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Old 12-16-2010, 03:17 AM   #321
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bit of a worrying article... normally the US Espionage Act could not be used against Assange as he is not a US citizen - i don't know how it could be used to target WikiLeaks as wouldn't the "offence" have had to have been committed on US soil? unless they prosecute the New York Times for publishing the information... (aside from Manning, obviously...)

surely this should be a huge concern for all US citizens whether they agree with wikileaks or not, no??


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A sad day for the US if the Espionage Act is used against WikiLeaks

Resurrecting the 1917 law would be a mistake: it has a history of being used to suppress dissent

Stephen M Kohn
guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 15 December 2010 17.08 GMT

Numerous US officials are calling for a resurrection of the US Espionage Act as a tool for prosecuting WikiLeaks. The dusting-off of the old law is all but certain. But the outcome of the constitutional dust-up that is sure to follow will result in triumph or tragedy for the US bill of rights.

In 1917, in the midst of a war hysteria, the United States passed the Espionage Act. The law has nothing to do with prosecuting spies. From its inception, it had everything to do with suppressing dissent. The Great War was unpopular with many Americans, very like today's engagements in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Make no mistake about it. The Espionage Act targeted political dissidents. Senator Kenneth McKellar of Tennessee offered a simple defence of the law when it was introduced to Congress: "If we cannot reason with men to be loyal, it is high time we forced them to be loyal." Others, such as Congressman William Green of Iowa, were more blunt. His statement resembled modern calls supporting the execution of the suspected WikiLeaks "whistleblower" Bradley Manning: "For the extermination of these pernicious vermin no measures can be too severe."

The Espionage Act wreaked havoc on the American political left, destroying the young American Socialist party and one of its most progressive unions, the Industrial Workers of the World. Many others, including intellectuals, journalists, film producers and pacifist religious figures were also prosecuted. Prison terms were long, and some political prisoners died in federal jails. The abuses under the law were legendary, and mark a sad day in US history.

Why is the threat to prosecute WikiLeaks under the Espionage Act so potentially destructive? The law is not restricted to properly prohibiting the release of classified information. The law is not restricted to protecting legitimate government secrets. The law broadly prohibits any publication by anyone (newspapers included) of information related to national security, which may cause an "injury to the United States".

Who determines whether national security is actually at stake? Who determines what constitutes an "injury to the United States"? In 1917 the courts bent over backwards to permit the justice department to indict and prosecute thousands of dissidents. Loyalty to America meant nothing. The first amendment's protections for freedom of speech were mocked. Opposition to US war policies dictated who was jailed.

There are responsible mechanisms policing truly abusive leaks. The Espionage Act is not such a tool.

The attorney general should stop trying to resurrect the Espionage Act, and instead dust off his copy of the US constitution. If he has any question as to the meaning of the first amendment, he should read James Madison's 1789 speech, in which he introduced the bill of rights in the first Congress of the United States: "Freedom of the press, as one of the great bulwarks of liberty, shall be inviolable."
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Old 12-16-2010, 04:30 AM   #322
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espionage? oh jesus christ.

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"If we cannot reason with men to be loyal, it is high time we forced them to be loyal."
i know this isn't something someone said now, but as the article points out this is certainly the gist of what people are saying. i have to be honest, shit like this scares the crap out of me way more than anything another country could throw at us.

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The attorney general should stop trying to resurrect the Espionage Act, and instead dust off his copy of the US constitution. If he has any question as to the meaning of the first amendment, he should read James Madison's 1789 speech, in which he introduced the bill of rights in the first Congress of the United States: "Freedom of the press, as one of the great bulwarks of liberty, shall be inviolable."
exactly.
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Old 12-16-2010, 04:42 AM   #323
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something a little bit more light-hearted to keep some perspective...

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8.56am: So far UN general secretary Ban Ki-moon hasn't said much about the diplomatic cables, even though they revealed that US diplomats were ordered to spy on him.

Cables showed that diplomats were asked to gather biometric details on key UN officials.

