"We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks"

The WikiLeaks Organization's Annotated Transcript, with Response from the Filmmakers

Introductory Note

On May 23, 2013, a day before our documentary "We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks" was released into theaters, the WikiLeaks organization published the following transcript and commentary about the film. WikiLeaks's annotations to the movie purported to reveal it as inaccurate and misleading, a corporate-funded hit job on the embattled organization and its founder, Julian Assange.

Because the film hadn't yet been released, readers couldn't have known that what WikiLeaks had posted was a flawed transcript, rife not only with errors but with unmentioned omissions. Some time later, after having marketed this "transcript" of the film to millions of people, they amended the document, removing the most egregious mistakes and restoring everything they had left out. Of course, this amendment was published well after the transcript had been read and shared by its target audience.

We are choosing to respond now—not to the document posted on WikiLeaks website today, but to the one they originally promoted, which unfortunately reached so many people. We think it important to address the confusion and misconceptions created by that widely-read version, rather than the one comparatively few have seen.

How to Read It

Of course, we don't recommend the reader actually plunge into this document immediately. We're standing by our original position on the matter: that films, including documentaries, are made to be seen, not read. Not long ago, when asked about movies he liked, Assange said that he enjoyed Paul Thomas Anderson's "There Will Be Blood." Would he judge that famously terse film by its script? Probably not. Films should be judged as films, with all of their elements taken together to provide meaning.

Therefore, we recommend the following: If you haven't seen it yet, go watch the movie. It's out on Netflix, iTunes, DVD, and everything else. Judge for yourself whether it is intended to be anti-WikiLeaks, anti-Assange, anti-Manning, anti-American, or anti-anything else. Perhaps you'll find it a "twisty, probing, altogether enthralling movie," as New York magazine put it. Or a "moving story of hubris, good intentions and mistakes," as the Washington Post has written. If so, you'll be in line with the vast majority of reviewers, who loved the film.

When you're done watching, come back to this document if you'd like and start reading, both WikiLeaks's comments and our notes. We try to approach their comments as fairly as we can. When they catch us making a mistake, we admit it. When they have a valid point—even when it's buried deep below a heap of not-so-valid points—we try to pull it out, brush it off, and address it. Unfortunately, as the reader will see, WikiLeaks's notes contain less wheat than chaff. As with other disappointed admirers of the organization, we wish it were otherwise.

- The "We Steal Secrets" Team





WikiLeaks's Introduction to the Transcript

Filmmakers' Response
WikiLeaks's Commentary
The documentary was indeed funded by Universal Pictures. However, the amount of funding is wrong, and not by an insignificant degree.

It's also misleading to say that this "commission" (which WikiLeaks seems to equate with the "budget") went to the director, Alex Gibney. For directing the film, Gibney received a typical salary in accordance with the guidelines of the Directors Guild of America, far below the amount WikiLeaks would imply he was paid. The DGA rate card for 2013-2014 can be found here. Their summary of documentary agreements in particular can be found here.

The budget WikiLeaks refers to was used for two years of research that spanned the globe, including dozens of filmed interviews in Iceland, England, Germany, Sweden, Australia, and the United States. It also included equipment rentals, licensing fees, finishing costs, legal and insurance fees, screening costs, the salaries of the remainder of the crew, and all other things it takes to make a film.

This document is an annotated transcript of the anti-WikiLeaks documentary "We Steal Secrets: The story of WikiLeaks". It opens on May 24, 2013 (tomorrow). The documentary was commissioned by Universal for $2 million. The commission went to US film maker Alex Gibney, who is listed as the film's director and producer.

The main assertions here are false, as anyone who has seen the film can attest. The only accurate statement here is that the "stock footage has...been heavily edited." This is true. Over the course of two years we reviewed hundreds of hours of footage, including scores of talks by, and interviews of, Julian Assange. We ourselves conducted nearly one hundred hours of filmed interviews. Compressing hundreds of hours of footage into a two hour film requires "heavy editing." It also requires one to be deliberative and precise. Throughout this editing process, we took great care not to distort the positions of anyone featured.

The detail of WikiLeaks's claims will be covered below, in our notes to the transcript.

The film is filled with factual errors and speculation, the most serious of which are set out below. The stock footage used has also been heavily edited, in some places distorting what was said. This is unprofessional and irresponsible in light of ongoing legal proceedings. It trivialises serious issues.

The film implies – and in some cases suggests, erroneously and when evidence is to the contrary, that Assange may be guilty of conspiring with Bradley Manning. This not only factually incorrect, but it buys into the current US government position that journalists and publishers who receive information can be prosecuted as co-conspirators with their alleged sources or with whistleblowers wanting to communicate information to them. This is a dangerous proposition for all journalists and media organisations — not just WikiLeaks.

