If you enjoy the content you find here, please consider donating to support our continued efforts to bring you the best news and opinion articles we can. We hope you like the recent update to NWCitizen, and look forward to bringing you more insight into local politics and issues in 2017.

Support NWCitizen Not Now

Learn the Facts from Foreign Media

By On

Virtually all the discussions I've had about the WikiLeaks issue have quickly gone off the rails if the other person thinks the leaks are wrong, or a crime. The subject gets turned to accusations and pop psychoanalysis about what kind of a person Julian Assange is. The suggestions are all insulting.

Accusations of rape are quick off the lips of those who are incensed or opposed to the leak of U.S. diplomatic cables. Ahh, the bastard is a rapist. So there. What a jerk. Those who do not like the leaks seem to think their best argument against them is to discredit Julian. And for days our American media told us how the police were closing in on him - how the net was tightening.

So, how about some facts that change all that and actually move us toward the truth. My main source is The Guardian Unlimited of London, one of the most respected newspapers in the world.

Julian has been in S.E. England for the past couple weeks or more - and the police knew exactly where he was staying. The day Sweden leveled the rape charges, Julian's lawyers let the police know where he was and that he would cooperate with them. But our American media hyped this story as if he was a fugitive, hiding and on the run.

There is a lot of suspicion that the CIA, and U.S. government in general, is pressuring Sweden to get Julian in any way it can. The women who are accusing him of rape actually invited him home and bedded him more than once. One of the women has ties to the CIA from when she worked in the Swedish Embassy in Washington D.C. Their accusation has to do with their thinking that he cut his condoms so they would rip during sex. Does this sound like the rape you thought it was before starting this article??

I've linked to one article in the Guardian today. It basically tells you the same information I've written above. Perhaps you might browse some of the other Guardian articles and learn more facts - facts our American news media have either left out of their stories or have twisted to make it seem Julian is a felon. Read the Guardian articles for yourself and learn not only the truth about Julian, but of how badly we are informed by our American news media. Just as the leaked cables show our government doing things that outrage us, so too, reading foreign news media shows our American media is in bed with our government and no doubt taking directions from it. But then, we learned that during the Iraq war.

Related Links

About John Servais

Citizen Journalist and Editor • Fairhaven, Washington USA • Member since Feb 26, 2008

John started Northwest Citizen in 1995 to inform fellow citizens of serious local political issues that the Bellingham Herald was ignoring. With the help of donors from the beginning, he has [...]

Comments by Readers

Todd Granger

Dec 08, 2010

“OK, the rule is, you can make love to an elephant if you want to, but if you do you can’t cover the circus.”

N.Y. Times Editor Abe Rosenthal.

Nixon’s Best Man, in another older circus at the Pentagon.

Read More...

David Camp

Dec 08, 2010

Despite the corporate-controlled media’s lock-step parroting of the government’s BS, there are still some beacons of honest and factual reporting in these here United States.

Here’s a link to Glenn Greenwald’s most recent post in Salon.com on the subject of Wikileaks:

http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/12/08/wikileaks/index.html

Thanks to a free and neutral internet, we can clearly see the intellectual bankruptcy and corruption of the corporate media. They are unworthy of their oligopolistic control of the public airwaves. It is not surprising that they are chipping away at net neutrality - when Comcast controls NBC Universal, how long will it take them to try and lock out or slow down competing providers? I suppose it will be an improvement over GE’s control - since GE’s main source of profit is the military, it’s controlled media outlet was one of the main Iraq war promoters. Cross-branding, and product placement means profit on a grand scale! Bombs away!

Read More...

Ham Hayes

Dec 08, 2010

So we are now in the first open cyber-war.  I wonder what the wikileakers really expect the outcome will be.  In the short term transgressions of some governments and corporations will certainly continue to be exposed, at least for a while.  But for the longer term will the world’s governments fall or will they react in a manner that follows Chinese censorship and control of the internet?

I expect that any hope for net neutrality will be dead shortly.  I also expect that the future form of the internet will be a lot far less open. 

Anybody here really know whether the cure will be worse than the disease?

Read More...

John Servais

Dec 08, 2010

Ham, I’ll take your bait.

The event in history that is similar to this was the invention of moveable type printing about 1450 by Gutenberg.  Printing presses spread around Europe quickly and the ability to read and to buy books also spread rapidly.  Until then, the control of what books were hand made and who owned these books was easily controlled by the powers of the time - the Catholic Church and some royalty.  The spread of printing led to the Church and Kings trying for a couple hundred years to continue to control what books were printed and who owned them.  It did not work.  The genie was out of the bottle.

