In case you missed it, over the weekend WikiLeaks flag bearer and international man of no mystery whatsoever Julian Assange gave an impassioned speech to his followers from the window of the Ecuadorian embassy in London. He apparently took pains to remain in the window and not venture forth onto the balcony, which is technically British soil and would subject him to being shanghaied by commandos suspended from Harrier jets and whisked directly into a basement cell at Gitmo.
Assange had arranged a press conference to address his newly granted political asylum -- and because he hadn't been in front of a camera in weeks and had begun to break out in hives.
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In a brief speech, Assange thanked the president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, every nation in South America, and his supporters in the United States and United Kingdom, as well as his family and children. (Did you know Assange had a wife and kids? I didn't. Talk about your state secrets.)
He also said this:
As WikiLeaks stands under threat, so does the freedom of expression and the health of our societies. We must use this movement to articulate the choice that is before the government of the United States of America. Will it return and reaffirm the values it was founded on? Or will it lurch off the precipice, dragging us all into a dangerous and oppressive world, in which journalists fall silent under the fear of prosecution and citizens must whisper in the dark?
Then he broke into an impressively impassioned rendition of "Don't Cry for Me, WikiTina."
I'm kidding about that last bit, unfortunately.
At about the same time, in a quieter part of the Webosphere far from the cameras, John Young was patiently answering a reporter's questions about real and fake leak sites. In case you've never heard of John Young, he's the 76-year-old New York architect who also happens to be the creator of Cryptome.org, which has since June 1996 been the place where dark secrets emerge into the light and whistleblowers can reveal the truth.
In his answers to Radio Free Europe's Luke Allnut, Young recommended a handful of trustworthy, legitimate disclosure sites like PublicIntelligence.net and Cryptocomb.org; WikiLeaks was not among them. He also named sites that pretended to be leak sites but were in fact designed to spread propaganda and disinformation; among them was Allnut's own Radio Free Europe.