Activists, Pirates team up with Barrett Brown’s Pursuance Project

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The Pursuance Project – Impactful, agile, secure civic collaboration

The pursuance system is the world’s first comprehensive framework for process democracy. That is, it allows individuals with no prior relationship to self-organize into robust, agile entities governed via a “proceduralism of agreement.” These entities, called pursuances, in turn engage and collaborate among themselves to whatever extent they choose, leading ultimately to a vast and formidable ecosystem of opposition to institutionalized injustice. (Excerpt from Project description)

This system will be populated on an invitation basis, beginning towards the end of 2017. But Barrett has initiated a collaboration with Pirate Parties InternationalRaymond Johansen, activist and member of the board of PPI is now in the process of populating several rooms in Mattermost, soon to begin onboarding people into an alpha version of the Pursuance System. PPI’s usage of and feedback on the software will help Pursuance’s software developers optimize it for our use cases. In the coming weeks activists, designers, artists, FOIA experts, investigative journalists, coders and developers will be invited to take part. In fact, at the time of writing projects have already started inside PPI’s Team.

To get an invitation you may contact Ray directly. Twitter or Facebook is fine. If you have his email address feel free to send him a request. Now lets hear from the main people themselves.

The framework described by Brown is quite extraordinary in that the vision is to empower people to create their own ‘pursuance’ and provide a platform to use their abilities in collaboration with others to attain specific outcomes. By doing so, they have the opportunity to scale up and potentially have a greater impact using the collaborative network.

Steve Phillips explains how he got involved with the Pursuance Project

Hi everyone! I’m Steve Phillips, lead developer and project manager of the Pursuance Project, started by Barrett Brown.

In March I learned that Barrett was out of jail and wanted to build an end-to-end encrypted environment to help make activists, journalists, and other groups more impactful by enabling them to coordinate effectively online, which sounded not just awesome but has a ton in common with what I’d been building for the last year and a half, including what I presented at DEF CON 2 years ago.

So I reached out to him, flew to Texas to meet him, and 2 days later he put me in charge of building the Pursuance System (which you can read about here; somewhat more technical intro here)!

As Barrett wrote at PursuanceProject.org, our ultimate goal is to produce “a vast and formidable ecosystem of opposition to institutionalized injustice.”

I’ve been programming for 8 years, have been using Linux for almost 16 years, and I have extensive experience both building user-friendly, high-quality software and managing small teams of developers.

I am VERY excited to be working with Pirate Party folks and would love for you all to be among the first people in the world to use the Pursuance System as we build it. Let me know what tools you need to change the world and I will do whatever I can to provide them.

Right now we’ve launched an early version of the Pursuance chat feature as a standalone app — LeapChat, which anyone can use by visiting LeapChat.org and inviting people to the secure room you get redirected to, resulting in an end-to-end encrypted chat session. Any feedback you have for which features should next be added to LeapChat would be very helpful!

The core of the first version of Pursuance that we’ll be launching is essentially a task management system built for large groups that will do things like allow you to specify which skills are necessary to complete a task, then have the software automatically find people with all the skills necessary to complete that task and ask them if they’d like to do it! This enables Pursuance scale to large groups better than anything else that currently exists.

We believe that the Internet should be amazing at enabling large groups of like-minded people to join forces to combat injustice… but it isn’t. We’re here to change that.

Barrett Brown’s vision for the Pursuance Project

Extracts from: Barrett Brown’s Pursuance Project by v4vapid

When asked about his future projects, Brown outlines a vision for journalists and bloggers to better share information by creating what he calls a ‘process democracy platform’. This project has been in the works since 2009, before his incarceration, and with the help of trusted collaborators Brown continues to work towards creating a revolutionary crowd sourcing collaboration. Collaborations will occur between institutions, non-profits , academics and even citizen journalists.