Bradley Manning, one of WikiLeaks’ alleged sources, is currently being court-martialed for committing "espionage" (by communicating with the press) and "aiding the enemy" (by communicating with the press). He is defending those charges in a 12-week trial which commences on 3 June 2013.

Neither Julian Assange nor anyone associated with WikiLeaks agreed to participate in this film. Any footage of Assange or WikiLeaks’ staff was taken from stock footage. WikiLeaks has, however, co-operated with a film by the well respected Academy Award nominated film maker, Laura Poitras, which will be out later this year. Another film, co-produced with Ken Loach's 16 Films, will be released shortly.

The documentary's transcript is in the right column. The annotations and citations are on the left.





WikiLeaks's Annotated Transcript

Filmmakers' Notes
WikiLeaks's Commentary
WikiLeaks's Transcript of the Film



It would have been wise for WikiLeaks to abide by an old adage: Never judge a book by its cover.

As they themselves admit in their note, we don't attribute the statement to them: it's a quote from Gen. Michael Hayden, former CIA and NSA director. The title is clearly a provocation, based upon the commonly-held misperception that WikiLeaks uses underhanded tactics to find and publish leaks. People who watch "We Steal Secrets" can see that we approach the organization in an even-handed way, lauding them for their good work and criticizing them for their mistakes. Indeed, many people have said that they respect WikiLeaks more after having seen the film. One wouldn't get this impression if they were to merely read WikiLeaks's notes.

Of course, WikiLeaks is careful to say that "not even critics in the film" say they steal secrets. That's because it's been reported that the organization was founded by doing just that.
Note: The title ("We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks") is false. It directly implies that WikiLeaks steals secrets. In fact, the statement is made by former CIA/NSA director Michael Hayden in relation to the activities of US government spies, not in relation to WikiLeaks. This an irresponsible libel. Not even critics in the film say that WikiLeaks steals secrets.
TITLES
Galileo is not a rocket. It's a spacecraft launched aboard the space shuttle Atlantis. This isn't an overly important point in itself. However, WikiLeaks's transcript is littered with these small inaccuracies, revealing the carelessness of their work.
The film starts with the launch of the rocket Gallileo and the WANK worm introduced into NASA's system by unknown hackers prior to the launch.
Footage of launch of Gallileo.
John McMahon was a network administrator at NASA, not a scientist.

More to the point, while it's apparent in retrospect that the worm was a prank, at the time it was a frightening thing. They seem to ignore what McMahon himself says: "We didn't know what it would do. We knew it was malicious." Our presentation puts the viewer in the moment, building tension carefully before releasing it. It's not selective editing, just good filmmaking.

Also, it's strange for WikiLeaks to call WANK "a practical joke." Assange thought it was more important than that when he called it "the origins of political hacktivism." We join WikiLeaks in recommending Dreyfus and Assange's book, Underground, for a good, detailed account of the case.
Note: Selective editing. The interview is edited to cut out the NASA scientist's punch line--no files were, in fact, deleted. It is apparent that the "worm" was a practical joke. The whole episode is extensively documented in the book "Underground" by Julian Assange and Suelette Dreyfus.

Source: Click here.
NASA scientist:
It was a Monday morning a few days before launching Gallileo. My manager rang me as soon as I came in and they said that there was a worm that had been detected somewhere out on the network. A worm is a self-replicating program that actually breaks into a computer and jumps from system to system. At the time they were still very uncommon. We didn't know what it would do. We knew it was malicious. If a worm got into a machine it would change the announcement message and spelled out in little lines and little characters W.A.N.K - Wank, Worms Against Nuclear Killers - and below that "You talk of times of peace for all and then prepare for war". Oh my god, what the hell is this? Most people didn't know what the word 'wank' meant.
"The word meant 'F'."

Actually, McMahon says, "The worm made a panic." Just as with the "Galileo rocket" and the "NASA scientist" mistakes above, WikiLeaks made many careless errors while transcribing.
The word meant 'F'. You would be logged into your machine and you'd get a message: Someone is watching you, vote anarchist. And suddenly they'd see "deleted file 1, deleted file 2, deleted file 3" and just keep going and going and going. And it would change the passwords, so you couldn't get in to stop it. Scared the hell out of a lot of people. They were afraid that Wank would cause the launch failure, where this nuclear battery was suddenly flying away from an exploding spacecraft…
Audio voiceover of NASA launch countdown
NASA scientist:
How in the hell are we going to stop it? How far's it gone already?
Footage of launch of Gallileo.
What WikiLeaks neglects to say is that Assange's hacking group was in fact suspected of being involved in the WANK case.

The line from the worm did turn out to be a clue: it pointed to the likelihood of a young, politically-motivated Australian. It took the police a long time to track the worm to Australia, which might not have been the case if they had not ignored this evidence.

