of Assange  "From Egyptian Facebookers to WikiLeaks to China's Great Firewall, the State Department's efforts to promote an open global Internet just got a lot more complicated."  And how.   

2:20  Law firm at center of HBGary and related anti-WikiLeaks dirty tricks now faces bar action, and we don't mean the drinking kind."

1:15  We've written for days about Alan Dershowitz joining Team Assange for the U.S. vs. Twitter case and possibly other cases, but here's the ouch headline on an Icelandic news outlet account:  "O.J. Simpson and Mike Tyson Lawyer Joins Icelandic MP." 

12:55  Re: that NYT scoop today on Obama ordering secret study of unrest in Middle East last year, @WLLegal tweets:  "Will the govt officials who talked about the contents of this classified report w/ NYT be arrested & held in solitary? http://nyti.ms/hQ5tdC ." 

12:45  Business Insider out with what it calls the real story behind those new cables on China (see below).

11:10  Cables reveal concerns about human rights abuses leading up to 2016 Olympics in Rio.

10:35  Breaking news on new cables re: China obtained by Reuters, showing China's reaction to U.S. financial meltdown -- and perhaps troubling request to Geithner for a "favor."  More: "The concern in certain influential Washington and Wall Street circles is that Beijing would leverage its position as the main enabler of U.S. overspending. And the cables provide a glimpse into how much politics inform relations between the world's two largest economies."

9:55  As Al Green would say, "Take Me To the WL River." 

9:25  Jake Tapper at ABC reviews WikiLeaks cables on Bahrain and how they show "cozy" relationship between gov't there and USA. " King Hamad was given high marks for ushering in governmental reforms. Ereli [U.S. ambassador]  sad King Hamad had 'overseen the development of strong institutions with the restoration of parliament, the formation of a legal political opposition, and a dynamic press.'  King Hamad, Ereli said, 'is committed to fighting corruption and prefers doing business with American firms because they are transparent.'  Ereli noted that King Hamad had awarded U.S. companies major contracts, including Gulf Air buying 24 Boeing 787 Dreamliners."

9:20  Panel of security experts, and Wired editor, at big RSA convention in San Fran, agree that  Assange's big contribution is that he has made leaking "sexy" and allegedly always a good thing.

8:45  The Norwegian paper Aftenposten, which has been publishing cables for weeks now, debuts a "word cloud" interactive feature, covering 200,000 cables from 1966 to 2010.  You can change the year, and also search specific embassies.

8:10  Great report on cables out of FInland on U.S. pressure to get that gov't to donate 100,000 old rifles to Afghanistan, illegally, by claiming they were not for military zone but for "police." 

8:05  Jemima, Surrender:  Latest @Wikileaks tweet misspells name of prime Assange backer, socialite Jemima Khan, as '"Jemina Kahn." 

7:55  WL Central looks at what the cables show about "reform" in Libya -- and latest on protestors shot from helicopters.  Also updates on protests in Iraq and three dead there, as the site keeps expanding coverage beyond WIkiLeaks to current actions.

7:50  Der Spiegel looks at the new crackdown on and search for Anonymous members.

7:40 "Anonymous" op-ed for Al Jazeera.

12:00 Many new WikiLeaks cables on Egypt released.... Noam Chomsky to be Democracy Now this morning, probably some Wikileaks queries... Last chance, if you are a media person, to get free e-book version of my The Age of WikiLeaks, drop me a request at address above.

From late Wednesday

Cryptome proclaims the end of the WikILeaks "mini-era" and the arrival of the Age of Anonymous.  "The digitization of vast archives of government, commercial and non-governmental organizations to facilitate their hegemony provides a bounty to be hacked repeatedly despite attempts to prevent it by vainly inept cybersecurity agencies and firms.The cyber-racket cartel will yell, hit the Internet Switch. Too late, too late. Anonymous controls the switch." 

EFF reviews new range of WikiLeak-like operations and ponders if the rise of WikiLeaks inspirations will reduce chances of "whistleblower censorship."

My favorite hacked HBGary e-mail yet -- Blackwater's Prince a 'hero' yet commies at Politico nixed Greg H's web comment. 

The infamous Yes Men in Huff Post piece tackle the leak that has got the U.S. Chamber of Commerce squirming. "Dirty tricks aren’t new, so why have they only now hit the corporate mainstream? And why might the most cashed-up big-business lobby in the world, with a daily budget nearing $400,000, be interested in these kinds of tactics, when they can just buy much of the media, not to mention a good chunk of Congress?"

Marcy Wheeler at FDL on interesting email that emerged in Anonymous hackery of HBGary -- related to players in the Manning - Lamo saga.

3:15  Okay, another paper now has the Stephen Breyer quote today on Assange:  "Appearing at a joint gathering of the Forum Club of the Palm Beaches and the Palm Beach County Bar Association, Breyer took a question from a high school student who asked about the legality of whistleblowing as seen on WikiLeaks.   'Usually what's at stake is the First Amendment. The First Amendment protects expression, it doesn't protect all expression,' Breyer said. 'The cases are all over the place.'

"The justice said disclosing the specifics of a secret weapon would not be permissible, just as shouting 'Fire!' in a crowded theater isn't. But he gave no inkling to his stance on Assange's publishing of a massive cache of confidential U.S. military and diplomatic documents and whether that was legal.  'The best thing I can say is, It depends,' Breyer said. 'What a terrible answer.'"

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