by Jack Mirkinson
January 12, 2011
Julian Assange revealed that he has damaging "insurance
files" on Rupert Murdoch and his
News Corp media empire that he will release
if something happens to him or to WikiLeaks.
Assange made the revelation
in a conversation with journalist John Pilger
that appeared on the website of the New Statesman magazine on Wednesday.
"If something happens to me or to WikiLeaks, 'insurance' files will be
released," Assange told Pilger.
He said that the contents of the files,
"speak more of the same truth to power... there are 504 US embassy cables on
one broadcasting organization and there are cables on Murdoch and News
Assange also said that any attempts by the U.S. government to prosecute him
should worry the American press.
"I think what's emerging in the
mainstream media is the awareness that if I
can be indicted, other journalists can, too," he said.
- Exclusive interview -
The WikiLeaks Founder Talks to John Pilger
Julian Assange on Murdoch, Manning and The Threat From
by New Statesman
12 January 2011
WikiLeaks founder, Julian
Photo: Getty Images.
In this week's New Statesman, the WikiLeaks
founder Julian Assange talks to John Pilger about Bradley
Manning, his "insurance" files on Rupert Murdoch and
News Corp -
and which country is the real enemy of
The "technological enemy" of WikiLeaks is not the United States, but China,
according to Assange.
"China is the worst offender" when it comes
to censorship, says the controversial whistleblower.
"China has aggressive and sophisticated
interception technology that places itself between every reader inside
China and every information source outside China. We've been fighting a
running battle to make sure we can get information through, and there
are now all sorts of ways Chinese readers can get on to our site."
On Bradley Manning, the US soldier accused of
diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks, Assange
"I'd never heard his name before it was
published in the press."
He argues that the US is trying to use Manning -
currently stuck in solitary confinement in the US - to build a case against
the WikiLeaks founder:
"Cracking Bradley Manning is the first
step," says the Australian hacker. "The aim clearly is to break him and
force a confession that he somehow conspired with me to harm the
national security of the United States."
Such conspiracy would be impossible, he says.
"WikiLeaks technology was designed from the
very beginning to make sure that we never knew the identities or names
of people submitting material. We are as untraceable as we are
uncensorable. That's the only way to assure sources they are protected."
Yesterday, Assange's lawyers warned that if he
is extradited to America he could face the death penalty - for
leaders of the US government.
"They don't want the public to know these
things and scapegoats must be found," Assange says.
And despite the pressure the website has been
under, reports of trouble at WikiLeaks are greatly exaggerated, he claims.
"There is no 'fall'. We have never published
as much as we are now. WikiLeaks is now mirrored on more than 2,000
websites. I can't keep track of the spin-off sites - those who are
doing their own WikiLeaks... If something happens to me or to WikiLeaks,
'insurance' files will be released."
The contents of these files are unknown, but,
according to Assange,
"They speak more of the same truth to
It is not just government that should be worried
about the content of these files, however.
"There are 504 US embassy cables on one
broadcasting organization and there are cables on Murdoch and News
Corp," he says.
The attempts by Washington to indict him should
mainstream press, he adds.
"I think what's emerging in the mainstream
media is the awareness that if I can be indicted, other journalists can,
too," Assange says.
"Even the New York Times is worried. This
used not to be the case. If a whistleblower was prosecuted, publishers
and reporters were protected by the First Amendment, which journalists
took for granted. That's being lost."