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Wikileaks Donations Account Shut Down

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the sucker-punch dept.

The Almighty Buck 725

Scrameustache writes "The whistleblowing group WikiLeaks claims that it has had its funding blocked and that it is the victim of financial warfare by the US government. Moneybookers, a British-registered internet payment company that collects WikiLeaks donations, emailed the organisation to say it had closed down its account because it had been put on an official US watchlist and on an Australian government blacklist. The apparent blacklisting came a few days after the Pentagon publicly expressed its anger at WikiLeaks and its founder, Australian citizen Julian Assange, for obtaining thousands of classified military documents about the war in Afghanistan."

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Well, I do not usually get involved but... (-1, Offtopic)

Smidge207 (1278042) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901882)

Religious people usually like to explain things using their "intuition", which basically can just be their imagination. Religious people tend to "create" reasons why the world is the way it is and then "believe" in those reasons they thought up; therefore, there is no real evidence for those beliefs. This is called rationalization. For example, I could say that I believe the world is two dimensional. There is no way to ever prove that. It just means I "created" an explanation.

Rationalize: the cognitive process of making something SEEM consistent with or based on reason. Key word is SEEM.

Here is a good example of this. Religious people will say that when a person has something good happen to them God has blessed them with a gift; although, nobody saw God bless the person or experience the act. This is how many religious people think. They "think" things up. They "create" explanations. They do not really understand what is REALLY happening. I mean, they do not see all of the circumstances that could have caused this person to have something good happen to them. It could just be a coincidence. Mary dropped a $100 bill and Joe picked it up. Joe is not blessed. Joe is lucky. Mary is unlucky. Or, if there is a God, Joe is blessed and Mary just got royally screwed.

I am not saying religious people are wrong, but apparently someone has to be wrong out of all the religions that exist. For all I know someone out there has a direct link to God and I am totally clueless. But I would think that if God wanted me to believe in him or her, he or she would let me in on the secret. After all, that is the best way to get someone to believe in you. Hiding yourself from someone is not very efficient.

Personally, I do not believe in God because of genetic mutations that cause children to be born crippled. Additionally, I do not believe in God because of viruses that kill other living things on a continual basis.

In my honest opinion, people should not attempt to rationalize reality. Science can help explain WHAT is happening, not always WHY. There are many people out there who RATIONALIZE reality using scientific fact. Trying to explain WHY something is happening can become rationalization. Religious people AND some atheists do this. For example, some atheists believe science explains WHY reality is the way it is, when the WHY is just a RATIONALIZATION. Basically, people in general are guilty of this, atheist or religious. Science should only be used to explain WHAT is happening so that it can be applied in the future. It should not attempt to explain WHY because then it falls into the same fallacy of religious mysticism.

Oh Julian!!! (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33901966)

You've got such beautiful hair! You look like such a daring revolutionary. I hope they don't muss it up when you are in prison.

Re:Well, I do not usually get involved but... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902406)

the mark of the reptile is the mark of the beast, the one with the forked tongue, in the tongue of Abraham, who speaks both of truth and of lies, both good and evil.
the devil shall not tell you of his desires, but shall seek out yours. He shall feed of your desires and off your misery, he shall seek to make you like him, to consume you.
Those who ascend on earth do so because they know they will not ascend into heaven.

Those who need to be tutored in the truth, need so because they do not know the truth inside themselves, for they are leviathan, they have been consumed by evil, and they have become it. They will seek to raise hell on earth.
the serpent rose from the sea, with seven heads, and seven crowns and he placed the mark of the beats on the heads of men.

They shall seek to raise the dirt from which they where made into the riches of the earth, for they know they will not ascend to heaven.

Beware the Zionists.

Do not trust a man who says he believes in god,
For a man who needs Gods help to repent his sins must have grievous sins indeed.

Do not trust a man who would have you believe in God.
For what sins does he see in you.

Uh (4, Insightful)

copponex (13876) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901900)

At this point, is US government hatred of freedom and democracy even news?

Re:Uh (4, Insightful)

vvaduva (859950) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902020)

Making enemies faster than they can kill them...

