Adrian Lamo is a Colombian-American threat analyst and "grey hat" hacker. He first gained media attention for breaking into several high-profile computer networks, including those of The New York Times, Yahoo!, and Microsoft, culminating in his 2003 arrest. In 2010, Lamo became embroiled in the WikiLeaks scandal involving Bradley Manning, who was arrested after Lamo reported to federal authorities that Manning had leaked hundreds of thousands of sensitive U.S. government documents.
Lamo was born in Boston, Massachusetts to Mario Lamo-Jiménez and Mary Lamo-Atwood in 1981. He spent his early childhood in Arlington, Virginia, until moving to Bogotá, Colombia around the age of 10. When his family moved back to the United States two years later, they settled in San Francisco, where Lamo lived until he tested out of high school a year early. Popularly called the "homeless hacker" for his transient lifestyle, Lamo spent most of his travels couch-surfing, squatting in abandoned buildings and traveling to Internet cafes, libraries and universities to investigate networks, and sometimes exploiting security holes. Despite performing authorized and unauthorized vulnerability assessments for several large, high-profile entities, Lamo refused to accept payment for his services.
In the mid-1990s, Lamo became a volunteer for the gay and lesbian media firm PlanetOut.com. In 1998, Lamo was appointed to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Questioning Youth Task Force by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.
During this period, in 2001, he overdosed on prescription amphetamines.
In a 2004 interview with Wired, an ex-girlfriend of Lamo's described him as "very controlling," stating, "He carried a stun gun, which he used on me." According to the same article, a court issued a restraining order against Lamo. Lamo disputed the accuracy of the article and wrote, "I have never been subject to a restraining order in my life".
Lamo claimed in a Wired article that in May 2010, after reporting his backpack stolen, an investigating officer noted unusual behavior and detained him. He was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome after having been placed on a 72-hour involuntary psychiatric hold, which was extended to a total of nine days. The police report contradicts Lamo's version of events and states that Lamo was hospitalised as a result of his father calling Sacramento County Sheriff's department three times with concerns that he was over-medicating on his prescription drugs. The Wired article received a subsequent clarification.
As of March 2011, he is in hiding, stating that his "life was under threat" after turning in Bradley Manning.
Lamo first became known for operating AOL watchdog site Inside-AOL.com.
In February 2002 he broke into the internal computer network of The New York Times, adding his name to the internal database of expert sources, and using the paper's LexisNexis account to conduct research on high-profile subjects. The New York Times filed a complaint, and a warrant for Lamo's arrest was issued in August 2003 following a 15 month investigation by federal prosecutors in New York. At 10:15 AM on September 9, after spending a few days in hiding, he surrendered to the US Marshals in Sacramento, California. He re-surrendered to the FBI in New York City on September 11, and pled guilty to one felony count of computer crimes against Microsoft, LexisNexis and The New York Times on January 8, 2004.
Later in 2004, Lamo was sentenced to six months detention at his parents' home plus two years probation, and was ordered to pay roughly $65,000 in restitution. He was convicted of compromising security at The New York Times and Microsoft, Yahoo! and MCI WorldCom.
When challenged for a response to allegations that he was glamorizing crime for the sake of publicity, his response was "Anything I could say about my person or my actions would only cheapen what they have to say for themselves". When approached for comment during his criminal case, Lamo frustrated reporters with non sequiturs such as "Faith manages", (probably a reference to science fiction television show Babylon 5) and "It's a beautiful day."
At his sentencing, Lamo expressed remorse for harm he had caused through his intrusions, with the court record quoting him as adding "I want to answer for what I have done and do better with my life."
On May 9, 2006, while 18 months into a two year probation sentence, Adrian Lamo refused to give the United States government a blood sample, one that they had demanded in order to record his DNA in their CODIS system. According to his attorney, Adrian Lamo has a religious objection to giving blood, but is willing to give his DNA in another form. On June 15, 2007, lawyers for Lamo filed a motion citing the Book of Genesis as one basis for Lamo's religious opposition to the giving of blood.
On June 21, 2007, it was reported that Lamo's legal counsel had reached a settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice granting Lamo's original request. According to Kevin Poulsen's blog, "the Justice Department formally settled the case, filing a joint stipulation along with Lamo's federal public defender dropping the demand for blood, and accepting cheek swabs instead." Reached for comment, Lamo reportedly affirmed to Poulsen his intention to "comply vigorously" with the order.
In February 2009, a partial list of the anonymous donors to the WikiLeaks not-for-profit website was leaked and published on the WikiLeaks website. Some media sources indicated at the time that hacker Adrian Lamo was among the donors on the list. Wired reported that Adrian Lamo commented on his Twitter page, "Thanks WikiLeaks, for leaking your donor list... That's dedication."
In May 2010, Adrian Lamo reported to U.S. Army authorities that Specialist Bradley Manning had claimed to have leaked a large body of classified documents, including 260,000 classified United States diplomatic cables. Lamo stated that Manning also "took credit for leaking" the controversial, classified video footage of the July 12, 2007 Baghdad airstrike, which has since come to be known as the "Collateral Murder" video.
Lamo has stated that he would not have turned Manning in "if lives weren’t in danger... [Manning] was in a war zone and basically trying to vacuum up as much classified information as he could, and just throwing it up into the air." WikiLeaks responded by denouncing Lamo and Wired Magazine reporter Kevin Poulsen as "notorious felons, informers & manipulators" and said that "journalists should take care."
According to Andy Greenberg of Forbes, Adrian Lamo may have worked as a "security specialist" with Project Vigilant, a private security institution that works with the FBI and the NSA. Chet Uber, the head of Project Vigilant, has claimed, "I’m the one who called the U.S. government... All the people who say that Adrian is a narc, he did a patriotic thing. He sees all kinds of hacks, and he was seriously worried about people dying."
Lamo has been criticized by fellow hackers such as at those at the Hackers on Planet Earth conference in 2010, who called him a "snitch". Another commented to Lamo following his speech during a panel discussion saying: "From my perspective, I see what you have done as treason."
Julian Assange calls Adrian Lamo "a very disreputable character", and says that Lamo's monetary support for WikiLeaks amounted to only 20 U.S. dollars on one occasion. Assange says that it is "not right to call [Lamo] a contributor to WikiLeaks", and questions the electronic record associated with the Manning-Lamo chats, because, according to Assange, Lamo has "strange motivations" and "had been in a mental hospital three weeks beforehand".
Lamo's role in the Manning case drew the ire of Glenn Greenwald, of Salon Magazine. An ardent supporter of WikiLeaks, Greenwald has been a passionate critic of Lamo, suggesting that Lamo lied to Manning by turning him in, and also lied after the fact to cover up the circumstances of Manning's confessions. Greenwald places the incident in the context of what he calls "the Obama administration's unprecedented war on whistle-blowers". Greenwald's critique of Wired Magazine has drawn a response from that magazine which suggests that Greenwald is writing disingenuously: "At his most reasonable, Greenwald impugns our motives, attacks the character of our staff and carefully selects his facts and sources to misrepresent the truth and generate outrage in his readership." In an article about the Bradley Manning case, Greenwald mentions Wired reporter Kevin Poulsen's 1994 felony conviction for computer hacking, suggesting that "over the years, Poulsen has served more or less as Lamo's personal media voice." Greenwald is skeptical of an earlier story written by Poulsen about Lamo's institutionalization on psychiatric grounds, writing: "Lamo claimed he was diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome, a somewhat fashionable autism diagnosis which many stars in the computer world have also claimed." In his response, Poulsen accused Greenwald of "name-calling, bizarre conspiracy theories and ad hominem attacks".
Greenwald called for Wired to release more of the chat logs in its possession that pertain to a conversation between Bradley Manning and Adrian Lamo: "there are clearly relevant parts of those chats which Wired continues to conceal". Wired's editor-in-chief reiterated that "the logs include sensitive personal information with no bearing on WikiLeaks, and it would serve no purpose to publish them at this time." In an article entitled "The Worsening Journalistic Disgrace at Wired", Greenwald claimed that Wired was "actively conceal[ing] from the public, for months on end, the key evidence in a political story that has generated headlines around the world."
On July 13, 2011, Wired published the logs in full, stating that "The most significant of the unpublished details have now been publicly established with sufficient authority that we no longer believe any purpose is served by withholding the logs." Greenwald wrote of the newly-released logs that they validated his claim that Wired had concealed important evidence: "In sum, the full chat logs — in particular the parts Wired concealed for over a year — prove that Adrian Lamo is a serial liar whose claims are inherently unreliable." The Guardian wrote of the Wired-Greenwald dispute, "An early view of the logs suggests that Wired's defence stands up — much of the new material relates to Manning's sexuality and other personal matters."
Lamo was removed from a segment of NBC Nightly News when, after being asked to demonstrate his skills for the camera, he gained access to NBC's internal network. NBC was concerned that they broke the law by taping Lamo while he (possibly) broke the law. Lamo was a guest on The Screen Savers five times beginning in 2002.
Hackers Wanted, a documentary film focusing on Lamo's life as a hacker, was produced by Trigger Street Productions, and narrated by Kevin Spacey. Focusing on the 2003 hacking scene, the film features interviews with Kevin Rose and Steve Wozniak. The film has not been conventionally released. In May 2009, a video purporting to be a trailer for Hackers Wanted was allegedly leaked to or by Internet film site Eye Crave. In May 2010, an earlier cut of the film was leaked on Bittorrent. According to an insider, what was leaked on the Internet was a very different film from the newer version which includes additional footage. On June 12, 2010, a director's cut version of the film was also leaked onto torrent sites.
Adrian Lamo says jail for WikiLeaks suspect would be a 'lasting regret' but stands by decision to give information to authorities
Adrian Lamo, the hacker who betrayed the alleged WikiLeaks source Bradley Manning to the US authorities, has said it would be to his "lasting regret" were the soldier to be given a lengthy custodial sentence.
Lamo, 30, dubbed the "world's most hated hacker" for his role in passing information on Manning to military intelligence after the soldier befriended him on internet chat, said that he understood that Manning was an idealistic young man who believed he could change the world for the better and "who didn't necessarily know what he was doing.
"I think about him every day. The decision was not one I decided to make, but was thrust upon me."
Lamo's comments come on the eve of the opening of a pre-trial hearing in the prosecution of Manning, who is charged with multiple counts of transferring state secrets to WikiLeaks including hundreds of thousands of US embassy cables. The hearing starts in Fort Meade, Maryland, on Friday amid exceptionally tight security.
Bradley Manning supporters hoping for an expression of remorse from Lamo ahead of the soldier's prosecution will be disappointed, however. Despite the note of regret at a possible harsh sentence for Manning – the soldier faces a maximum punishment of life in custody with no chance of parole – Lamo said he continued to be convinced that he had done the necessary thing.
"Had I done nothing, I would always have been left wondering whether the hundreds of thousands of documents that had been leaked to unknown third parties would end up costing lives, either directly or indirectly," he said.
A soldier alleged to be Bradley Manning contacted Lamo on AOL instant messaging on 21 May 2010, using the internet handle Bradass87. Lamo was known to the soldier because of his celebrity status in the hacking world having been prosecuted in 2003 for breaking into the computer network of the New York Times, for which Lamo was put on six months' house arrest.
In the course of their internet chat, later published by Wired, the soldier asked Lamo: "if you had free reign [sic] over classified networks for long periods of time, things that belonged in the public domain, what would you do?" The soldier confessed to Lamo that he had been downloading US state secrets on to a CD labelled "Lady Gaga".
Lamo took advice from two friends who had experience working with military intelligence, and, with their assistance, he passed the details of the internet conversation to the US military. On 26 May, Manning was arrested on duty at the Forward Operating Base Hammer outside Baghdad, where he was working as an intelligence officer.
For his action, Lamo was denounced by fellow hackers as a "snitch" and a traitor to the community, and was booed at the Hackers On Planet Earth conference in Manhattan in July 2010. Lamo said he also had to move home to avoid any opprobrium affecting those close to him.
But he said he was unflustered by the adverse reaction. "I'm not a politician running for re-election. I don't need to be popular among the hacker community, and I most likely will never be liked in the hacker community."
Lamo said he was taken aback by the enormous fallout from his approach to the military authorities. "At the time I was not even certain that this was newsworthy. I suppose that demonstrates a certain degree of naivety on my part."
He had thought hard, he said, about Manning's position. "I remembered what it was like to be Manning's age – 22 – that was the age that I was arrested for what I regarded as crimes of conscience. I deliberated on whether I wanted to subject someone of that age to the same process that I went through."
In the end though, he concluded that "Mr Manning's wellbeing was not as important as the security of our armed forces. I had never considered myself particularly patriotic, but when push came to shove the wellbeing of the nation was of paramount importance to me."
He said he suffered "a great deal of internal conflict" about Manning's situation when he was being held at the Quantico marine base in Virginia. The soldier was held in solitary confinement and stripped naked every night in conditions that some likened to torture.
Manning, 23, is now being held under a much more liberal regime at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas.
Lamo declined to speculate about what an appropriate sentence would be for Manning were he found guilty of the WikiLeaks charges. However, a hypothetical individual who had engaged in passing state secrets to a third party would merit a sentence of "25 to 50 years", he said.
"This is different to a James Bond film. WikiLeaks was involved in an overall weakening of strategic operations and diplomacy that will take decades to recover from," he said.
But Lamo added that he was aware of the lasting harm that he has caused. "There are times in life when you are faced with a variety of choices, none of which you consider right. All of them harm someone and you have to choose the one that harms the fewest number of people. That still leaves you harming someone, and, because of that, I think of Manning on a daily basis."
Adrian Lamo, left, walks with a soldier into a courthouse in Fort Meade, Maryland, on Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011, for a military hearing that will determine if Army Pfc. Bradley Manning should face court-martial for his alleged role in the WikiLeaks classified leaks case. Manning's online correspondent was Adrian Lamo, a former hacker, who gave the chat logs to authorities, leading to Manning's arrest in May 2010. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
Accused WikiLeaker Bradley Manning sat in the same room with the man who undid his life on Tuesday, when former hacker Adrian Lamo took the stand on the fifth day of Manning’s pretrial hearing.
Lamo, who turned Bradley Manning into the FBI and Army for allegedly leaking hundreds of thousands of sensitive government documents to WikiLeaks, denied in his testimony that he’d violated a journalistic or ministerial promise of confidentiality when he turned over the chat logs that led to Manning’s arrest.
The 30-year-old ex-hacker said he’d decided just a day after first chatting over instant messenger with Manning, who used the handle “bradass87″ in their online chats, to report the Army intelligence analyst. Lamo said he did so because what was being confessed was so “egregious” that it required action.
Lamo, who’s been affiliated with the hacker ‘zine 2600, said that he considered himself a reporter, and that he was a minister with the Universal Life Church, which grants ministerial credentials over the internet. On cross-examination, Manning’s attorney David Coombs — who refused to refer to bradass87 in the chats as Manning — asked Lamo about the section of the logs where Lamo offered bradass87 confidentiality as a journalist and a man of the cloth.
(10:22:24 AM) bradass87: uhm, trying to keep a low profile for now though, just a warning(10:23:34 AM) email@example.com: I’m a journalist and a minister. You can pick either, and treat this as a confession or an interview (never to be published) & enjoy a modicum of legal protection.(10:24:07 AM) bradass87: assange level?(10:25:12 AM) bradass87: or are you socially engineering ;P(10:25:51 AM) firstname.lastname@example.org: You must not have done your research (10:25:57 AM) email@example.com: I could have flipped for the FBI.
(10:22:24 AM) bradass87: uhm, trying to keep a low profile for now though, just a warning
(10:23:34 AM) firstname.lastname@example.org: I’m a journalist and a minister. You can pick either, and treat this as a confession or an interview (never to be published) & enjoy a modicum of legal protection.
(10:24:07 AM) bradass87: assange level?
(10:25:12 AM) bradass87: or are you socially engineering ;P
(10:25:51 AM) email@example.com: You must not have done your research
(10:25:57 AM) firstname.lastname@example.org: I could have flipped for the FBI.
Lamo responded that in their chat, Manning “neither declined nor accepted,” his offer of source protection.
Lamo, who acknowledged in the hearing to being diagnosed with Asperger’s Disorder, used formal diction and circuitous language in his responses, in stark contrast to the sharp, definitive “yes” and “no” answers given by witnesses in the previous four days of testimony. He remained unperturbed throughout the hearing, however, even when things heated up between him and Coombs.
Coombs pressed Lamo further, asking why Lamo told “bradass87″ in their chat that “none of this is for print,” when he’d already given logs of their initial chats to law enforcement agents, and would later go on to give all of the chat logs to the government and to Wired.com.
“It was not for print by me,” Lamo said, eliciting a snicker from the gallery.
“So you thought Wired magazine wouldn’t print it?” Coombs asked.
Lamo, who was convicted in 2004 for hacking Microsoft and the New York Times, responded that he gave the chats to Wired.com before he met with law enforcement agents a second time because he was “uncertain” if they would arrest him.
“I was uncertain I would be coming back,” he said.
Coombs’ cross-examination of Lamo sought to portray the former hacker as a duplicitous confidential informant who was trying to get Manning to incriminate himself.
Coombs asked Lamo if he was acting as a minister, and then repeatedly asked, “Don’t you think he was contacting you for moral support?” At that point, Manning looked off into the short distance, perhaps recalling the state of confusion and despair that prompted him at the time to reach out to Lamo.
Coombs and Lamo went back and forth over whether Lamo violated his responsibility as a “minister” to keep Manning’s confessions private. Coombs asked Lamo whether it wasn’t clear that bradass87 intended their chat to be confidential.
“A reasonable person would conclude that,” Lamo conceded.
Throughout Lamo’s testimony, Manning continued taking notes and occassionally leaning forward, looking at Lamo.
Manning, dressed in fatigues and black-rim Army-issue glasses that he continually pushed back into place on the bridge of his nose, showed only a single moment of brief animation during the afternoon’s testimony by his former online confidante, after Lamo was handed a copy of the chat logs — dozens of pages long — and was asked if he recognized them. Lamo took several minutes to thumb through and look at each page while everyone in the courtroom waited, prompting Manning to lean back slightly at one point and turn a palm up as if in an expression of wonderment.
Asked when he first contacted law enforcement, Lamo said on May 21 he contacted Timothy Douglas Webster, a psychology student at UC Santa Barbara and a former Army counterintelligence agent. In cross-examination by Coombs, it was established that Lamo contacted Webster because he wanted Webster to help him find the “right team for the job” who would handle the matter in a sensitive manner. That request eventually led to the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division.
Lamo, who has a history of psychological disorders and drug abuse, said he wasn’t on drugs and was feeling “more normal than usual” when he recorded the chats and turned them over to law enforcement.
Earlier in the day, Special Agent Antonio Patrick Edwards, who works for the Army’s Computer Crime Investigation Unit, testified that he got the chats from Lamo after receiving an e-mail from Chet Uber, a civilian who worked with Lamo as part of a cyber security initiative. The e-mail alerted Edwards that Uber was “aware of a person in contact with an intelligence analyst who was releasing information to an Australian national in connection with WikiLeaks.”
