Author Topic: The unstable politicians in the US are dangerous – WikiLeaks spokesperson  (Read 3926 times)

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Offline Riney

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The unstable politicians in the US are dangerous – WikiLeaks spokesperson
John Robles - The Voice Of Russia- December 20th 2012

Photo: AFP
WikiLeaks official spokesperson Kristinn Hrafnsson.

In an exclusive interview with the Voice of Russia, WikiLeaks official spokesperson Kristinn Hrafnsson speaks about the Freedom of the Press Foundation and their new initiative to provide help and assistance to members of the press who are being persecuted for seeking to tell the truth. In particular the FPF offers a way to circumvent the illegal extra-judicial blockade against WikiLeaks. He also talked about unstable and dangerous American politicians.
Robles: This is John Robles. I am speaking with Mr. Kristinn Hrafnsson, he is the Official Spokesperson for the Wikileaks Organization.

Greeting. Exchange of weather information.

Can you tell us a little bit about the Wikileaks declaration of war on the US banking giants?

Hrafnsson: Today marked a new episode of that war. I might like to say that actually this war was started by the financial giants and we never asked for that, they declared war on us in December 2010 by the banking blockade on Wikileaks and ever since we have been fighting battles in that war, on the legal front, and had successes on many fronts and today of course we had great support from the United States where the new organization, the Free Press Foundation opened up a website, opening for donations to Wikileaks and other organizations that are fighting for transparency and fighting to end secrecy ridiculous secrecy that is now engulfing our western nations.

Robles: It is called the Freedom of the Press Foundation, is that correct?

Hrafnsson: Yes.

Robles: Now they say they will provide “crowd-source fundraising” for organizations and individuals being attacked for telling the truth. What exactly is crowd-source financing and who will determine if someone is being attacked for telling the truth?

Hrafnsson: I assume the board of the foundation will decide which individuals or organization will be placed upon the choice board on the website and then it is up to the individual who donates money to the foundation to decide by himself how to split up the donation in between the organizations or individuals that are placed there which is going straight to the public and I think to support the initiative in fighting for transparency and openness and fighting against secrecy.

Robles: What exactly is crowd-source financing? What exactly is that?

Hrafnsson: In its essence, of course, it’s going straight to the public and financing initiatives, battles or publications directly upfront by individuals through small donations. In essence of course WikiLeaks has always been sort of crowd funded organization because all of our revenues have come through average-size or small-size donations from a very large group of individuals, tens of thousands of people.

Robles: Now I understand the organization began its work today. Have you had any initial results yet?

Hrafnsson: I have not heard any initial results. I mean they had a press conference a little bit earlier and it might still be going on actually. I don’t have the information of whether they have named any numbers but this has had some attention from the media, attention among people who are carrying this message on, so I hope this will be an important initiative resulting in good work by Wikileaks and the other organizations that are on the display of the foundation.

Robles: Are there any chances that the so-called financial giants, that they could actually blockade the freedom of the Press Foundation?

Hrafnsson: I find it very hard to believe that they are able to do that. The foundation has a recognized charity status in the United States and I don’t see how on earth they could actually take up any action against the foundation. And if so, I am fairly certain that they will have an open court room waiting for them with prominent lawyers, counter-attacking any attempt to stop this.

Robles: A technical question, is there any chance that the amount of money that is going to go to Wikileaks can be traced or blocked in any way or this pretty much keeps you safe?

Hrafnsson: The foundation has carefully managed the website in such a way that there is no possibility to trace individual donations, so it will be perfectly safe. As I said earlier, the foundation has a recognized charity status in the US, and of course none of the organizations, including Wikileaks that are on the website that you can donate to had been charged with anything anywhere in the world, and have even been cleared by the US Treasury quite a lot time ago when there was an attempt by US politicians to pressure the US Treasury to blacklist the organization. There were no charges against Wikileaks or the other entities and it would have been absolutely absurd had there been any attempt to try to trace donations or try to stop this initiative and that would really be met, I am sure, with a total outrage by all individuals in the US and the rest of the world.

