Book Launch: “In Defense of Julian Assange” – Defend WikiLeaks

book-launch:-“in-defense-of-julian-assange”-–-defend-wikileaks

21-11-19 06:02:00,

Book Launch: “In Defense of Julian Assange”

21 November 2019

“In Defense of Julian Assange”

Today OR Books publishes “In Defense of Julian Assange,” a new essay compilation on the persecution and prosecution of the WikiLeaks founder and publisher.

Edited by author and historian Tariq Ali and civil rights attorney Margaret Kunstler, the book deals with Assange and WikiLeaks’ groundbreaking journalism and its impact, the fight to protect whistleblowers and the public’s right to know, and the threat the US indictment of Assange poses to the freedom of the press.

“In Defense of Julian Assange” features contributions from leading activists, journalists, whistleblowers, and public figures from around the world, including Pamela Anderson, Noam Chomsky, Daniel Ellsberg, Chris Hedges, Margaret Kimberly, Matt Taibbi, Ai Wei Wei, and many more.

James C. Goodale, former Vice Chairman and General Counsel of The New York Times, said:

“This book shows why the Julian Assange case is one of the most important press freedom cases of this century or any other century.”

The United States has charged Assange with 17 counts under the Espionage Act and one count of conspiracy to commit a computer crime for the 2010 and 2011 publication of US war reports related to Afghanistan and Iraq and diplomatic cables, which exposed war crimes, previously unreported civilian deaths, and rampant corruption and abuse. These are the first charges ever brought under the Espionage Act, a 1917 law created for spies in World War I, against a journalist for publishing. If convicted, Assange could face at least 175 years in prison.

Julian Assange remains imprisoned in solitary confinement HMP Belmarsh, a maximum-security prison in London, at the behest of the United States as he awaits his extradition trial, scheduled to begin February 25th, 2020.

Barry J. Pollack, representing Assange in the United States, said,

“The unprecedented indictment of Julian Assange attempts to criminalize basic acts of journalism.  The prosecution of a publisher for gathering news from sources, protecting the identity of those sources, and exposing truthful and newsworthy information is inconsistent with the First Amendment and poses a grave threat to journalists everywhere.”

Royalties from book sales go to the Courage Foundation,

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Russian Defense Minister Publishes Evidence Of US Oil Smuggling From Syria

russian-defense-minister-publishes-evidence-of-us-oil-smuggling-from-syria

29-10-19 09:02:00,

Via The Saker blog,

Translated by Leo, bold and italics added for emphasis.

Source: https://ria.ru/20191026/1560247607.html

MOSCOW, October 26, 2019 – RIA Novosti – The Russian Ministry of Defense has published satellite intelligence images, showing American oil smuggling from Syria.

Image 1: Situation in the Syrian Arab Republic as of October 26, 2019.

According to the ministry, the photos confirm that “Syrian oil, both before and after the routing defeat of the Islamic State terrorists in land beyond the Euphrates river, under the reliable protection by US military servicemen, oil was actively being extracted and then the fuel trucks were massively being sent for processing outside of Syria.”

Image 2: Daman oil gathering station, Syria, Deir ez-Zor province, 42 km east of Deir ez-Zor, August 23, 2019.

Here, in a picture of the Daman oil gathering station (42 kilometers east of the Deir-ez-Zor province), taken on August 23, a large amount of trucks were spotted. “There were 90 automotive vehicles, including 23 fuel trucks,” the caption to the image said.

In addition, on September 5, there were 25 vehicles in the Al-Hasakah province, including 22 fuel trucks. Three days later, on September 8, in the vicinity of Der Ez-Zor, 36 more vehicles were recorded (32 of them were fuel trucks). On the same day, 41 vehicles, including 34 fuel trucks, were in the Mayadin onshore area.

Image 3: Gathering of vehicles in Syria, Al-Hasakah province, 8 km west of Al-Shaddadi, September 5, 2019.

As the official representative of the Defense Ministry Igor Konashenkov noted, the Americans are extracting oil in Syria with the help of equipment, bypassing their own sanctions.

Igor Konashenkov:

 “Under the protection of American military servicemen and employees of American PMCs, fuel trucks from the oil fields of Eastern Syria are smuggling to other states. In the event of any attack on such a caravan, special operations forces and US military aircraft are immediately called in to protect it,” he said.

