Cyber activists attacking organizations seen as foes of WikiLeaks briefly blocked a Dutch prosecution website after a 16-year-old boy suspected of involvement in the campaign was arrested in the country.
World Wide Wiki
The campaigners also tried to block the website of online payment firm Moneybookers, but denied their attacks were intended to create business turmoil or badly disrupt online Christmas shopping.
Several companies have ended services to WikiLeaks after it published thousands of secret U.S. diplomatic reports that have caused tension between Washington and several of its allies.
The website continued its release of U.S. cables this week, with the latest reports including a prediction by the U.S. ambassador to Cairo that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak would "inevitably" win 2011 polls and stay in office for life.
This week we saw the founder of WikiLeaks being arrested in London on a warrant from Sweden for sexually related charges that are being touted everywhere as 'bogus' and thought possibly to be a set up where an eventual extradition warrant to the U.S. for disclosing the inflamatory cables is seen as likely.
Where there are Friends, there are Foes
Acknowledging Osama bin Laden's death by a group of American Navy Seals this last week, the
'al Qaeda motley warrior' equivalent went into verbal action, proclaiming to avenge his death
by every means necessary.
Their 'veiled' threats, rambling in essence, but strikingly sinister in methodology, and called for unity of their brotherhood to rise up and strike at the very core of a nation - yet again - who dares to relish the demise of one of their beloved brethren.
President Obama stated when he addressed New Yorkers at Ground Zero this last week that it was foolish for anyone not to think that America would not eventually get their man. "We always do, what we say we are going to do," said Obama, who has decided against showing photographs and video footage of the slain al Qaeda leader, noting, that in so doing, would benefit no-one, but the repercussions of unleashing such material to the world would bring an even greater threat than it warranted.
Obama's detractors - namely the self-promotional former Republican Vice presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, who is seen as the political equivalent in news terms to Fox news, known to take preference in sensationalising the news, said that by showing photos of a dead bin Laden could only help to warn others who seek to destroy America and that Obama was only 'pussyfooting' around the issue.
The decision not to inflame an already volatile situation, with the world on 'high allert' even if a pin drops, is a sane one in anyone's language. Not the actions of an overindulgent Rambo.
Vengeance is mine, sayeth the Lord - but,
not when it comes to al Qaeda over the
death of one of their own
- Anne Hunt -
- Anne Hunt -
Dominique Strauss-Kahn is free to return to France as the case of rape against him collapses. The former International Monetary Fund leader who has said very little throughout this ordeal can now leave the United States having spent the last couple of months holed up in the swanky town home where he was kept under house arrest. He will still be facing yet another alleged sexual assault enquiry when he touches down on French soil.
Claims from novelist Tristane Banon in France over an attempted rape in 2002 are being investigated. Strauss-Kahn's lawyers have called her account "imaginary." This case becomes a touch incestuous when the alleged victim's mother had a torrid affair with the former IMF chief as well.
In New York, the case against Strauss-Kahn fell into a heap after prosecutors announced they no longer trusted the testimony of the hotel maid who accused him of attacking her in the luxury suite at the Sofitel Hotel on May 14th.
Although evidence showed there had been a sexual encounter with the Sofitel maid, Nafissatou Diallo's description of the chain of events and time line changed constantly, plus lies about a previous rape claim took away any credibility to her testimony.
By way of televised interviews of her experiences in her native home of Guinea, prosecuters pieced together major inaccuracies which sent up red flags.
It showed how she had embellished a gang-rape account only to enhance her 2003 application for political asylum as well as a telephone conversation that she had with a prison inmate highlighting the fact that the IMF chief had money and that she knew what she was doing.
As with many sexual assault cases, where the accused and the accuser are often the only witnesses, the Strauss-Kahn case hinged heavily on the maid's believability. The fact that her lawyer filed a lawsuit against Strauss-Kahn before any criminal case was even finalised may prove that her true intentions was merely a fleecing exercise.
- Anne Hunt -
(C 1996-2020) Affiliated Press International Foundationl/Admin/infoUS/Canada/Paris-Europe/Geneva/Australasia/Dubai/Singapore/Hong Kong/Japan
So much drivel is written about internet spying by the USA's 'NSA' (National Security Agency) and their PRISM software allowing them to access most servers and read personal emails or listen and look for buzzwords or anything that might affect National Security. However, only the really 'naive' would have presumed the USA Security Servces have NOT being doing this for a very long time. After all, surely 9/11 would be enough to make any Government paranoid about further attempts of a similar nature.
But it is the business of the people in the USA to worry about breeches of their Constitution or not. I would have thought their Patriot Act would have covered that issue. Perhaps not.
From where I sit at a distance I can only give an objective view which is - 'if the actions of NSA prevent another 9/11 it's hard to believe the people would not welcome any measures that were used to prevent it.'
However, here at home IN THE UK the question has been raised whether the USA are allowing the UK - or should I say the listening post at 'Bletchley Park' - under the auspices of 'GCHQ', to access this PRISM system for the UK's own National Security purposes. Protests from indignant 'privacy' groups may well have some merit, but is safety for the public more important than 'privacy indignities' or not?
Perhaps GCHQ cannot spy in that manner directly under UK laws, however, doing it indirectly through a USA server, would hardly be breaking any UK laws. As spying is a clandestine activity, at the best of times, how can spies be Governed by laws? If they are, don't call them 'spies - and to say the UK Security Services have not taken every known precaution to protect the UK from further attacks like 7/7 in 2005 would also be naive thinking. After all MI5, MI6 and MI7 appear to have thwarted countless terrorist attempts since 7/7 and I doubt they have been using Gypsy Rose Lee's crystal ball to do it!
Do people believe if that were the case and they were looking for buzz words on telephone calls and emails, they would be really interested in your private emails to 'Betty the Bonking Mad Trollop from Bermondsey' or you arranging a tryst with your secretary behind the missus' back. Come on, be rational. Do you want another terrorist incident of mammoth proportions in the UK? I think trusting the Security Agencies is one safe thing. They have a one track purpose. But, trusting the Police with such powers is entirely another matter - now that's an argument with far more merit. That is when we have to say, 'who is guarding those guards'?
Only last week men dressed in Burkas smashed into Selfridges' Jewellery cases and stole £1 million in watches. Men dressed in Burkas have often gotten away with many crimes in the UK - even trying to flee the country. In France they are not allowed to hide their faces behind a cultural mask like a Burka. In a world where facial recognition software protects many nations from atrocities, why is the UK so damn tolerant. This may all be seen as 'Big Brother' stuff, but if discretion is applied, and we don't trust Security Agencies, then our entire approach to National Security should be under revision. This IS a very different new world we live in. Ban not only Burkas but hoods as well. It is NOT a question of religious beliefs. It's more a question of an abuse of 'religious opportunity.' So, why not ban face coverings. After all, DON'T WE really WANT a SECURE COUNTRY 'before anything else.'
- Anne Hunt -
GCHQ Listening Post, Cheltenham, United Kingdom