“The way [the pursuance] system works, it doesn’t matter if on the margins quality declines, because on the margins, these people are free to bring on people, but they still have to handle them. So if it’s data gathering, for instance, if you’re a journalist or you’re running a crowd-sourced project, and you bring on a few people, each person who’s bringing on people obviously has an impetus to bring on actual quality people to the best of their ability because they have to deal with them, and bad information, useless information, that comes out of these distant [peripheries] on the system are not going to make it up the submission, and there’s a whole mechanism for all of that.” – Barrett Brown

“So that was the original impetus. There are a lot of other features that make this work for different things. There’s a great mass of people out there who are tweeting and commenting, and they’re upset, and there’s some portion who are very honest people who are capable, who are knowledgeable, but who are not being provided with (a) the ability to help and (b) the ability to rise. If you present people the ability to do things correctly, and by doing things correctly, rise to a position where they have the ability to do things on a larger scale, and if you make it apparent that that ability is there, and if we provide examples of it working and provide a degree of leadership, and frankly, propaganda as to why the time has come for this kind of thing, then it will work.” – Barrett Brown

To get updates on the progress of the overall project you can sign up on this page The Pursuance Project

by Kitty Hundal

 

#OPINION – Rampant Intellectual Dishonesty and its consequences

From every corner of my world I hear people saying, and getting away with it, that Wikileaks helped Manning steal documents. Saying that it’s a crime and that Assange must face justice. Everybody knows thats not at all why.

Wikileaks have released over 10 million documents, parts of which has embarrassed the powerful by clearly showing criminal behaviour by those that are supposed to represent the people. It’s a warning dressed as revenge, pure and simple. It’s chilling effect cannot be overlooked.

Anyone claiming to actually believe Assange is arrested for attempting to hack a password is a liar. A few lie to themselves or suffer from complete and utter ignorance – while others blatantly & willfully bend the truth beyond recognition.

If your’e a journalist, you should understand that these glaringly provable lies not only hurts your credibility but all of the 4th estate’s ability to hold the powerful accountable. Your’e aiding and abetting the creation of totalitarian rule. Not born of law, but of greed.

About *The Willfully Blatantly Intellectually Dishonest* I say:

Forgive them Not for They Know full well what They are Doing.

Many are running around saying Mr. Assange is not a journalist. Its not only laughable, its downright ridiculous – coming from someone that breaks the only unwritten law about journalism we all tended to agreed on:

– To confront and undress the corrupt and criminal – by reporting on it

Dressing up this “rendition” as a charge of hacking, (CFAA), that will only give Assange 5 years in jail and not hurt journalism – is pure and utter bullshit and you have to a moron to think we swallow that you actually believe what you are serving up. It’s a narrative, is all.

Americans are specialists in constructing narratives making even the worst crimes against humanity look like humanitarian expeditions. The country has basically taken the dressing up of pigs to a whole new level whereby it seems, from the outside, it has become the national sport.

At some point history will treat you badly, of that I’m sure, but your victims are paying the price now. We, the concerned citizens of the world. are guilty of letting you get away with it. I feel shame, in myself and my fellow man. We are the “the submissive void” of our time.

 

Raymond Johansen – April 2019

Hacktivist Culture: Witness Against Torture

Raymond Johansen, a torture victim and co-founder of Hacktivist Culture, speaks out against global torture campaigns by various governments, in particular the US and the UK.

Potkaars podcasts: 2019-01-14 Witness against Torture – Raymond Johansen

Kitty Hundal, a target of state persecution and co-founder of Hacktivist Culture: Personal Statement on Torture.

Countries that are signatories to the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment are required, as per Article 2 of the Convention, to make torture a criminal offense in their countries and most, including the US, Canada and UK, have done so.

Article 2

1. Each State Party shall take effective legislative, administrative, judicial or other measures to prevent acts of torture in any territory under its jurisdiction.

2. No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.

3. An order from a superior officer or a public authority may not be invoked as a justification of torture.

18 U.S. Code § 2340A – Torture

(a) Offense.—

Whoever outside the United States commits or attempts to commit torture shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both, and if death results to any person from conduct prohibited by this subsection, shall be punished by death or imprisoned for any term of years or for life.

UK Criminal Justice Act 1988 c. 33 Part XI Torture Section 134

134 Torture.

(1)A public official or person acting in an official capacity, whatever his nationality, commits the offence of torture if in theUnited Kingdom or elsewhere he intentionally inflicts severe pain or suffering on another in the performance or purported performance of his official duties.

***

(3)It is immaterial whether the pain or suffering is physical or mental and whether it is caused by an act or an omission.

Canada Criminal Code (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46)

Torture

269.1 (1) Every official, or every person acting at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of an official, who inflicts torture on any other person is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding fourteen years.