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Top Assange Defense Account Deleted By Twitter

top-assange-defense-account-deleted-by-twitter

13-07-19 07:23:00,

By Caitlin Johnstone

One of the biggest Twitter accounts dedicated to circulating information and advocacy for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, @Unity4J, has been completely removed from the site. The operators of the account report that they have been given no reason for its removal by Twitter staff, and have received no response to their appeals.

Any Assange supporter active on Twitter will be familiar with the Unity4J account, which originated to help boost the wildly successful Unity4J online vigils in which well-known Assange defenders would appear to speak out against his persecution. As of this writing, the account has been gone for a day and a half.

“About 8:45am CST on Thursday July 11, one of our Unity4J Twitter team members went to retweet on the account and noticed that the account was no longer accessible,” reports pro-Assange activist Christy Dopf, one of the operators of the account. “When each of us also attempted to access the account we all received the same message ‘Account Suspended’. Twitter did not send us a reason or violation for the suspension. So an appeal was submitted. We did receive correspondence that Twitter got our request and the case is currently open. Unfortunately we do not have a timeline on how long this could take.”

I’m back on Twitter after the outage but @unity4J is still suspended – we did not receive an email or a reason for the suspension. Appeal process started. #FreeAssange #Unity4J pic.twitter.com/a14DqZaoGt

— ⏳ Christy Dopf ⏳ ✨🌓✨ (@ChristyMKD84) July 11, 2019

Speaking for myself as a vocal Assange supporter on Twitter, I can say that I’ve been following the @Unity4J account closely since its earliest days and I’ve never once seen it post anything other than highly professional-looking advocacy for Julian Assange. I’ve certainly never seen it post anything that could be construed as abusive, misleading, or otherwise in violation of any of Twitter’s posted rules.

This account’s deletion is just the latest in a long string of apparently biased actions against WikiLeaks and Assange by the immensely influential social media platform. That bias was made abundantly clear with Twitter’s ridiculous refusal to verify Assange while he was posting from his own account despite his undeniably being a significant public figure,

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Israel’s Defense Chief Says “No Choice But War” As Forces Build Along Gaza Border

Israel’s Defense Chief Says “No Choice But War” As Forces Build Along Gaza Border

24-10-18 07:53:00,

We reported over the weekend that Israel has mustered its largest build-up of tanks and armored personnel carriers since 2014 at a deployment area along the border with Gaza and that “all-out war” looks inevitable after weeks of heightened tensions with Hamas. This after special UN envoy for the Middle East, Nickolay Mladenov late last week warned the UN Security Council that “we remain on the brink of another potentially devastating conflict.”

It now appears Israel is ready to act, as on Monday Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman told Israeli parliament that he’s been left with “no choice” but to launch military action against Hamas militants. Last week rockets were launched from the Gaza Strip, with one landing dangerously near the densely populated city of Tel Aviv, and unrest along the border fence has continued largely unabated for months. 

Palestinians protesting along the Gaza border fence. Via Reuters.

During his bellicose speech before lawmakers, Lieberman threatened invasion of Gaza: “Wars are only conducted when there is no choice, and now there is no choice,” the defense minister said. He indicated that anything less than the “toughest response” to Hamas is not being considered as Tel Aviv has “exhausted the other options.”

He said of protests which Israeli forces have somewhat routinely fired upon as Palestinians approach the fence and a security “no-go” zone: “There is no popular uprising,” and added, “There is violence organized by Hamas. Fifteen thousand people don’t come by foot to the border at their own will. They come by bus and are paid.”

Lieberman’s accusation that Hamas pays large sums to protesters comes as international human rights groups have frequently decried Israel’s lose of live ammo to stop protesters from approaching the fence, which have over the past six months resulted in dozens of Palestinian casualties. 

The defense minister said further that Hamas “controls the levels of the flames,” but Israel can take deterrent and defensive measures, according to the Jerusalem Post. “I don’t believe in reaching an arrangement with Hamas,” he argued. “It hasn’t worked, doesn’t work and won’t work in the future.”

