The Intercept’s Most Recent Screed against Julian Assange

(or: a twist on the good whistle-blower/bad whistleblower theme.  Part I of a II part series, and while it’s hard to believe, this was the ‘easy part’, but necessary background for Part II).

Julian Assange’s Hatred of Hillary Clinton Was No Secret. His Advice to Donald Trump Was.’, Robert Mackey, The Intercept, Nov. 15, 2017  (by now, 755 food-fight comments)

He opens:

The revelation that  WikiLeaks secretly offered help to Donald Trump’s campaign, in a series of private Twitter messages sent to the candidate’s son Donald Trump Jr., gave ammunition to the group’s many detractors and also sparked anger from some longtime supporters of the organization and its founder, Julian Assange.

One of the most high-profile dissenters was journalist Barrett Brown, whose crowdsourced investigations of hacked corporate documents later posted on WikiLeaks led to a prison sentence.

Brown had a visceral reaction to the news, first reported by The Atlantic, that WikiLeaks had been advising the Trump campaign. In a series of tweets and Facebook videos, Brown accused Assange of having compromised “the movement” to expose corporate and government wrongdoing by acting as a covert political operative.”

Now I’ll have to say I’m agnostic as to Brown’s claiming further down that it was solely his support for WikiLeaks, given what information’s at the end of the Guardian link at ‘crowdsourced investigations above , as in:

“Three weeks later, Brown would be in jail. He had posted online a series of videos in which he appeared to issue threats directed at a named FBI agent, whom he accused of harassing his mother, and demanded that his previously seized property be returned. In the videos he looked frazzled, pale and on edge. He concluded with a lengthy tirade, saying he feared drug cartel “assassin squads” were out to get him and warning government officials not to come near his apartment.

“I will shoot all of them and kill them if they come,” he said, looking blankly straight into the camera. “It was pretty obvious I was going to be dead before I was forty or so – so I wouldn’t mind going out with two FBI sidearms like a fucking Egyptian Pharaoh.”

But I digress; it’s really hard not to with this saga…

Brown then explained that he’d always defended WikiLeaks’ having published the DNC emails because it was right for an organization dedicated to transparency to do”…but here’s the kicker he’d added: “working with an authoritarian would-be leader to deceive the public is indefensible and disgusting.”

““Plainly,” he observed with bitterness, “the prospect of a Clinton in the White House was such an unimaginable nightmare scenario that all normal standards of truth and morality became moot and it became necessary to get people like Sebastian Gorka into the White House to establish order.”

I’d also laughed out loud at Maceky’s wind-up:

“It is also worth noting that this offer to help Trump came less than two weeks after The Washington Post had thrown the campaign into crisis, by revealing that the candidate had boasted of sexual assault in comments recorded during the taping of an “Access Hollywood” episode in 2005. The recording caught Trump saying that, “when you’re a star,” you can “do anything” to women, even “grab them by the pussy.” WikiLeaks released its first batch of emails hacked from Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta, less than an hour after that report was published.”

Ah, yes; the tape that lauched a million pink pussy-hat ships.

Now I’ll try to show some, not all, of the offending DMs (Direct Messages behind the public Tweets, as I understand it) that the Atlantic had ‘obtained’ (leaked) just ahead of Donald Trump, Jr.’ lawyers having turned them over to a Senate investigative body investigating ‘Russian meddling’ in the 2016 election.  After a few days of reading this stuff,  my eyes are crossed w/ confusion, so apologies if I double up on some.Over the long months from Sept. 20, 2016 to July 2017, Assange, or WikiLeaks, or even a member of the WikiLeaks team, had written many to Trump, who had apparently only ever answered three.

But the Cliffs Notes version is in Julia Ioffe’s title: ‘The Secret Correspondence Between Donald Trump Jr. and WikiLeaks; The transparency organization asked the president’s son for his cooperation—in sharing its work, in contesting the results of the election, and in arranging for Julian Assange to be Australia’s ambassador to the United States.’

“The first one was by way of giving Jr. a heads-up on “A PAC run anti-Trump site is about to launch; The PAC is a recycled pro-Iraq war PAC. We have guessed the password. It is ‘putintrump.’ See ‘About’ for who is behind it. Any comments?”

Ioffe: (The site, which has since become a joint project with Mother Jones, was founded by Rob Glaser, a tech entrepreneur, and was funded by Progress for USA Political Action Committee.)”

The header on Putin Trump includes a hammer and sickle…of course, because it wasn’t just Russians the 17 intel agencies ‘believed’, ‘swore’, ‘assessed’…had hacked the election, but #Putin himself.  Zo: from Mother Jones’s Putin-Trump on ‘Russian Expansion:

“Did you know that Putin was a KGB foreign intelligence officer for 16 years before he went into politics? Or that Putin likes Trump because Trump is “sensible enough to stay out of the way?” Or even how Trump was totally unaware that Russia had already invaded the Ukraine?

Jayzus; did you know that Masha Gessen writes for The Intercept?  This er…Putin hating proof of hers is there, as well.

Anyhoo, Jr. knew nothing; he’d ask around.  Ioffe quoted Jr.’s attorney Alan Futerfas, “Putting aside the question as to why or by whom such documents, provided to Congress under promises of confidentiality,…”, etc.  Good leaks, bad leaks, yada, yada.

“On October 3, 2016, WikiLeaks wrote again. “Hiya, it’d be great if you guys could comment on/push this story,” WikiLeaks suggested, attaching a quote from then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton about wanting to “just drone” WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange.