Yet renditions and Black sites like Guantanamo as well as secret Black sites continue to proliferate both within the countries that are signatories, in violation of their domestic laws/due process, and on foreign soil, in direct contravention of the Convention.

Chicago’s “Black Site” Police Scandal Is Primed to Explode AgainChicago’s “Black Site” Police Scandal Is Primed to Explode Again

Homan Square detention facility is reportedly like something out of “Homeland.”

On the basis of internal Chicago police records, the Guardian‘s Spencer Ackerman reported in February that officers had brought thousands of detainees (mostly black, often low-level drug offenders) to Homan Square, where they were essentially “disappeared”—held and questioned without access to attorneys or phone calls. Of 7,185 people detained there since 2004, Ackerman wrote, just 68 had access to a lawyer or were able to make their whereabouts known to family or friends—about 65 percent of the detentions took place after May 16, 2011, when Emanuel took office.

“US must stop policy of impunity for the crime of torture”- UN rights expert“US must stop policy of impunity for the crime of torture”- UN rights expert

“By failing to prosecute the crime of torture in CIA custody, the US is in clear violation of the Convention against Torture and is sending a dangerous message of complacency and impunity to officials in the US and around the world.”

Many of these torture sites have professional medical and psychiatric/psychological personnel on staff who participate actively, not only in developing and advancing the torture programs but in participating directly as well.

This is a direct violation of the Nuremberg Code established to prevent further horrors like those which occurred during the Holocaust against the Jews in Nazi Germany.

Nuremberg Betrayed: Human Experimentation and the CIA Torture Program

Based on an analysis of thousands of pages of documents and years of research, Physicians for Human Rights shows that the CIA’s post-9/11 torture program constituted an illegal, unethical regime of experimental research on unwilling human subjects, testing the flawed hypothesis that torture could aid interrogators in breaking the resistance of detainees. In “Nuremberg Betrayed: Human Experimentation and the CIA Torture Program,” PHR researchers show that CIA contract psychologists James Mitchell and Bruce Jessen created a research program in which health professionals designed and applied torture techniques and collected data on torture’s effects. This constitutes one of the gravest breaches of medical ethics by U.S. health personnel since the Nuremberg Code was developed in the wake of Nazi medical atrocities committed during World War Two.

In addition, the Intelligence Agencies of many countries are being given legal carte blanche to engage in “Disrupt and Destroy” campaigns. Campaigns which are often engaged in, without judicial oversight, or oversight which is exercised at the discretion of the Agency and without transparency, abuses would inevitably occur. This is a historical fact.

Canada Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 (S.C. 2015, c. 20)Canada Anti-terrorism Act, 2015 (S.C. 2015, c. 20)

12.1 (1) If there are reasonable grounds to believe that a particular activity constitutes a threat to the security of Canada, the Service may take measures, within or outside Canada, to reduce the threat.

Limits

(2) The measures shall be reasonable and proportional in the circumstances, having regard to the nature of the threat, the nature of the measures and the reasonable availability of other means to reduce the threat.

Warrant

(3) The Service shall not take measures to reduce a threat to the security of Canada if those measures will contravene a right or freedom guaranteed by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms or will be contrary to other Canadian law, unless the Service is authorized to take them by a warrant issued under section 21.1.

So, what does this tell us about the current state of our society and it’s approach towards Torture?

It tells us that our governments have gone rogue. They are openly violating domestic and international law, at the behest of the global elite and their military industrial complex, which is expanding by the day.

It tells us we are being ruled by criminals who hold the reins of power and will never hold themselves accountable for their own crimes.

It tells us that We, the People, need to act to hold the bastions of power accountable for their crimes. We need to do this through the enforcement of transparency as well as by becoming the media so that we can enlighten and educate the unaware. Then, we need to use that knowledge and education to rebuild our democracies and social infrastructures into healthy ones. Ones which represent the best interests of the people as a whole, rein in and limit the powers of the elite, while also enshrining individual and social rights as natural, inviolable rights.

by Kitty Hundal

The ‘Define Dignity Initiative’ by Matt DeHart

By Matt DeHart, originally published in The Gad About Town.