Robles: Wikileaks has never, not one time, been charged anywhere in the world with committing any kind of a crime for publishing what they’ve published. Isn’t it correct?

Hrafnsson: Wikileaks has never been charged with any crime anywhere, throughout its history, and there have been big words issued and claims of illegality by politicians and commentators in the United States following our publications in 2010, but one thing are words from unstable politicians and another thing is formal charges that we had not received anywhere.

Robles: What did you call them? Unstable politicians?

Hrafnsson: Well, I call them unstable politicians, the Tea-Party members that have been stepping up and calling for drone attacks, calling for the assassinations of Julian Assange or other heads of organizations. I call them unstable individuals that are full of hate speach and basically are spitting on them through the media, which is in itself a very serious thing. This could have caused, or incite other unstable individuals to actually carry out such deeds. So, it is extremely to hear and witness these kinds of scenarios from elected politicians in a so-called democracy.

Robles: I love that phrase – unstable politicians.

Hrafnsson: You are welcome to use that in the future maybe with link on the website, of the video, which we actually have put together: a collection of these comments that have been issued towards Julian Assange and Wikileaks which is quite interesting to watch. It is a jaw-dropping thing when you see it in one place and a few minutes clip.

Robles: What is the address, can you tell our listeners?

Hrafnsson: It is on our website and it has also been uploaded on Youtube and should be easily found there.

Robles: Okay Kristinn, thank you very much. Do you have anything else you want to finish up with?

Hrafnsson: No, I am fine, I just wanted to add that today is Bradley Manning’s 25th birthday, his 3rd birthday behind bars without trial.

Robles: Everybody, happy Birthday to Bradley Manning, from me, from Kristinn as well and thank you very much for speaking with me again I really appreciate it.
"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage" Anais Nin .. and yet we must arm ourselves with fear

Offline Riney

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Politicians are being more and more controlled by corporations - Hrafnsson
John Robles- December 24th 2012 - The Voice of Russia

This is John Robles. I am speaking with Mr. Kristinn Hrafnsson, the Official Spokesperson for the Wikileaks Organization.

Robles: In 2010 you had over million dollars in cash reserves and you were down to less than a $1000. That is alarming, I think. Is WikiLeaks under any kind of a threat of closure or are you going to manage to scrape through ok?

Hrafnsson: We will try our best to manage and keep on going. We of course have had to scale down dramatically, and more importantly we have been deprived of the possibility of expanding our operation, as we would have wanted, in light of the importance of our work. But we are in dire times, it cannot be denied, that, the individuals working for the organization and the big crowd of volunteers and supporters, are ensuring to keep the work going.

We are not about to cave-in in this war, on the contrary, we are starting a new front. We’ve had victories in court in Iceland, we started a case in Denmark, we’ve had victories in the European Parliament against the authorities in Germany, in France we were able to open an “I” gate against the blockade. Now with the good support of individuals in the US we are scaling up our counter-attack and I ensure we will have these financial giants on the run pretty soon.

Robles: When we talked a couple months ago, you just mentioned the gateway in France. Has that been productive, has that helped you guys, out?

Hrafnsson: It has been helpful as other initiatives to bypass this blockade but the blockade is still in place and it is still causing people concerns, and they feel that somehow there is illegality involved in actually donating to the organization, so it is very important to keep the fight going and have it lifted and we will continue on that.

Robles: Last time we talked, we talked about the European Parliament’s decision. Has there been any movement on that?

Hrafnsson: Myself personally and my colleagues, we have spent some time in Brussels and talked to many pro-politicians in Brussels, and we were extremely happy with the initiative by the European Parliament which adopted a resolution including a directive towards a commission, basically containing the wish that the European Commission would put into law legal framework stopping these kinds of extrajudicial arbitrary practices by payment facilitators, American-based Visa and MasterCard. So there is a clear understanding in the European Parliament that this must be stopped and we hope that that will be transferred into a pressure on the Commission to actually change this mind regarding the anti-trust case that has been filed in a complaint to the commission and open a very formal and broad-based investigation into the wrongdoing by these American-based card companies.