“Already did that earlier today,” Trump Jr. responded an hour-and-a-half later. “It’s amazing what she can get away with.”

Two minutes later, Trump Jr. wrote again, asking, “What’s behind this Wednesday leak I keep reading about?” The day before, Roger Stone, an informal advisor to Donald Trump, had tweeted, Wednesday@HillaryClinton is done. #WikiLeaks.  No response, but nine days later ‘the Wikileaks account’ (Ioffe even specified) had DMed him: ““Strongly suggest your dad tweets this link if he mentions us,” WikiLeaks went on, pointing Trump Jr. to the link, which it said would help Trump’s followers dig through the trove of stolen documents and find stories.”

On Oct. 21 Jr. has Tweeted:

…and yeah, it’s creepy.

But these are the most interesting to librul peeps, as far as I can tell; back to Mackey:

“He (Barrett Brown) was particularly outraged by an Oct. 21, 2016 message, in which Assange had appealed to Trump Jr. to let WikiLeaks publish one or more of his father’s tax returns in order to make his group’s attacks on Hillary Clinton seem less biased. “If we publish them it will dramatically improve the perception of our impartiality,” the Assange-controlled @Wikileaks account suggested. “That means that the vast amount of stuff that we are publishing on Clinton will have much higher impact, because it won’t be perceived as coming from a ‘pro-Trump’ ‘pro-Russia’ source, which the Clinton campaign is constantly slandering us with.”

(The ‘Assange Controlled’ link is meant to answer questions that the DM may not have come from Assange, as during some of the time stamps were when he’d had no Internet in the Ecuaorian Embassy, and the use of ‘third person’ in some, first-person  plurals in others.  From Assange’s ghost-writer?)

Also the DM to Jr.: , and the request that WikiLeaks be allowed to publish some of Sr.’s tax statements ‘to see“In relation to Mr. Assange: Obama/Clinton placed pressure on Sweden, UK and Australia (his home country) to illicitly go after Mr. Assange. It would be real easy and helpful for your dad to suggest that Australia appoint Assange ambassador to [Washington,] DC.”

WikiLeaks didn’t write again until Election Day, November 8, 2016. “Hi Don if your father ‘loses’ we think it is much more interesting if he DOES NOT conceed [sic] and spends time CHALLENGING the media and other types of rigging that occurred—as he has implied that he might do”, and” “The discussion can be transformative as it exposes media corruption, primary corruption, PAC corruption, etc.,” WikiLeaks wrote.”, which is almost always shorthanded in the media to ‘DO NOT CONCEDE’.

From Ioffe again: “(On December 7, Assange, proclaiming his innocence, had released his testimony in front of London investigators looking into accusations that he had committed alleged sexual assault.)  Of course Julia’s too biased to have mentioned that that at justice4assange online:

‘Justice for Assange, Accurate reporting on the one remaining allegation’

“In the interest of accuracy, journalists and the public in general, should note the following facts:

1) Julian Assange has not been charged at any time.

2) Julian Assange was cleared of ’rape’ five and a half years ago:

On 21 August 2010 the Chief Prosecutor Eva Finne stated she “made the assessment that the evidence did not disclose any offence of rape”. On 25 August 2010 she stated that “The conduct alleged by SW disclosed no crime at all and that file (K246314-10) would be closed.” The case was then closed.

The matter was subsequently re-opened with a different prosecutor after the intervention of a senior Swedish politician, Claes Borgstrom, during the heat of Mr Assange’s conflict with the United States.” (the rest is here.)  It’s glaring to note how many subtweets are still calling Assange a rapist and a pedophile.  But nor had dear Julia taken note of this fukkery:

‘Signs of U.K. Misconduct in Assange Case’ Dennis Bernstein,, Nov. 18, 2017

“A British court proceeding on a freedom of information request regarding how the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) dealt with the case of WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange has revealed that CPS deleted relevant emails from the account of a now-retired CPS lawyer, Paul Close.”

Oh; I may have forgotten to say that Barrett Brown’s been writing at the Intercept since July 16, 2015; I sure hadn’t known that.  How many ‘fearless investigative journalists’ are in Pierre’s stable by now?

Interesting stuff via Barrett Brown:


On the left sidebar at the Intercept is ‘What Julian Assange’s War on Hillary Clinton Says About WikiLeaks’, Robert Mackey, Aug. 6, 2016, which first title was apparently ’Accusing WikiLeaks Beside the Point’.

In recent month, the WikiLeaks Twitter feed has started to look more like the stream of an opposition research firm working mainly to undermine Hillary Clinton than the updates of a non-partisan platform for whistleblowers.”  I agree, but: so what?  He’s objected to her mega-power alliances for a hella long time.  Peek into his ‘Google is not what it seems’ (an excerpt from his Sept. 2014 book ‘When Google Met WikiLeaks’), for instance; even more relevant today than it was then, including as an Imperial propaganda tool, creating algorithms to sideline any leftist, or even progressive websites.

“Nobody wants to acknowledge that Google has grown big and bad. But it has. Schmidt’s tenure as CEO saw Google integrate with the shadiest of US power structures as it expanded into a geographically invasive megacorporation. But Google has always been comfortable with this proximity. Long before company founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin hired Schmidt in 2001, their initial research upon which Google was based had been partly funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).48 And even as Schmidt’s Google developed an image as the overly friendly giant of global tech, it was building a close relationship with the intelligence community.”