This is the fourth article in a series of prison essays by Matt DeHart published on Mark Aldrich’s site. The first: “You don’t act like an American,” the second: “Hospitality in Mexico,” and Matt’s third: “Shattered.”

Matt DeHart’s voice is one worth listening to. In “Defining Dignity,” he challenges us all to put meaning—and action—behind that commandment that is so often expressed and so little heeded: “Love thy neighbor as thyself,” which of course is found in the Book of Matthew.

The essay published below is one of the few public statements he has made. It was sent to me by his mother, Leann DeHart, with the request that it is published as written.
Continue reading

Remembrance Day

by Bailey Lamon, original post on Medium
Anarchist Pirate. Geek. Social worker. Activist. Writes sometimes.

November 11th is Remembrance Day, also known as the anniversary of the ending of World War One, and in many countries a day devoted to honouring those who were killed in various wars over the last century. Additionally, part of the original purpose of Remembrance Day is to acknowledge the horrific reality of war…indeed, the words “Never Again” are commonly spoken in this regard. War is a nightmare, and so many of our ancestors fought and were killed in war, and it is imperative that we remember who they were, what they sacrificed, and for what.

If you’ve ever spoken to war veterans, particularly those from World War One and Two, they likely told you that they were fighting for freedom. They were fighting for the freedom to live in peace, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of choice and association. Essentially, the freedom to live our lives however we want, without fear of violence and repression from the powers that be. Many of our grandparents and great grandparents fought against the Nazis in World War Two, and if you ask them why they did it, most (if not all) would say that they did it so that future generations would not have to live in a society like the Third Reich. Thanks to them, the Nazis lost.

This piece is not about the fact that governments regularly send poor people to their deaths over control of natural resources such as oil, or that wars such as that in Vietnam and Iraq were illegal, based on secrecy and blatant lies, and had nothing to do with a valiant quest for democracy and human rights.

This piece has nothing to do with the fact that so-called “peaceful” nations such as Canada sell billions of dollars worth of weapons to very non-peaceful countries like Saudi Arabia and Israel, who are literally committing genocide against Yemenis and Palestinians as we speak. This piece has nothing to do with the fact that the Military Industrial Complex has more influence on “democracy”, public policy and political life and discourse than politicians and voters combined.

This piece also has nothing to do with the fact that those who lose the most in war, the highest number of casualties, are the innocent civilians who have nothing to do with geopolitics and did nothing to deserve losing their homes, their loved ones, and their lives…nor the fact that Libyan and Syrian homelands have been and continue to be destroyed and yet privileged, comfortable westerners complain about the “Islamist” refugees coming in to their countries, wanting nothing more than a life.

No, this piece has nothing to do with any of these things.

This is about Remembrance. This is about respect. This is about what we mean when we talk about respecting those who lost their lives for what so many of us take fore granted.

I see so many people focused on the formalities of Remembrance Day, but not at all focused on its original intent. I see so many people talking about the importance of wearing a red poppy around this time, but very few talking about what that poppy actually represents and the important lessons we are supposed to carry with us. I see A LOT of people talking about respecting the military, spouting off meaningless statements like “support our troops” and yet, when anybody questions what we’re actually supporting, they are quick to throw around accusations of “disrespect”, as if being able to question power and dominant narratives isn’t part of living in a free society and exactly the thing our ancestors were fighting for us to be able to do.

It’s bullshit.

And you know what? I believe that many of our ancestors would think it’s bullshit too.

Why is it that people are so quick to get angry over the white poppy, which simply represents Peace, calling it “disrespectful” and “insulting” as if violence and bloodshed are the only aspects of Remembrance worth acknowledging? As I previously mentioned, Remembrance Day is not only about remembering the soldiers who died but also making sure that their deaths are not in vain, that striving for world peace should be one of our highest priorities so that future generations can avoid the exact horror that they experienced. What exactly is disrespectful about that?

The truth is, there is NOTHING disrespectful about it, but as a society we have lost touch with the original meaning of Remembrance, and any kind of change to the tradition that is Remembrance Day (in this case the red poppy) is labeled a threat before anyone has a chance to get educated on what the white poppy actually means. It’s as if people think that the white poppy means “fuck all veterans”, but what it actually means, is Peace.

Peace.

If you feel threatened or insulted by a call for Peace, you need to seriously reconsider what it is you stand for, and how much you actually value the lessons taught to us by the men and women you believe fought for your basic freedoms.