Re:Uh (1)

DarkofPeace (1672314) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902144)

Making enemies faster than they are killing them. Fixed that for you

Re:Uh (4, Insightful)

silanea (1241518) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902022)

It is, when it involves them meddling in foreigners' affairs. What the USA do within their borders is largely between the government and the electorate. But this stinks a mile high.

Re:Uh (0, Troll)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902280)

Well to be fair, Julian Assange is a massive douche mark.

Re:Uh (4, Insightful)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902032)

That's a little over the top. There are people in high places who are doing what they think necessary to accomplish their mission. They may be wrong. Their actions may not be lawful. But I don't see the entirety of the US government sitting around thinking of how much they hate freedom and democracy and conspiring ways to end it. If you want to correct a problem it helps to have a reasoned view of what motivates the participants.

Re:Uh (5, Insightful)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902262)

I'm guessing you haven't been to the airport since late 2001 or so.

Re:Uh (0, Flamebait)

socceroos (1374367) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902272)

When that motivation is blind power, you've got to ask the questions.

Re:Uh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902070)

Seems odd to me that my government doesn't like the voting citizens to know the truth.

If voters don't know the truth, how can we vote intelligently? Or do we just take the official PR at its word, and pretend it's truth?

What model government do we have?

Re:Uh (3, Insightful)

chrisj_0 (825246) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902164)

voters are stupid and must be told how to vote. At least I think that's what they believe

Re:Uh (0, Flamebait)

ffreeloader (1105115) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902086)

You're assertions are out of line. Assange put many people at risk of death, including citizens of Afghanistan, by publishing documents without even removing information that personally identifies civilians that terrorists would love to get their hands on. That ought to outrage everyone, including his supporters, as he has no sense of the worth of a human life.

He's an asshat. He proved he's only out for self-glorification, and doesn't give a damn how many people are hurt by his actions. I sure won't shed any tears of the demise of Wikileaks as long as he's at the head of it. Even many of those working with him on Wikileaks resigned rather put up with him.

I would do the same thing the US government did to shut him down. He's a egomaniac that puts innocents in harms way just so he can attack his perceived enemies faster. He could have delayed publishing the documents but he wouldn't as he runs off of hatred, not principle. He's no one to follow or support in any way.

Re:Uh (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902124)

What an asshat, uncovering the nasty things the US military wanted to cover up! Also, we should still be in Vietnam, those damned commies! We should have shot that whistleblower!

Re:Uh (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902210)

What fuck wad. It makes it acceptable for your hero to put peoples lives at risk because others have. I hope someone puts a bullet in his head. Fuck it. What goes around comes around.

Re:Uh (0, Troll)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902356)

Imagine you're an undercover cop infiltrating organized crime and wikileaks 'released' a confidential doc that included your picture, your name, your wife and children's name and your address. Now how would you feel? There's a reason some stuff is secret - It's because some asshat morons can't be trusted. Are some things secret that shouldn't be? Absolutely. Are some things secret for a reason? Also absolutely.

Re:Uh (2, Insightful)

TFAFalcon (1839122) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902268)

Well in some ways those civilians could be though of as collaborators with the invading army.

Re:Uh (2, Interesting)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902282)

puts innocents in harms way

Meanwhile, we still have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan....

How should people help wikileaks? (3, Interesting)

h00manist (800926) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901926)

Wikileaks is a great project, but its not too clear how people can help them.

Re:How should people help wikileaks? (4, Insightful)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901974)

The best way is to set up a nonpartisan, unbiased website that releases such documents without the ridiculous commentary and shifty editing.

Assange has done a severe disservice to WL with his emphasis on injecting over the top editorial into the stories on the site.

Re:How should people help wikileaks? (3, Informative)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902388)

It still would be shut down. That and they would flat out lie if such documents revealed trumped up evidence (WMDs?), coverups (Pat Tillman, Jessica Lynch), outright lawbreaking (Ilario Pantano shooting two detained Iraqis, Abu Ghraib torture), and suspicious circumstances (billions of dollars in cash sent to Iraq and can't be accounted for).

Re:How should people help wikileaks? (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902428)

Assange has done a severe disservice to WL with his emphasis on injecting over the top editorial into the stories on the site.

Like calling murder "murder", that kind of over the top editorializing? Or do you have a better example?