Edwards first spoke with Lamo in late May, but didn’t actually take possession of Lamo’s computer until June 11 when he met with Lamo in California to collect his netbook and a hard drive from another computer.
Asked if Lamo worked as a confidential informant for law enforcement, Edwards said that Lamo was not working for law enforcement at the time of his chats with Manning in May, but became a confidential informant for the Army starting in July 2010, and remained one until about three or four months ago. Lamo was not a paid informant, Edwards said, but the government did pay his expenses for travel and other costs associated with his research on its behalf and also purchased a hard drive to replace the one taken into evidence by the Army.
The month that Lamo became an official informant, he contacted a Manning acquaintance named Danny Clark, and engaged him in a chat session that Lamo subsequently turned over to law enforcement. Edwards testified that in June he had tried to speak with Clark to interview him, but Clark declined to talk, invoking his right to an attorney.
Lamo insisted that when he contacted Clark shortly thereafter on July 21, he wasn’t doing so with any intent to hand over information he obtained to law enforcement.
“I was curious regarding his role in the WikiLeaks affair,” Lamo said.
He admitted to being suspicious that someone, perhaps Clark, had helped Manning install encryption on his laptop. In chatting with Clark, Lamo wrote, “Let’s just agree neither of us is going to share these [chat logs] with anyone else.” But Lamo did indeed hand over the chats to agents. He told Coombs that he felt a “necessity that overrode the implied agreement” with Clark.
DoD Compares 9/11 Attack and WikiLeaks-Manning
Classified Information Plays Central Role in Both 9/11, WikiLeaks Cases
By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service
FORT MEADE, Md., Oct. 18, 2012 – Pretrial hearings for two major court cases – one involving the alleged perpetrators behind the 9/11 terror attacks and the other involving the soldier charged with the largest intelligence leak in U.S. history – are converging this week as attorneys operating in two very different legal systems focus on the issue of classified information in the courtroom.
The pre-trial hearing for Khalid Sheik Mohammed, who has confessed to planning the 9/11 attacks “from A to Z,” and four others who allegedly trained, financed or arranged transportation for the 19 hijackers entered its fourth day today at Naval Air Station Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Mohammed’s codefendants in the case are his nephew, Ali Abdul Aziz Ali; Walid Muhammad Salih Mubarak bin Attash, charged with selecting and training some of the hijackers; and Ramzi Binalshibh and Mustafa Ahmed Adam al Hawsawi, accused with helping finance the attacks.
Meanwhile, here at Fort Meade, the second day of pre-trial hearings continued for Army Pfc. Bradley Manning. He is an Army intelligence specialist accused of downloading and transmitting classified information to the whistle-blowing group WikiLeaks while he was deployed to Iraq.
The legal systems being used to prosecute these cases are significantly different.
Manning, as a member of the U.S. military, is subject to the Uniformed Code of Military Justice. This system has roots dating back to the Revolutionary War, and is intended to promote good order and discipline in the armed forces. The 9/11 defendants, on the other hand, will be tried through a military tribunal governed by the Military Commissions Act of 2009.
Manning is charged with aiding the enemy; wrongfully causing intelligence to be published on the Internet, knowing that it is accessible to the enemy; theft of public property or records; transmitting defense information; and fraud and related activity in connection with computers. The charges against him also include violation of Army Regulations 25-2 “Information Assurance” and 380-5 “Department of the Army Information Security Program.”
If found guilty, Manning could receive up to life in prison. He also could be reduced to E-1, the lowest enlisted grade, and face a total forfeiture of all pay and allowances and dishonorable discharge.
Military commissions, on the other hand, apply to “an alien unprivileged enemy belligerent who has engaged in hostilities, or who has purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the United States, its coalition partners or was a part of al Qaeda.”
The 9/11 defendants were captured in Pakistan between 2002 and 2003 and have been confined at Guantanamo Bay since 2006.
They were charged during their arraignment in May with terrorism, conspiracy, attacking civilians, attacking civilian objects, intentionally causing serious bodily injury, murder in violation of the law of war, destruction of property in violation of the law of war, hijacking or hazarding a vessel or aircraft. If found guilty, they could receive the death penalty.
A casual peek into the courtrooms gives a glimpse into one of the most obvious differences between the UCMJ and military commission processes.
By law, Manning is not required to attend proceedings regarding his case, but a military lawyer with more than 20 years experience said on background that he’s never seen a service member not attend. Photographers outside the courtroom yesterday captured images of Manning being escorted from the courtroom in his Army dress blue uniform with gold-colored private first class rank on his sleeves.
Army Col. James Pohl, the judge presiding over the 9/11 case, ruled earlier this week that the defendants don’t have to attend their court sessions, as long as they sign a waiver form each morning they choose to skip. When they do elect to attend, they can dress as they choose – as long as their attire doesn’t include U.S. military uniform items or prisoner garb in a color that would misrepresent their security status at the detention facility.
Mohammed quickly took advantage of both rulings. He opted out of court the first day after Pohl ruled that he could – the day the judge also took up the wardrobe issue. Yesterday, Mohammed initially elected not to attend the third day of pre-trial hearings, then showed up later that morning wearing a camouflage vest over his traditional white tunic.
Most of the distinctions between the UCMJ and military commission legal processes are less obvious to those without legal training, and the discussion could fill textbooks. One big question being debated during the 9/11 hearings, for example, is whether the defendants have constitutional rights.
However, a central concern in both the Manning and 9/11 cases is the issue of how classified information is dealt with in court.
Today, the fourth day of pretrial hearings for the 9/11 suspects continued to focus on the balance between protecting classified information that, if made public, could jeopardize U.S. national security, and the constitutional mandate that court proceedings be open to the public.
The prosecution and U.S. government lawyers say protections are needed to prosecute the case without disclosing classified information that would threaten U.S. national security.
In contrast, the defendant’s defense teams accused prosecutors of using an overly broad banner of national security to safeguard information vital to providing a solid defense. Echoing them were lawyers representing the American Civil Liberties Union and media groups, who said the government wants to squelch information the public deserves to know.
Pohl is expected to rule this week on a protective order the prosecution has requested to spell out what provisions are protected and which ones aren’t.
A central issue in both the 9/11 and Manning cases involves information regarding the defendants’ detention. For Manning, that involves time when he was allegedly mistreated while being held in a Marine Corps brig at Quantico, Va. Of primary concern regarding the 9/11 defendants is time they spent in the hands of the CIA before being transferred to Guantanamo Bay.
Both cases also require hammering out details about witnesses who can be called. In Manning’s case, for example, some witnesses’ names have been redacted from the motion and are considered to be classified as secret. At Guantanamo Bay, the issue involves whether the defense is required to give the prosecution a heads up about what testimony the witnesses it calls are likely to provide –something the government would weigh in deciding whether to fly a witness to the court.
Meanwhile, Army Col. Denise Lind, the judge hearing he Manning case, ordered the prosecution yesterday to release hundreds of emails about his incarceration to the defense team. Lind’s ruling covered all but 12 of about 600 emails regarding a range of issues: from Manning’s visitor list and provisions to ensure he had proper uniforms to plans for responding to protesters and media queries. These emails, added to ones already in the possession of Manning’s defense attorneys, bring to 1,200 the total number of emails that will presumably be used to argue that their client was treated illegally.
Lind also issued rulings that would allow parts of CIA, FBI and Department of Homeland Security documents used in the case to be redacted.
Ironically, the only concrete decision made during the 9/11 hearing today had nothing to do with the court proceedings. Rather, it involved the cleanup of administrative space the defense teams have complained are plagued with rat droppings and mold. Although base officials had declared them safe, a defense lawyer told Pohl the space is making her staff sick.
A Navy officer promised a comprehensive cleanup before the next series of pre-trial hearings, assuring the court that occupational health experts will verify that they they’re up to standards.
More event details: https://www.facebook.com/events/445608622147199/?ref=ts&fref=ts
Journalists and activists to hold Bradley Manning teach-in and rally in Bryant Park
What: discussion of Bradley Manning’s case and its implications
When: Friday, October 26, 2012, 4 PM ET
Where: Bryant Park, New York, NY
On Friday, October 26, 2012, activists, journalists and concerned citizens will gather in Bryant Park, NY, for a teach-in and rally for accused WikiLeaks whistle-blower PFC Bradley Manning. Journalist Alexa O’Brien, who has reported on Manning case independently since its inception; Chase Madar, author of The Passion of Bradley Manning; and Stanley Cohen, legal representative for the 14 activists accused of attacking PayPal online, will speak at the event.
They’ll discuss Bradley Manning’s latest legal updates, the implications of a government-wide persecution of whistle-blowers and journalists, how activists can support PFC Manning and WikiLeaks, and more. The teach-in will culminate with a rally to the New York Times’ building a few blocks west, to raise public awareness of Bradley Manning, WikiLeaks, and the efforts to silence them.
Bradley Manning has been imprisoned for two and a half years awaiting trial, where he faces a potential life sentence for “indirectly aiding the enemy,” for allegedly releasing hundreds of thousands of documents exposing crimes and abuse in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and in diplomacy worldwide. His court-martial trial is scheduled to start February 4, 2013.
Bradley Manning Support Network
ADVISORY FOR 2:00 PM EDT October 22, 2012
Contact: Kevin Limiti, 516-474-4761
Or email press[at]bradleymanning.org
January 8, 2012 in Department of Defense
This script produced by the military for the Article 32 hearing of PFC Bradley Manning was released as part of a public court filing and was first reported on by Politico.
PFC Manning, I am Lieutenant Colonel Paul Almanza. By order of Colonel Carl R. Coffinan, Jr., I have been appointed as investigating officer under the provisions of Article 32(b) of the Uniform Code of Military Justice to conduct an investigation into the charges which have been preferred against you.Before proceeding, I would like to advise the participants and persons observing that this is a formal investigation. In order to protect the dignity and decorum of these proceedings, I would ask that all present refrain from interrupting or otherwise disturbing the investigation. Should any person nevertheless engage in speech or conduct that interferes with the dignity and decorum of the proceedings, they may be removed from this courtroom.PFC Manning, let the record show that Mr. David Coombs, civilian counsel, MAJ Matthew Kemkes, and Captain Paul Bouchard are here present with you. On 23 November 2011, I advised you of this investigation and your rights to counsel in this investigation. As you were in pretrial confinement, I provided that notification to your counsel.Counsel, when was your client provided with that notification?I have read the written documents provided to your counsel for the sole purpose of determining which witnesses and evidence would be necessary to conduct a thorough and impartial investigation. Your counsel have examined those documents. I will not consider those documents for any other purpose, and I will make my findings, conclusions and recommendations based only on the evidence presented during the course of this investigation. After I have heard the evidence presented by both the government and your defense counsel and arguments by the government and the defense counsel, I will forward the results of this investigation and my recommendations to the appointing authority. Do you have a copy of the charge sheet in front of you?…
PFC Manning, I am Lieutenant Colonel Paul Almanza. By order of Colonel Carl R. Coffinan, Jr., I have been appointed as investigating officer under the provisions of Article 32(b) of the Uniform Code of Military Justice to conduct an investigation into the charges which have been preferred against you.
Before proceeding, I would like to advise the participants and persons observing that this is a formal investigation. In order to protect the dignity and decorum of these proceedings, I would ask that all present refrain from interrupting or otherwise disturbing the investigation. Should any person nevertheless engage in speech or conduct that interferes with the dignity and decorum of the proceedings, they may be removed from this courtroom.
PFC Manning, let the record show that Mr. David Coombs, civilian counsel, MAJ Matthew Kemkes, and Captain Paul Bouchard are here present with you. On 23 November 2011, I advised you of this investigation and your rights to counsel in this investigation. As you were in pretrial confinement, I provided that notification to your counsel.
Counsel, when was your client provided with that notification?
I have read the written documents provided to your counsel for the sole purpose of determining which witnesses and evidence would be necessary to conduct a thorough and impartial investigation. Your counsel have examined those documents. I will not consider those documents for any other purpose, and I will make my findings, conclusions and recommendations based only on the evidence presented during the course of this investigation. After I have heard the evidence presented by both the government and your defense counsel and arguments by the government and the defense counsel, I will forward the results of this investigation and my recommendations to the appointing authority. Do you have a copy of the charge sheet in front of you?
Tags: Bradley Manning, Secrecy, Wikileaks 1 Comment »
Curt Hopkins more articles | email
The latest hearing for detained soldier, Bradley Manning, ended Thursday at Ft. Meade, Md.
Manning was arrested in May 2010 for allegedly releasing classified materials containing military and diplomatic secrets. The charge of “aiding the enemy” is a capital crime, though prosecutors have said they will not seek the death penalty.
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The released materials were believed to be the basis of the Wikileaks Iraq War Logs and Afghanistan War Diary and contained video of U.S. air attacks on a group that contained two Reuters correspondents.
During this latest hearing, which ran from Aug. 28 through Aug. 30, military judge Denise Lind set the date for Manning’s trial. It will take place from Feb. 4 to through March 15, 2013.
Lind ruled that the court would take judicial notice of the Authorized Use of Military Force legal code, establishing that Al Qaeda is an enemy of the United States.
She also granted the defense motion that the court take judicial notice of David Finke’s book, The Good Soldiers, which the defense maintains contains an exact transcription of the Baghdad attack video and was published in September 2009—in advance of Manning’s alleged passing of the same information to WikiLeaks. If this were proven true, Manning could possibly be seen as neither culpable for making the secret information public nor for the information being “closely held.”
The judge would not, however, according to Kevin Gosztola’s live blog of the hearing, “allow the defense to argue that the content was a ‘verbatim transcript’ of the audio/video from ‘Collateral Murder.’ That was a legal theory or argument they needed to wait to make in court before a panel of jurors.”
The prosecution said Manning posted a YouTube video that contained language that violated Army codes, and the evidence of his subsequent “corrective training” was ruled admissible. Manning, the prosecution will certainly claim, had a proven history of knowing the rules and willfully breaking them.
The judge also scheduled a review of emails to which the defense has requested access.
Between his arrest in 2010 and April 2011, Manning was held at the Marine brig in Quantico, Va. He was held under “prevention of injury” status, allowing the brig’s administrators to keep him in solitary confinement, where they allegedly also took his clothes from him each night, kept him awake between 8pm and 5am (7am on weekends), forbade him from lying down on his bed at that time, and other actions that the defense considers pretrial punishment.
If the argument for illegal pretrial punishment is made successfully, the judge could release Manning from custody and even dismiss the charges against him.
The judge has already made about half of the almost 1,400 emails between Quantico personnel available. The defense seeks the rest. Review of that request will be made at a hearing on Nov. 27. Prior to that hearing, two other hearings will take place concerning whether Manning’s right to a speedy trial was violated.
As The Guardian’s Ed Pilkington notes, by the time the trial starts, Manning will have been in jail for three years, a custody 12 times longer than a defendant is entitled to under military guidelines.
Photo by Wikimedia
In 2012 a modest personal computer can easily store the text from a million books. Distributing that kind of volume of whistleblower data, and the analysis work of others, securely and anonymously, onto your desktop is the goal of ShofarLeaks. It is a framework for others to use while their identity remains unknown.
ShofarLeaks answers the need for whistleblower or leak sites to offer privacy in communications, an ability to vet the data, and the tools to build on the analysis of others.
The project is built on top of other projects to build a complete technical foundation for independent and autonomous sites.
The domain name system in ShofarDomain which provides true domain name ownership rather than domain name rental also ensures that sites once present cannot be taken down by a third party. It also provides the technology for servers that have gone down to reappear on the web without third party assistance.
ShofarPortfolio technology gives intense security for both data sources and data viewers. Even secondary monitoring, such as traffic analysis, is thwarted for ShofarPortfolio users. In keeping with the motto “We don’t know your stuff”, who is providing or viewing data remains completely cloaked.
This is meant to be an interesting insight into what the intelligence services (mainly STRATFOR along with their contacts in other agencies) are discussing on topics that are in the news. All information posted below is my own personal take on some of the interesting emails that were leaked to Wikileaks. The emails in question are from 2010 onwards and certain internal situations may have changed since.
Original emails will be referenced inside brackets ( )
Very brief description for parties discussed:
STRATFOR ~ Founded in 1996 by George Friedman who is the founder, chief intelligence officer, and CEO of the company which is located in Austin, Texas. (US) The companies vice president for Counterterrorism and Corporate Security is Fred Burton (arguably the most colourful of STRATFOR’s staff and the author of Chasing Shadows) who is considered “one of the world’s foremost experts on security, terrorists and terrorist organizations. STRATFOR is viewed as being ‘The Shadow CIA’ and is one of the most trusted sources for global intelligence gathering.
DHS ~ Formed on November 25th 2002 as a response to the 9/11 attacks that took place in New York on September 11th 2001. They employ over 240,000 staff and as of 2012 have an annual budget of US$60.4 billion. They are currently located at the Nebraska Avenue Complex in Washington DC, but put forward a $4.1 billion plan to Congress to consolidate its 60-plus Washington-area offices into a single headquarters complex at the St. Elizabeths Hospital campus in Anacostia, Southeast Washington, D.C. The earliest DHS would begin moving to St. Elizabeth’s is 2012. Janet Napolitano heads DHS as Secretary and is the fourth person to do so since its inception.
Wikileaks~ The site was first registered with GoDaddy on 4th October 2006 and is a not-for-profit media organisation whose goal is to try improve the transparency of world governments in order to create a better society for all people. Wikileaks is infamous for the publishing of many secret government documents and databases, allowing the public to know more about the world in which they live. Julian Assange is without a doubt the face of Wikileaks and is also generally recognised as the founder of the site. Mr Assange is also wanted for extradition to the States to face charges of making public classified government documents (US Diplomatic Cables) He is also wanted in Sweden to face questions involving the alleged rape and sexual assault, something that he hasn’t actually been charged for but is seen by most as a ploy by the US government to have Sweden extradite him to the US (being that the US still have the death penalty, this hopefully will not happen) who allegedly had a sealed indictment on Assange for a while now. Mr Assange has stated that he is willing to stand trial in Sweden as long as there are assurances that he won’t be extradited to the US. He is currently staying at the Ecuadorian embassy in London (UK) as the UK government are determined to extradite his to Sweden. The UK government has also issued a threat to Ecuador that they would invade the embassy in order to grab Assange. Wikileaks is credited with the disclosure of some very big leaks including documents on the Afghan War, classified documents on the Guantánamo Bay detention camp, US Diplomatic Cables (allegedly leaked by Bradley Manning) through to the biggest release in 2011 which consisted of just over 5 million emails from STRATFOR (Global Intelligence Files). The STRATFOR files were leaked to Wikileaks after LulzSec hacked STRATFOR on December 24th 2011. The attack was led by Sabu who was working for the FBI at the time of the attack as an informant. Being that Sabu was under a constant watch by the FBI with all computer activity being monitored 24/7, one has to assume that the FBI were fully aware of the attack.
Bradley Manning ~ Private First Class Bradley Manning is alleged to be the person to have leaked the US Diplomatic Cables to Wikileaks. The cables consisted of 250,000 diplomatic cables and 500,000 Army reports. The Army logs are better known as the Iraq War logs and Afghan War logs. So far Bradley Manning has been held for 817 days without trial (the legal limit is 120 days) and there are also very disturbing reports that he was mistreated during this time. In December 2010, the UN said that they were going to investigating a complaint on behalf of Bradley Manning that he is being mistreated. Manning has served with the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division since joining the service in 2007. There remains quite a bit of confusion/ suspicion as to just how someone of his rank was granted access to such documents in the first place.
