‘Afshin Rattansi goes underground on when WikiLeaks met Google. Julian Assange discusses the meeting he had in 2011 with Eric Schmidt, then a top executive and now chairman of Google, and 3 others. He says the meeting was nominally over a book that was being written, which was published and had pre-publication endorsements from the likes of Tony Blair and Henry Kissinger, but the question he wanted to know was why was this book being written? He examines the networks behind Google, and their ‘in-house state department’ Google ideas, and reveals that they are pushing the position that the State should control what is and is not published, to the extent of a state body overseeing whistleblowers that they have to go through before they can release any material. He says that Google is in bed with the state department, citing as an example that the girlfriend of Eric Schmidt contacted him regarding arranging a meeting with Hilary Clinton. He also points out that the argument the US military use against WikiLeaks, that the publication of cables could theoretically cause harm, was undermined when the general charged with investigating any harm caused by WikiLeaks testified under oath at the trial of Chelsea Manning that they couldn’t find a single person that had been harmed. He also talks about the mistakes he believe the Guardian made, and how HBGary tendered $2 million a month to attack WikiLeaks and Glen Greenwald. He talks about some of the more recent publications he has made, such as FinFisher, a cyberweapon which can hijack mobile phones and turn on the microphone, and can infect massive amounts of computers by putting itself in the major gateway of a country or ISP. He warns whilst people may be suspicious of the intentions of the NSA and the like regarding the internet, associations you may perceive to be working the other way are funded by the same players. He also points out that the amount of people with security clearances in the US has more than doubled since 2010, with 6 million people now part of this ‘state within a state’ who are subject to extra laws and requirements that are classified – ‘an extremely alarming phenomenon’. Published on Sep 22, 2014′.
‘Edward Snowden’s revelations about the activities of NSA forced him to go on the run and seek sanctuary from US intelligence agencies. But it also won him a lot of support and praise. Just yesterday he received the Sam Adams prize for ‘Integrity in Intelligence’. RT welcomes whistleblowers and activists Jesselyn Radack, Thomas Andrews Drake, Ray McGovern and Coleen Rowley in the studio. They saw the whistleblower in Moscow and presented him with the award (10 Oct 2013)’.
The good people of Wikipedia inform us that the ‘Sam Adams Award is given annually by the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence, a group of retired CIA officers, to an intelligence professional who has taken a stand for integrity and ethics. It is named after Samuel A. Adams, a CIA whistleblower during the Vietnam War, and takes the physical form of a “corner-brightener candlestick”. Many recipients have been whistleblowers’. Today, as the New Cold War is being waged behind the scenes, Snowden seems to have become a symbolic figure that epitomizes the new balance of power in the making . . .
Hearings are underway on the case of John Kiriakou, a former CIA official turned whistleblower. He first told the world about waterboarding in secret prisons, but scandals like that might never break again of lawmakers on Capitol Hill have their say. Congress is on a mission to silence journalists from ever publishing classified information and, in fact, want to make doing so a crime under the Espionage Act. Jesselyn Radack, National Security & Human Rights Director of the Government Accountability Project, joins RT’s Liz Wahl to explain what that could mean for the freedom of press in America (24 July 2012).
The Occupy movement has united hundreds of thousands across the world in protest against economic and social injustice. In this episode, key Occupy activists talk global finance, politics, and direct action. The former Deutsche Bank building inLondonplays host to this week’s discussion, which sees Julian discuss the origins, targets, and future of the Occupy movement with five high profile activists. The roots of the movement lie in the growing outrage many felt in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis. However, according to Alexa O’Brien from OccupyNew Yorkand US Day of Rage, they are also responding to a “Global Political Crisis, because our institutions no longer function.” Aaron Peters from Occupy London agrees that political failure is a “global phenomenon”, with power shifting to unaccountable non-democratic institutions. However, the last word goes to David Graeber from Occupy New York, who jokes “there’s nothing that terrifies the American government so much as the threat of democracy breaking out in America” (29 May 2012).
In the fourth episode of The World Tomorrow Julian Assange speaks with two leading Arab revolutionaries in the middle of conflict, Alaa Abd El-Fattah from Egypt and Nabeel Rajab from Bahrain. Alaa Abd El-Fattah is a long time Egyptian blogger, programmer and political activist. His parents were human rights campaigners under Anwar Sadat; his sister Mona Seif became a Twitter star during the 2011 Egyptian revolution, and is a founder of the No Military Trials for Civilians group formed under the post-Mubarak military junta. El-Fattah was imprisoned for 45 days in 2006 for protesting under the Mubarak regime, and released after “Free Alaa” solidarity protests in Egypt and around the world. In 2011, from abroad, El-Fattah helped route around Mubarak’s internet blockade. Nabeel Rajab is a lifelong Bahraini activist and critic of the Al Khalifa regime. A member of a staunch pro-regime family, Rajab has agitated for reform in Bahrain since his return from university in 1988. Along with the Bahraini-Danish human rights defender Abdulhadi al-Khawaja, he helped establish the Bahrain Centre for Human Rights in 2002. Rajab is reasonably new to the limelight — becoming a face for the Bahrain uprising of February 14 2011, after the sit-in at Pearl Roundabout. Since then, he has been a public face for the revolution, waging a social media war on Twitter with PR companies working for the regime. After al-Khawaja was imprisoned, he led protests for his release. He has endured beatings, arrests and legal harrassment for engaging in pro-democracy demonstrations. On Saturday 5th of May, he was arrested atManama airport , and charged the next day with encouraging and engaging in “illegal protests.” Nabeel Rajab remains in detention at the time of broadcast (8 May 2012).