Re:How should people help wikileaks? (5, Informative)

Presto Vivace (882157) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901986)

The US military whistle blowers would have been MUCH better off going to the Project on Government Oversight [pogo.org] , an organization which has a history of helping whistle blowers get out their stories and keep them out of jail. Other than continuing to link to Wikileaks and give them publicity, I have no clue as to how to help them.

Re:How should people help wikileaks? (5, Informative)

Amouth (879122) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902410)

a problem with pogo.org is they are in inside the US.. so they are subject to National Security letters and gag orders.. if they had gone there - none of this stuff would have made the light of day except as a rumor before it was shut down.

Good riddance to wikilinks! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33901934)

If they post classified information that is going to compromise sources and result in the deaths of Afghan civilians and US/coalition soldiers, then they shouldn't be surprised to find themselves on a watch list. Hell, they got off easy. They deserve criminal charges filed against them.

Re:Good riddance to wikilinks! (5, Insightful)

yossie (93792) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902002)

I hear that said, but I hear politicians say these kinds of things all the time - PROVE to me that someone(s) got hurt/killed due to this release and I may feel otherwise, but for now, I believe they are being targeted for "pissing off" the powers that be.

Re:Good riddance to wikilinks! (1)

Americano (920576) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902158)

I hear that there's previously-unknown evidence of war crimes in the Afghan War Diaries, and that's why there was such a rush to publicize them without proper redaction and editing. PROVE to me that there is by citing the data with appropriate links, and I may feel otherwise, but for now, I believe they are just trying to drum up publicity to inflate Mr. Assange's ego.

Hey! That was fun! Now, you go again!

Re:Good riddance to wikilinks! (1)

Xelios (822510) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902296)

I'm sorry, that information is classified.

But it's there, trust us.

Re:Good riddance to wikilinks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902376)

Irrelevant. No one in position of authority is going to care whether someone WAS killed, but if they could have BEEN killed -- to behave otherwise is irresponsible and inhumane. If GP can prove that important names were leaked, then he can have his shitstorm, if not, then he can politely STFU.

Messengers (3, Insightful)

cosm (1072588) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901942)

They continue to shoot the messenger. It wouldn't surprise me if the intelligence community turned that phrase literal.

"Official US Watchlist" (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33901948)

Plenty of stories repeat this "official US watchlist" phrase, but without providing details. What watchlist? What's it called? How does it work?

Re:"Official US Watchlist" (2, Informative)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902012)

Re:"Official US Watchlist" (1)

JustOK (667959) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902126)

and watching the watch list is enough to get you watched by those who watch who watch the watchlist

I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (0, Troll)

huzur79 (1441705) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901950)

Im not totally on Wikileaks side because they didn't take enough care to protect peoples names in the content they released. Its one thing to release content for the world to see but its another thing to get people killed by releasing it with out at least removing names. That totally turned me off from Wikileaks.

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (5, Insightful)

rueger (210566) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901992)

get people killed by releasing it with out at least removing names

Who? Has anyone documented a case where this happened? from what I read WL were pretty careful in vetting the material.

Without names and places this is FUD.

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902242)

I believe the Iraqi people can release over 100,000 names of people killed by US troops. Oh, that's not the issue here is it.

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902294)

get people killed by releasing it with out at least removing names

Who? Has anyone documented a case where this happened? from what I read WL were pretty careful in vetting the material.

Without names and places this is FUD.

And more important, STUPID FUD. The same military asskissers that are worried about informants couldn't give two shits about the "collateral damage" that actually happens out there. Apparently it's bad to get a Taliban informant killed, but "accidentally" bombing a house full of children is OK as long as there were "reports" of "insurgent activity".

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902026)

I dunno. I think it got much more interest that way. Its one thing to have [5 non-combatants were killed by some Americans who thought they were carrying an RPG] and instead have "A,B,C,D,E were killed by X,Y, Z at [date] [time] during operation [whatever]"

It increases the amount of accountability at least, and makes sure that people responsable (or their superiors) are put into the limelight.

That said, certain operative information and intelligence sources - I would agree with you. But I think that naming people who did something bad is far better than blanking it out. No accountability there.