Brown explained that he had defended WikiLeaks for releasing emails hacked from the Democratic National Committee, “because it was an appropriate thing for a transparency org to do.” But, he added, “working with an authoritarian would-be leader to deceive the public is indefensible and disgusting.”


Re the recent ‘Ain’t it grand that now, because: Trump, liberals love the combined Intelligence Services?  Ha, I did love this:  Emptywheel’s Nov. 16 ‘The Implicit Threat in Julian Assange’s Ambassador Tweet’ contained this stellar irony:

(With the release of vault 8) “Assange is not offering to release secrets about CIA, but instead weapons leaked or stolen from them. Sure, to the extent the Vault 7 releases haven’t already, that’ll allow others to attribute CIA attacks. But it’ll also devastate the agency and badly undermine US power.”

Only one comment of the 37 made some sport of that contention:

Karl Kolchak says:  November 16, 2017 at 8:44 pm

“It’ll ‘devastate’ the CIA?  The agency responsible for torture, rendition, assassinations, predator drone strikes on civilians, testing of psychosis-inducing drugs on unsuspecting victims, overthrowing democratic governments and meddling in the affairs and elections of just about every nation on Earth?

If that’s true, Assange is the greatest world hero of the 21st century.  And I’m so old I remember when Democrats seriously attempted to disband the CIA as a threat to democracy and didn’t keep cheering them on.”

In fairness, although she’s been smackin’ around Assange and WikiLeaks pretty fiercely lately, she’d written:

“It’s worth remembering, as Emma Best notes, because they’ve been under unrelenting surveillance since 2010, “WikiLeaks *knew* the DMs were being monitored in real time. It was inevitable that this would leak. Simply calling this dumb misses the point and ignores the tradecraft at play.” Assange, from the refusal of inside information to the demand for an Ambassadorship, was staging a show, and we should remember that.”

40 responses to “The Intercept’s Most Recent Screed against Julian Assange

  1. “Asked if he would comply with the House Intelligence Committee, Credico sounded a defiant tone. “I’m a journalist with a radio show and there’s nothing [the committee] can elicit out of me because I’m covered by the First Amendment. And everything I’ve talked to Assange about has been on the show, and everything else is in my fucking notes. Would any journalist give them their notes?”

    With his “interview” just days away, Credico exuded confidence. “I’ve worked strip joints in Florida filled with Marines that wanted to kill me for attacking their war in Grenada,” the former comedian remarked. “Congress is no problem. I’ve worked much tougher rooms than that.” :-P

    on morning edit: don’t hold back, wikileaks! OMG.

    • Speechless, my mouth is still gaping open in shock.

      • how fine it is to see you, dancingrabbit. are you speechless about credico having been subpoenaed, or the screed in general? i do know that it may be too long to read, but…it was too long to cobble together, as well. part II is by way of a con, as i see it, and will take even longer to cobble together. stuff like: “we thought assange was on the left!!” pfffft, as if GG and snowden are. giving too many hints, but fer crissake, they are after him. or ‘wikileaks’ as they say…

        anyhow, hope life is good for you, and don’t…be a stranger, even though some of us here are…strangers in a strange land, and feel it acutely. ;-)

  2. “Did you know that Putin was a KGB foreign intelligence officer for 16 years before he went into politics?”

    yeah, but our KGB is good, so when Hitler youth George HW Bush steps in, it’s smooth sailing from CIA to White House.

    sorry, down w/a cold & lots to digest here.

    • i liked: “Or even how Trump was totally unaware that Russia had already invaded the Ukraine?” yanno, revanchist roosia? and georgia, too!

      spit-take worthy: :…so when Hitler youth George HW Bush steps in, it’s smooth sailing from CIA to White House.” you still got it, even w/ a cold, #MeThree. but i’m sure sorry to hear you’ve got one. but yeah, it’s a lunker of a post, but i srsly didn’t want to make it a III-part series.

      now wikileaks is being accused of affecting the catalan referendum exit, not just the roosians. they are srsly after his ass.

      • Of course the US IC is after Assange. How many State Department memos from Chelsea Manning did they publish? That quantity of embarrassment outclasses and actual threat to national security. Cablegate and Collateral Murder more than anything else are why they are after Assange’s ass. Think about what just those two releases revealed. That diplomats don’t walk in cold and say all those nice diplomatic things when they arrive; that they are briefed about the country, the leader, the strategic importants, and the talking points–all researched and written by the worker bees at the various diplomatic desks. That was the grinding email after email that did not excite the press’s attention. And then there were the emails that made one go “Hmmmm. Now I understand what’s really going on.” Tunisians had a big dose of that and decided to change their government, the only one that has held so far.

        Take the Square and Anonymous (whoever that particular bunch were) tweeted support for the Catalan referendum and frequently retweeted Wikileaks. It is easy for some agencies to think that retweeting implies complicity or even conspiracy. Only if there was information about the Spanish government published by wikileaks that touched on squirrelly dealings about Catalonia.

      • thank you. the cold was mild, and I had a more serious, ie painful problem but thankfully now also passed…

        the question that refused to come to my mind was: why would Assange “intervene” on behalf of Trump? I can understand his personal loathing of HRC, but what do he & WikiLeaks have to gain? in my mind, it kind of makes WikiLeaks look bad, partisan, not being bipartisan, and dishing dirt on all. unless they made a similar offer to HRC, or better yet Sen. Afterbern?