STRATFOR on DHS Failings and inadequacies
If there is one thing that is fairly consistent in the STRATFOR emails, it is the overall negative feeling against the ability of the Department of Home Security (DHS) and their ability to perform the tasks on which they were formed. Being that STRATFOR are viewed by many as extremely reliable in their intelligence gathering and analytics, their views on the DHS are worrying. There seems to be the overall tone that the DHS are more governed by political agenda rather that what need to be done to prevent the threat of terrorism.
Via Fred Burton (3546952)
DHS is an absolute nightmare from my perspective. Totally irrelevant to the legacy agencies who continue their work unabated in the field. Meanwhile back at DHS HQ, it’s a constant turnover of politically connected wanna be insiders. Imagine the Agency or FBI, that turned over personnel at the highest levels of the organization every 18 mos to 2 years – that in and of itself is a formula for disaster, the legacy agencies issue notwithstanding. They are also looking to the state fusion centers they pour millions of $ into, to be their de facto field offices. The fusion centers are often tasked by DHS central planning with briefing the state and locals on “non-specific threats” (like the one we are looking at now), one step ahead of the FBI if possible. It is freaking amature hour.
Mr Burton also makes reference to Janet Napolitano’s hands being effectively tied by the White House regarding domestic threats, specifically the Ft. Hood shooting that took place on November 5th (1211585)
The White House told Nancy Pelosi not to allow the chairman of the Homeland Security Committee to hold hearings into the domestic plots and attacks, specifically the Ft. Hood shooting.The culprit is believed to be Holder.Holder sat on the request for the FBI to respond to Ft. Hood, which substantiates why it took them 3 days to mobilize.Motive – Politically, timing was bad for a Muslim terrorist attack on U.S. soil, however, the WH did not anticipate the follow on attacks (Detroit, Times Square) so now the WH’s arse is in a crack.Napolitano told a very good source that her hands have been tied. She’s been told at a cabinet meeting not to push the domestic threat issue.
The White House told Nancy Pelosi not to allow the chairman of the Homeland Security Committee to hold hearings into the domestic plots and attacks, specifically the Ft. Hood shooting.
The culprit is believed to be Holder.
Holder sat on the request for the FBI to respond to Ft. Hood, which substantiates why it took them 3 days to mobilize.
Motive – Politically, timing was bad for a Muslim terrorist attack on U.S. soil, however, the WH did not anticipate the follow on attacks (Detroit, Times Square) so now the WH’s arse is in a crack.
Napolitano told a very good source that her hands have been tied. She’s been told at a cabinet meeting not to push the domestic threat issue.
Another email sent to Fred Burton which was disclosed to analysts and tactical at STRATFOR shows the worrying inadequate leadership, lack of expertise, extreme politics and involvement of far too many outside contractors involved with DHS procedures. (385505)
** From a senior agent at DHS.—————————————————————————For your consumption only: it is a combination of inadequate leadership, lack of expertise, extreme politics and lousy procedures/equipment coupled with a forced rush to do something/anything yesterday, no matter how ineffective. Another issue is that DHS in general has too many contractors whose first interest is furthering their company’s interests, and many of these folks couldn’t find their bottoms with both hands and a mirror. Unfortunately, the few direct hire staff end up overwhelmed by their contractor majority staffs. Contractor footnote: have observed that the contractors are extremely adept at showing up at meetings in large numbers, eating the donuts and drinking the beverages without contributing anything more than body count. Director told me that he has difficulties with all of the academic types who have jumped onto the counterterrorism bandwagon. They do some things very well, no question, but many times they are untimely (ever look at UofM’s START terrorism database?) and don’t answer the “so what” question; sortta like ending up with everything you ever want to know about something that is irrelevant. Or, as we used to say: some of the national labs are marketing solutions for problems that we didn’t have = “so what.” Sounds jaundiced and there are surely some well-meaning TSA folks out there somewhere, but my assessment is that they are in the minority. Just wait until DHS moves 14,000 employees to the old St. Elizabeth Hospital site in SE Washington, and then maybe they will learn some real transportation security methodology.
** From a senior agent at DHS.
For your consumption only: it is a combination of inadequate leadership, lack of expertise, extreme politics and lousy procedures/equipment coupled with a forced rush to do something/anything yesterday, no matter how ineffective. Another issue is that DHS in general has too many contractors whose first interest is furthering their company’s interests, and many of these folks couldn’t find their bottoms with both hands and a mirror. Unfortunately, the few direct hire staff end up overwhelmed by their contractor majority staffs. Contractor footnote: have observed that the contractors are extremely adept at showing up at meetings in large numbers, eating the donuts and drinking the beverages without contributing anything more than body count. Director told me that he has difficulties with all of the academic types who have jumped onto the counterterrorism bandwagon. They do some things very well, no question, but many times they are untimely (ever look at UofM’s START terrorism database?) and don’t answer the “so what” question; sortta like ending up with everything you ever want to know about something that is irrelevant. Or, as we used to say: some of the national labs are marketing solutions for problems that we didn’t have = “so what.” Sounds jaundiced and there are surely some well-meaning TSA folks out there somewhere, but my assessment is that they are in the minority. Just wait until DHS moves 14,000 employees to the old St. Elizabeth Hospital site in SE Washington, and then maybe they will learn some real transportation security methodology.
Here is Mr Burton’s ‘Too many cooks’ response to Obama’s outlines steps to prevent terrorism (1100541)
Threat investigation is an art, but there is no single govt agency responsible. It depends upon the nature of the threat. So, the many cooks in the kitchen have to figure out who takes the lead in DC, but the originator of the threat reporting can run with the ball and direct his agent colleagues to take action in other posts. This was a very routine matter done 5-6 times a day, back on my watch. The inability to know who has the lead, provides the vacuum to be filled by those taking action in the field.For example, here are the various threats and the lead agencies to investigate:POTUS, VPOTUS – USSS SecState, Embassies – State/DSS Nuclear – FBI, CIA, DOE US Homeland – FBI, DHS Aviation – FBI, TSA, FAAClear as mudd, ain’t it?Which is why WE would take the lead on every terror threat and run with the ball back in the day.
Threat investigation is an art, but there is no single govt agency responsible. It depends upon the nature of the threat. So, the many cooks in the kitchen have to figure out who takes the lead in DC, but the originator of the threat reporting can run with the ball and direct his agent colleagues to take action in other posts. This was a very routine matter done 5-6 times a day, back on my watch. The inability to know who has the lead, provides the vacuum to be filled by those taking action in the field.
For example, here are the various threats and the lead agencies to investigate:
POTUS, VPOTUS – USSS SecState, Embassies – State/DSS Nuclear – FBI, CIA, DOE US Homeland – FBI, DHS Aviation – FBI, TSA, FAA
Clear as mudd, ain’t it?
Which is why WE would take the lead on every terror threat and run with the ball back in the day.
Fred Burton’s remarks on President Obama’s speech on the attempted terrorist attack on Christmas Day 2009 (1089652)
This is not a fixable problem.DHS is dysfunctional and broke. FBI doesn’t share information w/DHS.CIA has one foot in the grave. DIA is conspiring w/the FBI to bury the CIA.Foggy Bottom has always been broke.Meanwhile, NYPD is infiltrating aQ.
This is not a fixable problem.
DHS is dysfunctional and broke. FBI doesn’t share information w/DHS.
CIA has one foot in the grave. DIA is conspiring w/the FBI to bury the CIA.
Foggy Bottom has always been broke.
Meanwhile, NYPD is infiltrating aQ.
It is worrying when even well-known and experienced intelligence specialists have little faith in agencies like the DHS. The emails and remarks were made just over a year ago, but I seriously doubt that much has changed.
STRATFOR on Wikileaks
As to be expected there are a lot of emails regarding Wikileaks and its founder Julian Assange. The feelings towards Mr Assange are pretty hostile although at least one of the analysts admitted to voting for him in Time magazines Person of the Year for 2010. Assange won that year. (5521009)
i voted for assange. that makes me a tard. i thought the pic was great with the ladies in the back.
Fred Burton on the tools that are being used to take down Wikileaks and cut off their finance (1067796)
Take down the money. Go after his infrastructure. The tools we are using to nail and de-construct Wiki are the same tools used to dismantle and track aQ. Thank Cheney & 43. Big Brother owns his liberal terrorist arse.
Fred Burton on how to deal with Assange, his family and associates (1056763)
One other point is this. Ferreting out his confederates is also key. Find out what other disgruntled rogues inside the tent or outside. Pile on. Move him from country to country to face various charges for the next 25 years. But, seize everything he and his family own, to include every person linked to Wiki.
In February it transpired via a leaked STRATFOR email that there was a sealed indictment already in place for Mr Assange which if anything makes what Wikileaks is doing even more important, in that there is a real need for more transparency in government rather that more secrecy. (375123)
Not for Pub –We have a sealed indictment on Assange.Pls protect
Not for Pub –
We have a sealed indictment on Assange.
Fred Burton on US vice-president, Joe Biden’s comments stating that Julian Assange is a ”hi-tech terrorist” (1973411)
Opinions are like arseholes: Everyone has one and they all stink.Why may ask lad is the case being handled by FBI CT and not CI?Material witness warrant has already been made. Deaths have already occurred from what I’ve been told. Trying to find out where.————————————————–Like I had cited before, he can be prosecuted under the terrorism statutes. Wiki is a terrorist organization.
Opinions are like arseholes: Everyone has one and they all stink.
Why may ask lad is the case being handled by FBI CT and not CI?
Material witness warrant has already been made. Deaths have already occurred from what I’ve been told. Trying to find out where.
Like I had cited before, he can be prosecuted under the terrorism statutes. Wiki is a terrorist organization.
Fred Burton on a reply to one of the analysts thoughts on an article by The Age newspaper in May 2010. (1036081)
He needs to fall off a roof top.
Burton replying to a ‘Guide on the leaks’ thread (364817)
We probably asked the ASIS to monitor Wiki coms and email, after the soldier from Potomac was nabbed. So, its reasonable to assume we probably already know who has done it. The delay could be figuring out how to declassify and use the Aussie intel on Wiki. Wiki holding on to other docs is to protect their sources. The owner is a peacenik. He needs his head dunked in a full toilet bowl at Gitmo.
Fred Burton on Wikileaks founder (1040789)
The odd aspect in play here is the seated Grand Jury looking at inside the beltway leaks. DoJ is on a Nazi-like pursuit of leakers. I have it on very word that Obama himself is driving that train, in cahoots w/Holder. Wiki far surpasses anything some reporter from the NYT has done.
To which an analyst replies:
This means that the administration doesn’t buy the Bradley Manning story? That they think there has to have been someone more high up?
That last question by the analyst is something that most people believe, in that Manning is basically being played for the fall guy.
Those are a fraction of the emails regarding Julian Assange and Wikileaks, but it does draw a pretty conclusive picture in that should Assange actually be extradited to the US, he can fully expect to be found guilty even before any actual trial begins. This is why I believe that it is incredibly important for him not to be tried in the US, as he is already viewed as a terrorist by the security services and intelligent agencies. If the US gov are truly not going to leave this alone, which they obviously won’t, it would be fairer for him to be tried in a neutral country where at least his safety would be assured.
STRATFOR on Bradley Manning
As with Julian Assange and Wikileaks, there is also a lot of chatter regarding Bradley Manning. However, not all analysts seem to view Manning with the same hatred as they do Assange. There is a lot of discussion as to just how a young Private with next to zero field experience was able to access the US Diplomatic Cables and then allegedly pass them off to Wikileaks, (unproven) which would usually involve having security clearances well above what he had, but apart from an assumed/ possibly misinterpreted comment above (1040789) that is mainly it.
Fred Burton does however state that a very senior man at the FBI has said that there is no way the Manning will stand trial, but he should hopefully fry instead (386477)
From: “Fred Burton” To: “Analyst List” , “TACTICAL”Sent: Thursday, December 2, 2010 8:16:14 PM Subject: Manning & Wiki Founder Arrest/Prosecution?>From a very senior man @ the FBI — (not for attribution to the FBI pls)——————————————————————There is no way the administration wants to put him on trial. That would be a huge circus. Manning should fry and hopefully will
From: “Fred Burton” To: “Analyst List” , “TACTICAL”
Sent: Thursday, December 2, 2010 8:16:14 PM Subject: Manning & Wiki Founder Arrest/Prosecution?
>From a very senior man @ the FBI — (not for attribution to the FBI pls)
There is no way the administration wants to put him on trial. That would be a huge circus. Manning should fry and hopefully will
Please note that according to Mr Burton in his replying comment, ‘fry’ means to be severely punished in FBI speak. (same email)
Emre:We cannot source the comment specifically to the FBI, but can say a reliable Stratfor source reports…..Fry means pay severely for his actions in the intel lingo.I think Manning could get the death penalty. Depends if the DOD goes after him for espionage vice unauthorized disclosure.http://techfleece.com/2012/08/21/stratfor-on-dhs-failings-wikileaks-and-bradley-manning/
We cannot source the comment specifically to the FBI, but can say a reliable Stratfor source reports…..
Fry means pay severely for his actions in the intel lingo.
I think Manning could get the death penalty. Depends if the DOD goes after him for espionage vice unauthorized disclosure.
In January 2010, more than 130 people gathered to celebrate the opening of Room B-28, a “hacker space” in the basement of the computer science building at Boston University. The room had two rows of computers running open-source software, and, in conformity to the hacker ethic, its walls were painted with wildly colored murals, extensions of the free expression to be practiced there. That was the reason for the power tools, too — in case someone wanted to build something amazing and beautiful, such as the musical staircase, under construction now, that chimes when you step on it.
One of the visitors was a young Army specialist named Bradley Manning, on leave from duty in Iraq. He had been working with computers, modifying code, since he was a kid. David House, founder of the hacker space, said he immediately sensed that Manning “was in the community,” someone who understood how technology could be empowering. This was the sort of world Manning hoped to inhabit one day, friends said. He had joined the Army so the GI Bill would finance his education. He had his eye on a PhD in physics.
Days later, he would be on a plane back to Baghdad and a culture where rule-breaking was not celebrated. And eight months after that, House — who had chatted with the man for barely 15 minutes — went to visit him in the brig at the Quantico Marine Base in Virginia, where Manning was being held as the prime suspect inthe largest national security leak in U.S. history.
He is accused of violating military computer security and leaking classified information to the insurgent Web site WikiLeaks. He faces 22 charges, including “aiding the enemy,” a capital crime. The material includes a video of an Apache helicopter firing on civilians in Baghdad, daily field reports from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and a quarter-million cables from U.S. diplomats around the world. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has called the cable leaks “an attack on America’s foreign policy interests.”
For most of the past year, Manning spent 23 hours a day alone in a 6-by-12-foot jail cell. His case has become a rallying point for free-information activists, who say the leaked information belongs to the American people. They compare the 23-year-old former intelligence analyst to Daniel Ellsberg, leaker of the Vietnam War-era Pentagon Papers, and decry excessive government secrecy. “What is happening to our government when Bradley Manning is charged with aiding the enemy?” asked Pete Perry, an organizer with the Bradley Manning Support Network. “Who is the enemy? Information? The American people?”
The case raises troubling issues. Placing information in the public domain has never before been construed as aiding the enemy. Manning had a history of emotional outbursts throughout his youth, and they continued during his Army service, culminating in a breakdown in Baghdad.
How did a young man of such promise wind up in a brig? And how was he in a position to potentially access sensitive material given what the Army knew — or should have known — about him? Who is Bradley Manning, and what made him the way he is?
Manning’s path to jail began in a one-stoplight Oklahoma town so pious he liked to quip that it had “more pews than people.” There are a dozen churches in Crescent’s one square mile, and its pastures are dotted with oil derricks and bales of hay.
Manning’s parents — a young Navy veteran skilled in computer programming and his Welsh wife — moved to Oklahoma from California in 1983 with their 7-year-old daughter, Casey. Brian Manning had married Susan Fox the day after his 21st birthday in Wales, where he had been stationed.
The couple had tried for years to have another child, so Bradley’s arrival exactly 11 years after his sister’s was an occasion. His early years, spent in Arizona and Oklahoma, were happy ones. The girl was crazy for her little brother, bounced him on her knees as he “laughed and laughed.” His mother noticed that even as a 6-month-old, Bradley was fascinated by the computer. “He would sit with his father and just peck, peck, peck” at the keyboard, she said in an interview during a trip to see her son at Quantico.
The family lived in a neatly kept two-story house on five acres on an isolated dirt road several miles outside Crescent, where they had what Casey calls a “hobby farm.” There were two horses, a cow, pigs and chickens, a large vegetable garden and a pond stocked with perch. Susan was a homemaker and expert knitter who worked odd jobs but never learned to drive. She was a doting, even indulgent mother who let Bradley cover the entire second-story floor with his Lego creations.
Bradley was like a “hummingbird,” said his aunt, Debra Manning. “Always moving fast, taking a short rest, then back in motion again.” He’d talk just as quickly, his words tumbling over his thoughts.
When Bradley was no more than 7 or 8, Brian brought home a computer programming book and introduced his son to the C++ programming language. Much later, his dad helped him build a computer. “He loved anything electronic,” recalled a family friend, Mary Egelston.
His outstanding intellect was apparent early in school. He earned straight A’s and studied in advanced classes along with Jordan Davis, his oldest friend, now living in a suburb of Oklahoma City. Though Bradley played the sax and both boys were on a youth basketball team, Davis said, “he was a pretty big nerd, and so was I.”
“Extremely bright,” said one of his teachers, with a “vocabulary, a depth of knowledge that most fifth-graders didn’t have.” He won top prize in the science fair three years in a row.
Bradley was also a wisecracker who was not shy about expressing his opinions — even to teachers, whom he sometimes corrected. The other children would say, “Oh, Bradley, he always thinks he knows everything,” recalled Egelston, who used to be a substitute teacher. “Well, Bradley, little munchkin that he is, he would stand up for what he believes.”
Even in elementary school, Bradley showed an interest in the world. He would argue that the United States had a right to assert its military power overseas to protect its interests, Davis said. Former classmate Chera Moore admired his outspokenness. “He was just the most intelligent boy I’ve ever met,” she said.
In sixth grade, Bradley became the first student from Crescent to win a statewide academic meet. When he went on stage to collect his trophy in Oklahoma City, his parents were not there. Indeed, Brian and Susan Manning did not take an active interest in Bradley’s schooling or grades, even skipping parent-teacher conferences. “[Kids are] the ones that have to grow up,” Susan Manning said in explanation. “Nobody else is going to do it for you.”
Other parents looked out for him. When Bradley and his friend Paden Radford went to academic meets in other towns, Paden’s mother, Jacqueline Radford, said she “always made sure Paden had enough money to pay extra if Bradley didn’t have any. The teacher would sometimes pitch in. That’s what we do around here.” One summer, Bradley went on an East Coast school bus trip with Paden’s father acting as his chaperone. It was evident that Bradley was “trying to find out where he fit in the world,” Mark Radford said.