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902076)

Im not totally on Wikileaks side because they didn't take enough care to protect peoples names in the content they released. Its one thing to release content for the world to see but its another thing to get people killed by releasing it with out at least removing names. That totally turned me off from Wikileaks.

How about the government taking care to protect innocent people by getting the fuck out of Afghanistan?
It is one thing to go after the 9/11 perps, but it another thing to try and win a ground war without any plan for victory and idiotic rules of engagement like 'patrol only where you aren't likely to encounter the enemy' and 'don't shoot back at someone if they're firing from a mosque.'

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (4, Insightful)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902088)

My feeling exactly. Wikileaks has conflated the public "right to know" with an imaginary "need to know," and decided that this right is more important than the lives of the people named in the documents. IMAO, they've consistently shown a complete lack of common sense and a reckless disregard for the danger they're exposing people to. The fact that something is classified as Secret or Top Secret isn't enough of a reason to leak it; it should only be leaked (Again, IMAO.) if it's been classified for all the wrong reasons. Yes, we all know of times when things have been classified because that's the easiest way to cover up mistakes, and things like that deserve leaking, but leaking the names and locations of people who are helping the US to fight terrorists is Simply Wrong.

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (5, Informative)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902128)

Im not totally on Wikileaks side because they didn't take enough care to protect peoples names in the content they released.

They held back 15 thousand pages to protect people's names while they tried to sort through them. Google it.
They asked the pentagon to tell them which name to remove, the pentagon told them to go to hell.

Its one thing to release content for the world to see but its another thing to get people killed by releasing it with out at least removing names.

They did remove names, and they got no one killed. Try to find someone they got killed: You can't. The people who said they were gonna get people killed are the people who actively do indeed actually kill real people, have been for years, plan on doing it for years still. They fed you FUD, and you ate it all up.

That totally turned me off from Wikileaks.

Mission accomplished.

Re:I dont feel sorry for Wikileaks (4, Insightful)

Xelios (822510) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902278)

I'm totally on Wikileaks side. I know it's PC to damn Wikileaks for accidentally releasing some names in the 75,000 reports that were leaked recently, but I find it's always good to keep some perspective. The wars in the middle east have cost tens of thousands of lives, and part of the reason they're still going is the tight lipped attitude of the government with regards to any kind of transparency. If the administration weren't in the habit of releasing reports that are entirely blacked out, or flat out refusing FOIP requests altogether, then the task of providing a clear picture of how the war is progressing wouldn't befall a volunteer organization like Wikileaks. And when Wikileaks requested the help of the Pentagon in redacting the names, that request was of course ignored.

Perhaps some people suffered as a result of that leak, but I find that no more tragic than the dozens of people who die to IED's and suicide bombings every other day in those same countries.

Breaking the Stalemate? (4, Interesting)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901956)

Why doesn't this guy just yell "Banzai", leak out the rest of the documents, and survive for 5 minutes while hundreds of copies are made on the internet?

At this point its just pointless bickering, if this guy releases the rest of what he's got, the US will have no real interest in him anymore I would think - because even if he 'mysteriously dies when his server mysteriously explodes', the copies of the document would have still been spread around like wildfire.

Re:Breaking the Stalemate? (3, Interesting)

yincrash (854885) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902018)

because it could put lives in danger? that would only serve to fuel the opponents who give that as the reasoning that they should be shut down (which may or may not be their real motive)

Re:Breaking the Stalemate? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902224)

How many lives are put in danger by the continuation of these wars? What puts those lives below the lives that releasing the information might endanger? People who join the (US) military are volunteers and are (or should be) informed of the danger they are putting their lives in when they choose to serve. When the government abuses that trust and puts them in harms way for reasons that are utterly unjust and fraudulent we should do everything in our power to stop it and bring those people back safe and sound. At this point we have to choose between two evils, endanger the people who gave the government, and by proxy the people, that trust, or the people they are fighting who did not volunteer to be invaded.

I think the government doesn't want them to be released because the conduct of the war is an embarrassment, just like the reasons and those who voted to send them there in the first place. The government as an entity doesn't care if people are endangered, only if the status quo is threatened.

The problem is, by and large, the American public doesn't really care. Thus the current order is maintained.

