As I’ve done for more than twelve 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 to early February, in print or as e-book

UPDATE: Here’s the Friday edition of this blog.

8:50  PayPal has announced, after wide publcity and protest,  on its company blog that it has lifted its "temporary" block on the Courage to Resist fund backing Bradley Manning.  See explanation here.

8:45  New op-ed at NYT claims "peak oil panic" caused by that Saudi cable recently is nothing, people in field knew about the guy’s claims for long time, and etc.  "More important, his claims don’t stand up to scrutiny."

6:55 Tweet from @WikiFugasPT   "Portuguese newspaper Expresso got 772 cables from Lisbon (from Politiken). Will start publishing on Saturday."
 
6:20  Here’s full transcript of that chat Assange did at Swedish paper today…Julian in the lion’s den…

6:10  Special one-day sale of e-book for my The Age of WIkiLeaks just ended here but still low-cost at $4.99.  It works for Kindle, Blackberry, iPhone, Android, iPad, web reading, more. It has been hailed by Dan Ellsberg, Glenn Greenwald, more. Print edition here.

5:05  Wired:  Pay Pal denies anything political about it freezing that Bradley Manning support fund.  "Asked why, if the Courage to Resist account was opened in 2006, PayPal hadn’t raised the issue of linking it to a bank account earlier, Nayar did not have an immediate response. He said only that nonprofit organizations are allowed to open accounts easily and quickly."

4:00 I’m told by my a source in Sweden that the country’s largest paper will be hosting live chat with Assange in just a few minutes.  Here is link.

3:45  David Leigh of The Guardian, who has turned on Assange quite bitterly (and the favor has been returned) with new column lecturing Assange on his post-ruling behavior today.   "The climax of almost a quarter of an hour of oration came when he complained of ‘this ridiculous time I have to spend on this nonsense!’. Such was his dismissive reaction to a reasoned 28-page ruling by the district judge, Howard Riddle, who no doubt burned some midnight oil composing findings he knows will be scrutinised carefully by an appeal court."  At least Leigh declared that Assange’s work had been "hugely important."

3:30  We covered it early this morning, now Yahoo! on to Pay Pal cutting off a support Bradley Manning group.

1:40 Important piece by Michael Scherer at Time responds to Matt Drudge’s siren call that Qaddafi considered Obama “a friend.” Scherer deeply explores State Dept cables on this before concluding that anything positive Qaddafi said was “ploy” in attempt to meet Obama and maybe get weapons from us. “It appears to have been a public relations ploy, an attempt by the self-described ‘king of kings’ to associate himself with the popular American president. According to secret State Department cables, it did not describe a friendship that actually existed.”

1:30 Al Jazeera English linked to this video as example of Qaddafi party mentioned in cables. (h/t KEvin Gosztola)

11:10 Glenn Greenwald on Democracy Now! on Assange extradition ruling, latest on Bradley Manning and Glenn being targeted in the HBGary scandal. “Not particularly surprising,” he says of ruling. “Will be appealed multiple times, so will be quite awhile before resolution.” A “lot of oddities” in how Swedish authorities handled. What’s “quite disturbing” is aspect of Swedish law that sex case hearings will be “secret,” like a “Star Chamber.” Claims “so few people in American media willing to defend WikiLeaks.”

10:10 Full extradition ruling.

9:50 Oh, dear: Assange’s mum says ruling amounts to political and legal “gang rape.”

9:15 Assange reaction as summarized by tweets at Channel 4: “Assange: It was a rubber-stamping process…. it comes as no surprise but it is nonetheless wrong.” Also: “It is false that I have said the CIA & Pentagon were involved in initial allegations, I have never stated that.” And: “I have never been a fugitive, so why is my bail £200k?” Finally: “I call on all those people in Sweden that have seen evidence of abuse of process to step forward, to not be scared…. Let the bravest journalists speak” about abuses.

9:10 A key section of today’s court ruling: Sweden must also get OK from UK before allowing Assange extradition to US.