The same goes with our views around war and the degree to which we support the military. Questioning the military as an institution and questioning its agendas set out by political leaders, and actively speaking out against those agendas is again, NOT a “fuck you” to your loved ones who are veterans or currently in the military. It is a “fuck you” to the exact thing that has a high probability of getting them killed, seriously injured, and most definitely traumatized for life.

My own father was in the Canadian military for over 30 years. Every year around Remembrance Day he puts on his uniform, goes out into the public and sells poppies. He participates in ceremonies in uniform and is a member of his local Legion. He is also in agreement with my anti-war views and has never taken my opposition to war as an insult, because being anti-war is not an insult. It is a stance that many of us take BECAUSE of the reality of war, BECAUSE of the bloodshed, BECAUSE of the fact that so many people have lost their lives in battle over the years, and BECAUSE we respect human life, including the lives of those in the military. I support the troops as human beings who deserve more than death, injury and trauma. I do not support the institution and political system that sees them as disposable and treats them as such.

And saying this openly is exactly what my ancestors wanted me to be able to do. Yours wanted the same for you. I guarantee it.

So check yourself next time you accuse an anti-war activist of shitting all over dead soldiers. Check yourself next time you whine about a differently coloured poppy. Check yourself next time you get caught up in the thinking that freedom of thought and freedom of speech aren’t human rights that your ancestors fought Nazis over, and in many cases, gave their lives for. Check yourself before you support current and future wars and imperialist invasions, and stand by the military without question. Check yourself and ask what kind of world you want for future generations…do we Remember those who died in war because we want more war? Or do we Remember them because we want to learn from the devastation that they went through, so that we can work for peace? Check yourself and ask, does “Never Again” actually mean something, or are they just empty words?

Let us never forget.

The Recent Defamation of #WikiLeaks and #JulianAssange, Part 2

The Recent Defamation of #WikiLeaks and #JulianAssange, Part 1 introduced the topic of the recently published AP leaks related to WikiLeaks and built a case around the first document being fraudulent or at the very least unauthenticated.

This case was built around the document properties provided by AP in their attempt to authenticate the document, the context in which the document appeared on the scene as well as the person WikiLeaks believes created the document, Sigurdur Thordarson.

In Part 1, I concluded that WikiLeaks assessment was the one most likely to be correct given all of the facts that are publicly available to us. That is, the document was most likely a forgery created by Sigurdur Thordarson and the allegation that it “proved” Julian Assange was trying to flee to Russia was just a baseless confabulation.

Note that the Russian Embassy released a statement on September 26, 2018 (two days before Part 1 was published) confirming WikiLeaks denial. So this entire issue is now done.

The embassy has never engaged with Ecuadorean colleagues, or with anyone else, in discussions on any kind of Russian participation in ending Mr Assange’s stay within the diplomatic mission of Ecuador.– Julian Assange and Russia’s UK embassy. The Guardian, September 24, 2018

Ivan Volodin, at the Russian embassy in London, responds to a Guardian article reporting that Russian diplomats held secret talks about helping Julian Assange flee the UK

Israel Shamir has been directly associated with the document as allegedly having been the recipient who was responsible for obtaining a Russian visa for Julian Assange. There is no evidence to support this, given that the document itself isn’t authenticated properly, is a forgery, according to WikiLeaks, and the Russians state unequivocally that there has never been any discussion with anyone regarding “ending Mr. Assange’s stay within the diplomatic mission of Ecuador“.

The AP (Associated Press) article also claims that Shamir has stated the following in a telephone interview:

Shamir told the AP he was plagued by memory problems and couldn’t remember delivering Assange’s letter or say whether he eventually got the visa on Assange’s behalf.

“I can’t possibly exclude that it happened,” Shamir said in a telephone interview. “I have a very vague memory of those things.”  

Shamir’s memory appeared sharper during a January 20, 2011, interview with Russian News Service radio — a Moscow-based station now known as Life Zvuk, or Life Sound. Shamir said he’d personally brokered a Russian visa for Assange, but that it had come too late to rescue him from the sex crimes investigation.

However, they don’t provide a reference link to the interview so that statement can be verified, nor has Shamir confirmed the statement they attribute to him in the telephone interview anywhere that I could find.