Captcha: Protests

Re:Breaking the Stalemate? (2, Interesting)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902416)

These leaks don't do anything to stop the war. Most of the stuff that it had wasn't anything of use. That anyone with with an IQ more then 20 would knows that that stuff went on. The problem is releasing names, that puts people in danger.

Here is an example say platoon x was involved in a fight that had high civilian casulities, it happens the wrong people get killed. So now this unit goes to a new area that knows about it. What happens, the civilians will be extra scared of this platoon and probably do something to preemptively protect themselfs and cause a conflict that may not have happened causing military and civilian casulaties.

Julian Assange here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33901958)

*message redacted*

Re:Julian Assange here... (1)

cosm (1072588) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902232)

*message redacted*

Julian, you insensitive clod! Mr. M Redacted will now be in danger of tuurist retaliation. [sic]

Direct mailing address (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33901976)

For now you can send donations by snail mail to:

Julian Assange
c/o Julian Assange, Sr.
The Pearl
Secret Wikileaks Island
Post Box #3
Decoder Ring Engraving A
Australia
No wait, Norway
Er, maybe Iceland
The World

Wikileaks is the victim? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33901978)

When you take on a government or collection of governments to expose secrets and threaten their national security they will get angry.

I don't agree or disagree with Wikileaks or America or Australia. Governments are just like any other organization: they will preserve themselves at the cost of others.

I'm sure Wikileaks will be fine, secure funding and find other ways to continue receiving donations.

Wikileaks puts lives at risk (-1, Troll)

Starrider (73590) | more than 3 years ago | (#33901990)

What did they think would happen? They released documents that put Afghan civilians and US troops at risk. This isn't protecting democracy, it's treason. Wikileaks is giving aid to the enemy. The founder should be in prison, and slashdot is whining about the donation page getting shut down?

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (5, Insightful)

loufoque (1400831) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902054)

Arguably though, the best way to avoid putting Afghan civilians and US troops out of harm is to have US troops go back to the US.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902066)

I have served as an intelligence analyst for 9 years and I know with 100% certainty that the parent post is correct.

99.9% of the time, information is classified in order to protect a source (human, etc). I am amazed by the ignorance of people's analysis of the data that wikileaked poured out -- they are completely missing the point.

Wikileaks actions WILL get innocent people killed.

Citation Needed (4, Insightful)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902162)

<quote><p>99.9% of the time, information is classified in order to protect a source (human, etc)..</p></quote>

[Citation Needed]

Information is also classified when you want to perform atrocities or "its not good for morale", or its dissemination will cause the main plan not to work.

The My Lai Massacre was 'classified' for a year or so before it became public knowledge.

The names in the leaked documents aren't half as important as the actions they committed.

Re:Citation Needed (1, Informative)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902366)

Information is also classified when you want to perform atrocities or "its not good for morale", or its dissemination will cause the main plan not to work.

It is specifically against the law to classify something for such a reason.

There are legal procedures to have such things declassified.

Assange didn't want to go through those procedures, because it wouldn't make him famous. He's finding out that he made a mistake in choosing fame over doing the right thing.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902208)

Watchin 24 doesn't make you an "Intelligence Analyst", sonny boy.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902330)

I also know with 100% certainty that released bullets WILL get innocent people killed and that the ratio of released bullets to released documents is quite high.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902378)

oddly, no one is dead as a reason behind the leak

but not oddly alot of innocent have died from the army

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

GrumblyStuff (870046) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902424)

War actions WILL get innocent people killed.

Yay! We're pulling our troops out! ...err, right?

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902078)

How can it be treason if Assange is not an Afghani nor a US citizen?

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (4, Insightful)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902104)

Its not really treason since the owner isn't from the US. He's Australian.

If you put it that way, leaking ANY information about ANYONE should be illegal? Why should he be in prison? As far as I know, no law was broken.

The US soldier who leaked the information in the firstplace - yes, you could call that treason. And yes that's illegal.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1, Troll)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902386)

Its not really treason since the owner isn't from the US. He's Australian.

