Revelations expose CIA's war on WikiLeaks - #26

US plotted to kidnap or kill Assange.

A new investigative article published by Yahoo! News on Sunday has given us fresh insights into the CIA’s war against WikiLeaks.

US spies in 2017 plotted to kidnap or even murder Assange, the new article shows.

The organisation’s publisher, the journalist Julian Assange, is currently a political prisoner in a British jail.

Read issue 16 of my newsletter for a reminder of all the important truths exposing the crimes of Israel and its lobby that we only know about thanks to WikiLeaks.

Palestine is Still the Issue
Issue #16 - What Julian Assange did for Palestine
Political prisoner Julian Assange’s extradition to the US was blocked by a British court in January. And yet he still languishes in Belmarsh Prison, reportedly in solitary confinement. But at the end of June there was hugely important news, with potentially massive implications for Assange’s freedom. The US government’s case (such as it ever was) began …
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The Yahoo! piece is a long article, so I’ll summarize some of its key findings below.

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But first it’s well worth noting that the broad outlines of what it shows have already been revealed, as long ago as 2019, by the excellent journalists Kevin Gosztola and Max Blumenthal.

Max’s 2020 article in particular focuses on an aspect omitted totally by Yahoo!: the role of the late Israel lobby financier Sheldon Adelson in apparently acting as the go-between from Spanish intelligence mercenaries UC Global to the CIA.

UC Global had been hired by the Ecuadorian embassy, and was supposed to protect Assange as he sought shelter there. But secretly its boss had turned to the “dark side” and gave security camera and microphone access inside the embassy to the CIA.

Having almost complete access to everything Assange said and did was not enough for them.

They plotted to actually kidnap him, hand him over to a third country and then have him “rendered” to US custody.

Soon after he was appointed director of the CIA by then President Trump, Mike Pompeo began talking about potentially kidnapping Assange, US intelligence officials told Yahoo!

In a major speech at the time, Pompeo said that Wikileaks was henceforth to be regarded as a “non-state hostile intelligence service.”

And yet, “the notion of kidnapping Assange preceded Pompeo’s arrival at Langley,” Yahoo! said. The idea of such criminality was not unique to Trump and was also mulled by officials during Obama’s presidency.

Top US spies wanted to re-designate WikiLeaks as an “information broker.” They also wanted to apply this label to other journalists, including Glenn Greenwald, eroding their free speech protections when publishing US secrets.

But CIA plans to get Assange accelerated during the early months of Trump’s term, which coincided with the release by WikiLeaks of a massive trove of CIA secrets. The “Vault 7” cache was a series of leaks exposing the CIA’s hacking tools to spy on its targets’ phones and messaging services.

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The plans against WikiLeaks didn’t stop at kidnapping:

agency executives requested and received “sketches” of plans for killing Assange and other Europe-based WikiLeaks members who had access to Vault 7 materials, said a former intelligence official. There were discussions “on whether killing Assange was possible and whether it was legal,” the former official said.

There’s a notable line in the Yahoo! report which reveals just how racially inferior the CIA views the non-white world:

Trying to seize Assange from an embassy in the British capital struck some as “ridiculous,” said the former intelligence official. “This isn’t Pakistan or Egypt — we’re talking about London.”

In other words: kidnapping and assassination is fine, as long as “we” are doing it and doing it only against brown or black people.

It also seems from the Yahoo! report that the CIA plans to abduct or kill Assange were what led the Justice Department to throw caution to the wind and charge Assange with the crime of doing journalism.

Kevin Gosztola will no doubt have more insights in the coming days, so keep an eye out for those, but meanwhile it’s worth checking the full Yahoo! piece.

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My work this week

In my newest long piece about Owen Jones this month, I expose how the Guardian columnist used his Medium blog to defend — in much detail — a Nazi collaborator.

For someone who claims to be an anti-fascist and a leading left-wing voice, this is a shocking act. But it only goes to show the lengths to which Jones will go to defend Israel and its racist ideology, Zionism.

In my Middle East Monitor column from this weekend I explore the nature and definition of “treason” using the historical example of Edward VIII, Britain's Nazi King.

This is all as a prelude to some disturbing news from Ireland.

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