What Israel Shamir said or didn’t say is now irrelevant anyway given the tweet from the Russian Embassy and the statement by the Russian Embassy in the Guardian, quoted above.

His last blog post related to Assange is this one: The Long Captivity of Julian Assange by Israel Shamir • June 21, 2018 

Given that the conspiracy theories surrounding his part of the story are fascinating (actually laughable), I feel obligated to rehash this part of the story for the sole purpose of demonstrating how disinformation campaigns like this work.

Part 1 has provided you with some insight on how “evidence” is concocted and misrepresented deceptively as the foundation of a disinformation campaign.

While I didn’t present it in that context, it is actually how it works.

So, now, in the case of Shamir’s part of the story:

Shamir was one of many journalists with access to portions of the WikiLeaks database for journalistic research purposes. He had no formal relationship with WikiLeaks other than that, nor was there any long term relationship between him and Julian Assange, according to WikiLeaks.

WikiLeaks statement that was given to, but not used by, the UK satirical current-affairs magazine, Private Eye:

Israel Shamir has never worked or volunteered for WikiLeaks, in any manner, whatsoever. He has never written for WikiLeaks or any associated organization, under any name and we have no plan that he do so. He is not an ‘agent’ of WikiLeaks. He has never been an employee of WikiLeaks and has never received monies from WikiLeaks or given monies to WikiLeaks or any related organization or individual. However, he has worked for the BBC, Haaretz, and many other reputable organizations.

It is false that Shamir is ‘an Assange intimate’. He interviewed Assange (on behalf of Russian media), as have many journalists. He took a photo at that time and has only met with WikiLeaks staff (including Assange) twice. It is false that ‘he was trusted with selecting the 250,000 US State Department cables for the Russian media’ or that he has had access to such at any time.

Shamir was able to search through a limited portion of the cables with a view to writing articles for a range of Russian media. The media that subsequently employed him did so of their own accord and with no intervention or instruction by WikiLeaks.

We do not have editorial control over the of hundreds of journalists and publications based on our materials and it would be wrong for us to seek to do so. We do not approve or endorse the writings of the world’s media. We disagree with many of the approaches taken in analyzing our material.

Index did contact WikiLeaks as have many people and organisations do for a variety of reasons. The quote used here is not complete. WikiLeaks also asked Index for further information on this subject. Most of these rumors had not, and have not, been properly corroborated. WikiLeaks therefore asked Index to let us know if they had received any further information on the subject. This would have helped WikiLeaks conduct further inquiries. We did not at the time, and never have, received any response.

END

One photograph was taken with Shamir and Assange together, a common practice when people meet well-known people.

Julian_and_Shamir-600x450

Deception:

“Shamir has a years-long friendship with Assange, and was privy to the contents of tens of thousands of US diplomatic cables months before WikiLeaks made public the full cache. Such was Shamir’s controversial nature that Assange introduced him to WikiLeaks staffers under a false name. Known for views held by many to be antisemitic, Shamir aroused the suspicion of several WikiLeaks staffers – myself included – when he asked for access to all cable material concerning “the Jews”, a request which was refused.” – Israel Shamir and Julian Assange’s cult of machismo by James Ball 

The claim that Shamir was a close associate of Assange is denied by WikiLeaks. The only “evidence” provided to support it is this single image of them sitting together. By that absurd standard, Tommy Douglas, father of Canada’s Health Care system was my bestie because there’s one picture of me with him when I met him as a teenager and was a member of the New Democratic Youth.

Absurd as it is, this deception has become the foundation for numerous confabulations to discredit Assange using the Guilt by Association fallacy as an Argumentum Ad Hominem attack. This demagogic style of argumentation is a key component of any Propaganda arsenal.

One example of this is the false allegation that, Assange is allegedly antisemitic and right-wing because he allegedly has a close, long term relationship with Shamir who is allegedly an antisemite and holocaust denier.

” I wrote hundreds of pages on the Jewish topic, but for the benefit of the reader I’ll sum it up. Naturally, as a son of Jewish parents and a man living in the Jewish state and deeply and intimately involved with Jewish culture, I harbour no hate to a Jew because he is a Jew. I doubt many people do. However I did and do criticise various aspects of Jewish Weltanschauung like so many Jewish and Christian thinkers before me, or even more so for I witnessed crimes of the Jewish state that originated in this worldview.