Midnight Oil is indeed a famous Australian rock band. One of Assange's former colleagues in Australia confirmed to us that they were one of Assange's favorites. Perhaps that was why he was able to quote them so effortlessly in the interview we excerpt from, more than a decade after his work on the book Underground.
Note: No person has ever claimed responsibility for the WANK worm. Gibney's "key clue" is merely that Assange, along with most of his generation, had also listened to the internationally famous Australian rock band Midnight Oil.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The shuttle launched without incident. But the WANK worm continued to spread, affecting over 300,000 computer terminals around the world. Its purpose, as a warning, weapon or political prank was never discovered. Investigators traced the origin of the WANK worm to Australia. National police suspected a small group of hackers in the city of Melbourne, and then the trail went cold. But a key clue turned out to be in the message itself. There was a lyric from the Australian band, Midnight Oil, a favourite of the man who would become the country’s most infamous hacker.
Note: Selective editing. Assange is quoting the lyric in relation to his book, written with Suelette Dreyfus, which includes a chapter on the WANK worm.

Source: Click here.
Cuts to voice of Julian Assange quoting this line from the Midnight Oil song over the song itself
Collage of videos about WikiLeaks and various public comments about WikiLeaks, some positive, some scaremongering, over Midnight Oil song.
Stock footage from a July 2010 interview with Julian Assange conducted by ABC Nightline's Jim Sciutto.
STOCK
Journalist:
What drives you?
Julian Assange:
Well, I like being brave. I mean, I like being inventive, I've been designing systems and processes for a long time. I also like defending victims. And I am a combative person so I like crushing bastards. And so this profession combines all those three things, so it is deeply, personally, deeply satisfying to me.
Journalist:
But is crushing bastards, in its own right, a just cause?
Julian Assange:
Depends on the bastards.
Mark Davis:
I see this story entirely as one man against the world. One man against the world.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
Julian as this very radical visionary.
Gavin MacFadyen:
Julian was onto something really extraordinary.
Nick Davies:
He is extremely clever, brave, dedicated, hard-working guy with a brilliant idea that he managed to execute.
At no time did we say that the WikiLeaks organization "enter[s] where it is not supposed to go." We also do not say that this is what Assange himself does today. By framing it in this way, WikiLeaks is trying to distract from the actual claim: that Assange had a history of accessing information he was not privy to, whether it was his early hacking of Australian telcoms or his use of information pulled from Tor to seed WikiLeaks's publishing activities.

Nothing in our narration here says that WikiLeaks is not a publisher. In fact, the film makes it clear here and elsewhere that this is one of WikiLeaks's primary functions.
Note: WikiLeaks is a publisher. It does not "enter where it is not supposed to go".
WikiLeaks is a not-for-profit media organisation. Our goal is to bring important news and information to the public. We provide an innovative, secure and anonymous way for sources to leak information to our journalists (our electronic drop box). One of our most important activities is to publish original source material alongside our news stories so readers and historians alike can see evidence of the truth. We are a young organisation that has grown very quickly, relying on a network of dedicated volunteers around the globe. Since 2007, when the organisation was officially launched, WikiLeaks has worked to report on and publish important information. We also develop and adapt technologies to support these activities.
Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian Assange was obsessed with secrets, keeping his own and unlocking those of governments and corporations. The internet is not a good place for secrets. Cyberspace is like a galaxy of passage ways, constantly moving streams of data. With a simple computer anyone can enter and explore. That's what Julian Assange liked to do: explore. He liked to use trap doors to enter where he wasn't supposed to go. To find secrets and expose them. He built a machine for leaking secrets and called it WikiLeaks. The website boasted an electronic drop box and could receive secrets sent by people who didn't want to reveal who they were. Once WikiLeaks had the secrets it would publish them across servers, domain names and networks so numerous that the information could never be taken down.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
So this is what you’ll see if you go to the front page of the website. This is WikiLeaks, we help to get the truth out. We want to enable information to go out to the public that has the greatest chance of achieving positive political reform in the world. To get things to the public you need to protect sources who want to disclose and you also need to protect your ability to publish in the face of attack.
Robert Manne:
His thinking is: how can we destroy corruption? It's the whistleblower. Julian Assange is neither a right-wing libertarian nor a standard leftist. I think he is a humanitarian anarchist. A kind of John Lennon-like revolutionary, dreaming of a better world.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
If we are to produce a more civilized, a more just society it has to be based upon the truth.
Heather Brooke:
When I heard Julian speak I was struck by his vaulting idealism and forthrightness about what he believed in. Totally uncompromising about freedom of speech. I agreed almost entirely with everything he said and I had never experienced that before. So I thought he was amazing.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
Every week we achieve major victories in bringing the unjust to account and are helping the just.
Nothing that WikiLeaks did before—or after—2010 attracted anywhere near the amount of attention that their 2010 releases did. Google search statistics for the organization's name make this clear.