He did a lot of that searching on his own. Brian Manning, who worked in information technology for Hertz, took business trips to Europe for five or six weeks at a time, Susan recalled. “Come home on a Saturday, then sleep on Sunday, go back to work on Monday and leave on another trip on Friday,” she said.
The absences strained Bradley’s relationship with his father, family members said. And when Brian was home, he was, one relative said, “far too strict” — in contrast to a mother who was “far too soft.”
Bradley was “afraid of his dad,” Davis said. He recalled how Bradley once told him that “he had to hide out in a tree” or that “his dad was going at him with a belt.” Once, when Bradley was in the second grade or so, his father gave him a spanking so severe that the next day at school, he told his teacher he could not sit down, his mother and sister said. His father was also “abusive with words,” Susan Manning said.
(Brian Manning did not respond to requests for interviews.)
Bradley’s mother had drunk for years, but, she said, her habit grew worse in Crescent, where the family lived in relative isolation. She added vodka to her morning tea and rum to her afternoon Coke. “She just basically drank once she got up and till she went to bed,” Casey said. Susan said she was having problems in her marriage and turned to the bottle for solace. She admitted the drinking affected her children: “I wasn’t just hurting myself. I know that. But you don’t think that at the time. You get so down that you don’t care.”
The children learned early to be self-reliant. By age 6, Bradley could dress himself and get his own breakfast cereal. When Brian traveled, he would leave envelopes containing pre-written checks, and Casey would mail them. Her mother, she said, never learned how to write a check.
Bradley also began acting out. On a family trip to Florida when he was 9 or 10, one of his cousins touched his laptop, inadvertently clearing the screen. Angered, Bradley hurled an ironing board across the rented villa, recalled his aunt Sharon Staples. Moore, his former classmate, said that if someone crossed him, “he’d pick up a book or notebook and slam it on his desk, or his face would turn bright red.”
But on his computer, Bradley could transcend life in his small Midwestern town. “He was always thinking outside Crescent, Oklahoma,” Paden Radford said. “He was always a step ahead of most people.” By middle school, Bradley was altering lines of code to transform a computer-game character’s appearance, just for fun. “I don’t know too many 13-year-olds who can re-skin a model,” Davis said.
Playing computer games, Bradley discovered the world of ideas. The game Call to Power II, for instance, prompted him and Davis to discuss using technology to achieve democracy. It was during one of those discussions that Bradley mentioned the concept that “information wants to be free,” which had become a tenet of the hacker community. “Bradley was interested in hacking — not in doing it, but in theory,” Davis said.
Susan and Brian’s troubles escalated, and by the fall of 1999, Brian had moved out. The divorce in 2000, Egelston recalled, “rocked their world.” It was especially hard on young Bradley, who moved with his mother to a smaller, rented house in town. Casey was by now in college.
That same year, his father remarried, and the new wife’s son changed his name to Manning. One afternoon in 2001, Bradley came home devastated after a visit to his father, Susan Manning recalled. He felt replaced by his stepbrother, Dustin. Bradley began literally climbing the wall in frustration — taking two or three steps, running up the wall, then hopping off, over and over. She called Egelston and asked her to intercede. Egelston finally got him to his room and sat him down. He was “just totally frustrated,” Egelston recalled. He blurted out: “Nobody understands!” He confessed his sense of rejection to his mother. “I’m nobody now, Mom,” he said.
Bradley was now an adolescent, coming into his sexual awakening. The summer he was 13, he confided to Davis and another friend that he had a crush on a boy. “It was, I guess, me,” Davis said. “I was flattered. It was a little bit awkward.” Bradley came out to his mother, very matter-of-factly, at the dining room table about the same time. She remembers telling him it was “okay with me, but try not to tell other people — especially your dad.”
Bradley did not speak openly of the turmoil at home. Besides, big things were happening in the world, and even as a 13-year-old, he was keenly aware of current events. On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, Bradley and Jordan Davis saw the footage of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. “Oh, man, this is unbelievable,” Davis recalled them saying. The boys felt that they were alone in their class in seeing the “game-changing” nature of the attack. “This was going to be by far the biggest event of this decade and maybe the next, probably one of the biggest events of this new century.”
It was amid this turbulence that Manning’s mother decided to return to Wales, and in November, Bradley announced to surprised friends and teachers that he was leaving. They flew from Washington on Thanksgiving Day after spending a few nights in Potomac with Bradley’s Aunt Debbi, Brian’s older sister. Bradley, by now the man of the family, had made the airline reservations online himself.
They settled into a three-bedroom apartment in Haverfordwest, Wales, near his mother’s family. Though Bradley made a few friends, he spent a lot of time in his room playing games and listening to music on his computers.
Wales was not an easy fit. “All the things he knew — politically, culturally, all his comfort zone — were all of a sudden gone,” said his uncle Joseph Staples.
Kids picked on him. “Some days, he was relieved to get home from school,” said his aunt Sharon Staples. “He’d run. He never walked.” Once on a camping trip with friends, she said, “he woke up, and all the tents around him were gone. They left while he was sleeping.”
His mother’s drinking continued to be a concern to the boy, and he told relatives he was afraid she would die. When he graduated from high school in 2005, he returned to Oklahoma, where his father had offered to get him a job in technology.
Bradley moved in with Brian, his second wife (also named Susan) and her son, who was about Bradley’s age. They lived in a ranch-style house in Oklahoma City, where Bradley, now 17, began work at a software start-up, Zoto Inc.With its Macs, white boards and robots tooling around, Zoto appealed to Bradley’s tech sensibilities. The young man certainly had aptitude, recalled Zoto co-founder Kord Campbell. He was also politically switched-on, intelligent beyond his years. “Here I was a grown man, and he could run circles around me” talking about Iraq and Afghanistan, Campbell said.
Bradley showed a political consciousness about the Iraq war. “He didn’t like that people were being killed, particularly the citizens, innocent people,” Campbell said. “I remember us specifically talking about how we were having a hard time getting information on how many people were being killed.”
The youth confided in Campbell about his home life, expressing frustration with his mother — “ ‘I felt like I was the parent with her’ ” — and his stepmother — “ ‘My stepmom hates me.’ ” Campbell came to the conclusion that “nobody’s been taking care of this kid for a really long time.”
As they grew closer, Campbell began to notice worrisome incidents. There were moments when Bradley would just “sit there and stare,” he said. Once, when Campbell was teaching Bradley to drive, Bradley failed to brake as he approached a stop sign. When Campbell spoke up, Bradley stopped the car but then “just locked up,” Campbell said. “I had to put on the emergency brakes, get out, walk around the car, open the door and touch him before he finally snapped out of it.”
The odd behavior became more frequent, Campbell said, and he suspected drug use. Manning had trouble focusing on work, and it became increasingly difficult to communicate with him, Campbell said. Finally, he told Bradley he needed to deal with his problems and fired him. He was sorry, he said, but he had a business to run.
At home, Bradley and his stepmother fought over money, over his smoking, over his leaving empty Dr Pepper cans under his bed. In March 2006, the two got into such a row that Susan called 911, saying Bradley had threatened her with a knife. Her husband had fallen while trying to protect her, she told the dispatcher.
In the tape of the call, an angry Susan can be heard screaming at Brad: “Get away from him! You get away from him!” In the background, a concerned Bradley asks his father, “Are you okay?”
Susan told the dispatcher that Bradley was upset “because I have been telling him he needs to get a job, and he won’t get a job.”
In the audio, she lays down an ultimatum to his father: “You better find somewhere for him to go, because he ain’t staying here.” (In March of this year, Brian Manning filed for divorce.)
So Bradley took the old red Nissan pickup his dad had given him and hit the road.
In July 2006, Bradley’s aunt in Potomac received a call from her former sister-in-law in Wales. Bradley was in Chicago, broke and living out of his truck in someone’s driveway. Could Debbi help?
Debra Manning called Bradley on his cellphone and offered to wire him money. She also offered him a temporary place to stay. About 30 hours later, Bradley showed up at her house. He had driven almost 700 miles in one day.
Thus began a 15-month interlude in the Washington area that would be one of the most tranquil in Bradley’s life. He found a job at Abercrombie & Fitch, then a better one at Starbucks. With his uncle’s help, he enrolled in Montgomery College, in the hope that it might be a steppingstone to the University of Maryland. After one semester in which he failed an exam, he dropped out and never returned.
Still, he seemed productive and more or less happy. “He was extremely organized, extremely tidy,” his aunt said. “This was not somebody who was flailing around.” So she was stunned when, over dinner at the now-gone Broadway Diner in Rockville, Bradley announced that he had enlisted in the Army and would be leaving in a week or so. To her concerned questions, he replied that service would allow him to go to college.
Debra would later learn that it was her brother who encouraged Bradley to enlist because, he said, it would give structure to his son’s life. “Twisted his arm,” was how Brian Manning put it to a PBS “Frontline” correspondent.
In October 2007, Pvt. Manning reported for basic training at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri. “He really didn’t like a lot of the people,” said a friend in Washington. “They weren’t very nice to him.” At 5-foot-2, “he was the smallest guy in the group. There are two types of small guys: the guys, who, if you mess around with them, they break your arm. And then there are the type who just take it. And he just took it.”
Despite his struggles, Manning was excited about his future in Army intelligence, a field that suited his analytical mind. “It’s going to be a different crowd when I get through with basic,” he told the friend. “I’m going to be with people more like me.”
He enjoyed classes at the Fort Huachuca, Ariz., intelligence school, where he received a top-secret security clearance, graduated and joined the 2nd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, N.Y.
It was here, constrained by the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, that he began speaking out anonymously about gay rights. He attended a rally in Syracuse and noted on Facebook that he had gotten an “anonymous mention” in an article. The reporter wrote of a gay soldier who complained he was “living a double life. ... I can’t make a statement. I can’t be caught in an act.”
Manning now had a love interest: Tyler Watkins, a freshman interested in neuroscience at Brandeis University who was an active member of Triskelion, the Brandeis club for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students. Manning began to make weekend visits to Watkins’s dorm at the tranquil, wooded campus west of Boston. On his Facebook page, Watkins declared that he was “totally in love with Bradley Edward Manning!!!!!!!”
The trips to Boston exposed Manning to new friends and a vibrant tech community. A friend named Danny Clark introduced him to Pika House, a rambling, cooperative-style clapboard house near the Massachusetts Institute of Technology whose residents — mostly students — practiced creative chaos: tacking circuit boards to the ceiling, hanging a traffic signal upside down from the porch.
Clark, who runs a small software firm, provided a sympathetic ear to Manning’s Army and family woes. “He always seemed in control. Even when he was in desperate situations, he came up with inventive ways to be as fine as possible. ... I was part of the world he hoped to join after he got out of the Army,” Clark said.
Manning was not adapting well to the military culture. He clashed with a roommate he thought was anti-gay and one he thought was racist, according to a friend. He quarreled with other soldiers and pushed some chairs in anger. By August 2009, a supervisor, Master Sgt. Paul D. Adkins, noted that he was showing signs of “instability” and required him to seek mental health counseling, according to an Army report. Manning received an initial screening but no regular therapy, the report said. Because he could not discuss his romantic relationship with an Army therapist, Manning on his own saw a civilian counselor off the base.
Adkins and a major discussed leaving Manning behind when the unit deployed to Iraq in the fall, “as I felt he was a risk to himself and possibly others,” Adkins said in a statement. But the Army was short on intelligence analysts in Iraq. Manning was clearly bright and his behavior had started to improve, so his superiors decided to send him.
At the same time, Manning tried to reassure his family he would be okay. He told his aunt he was eager to use his training in a war zone. He told his sister not to worry because he would be “in an air-conditioned trailer behind the front line.”
On one of his last visits to Boston, Manning told Keith Rose, a friend he had met at Brandeis, of his misgivings about Iraq because of what he was learning as an intelligence analyst. “He expressed a feeling to me like how messed up the situation is,” Rose said. “He said things like, ‘If more people knew what was going on over there, they would not support the war.’ ”
In Baghdad, Manning worked in a drab warehouse-like building called a sensitive compartmented information facility, or SCIF. His job at Forward Operating Base Hammer was to detect threats in locally gathered information to keep troops out of danger. He told friends he enjoyed the intellectual challenge.
He also confided that his supervisor “completely knew [he was gay] and had no problem with it as long as he did his job properly,” Rose said. A few others knew, too, Manning told Clark, but in deference to the “don’t ask don’t tell” policy, he limited his gay signals to small things that wouldn’t get him tossed out of the Army. He kept a fairy wand on his desk and used an online account password of TWinkl.
Three months into his Baghdad assignment, by now promoted a rank, Manning had a two-week leave and flew back to the States to see his relatives in Potomac and his boyfriend in Boston. He also saw Clark, who took him to the hacker space open house at Boston University, a high point of his leave.
During the visit, according to Wired.com, which interviewed Watkins, Manning confided to his boyfriend that he had “gotten his hands on” sensitive information and was considering passing it to WikiLeaks. Since the Wired story, Watkins has not spoken to the media and did not return phone calls for this article. (After Manning’s arrest, federal investigators swooped into Boston looking for leads on WikiLeaks among Manning’s friends in the tech community, which one called a chilling experience.)
The lovers were not getting along. One evening, they went to a Triskelion meeting, and Rose said he noticed Manning sitting dejectedly in a corner. “He came home expecting some kind of homecoming, to be embraced. Instead, he’d been ignored.”
Shortly after Manning returned to Baghdad in February, WikiLeaks began posting documents that appeared to have been leaked from inside the U.S. government. They included an Army counterintelligence report warning of the risk of leaks from within the Army to WikiLeaks.
Founded in late 2006 by a peripatetic Australian and former hacker named Julian Assange, the site was conceived as an “uncensorable system for untraceable mass document leaking,” with servers peppered throughout the world. By early 2010, it had earned some ink for posting the “Climate-gate” e-mails from a British university and Sarah Palin’s private Yahoo e-mails.
But it was the April 2010 posting of a 2007 video shot from a U.S. Army helicopter hovering over the streets of Baghdad that put WikiLeaks on the map. The action is viewed through the crosshairs of an Apache gunship, as unseen shooters take aim at suspected insurgents, saying, “Light ’em all up. Come on, fire!” The gunfire killed about a dozen people, including two Reuters employees — a driver and a photographer, whose lens had been mistaken for a weapon. WikiLeaks dubbed the piece “Collateral Murder.”
Not long after, Manning e-mailed friends a link to the video, urging them to check it out. According to Wired.com, Manning messaged Watkins, asking, “Are people talking about it? ... That was one of his major concerns, that once he had done this, was it really going to make a difference? ... He wanted people held accountable and wanted to see this didn’t happen again.”
The same month the video appeared, Manning began to exhibit “bizarre behavior” at work, including showing “blank stares when spoken to” and stopping in mid-sentence, according to Master Sgt. Adkins in a memorandum written for an investigation into whether any supervisors should be punished for failing to properly discipline Manning and for failing to run a secure SCIF. The following sequence of events is taken from that report, portions of which were read to The Post.
Manning’s strange behavior increased in “frequency and intensity” and gave “an impression of disrespect and disinterest” to his superiors. Adkins sent Manning not to a therapist but to a chaplain.
On May 7, Manning left his work area about 6:30 p.m. and was found an hour later “sitting on the floor in a fetal position in a storage room.” It appeared as though he had been cutting open a vinyl chair. Etched in the chair were the words “I want.” A Gerber army knife lay at his feet.
Later that evening, having returned to his shift, he struck a female soldier in the face. He would later say he had no intention of hitting her and had no idea why he did.
The brigade psychiatrist, Capt. Edan Critchfield, diagnosed an “occupational problem and adjustment disorder with mixed disturbance of emotions and conduct.” Two sources familiar with the case said Manning’s adjustment disorder was related to “gender identity.” The psychiatrist recommended that Manning be discharged. The bolt was removed from his weapon, and he was reassigned to work in the supply room.
A day later, Capt. Matthew Freeburg decided to suspend Manning’s top-secret security clearance but never processed the paperwork. On May 24, Manning was demoted to private first class because of the assault.
Adkins, Critchfield and Freeburg all declined to comment for this story.
With his military career disintegrating, Manning turned to cyberspace. On May 9, he sent a Facebook message to a novelist in Minneapolis he had never met, wondering if he could speak to him “in confidence, sometime in the next year or so?”
Jonathan Odell, who is gay and writes about race and culture in the American South, said he was intrigued when Manning wrote that he had been involved in some “ ‘very high-profile events,’ albeit as a nameless individual thus far.”
Odell perused Manning’s Facebook wall. Manning again linked to an interview he gave anonymously, this time telling the Washington Blade (in an April 1, 2010, piece) that even though he was stressed because of the military’s gay policy, he had to “dodge” questions about sexuality in therapy sessions.
Odell said he thought the soldier “was reaching out for someone to tell his story” and messaged back that he understood, he had read the Facebook posts.
“Facebook,” Manning replied, “doesn’t even touch the surface.”
Odell said he never heard from Manning again.
Instead, less than two weeks later, an e-mail from Manning popped up in Sacramento on the laptop screen of Adrian Lamo, who had been convicted in 2004 of breaching the computer systems of the New York Times and others, and sentenced to six months’ house arrest. Lamo, a controversial figure in the hacker community, said in a series of phone interviews that he speculated that he had come to Manning’s attention because of tweets he wrote suggesting people donate money to WikiLeaks.
They continued their correspondence by instant message. Manning’s handle was Bradass87. He said he was an intelligence analyst pending discharge and had had “unprecedented access to classified networks 14 hours a day 7 days a week for 8+ months.” He also painted himself as “isolated,” “desperate,” “broken” and “self-medicating like crazy.”
And in the following hours, according to excerpts of chat logs provided to The Washington Post and Wired.com by Lamo, Manning referred extensively to what he said he found in the networks, including the quarter-million State Department cables — most of them unclassified — and the Baghdad video, “i want the material out there,” he said.
(The logs — Lamo provided The Post a small portion — have been authenticated by Army investigators, according to an intelligence official familiar with aspects of the case. According to a second source, the investigators matched the logs on Lamo’s hard drives with logs found on Manning’s hard drive.)
Lamo was impressed by the video leak but, he said, felt uneasy about the cables. He consulted an ex-boyfriend who had worked in counterintelligence, who advised him to turn the soldier in. Lamo did, three days after he began chatting with Manning. The chats continued, with Lamo probing for details.
And Manning appeared to be providing them, expressing a sense of outrage about the United States’ conduct in war and foreign policy. He said the cables revealed “crazy, almost criminal political backdealings.” In a chat published by Wired.com, he said: “The thing that got me most was discovering that 15 detainees taken by the Iraqi Federal Police for printing ‘anti-Iraqi’ literature” had in truth printed a “benign political critique” against the corruption in Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s cabinet. He “ran” that information to his superior. But the officer “told me to shut up and explain how we could assist” the federal police in finding more detainees.
“Everything started slipping after that,” he wrote. “I was actively involved in something that i was completely against.”
He noted at another point that if he were “more malicious,” he could have sold the cables to China or Russia — “made bank.” But the data, he said, belong in the public domain. “Information should be free.”