As for the accusation of “Holocaust denial”, my family lost too many of its sons and daughters for me to deny the facts of Jewish tragedy, but I do deny its religious salvific significance implied in the very term ‘Holocaust’; I do deny its metaphysical uniqueness, I do deny the morbid cult of Holocaust and I think every God-fearing man, a Jew, a Christian or a Muslim should reject it as Abraham rejected and smashed idols. I deny that it is good to remember or immortalise such traumatic events, and I wrote many articles against modern obsession with massacres, be it Jewish holocaust of 1940s, Armenian massacre of 1915, Ukrainian “holodomor”, Polish Katyn, Khmer Rouge etc. Poles, Armenians, Ukrainians understood me, so did Jews – otherwise I would be charged with the crime of factual denial which is known to the Israeli law.” – Israel Shamir 

It’s the right wing extremist element in Israel and their supporters in the Israel Lobby, that is pushing this propaganda that any criticism of Israel constitutes “antisemitism”. Jeremy Corbyn, a man who has a long history of fighting against fascism and antisemitism is also being falsely accused of being an “antisemite” by that same element.

To understand this issue in depth, I recommend the recent Al Jazeera film, The Lobby (UK) which exposes the dark underbelly of the Lobby in the UK.

Segments of the US version, which has been banned, have also been leaked to various sites.

So, back to the main topic, and to summarize this section:

  1. the disinformation is spread about Shamir that he is an alleged antisemite, holocaust denier which implies he’s right wing
  2. a foundation is built by spreading that falsehood everywhere
  3. that becomes the foundation for disinformation attacks on Assange by association, that is, since Assange has “friends” who are allegedly right wing,antisemite, holocaust deniers then he must be as well.

The claim that Shamir hadaccess to thousands of US diplomatic cablesis based on the above allegations by James Ball, a WikiLeaks intern from November 23, 2010 to December 15, 2010. In February, 2011 he became a full-time journalist for the Guardian. The job with the Guardian gave him an unprecedented platform from which he could establish his false narrative as an alleged witness to Shamir’s activities in relation to WikiLeaks and Assange. That narrative consisted of exaggerations, spins, and, according to Shamir, outright lies, intended to give the false impression that Shamir had more access to the cables than other journalists.

WikiLeaks, in their statement quoted above, has stated clearly that his access was the same as that of other journalists.

If Shamir had unrestricted access to the cables (implied by Ball), why would he have to ask Ball for cables about “the Jews”, as Ball also claims? He wouldn’t have to.

The “interest” in those cables appears to have been a fabrication by James Ball, as a set-up, so that a foundation could be created for later allegations. Ball, and the other media writing these stories, simply ignore the inherent contradictions in Ball’s story when they use it as a foundation for later false allegations.

Shamir states that he received cables related to Minsk and Moscow from James Ball and that Ball offered them to him on his own initiative, not at Shamir’s request.

You [James Ball] did it even twice: just before my departure you came to me on your own initiative and kindly handed me “a better file on Jews”, twice as big as the previous one. Apparently lying and cheating is your second nature by now.

Deception:

Ball continues to build on this smear:

Still later, when damning evidence emerged that Shamir had handed cables material to the dictator of Belarus – a man he holds in high esteem – to assist his persecution of opposition activists, Assange shamefully refused to investigate. – Israel Shamir and Julian Assange’s cult of machismo by James Ball 

This part of the story was built on the foundational false narrative established by Ball re: the “ access to all cable material concerning “the Jews”” and the “was privy to the contents of tens of thousands of US diplomatic cables” plus the following image was “evidence” that Shamir had been in Minsk.

Shamir was photographed by an Interfax photographer on the steps of the Belarus Presidential Administation Building in Minsk earlier today.

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In this CounterPunch article, Shamir explains what he was doing in Minsk (International Observer to the Elections) and his position on Belarus. His mother is from Minsk which explains his interest in the region: The Minsk Election in a Wikileaks Mirror by Israel Shamir

This particular story is quite complex but has been examined in depth in this article: The Guardian and WikiLeaks, Hazel Press, January 19, 2013. To understand this issue I recommend you read the article.