        • good to see you, #methreetoo, and to hear that your cold was a mild un. as for your worthy question, i can’t speak for assange, but i can offer some possibilities, but first i’ll deal with the ‘offers to hrc and the afterbern’. the dnc email publications showed how incredibly well the party tanked bernie and how, so i dunno what he’d have to offer assange, as that organization was one of the ones notes “rests on a mountain of secrets”. and hrc really did want him dead, although some of his critics claim that email ‘was made to look like a leak, and the source was ‘unattributed’, which he must have groaned over.

          now remember, he’s been stuck in the ecuadoran embassy since june of 2012, and even after the “United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention found that the various forms of confinement suffered by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange violate his human rights. The Working Group has many times warned that it is unlawful to force someone to choose between liberty and a fundamental right, such as asylum, which Assange now enjoys only so long as he stays inside the walls of the Ecuadorean embassy.” (from justice4assange), the UK flipped their ruing the bird.

          also, there’s been an open FBI invetigation sine 2011, and iirc, there may even be a sealed indictment for flouting the espionage act. ha, one of the links led to this video:

          but the reaching out to trump, jr. (make me an ambassador) had a hella lot to do w/ getting hrc to call off the dogs in sweden. gotta go for now, more later if i think of anything more pithy.

          ha, this defense of assange by ron paul came right after the one above.

        • before i shut down for the night…my days begin at 4:30, and i’ve been trying to bring evidence at another acclaimed website that yes, bill gates is evil, and yes the trump tax reform and jobs is even more evil than the dubya, obama salutes to wall street.

          but i did want to say before i sleep that the first dm assange had with trump, jr. was to hip him to the mother jones ‘putin trump website, which silliness made the cover of time mag, remember? the white house painted 2/3 red? so yes, that was valid, imo. the ‘give me daddy’s tax return so that ‘we’ might seem less biased’, creepy, but then…as far as i remember, we dunno who sent that missive, in actual fact.

          but ooof, can i add that ian welsh still has on his blogroll, and his take on n korea, in which he kinda says that b at moa is a ridiculous appeaser?

          an earlier one was on the order of ‘hail trump, julius cheezer’. good gawd all friday. anyhoo, i got a lotta chores to do before i zzzzleep, and it was three (slow) oaves of bread day to boot. my heart to your heart, #methreetoo, tom joad on the road.

  3. Z0, shorter version, Aussie, Aussie AUSSIE : putintrump?

  4. lol! “Aussie, Aussie, putinNtrump, bake me a cake as fast as you can…roll it, and pat it, and mark it with a…APT, put it in the oven for baby and ME!

  5. re ukraine: but see, parliament’s trying to solve their out-of-control nazi party.

    “The head of the Public Chamber of the Crimean Republic has called on the international community to recognize Ukrainian nationalist parties and groups as neo-Nazis, and institute a special international body that would investigate their criminal activities.

    “The extreme, or as they themselves call it ‘integral’ Ukrainian nationalism has gone beyond all barriers and turned into a Nazi movement. Also, we can constantly witness its manifestations in modern Ukraine, like the founding of the volunteer military units and various political structures such as the Right Sector, the Freedom Party and the Radical Party,” Grigory Ioffe was quoted as saying by RIA Novosti.”, via RT

    on edit’ also from RT: ‘Moscow Patriarchate grants greater independence to Ukrainian Orthodox Church
    i sure wondered wth? at first, but reading down the article it says, rather politely:

    The Ukrainian Orthodox Church has refused to officially support the new Ukrainian government installed after the 2014 violent coup in the country’s capital, Kiev, but its representatives have repeatedly explained this by the principle of non-interference into secular issues.

    In his speech before the Congress of Russian Orthodox Bishops, Metropolitan Onufriy again raised the issue of internal conflict in the Ukrainian society. “Some dishonest politicians attempts to artificially light up the fire of mutual strife between orthodox believers in order to earn some political dividends. With love we remind these politicians that we have asked them not to intrude the church with their ideas, even if they see them as the most pure and noble, because the Church lives by the ideas of Crist, not the ideas of ordinary humans,” he said.

    • On the Church matter, I don’t know very much about that, though the various permutations of national recognition one body for another could probably occupy a lifetime of study, and there have been, I think, three different branches in Ukraine even before things got in a muddle there.

      My little church solved the problem in the US (magnified with so many nations of immigrants each adhering to their home churches and the local traditions thereof) by not affiliating with any of them. A bishop on his way to Australia consecrated our church, so our parish extended pretty far, hemispherically speaking. That was back in the day, sadly no longer.

      Good speech, though, thanks!

    • Fundamental reality about Ukraine. The former Polish and Austo-Hungarian parts (before Soviet unification) were predominantly Catholic. The Eastern, ethnic Russian parts were predominantly Orthodox and in the Russian empire back in the day. Krushchev, a Russian born near the Ukraine border. Then there’s this seven-year part of Krushchev’s resume.

      “In 1938, Stalin sent him to govern Ukraine, and he continued the purges there. During what was known in the Soviet Union as the Great Patriotic War (Eastern Front of World War II), Khrushchev was again a commissar, serving as an intermediary between Stalin and his generals. Khrushchev was present at the bloody defense of Stalingrad, a fact he took great pride in throughout his life. After the war, he returned to Ukraine before being recalled to Moscow as one of Stalin’s close advisers.”

      “Moscow transferred the peninsula—which is connected to the Ukrainian mainland by a narrow isthmus—to the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1954.