9:00 Norway daily Aftenposten with new cables on US keeping Al Jazeera photog Sami al-Hajj in Sudan after release from Gitmo. My source there translates and summarizes thusly: “Claimed that the only journalist held at Gitmo ‘requires extreme caution and attention on behalf of the Sudanese authorities because he poses a much higher risk than the previously returned detainees.’ Al-Hajj was arrested by Pakistani intelligence in border areas towards Afghanistan in December 2001, and later transferred to the Americans who labeled him as an ‘enemy combatant.’ Amnesty Int’l criticize the US for handing over freed Gitmo prisoners to known torturists in Sudan, Libya and Yemen.”

8:35 State Dept. spokesman PJ Crowley weighs in via Twitter (with hash tags, no less): “The #JulianAssange rape case is a matter between #Britain and #Sweden. Notwithstanding claims to the contrary, the U.S. is not involved.”

8:20 Judge grants bail to Assange on same terms as previous. Appeals to high court, to be heard next week.

8:15 Pay Pal freezes account of Bradley Manning Support Network. “We’ve been in discussions with PayPal for weeks, and by their own admission there’s no legal obligation for them to close down our account,” noted Loraine Reitman of the Bradley Manning Support Network (Support Network). “This was an internal policy decision by PayPal.”

8:05 @EstherAddley of Guardian tweeting latest from court, as Assange fights for bail (again).

7:40 Assange loses extradition ruling in London today, must face charges in Sweden—but appeals. If loses that, could face extradition in ten days. He will be “detained in custody” because no system of bail in these matters in Sweden. “In his summary the judge also accused Assange’s Swedish lawyer, Björn Hurtig, of making a deliberate attempt to mislead the court. He added that Assange had clearly attempted to avoid the Swedish justice system before he left the country, saying ‘It would be a reasonable assumption from the facts that Mr Assange was deliberately avoiding interrogation before he left Sweden.’ ”

7:25 The Telegraph with useful timeline of Assange sex case developments over past seven months.

12:00 Assange ruling coming at 10 am Thursday, UK time. As noted earlier, Assange team expects it to go against them, but will appeal, and that will last months. Hackers threaten to go after Brit and Swedish gov’t sites… Australian officials complain US “frustratingly slow” to brief them on what was to come in WikiLeaks cables.

From late Tuesday

I linked to the live tweeting of this event earlier but here is wrapup plus the tweeting at WL Central: editors from the five news outlets involved in the first stage of Cablegate (inc. NYT and Guardian) debate it. Bill Keller continues his WikiLeaks-changed-nothing charade.

From Independent in London: Nations prepare for “hacklash”—that would be hacking protest—as judge’s ruling on Assange extradition arrives tomorrow morning 10 am (UK time). Assange lawyers “expect the worst.” Anonymous “has called on supporters to flood British government websites with distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, a relatively simple method of shutting down a website by flooding it with requests for information.”

No photos of Mariah “Cash And” Carey singing for Qaddafi’s son in 2009 but at left there’s one of Beyonce doing same the following year (along with Usher).

Chronicle of Higher Education on yet another derivative: UniLeaks. “WikiLeaks, scourge of governments worldwide, now has a copycat for academe. And the new group is itching to publish your university’s deepest secrets.”

Still awaiting word on judge’s ruling re: Assange extradition. But as we note way down below today: If he loses, as many expect, appeal will likely delay outcome for another nine months maybe. UPDATE: I’m now told that decision will come down at 10:30 am tomorrow, UK time.

Reuters gets new cables on Libya pressing oil companies to pay its huge $1.5 billion fee related to settling terrorist claims. “The cable suggests Gaddafi intended foreign oil companies to provide full funding for the scheme, which at the time was a key factor in improving ties between Libya and the United States.”

Jeremy Bernstein at NY Review of Books with a valuable look back at episode revealed, then largely forgotten, in one of the early cables via WikiLeaks in December: Qaddafi, with screw loose, and a specific and dramatic incident involving “loose nukes.” And by the way: despite his much-publicized promise to give up nuclear weapons programs, “there remained and still remains a nuclear research program centered in Tajura, about ten miles east of Tripoli.”