Lamo later said he was “deeply conflicted” about reporting Manning, “given that Bradley is an individual acting out of his conscience and his desire to make the world a better place. ... However, he was actively trying to disrupt U.S. foreign policy.”
Lamo asked Manning what he would do if his role with WikiLeaks “seemed in danger of being blown?”
Manning replied: “i don’t think it’s going to happen”
“i mean, i was never noticed ...
“and who would honestly expect so much information to be exfiltrated from a field network?”
Long before the terrorist attacks of 2001, the Defense Department created a secure network to share operational plans and intelligence among military personnel. The data obtained by WikiLeaks came from this network, the Secret Internet Protocol Router Network, or SIPRNet, to which more than half a million people have access. State Department cables are also accessible through SIPRnet because the department has found it less costly to piggyback on the military’s network than to build its own. But only employees with a “need to know” are authorized to see these cables.
Manning, despite his clearance, would not have had such a need. The Army alleges that he “knowingly exceeded [his] authorized access” to obtain the cables. He also lacked access to portions of the Afghan and Iraq databases, said the intelligence official familiar with the case, and allegedly installed unauthorized software on the SIPRnet to get at them.
The Army had security protocols that would have prevented the breach if followed, the official added. But safeguards to detect unauthorized installation of software had not been activated at the SCIF. Audit logs of computer activity were not reviewed. Bags were not inspected as personnel entered and left. To boost morale, the official said, people were allowed to bring in CDs and listen to them.
“The unit personnel that had responsibility for security of the network failed to do their job,” the official said. “It was flat-out apathy and a failure of the chain of command.”
In the chats, Manning appeared to share that view. “Everyone just sat at their workstations ... writing more stuff to CD/DVD,” he wrote Lamo. “ [The] culture fed opportunities. ... weak servers, weak logging, weak physical security, weak counterintelligence, inattentive signal analysis ... a perfect storm.”
Manning, with his history of emotional fragility, should at a minimum have had his clearance reviewed, said Joel F. Brenner, former national counterintelligence executive. His outbursts and emotional issues “should have been the big trigger.”
Nobody “cared about him,” said the intelligence official familiar with the case. “If somebody had taken an interest or tried to work with him, that very well may have changed his behavior.”
David Charney, a psychiatrist who has consulted on espionage cases, said supervisors can be trained to recognize signs of distress in people before they take actions that could harm national security. Young adults often don’t know their place in the world. “When there’s a lot of confusion about that,” he said, “then you really are talking about a deeper sense of being unmoored in life.”
Bradley Manning was detained on May 29 and held in Kuwait. On July 29, he was transferred to Quantico, where his treatment became an international cause celebre. The U.N. special rapporteur on torture asked to see him without being monitored but was not permitted to do so. In mid-April, Manning was moved to a medium-security facility at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, which officials said has a greater array of mental health services. He has been deemed competent to stand trial. Army officials said he "maintains a presumption of innocence" throughout the pretrial process. He had not entered a plea as this story went to press.
“We have seen nothing that proves to us that he did it,” Debra Manning said.
Friends and relatives who have visited Manning say he tries to keep abreast of current events, following, for instance, the uprisings across the Middle East and the men’s college basketball tournament.
“He tries to think about the outside world as much as possible,” his cousin Chris in Potomac said. “You can tell he doesn’t want his mind confined to the prison.”
Ellen Nakashima is a Washington Post staff writer. She can be reached at email@example.com. Staff writer Greg Jaffe and staff researchers Julie Tate, Alice Crites and Jennifer Jenkins contributed to this story. This portrait of Manning’s life comes from interviews with more than 30 relatives, friends and colleagues. Some asked for anonymity because of the political sensitivity of the case.
Image of WikiLeaks flag by Graphic Tribe
“For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad.” Mark 4:22
One way secret things are being manifested, is through a website called, “WikiLeaks.”
Julian Assange launched WikiLeaks in December 2006. The Australian programmer and internet activist created WikiLeaks.org as an international website dedicated to publishing secretive, private or classified information.
Here are 32 interesting facts about WikiLeaks.
“True information does good.”
Personal Notes: It’s hard for me to know what to think about WikiLeaks. While I like the idea of exposing corruption, I don’t appreciate some of the leaks Wikileaks released. I think there is some private information that should be kept private. Unless there is corruption to reveal, I don’t think it’s necessary to publish private information from good-willed organizations. I’m grateful to know God is just and will take care of any injustices that happen in this life.
October 29, 2012
Publisher’s Note: As we were preparing this page for publication on October 29, the post-tropical storm that ravaged the east coast of the United States caused massive power outages and put more than eight million people in the dark. The New York City building that houses Narco News’ Internet server lost electricity, our server was successfully transferred to
Since 2000, Narco News has reported about many social movements, community organizing and civil resistance campaigns. Some succeeded in their goals. Others did not. In this work we have found common practices shared by many victorious struggles, and common errors or missteps shared by many that did not succeed. The sum of lessons learned through reporting thousands of these stories in many lands today becomes the basis for a massive, free, online and multimedia resource that Narco News, with the scholars and professors of our school, have begun preparing for The School of Authentic Journalism’s Manual to Change the World. This page you are reading right now is the very first lesson presented of many to come. The Manual will feature more pages, like this one, with the testimony of the Egyptians on how they accomplished the first step of their revolution – toppling the dictator – and continue advancing toward the longer-term goal of toppling the dictatorship. The Manual will also include stories of how civil resistance and organizing battles in other lands were won, and also checklists and “how to” lessons from authentic journalists who reported them to share their skills and experiences so that anyone can learn and apply them – in writing and reporting, video and audio, and use of the Internet – to report on the social movements in the present and the future. With this Manual, we are taking another step forward in making the lessons and curriculum of the School of Authentic Journalism available to the entire world, gratis.
Applications to the April 2013 School of Authentic Journalism are due November 18. Consult this announcement for more information.
In March 2011, just weeks after the Egyptian Revolution brought the fall of the dictator Hosni Mubarak, the Narco News School of Authentic Journalism went to Cairo to interview key participants about their direct lived experience during those historic moments.
We asked each of them these questions:
On Friday January 28 the regime turned off the Internet. Did that change your experience of the revolution?If you are someone who had spent a lot of time online before then, how did you spend those newly free hours during the four or five days that there was no Internet?And what do you think about claims by some international media that the Egypt resistance was a “Twitter revolution” or “Facebook revolution”?Did the shut down of the Internet hurt the cause or did it help? Why or why not?
If you are someone who had spent a lot of time online before then, how did you spend those newly free hours during the four or five days that there was no Internet?
And what do you think about claims by some international media that the Egypt resistance was a “Twitter revolution” or “Facebook revolution”?
Did the shut down of the Internet hurt the cause or did it help? Why or why not?
Mohammed Abbas (youth organizer in January 2011 for the Muslim Brotherhood): We had of course the biggest support tools in Twitter and Facebook and
we have to be clear about that. I mean, we had a million members on
one page and 300,000 on another.
The Rasd Network gets 50,000 user hits daily because it is solely a
news network. People who report news from all over the world
send it to them and they publish it. We were expecting cuts in communications in terms of the Internet and
telephones. We knew it would happen. It first
started with Facebook: They blocked Facebook
and Twitter in Egypt. People of course began downloading alternate programs.
Nadia Banhassi (24, pediatrician): The Internet was cut off at dawn then around 10 a.m. all communications failed. No cell phone network was working. I moved with the medical team that was with me and we left the downtown area and moved toward the rest of the people in our group. And because of the cuts in communication, we couldn’t find the group so we had the alternative of moving to the next station where perhaps I might find one of them. So I moved and found some of them and we began to gather ourselves.
The cutting of the communications systems made it worse because most the event invitations that were sent to people were sent on Facebook and Twitter. So was the news that was released and sent to the world. All the networks and all websites were cut off completely and no one able to send anything. On January 25th at least we were able to send information on the spot about what was happening in Tahrir Square until midnight. So the world knew what was happening to us. But on the 28th the situation changed, we were totally cut off from the world. The whole world was detached from the butchery that was taking place.
Bradley Manning, the Army intelligence analyst accused of providing thousands of military records and diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks, has signaled he may plead guilty to a portion of the 34 charges currently facing him.
Manning made the offer, a move known as “pleading by exceptions and substitutions,” through his attorney, David Coombs, at a pre-trial hearing on Wednesday in Fort Meade, Maryland. If accepted by the court, Manning could avoid prosecution for some of the more serious charges he is accused of, including alleged offenses under the Espionage Act and the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
“To clarify, PFC Manning is not pleading guilty to the specifications as charged by the Government,” Coombs wrote in a statement. “Rather, PFC Manning is attempting to accept responsibility for offenses that are encapsulated within, or are a subset of, the charged offenses. The Court will consider whether this is a permissible plea.”
Even if the court OKs Manning’s offer, the prosecution can still decide not to accept it. If so, Manning would be free to rescind the offer without having it used against him in trial.
Manning also told the court Wednesday he is electing to stand trial by military judge, rather than a trial by jury, according to blogger Kevin Gosztola, who was at the hearing and first reported on the defense’s offer.
Manning is charged with leaking more than 260,000 diplomatic cables, 90,000 intelligence reports on the war in Afghanistan, and a video of a 2007 U.S. helicopter attack in Iraq that killed two employees of the Reuters news agency along with several other civilians. If convicted, he faces life in prison. His trial is scheduled to begin in February.
Bradley Manning. (AP Photo, File) As people who have worked for decades against the increased militarization of societies and for international cooperation to end war, we are deeply dismayed by the treatment of Pfc. Bradley Manning. We have dedicated our lives to working for peace because we have seen the many faces of armed conflict and violence, and we understand that no matter the cause of war, civilians always bear the brunt of the cost. With today’s advanced military technology and the continued ability of business and political elites to filter what information is made public, there exists a great barrier to many citizens being fully aware of the realities and consequences of conflicts in which their country is engaged.
Responsible governance requires fully informed citizens who can question their leadership. For those citizens worldwide who do not have direct, intimate knowledge of war, yet are still affected by rising international tensions and failing economies, the WikiLeaks releases attributed to Manning have provided unparalleled access to important facts.
Revealing covert crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, this window into the realities of modern international relations has changed the world for the better. While some of these documents may demonstrate how much work lies ahead in terms of securing international peace and justice, they also highlight the potential of the Internet as a forum for citizens to participate more directly in civic discussion and creative government accountability projects.
Questioning authority, as a soldier, is not easy. But it can at times be honorable. The words attributed to Manning reveal that he went through a profound moral struggle between the time he enlisted and when he became a whistleblower. Through his experience in Iraq, he became disturbed by top-level policy that undervalued human life and caused the suffering of innocent civilians and soldiers. Like other courageous whistleblowers, he was driven foremost by a desire to reveal the truth.
Private Manning said in chat logs that he hoped the releases would bring “discussion, debates and reforms” and condemned the ways the “first world exploits the third.” Much of the world regards him as a hero for these efforts toward peace and transparency, and he has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize as a result. However, much as when high-ranking officials in the United States and Britain misled the public in 2003 by saying there was an imminent need to invade Iraq to stop it from using weapons of mass destruction, the world’s most powerful elites have again insulted international opinion and the intelligence of many citizens by withholding facts regarding Manning and WikiLeaks.
The military prosecution has not presented evidence that Private Manning injured anyone by releasing secret documents, and it has asserted in court that the charge of “aiding the enemy through indirect means” does not require it to do so. Nor has the prosecution denied that his motivations were conscientious; it has simply argued they are irrelevant. In ignoring this context and recommending a much more severe punishment for Bradley Manning than is given to US soldiers guilty of murdering civilians, military leadership is sending a chilling warning to other soldiers who might feel compelled by conscience to reveal misdeeds. It is our belief that leaders who use fear to govern, rather than sharing wisdom born from facts, cannot be just.
We Nobel Peace Prize laureates condemn the persecution Bradley Manning has suffered, including imprisonment in conditions declared “cruel, inhuman and degrading” by the United Nations, and call upon Americans to stand up in support of this whistleblower who defended their democratic rights. In the conflict in Iraq alone, more than 110,000 people have died since 2003, millions have been displaced and nearly 4,500 American soldiers have been killed. If someone needs to be held accountable for endangering Americans and civilians, let’s first take the time to examine the evidence regarding high-level crimes already committed, and what lessons can be learned. If Bradley Manning released the documents, as the prosecution contends, we should express to him our gratitude for his efforts toward accountability in government, informed democracy and peace.
To learn more about Bradley Manning’s case or to get involved, visit the Bradley Manning Support Network website.
In our September 17 issue, JoAnn Wypijewski examined the situation of the founder of Wikileaks, in “For Julian Assange: Justice Foreclosed.”
Filed in: News - Security & Privacy
By Michael Moore
Dear President Obama:
Good luck on your journeys overseas this week, and congratulations on decisively winning your second term as our president! The first time you won four years ago, most of us couldn't contain our joy and found ourselves literally in tears over your victory.
This time, it was more like breathing a huge sigh of relief. But, like the smooth guy you are, you scored the highest percentage of the vote of any Democrat since Lyndon Johnson, and you racked up the most votes for a Democratic president in the history of the United States (the only one to receive more votes than you was ... you, in '08!). You are the first Democrat to get more than 50% of the vote twice in a row since Franklin D. Roosevelt.
This was truly another historic election and I would like to take a few minutes of your time to respectfully ask that your second term not resemble your first term.
It's not that you didn't get anything done. You got A LOT done. But there are some very huge issues that have been left unresolved and, dammit, we need you to get some fight in you. Wall Street and the uber-rich have been conducting a bloody class war for over 30 years and it's about time they were stopped.
I know it is not in your nature to be aggressive or confrontational. But, please, Barack – DO NOT listen to the pundits who are telling you to make the "grand compromise" or move to the "center" (FYI – you're already there). Your fellow citizens have spoken and we have rejected the crazed ideology of this Republican Party and we insist that you forcefully proceed in bringing about profound change that will improve the lives of the 99%. We're done hoping. We want real change. And, if we can't get it in the second term of a great and good man like you, then really – what's the use? Why are we even bothering? Yes, we're that discouraged and disenchanted.
At your first post-election press conference last Wednesday you were on fire. The way you went all "Taxi Driver" on McCain and company ("You talkin' to me?") was so brilliant and breathtaking I had to play it back a dozen times just to maintain the contact high. Jesus, that look – for a second I thought laser beams would be shooting out of your eyes! MORE OF THAT!! PLEASE!!
In the weeks after your first election you celebrated by hiring the Goldman Sachs boys and Wall Street darlings to run our economy. Talk about a buzzkill that I never fully recovered from. Please – not this time. This time take a stand for all the rest of us – and if you do, tens of millions of us will not only have your back, we will swoop down on Congress in a force so large they won't know what hit them (that's right, McConnell – you're on the retirement list we've put together for 2014).
BUT – first you have to do the job we elected you to do. You have to take your massive 126-electoral vote margin and just go for it.
Here are my suggestions:
1. DRIVE THE RICH RIGHT OFF THEIR FISCAL CLIFF. The "fiscal cliff" is a ruse, an invention by the Right and the rich, to try and keep their huge tax breaks. On December 31, let ALL the tax cuts expire. Then, on January 1, put forth a bill that restores the tax cuts for 98% of the public. I dare the Republicans to vote against that! They can't and they won't. As for the spending cuts, the 2011 agreement states that, for every domestic program dollar the Republicans want to cut, a Pentagon dollar must also be cut. See, you are a genius! No way will the Right vote against the masters of war. And if by some chance they do, you can immediately put forth legislation to restore all the programs we, the majority, approve of. And for God's sake, man – declare Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid untouchable. They're not bankrupt or anywhere near it. If the rich paid the same percentage of Social Security tax on their entire income – the same exact rate everyone else pays – then there will suddenly be enough money in Social Security to last til at least the year 2080!
2. END ALL THE WARS NOW. Do not continue the war in Afghanistan (a thoroughly losing proposition if ever there was one) for two full more years! Why should one single more person have to die FOR NO REASON? Stop it. You know it's wrong. Bin Laden's dead, al Qaeda is decimated and the Afghans have to work out their own problems. Also, end the drone strikes and other covert military activities you are conducting in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Colombia and God knows where else. You think history is going to remember the United States as a great democracy? No, they're going to think of us as a nation that became addicted to war. They'll call us warlords. They'll say that in the 21st century America was so in need of oil that we'd kill anyone to get it. You know that's where this is going. This has to stop. Now.
3. END THE DRUG WAR. It is not only an abysmal failure, it has returned us to the days of slavery. We have locked up millions of African-Americans and Latinos and now fund a private prison-industrial complex that makes billions for a few lucky rich people. There are other ways to deal with the drugs that do cause harm – ways built around a sense of decency and compassion. We look like a bunch of sadistic racists. Stop it.
4. DECLARE A MORATORIUM ON HOME FORECLOSURES AND EVICTIONS. Millions of people are facing homelessness because of a crooked system enacted by the major banks and Wall Street firms. Put a pause on this and take 12 months to work out a different way (like, restructuring families' mortgages to reflect the true worth of their homes).
5. GET MONEY OUT OF POLITICS. You already know this one. The public is sick of it. Now's the time to act.
6. EXPAND OBAMACARE. Your health care law doesn't cover everyone. It is a cash cow for the insurance industry. Push for a single-payer system – Medicare for All – and include dentistry and mental health. This is the single biggest thing you could do to reduce the country's deficit.
7. RESTORE GLASS-STEAGALL. You must put back all the rigid controls on Wall Street that Reagan, Clinton and the Bushes removed – or else we face the possibility of another, much worse, crash. If they break the law, prosecute them the way you currently go after whistleblowers and medical marijuana dispensaries.
8. REDUCE STUDENT LOAN DEBT. No 22-year-old should have to enter the real world already in a virtual debtors' prison. This is cruel and no other democracy does this like we do. You were right to eliminate the banks as the profit-gouging lenders, but now you have to bring us back to the days when you and I were of college age and a good education cost us little or next to nothing. A few less wars would go a long to way to being able to afford this.
9. FREE BRADLEY MANNING. End the persecution and prosecution of an American hero. Bush and Cheney lied to a nation to convince us to go to war. Manning allegedly hacked the war criminals' files and then shared them with the American public (and the world) so that we could learn the truth about Iraq and Afghanistan. Our history is full of such people who "break the law" for the greater good of humanity. Army Specialist Bradley Manning deserves a medal, not prison.
10. ASK US TO DO SOMETHING. One thing is clear: none of the above is going to happen if you don't immediately mobilize the 63,500,000 who voted for you (and the other 40 million who are for you but didn't vote). You can't go this alone. You need an army of everyday Americans who will fight alongside you to make this a more just and peaceful nation. In your 2008 campaign, you were a pioneer in using social media to win the election. Over 15 million of us gave you our cell numbers or email addresses so you could send us texts and emails telling us what needed to be done to win the election. Then, as soon as you won, it was as if you hit the delete button. We never heard from you again. (Until this past year when you kept texting us to send you $25. Inspiring.) Whoever your internet and social media people were should have been given their own office in the West Wing – and we should have heard from you. Constantly. Need a bill passed? Text us and we will mobilize! The Republicans are filibustering? We can stop them! They won't approve your choice for Secretary of State? We'll see about that! You say you were a community organizer. Please – start acting like one.