The author, after an in-depth analysis concludes that the allegation that Shamir handed cables over to Lukashenko to damage the Belarus opposition is baseless. There isn’t a shred of hard evidence to support it. This image combined with articles which appear to be based on nothing more than unsupported assertions, assumptions, exaggerations and spin, are the combined total of the evidence.

The article is a recommended read to get a solid grasp of what happened, when and why.

One of the very interesting points made in the article is to demonstrate how one false allegation gets built by using other false allegations as their foundation. You can see this by clicking through the links the articles reference to try to locate the original source. When you find the original source you can see that the entire narrative is built on sand since the original sources don’t offer any evidence of their claims.

Guilt by association is used to smear Assange here as well. Once the narrative was established by Ball, that Shamir had allegedly handed cables over to the Belarus government, led by Lukashenko, Assange and WikiLeaks were then falsely accused of putting dissidents at risk.

The facts, according to the Hazel Press article above, and which are substantiated, are that Charter 97, a human rights group in Belarus, had received the cables and had published articles criticizing the Lukashenko regime. The web site was DDOSd and the Belarus police raided their offices and arrested them. According to the article, this is likely how the regime got access to the cables. Andrei Sannikov, the leader of the Opposition was imprisoned by Lukashenko.

In addition, Andrei Sannikov’s  sister, Irina, main spokesperson of the Free Belarus campaign, invited Julian Assange to the screening of their film, Europe’s Last Dictator. Assange had been helping Belarussian dissidents in the background.

“Europe’s Last Dictator” in Belarus Q&A session with Julian Assange,  part 1 of 2

If one wanted to nitpick this tempest in a teapot, one certainly could, but in the end it would be a pointless exercise. As I said in Part 1, even if it were all true and the motivation was to escape any US extradition attempt by going to Russia (and there is no foundation here to indicate that it is) … so what?

After Ecuador granted Assange Ecuadorian citizenship & made him a diplomatic staffer to the embassy in London, Ecuadorian officials may well have discussed amongst themselves what diplomatic posting to give him, on the assumption that the UK response would be to declare him “persona non-grata” (and thus trigger Vienna Convention rules about allowing sufficient time for diplomats rejected in this same way to leave the country safely).

However, as eye-witness Craig Murray has already told us in his recent blog post on this topic “it is a fact that Julian  directly ruled out the possibility of going to Russia as undesirable“.

The fact that this document referred to in this article and the others which appeared on Twitter today do indicate that Ecuadorian officials wanted to send Assange to Russia, are quite meaningless, since Assange rejected the suggestion.

“There is a ministerial agreement [at the Foreign Ministry of Ecuador], according to which Julian Assange was appointed Ecuador’s diplomatic representative in Moscow,” Vintimilla said.

 

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And last but not least, you know the propagandists are desperate when they’ve sunk so low that all they have left is to try to divert the discussion of serious political and civil rights issues into personal attacks about Julian Assange’s personal hygiene and threaten Embassy Cat.

The inevitable outcome of all of this confabulation is to support the RussiaGate confabulation that WikiLeaks and Julian Assange are allegedly in cahoots with the Russians to undermine the US. There is no evidence that demonstrates any connection between Assange and the Russians or WikiLeaks and the Russians, that would support this narrative, despite repeated attempts to create the false impression that there is.

In my humble opinion, the US is doing an excellent job of undermining themselves, as is Russia and numerous other countries around the world. None of those countries actually need any help from anyone when it comes to undermining their own democracies, economic and social systems, even if they’re getting that “help” from each other. Which they probably are.

All WikiLeaks and Julian Assange have done is expose these governments own words and deeds to the people. For the first time in history, we can see globally and first hand, the destruction that is being wreaked on our societies by the global elite working in collusion with lawless governments that have gone rogue.

In order to clearly understand the problem, you have to ignore the MSM Propaganda narratives and look at the actual facts. Thanks to Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, people are starting to understand this and have actually been enabled to do this.

This is what many of the Independent and Alternative media sites have been doing and it’s why they have much larger followings on Social Media than MSM sites. It’s also why they’re being mass-censored by Google, Facebook and now Twitter is following suit. It’s a last ditch desperate attempt to save the dying MSM and maintain control over the propaganda narratives.

When you understand the problem, you can work on the solution.

 

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