Robles: Now we talked about the United States and information that has been leaked regarding the US government corruption, war crimes etc. What about other countries: Australia, for example? Is it possible to move away from just the United States?

Hrafnsson: If we look at basically the motives around Wikileaks, it is not a organization that picks its targets, as a recipient of information from whistle-blowersand in the history of Wikileaks since 2006 prior to 2010 there were extremely important leaks coming from all parts of the world pertaining to corrupt governments in Africa, in Kenya, pertaining to corrupt banking practices from Swiss banks and Icelandic banks, pertaining to large international corporations revealing practices of toxic waste dumping etc. So, it was in progress especially with the US government, it was the revelations starting in 2010 that brought about this extremely strong reaction by the administration hand-in-hand with the big financial giants. It was something that was just a normal continuation of the work prior and I would hope that we will be able to receive and publish information on corrupt corporations and on corruption in countries all around in the world in the future. For that we need of course frineds, we need to be strong, we need to be able to offer that service on a wide basis into the future.

Robles: Listen, you’ve got your finger on the pulse, you see all kinds of information from all over the world. Do you see in all of this evil everywhere, do you see the US hand everywhere in the world, or is it pretty much independent “evil” going on, if you will, for lack of a better term?

Hrafnsson: Of course, it is obvious that with the status of the US in world politics there is a lot of evil that comes from that part of the globe, that goes without saying, but that doesn’t mean that that is the only source of evil, using your word.

Robles: Right. Right.

Hrafnsson: We of course, live now, in a world where politicians have less power than they did before and the powers are more in the hands of international financial conglomerates that have enslaved many nations’ individuals and those are entities that are almost without borders and operate often without the necessary oversights of politically elected governments. We are seeing evil in many corners and there are a lot of things to expose, to expose in order to turn the tide and basically try to get this world on a little bit healthier track.

Robles: I agree with you completely. Listen, isn’t there some other financial mechanism that people could use to support Wikileaks? I mean, have you thought of maybe using a Russian-based bank, for example, or something that the US is not involved in? Is that a real possibility, or do you think that’s unrealistic?

Hrafnsson: We had been looking into a wide range of possibilities, and what has been interesting to see is that thereare many attempts to create ways and means to bypass these all-powerful often American-based financial entities but these attempts are in infancy and they are in the experimental state. But it is a reflection of the fact that individuals all over the world are recognizing the very seriousness of giving so much power to these companies.

Let’s hope that this will grow in strength and in recognition and we can actually see an alternative independent way of exchanging money between hands without having to go through these dangerous gates of international companies, which have already shown the true nature of how they are willing to abuse their position of power.

the link:
"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage" Anais Nin .. and yet we must arm ourselves with fear

Offline Irien

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Part 3 of the interview:

My wish is to meet Bradley Manning as a free man very soon - Hrafnsson

John Robles Dec 27, 2012 10:55 Moscow Time

In the third part of our recent interview with Kristinn Hrafnsson, Kristinn talks about a Russian measure to form an independent banking mechanism that was the subject of diplomatic cables from the US and was susequently killed, US spying and information mining and profiling, communications analysis, Bradley Manning and Julian Assange. Kristinn makes the revelation that the entire foreign apparatus of the US was activated by banking concerns to stop the Russian measure.

In Russia there’s actually no way, without going through the US, to send WikiLeaks money. I mean I’d send you a 100$ right now if I could, but there’s really no mechanism from the Russian Federation to do that. Without, for example having a Visa Card or something and going through an American gateway!

Hrafnsson: Will since you brought it up it’s worth mentioning what was revealed in the diplomatic cables from Moscow was a discussion: I believe it was in 2006, around the initiative in the Duma to actually create a Russian processing mechanism taking the power from Visa and MasterCard.