The next four years can be one of those presidential terms that changed the course of America. I'm sure you will want to be judged on how you stood up for us, restored the middle class, ended the s***ting on the poor and made us a friend to the rest of the world instead of a threat. You can do this. We can do it with you. All that stands in the way is your understandable desire to sing "Kumbaya" with the Republicans. Don't waste your breath. Their professed love of America is negated by their profound hatred of you. Don't waste a minute on them. Fix the sad mess we're in. Go back and read this month's election results. We're with you.
P.S. President Obama – my cell number to text me at is 810-522-8398 and my email is MMFlint@MichaelMoore.com. I await my first assignment!
WikiLeaks founder's Cypherpunks warns tool he relies on and used to make his name is 'global surveillance industry' target
Julian Assange's new book is not a manifesto, he writes in its introduction – "There is no time for that". Instead the short volume, entitled Cypherpunks: Freedom and the Future of the Internet and published on Monday, is intended to be what the Wikileaks founder calls "a watchman's shout in the night", warning of an imminent threat to all civilisation from "the most dangerous facilitator of totalitarianism we have ever seen" – the web.
Assange announced in October his intention to publish the book, based largely on the transcript of an interview conducted earlier in the year with three fellow "cutting-edge thinkers" on the web, and broadcast on the Russian state-controlled TV channel RT.
But in his introduction, written from the small room in the Ecuadorean embassy in London to which he has been confined for more than five months, the Australian has described for the first time how he views the context for its publication.
It is not an upbeat assessment: thanks to the "global surveillance industry" and states that seek to control the net, he writes, "within a few years, global civilisation will be a postmodern surveillance dystopia, from which escape for all but the most skilled individuals will be impossible. In fact, we may already be there."
Assange sought political asylum from Ecuador on 19 June in order to avoid imminent extradition to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning in connection with alleged sex offences, including rape.
He has said that he fears onward extradition to the US, where a grand jury has been convened to investigate Wikileaks over its publication in 2010 of leaked US diplomatic cables, in this newspaper and elsewhere.
His request was later granted by Ecuador, which said he could stay inside the embassy for "two centuries" if necessary. Britain has said that if he tries to leave he will be arrested and extradited to Sweden, but that it would block any onward extradition request to the US if the Australian were to face a possible death penalty.
His experiences have influenced his world view, Assange acknowledges in his introduction. "While many writers have considered what the internet means for global civilisation, they are wrong … They are wrong because they have never met the enemy … We have met the enemy."
Jeremie Zimmermann, co-founder and spokesman for the French citizen advocacy group La Quadrature du Net (Squaring the Net) and one of Assange's named fellow authors, told the Guardian when the book was announced that it would cover "a wide range of issues: from surveillance to data protection, from corporate influence over politics to citizen participation and action, transparency and accountability, from liberalism to anarchism, from copyright enforcement to culture, from flying killing robots (drones) to representation of crime scenes depicting abuse of children (child porn)".
Also contributing to the book are Jacob Applebaum, a US-based computer security expert, and Andy Müller-Maguhn, a leading German hacker.
Zimmermann said he had insisted on a bottle of whisky and some cigars when the four met, "to make the discussion more 'fluid' (no pun intended), cozy and friendly".
HACKER NEWShttp://www.ehackingnews.com/http://thehackernews.com/ARREST TRACKER FOR HACKERShttp://wiki.par-anoia.net/wiki/Main_Page
ANONYMOUS FAVORS THIS SITE FOR LEAKS
Enemy of the State Article about Jeremy Hammond in The Rolling Stone (Oct 26, 2012 · PDF, 2MB · Mirror)HOW TO REACH ANONYMOUS OR GET MORE INFO
Review: Cypherpunks: Freedom and the Future of the Internet
Cypherpunks1: Freedom and the Future of the Internet, by Julian Assange with Jacob Appelbaum, Andy Müller-Maguhn and Jérémie Zimmermann. OR Books, New York, 2012, 186 pages, Paper. Buy online
This is a highly informative book, perhaps the best published on the substance of WikiLeaks, its technology, philosophy, origin and purpose, rooted in the Cypherpunks resistance to authority through encryption and anonymizing technology. The trenchant and salient, wide-ranging discussion among Assange, Appelbaum, Müller-Maguhn and Zimmermann, is derived from a four-part RT series with additional editorial material and a summarizing prologue by Assange, "A Call to Cryptographic Arms."
It is an excellent introduction to the struggle for control of digital communications, economics and governance. A prime candidate for inclusion of reading lists of the enemies of authoritarian institutions, corporations and governments heavily invested in the Internet and aiming to control it by secret collusion for their purposes -- at the global public's expense, loss of privacy and reduced democracy. It claims to be a "watchman's warning" against the threat posed by the Internet and cellphone technology.
The panel asserts:
1. The internet is a threat to human civilization because of its panoptic surveillance and profiling of users.
2. "Strategic surveillance" gathers all online and cellphone data as distinguished from tactical surveillance with is specifically targeted.
3. Internet and cellphones allow surveillance more efficiently and pervasively than in the physical world.
4. Individuals can be surveilled more easily if they remain mesmerized by computers, cellphones and social media.
5. Encryption prevents access to private secrets by official and commercial online surveillance and by cellphones.
6. Protestors in Arab Spring went to the streets when cellphone and online systems were disabled and thereby escaped digital surveillance.
7. General purpose computers avoid the built-in controls of special purpose computers and devices.
8. Free software avoids the control of restrictive governmental and commercial software.
9. Free encryption and anonymizing technologies can protect against authoritarian aggression embedded in the equipment and operating systems of computers, cellphones, networks, internet service providers, financial institutions and governments.
10. Younger generations will need to invent and distribute ideas, critiques, code and technology against the legacy controls of older generations indoctrinated in submissive acceptance of authority.
11. Diverse, heterogenic concepts and technology will be required to oppose centralizing, homogenizing intents of the government- and commerce-dominated Internet and cellphones.
Evgeny Morozov and other net-negativists may scowl at the blind faith in encryption and anonymizing technology to save the Internet for its all too gullible users. Some cypherpunks are appalled at what WikiLeaks and Assange have become through excessive publicity and promotion by supporters and opponents.2 The book could be seen as a compendium of what not to do about communications security, privacy, secrecy and authoritarianism -- for that it is to be studied carefully.
For me, the greatest virtue of this book is its description of what comes after the lessons learned of Cypherpunks and WikiLeaks -- from the diverse initiatives nobody yet knows about due to deliberate avoidance of preening, crippling publicity.3
Read between the book's lines, there are undisclosed means and methods inside them to panic decrypting and surveilling authoritarians and their opponents into attacking each other.4
Admire the book's critique of those obsessed with being in the vanguard of protecting the public, covert authoritarians in power-seeking, monetizing cahoots.
Lesson one: Protect yourself by keeping quiet, offline and sans cell, avoiding vanguards.
These comments will change, provoked by this book.
Note 1: Wikipedia on Cypherpunks
Note 2: This Machine Kills Secrets, by Andy Greenberg.
Note 3: Archive of Cypherpunk mail list 1992-1998 (Zipped, 83MB).
Note 4: Julian Assange writes on the Cypherpunks mail list 1995-2002.
Last week Amazon listed this book but today there is no listing (Amazon is a centralizing force criticized by the book, which may account for its USG-like censorship). Nor could a copy be found in three New York City bookstores. So we went to the publisher, OR Books, to buy a copy from its "R," Colin Robinson. from OR.
Julian Assange: Cryptographic Call to Arms
Excerpted from Cypherpunks: Freedom and the Future of the Internet, by Julian Assange with Jacob Appelbaum, Andy Müller-Maguhn and Jérémie Zimmermann. OR Books, New York, 2012, 186 pages, Paper. Buy online. Cryptome review of the book.
INTRODUCTION: A CALL TO CRYPTOGRAPHIC ARMS
This book is not a manifesto. There is not time for that. This book is a warning.
The world is not sliding, but galloping into a new transnational dystopia. This development has not been properly recognized outside of national security circles. It has been hidden by secrecy, complexity and scale. The internet, our greatest tool of emancipation, has been transformed into the most dangerous facilitator of totalitarianism we have ever seen. The internet is a threat to human civilization.
These transformations have come about silently, because those who know what is going on work in the global surveillance industry and have no incentives to speak out. Left to its own trajectory, within a few years, global civilization will be a postmodern surveillance dystopia, from which escape for all but the most skilled individuals will be impossible. In fact, we may already be there.
While many writers have considered what the internet means for global civilization, they are wrong. They are wrong because they do not have the sense of perspective that direct experience brings. They are wrong because they have never met the enemy.
No description of the world survives first contact with the enemy.
We have met the enemy.
Over the last six years WikiLeaks has had conflicts with nearly every powerful state. We know the new surveillance state from an insider's perspective, because we have plumbed its secrets. We know it from a combatant's perspective, because we have had to protect our people, our finances and our sources from it. We know it from a global perspective, because we have people, assets and information in nearly every country. We know it from the perspective of time, because we have been fighting this phenomenon for years and have seen it double and spread, again and again. It is an invasive parasite, growing fat off societies that merge with the internet. It is rolling over the planet, infecting all states and peoples before it.
What is to be done?
Once upon a time in a place that was neither here nor there, we, the constructors and citizens of the young internet discussed the future of our new world.
We saw that the relationships between all people would be mediated by our new world, and that the nature of states, which are defined by how people exchange information, economic value, and force, would also change.
We saw that the merger between existing state structures and the internet created an opening to change the nature of states.
First, recall that states are systems through which coercive force flows. Factions within a state may compete for support, leading to democratic surface phenomena, but the underpinnings of states are the systematic application, and avoidance, of violence. Land ownership, property, rents, dividends, taxation, court fines, censorship, copyrights and trademarks are all enforced by the threatened application of state violence.
Most of the time we are not even aware of how close to violence we are, because we all grant concessions to avoid it. Like sailors smelling the breeze, we rarely contemplate how our surface world is propped up from below by darkness.
In the new space of the internet what would be the mediator of coercive force?
Does it even make sense to ask this question? In this otherworldly space, this seemingly platonic realm of ideas and information flow, could there be a notion of coercive force? A force that could modify historical records, tap phones, separate people, transform complexity into rubble, and erect walls, like an occupying army?
The platonic nature of the internet, ideas and information flows, is debased by its physical origins. Its foundations are fiber optic cable lines stretching across the ocean floors, satellites spinning above our heads, computer servers housed in buildings in cities from New York to Nairobi. Like the soldier who slew Archimedes with a mere sword, so too could an armed militia take control of the peak development of Western civilization, our platonic realm.
The new world of the internet, abstracted from the old world of brute atoms, longed for independence. But states and their friends moved to control our new world -- by controlling its physical underpinnings. The state, like an army around an oil well, or a customs agent extracting bribes at the border, would soon learn to leverage its control of physical space to gain control over our platonic realm. It would prevent the independence we had dreamed of, and then, squatting on fiber optic lines and around satellite ground stations, it would go on to mass intercept the information flow of our new world -- its very essence even as every human, economic, and political relationship embraced it. The state would leech into the veins and arteries of our new societies, gobbling up every relationship expressed or communicated, every web page read, every message sent and every thought googled, and then store this knowledge, billions of interceptions a day, undreamed of power, in vast top secret warehouses, forever. It would go on to mine and mine again this treasure, the collective private intellectual output of humanity, with ever more sophisticated search and pattern finding algorithms, enriching the treasure and maximizing the power imbalance between interceptors and the world of interceptees. And then the state would reflect what it had learned back into the physical world, to start wars, to target drones, to manipulate UN committees and trade deals, and to do favors for its vast connected network of industries, insiders and cronies.
But we discovered something. Our one hope against total domination. A hope that with courage, insight and solidarity we could use to resist. A strange property of the physical universe that we live in.
The universe believes in encryption.
It is easier to encrypt information than it is to decrypt it.
We saw we could use this strange property to create the laws of a new world. To abstract away our new platonic realm from its base underpinnings of satellites, undersea cables and their controllers. To fortify our space behind a cryptographic veil. To create new lands barred to those who control physical reality, because to follow us into them would require infinite resources.
And in this manner to declare independence.
Scientists in the Manhattan Project discovered that the universe permitted the construction of a nuclear bomb. This was not an obvious conclusion. Perhaps nuclear weapons were not within the laws of physics. However, the universe believes in atomic bombs and nuclear reactors. They are a phenomenon the universe blesses, like salt, sea or stars.
Similarly, the universe, our physical universe, has that property that makes it possible for an individual or a group of individuals to reliably, automatically, even without knowing, encipher something, so that all the resources and all the political will of the strongest superpower on earth may not decipher it. And the paths of encipherment between people can mesh together to create regions free from the coercive force of the outer state. Free from mass interception. Free from state control.
In this way, people can oppose their will to that of a fully mobilized superpower and win. Encryption is an embodiment of the laws of physics, and it does not listen to the bluster of states, even transnational surveillance dystopias.
It isn't obvious that the world had to work this way. But somehow the universe smiles on encryption.
Cryptography is the ultimate form of non-violent direct action. While nuclear weapons states can exert unlimited violence over even millions of individuals, strong cryptography means that a state, even by exercising unlimited violence, cannot violate the intent of individuals to keep secrets from them.
Strong cryptography can resist an unlimited application of violence. No amount of coercive force will ever solve a math problem.
But could we take this strange fact about the world and build it up to be a basic emancipatory building block for the independence of mankind in the platonic realm of the internet? And as societies merged with the internet could that liberty then be reflected back into physical reality to redefine the state?
Recall that states are the systems which determine where and how coercive force is consistently applied.
The question of how much coercive force can seep into the platonic realm of the internet from the physical world is answered by cryptography and the cypherpunks' ideals.
As states merge with the internet and the future of our civilization becomes the future of the internet, we must redefine force relations.
If we do not, the universality of the internet will merge global humanity into one giant grid of mass surveillance and mass control.
We must raise an alarm. This book is a watchman's shout in the night.
On March 20, 2012, while under house arrest in the United Kingdom awaiting extradition, I met with three friends and fellow watchmen on the principle that perhaps in unison our voices can wake up the town. We must communicate what we have learned while there is still a chance for you, the reader, to understand and act on what is happening.
It is time to take up the arms of our new world, to fight for ourselves and for those we love.
Our task is to secure self-determination where we can, to hold back the coming dystopia where we cannot, and if all else fails, to accelerate its self-destruction.
-- Julian Assange, London, October 2012
Adrian Lamo on Hacker Cold War
Adrian Lamo sends:
I'm rewriting this, at least in part, after having Disqus lose it in whole. It's part response and part furtherance to and of Andrew Alan "weev" Auernheimer's Wired op-ed
It bears repeating, so I might as well get it out at least the one time.
His piece kind of conflates netcentric and codecentric security disclosures, which are in no way equivalent in their risk or their objective morality. Both exist as a kind of potential energy in cyberspace, but as any reader of Neuromancer could tell you, one takes you into potentially dangerous territory.
I'd always taken the sort of view that says security issues will be eventually disclosed, so a public and effective disclosure is the best practice when they come up. But as conflicts of interest in cyberspace become more frequent and more muddled, he's right - disclosure may not always be the best policy.
I know, I'm as surprised as anyone that I found myself agreeing here, but do hear me out. Software exploits are no longer clever bits of data that could poke holes in data, but exist only to prove a concept (if, indeed, they ever were). More or less anything that can possibly be weaponized online is actively being weaponized, and it has been for some time.
We see the occasional end results a hack here, a disclosure theree, a credit card fraud epidemic elsewhere. What is less public, and what infosec news (if they're aware of it) doesn't report is the interests that tie these things together. We all know about things like, say, China hacking Google, or (unrelatedly) Mitt Romney's tax theft being hoaxed. These things do not happen in a vacuum.
The reasons rarely come out because the actors, if ever identified, are rarely identified by legal process when they are either sufficiently connected (not unlikely past a certain point of criminal ambition) or because they are in some way state actors (or both). No one credibly believes that, say, Ehud Tenenbaum was on vacation in the decade between being praised for marathon hackery of US military networks by Israeli then-prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and being arrested again to face an unusually lenient sentence of time served for million-dollar fraudulent indiscretions that became too inconvenient to ignore.
Given these relationships, the security community may have taken a wrong turn at the Zimmermann-era furor over PGP & encryption being "munitions". Arms dealers enjoy a far more favorable and balanced relationship with their clients than many hackers do with their own governments. Netcentric disclosure is no longer worth it to many unless their target is politically, militarily, or economically convenient to their governments (flashbacks of Saddam Hussein's e-mail being hacked by a US national during the Second Gulf War) or sufficiently exigent as to justify the risk. And codecentric disclosure is at its base an acceptance of any use of that code which follows.
And yet hackers & security technicians are uniquely relied on for these soft conflicts of the electronic sort, but lack the vested, rigid interests and inertia of states. Agreement between various de facto combatant populations online could be achieved via this demographic long before their various states would ever come to the table. But as it stands now, these people are vastly more likely to be a tool of policy, not influencers of it. And they are likely to be penalized if they challenge the convention that governments hold a monopoly on legitimate use of force in cyberspace.
I've may have wandered a long way from what Andrew set out to say, but if I have, it's only further down the same path. Recognizing what goes on, especially with respect to how the Internet is being used and influenced, is both a form of personal responsibility for any citizen and a way to give them a stake in the interests previously excluded to them. Bluntly put, we are contributing to a hacker cold war. We are contributing to the use of force in cyberspace, but largely without a vote. Perhaps we should have written a Geneva convention for the Internet before we optimistically declared its independence. I hope dialogue between peoples will prove that doubt unfounded
"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm
Pfc. Bradley Manning faces a potential life sentence if convicted of leaking documents.
FORT MEADE, Md. — In a half-empty courtroom here, with a crew of fervent supporters in attendance, Pfc. Bradley Manning and his lawyer have spent the last two weeks turning the tables on the government.
Private Manning’s lawyer, David Coombs, has questioned officials about why he was held in isolation in Quantico, Va.
Private Manning faces a potential life sentence if convicted on charges that he gave WikiLeaks, the antisecrecy organization, hundreds of thousands of confidential military and diplomatic documents. But for now, he has been effectively putting on trial his former jailers at the Quantico, Va., Marine Corps base. His lawyer, David E. Coombs, has grilled one Quantico official after another, demanding to know why his client was kept in isolation and stripped of his clothing at night as part of suicide-prevention measures.
Mr. Coombs, a polite but relentless interrogator who stands a foot taller than his client, has laid bare deep disagreements inside the military: psychiatrists thought the special measures unnecessary, while jail commanders ignored their advice and kept the suicide restrictions in place. In a long day of testimony last week, Private Manning of the Army, vilified as a dangerous traitor by some members of Congress but lauded as a war-crimes whistle-blower on the political left, heartened his sympathizers with an eloquent and even humorous performance on the stand.
“He was engaged, chipper, optimistic,” said Bill Wagner, 74, a retired NASA solar physicist who is a courtroom regular, dressed in the black “Truth” T-shirt favored by Private Manning’s supporters.