      It’s often said that Premier Nikita Khrushchev gave Crimea as a “gift” to his adopted country. Khruschev’s relationship with Ukraine is a complex one: He was an ethnic Russian from a town that is now part of Russia, but he rose through the ranks of the Ukrainian communist party and led the region as head of the the party during the worst years of Stalin’s purges.

      The initial reasons for the transfer of Crimea may have had less to do with generosity than demographics. Before World War II, Crimea had been home to at least 300,000 Tatars. Because a number of members of the group collaborated with the occupying Nazis during the war, Stalin had the entire community deported in 1944.

      The transfer of Crimea was framed as a goodwill gesture to mark the 300th anniversary of Ukraine’s merger with tsarist Russia. The announcement of the merger in Pravda noted “the economic commonalities, territorial closeness, and communication and cultural links,” though as Michigan State historian Lewis Siegelbaum notes, Crimea’s cultural links had always been closer to Russia. At the time, there were about 268,000 Ukrainians and 858,000 ethnic Russians living in the area.

      But Khrushchev had evidently had his eye on Crimea for a while, and given what Ukraine had recently been through under Stalin, a propaganda gesture certainly must have seemed advisable.”

      Also freequently overlooked is the presence of two US destroyers hovering between Odessa and Sebastapol during the Euromaidan demonstrations and coup d’etat. That (even symbolic) threat to use Ukraine to evict Russia from Seabastapol triggered Russian support of civilians who support the bases in the Crimea because they likely have jobs there and are ethnic Russians transferred to Ukraine when Ukraine separated from the Soviet Union.

      So back to Orthodox politics. Kyril grants greater independence to Ukrainian Orthodox Church would be outside of Crimea, which is depite Western pressure still part of Russia. That means all of the Orthodox in Ukraine as it now stands. Granting independence separates the Ukrainian Orthodox Church from being seen (although it likely still will be) as a Russian front organization. It also give is the potential, given personal networks through the World Council of Churches of having talks with Ukrainian Catholics, who are loyal to Pope Francis; that is a agency of resolving some kinds of conflicts between the ethnic groups that the religions have adherents from. It gets more complicated in most countries, but church leaders can broker peace deals.

      • given that you call it ‘the fundamental reality about ukraine’, i take it that you reckon the slate history is correct. but yes, a bit different than i’ve heard from other russophiles. but i’ll read it again later, and thank you for bringing it. and also for your take on why kiril, did what they did…and why.

  6. It’s all very confusing, wendye, and I can understand why your eyes were getting crossed. Which president was it had a brother trying to get rich selling presidential beer? I think i remember a can showing up on an earlier Antiques episode and being not worth much. Maybe in a hundred years.

    A better memory was Trump losing his cool on a first call to the then Aussie prime minister. But don’t ruin your eyes checking tweets on that one. The ambassadorship thing seems awefully farfetched.

    Kim Dotcom had to be palling around with Glenn Greenwald back in the day, and I remember you were annoyed ( rightfully so) at the dismissive treatment given Assange at the Auckland Town Hall chaired by Greenwald.

    Some personal animosities in media matters run counter to what’s visible on the surface – a bit like the Pine Island glacier that’s poised to flood the world.

    On that happy note I’ll just change the subject to cricket in kiwiland. I got to listen to the first day of the first test entire on my phone, till next day overseas link had been eliminated. Oh well, it had been joyous but far too good to continue. I knew that. Great going, Black Caps!

    • ach, sorry i can’t provide the cliffs notes, and i do understand that there’s almost too much to read, much less absorb…esp w/o having followed a lot of it in real time. and yes, the intercept is playing the same game now w/ assange. part II may make some of that even clearer (if i can ever manage sling it together). the post i’ll reference is a 3000 word hit job full of untruths, distortions, etc., and came ONE day later than this one, and is a more public publication w/ a very hidden agenda.

      i was pleased by what the the patriarchate decided, and how they worded their condemnation of the post-putsch govt. so…lovingly. good on them! glad you can listen to kiwi cricket on your phone. thwok!

    • yes, assange knew being made an ambassador was silly, but he’d wanted to head off clinton’s influence in the swedish (non)prosecution story that fizzled mightily.

      but as for dotcom, i put it up to show one of the reasons that assange wanted anyone but clinton, as i did the ‘google is not what it seems’. but it was kim dotcom who’d first suggested that seth rich was murdered for leaking the dlc and podesta emails. i dunno if dotcom got it from big bad black republican sheriff clark or not. remember him in the mike whitney column you gave us?

      i followed the breadcrumbs and didn’t find clarke credible, and according to marcy wheeler, later he recanted (she’d called him a ‘ratfucker’ w/o naming him in one of her essays)…or mumbled or something, which is not to say it’s impossible that he was, perhaps more unlikely.

      and of course, former uk ambassador craig murray’s always said that he met the leaker in deecee himself. but it’s been proven, i tell you! it was russian hackers!

      • Clarke is a black Arpaio who latched onto Trump. He’s not even credible about his own administration of his jail.

        Being made ambassador had the practical point of diplomatic immunity–only if the Australian government didn’t hate him more than Hillary Clinton.

        The Seth Rich story has not gone beyond a local crime story. Hoping for a good cold case investigator. I see no evidence that Rich is the culprit, only those fascinated with the thought that Vince Foster did not see justice. Which is true in a way; most likely the Wall Street Journal’s morning story that day triggered Foster’s suicide as Foster was the Presidential counsel who would have to reply about the growing sex scandal with Clinton. The murder charge was a creation of Rush Limbaugh’s imagination and it worked to imprint itself on the popular memory just because of the tabloid coverage.