As people read the bible for themselves, they got ideas about religion and we had the reformation.  Books on non religious subjects were printed.  We had the Renaissance.  People started writing new books.  We had the Age of Enlightenment.  And the spread of knowledge.  And the Catholic Church lost its iron grip on books and reading in Europe.  The rest is history.

Until now, the spread of information could still be controlled by limiting the spread of books and newspapers.  News media have been compromised by governments since the first ones in England 300 years ago.  If a person had knowledge, they still had a huge challenge to get this information to others.  You have information about corruption in city hall?  Good luck getting your local newspaper to print it.  The powers that were could still control the spread of information.

Enter the Internet.  We can now - from one website - instantly spread information all over the world.  Governments can only control this by trying to lock up the Internet - and that will cripple commerce.  While I think we will see seemingly mighty efforts to “control” the Internet, as Ham suggests is one of two options, we will see those efforts largely fail.  The Internet is here to stay because everyone likes it.

I don’t think we will see governments fail.  The future is unknown and most anything can or will happen.  But just as the spread of reading did not cause the end of Western Civilization but rather its transformation to something else, so too the Internet will transform.  With Wikileaks, the Internet is ending it’s phase as a novelty and becoming a serious part of the world culture.  Of course we will see new laws governing how it is used - but it will continue to be a game changer.

Read More...

John Lesow

Dec 09, 2010

John, the circumstances regarding Assange’s alleged “rape” were covered in extensive, time-line detail on FOX TV’s Glen Beck program earlier this week.

It is sad, but predictable, that few who read this blog noticed.

Suggest you offer a link to FOX News. It seems like a fair and balanced approach to present an alternative point of view.  Particularly since that alternative is rapidly becoming mainstream, even in lonely liberal outposts like Bellingham.

Read More...

Tip Johnson

Dec 09, 2010

Plenty of governments are in danger of failing, but not because someone airs their dirty undies.  Indeed, there are rumblings that another federal bailout may be necessary to support our crippled state governments.

The dirty undies are not entirely unrelated to the problem, but the root cause is fiscal policy.  Corporations now largely control who may run and be seated in public office.  The corporate agenda, carefully followed by both parties, has increasingly shifted the tax burden to the poor.  Meanwhile, the effect of corporate enterprise has steadily made the poor even poorer, systematically concentrating wealth to a few - a few with the political power to avoid paying taxes.

This recession has adequately demonstrated that sales taxes cannot support basic government services through a downturn.  When the poor can’t buy, tax revenues decline. Yet here, even a plebiscite rejected alternatives geared toward tapping the greater concentration of wealth.

Governments will fail, but they will first fail to provide basic services to our most needy.  Our wealthiest citizens require very little government and the last features to go will be those that make it possible for them to accrue and maintain their wealth.

This is a basic element of the bilateral corporate strategy for gradually cramming our middle class into wage parity with China.  It’s called Free Trade.

Read More...

Todd Granger

Dec 09, 2010

And a new Peace Prize canidate, for another Community Organizer?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2010/dec/09/julian-assange-nobel-peace-prize

Read More...

Dick Conoboy

Dec 09, 2010

On Dec 2 ,the article at the URL below appeared regarding the charges against Assange.  A friend of mine here in Bellingham is convinced that Assange suffers from Aspergers syndrome. I agree. Given the characteristics of Aspergers, it might not be surprising that the women he has “bedded” may have found his actions and reactions strange, even abnormal and bizarre. This could account for their (his accusers) reactions and the charges against him. 

http://www.aolnews.com/world/article/sex-by-surprise-at-heart-of-julian-assange-criminal-probe/19741444

Read More...

Todd Granger

Dec 09, 2010

And Dick,

A “red notice” from Interpol? The laughing stock of the World!

On 2 July 2010, former Interpol President Jackie Selebi was found guilty of corruption by the South African High Court in Johannesburg for accepting bribes worth $156,000 from a drug trafficker. After being charged in January 2008, Selebi resigned as president of Interpol and was put on extended leave as National Police Commissioner of South Africa, and sentenced to 15 years imprisonment on 3 August 2010.

Read More...

John Servais

Dec 09, 2010

John - I’ve watched Glenn Beck’s piece on Julian Assange.  Interestingly, Glenn Beck cites as his sources the “British newspapers” - thus endorsing my link to The Guardian, which has provided excellent coverage.  Glenn does a good job of pointing out how Julian has not been accused of any crime yet, that the implied crime has nothing to do with Wikileaks and that the description of the sexual crime is pretty weird and unique to Sweden.  And that is what he learned from the British press. 

The right side column has no links to any of the TV sites - not to MSNBC, CNN, FOX nor CBS, NBC or ABC.  However, Drudge has been linked for years as he is a pure play web source from the right and, although liberals hate him, he does often lead most media with breaking news.  In general, the links do reflect my preferences but the focus is less on conservative or liberal and more on good sources of information.