It was argued, in the Duma, that this is necessary not just because of financial considerations because of all the money and transactions fees that were being sucked out of the country, also and not less importantly because of the security concerns around the sheer fact that all information about credit card use in Russia is now transferred outside the borders and stored in supercomputers in the United States and is easily accessible. So from a security and national security concern this was a grave concern.

Now, the cables show that Visa and MasterCard were able to mobilize the State Department and the entire foreign service of the United States to put a great effort to try to crush that initiative in the Russian Parliament, and somehow it died down and didn’t materialize. Now there is a thing to investigate for journalists in Russia. How did that come about? I’m curious to know the answer.

Robles: Everything, actually, that happens, financially almost, in the Russian Federation goes right to Langley or wherever. The NSA or whoever is recording and storing all of this information in the United States and for some reason a lot of Russian people have no problem with this, they don’t understand how dangerous that is and how that can be used to control and undermine the government and the country as a whole. How dangerous do you think that is?

One more thing because I have been thinking about this for the last few days, at the beginning of the Internet and everything, everybody was very concerned about their personal information getting onto U.S. servers, of course this includes banking information. And now it seems like people have kind of just begun to ignore that, they upload everything to Facebook and everywhere else, and people aren’t concerned about it. How dangerous and how far-reaching is the information mining by the U.S. Government?

Hrafnsson: It is extremely dangerous. This has been a concern of WikiLeaks all through. We’ve been trying to point out the grave dangers in the growing surveillance society that we live in and with the growing surveillance industry that we have actually exposed, in the Spy Files that we released last year, in December.

We live in a world where information is a commodity that is highly valued. We saw that in the last IPO of Facebook which was the biggest IPO in history, although this year value has dropped somewhat since then. People were eager to buy into information that was being submitted voluntarily for free.

Information is stored in supercomputers in many places, one is in a new facility erected by Visa a couple of years ago in an undisclosed location on the East Coast of the U.S. and it’s interconnected with fiber-optic cables to other computers in the world where all transactions are stored and shared between computers, so within 0.2 milliseconds, whenever a person strikes or slides his card in Moscow, the information is stored in a computer in the United States.

You can imagine what kind of profiling can be made on the basis of the information when it’s added other information available on the net. There’s active work in storing this and doing this profiling and we have that information because of whistleblowers from NSA. Personnel that have stepped out and have had to pay a dear price for that, and have informed how they were disgusted knowing in the last years how the NSA was being transformed into a spying machine, spying on the American public. And of course it is being used and this against information that is accessible from individuals from other nations, as well. It’s an extremely serious trend and something that people all around the world need to wake up to.

Robles: How far away, do you think, is the world from becoming a total cyber-security state and is there anything we can do to stop that?

Hrafnsson: We’re extremely close to that, given the technology. It’s now easy to store the entire telecommunications of an entire nation and to sort and analyze it. We’re getting extremely close to a scenario that George Orwell would never have dreamed of.

Robles: Is there anything we can do to fight that?

Hrafnsson: The most important thing is to start recognizing the problem and the scope of it. And I hope that WikiLeaks can be an instrument in providing information on this. In the hope that information is, will be, the first steps towards liberation.

Robles: Kristinn, thank you very much! Is there anything you want to finish up with?

Hrafnsson: I just want to add that today is Bradley Manning’s 25th birthday his third birthday behind bars without trial. He has been, of course, treated in an extremely shameful manner.

Robles: Shameful! I think that’s putting it very lightly!

Hrafnsson: I want to mention him in my final words and we think of the plight of this young man, who is a hero, in the hope that we’ll be able to meet him as a free man very soon, at least that is my wish. That is if he is indeed the source of the information that he is alleged to have leaked, he is one of the most important whistleblowers of recent times.

Robles: Real quick, I have to ask this question because people want to know. And how is Julian doing in the embassy?

Hrafnsson: He’s doing fine, considering the situation. Of course, it’s not easy to be locked away for all this time; it’s almost six months now. But he’s holding out pretty well, and in good spirits, good fighting spirits. So I would say he is in a relatively good situation given the circumstances.

Robles: Thank you very much for speaking with me again, I really appreciate it.