Last night Ban made light of the issue by mildly teasing the US at the annual UN Correspondents' Association dinner.

AFP reports:

Ban started his speech, to an audience that included US ambassador Susan Rice, by flashing details such as "credit card number" "shoe size" and "ring finger 7.5" onto the screen.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:04 AM   #324
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Ok, so you can CONFIRM for us that not a single person's life was endangered by the illegal leaking of classified US documents?
That is irrelevant and I have to confirm nothing. The only point is, Wikileaks is not senselessly, without any regard whatsoever, endangering lives for the sake of publishing.
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Old 12-16-2010, 07:36 AM   #325
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I would also say that anyone who considers sex with someone while they're sleeping to be in any way consensual sex is seriously f'ed up.
Not really familiar with his charges or the facts of the case - so this has nothing to do with him - but I don't necessarily think this to be 100% true. Only because I can see the situation where an established couple who, say, lives together or is married, could be in a situation where one person wakes up earlier and starts to have sex with the other. I think it's a grey area (can you have prior consent? ongoing consent?), but I don't necessarily think that in that situation either party would consider it to be rape.

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Old 12-16-2010, 08:14 AM   #326
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the British high court has just upheld the decision to grant Assange bail...

WikiLeaks latest and bail appeal against Julian Assange: live updates | News | guardian.co.uk
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Old 12-16-2010, 10:35 AM   #327
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finally, some common sense.
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Old 12-16-2010, 11:26 AM   #328
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you do realise the US is not the only target of the leaks?
Of course. You do realise the United States is providing more than 90% of the forces and money in two major wars effect the security of the entire planet and the leaks involve classified information regarding these two wars. Can you name a country that had private or classified material leaked regarding a MORE SENSITIVE MATTER?
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Old 12-16-2010, 11:33 AM   #329
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That is irrelevant and I have to confirm nothing. The only point is, Wikileaks is not senselessly, without any regard whatsoever, endangering lives for the sake of publishing.
So the fact that someone's life was endangered by the leaks of this material is "irrelevant"?

Wikileaks is taking private or classified information about wars and publishing it. That in of itself is senseless and wrong.

I seriously doubt that the majority of the military and civilian members of the coalition in Afghanistan are pleased that Wikileaks is making classified information available to Al Quada and the Taliban. The leaks certainly don't benefit the coalition and provide Al Quada and the Taliban information that they may not of found elsewhere.
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Old 12-16-2010, 11:36 AM   #330
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Originally Posted by KhanadaRhodes View Post
espionage? oh jesus christ.


i know this isn't something someone said now, but as the article points out this is certainly the gist of what people are saying. i have to be honest, shit like this scares the crap out of me way more than anything another country could throw at us.


exactly.
Do you consider stealing someone's private information "freedom of the press"?
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Old 12-16-2010, 11:39 AM   #331
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i don't know how accurate those details are, as there is a lot of misinformation being bandied around the web, but it was apparently classed as "consensual sex" on the basis of the Swedish allegations... the case was also thrown out by a Swedish prosecutor several months ago as well... it just seems weird to me that it has suddenly been conveniently reopened...

wikileaks and alleged rape are two different issues altogether - it is possible to condone one and not the other...
Seems weird to me how some will dismiss certain criminal behavior because the person represents their Robin Hood against the "evil USA".
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Old 12-16-2010, 11:48 AM   #332
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Like say .... Michael Moore? He's taking some heat for some comments he made on MSNBC the other day.
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Old 12-16-2010, 11:58 AM   #333
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Originally Posted by adam4bono View Post
Do you consider stealing someone's private information "freedom of the press"?
Would you prefer if reporters never uncovered Watergate?

Not everything that is secret deserves to be so.
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Old 12-16-2010, 01:01 PM   #334
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Originally Posted by adam4bono View Post
So the fact that someone's life was endangered by the leaks of this material is "irrelevant"?

Wikileaks is taking private or classified information about wars and publishing it. That in of itself is senseless and wrong.