By focusing on 2010, we do nothing to diminish their work before that year. Indeed, much of the work, including these cases that we cite, was quite impressive. But they were by all objective measures smaller successes than the releases in 2010, which captured the attention of the world. This was why we called them "smaller". It has nothing to do with their inherent quality.
Note: Gibney collapses four years of publishing history, touching on nearly every country in the world, into "some smaller successes" -- because his documentary does not cover them. In fact, WikiLeaks has been making front pages since 2007. Legal attacks on the organization started immediately. WikiLeaks won a significant battle against the largest private Swiss bank in US federal courts in 2008. That fight was the subject of extensive discussion, including New York Times editorials.

There were many significant WikiLeaks releases and conflicts prior to 2010.

For a comprehensive list, consult the archives at Wikileaks.org. The archives can also be browsed by country or by year of release.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Before WikiLeaks was frontpage news, there were some smaller successes. The website published evidence of a tax-avoiding Swiss bank, government corruption and murder in Kenya and a secret company report on illegal toxic waste dumping. One early leak was from the National Security Agency: frantic text messages from desperate workers trying to save lives on 9/11. 9/11 turned out to be the watershed moment for the world of secrets – both for the leakers and the secret-keepers.
Michael Hayden:
After 9/11 we were accused of not being willing to share information rapidly and fastly enough and we’ve pushed that very far forward.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Michael Hayden is an expert on secrets. He’s been the director of the National Security Agency and the CIA.
Michael Hayden:
In terms of our focus the default option in a practical sense has been to share it, rather than caging in information and making it more difficult to flow.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In the years after 9/11, facing enemies it didn't understand, the US government started sharing more information between different agencies. At the same time, the US also started to keep more secrets from its citizens. In data centers that sprang up all over the country the US launched a massive expansion of its operations to gather secrets. The amount of classified documents per year increased from 8 million to 76 million. The number of people with access to classified information soared to more than 4 million and the government began to intercept phone calls and emails at a rate of 60,000 per second. Nobody knows how much money is involved – it’s a secret. Not even Congress knows the entire budget.
Bill Leonard:
The classification system can be a very effective national security tool when it is used as intended; when it is used with precision.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
During the Bush administration, Bill Leonard was the classification czar - the man charged with overseeing what information should be secret.
Bill Leonard:
The whole information environment has radically changed – just like we produce more information than we ever produced in the history of mankind, we produce more secrets than we ever produced in the history of mankind and yet we never fundamentally re-assessed our ability to control secrets.
"Fishing" and "bait" are strong words. However, they imply nothing about criminality. Many good journalists "fish" for information from their sources; indeed, it's a fundamental aspect of reporting. Why it is troubling to WikiLeaks is unclear. Believing in a reporter's right to ask a source for confidential information does need mean that one "buys into the dangerous proposition that journalists and publishers can be conspirators by virtue of their interaction with confidential sources." It means that one believes in the right of a free press to investigate power, not least by the painstaking work of unearthing hidden wrongs by asking sources for information about them.
Note: Gibney's choice of words, “Fishing,” “Bait”, implies solicitation.

Throughout the film, Gibney propagates the idea Assange had been “fishing” for the leaks or that Manning had been “persuaded” to leak. This is factually incorrect but also buys into the dangerous proposition that journalists and publishers can be conspirators by virtue of their interaction with confidential sources. The US government is attempting to argue that any news organization that deals with confidential sources can be put into prison for engaging in "conspiracy".

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.

See the note immediately above. Also, whatever they may say on their website, WikiLeaks has for many years solicited confidential information from the public at large. When a leak-publishing organization publishes a list of desired leaks, then goes to conferences asking people to "capture flags" by sending them information on the list, it is indeed soliciting information.
Gibney makes a careless error that shows poor fact-checking. WikiLeaks makes clear on its website that, like "other media outlets conducting investigative journalism, we accept (but do not solicit) anonymous sources of information".

Source: Click here.

This is a distraction, meant to obscure our actual claim. We do not attribute the writing or compilation of the 2009 Most Wanted Leaks list to Julian Assange. We in fact say that Assange "published a list," not compiled or wrote one.

Note: This is another instance in which we highlight their role as a publisher.
Gibney falsely attributes the 2009 "Most Wanted Leaks" list to Julian Assange. It was compiled by human rights NGOs, activists, lawyers, journalists and historians nominating the censored documents they considered the most important to uncover.
WikiLeaks requests nominations for 2009's Most Wanted Leaks—the concealed documents or recordings most sought after by a country's journalists, activists, historians, lawyers, police, or human rights investigators.

You may securely and anonymously add your nomination by editing this page. WikiLeaks will then prioritize the list and seek to obtain the leading candidates directly, through the legal system, or indirectly through its network of journalists, intelligence sources, volunteers and readers.

Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In this environment of expanding secrecy, Assange went fishing for secrets to publish. To bait whistleblowers, he published a list of the most wanted leaks.
Michael Hayden:
Those of us who've been in this business a long time knew that this day would come. Knew that because we'd removed all the watertight doors on the ship, once it's started taking on water it would really be in trouble.
This blank spot in the script is the biggest error in WikiLeaks's original "transcription". At this point in the film, an online chat between Manning and hacker Adrian Lamo appears onscreen, in the manner of an instant message, as if the viewer is seeing them type the exchange out before their eyes. It appears as plain text, unaccompanied by audio. In this personal exchange, which continues throughout the film, Manning reveals how she leaked information to WikiLeaks. These chats give Manning the chance to speak for herself and make clear both her political motivations for leaking and her personal motivations for confessing. They are also, as reviewer after reviewer has noted, the heart and soul of the film. The fact that WikiLeaks omitted the chats without explanation was not only an offense against the film, but against Manning. Instead of giving a full explanation of their motives, they simply ignored their presence completely or include brief comments, such as "Text from the alleged chat logs between Adrian Lamo and Bradley Manning appears on screen."

Three possibilities come to mind for why WikiLeaks left Manning's words out:
  1. Duplicity - In their attempt to portray the film as "anti-Manning," they decided to simply lie about its contents and exclude material about the film that they preferred the reader not know about.
  2. Ego - The film makes clear not only how vital Manning was to WikiLeaks's fame and fortune, but how much more sympathetic a political figure she is than Assange. It's possible that WikiLeaks does not share our view of where praise is mostly due in the case of Manning's leaks, and decided that eliminating Manning from the transcript was one more way of evening the scales.
  3. Carelessness - They only had an audio copy of the film, so they could not include words that the viewer only sees and does not hear. Instead of waiting to actually see the film and publish a transcript with Manning's words, they decided it was more important to rush an incomplete copy to their website. As the film shows, WikiLeaks has erred before while wanting to rush publication, taking much graver risks than this.
Note: After we criticized them extensively and publicly for the omission described above, WikiLeaks admitted their error by amending the transcript to include Manning's words. However, in order to more properly correct this offense for the thousands of people who read the original, erroneous transcript, we are including each of the removed chats in a more pronounced format, as so:

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
hi...how are you?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
im an army intelligence analyst deployed to eastern baghdad.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
lets just say “someone” I know intimately well... has been penetrating US classified networks, mining data...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
its important that it gets out...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
it might actually change something.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
information should be free...
Cut to footage of newscaster reading report of Icelandic bank crash.
STOCK
Newsreader:
In Iceland winter is never easy but this year much of the pain is manmade. Last October all three of Iceland's banks failed. Normally stoic and proper, Icelanders have started protesting.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In July 2009, WikiLeaks fuelled a growing popular rage when it published a confidential internal memo from Kaupthing – the largest failed bank in the country.
Heather Brooke:
WikiLeaks had got hold of the Kaupthing loan book, which showed what was going on in a lot of those Icelandic banks. They had credit ratings which were completely at odds with their actual credit-worthiness.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
It was all insiders, they took out billions of dollars out of this bank and bankrupted the thing, shortly before it went bankrupt anyways.
We say that Domscheit-Berg was "the second full-time member," which is entirely true.

More generally, this note is characteristic of WikiLeaks's strategy of diminishing and denigrating all former employees and colleagues who they now disagree with. A typical tactic is to act is if they did not play an important role at WikiLeaks; in fact, many were key members while there.

Indeed, it is irrelevant whether Gibney spoke to present-day WikiLeaks members. The focus of the film was on a moment in time in which many of those who spoke to Gibney were working with or for WikiLeaks. It is interesting in itself how many of those people have fallen out with the organization.

Of course, WikiLeaks's denials regarding Domscheit-Berg's key role in the organization have been the most acute. Assange has said that Domscheit-Berg was merely "an intern" at WikiLeaks; here WikiLeaks says that he was a "full-time volunteer." It is strange that someone so unimportant to the organization would, for years, at event after event, join the founder in representing WikiLeaks in talks, panels, and keynotes. He was an important member of the organization, on par with Assange. The fact that WikiLeaks denies this now is a strange refusal to confront reality.
Note: It is false that Daniel Domscheit-Berg was the second full-time employee of WikiLeaks. He volunteered full-time for WikiLeaks during 2009. He was uninvolved in WikiLeaks for most of the significant events of 2010, until he was suspended in September of that year.

Gibney lacks access - WikiLeaks staff declined his interviews - and therefore tries to boost the CVs of those he was able to interview, no matter how peripheral their actual role.

Source: Click here.
Translation: Click here.
More: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
A German IT technician, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, became the second full-time member of WikiLeaks.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
We met online first and then we met personally in December 2007 at the Chaos Communication Congress in Berlin. He was not the stereotypical hacker you would expect. He looked completely differently, he was interested in completely different topics.
It's odd for WikiLeaks to call this "False."

