December 9, 2010
U.S. officials reportedly are hoping to capitalize on the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in London this week by having him extradited to this country for criminal prosecution. Based on what is known about WikiLeaks' release of hundreds of thousands of confidential documents, that would be a mistake. Assange was jailed in Britain on Tuesday in connection with charges of sexual assault filed against him in Sweden. U.S. officials, meanwhile, are clearly eager to prosecute him for the leaks, if not under the 1917 Espionage Act then for other criminal charges, including receiving stolen property.
May 23, 2013 |
"We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks" may be a documentary, but director Alex Gibney gives the film the feel of a propulsive espionage techno-thriller played out in the real world. The movie is in some sense two films in one. It's partly a study of the well-known Julian Assange, who captured the world's attention when his WikiLeaks website made volumes of sensitive U.S. government material available online, sparking a firestorm of controversy over secrecy and freedom of information in the digital age. But viewers may be less familiar with Bradley Manning, the low-level Army intelligence analyst who provided Assange with his most daring cache of documents and is soon to begin a court-martial stemming from those activities.
December 12, 2010 |
When Julian Assange talks about transparency and our right to know about our government, he has at least a fighting chance of winning over a skeptical public. He stakes out a difficult but righteous position: that the media deserve special latitude to expose government secrets. But when the WikiLeaks leader and his acolytes threaten perceived enemies, fail to condemn cyber attacks, and take on messianic airs, they surrender the high ground and hurt the cause of freedom of information they so vehemently champion.
November 19, 2010 |
Swedish prosecutors won permission Thursday from a Stockholm court to seek an international arrest warrant for Julian Assange, the founder of the WikiLeaks website, whom they want to question about allegations of rape and other sexual offenses. The accusations stem from encounters that Assange, 39, had with two women during a visit to Sweden in August. Assange denies any unlawful conduct, saying that his relations with the women were consensual. But the Swedish Prosecution Authority said it wanted to bring Assange in for questioning and asked the district court in Stockholm to declare him detained in absentia.
March 3, 2011 |
The Army has charged Pfc. Bradley Manning, the soldier suspected of leaking thousands of documents published by WikiLeaks, with aiding and giving intelligence to the enemy, a significant escalation of the government's prosecution of the junior intelligence analyst. As part of 22 additional counts filed against Manning, Army prosecutors said he "wrongfully and wantonly" caused intelligence to be published on the Internet, with the knowledge that it would be "accessible to the enemy.
June 3, 2013 |
FT. MEADE, Md. - Government prosecutors, hoping to win a life sentence for Army Pfc. Bradley Manning in the WikiLeaks scandal, opened their case Monday in the court-martial against the young enlistee with a slide show that began with an ominous email he sent in May 2010. He wrote, “If you had unprecedented access to classified networks 14 hours a day 7 days a week for 8+ months, what would you do?” What Manning did, Army Cpt. Joe Morrow alleged in the long-awaited trial at Ft. Meade, was download and send to WikiLeaks more than 700,000 classified government documents, including highly sensitive State Department cables and assessments of terror captives, and prisoner interrogation videos to confidential U.S. evaluations of foreign allies.
April 2, 2011 |
Got a hard-hitting investigative story but can't get it past government censors at home? Publish it in Iceland instead. What about a website featuring classified, inflammatory or potentially libelous material? Park it on an Internet server here, without fear of legal harassment or official pressure to reveal your sources. Lawmakers here have given the go-ahead to an ambitious plan to turn this unassuming island in the North Atlantic into an international sanctuary for free speech, putting Iceland at the leading edge of media openness but also pushing it into uncharted territory.
June 17, 2013 |
LONDON -- Julian Assange, the founder of the WikiLeaks website, is prepared to stay holed up inside the Ecuadorean embassy in London for as long as five years if necessary in order to avoid extradition to Sweden to face what he says are politically motivated allegations of sexual assault, the Ecuadorean foreign minister said Monday. Assange is accused of sexually assaulting two women on separate occasions in Stockholm in August 2010. He was arrested in London in December of that year, which began a series of legal appeals by his attorneys to block his extradition to Sweden.
October 9, 2013 |
If sports stories often fascinate for the ways in which they form distilled metaphors for human existence -- the thrill of victory, the agony of defeat and everything in between -- the saga of Lance Armstrong is particularly intriguing as an examination of public deception, conspiracy and how we are all susceptible to believing our own hype. The first trailer for Alex Gibney's documentary "The Armstrong Lie" finds the Oscar-winning filmmaker sparring with the disgraced cyclist. Gibney originally set out to make a film called "The Road Back" that would chronicle seven-time-winner Armstrong's comeback to the Tour de France in 2009 after having survived cancer.
August 19, 2012
Re "Assange gets political asylum from Ecuador," Aug. 17 In 1998, the British government faced a Spanish court's request to extradite former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet for the assassination, torture and exile of thousands of people. Pinochet was not extradited. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's treatment byBritain's current conservative government offers a sharp contrast with Pinochet's case. Assange never assassinated or tortured anyone, yet he is facing potentially harsher punishment than Pinochet ever would have.