Read More...

Paul deArmond

Dec 09, 2010

Ham, this isn’t cyberwar, it’s netwar.

The “net” in netwar means social network, not internet.  Netwars don’t require computers, but computers can enhance social networks by vastly lowering the cost of communication.

The world’s first full-scale modern netwar was the Zapatistas.  The WTO protests were the breaking wave in the US.

All social movements use social networks as the primary form of organization.  Ronfeldt has theorized that networked social movements are now the primary means of societal evolution.


/stuffy pedantic

The wikileaks and anonymous actions, though linked are separate.  Both are provocations meant to push the establishment into reaction.  It seems to be working.  Expect the overreaction to get really stupid as the contradictions become more pronounced.

Also expect the pro-wikileaks networks to start fissioning as a form of competition for results.  It’s like forced evolution: the ones that get results will also harvest more attention and resources.

I’m watching the situation evolve and it’s like being inside a 1970’s science fiction novel like Agent of Chaos or Shockwave Rider (which is arguably the first cyberpunk/hacker novel.)

Read More...

Ryan M. Ferris

Dec 10, 2010

How is this possibly not a cyber-war? These are the LOIC downloads from SourceForge (Windows binary!) by day for the last week as of 2:00PM PST December 10th:

2010-12-10     15,107
2010-12-09   27,686
2010-12-08   10,163
2010-12-07   3,369
2010-12-06   703
2010-12-05   306
2010-12-04   691
2010-12-03   390

When was the last time you saw mass groups of computers users signing up for a botnet and successfully attacking Visa, MasterCard, PayPal, Swiss Banking System, Sarah Palin, whatever enemy disses Asange…After struggling with the attacks, Paypal caved in yesterday and released Wikileaks funds. They won’t restart the Wikileaks account yet. Doubtless more pressure will be applied to the global financial system until it heels to the cyber-will of the masses of angry activists and hackers and releases Assange.

Our country is great at starting foreign wars, but we don’t have a very good track record at winning them or imagining their ultimate consequences.  This time, we assaulted one of the world’s leading anti-heroes - a dedicated hacker with a conscience and desire to see our genocidal wars against people of color in the Mid-East come to a halt.

Can you imagine how empty U.S. threats of arrest under the “Espionage Act” must seem to hackers in Nigeria, Iran, Iraq, Russia, China, North Korea, Pakistan, Afghanistan, probably every country in South America, maybe every other country in Africa, maybe half of Europe. At the very best the decision to arrest Asange and stop Wikileaks provides cover for every anti-US foreign nationalist group and intelligence asset to test destroying America’s Christmas retail economy. At the worst, it now drafts in as cyber-soldiers every pissed off activist from Bellingham to Burma.

What were Obama, Gates, thinking? They started a war at Christmas time they can’t win without big financial losses. Were they thinking that this would be a good test of the new DoD cyber-command?  Were they thinking we have to stop these cables being released at all costs? What is going on here?

Read More...

John Lesow

Dec 10, 2010

John, the title—and intent—of your post is that one can learn the “facts” from foreign media.  You do not seem to have much faith in American bureaus.  FOX reported the Assange rape story in some detail.  FOX has the largest viewership of any cable channel. More than CNN, MSNBC and NPR combined. FOX
is a domestic—as opposed to foreign—media outlet.  That was my point. 

And yes, you should link to FOX.  And CNN and MSNBC.  And the “major” networks;  CBS, NBC, and ABC,even though their market share is dwindling and they could hardly be considered as “major” as they once were…

Link to the National Post—the best newspaper in North America and one of the few print papers that is actually increasing in circulation. They have some of the best writers in the business. Check it out and judge for yourself.

I appreciate the fact that Glen Beck drew from sources like the Guardian to report the “facts” on Julian Assange.  I suggest it shows that FOX producers are more likely, and willing, to cast their informational net over a wider area than competing news bureaus.

Read More...

David Camp

Dec 15, 2010

Ryan - you ask “what is going on here?” - why would our government, friend of freedom and hater of tyranny all over the world, be actively suppressing, punishing, and attempting to kill the epitomy of free expression and exchange of information??

I’ve learned the hard way that what people do is a better indicator of what they are than what they say.

Perhaps the reason that totalitarian Communist China, totalitarian gangster RUssia, and “free democratic” United States are all allied against their copmmon enemy Wikileaks is that the USA may not be what it claims? Perhaps the federal government has more in common with that of China than it admits?

Fascism is a slow creeping thing, like most fascists. It doesn’t like the light. Keep the light on these bastards and they’ll shrivel up and die.

Read More...