Israeli tanks staging at Gaza border,  » Lees verder

CIA Teams Up With Defense Industry to Undermine Trump’s Korea Negotiations

CIA Teams Up With Defense Industry to Undermine Trump’s Korea Negotiations

04-07-18 09:05:00,

In a new development that will shock no one, factions within the CIA attempted for the second time in just over a month to undermine President Donald Trump’s peace overtures towards North Korea by leaking information calculated to decrease confidence in Kim Jong Un’s willingness to earnestly negotiate.

On June 29, 2018, NBC News released a report quoting anonymous CIA officials who claimed that North Korea was increasing nuclear production at “secret sites” without providing any actual evidence for such claims. The report’s credibility is further weakened by the fact that it also cited reports from a think tank which has strong connections to the defense industry and other private special interests.

In disseminating their report, the CIA used NBC reporter Ken Dilanian as an outlet for leaks. As Disobedient Media previously reported, Dilanian was outed by the Intercept in 2014 as a CIA asset. In the aftermath of the disclosure, Dilanian’s previous employers at the Washington Tribune and Los Angeles Times disavowed the disgraced journalist. In at least one instance, the CIA’s instructions to Dilanian appear to have led to significant changes in a story that was eventually published in the Los Angeles Times.

Since that time, Dilanian has persisted in pushing articles written by former CIA officials who continue to perpetuate the “Trump-Russia” collusion narrative without any regard to facts, such as Steven Hall’s Washington Post article titled: “I was in the CIA. We wouldn’t trust a country whose leader did what Trump did.”

In the absence of hard evidence from the CIA to back their claims about North Korea, Dilanian cited the opinion of Clinton administration official Joel Wit and reports from 38north.org. 38north is a project run by the Henry L. Stimson Center. The Stimson Center’s Board of Directors includes individuals associated with organizations such as Northrop Grumman, the Boeing Company, Warburg Pincus, the Carnegie Endowment, Mercy Corps, The Council on Foreign Relations, the Department of Defense, the CIA and US Department of the Treasury. Their Partners include the George C. Marshall Foundation, Saudi Arabia’s Gulf Research Center and the Jinnah Institute.

Satellite images circulated by 38north claiming to show improvements to North Korea’s Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center appear to have been obtained from Airbus Defense and Space SAS,

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A National Defense Strategy Of Sowing Global Chaos

A National Defense Strategy Of Sowing Global Chaos

25-01-18 09:23:00,

Authored by Nicholas Davies via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

Presenting the 2018 National Defense Strategy of the United States on Friday at the Johns Hopkins University, Secretary of Defense James Mattis painted a picture of a dangerous world in which U.S. power – and all of the supposed “good” that it does around the world – is on the decline.

“Our competitive edge has eroded in every domain of warfare – air, land, sea, space, and cyberspace,” he said. “And it is continually eroding.”

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/20180124_us2.jpg

Known locations of U.S. military bases around the world (Source: Politico)

What he could have said instead is that the United States military is overextended in every domain, and that much of the chaos seen around the world is the direct result of past and current military adventurism. Further, he could have acknowledged, perhaps, that the erosion of U.S. influence has been the result of a series of self-inflicted blows to American credibility through foreign policy disasters such as 2003 invasion of Iraq.

There were also two important words hidden between the lines, but never mentioned by name, in the new U.S. National Defense Strategy: “empire” and “imperialism.”

It has long been taboo for U.S. officials and corporate media to speak of U.S. foreign policy as “imperialism,” or of the U.S.’s global military occupations and network of hundreds of military bases as an “empire.”  These words are on a long-standing blacklist of “banned topics” that U.S. official statements and mainstream U.S. media reports must never mention.

The streams of Orwellian euphemisms with which U.S. officials and media instead discuss U.S. foreign policy do more to obscure the reality of the U.S. role in the world than to describe or explain it, “hiding imperial interests behind ever more elaborate fig leaves,” as British historian A.J.P. Taylor described European imperialists doing the same a century ago.

As topics like empire, imperialism, and even war and peace, are censored and excised from political debate, U.S. officials, subservient media and the rest of the U.S. political class conjure up an illusion of peace for domestic consumption by simply not mentioning our country’s 291,000 occupation troops in 183 other countries or the 39,000 bombs and missiles dropped on our neighbors in Iraq,

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