        My hunch is that there was someone’s humint penetration of the DNC IT operation, which likely was contracted to an IT company, If Julian Assange is to be believed, it was hand-carried to Wikileaks (who?) It might be that Mueller would like to ask Credico that question, given that Roger Stone has fessed that Credico was his intermediary with Assange. (Assange or Wikileaks, are we clear about which?) Watch and wait and get out the popcorn. I know that if the “trying to subvert the election” charges are true, the first place I would look is the whereabouts of Roger Stone and his contacts during the critical period. We are not there yet, but we are closer than I would have believed a year ago.

        And I hope that Mueller probes a little bit into the behavior of the intelligence community’s behavior once the communications came on their screen (literally). But so far the earliest that we have contemporary searches for are in December 2016 when the NSA warrantless wiretap flagged Michael Flynn contacting Sisylak and Netanyahu, they were able to link Flynn to a foreign operation involving two countries. That likely created an alert given the results of the election. The silence of the IC publicly about what they know has to do with (1) there is a huge amount about warrantless wiretap that has to go on the record in order convict anyone whose evidence depends solely on what they have; (2) they do not want to expose exactly how their screening works as a method or possible humint sources; (3) this evidence gains credibility from being presented in a adversarial Article III court. Those things might explain the convoluted way of pre-storing everything and the searching after the fact. It’s not about imminent threat at all but admissibility in court. The court’s subpoena for the search functions as the warrant after the fact. That’s just a WAG.

        In the Credico scenario, Amb. Craig Murray might have indeed met the leader, and it most likely is not Credico himself for technical expertise reasons. So it the sysadmin who lifted the information from within the DNC that the story needs to close the loop. Or the identity of ShadowBrokers.

        Again, heat up the popcorn. The information war continues, but the truth is likely to be different from what both sides have been claiming. Because all sides have holes in their cases they have to keep covered.

        • yeah on clarke, partially why i linked to his twitter acct. there’s more in this comment than i can absorb for now, but i will say that given that i’d barely followed the mueller investigations, stone wasn’t on my radar before credico. but i did remember this from last week, although i hadn’t actually read it. fwiw: ‘Stone ‘trolling you silly’: WikiLeaks’ Assange to ‘fake news’ CNN, RT, nov. 30

          as far a s foster, either assange or wikileaks had tweeted that all of the foster files had disappeared…or close to that, another nail in his coffin according to the intercept screed, and he’d misidentified some of the big players in the vicious crackdown in catalonia. gonna go eat some cheery-little-Os now. mr. wd buys a banana or two on saturdays. ;-)

          and oh, lordie, i just read more scanned about flynn than i’d ever wanted to at fox news after i found the toner presser below, and crikey, there’s a flynn, jr., too.

  7. Juliania2, it was Jimmy Carter’s brother Billy, who had a contract brewery for Billy beer, which he sold out a gas station in Plains GA. Both Carter and Clinton had wayward “good ole boy” brothers that made it into the news and required Presidential “counseling” to make disappear from the media. Only Billy Carter became a folk cult figure.

    • Lost my reply here, but presidents’ brothers et al would be an interesting research project, and you covered it nicely, thanks, Tarheel. And currently a son-in-law in the spotlight, but he’s brought that on himself, having had Netanyahu occupying his bedroom as a teenager (well, that probably wasn’t Jared’s fault, and no snide comments remembering it’s Sunday).

      I better quit before I lose this one as well.

  8. Given how much Assange has been tweeting, why doesn’t Trump appoint him as White House spokesperson. Huckabee Sanders is almost reaching the Sean Spicer point. And it would get Assange out of the Ecuadorian embassy.

    • i suppose you jest, but i) assange would have to admire T and his war policies, ii) the next prez would fire him, slap in irons given that the still empaneled (iirc) grand jury would indict him rather handily, and iii) as soon as he’d step foot outside the ecuadorian embassy, he’d be cuffed anyway. the uk doesn’t engage in fair play any more than the u.s. does, see: ‘withheld email communications.

      wikileaks said on the 28th that they released the cablegate files seven years ago that day. ooof, here’s the wiki on the release/s; a hella lot of history, right or wrong. i hadn’t known (or remembered) that it was the guardian that had released the password that led to unredacted files being sent zinging out into the world.

      wikileaks also pointed to the leaks on tom cotton given that the rumors are or were that cotton would be made head of the cia replacing pompeo who’d replace rexxon at state. what i’ve read about cotton is just terrifyingly, breathtakingly evil. but: “oh, no; tillerson has my complete confidence!”

      on later edit: interesting speculation on what the IC doesn’t want to admit and why, i suspect you’re right. i’ve tried to half-follow the flynn stuff, including b’s take on it as almost expected, given what his job was re: the UN condemnation of israel, asking russia not to over-react on sanctions, etc. but let me go see if i can find a tweet i’d seen this a.m….somewhere as i’d cruised around.

      oh, bother and tiddley pom: at wikileaks:

      zo…will he/they be charged under the logan act? stay tuned, i guess,

  9. Unless there is more recent action of removal of Foster records, this would be the most recent allegation, from Michael Graham a conservative radio talk show host in 2014:

    “On the night of the death of deputy White House counsel Vince Foster in 1993, a Secret Service agent claimed he saw Williams remove two handfuls of folders from his office, which she vehemently denied.[9]”

    The New York Times editorial from 1993 “Who is Vince Foster”, which Foster apparently took very personally (wonder why?) is now now found at the New York Times site.