1. By that logic, then it's wouldn't really be against the law for America to have Assange killed.

2. It's against Australian law to reveal the secrets of Australia's allies.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

Chelmet (1273754) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902106)

Treason? Isn't treason an act against your own government, as apposed to someone else'? It winds me up no end that foreign governments have the power to effectively close the bank accounts of foreign companies, I think it is ridiculous, in fact, and that the big bad old U S of A should fuck off and deal with the problem at home, such as not letting this Asange fellow enter. Either the country in which he is hosted should shut him down, because they agree with America, or there shouldn't be anything done, because they don't, and are their own country and do what the fuck they want.

Puts democracy at risk, what nonsense you write

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902110)

The real criminals are the ones classifying evidence of war crimes to bury the information from ever seeing the light of day.

You are just shooting the messenger.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902420)

You are correct. If the information had no other reason to be classified, the person who classified it would be breaking the law. And there are procedures spelled out in the law for declassifying the information in a manner that maintains the secrecy of those portions that should remain classified.

However, Assange is not the messenger. He revealed classified information without following the legal procedure to do so. In the process he broke the law against declassifying information inappropriately. He also, because of his haste and lack of reasonability, allowed information that should have remained classified to be revealed.

Assange is a criminal idiot and deserves any punishment he gets.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902116)

They released documents that put Afghan civilians and US troops at risk.

Just shows that the government hates competition

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902118)

Dude, where the hell have you been? Rich mutha fuckers and corporations, which is more rich mother fuckers and Zionists have stolen our democracy from us I'm not sure what you could possibly mean with "protecting democracy." Unless you count voting for a guy from one of two-corporation sponsored parties democracy. Many of our leaders should be in prison instead. GWB for crimes against humanity for one. Where's YOUR outrage?

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

luther349 (645380) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902256)

well i say this to all my friends as well. as long as the dumb assed people keep voting for 1 of the 2 sponserd shitbags are problems will never get fixed. when people wise up and toss both the fuckers and vote a new party then and only then will are leaders do there jobs. why because they will fear losing there jobs when they fuckup.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

watermark (913726) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902120)

The founder isn't a citizen of the US. I don't think he can commit treason against the US.

Treason: A crime that undermines the offenders government.

Espionage: The systematic use of spies to get military or political secrets.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902140)

What did they think would happen? They released documents that put Afghan civilians and US troops at risk. This isn't protecting democracy, it's treason. Wikileaks is giving aid to the enemy. The founder should be in prison, and slashdot is whining about the donation page getting shut down?

Wikileaks is not American. US soldiers volunteered for army and war, and the US voluntarily invaded Afghanistan, therefore, both placed in conflict and danger out of their own choices. There wouldn't even be any war data to leak otherwise.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

luther349 (645380) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902338)

if nobody volunteered they would just start a draft. and being in the army isn't all bad. the things you get for sighing the paper are much higher then some kid just out of highschool looking for a job. and after your stay in the army if you don't blow your money your gonna walk out 80k richer.not bad for someone whos only 20. im talking sighing bounes and 2 years of pay.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (3, Insightful)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902184)

That's only if you believe the troops NEED to be in Afghanistan to begin with.

As far as I'm concerned - the amount of danger Wikileaks put on soldiers pales in comparison to the amount of danger Bush has put on them. They'd be far safer on US Soil protecting the actual US Borders instead of it's foreign interests;

It's like me breaking into your house and complaining that your dog pointed me out.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (2, Interesting)

bersl2 (689221) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902186)

They released documents that put Afghan civilians and US troops at risk.

War puts lives at risk. If anything negative actually happened as a result of the release, well, [citation needed]. And if it's not a primary source, [citation needed] all the way down until it goes no farther, and then we can evaluate the legitimacy of the information.

This isn't protecting democracy, it's treason.

Do you even understand the definition of treason in the United States Constitution? Or the dictionary definition, for that matter?

Wikileaks is giving aid to the enemy.

Again, [citation needed].

The founder should be in prison, and slashdot is whining about the donation page getting shut down?

Put up hard information, or shut your authoritarian piehole.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902238)

What we are doing in afghanistan has nothing to do with democracy.

The U.S. is a representative republic within our boarders and an undemocratic thug outside our borders.

It's been shown over and over.