Private Manning, who turns 25 on Dec. 17 and looks much younger, was quietly attentive during Friday’s court session, in a dress uniform, crew-cut blond hair and wire-rimmed glasses. If his face were not already familiar from television news, he might have been mistaken for a first-year law student assisting the defense team.
It seemed incongruous that he has essentially acknowledged responsibility for the largest leak of classified material in history. The material included a quarter-million State Department cables whose release may have chilled diplomats’ ability to do their work discreetly but also helped fuel the Arab Spring; video of American helicopter crews shooting people on the ground in Baghdad who they thought were enemy fighters but were actually Reuters journalists; field reports on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; and confidential assessments of the detainees locked up at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
As the military pursues the case against Private Manning, the Justice Department continues to explore the possibility of charging WikiLeaks’ founder, Julian Assange, or other activists with the group, possibly as conspirators in Private Manning’s alleged offense. Federal prosecutors in Alexandria, Va., are still assigned to that investigation, according to law enforcement officials, but it is not clear how active they have been lately in presenting evidence to a grand jury.
The current tone of the legal proceedings against Private Manning is most likely temporary. His lawyer is asking the judge overseeing the case to throw out the charges on the ground that his pretrial treatment was unlawful, but that outcome appears unlikely.
As a fallback, Mr. Coombs is hoping the court will at least give Private Manning extra credit against any ultimate sentence for the time he spent held under harsh conditions at Quantico and earlier in Kuwait, where he was kept in what he described as “an animal cage.” After the uproar about his treatment, including public criticism from the State Department’s top spokesman and the United Nations’ top torture expert, military officials moved Private Manning in April 2011 from Quantico to a new prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., where he has not faced the same restrictions on clothing, sleeping conditions and conversation with other inmates.
As if to underscore the gravity of his legal predicament, Private Manning offered last month to plead guilty to lesser charges that could send him to prison for 16 years. Prosecutors have not said whether they are interested in such a deal, which would mean they would have to give up seeking a life sentence for the most serious charges: aiding the enemy and violating the Espionage Act.
Friday’s court session was attended by a dozen Manning loyalists, including Thomas A. Drake, the former National Security Agency official who was accused of leaking documents and pleaded guilty to a minor charge last year. They heard the commander of the Quantico brig, or military jail, explain why she refused Private Manning’s request to be taken off “prevention of injury” status. (Page 2 of 2)
Chief Warrant Officer Denise Barnes, who was in charge of the brig for the last four months of Private Manning’s time there, said that the soldier declined her many requests to describe his emotional state in detail. Because of some odd behavior and two previous statements he had made that flagged him as a suicide risk, she said she was unwilling to change his status — despite the advice of military psychiatrists — until he opened up to her about how he was feeling.
Over the months she spent with him, speaking briefly with him each day, he grew less communicative and more monosyllabic, Ms. Barnes said.
“He did not clearly communicate to me, ‘I don’t want to kill myself,’ ” she said. “There was never an intent to punish Pfc. Manning.”
Ms. Barnes referred in passing to online attacks on her earlier this year by activists, one of whom called her a “sexual sadist.” She said she had no ill will against Private Manning “even though I was threatened and my family’s information was put out on the Internet.”
As Private Manning awaits a court-martial, now scheduled for March, Mr. Assange is holed up at Ecuador’s embassy in London, where he has lived since Ecuador granted him asylum in August. British officials have refused to grant him safe passage out of the country.
Mr. Assange faces no charges in connection with WikiLeaks but is wanted for questioning in Sweden in connection with allegations of sexual assault. He has expressed concern that Swedish authorities might extradite him to the United States.
From his embassy refuge, Mr. Assange has recently conducted a series of often-contentious television interviews with CNN, BBC and other news outlets, accusing the United States of torturing Private Manning. WikiLeaks supporters have theorized that the tough treatment of the soldier may have been designed to pressure him to testify against Mr. Assange.
No evidence has surfaced to support that theory. But if Private Manning’s offer to admit to reduced charges leads to serious plea negotiations, his cooperation in any future prosecution against WikiLeaks could conceivably be part of a deal.
LeaksWiki is a wiki about leaking organizations, the tools and methods used in leaking, and how leaking can improve in the future. The term leaking organization is used broadly to refer to any organization engaged in the disclosure of restricted information.
Transparency is changing. Leaking websites and organizations are increasingly widespread. In large part, this rise of leaking organizations is likely due to the controversies around WikiLeaks. Leaking organizations are noteworthy because they separate the source from the release of the document or information and thus significantly alter the process of leaking, disclosure, and whistleblowing. This separation has a few important implications. First, the separation of the source from the document release makes the leaking process safer for the source or whistleblower. Anonymous submission systems give the source anonymity in the initial transmission of documents and the disconnection of the source from the release makes the source less traceable. Second, the process becomes easier for the source to release any documents or more documents. The intermediary leaking organization can study the documents in-depth, prepare them for release, work with media partners, and perhaps advocate for correction of a wrongdoing. Third, there is now a middleman in the process, the leaking organization. However, this can be both a benefit and a detriment. The leaking organization can be an additional security risk to the source and innocent people mentioned in the leaked documents, but it is also a body often (but not always) independent of government agencies, companies, and mainstream media institutions. The independence of the leaking organization may sometimes make it easier for them to serve as an additional check on traditional institutions. Fourth, there is now a group of people tasked primarily with determining how to make a leak successful and broadly defining what a successful release of leaked documents means.
Leaking organizations are enabled by technology, which explains why they are a fairly new phenomenon. The anonymity of the source requires additional layers of separation between the leaking website and the source. Usually, these take the form of the Internet, encryption, tools like Tor, and other security technologies. Technology also makes the leak more feasible and enables large leaks. Greenberg refers to these large leaks as 'megaleaks'. Large releases, like the Pentagon Papers, were possible before the Internet and the rise of leaking organizations but Megaleaks are only feasible because of the existence of computers, increasing information storage capacity, the ability for many people to view documents online, and faster uploads and downloads. Leaking organizations further enable megaleaks by examining and preparing large leaks for release. They are a technology-enabled way of outsourcing parts of the whistleblowing or disclosure process. Some leaking organizations even outsource the process by using crowd sourcing in document processing. Additionally, the people involved in leaking organizations and those reading the documents after release are only able to fully understand megaleaks because the Internet makes more information available to non-experts than ever before. Leaking organizations are a way of taking power away from these experts and institutions who would have normally handled documents that are now leaked.
Leaking organizations can be powerful forces of social change. The ideal type of change varies based on the ideology of the specific leaking organization. Some organizations hope to correct specific wrongdoings. Others want to publicize certain information. Some seek to encourage a general culture of transparency. The specific ideology of a leaking organization determines how it views the leaking process, transparency, whistleblowing, and leaking itself. The model is not perfect, but leaking organizations can be roughly placed on a spectrum of ideologies from radical transparency to selective release. The diagram below shows this spectrum with leaking organizations placed on it.
Radical transparency means releasing absolutely everything. A radically transparent leaking organization would have a website that listed all data on all visitors and a submission form that automatically posted the document and the information of the source with no modifications. The people who run the organization would post all information they came across in their lives. This is impossible but it represents one extreme of the spectrum.
Selective release means releasing the minimum information possible and all information being released with a specific agenda. Technically, the spectrum could end at no release of information but this is a spectrum of leaking organizations which inherently release information. A FOIA-resistant government agency that begrudgingly declassified only information that would aid the organization, serve as propaganda, or harm an adversary would be close to the selective release end. This end of the spectrum represents both increased secrecy and leaking as an extension of authority.
Both extremes on the spectrum of transparency ideologies are quite problematic. Indeed, the extremes are actually similar enough that the spectrum may be better portrayed as a loop. If a leaking organization released all information it possibly could, there would be too much information available for any of it to be useful, and few people would want to interact with the leaking organization for fear of their personal information being released. Thus, the leaking organization would stop receiving information. Similarly, an organization that released almost no information would be unable to interact with the world and would eventually shut down.
As a result, most or all leaking organizations fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, but few can be placed exactly in the center of it. Organizations focused on transparency and promoting free information usually fall closer to the radical transparency end, while organizations whose priority is whistleblowing and correcting wrongdoings usually are closer to the selective release end. The exact placement on the spectrum also varies based on the goals and priorities of the leaking organization.
It is becoming far too common that websites or services purporting to disseminate information are designed for nefarious reasons. Some, like Cryptome, retain an image "Paypal Button" which is used by that entity for tracking every client to that site. Others, especially the trend oriented sites, have critical faults like Par-Anoia using the suicidal middleman Gmail for all communications. Wikileaks has an obvious design, to launder submissions selectively ensuring that their own organized crime syndicates are provided the information first and have ample opportunity for extortion or blackmail. Most other systems have similar implications -- as soon as their operation is known it becomes an immediate wiretap by consortiums of multinational entities, frequently employing an ISP or telcom level Man-In-Middle proxy route to molest and exploit all data sources. See also "Open Source Intelligence"
The ideological placement of a leaking organization on the transparency spectrum significantly changes the leaking process. For example, Cryptome, a leaking organization closer to the radical transparency end of the spectrum, tries to avoid making changes or adding any information to the documents because it contributes to the problem of leaking as an extension of authority. On the other hand, Juzne vesti, an organization closer to the selective release end, uses leaked documents as a supplement to articles that contain background information and their interpretations of a situation. Despite these differences, leaking organizations seem to share a general process. This broad leaking process derived from my case studies is outlined in the chart below.
This diagram looks at the process primarily from the perspective of the leaking organization. The source leaks documents and post-release actions are there to capture steps the source or others take before and after the release in which the leaking organization may be involved. These vary widely, not only based on the organization, but also the source and leaked information.
The organization receives documents step involves the organization getting the documents from the source in some form. The method of transmission can vary widely, as can the documents transmitted. Documents here refers to any leaked information from millions of emails to a tip about corruption. The level of involvement of the leaking organization in this step also varies as some organizations advise sources on security practices and have secure submissions systems while others leave security to the source. Additionally, a few organizations find some of the documents they release.
Leak processing is the intermediate step where leaking organizations prepare documents for release by making the information usable and safe. This is the primary focus of most leaking organizations and generally the most time consuming step. There are three parts of this step and their exact order varies by organization and release: verification, redaction, and analysis/formatting. The verification sub-step involves tasks like checking the authenticity of a document and determining if the leak meets the organization's criteria for release. The redaction sub-step includes the removal of any information from names to metadata to parts of the document. The analysis/formatting step is any summary, addition of background information, mention of wrongdoings, or general preparation for release. The specific approach to these sub-steps depends on the organization.
The release step is the posting of documents, supplementary information, or articles from media partners. This could be followed by interviews about the release, advocacy for reform, or other post-release steps to help increase the effectiveness of the release. More information on the leaking process and examples of how each step is handled by different organizations can be found on the Leaking Process page.
Unfortuantely, the leaking process lacks transparency. The post-release steps are usually publicly visible and the pre-release steps are often documented on the organization's website, but the leak processing step is shrouded in mystery. Some generalities can be implied by release practices of the organization, but specific details must be pieced together like a puzzle from interviews, assumptions, and rumors. This should not be necessary and will lead to misunderstandings. This intermediary step is the primary function of leaking organizations, yet the most difficult. Thus, it is important the organization improve the leak processing step as much as possible as it determines the effectiveness of a release and the leaking organization in general. While the exact definition of effectiveness will vary based on the organization's transparency ideology and approach, leak processing is universally important.
It is crucial that the leaking organizations be more transparent. LeaksWiki is an attempt to increase transparency in the leaking with the goal of making leaking organizations more effective by improving their process within the context of their transparency ideology.
Julian Assange Wants to Run for …
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has revealed his intention to run for the Australian senate on a new WikiLeaks party ticket in 2013, The Age's Philip Dorling reports, and his chances aren't as slim as you might imagine — despite his residence in Ecuador following allegations of rape in Sweden. Assange is currently living in political asylum in Ecuador, but that doesn't mean he can't be involved in Australian politics: "If Mr Assange were elected but he was unable to return to Australia to take up his position, a nominee would occupy a Senate seat," Dorling writes. Assange says his plans to register a WikiLeaks party are "significantly advanced," and that "a number of very worthy people admired by the Australian public" have said they'd be interested on running on a WikiLeaks ticket. And Australians might be interested in a WikiLeaks ticket, too! From Doring:
"A cantankerous press, an obstinate press, an ubiquitous press must be suffered by those in authority in order to preserve the even greater values of freedom of expression and the right of the people to know." -- Judge Murray Gurfein, Pentagon Papers case, June 17, 1971
In December 2010, WikiLeaks started publishing a selection of leaked U.S. State Department cables through the New York Times, the Guardian, and other traditional media, opening a deep crack in the thickening wall of secrecy that has been forming worldwide around the internal processes of democracy since 9/11. They helped catalyze the "Arab Spring." They struck a blow for the right of citizens everywhere to know what is being done in our names. And they thoroughly freaked out the U.S. Government, sending it into a security spasm of Cold War proportions.
It reminded us strongly of another era, when one of us, Daniel Ellsberg, was called "the most dangerous man in America" by the White House and prosecuted for revealing to the American people what was really going on in Vietnam. Efforts to stop the publication of the Pentagon Papers ended when the Supreme Court declared that the government cannot censor the media from publishing truthful information in the public interest, even if it's classified.
Thus, had the government tried to stop WikiLeaks in court, they would have failed. But they didn't have to. Instead, two individuals, Sen. Joe Lieberman and Rep. Peter King simply took it upon themselves to defund the truth. They successfully pressured Visa, Mastercard, Bank of America, and PayPal to stop processing donations to WikiLeaks, costing it 95 percent of its funding overnight.
When the private financial embargo was imposed on WikiLeaks, it was an act of censorship on them and on everyone who wanted to support their work. But against this extrajudicial sanction, there was no avenue of appeal. Even though Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced that there were no legal grounds to blacklist WikiLeaks, that didn't matter. Amazon, Visa, Mastercard, Bank of America, and PayPal are private corporations. They can do as they please. The closest thing they have to a Bill of Rights is a terms of service agreement no one reads.
While the Internet has broadly enabled those who would increase institutional transparency and accountability, responsible revelation requires more than the ability to dump documents online. Editorial processes are required to separate signal from noise and to expose the guilty without endangering the innocent. It takes actual journalism and actual journalism takes money.
We believe that not only does WikiLeaks need to survive, it must be joined by an array of others like it, edited transparency media that have so far failed to emerge, self-censoring victims of the chilling effects of the WikiLeaks blockade. Moreover, the watchdogs that do exist struggle for backers as brave as they are. The old media fear the fears of their advertisers. The new ones often depend on a few large foundations or donors, who, being from the elite themselves, may hesitate to part its curtains.
The answer, we believe, is to crowd-fund transparency, making it easy and relatively anonymous for the public to support the best watchdogs in one place, setting up a kind of United Way for the Truth.
To that end, a group of us that also includes Glenn Greenwald, Xeni Jardin, John Cusack, and Laura Poitras are launching The Freedom of the Press Foundation. Our goal is to collect deductible donations for a changing suite of scrappy public-interest organizations -- both new and existing -- focused on exposing mismanagement, cruelty, corruption, repression, and criminality in our increasingly opaque institutions.
Our first bundle of beneficiaries -- in addition to the still-beleaguered WikiLeaks -- will include MuckRock News, which streamlines Freedom of Information Act requests so that ordinary people can file them easily, The National Security Archive, which has been prying open the black boxes of classified information for years, and The UpTake, a combative Midwestern collective of citizen journalists focused on bringing transparency to state and local governments.
We hope our financial support and technical assistance will inspire a host of other edited and secure conduits for anonymously-provided documents that the citizens whose lives and liberties they impact have a natural right to see.
These channels are needed more than ever. In 2011, the U.S. Government classified over 92 million documents, four times more than were classified under George Bush in 2008. Moreover, President Obama's Justice Department has prosecuted more whistleblowers under the Espionage Act than all the previous administrations combined.
When a government becomes invisible, it becomes unaccountable. To expose its lies, errors, and illegal acts is not treason, it is a moral responsibility. Leaks become the lifeblood of the Republic.
Whatever one's opinion of WikiLeaks, every American should be offended that two elected officials, merely by putting pressure on corporations, could financially strangle necessary expression without ever going to court. What happened to WikiLeaks is completely unacceptable in a democracy that values free speech and due process.
We intend to assure that it can't happen again.
By Robert Scheer
Keep an American soldier locked up naked in a cage and driven half mad while deprived of all basic rights, and you will be instantly condemned as a barbaric terrorist. Unless the jailer is an authorized agent of the U.S. government, in which case even treatment approaching torture will go largely unnoticed. Certainly if a likable constitutional law professor happens to be president, all such assaults on human dignity will easily pass muster.
After being interned like some wild animal in that cage in Kuwait, Pfc. Bradley Manning was transferred to the Quantico, Va., Marine base and further subjected to conditions that his lawyer termed “criminal.” Not all that far from the White House, and yet our ever-enlightened president seems not to have noticed that this soldier, whose alleged criminal offense is that he attempted to inform the public of crimes committed in its name, has been held in an environment clearly created to destroy his very sense of self.
As Manning’s lawyer, David Coombs, a lieutenant colonel in the Army reserves and a veteran of 12 years of active duty, put it: “Brad’s treatment at Quantico will forever be etched into our nation’s history as a disgraceful moment in time.” Coombs warned that the most serious charge facing his client, “aiding the enemy,” is a “scary proposition” designed to “silence a lot of critics of our government.”
Who is that “enemy” other than the public that came to be informed about the true nature of the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan by news reports based on a trove of documents allegedly made available to the WikiLeaks website by Manning? The documents were labeled secret, but as the many important news reports based on them revealed, they contained information that an enlightened public had a need and right to know.
Yet for too many in the mainstream media, led by the example of the editors of The New York Times, the recent military courtroom proceedings where Manning’s lawyer finally got to document the government’s attempt to destroy his client were largely a nonevent. Conveniently so, given that the Times and other major news outlets that were thrilled to exploit the information that Manning uncovered are deeply afraid of being associated with the brave whistle-blower himself.
While the Times is to be applauded for running Sullivan’s devastating critique, the replies from individual editors responsible were lame. Asked why the paper didn’t send a reporter to cover this rare opportunity to learn Manning’s side of the story, Times Washington bureau chief David Leonhardt said, “We’ve covered him and will continue to do so. But as with any other legal case, we won’t cover every single proceeding.”
Really? This is hardly just another legal case, for it goes to the heart of the First Amendment freedoms on which the Times has relied so heavily during its storied history.
If the public had a right to know the information that Manning allegedly revealed, as the Times demonstrated by publishing important stories featuring it, then the source should be honored rather than scorned. As Sullivan wrote: “To its credit, The Times published article after article based on the very information that Private Manning provided to WikiLeaks, just as it had published the Pentagon Papers that Mr. [Daniel] Ellsberg leaked during the Vietnam War.”
Manning is in the same position as was Ellsberg, who four decades ago leaked to The New York Times details of government lies and crimes in Vietnam. Both men had access to material classified as secret, but both believed they had an obligation to puncture the veil of government secrecy when it was employed to deceive the public.