    The morning transcript from Michael Graham in which he alleges Maggie Smith removed folders from Vince Foster’s office is now gone from Michael Graham’s site and the Secret Service agent was never named.

    These days allegations are easy.

    The function of a White House counsel is to defend the government and President from attacks. Is there anything likely to be in his files of an incriminatory nature in the first place? Would those not be in other offices that provided the Clintons with private legal services?

    The purpose of resurfacing the allegation is to have the charge stick without actual evidence just through frequent repetition.

    It was very fascinating in the 1990s to see how Hillary Clinton’s persona was played by right-wing males and their media for the purpose of sexualised fantasy. The role they cast her in was the murderous femme fatale, often denied to them because she was a lesbian.

    Either Assange is ignorant of this quarter-century history or it’s a cheap shot to play for political leverage in his position.

    The US government is likely to change dramatically in the heavy politics over Trump that I’m not sure that Assange as distinct from wikileaks will be a major political concern of the next President.

    But the biggest weakness of the plan now is Trump’s new relationship with Theresa May.

    And yes, it was most definitely a jest along the lines of “diplomatic immunity”, Wow!

    • i have no idea what assange/wikileaks knew, nor whether he/they included a link….so he might have just been ‘shit-stirring’. but me? i believe paul wellstone was asassinated. ;)

      allow me to add (via RT): “The CIA’s official Twitter account tweeted Pompeo’s comments about the whistleblowing site from an interview he gave at the Reagan National Defense Forum Saturday.
      “I never miss an opportunity when I’m with my officers to tell them the last thing we can tolerate is to have a secret that we’ve stole re-stolen,” Pompeo told moderator Brett Baier at the Los Angeles event.”

      (the vault 7 reveal and exploits)

      “The CIA is believed to have lost control of this arsenal before WikiLeaks obtained it. The hacking capabilities were doing the rounds among government hackers, one of whom provided WikiLeaks with the collection, the whistleblowing site explained. According to WikiLeaks, the Vault7 source wanted to “initiate a public debate about the security, creation, use, proliferation and democratic control of cyberweapons.”
      Some of the biggest revelations in Vault7 were the CIA’s ability to mask its hacking exploits to make them appear to be the work of other countries, namely Russia, China and Iran. It has raised questions about security firm Crowdstrike linking the Democratic National Committee email hack to Russian hackers.”

      pompeo: ‘you think your sources are safe and secure: we’ll figure it out, bwa, ha, ha.’

      and again: is this really about impeaching trump? EW’s ‘next stop jared’ says her commentariat believes so, and ‘they got him’ thru flynn’ (and the room went WILD!!!!). one commenter (bella) who resisted got smacked down numerous times by hall monitor rayne this time. and perhaps banned, but bell’s final comment was ‘pulled’.

      on edit: wait; you remember the 1993 version and they’ve altered it now? “The morning transcript from Michael Graham in which he alleges Maggie Smith removed folders from Vince Foster’s office is now gone from Michael Graham’s site and the Secret Service agent was never named.” if so, oh, my, and…your memory is terrifying. ;-)

      • Don’t fear my memory, fear the information on wikipedia and its citation. That was the cite for the Maggie Smith story, and it is now 404. You see the original source of that story anywhere? Anywhere that attributes more than a “Secret Service officer”.

        Flynn is the counterpart of John Deane in Watergate terms. What got Nixon was the mission 18 minutes of tape that his secretary erased.

        We have a lot of both..and stuff floating around. Herr T. even in GOP space is not qualified to be President. Yesterday he stepped on his lawyers’ case; today he had his lawyer claim it was him that wrote the incriminating tweet. As many attorneys pointed out, for counsel to write the offending tweet is worse that Trump’s confession of obstruction of justice. Herr T is as out of control as was Nixon.

  10. Q: is the mueller investigation really about impeaching trump? i keep see that hint, clue, over and over, by implication at emptywheel, loads of other D/librul websites, and now at democracy now, close to: constitutional lawyer says T can be impeached w/o derailing the mueller investigation!

    do most believe ‘impeach’ means ‘removed from office’? phooey, big bubba was impeached…and censured. prez pence?

    • Not really. It is about determining the facts and making charges in several criminal issues out of the election and Trump’s firing of Comey, who was investigating the allegations of Russian meddling (let’s go with the most serioius allegation for November 2017) in the US election. Lots are people are dismissing setting up social media to address US voters — either pro-Trump or anti-Clinton (or the reverse, to muddy the waters around the particular IP addresses.)

      • okay, that pretty much tracks w/ wsws’s patrick martin reporting this a.m. four indictments, some pleas, etc. (couple players i’m unfamiliar with). but apparently steam is rolling for impeachment due to trump’s ‘obstruction of justice’ (difi, mark warner, but martin notes that it’s buy way of campaign slogans for 2018 given that the senate has an R majority, they hope to pressure him to…resign?

        “Representatives of the super-rich like Warner and Feinstein are not targeting Trump because of his racist attacks on immigrants and Muslims, his gigantic tax-cut for American corporations—to be paid for through savage cuts in social spending—or his readiness to use US American military power around the world. Instead, they regard Trump as a destabilizing factor, in both domestic and international politics, whose provocative behavior undermines the long-term interests of the capitalist ruling class.”