I don't know how we got here so quickly from Eisenhower. He warned us... but it did no good.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902260)

This isn't protecting democracy, it's treason.

      Er, no it isn't. Assange is not a US or Afghan citizen. You can only betray your own country, you know.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902270)

Treason would only apply if Wikileaks and Assange were American.

Transparency and the freedom of information are essential to democracy. Wikileaks/Assange didn't decide to take America to war with Afghanistan, so they should not be held solely responsible for the release of information related to America's actions in that operation.

It's astonishing that Wikileaks gets more press than the war crimes committed by the US government.

Wikileaks only aids the enemy if the enemy is knowledge. I don't know about you, but knowledge is my friend.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902276)

lol.... its the US troops that are putting the Afgan civilians at risk... as for helping the enemy, the afgan fighters kicked the soviets arse long ago with the same AK47's and no access to the internet. Fact is the US does not have a good history against entrenched guerilla fighters, if they want to save lives pull out already. Which reminds me of the CIA operations in Vietnam where US agents dressed up as viet cong and destoryed villages and killed civillians to turn them against supporting viet cong... so much for hearts and minds... more like if we can't f*ck you one way we'll f*ck you another. At least there is no point dropping agent orange in Afganistan.

Re:Wikileaks puts lives at risk (5, Insightful)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902290)

They released documents that put Afghan civilians and US troops at risk.

No, they released documents that showed that US policy routinely massacres Afghan civilians and puts US troops at risk.
The pentagon said "releasing these documents puts the lives of the people we bomb at risk", it's transparent bullshit, but the sheeple say "baaaa". Do you remember that lil' Vietnamese girl that got napalmed and then spectacularly photographed, and the pentagon spent over a decade saying she got burned in a kitchen mishap? Did you believe their kitchen mishap cover story as much as you believe their "the truth is the enemy" cover story?
Remember how they told you Pat Tillman was shot by Taliban, and it turns out there were no Taliban there that day? Did you believe them when they told you a soldier in Afghanistan was shot by Taliban? Was it a believable lie?
How about the cute little blonde soldier that got knocked out in an attack on her convoy and the pentagon said she had fought valiantly to the last bullet of her sidearm, they attacked a hospital that had been trying to hand her over to "rescue" her, made up stories about the Iraqis treating her badly... did you believe that too?
Don't you think you should be less gullible and more informed?

This isn't protecting democracy, it's treason.

Yeah! Those Swedes are committing treason in the united states by letting that Aussie publish those documents! TREASON! And you don't sound like an idiot at all when you say that. Not at all.

They need a better spokesperson (3, Insightful)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902014)

I can get behind Wikileaks, but not Assange. He is egotistical tool.

Re:They need a better spokesperson (1)

Blue Stone (582566) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902310)

>I can get behind Wikileaks, but not Assange. He is egotistical tool.

Citation needed.

Re:They need a better spokesperson (1, Insightful)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902322)

I can get behind Wikileaks, but not Assange. He is egotistical tool.

Character assassination: Done and done!
Now instead of focusing on the issue, you will parrot out the "the spokesperson is bad, we must not listen" line every time wikileaks is mentioned. You don't even say why you believe what you say, you probably don't even know yourself that you only believe it because of a campaign of repetition in the media made you absorb this baseless meme.

Ya (2, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902380)

I don't like him at all. I believe he is doing things for the wrong reason. He isn't releasing all this classified information because it is for the public good, he is doing it because it is an ego trip and makes him important, and because it hurts the US and he doesn't like the US. Now that doesn't mean that his actions are ultimately bad, you can very well feel that indeed this release DOES serve the public interest. I just don't think HIS reasons are the good ones he claims.

They really need a more moral spokesman, and they need to get some rules that they follow for what they do and don't release. If the rule is "Any and everything," ok fine but make that up front and known. Say "We release anything, without regard for what harm that it may cause or if the information is of value to the public." However if that's not what you want to do, if you want to decide if things are important enough to release and to try to not cause any harm, then that's fine too, but you need to have a policy to that effect and stick to it. In the case of the classified cables that would mean only releasing those that showed something of public interest, and redacting names and so on. Ya that's a lot of work but that is what it takes to be responsible about it.