We agree that those other leaks are significant—indeed, that's why we mention two of them earlier in the film. We just disagree that they were "bigger successes" for WikiLeaks than the Kaupthing leak. Assange was never a celebrity in Kenya, Switzerland, or the Cayman Islands. He was one in Iceland. In the end, it's a simple disagreement of opinion. There is nothing factual—nothing that could be labeled "False"—on either side.
Note: False. Here Gibney shapes the narrative to fit his access. For example, in 2007 WikiLeaks uncovered billions of dollars' worth of corruption in Kenya, a leak that made front pages around the world, and is widely viewed to have changed the results of the Kenyan 2007 Presidential Election. In 2008 WikiLeaks defeated the largest private Swiss bank in US courts after revealing its Cayman Islands trusts, costing the bank hundreds of millions as it cancelled its scheduled US IPO. However these leaks pre-date Domscheit-Berg's substantive involvement.

For a comprehensive list, consult the archives at Wikileaks.org. The archives can also be browsed by country or by year of release.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
For Daniel and Julian, the Kaupthing leak was their biggest success to date.
Smari McCarthy:
Loan book came out and took the country by storm. The national broadcaster was going to do a big segment on it and they got slapped with an injunction.
Footage from Icelandic television with subtitles.
Birgitta Jonsdottir:
It was the first time in our history that a gag order was placed on the state TV not to produce the news just before they were supposed to produce it. So instead of doing nothing, they decided to put the website up.
Footage of Icelandic television announcement about WikiLeaks.
Smari McCarthy:
Up pops WikiLeaks.org with the Kaupthing loan book front and centre and everybody goes online and checks it out. And the guys at WikiLeaks definitely got massive props for that.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Later that year, a group of young cyber activists from Iceland invited representatives of the WikiLeaks organisation to come speak at a conference in Reykjavik.
Birgitta Jonsdottir:
Iceland and WikiLeaks really fit. This is something we really need in our society. The media failed us so we decided to meet them.
Smari McCarthy:
Up until the day before the conference we didn't know who was going to come. It could be a massive organisation or it could be a tiny organisation.
STOCK
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
Doesn't it work? Ok.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
In the beginning we had no funding at all. We were not set up with manpower nor organisationally so there was a lot to improvise.
STOCK
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
WikiLeaks, we have to mention that what we are doing right now is still a proof of concept so in technical terms we are in the Beta stage, so it's just...
Julian Assange:
[Jumps in] But, wait, we're not in a Beta stage. We're not in a Beta stage as far as... we're in a gmail Beta stage, but we're not in a Beta stage in terms of our ability to protect people. In terms of...
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
[Cuts in] If you could let me finish my sentence...
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
It was really an off-world experience in some way because we were just so famous over there.
STOCK
Interviewer:
You work for WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks is now very famous in Iceland because of the big Kaupthing leak.
Julian Assange:
You know, we got this letter from the Kaupthing lawyers telling us that under Icelandic banking secrecy law we deserved one year in prison, so we thought we would come to Iceland
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
And see for ourselves.
Julian Assange:
And see for ourselves.
Footage of Julian Assange at a protest in Iceland.
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Julian Assange:
The bankers should be put on public trial and given the justice they deserve. More power to you, Iceland.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian teamed up with Birgitta Jonsdottir, a poet turned politician, to hatch a plan to turn Iceland into a haven for freedom of information. But Julian was also preoccupied with a new source, one with access to classified US government materials and a willingness to leak them.



Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
the video came from a server in our domain! and not a single person noticed
Footage of Collateral Murder.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
airstrike on Reuters Journos... some sketchy but fairly normal street-folk...and civilians
Narration by Alex Gibney:
It was an onboard video of an Apache helicopter gunship on patrol in Iraq.
More video footage from Collateral Murder.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
A half-mile above the ground, it was invisible to the people below.
More video footage from Collateral Murder.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Two of the men killed worked for the Reuters news agency. What had looked like a weapon from the sky, turned out to be the long lens of a camera.
More video footage from Collateral Murder.
This is a good example of WikiLeaks acting more as film critic than as fact-checker. The footage we describe is exactly what WikiLeaks is referring to. We simply don't add additional words to a video that doesn't need them: the viewer can watch the scene for themselves and judge the horror of the moment for themselves.
Note: Alex Gibney does not mention that the Collateral Murder video contains clear evidence of a war crime. In the aftermath of the first attack a passing van stops in order to render aid to the injured. The Apache helicopter crew is eager to fire on the van and its occupants, including two children. The ensuing attack kills a further four people. None of them were armed.
This is misleading. It's presented as if it's in reference to our film, when in fact it's McCord talking about the helicopter attack itself.

That aside, it's also not clear to be true. McCord says it's a crime. It may be. But many informed observers have concluded otherwise. It may be that—as horrible as the moment was—the soldiers involved were properly following the military's rules of engagement. Just a bit later we include Assange's comment at the National Press Club acknowledging that
If those killings were lawful under the rules of engagement, then the rules of engagement are wrong—deeply wrong.
The inclusion of this quote by Assange gives a succinct summary of the perspective of the film.
A US soldier who was present, Ethan McCord, states:
This is where I start to have a problem. This is not following the rules of engagement, they’re embellishing information and it’s wrong; this constitutes a war crime.