  11. uh-oh. i’m out for the night, words are beyond my grasp. la luna bella is full tonight, and even obscured off and on by clouds tonight she makes more sense to me. i’ll go out and howl at her and hope to hear coyotes joining me, or even a fox hoarsely barking.

    love to you and all of us; it’s a rare things, isn’t it? love can’t be commodified yet (i hope) j/k. ;-)

  12. My thanks to you and the Commenters for helping me to make sense of WikiLeaks and all that it pertains to, and of course, the Unassailable Facts are still MIA, but that[s nature in my belief that the Internet IS the “deep state.”

    And keep up the good work!


    • hola, amigo; qué pasa? (for those of you who don’t read french, it translates either as: ‘hey, whassup, my friend?’ or alternately ‘do you rent pigs?’

      srsly, i apologize for it being such a semi-incoherent lunker of a mess, and i suppose that yes, most the unassailable facts are MIA, save for the key one: the intercept (home of glenn greenwald, snowden, funded by pierre omidyar’s quarter of a billion…is trouncing him. perhaps part II will make more sense; the basis of it seems to be in concert w/ the intercept’s hit job here.

      i’ll take a break w/ another diary or two, but choosing will be rough, given all that’s in the news, including the apparently stolen election in honduras, reports of saleh being assassinated by houthis in yemen, but goofily i might choose #meToo instead.

      hope all is well as can be w/ you and yours. things for the rabble class are gonna get harder for a long time after the trump ‘tax reform’ plan passes, perhaps just before christmas.

  13. Speaking of The Intercept, today we have: Trump White House Weighing Plans for Private Spies to Counter “Deep State” Enemies

    The Trump administration is considering a set of proposals developed by Blackwater founder Erik Prince and a retired CIA officer — with assistance from Oliver North, a key figure in the Iran-Contra scandal — to provide CIA Director Mike Pompeo and the White House with a global, private spy network that would circumvent official U.S. intelligence agencies, according to several current and former U.S. intelligence officials and others familiar with the proposals. The sources say the plans have been pitched to the White House as a means of countering “deep state” enemies in the intelligence community seeking to undermine Donald Trump’s presidency.

    The creation of such a program raises the possibility that the effort would be used to create an intelligence apparatus to justify the Trump administration’s political agenda.

    “Pompeo can’t trust the CIA bureaucracy, so we need to create this thing that reports just directly to him,” said a former senior U.S. intelligence official with firsthand knowledge of the proposals, in describing White House discussions. “It is a direct-action arm, totally off the books,” this person said, meaning the intelligence collected would not be shared with the rest of the CIA or the larger intelligence community. “The whole point is this is supposed to report to the president and Pompeo directly.”

    • well prince had also offered to head the war in afghanistan, yanno, to help fight anyone in the way of amerikans plundering the vast mineral wealth there over the next 25 years. ha! come to think of it, orange julius also offered putin a chance to fight IS there, yanno…in the graveyard of empires. ;-) bet he can’t wait to say yes.

      but this is all being told to the intercept ‘anonymously’?

    • Instead of giving the classified information to Prince, declassify it and let the public see it. Would gain clarity and provide competition to Wikileaks. Somewhat in jest but heavy transparency does have its value when there are two contending hidden powers in government — the deep state and the Prince state.

  14. Much as i’d love to sic you onto David Lindorff’s call for unified action to support Social Security, wendye, I think we’d both have more fun with Trump’s assault on Utah parks – 85% chop for Bear Ears and 50% for Escalante.

    Environmentalists, plus Navajo, Hopi, Zuni, Utes in two groups which manage the areas, as well as Patagonia (the store, not the country) are pledging to sue, and you never know, TD, this could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back and gets us all out marching to “76Trombones”…

    I’d bring up the rear with my poor folk poster counterpoint Woodie Guthrie themed this land is our land – haven’t got anything from Patagonia to wear, but would a shirt from REI do (it was a gift)?

    • yeah, i’d seen the story first at RT, then sent a USA today piece w/ better maps to pastfedup, remember him from FDL? i’m pretty certain that orange julius had promised the sagebrush rebellionists, tea people, to make war on the public lands…for profit, of course. PILT ain’t enough for him, nossir, he wants the land in the hands of bidness, as did/do mccain and kyl in AZ.

      i sure do wish them well in their lawsuit, but color me dubious as all giddy-up. oddly enough, we can see the bears ears from our road’s corner, and i used to walk out there carrying babbies…imagining us flying through the air to them, north by northwest…and straight on until morning. this coverage at least gets the names of the tribes right, not the SL tribune.

      we hiked somewhere (edge of the cedars, mebbe?) where we could look across a canyon below to see the escalante grand staircase, and oh, did it look wild and wonderful!

    • now i might be able to have a bitta fun at lindorf’s expense instead, juliania. oh, my another march on washington to educate the young and old alike! he takes a bit of aim at O, dems, and simpson/bowles, but seems not to realize two things: congress doesn’t care cuz they don’t give fig about what the rabble want or need, and in any event, come the trump budget, the D’s will throw their collective hands in air (after wailing a bit) and declare ‘TINA’; we’re forced into making a grand bargain so the gummint doesn’t shut down’….once again.

      but yep, the popular resistance newsletter will dutifully report any such marches. shoot, mebbe they already have, and i blew by the headlines.

    • 76Trombones would be a welcome circus after Keystone Kops and Korrupt Judges, julianiania.

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