What is protected in the First Amendment is not the right of commercial enterprises to exploit the news for profit, but rather of citizens to become informed. That requires the courage of heroic sources, including Bradley Manning.
Army Pfc. Bradley Manning’s defense attorney argued Tuesday that the soldier’s former jailers at the Marine Corps brig at Quantico mistreated him to protect themselves from recriminations over their high-profile prisoner.
David E. Coombs said Quantico officials ignored the opinions of multiple health professionals that Manning was not a risk to himself or others and kept him isolated in a tiny cell 23 hours a day.
“They were more concerned with how [their actions] would appear to the Marine Corps and Quantico than if Manning was at risk of self harm,” Coombs said in his closing arguments in the pretrial hearing at Fort Meade.
Army Maj. Ashden Fein, one of the prosecutors, countered in his closing argument that the guards only intended to protect Manning. “Yes, they were cautious,” Fein said. “They wanted to get him to trial.”
Manning, 24, is accused of giving hundreds of thousands of classified military and diplomatic documents to WikiLeaks, an anti-secrecy organization. He faces life in prison if convicted of the most serious of the 22 charges against him, including aiding the enemy.
At Quantico, Manning was kept on either suicide watch or injury-prevention status for months. Every night for two months, he was stripped of his clothing and had to sleep in a gown known as a “suicide smock.”
Manning was monitored 24 hours a day and Quantico officials testified that he danced in his cell and played peekaboo with them, behavior they interpreted as unbalanced.
“The fact that Manning’s spirit is not broken is amazing,” Coombs said. “Being treated as a zoo animal for that period of time has to weigh heavily on the psyche.”
Coombs contends that Manning’s confinement was so harsh that the charges should be dropped or he should be given extra credit at sentencing.
After his arrest, Manning was called a traitor by some members of Congress and a hero by activists. Coombs said senior military officers tracked his confinement because they feared bad publicity.
“If the brig could have put him in a straitjacket and padded room, they would have done that,” he said.
The attorney said Marine Lt. Gen. George J. Flynn monitored Manning’s case from the outset and sent an e-mail to the brig commander saying that Manning was “a prime candidate to take his own life.”
Manning listened quietly, occasionally reviewing paperwork. He testified earlier that he considered suicide after he was arrested in May 2010 in Iraq. But he said he was not a danger to himself or anyone after those early days. Multiple health professionals agreed, but their opinions were set aside by the brig commander.
In arguing the military’s case, Fein said there was no evidence that Manning was subjected to extreme treatment. He reviewed the testimony of 14 guards, pointing out that all of them said their job was to protect Manning.
Fein acknowledged that Manning was held improperly on suicide watch on two occasions for a total of seven days. He said Manning should receive credit for those days at sentencing.
Manning is now being held at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas. His next hearing is set for mid-January, and the court-martial will begin in mid-March.
History will judge harshly the US military's mistreatment of the alleged WikiLeaks whistleblower, who turns 25 this week
Pfc Bradley Manning was finally allowed to speak publicly, in his own defense, in a preliminary hearing of his court martial. Manning is the alleged source of the largest intelligence leak in US history. He was an intelligence analyst in the US army, with top secret clearance, deployed in Iraq. In April 2010, the whistleblower website WikiLeaks released a US military video of an Apache helicopter in Baghdad killing a dozen civilians below, including two Reuters employees, a videographer and his driver.
One month after the video was released, Manning was arrested in Iraq, charged with leaking the video and hundreds of thousands more documents. Thus began his ordeal of cruel, degrading imprisonment in solitary confinement that many claim was torture, from his detention in Kuwait to months in the military brig in Quantico, Virginia. Facing global condemnation, the US military transferred Manning to less abusive detention at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
As he now faces 22 counts in a court martial that could land him in prison for the rest of his life, his lawyer argued in court that the case should be thrown out, based on his unlawful pre-trial punishment.
Veteran constitutional attorney Michael Ratner was in the courtroom at Fort Meade, Maryland, that day Manning took the stand. He described the scene:
"It was one of the most dramatic courtroom scenes I've ever been in … When Bradley opened his mouth, he was not nervous. The testimony was incredibly moving, an emotional rollercoaster for all of us, but particularly, obviously, for Bradley and what he went through. But it was so horrible what happened to him over a two-year period. He described it in great detail in a way that was articulate, smart, self-aware."
Ratner said Manning described being kept in a cage in Kuwait:
"There were two cages. He said they were like animal cages. They were in a tent alone, just these two cages, side by side. One of them had whatever possessions he may have had; one of them, he was in, with a little bed for a rack and a toilet, dark, in this cage for almost two months."
Ratner quoted Manning from his testimony, recalling his words:
"For me, I stopped keeping track. I didn't know whether night was day or day was night. And my world became very, very small. It became these cages."
Ratner added: "It almost destroyed him."
After Kuwait, Manning was shipped to a brig in Quantico. Manning's civilian defense attorney, David Coombs, said earlier this month:
"Brad's treatment at Quantico will forever be etched, I believe, in our nation's history, as a disgraceful moment in time. Not only was it stupid and counterproductive. It was criminal."
The United Nations special rapporteur on torture, Juan Mendez, attempted to visit Manning, but then refused when the military said it could surveil and record the visit. He reported:
"Solitary confinement is a harsh measure which may cause serious psychological and physiological adverse effects on individuals regardless of their specific conditions."
Manning's cruel treatment was described by officials as necessary, as he was a suicide risk. Yet navy Capt William Hocter, a forensic psychiatrist at Quantico, said he was no such risk, but was ignored. Hocter testified:
"I had been a senior medical officer for 24 years at the time, and I had never experienced anything like this. It was clear to me they had made up their mind on a certain cause of action, and my recommendations had no impact."
This first phase of the court martial, which Coombs calls "the unlawful pretrial punishment motion phase", considered a defense motion to throw out the entire case. While that is unlikely, observers say, the defense asked, as an alternative, that the court consider crediting Manning with 10 days' reduction from any eventual sentence for each day he spent suffering cruel and degrading punishment in Kuwait and Quantico, which could, in theory, trim six years from his prison time.
Bradley Manning is charged with releasing the WikiLeaks trove of documents, which included the Baghdad massacre video, two separate, massive tranches of documents relating to US military records from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and, perhaps most importantly, the huge release of more than 250,000 US State Department cables, dubbed "Cablegate". In an August 2010 assessment, then Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said the document release "has not revealed any sensitive intelligence sources and methods compromised by the disclosure."
Manning has offered to plead guilty to releasing the documents, but not to the more serious charges of espionage or aiding the enemy.
Manning turns 25, in prison, 17 December, which is also the second anniversary of the day a young Tunisian set himself on fire in protest of his country's corrupt government, sparking the Arab Spring. A year ago, as Time magazine named the protester as the "Person of the Year", legendary Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg offered praise that rings true today:
"The Time magazine cover gives protester, an anonymous protester, as 'Person of the Year,' but it is possible to put a face and a name to that picture of 'Person of the Year.' And the American face I would put on that is Private Bradley Manning."
• Denis Moynihan contributed research to this column.
Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, in the film “We Steal Secrets.” Several moviemakers are eager to tell his story.
LOS ANGELES — At the end of Alex Gibney’s not-quite-finished documentary “We Steal Secrets” — about Julian Assange and WikiLeaks — is a screen crawl describing the fate of Pfc. Bradley Manning, the Army intelligence analyst who now faces trial for the release of confidential military and diplomatic documents.
Julian Assange in the film “We Steal Secrets.”
“He was found guilty of TK, and sentenced to TK years” in prison, the line says.
“TK” is journalistic shorthand for facts yet to come. The syntax suggests that Mr. Gibney doesn’t see much ahead.
But it is Private Manning, even more than Mr. Assange, who has the breakout role in this first of several Hollywood films about the little-known people who grew larger than the most powerful of governments by using the Internet to broadcast their secrets.
Set for debut at the Sundance Film Festival next month, “We Steal Secrets” is a collaboration between the producer Marc Shmuger, who until 2009 was a chairman of Universal Pictures, and Mr. Gibney, a prolific documentarian who won an Oscar for “Taxi to the Dark Side.”
After leaving Universal, Mr. Shmuger started a film company, Global Produce. But he spent much of 2010 transfixed by reports about Mr. Assange, an Australian computer hacker who stepped into the limelight as a self-appointed czar of government and corporate transparency — and ultimately as a fugitive from authorities in Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning related to allegations of sexual assault. He is avoiding extradition from Britain by claiming asylum in Ecuador’s embassy in London.
Mr. Shmuger found an e-mail address for Mr. Gibney, whom he did not know, and proposed a documentary. Mr. Gibney, who had just finished “Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer” and always has prospective projects to pursue, recalls trying to avoid adding this one.
“It couldn’t have come at a worse time,” said Mr. Gibney, who spoke from New York this week in a joint interview with Mr. Shmuger, who is based here.
But Mr. Gibney, like Mr. Shmuger, was soon captivated by the unlikely characters and bizarre narrative that are promising to make the WikiLeaks story the subject of not one movie, but many.
“Underground: The Julian Assange Story,” an Australian television film about the young Mr. Assange, was screened at the Toronto International Film Festival in September.
In January, DreamWorks Studios and Participant Media plan to begin shooting a dramatic feature film to be directed by Bill Condon. It will be based on a script by Josh Singer and two books: “Inside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the World’s Most Dangerous Website,” by a former Assange colleague, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, and “WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War on Secrecy,” by David Leigh and Luke Harding.
HBO also had plans for an Assange movie, but Nancy Lesser, a spokeswoman for the channel, said the film has been delayed. Mark Boal, the writer and a producer of “Zero Dark Thirty,” continues to work on a possible Assange drama based on a New York Times Magazine article, “The Boy Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest” by Bill Keller.
In an e-mail, Mr. Keller, a former executive editor of The Times, said Mr. Boal recently asked whether he had any interest in writing the script for that one. “I told him I thought screenplays were outside my skill set,” Mr. Keller said.
“We Steal Secrets” has moved more quickly than the dramas, threatening at times to outpace events. Mr. Manning’s trial, for instance, had been expected by some to occur this year. But it has been delayed — perhaps to keep it out of the presidential campaign, Mr. Gibney suggested this week — and is now scheduled for March.
Focus Features expects to release “We Steal Secrets” through its FocusWorld label in the months after Sundance, which runs Jan. 17 to 27. Mr. Shmuger’s company will have another film, a comedy called “The Spectacular Now,” at the festival.
Running more than two hours, the documentary is a relatively full retelling of Mr. Assange’s story. It ranges from his youthful hacking into a network connected to an American rocket launch, through an arrest for entering government and business computers in the 1990s, to his rise as the overlord of WikiLeaks, the online organization that helped whistle-blowers post documents while remaining anonymous.
The film promises to break ground, particularly with its deep exploration of the sex case in Sweden. Mr. Gibney has asked to avoid spoilers on this point, but his narrative and supporting research are not friendly toward those who would see Sweden’s pursuit of Mr. Assange as cover for a supposed American agenda to prosecute or smear him.
Mr. Gibney tells on-screen of rejecting Mr. Assange’s demands for money in exchange for an interview and says that the market rate for an interview was $1 million. Instead, that became an example of what one figure in the film calls “noble cause corruption” — a tendency to excuse transgressions supposedly done in the service of good. (A query was sent this week to an Assange representative for comment on this article, but Mr. Assange did not respond.)
But the film also takes issue with what Mr. Gibney considers shabby treatment of Mr. Assange by The Times, which cooperated with him in publishing many WikiLeaks revelations, but later described him with what Mr. Gibney called “derision.”
Mr. Keller, in his e-mail, said “being a source doesn’t buy you reverent treatment as a subject.” Mr. Assange’s release of secret documents, Mr. Keller added, is “entitled to the same First Amendment protection as the stories we wrote.”
Still, it is Private Manning who steals the spotlight in “We Steal Secrets.” Relying in part on information from the legal proceeding against him, the film traces his loneliness and confusion over sexual identity, and his unease with conduct and incidents he saw described in secret documents. The film also deals with communications he had with a cyberfriend who ultimately betrayed him to authorities.
Though widely condemned for perhaps exposing both civilians and government operatives around the world to mortal danger, Private Manning, in Mr. Gibney’s view, deserves empathy.
“We explore him as a human being far more fully than anyone else has,” he said this week.
In fact, Mr. Shmuger and Mr. Gibney have acquired rights to the book “Private: Bradley Manning, WikiLeaks, and the Biggest Exposure of Official Secrets in American History,” by Denver Nicks, and are hoping to give Mr. Manning a full-blown dramatic film of his own.
“We’re looking for a screenwriter,” said Mr. Shmuger.
This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
Correction: December 20, 2012
An earlier version of this article referred imprecisely to what Alex Gibney says in “We Steal Secrets” about Julian Assange’s demands for money in exchange for collaborating on the film. While he says that he rejected the demands, and that the market rate for an interview was $1 million, he does not specifically say that he rejected a demand from Mr. Assange for a $1 million fee for an interview. An earlier version of the photographs with this review, using information from a publicist, carried erroneous credits. They are by Focus World, not Focus Features.
An Obama official seems to justify an Iranian attack on the US; Panetta channels Cheney; Tom Friedman writes from expertise
There are several brief matters worth noting today:
1) It seems that a leading Obama official just endorsed the right of Iran to attack the US and Israel:
The Washington Post, today ("US official says cyberattacks can trigger self-defense rule"):
"Cyberattacks can amount to armed attacks triggering the right of self-defense and are subject to international laws of war, the State Department's top lawyer said Tuesday."Spelling out the US government's position on the rules governing cyberwarfare, Harold Koh, the department's legal adviser, said a cyber-operation that results in death, injury or significant destruction would probably be seen as a use of force in violation of international law."In the United States' view, any illegal use of force potentially triggers the right of national self-defense, Koh said …"In our view, there is no threshold for a use of deadly force to qualify as an 'armed attack' that may warrant a forcible response,' he said … Koh also said that in responding to an attack, an action need not be taken in cyberspace, but it must be a necessary action and one that is proportionate, avoiding harm to civilians."
"Cyberattacks can amount to armed attacks triggering the right of self-defense and are subject to international laws of war, the State Department's top lawyer said Tuesday.
"Spelling out the US government's position on the rules governing cyberwarfare, Harold Koh, the department's legal adviser, said a cyber-operation that results in death, injury or significant destruction would probably be seen as a use of force in violation of international law.
"In the United States' view, any illegal use of force potentially triggers the right of national self-defense, Koh said …
"In our view, there is no threshold for a use of deadly force to qualify as an 'armed attack' that may warrant a forcible response,' he said … Koh also said that in responding to an attack, an action need not be taken in cyberspace, but it must be a necessary action and one that is proportionate, avoiding harm to civilians."
New York Times, 1 June 2012 ("Obama Order Sped Up Wave of Cyberattacks Against Iran"):
"From his first months in office, President Obama secretly ordered increasingly sophisticated attacks on the computer systems that run Iran's main nuclear enrichment facilities, significantly expanding America's first sustained use of cyberweapons, according to participants in the program."Mr Obama decided to accelerate the attacks – begun in the Bush administration and code-named Olympic Games – even after an element of the program accidentally became public in the summer of 2010 because of a programming error that allowed it to escape Iran's Natanz plant and sent it around the world on the Internet. Computer security experts who began studying the worm, which had been developed by the United States and Israel, gave it a name: Stuxnet …"It appears to be the first time the United States has repeatedly used cyberweapons to cripple another country's infrastructure, achieving, with computer code, what until then could be accomplished only by bombing a country or sending in agents to plant explosives."Mr Obama, according to participants in the many Situation Room meetings on Olympic Games, was acutely aware that with every attack he was pushing the United States into new territory, much as his predecessors had with the first use of atomic weapons in the 1940s, of intercontinental missiles in the 1950s and of drones in the past decade."
"From his first months in office, President Obama secretly ordered increasingly sophisticated attacks on the computer systems that run Iran's main nuclear enrichment facilities, significantly expanding America's first sustained use of cyberweapons, according to participants in the program.
"Mr Obama decided to accelerate the attacks – begun in the Bush administration and code-named Olympic Games – even after an element of the program accidentally became public in the summer of 2010 because of a programming error that allowed it to escape Iran's Natanz plant and sent it around the world on the Internet. Computer security experts who began studying the worm, which had been developed by the United States and Israel, gave it a name: Stuxnet …
"It appears to be the first time the United States has repeatedly used cyberweapons to cripple another country's infrastructure, achieving, with computer code, what until then could be accomplished only by bombing a country or sending in agents to plant explosives.
"Mr Obama, according to participants in the many Situation Room meetings on Olympic Games, was acutely aware that with every attack he was pushing the United States into new territory, much as his predecessors had with the first use of atomic weapons in the 1940s, of intercontinental missiles in the 1950s and of drones in the past decade."
Of course, Koh's argument would only constitute a defense of Iran's right to attack the US if the rights claimed by the US applied to other countries, so there's nothing to worry about.http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/19/cyberwar-last-gasps-hate-speech
KPFA Radio 94.1 FM and Courage to Resist presentSaluting Bradley Manning: with Daniel Ellsberg & Patricia Ellsberg & Kevin GosztolaTruth & Consequences: The U.S. vs Bradley Manning $12 advance tickets: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/306699 :: 800-838-3006 or Pegasus Books (3 locations), Marcus Books, Mrs. Dalloway’s, Moe’s Books, Walden Pond, DIESEL, A Bookstore, and Modern Times ($15 door) Information: http://www.kpfa.org/events KPFA benefitNote: This is not only a book event, but… Show more
Published: 26 April, 2011, 00:54 Edited: 21 December, 2011, 18:53
TAGS: Crime, Military, Obama, Law, USA, WikiLeaks
President Barack Obama in the Situation Room of the White House. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
In a conversation about alleged WikiLeaks leaker US President Barack Obama commented on Pfc. Bradley Manning saying, “He broke the law.”
The words from Obama’s mouth come as Manning is held in prison awaiting further charges and a military trial. Manning has entered no official plea and no court proceedings have begun. Yet, the US president dubbed him guilty of breaking the law.
Many argue no truly fair or impartial trial is even possible at this point. Some hold there would never be a fair trial since the media had already convicted manning in the court of public opinion. Now that the Military’s commander-in-chief has spoke on the matter is even more unlikely the military trial will be fair and impartial.
Military officers on a potential jury now know that their commander and chief believes Manning to be guilty. To find otherwise would amount to undermining his view.
Kevin Zeese, an attorney, the director of Come Home America and an advisor to the Bradley Manning Support Network explained this directly obstructs the notion of innocent until proven guilty.
“That was a very clear error by President Obama,” he remarked. “This makes it very hard for Private Manning to have a fair trial in the military.”
Many people the world over are actively supporting Manning and protesting his detention and mistreatment at the hands of the US Department of Defense.
It is highly unlikely, Zeese argued, that a military officer or enlistee would site on a jury and pas a verdict that is in opposition to the words of the President. It could possibly be bad for their future careers. This eliminates any possibility of a fair trial.
Manning, if guilty, merely released low-level secrets to the American public who had a right to know what their government was doing, he said. He did not sell or trade dangerous secretes to foreign governments.
“That’s not a traitor to me, that’s a patriot,” said Zeese.
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