Source:
Click here.
Video: Permission to Engage: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Inside the van were two children who were wounded in the hail of cannon fire.
More video footage from Collateral Murder.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i just...couldn’t let these things stay inside of the system
and inside of my head...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
im just, weird I guess.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i... care?
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In March 2010, Assange and a team of Icelandic activists holed up in a rented house in Reykjavik to edit and prepare the video for publication.
Footage of Birgitta Jonsdottir visiting the house where it took place.
Birgitta Jonsdottir:
We did most of our work here. This was the operation on the table.
Stock video footage of the WikiLeaks team working on Collateral Murder inside the house together.
Smari McCarthy:
It was chaotic and hectic and also sort of very varyingly frayed nerves. Eventually, I went out and bought a bunch of post-its and kind of... [laughs] tried to figure out what it was we needed to do.
Birgitta Jonsdottir:
My horrific task was to go through the entire movie and pull out the stills to put on the website, and at the same time I was learning who these people were that I could see their flesh being torn off their bodies.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The army claimed it was engaged in combat operations against a hostile force. But it also began a criminal investigation. It turned out that the driver of the van had been a father taking his children to school.
More video footage and sound from Collateral Murder.
Birgitta Jonsdottir:
The curtains were drawn. But I never had any sense that we were being watched, not physically. But we joked a lot about it. We were like all becoming super-paranoid.
Smari McCarthy:
It wasn't really cloak and dagger stuff, it was just, you know, yes, another cool project.
Birgitta Jonsdottir:
Everybody thinks it was all huddled, you know, with the computers, and it was all very serious, but we actually had an incredible time. The second last night we all went out and we were all wearing the same silver snow suits [laughs]
Stock footage of Julian Assange with Jonsdottir and others at a volcano. Jokes about “lava leaks”.
Birgitta Jonsdottir:
It was an incredibly intimate time because we were all working closely. We were working on something that we knew that could get us into serious trouble and we were all willing to take that consequence.
Stock footage of Washington DC press conference.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
So, my name is Julian Assange. I am the editor of WikiLeaks. [Someone asks Assange to spell his name] Julian with an A. Assange...
Robert Manne:
What's clear about him is he became a public figure extraordinarily quickly. It was really April 2010 where he went from relative obscurity into an absolutely central world figure and he did it deliberately, I mean he knew what he was doing. He decides to take on the American state, in public.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The team posted the unedited video on the WikiLeaks website. They also posted a shorter version, edited for maximum impact. Julian titled it “Collateral Murder".
Cuts to footage of reaction to Collateral Murder release.
STOCK
Newsreader:
No surprise it's getting reaction in Washington.
White House press spokesperson Robert Gibbs
STOCK
Robert Gibbs:
Our military will take every precaution necessary to ensure the safety and security of civilians.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
The behaviour of the pilots is like they are playing a computer game. Their desire was simply to kill.
Montage of news reports on Collateral Murder inquiry.
STOCK
Newsreader:
The Pentagon says that it sees no reason to investigate this any further.
STOCK
Newsreader:
An internal inquiry found that the journalists' cameras were mistaken for weapons but the rules of engagement were followed.
Cut to footage of Julian Assange from 2010.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
If those killings were lawful under the rules of engagement, then the rules of engagement are wrong – deeply wrong.
Michael Hayden:
You've got this scene, somebody evidently troubled by the scene - frankly, I'm not - but I can understand someone who's troubled by that, and someone who wants the American people to know that, because the American people need to know what it is their government is doing for them. I actually share that view - when I was director of CIA there was some stuff we were doing I wanted all 300 million Americans to know. But I never figured out a way about informing a whole bunch of other people that didn't have a right to that information who may actually use that image, or that fact or that data or that message, to harm my country.
Bill Leonard:
From a national security point of view, there was absolutely no justification for withholding that videotape, not one. Gunship video is like trading cards among soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's freely exchanged back and forth.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
funny thing is...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
we transferred so much data on unmarked CDs

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
everyone did...videos...music...movies

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
all out in the open

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bringing CDs to and from the networks was/is a common phenomenon

