In his most extended interview in months, Julian Assange speaks to Democracy Now! from inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he has been holed up for nearly six months. Assange vowed WikiLeaks would persevere despite attacks against it. On Tuesday, the European Commission announced that the credit card company Visa did not break the European Union’s anti-trust rules by blocking donations to WikiLeaks. “Since the blockade was erected in December 2010, WikiLeaks has lost 95 percent of donations that were attempted to be transferred to us over that period . . . our rightful and natural growth, our ability to publish as much as we would like, our ability to defend ourselves and our sources has been diminished by that blockade.” Assange also speaks about his new book, Cypherpunks: Freedom and the Future of the Internet. “The mass surveillance and mass interception that is occurring to all of us now who use the Internet is also a mass transfer of power from individuals into extremely sophisticated state and private intelligence organizations and their cronies,” he says. Assange also discusses the United States’ targeting of WikiLeaks. “The Pentagon is maintaining a line that WikiLeaks inherently as an institution, that tells military and governmental whistleblowers to step forward with information, is a crime. They allege that we are criminal moving forward,” Assange says. “Now the new interpretation of the Espionage Act that the government is trying to hammer into the legal system, and which the department of justice is complicit in, would mean the end of national security journalism in the United States” (29 November 2012)’.
Arguably, without the actions of Bradley Manning, WikiLeaks would be an unknown website today and Assange merely unknown white-haired Ozzie. Alas, now Assange is holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London . . .
The Associated Press explains: ‘In this courtroom sketch, Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, center, describes a layout of his pretrial confinement cell in a Quantico, Va., Marine Corps brig while testifying at a pretrial hearing in Fort Meade, Md. on Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012’.
The AP continues that ‘Manning’s trial was set to begin Feb. 4. But [Military judge Col. Denise] Lind says pretrial proceedings will push the start date back to either March 16 or March 18. The hearing is to determine whether the highly restrictive conditions Manning experienced for nine months were justified. The defense claims the restrictions were so punishing that the case should be dismissed. Two psychiatrists have testified that the brig commander kept Manning tightly confined despite their recommendations to ease them. The 24-year-old is charged with 22 offenses, including aiding the enemy. He could get life in prison’.
 “Pfc. Bradley Manning’s trial delayed in WikiLeaks case” AP (02 December 2012). http://www.bostonherald.com/news/national/general/view/20121202pfc_bradley_mannings_trial_delayed_in_wikileaks_case/srvc=home&position=recent.