As it stands Assange seems to want to play at being the good guy, but he's just a jackass that likes to pump his ego and get egg on teh face of those he doesn't like. That degrades Wikileaks as a whole.

Unfortunately it is his baby, so I don't really think anyone can kick him out and he's way too egotistical to realize that it would be much better off if he stepped down.

I do think the world needs things like Wikileaks, however it needs them run by people who actually care about the public good. Who release secrets only because they need to be released, not just because they happen to have gotten their hands on them.

Wikileaks (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902044)

Probably should\n't have been baiting them. If you are going to release documents, the release them. Don't wave them around going nyner nyner, looky what I got.

Re:Wikileaks (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902346)

Probably should\n't have been baiting them. If you are going to release documents, the release them. Don't wave them around going nyner nyner, looky what I got.

So if they review their documents before releasing them: they're taunting the authorities; if they release the documents quickly, they are recklessly endangering lives.

Is that how it works?

Too much secrecy kills a government (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902052)

The US government is keeping so many facts and events classified, it simply can not function as a democratic government anymore.
When people don't have access to important information, they can't vote correctly. And when they can't vote correctly, the government can't make the right decisions. I understand sometimes secrecy is necessary for safety, but too much simply kills a democracy. Wikileaks is the expression of that idea, as they fight the excessive secrecy of governments and try to provide citizens with information that citizens should have.

The sweet irony (5, Interesting)

siddesu (698447) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902056)

It is funny (and, in a way sad) that the same country that sponsored all those radio stations I used to listen to as a young girl for (freedom-)free information during the Cold war years from behind the Iron curtain is now trying to stomp out a website that does exactly the same.

Ah, dreams of my youth, when did you wither away?

The even sweeter irony (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902130)

I have noticed that the US government is really taking the wrong approach to this, personally, whenever I hear about wikileaks in the news I always go and browse there for a while (and if I had the cash I'm donate), but otherwise I honestly don't even remember its there.

Re:The even sweeter irony (1)

Americano (920576) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902252)

Yeah, whenever I see mention of it, I go there too... to read, "We are sorry, WikiLeaks is currently underoing scheduled maintenance. We will be back online as soon as possible. For status updates you can follow our twitter feed."

Been that way since Sept. 29 or 30. Maybe they'll just migrate to twitter entirely. 140-character leaks.

Re:The even sweeter irony (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902302)

I don't give a fuck what you think.

CUT THIS BITCH OFF!

it must be Wikileaks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902166)

said the company in a statement,
it has nothing to do with we could be abused as a gateway for quietly laundering illicit gains from various criminal activities (financial scams need a payment processor right?) from around the globe, keeping under the noses of the tax collectors and serious crime investigators audits all while skimming off parts of these transactions (almost like free money) under the banner of "its not us officer, it was one of our customers so we are in the clear right ?"

no it must be Wikileaks that got us on the blacklist ..

Bitcoin (1)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902172)

This would be the perfect opportunity to show the world what Bitcoin can do (or what it can't).

Re:Bitcoin (1)

sgtstein (1219216) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902316)

It absolutely would be. This is exactly what the system is designed for in both senses. So, Wonko, how do we go about doing this? Any threads on the forums at http://www.bitcoin.org/smf/ [bitcoin.org]

Re:Bitcoin (1)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902344)

Pretty much all that needs to happen is for Wikileaks to publish a donation address.

Then anyone who wants to donate could install the program, find someone who will sell bitcoins in exchange for currency and send them to that address.

Should Have Used (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902218)

Western Union.
10 out of 10 Nigerian Scammers agree.

Can't have civil rights without economic rights (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902234)

When your property rights and access to financial transactions exist at the whim of government you don't really have other rights.

Of course. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902244)

Mais We, welcome to the Brave New World of 1984!

Bill of Attainder (2, Interesting)

RecycledElectrons (695206) | more than 3 years ago | (#33902358)

Creating a list of companies & people, and then grabbing their assets is called a "Bill of Attainder"

This is illegal under Article 1, Section 9 of the US Constitution.

I can not say more or I would be subject to such a bill.

it's developments like this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33902360)

that make the strong case for hundreds or thousands of sites like wikileaks. centralization (and their egotistical leader) may be their downfall.

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