I seriously doubt that the majority of the military and civilian members of the coalition in Afghanistan are pleased that Wikileaks is making classified information available to Al Quada and the Taliban. The leaks certainly don't benefit the coalition and provide Al Quada and the Taliban information that they may not of found elsewhere.
Your question to me was irrelevant. First, it's not on me to confirm anything or not, second you ignore the context. My statement was, for the third time, that the accusation of wikileaks, and Assange more specifically, have no regard for the lives of people is false due to the fact that they are taking steps to prevent potentially dangerous information from being released. If indeed it happens that these steps prove not sufficient, then that is certainly of relevance, and would be reason for wikileaks, as well as the media involved, to overthink their policies of publication.
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Old 12-16-2010, 01:06 PM   #335
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Originally Posted by adam4bono View Post
So the fact that someone's life was endangered by the leaks of this material is "irrelevant"?

Wikileaks is taking private or classified information about wars and publishing it. That in of itself is senseless and wrong.

I seriously doubt that the majority of the military and civilian members of the coalition in Afghanistan are pleased that Wikileaks is making classified information available to Al Quada and the Taliban. The leaks certainly don't benefit the coalition and provide Al Quada and the Taliban information that they may not of found elsewhere.
3.4 million US Citizens had access to this material, it's hardly super top secret. If anyone had wanted to get access to it really badly, they'd have been able to find someone unscrupulous enough to give them it. In fact I'd imagine most of other countries intelligence forces already knew everything that's been posted. If anything the main crux of this whole story, is the complete and utter lack of information security in the US federal and military communication.

If Wikileaks point was to put the US military in danger then I doubt they'd have redacted as much has they have.
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Old 12-16-2010, 03:50 PM   #336
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Seems weird to me how some will dismiss certain criminal behavior because the person represents their Robin Hood against the "evil USA".
read my lips: i said "it is possible to condone one [i.e. Wikileaks] and not the other [i.e. alleged rape]"

(but fwiw, i still think it's a nasty smear campaign)

and, please don't try to put words in my mouth... the issues at stake here are much bigger than being "anti" a specific country...
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:20 PM   #337
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Originally Posted by adam4bono View Post
Of course. You do realise the United States is providing more than 90% of the forces and money in two major wars effect the security of the entire planet and the leaks involve classified information regarding these two wars. Can you name a country that had private or classified material leaked regarding a MORE SENSITIVE MATTER?
the united states should be funding those wars. they were entirely bush administration led.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:52 PM   #338
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Exactly, coolian.

If the government's that concerned about that information being leaked then maybe they should've beefed up their security surrounding it better, eh? Besides, given the "reasoning" surrounding allowing these wars to happen in the first place, Iraq especially, perhaps some of it should be exposed. Especially since the wars aren't really doing a whole hell of a lot to make the world more secure.

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Like say .... Michael Moore? He's taking some heat for some comments he made on MSNBC the other day.
What'd he say?

Angela
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Old 12-16-2010, 07:43 PM   #339
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It's more about the ongoing misrepresentation in the media of the accusers' claims, and being dismissive of the women making the claims. Maybe that's not the type of thing that adam4bono was talking about, but it's what sprung to my mind because I had just read about it.

Here's a link to a site discussing it, with a link to also watch the video of Moore on Assange.

Michael Moore Calls Assange Rape Case "Hooey"

On Moore's website, he says: "Please -- never, ever believe the "official story." "

http://michaelmoore.com/words/mike-f...ing-bail-money

So ... what? Never, ever believe the women who are accusing Assange of rape? Great.

I don't know if Assange is guilty. But there's no need to belittle the women making the accusations or be dismissive of them. But I suppose the topic of rape culture and rape apologists is an entirely different topic for an entirely different thread.

Anyway. I know most people in here are more interested in talking about WikiLeaks rather than the accusations, so I'll shut up. (For now. )
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Old 12-16-2010, 07:45 PM   #340
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The many hair-dos of Julian Assange | Stuff.co.nz

god bless the internet media.
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