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i didnt even have to hide it
Bill Leonard:
What's even more disturbing is that it was one in a series of efforts to withhold images of facts that were known.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Reuters knew its employees had been killed. The news agency requested the video but the army refused, claiming the video was classified.
Bill Leonard:
The fact that innocent people were killed in that helicopter attack, that was a known fact that was not classified.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
A record of the incident and a word-for-word transcript of the pilots' conversation had already been published in a book called “The Good Soldiers” by a writer embedded with the army. The army later confirmed that the information was not classified, yet the army would prosecute the man who leaked the video to WikiLeaks. What kind of games was the army playing? Why was a transcript less secret than a moving image?
Bill Leonard:
Clearly the government recognizes the power of images. But the ultimate power of image is that it helps people understand what it is, this fact is that we all know. Flag-draped coffins help us understand the consequences of sending our children off to war. Pictures of detainee abuse in Abu Ghraib help us understand exactly what was taking place. Video of that unfortunate occurrence where innocent people were killed helps us understand that this is an inevitable consequence of war.
News footage of press conference
STOCK
Julian Assange:
We can't discuss our sourcing of the video.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
the reaction to the video gave me immense hope...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
Twitter exploded

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i want people to see the truth...regardless of who they are

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
because without information you cannot make informed decisions as a public.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
or maybe im just young, naive, and stupid...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
which one do you think it is?
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Adriam Lamo is known as the homeless hacker, a couch-surfing computer infiltrator who had been convicted of hacking into the New York Times. In 2010, not long after the release of the Collateral Murder video, Lamo used twitter to urge his followers to donate to WikiLeaks. Only one day later he was contacted by someone with the screen name “bradass87”.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


(1:40:51) Unverified conversation with bradass87 started

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: hi...how are you?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: im an army intelligence analyst, deployed to eastern baghdad...
Adrian Lamo:
Frankly, I didn't find what he had to say all that interesting at first, not until he started making references to spilling secrets.

Note that WikiLeaks inserts this brief note in place of the following chats, so that they can say that they did not ignore the chats entirely. What they left out was the following:

Text from the alleged chat logs between Adrian Lamo and Bradley Manning appears on screen.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: hypothetical question: if you had free reign over classified networks...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: and you saw incredible things...awful things

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
awful things

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
things that belonged in the public domain

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
what would you do?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
info@adrianlamo.com: What are the particulars?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: things that would have an impact on 6.7 billion people

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
a database of half a million events during the iraq war...260,000 state department cables...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
let's just say *someone* i know well, has been penetrating US classified networks, mining data...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
and uploading it to a crazy white haired aussie who can't stay in one country very long...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
crazy white haired dude = Julian Assange
As "We Steal Secrets" shows, Lamo did indeed manipulate Manning. If WikiLeaks had not omitted their chats, as noted above, this would be clear to the reader of the transcript.

Furthermore, it should be noted that WikiLeaks provides no evidence that Lamo was "a researcher for WIRED magazine." Instead, they link to an article that seems to detail a close source-journalist relationship between Lamo and Wired journalist Kevin Poulsen.

WikiLeaks makes a few other small mistakes here. Lamo does not claim to be a priest. He claims to be a minister, of the Universal Life Church. Moreover, in California, clergy are not registered with the state. They are ordained or invested by a denomination.
Note: In fact, the alleged chatlogs between Lamo and Manning show that Lamo started slyly manipulating and exploiting Manning immediately. Lamo was a researcher for WIRED magazine (owned by Conde-Naste). He claimed that he could protect Manning under journalist-source confidentiality laws then also claimed he could additionally protect Manning under Californian Confessional laws (as he was a registered priest). When WIRED magazine first published the alleged logs, these references were censored, allowing Lamo to lie to the press about what they contained. Later publication of the alleged logs make the duplicity clear.

Source: Click here.

WIRED's censorship of the logs has been attributed by journalist Glenn Greenwald to the close personal relationship between Adrian Lamo and WIRED section editor Kevin Poulsen.

Source: Click here. Source: Click here. Source: Click here.
Adrian Lamo:
At that point I knew that this wasn’t some kind of game. It was for real and that I was going to have some very hard choices. In Star Trek every prospective commanding officer is expected to pass a test called "Kobayashi Mari".
Footage from Star Trek movie.
Adrian Lamo:
The test cannot be passed. It is there to see how they deal with a no-win situation.
More footage from Star Trek.
Adrian Lamo:
In this case, it was a no-win situation deciding what to do with it. No matter what you do, you're gonna screw somebody over.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Unsure what to do, Adrian contacted Tim Webster, a friend and former army counter-intelligence agent.
Once again, in the chats WikiLeaks omitted, "We Steal Secrets" is quite clear about Lamo's duplicity in regard to promises of confidentiality. It also shows Lamo's eagerness for public attention via the media. WikiLeaks may not have gotten either of these wrong if they had actually seen the film. Both of these elements require a viewer to see the footage rather than merely read a script.

WikiLeaks has other details here wrong:
  1. It's strange for WikiLeaks to claim that "the alleged chat logs make clear [that Manning] had already lost his security clearance." In fact, the chat logs completely contradict this. In the logs, Manning tells Lamo:
    at the very least i was able to keep my security clearance
    [so far]
  2. WikiLeaks writes that Manning "was being discharged from the US Army in relation to another issue." Manning suffered several consequences from the "issue" (i.e. punching another soldier, which we cover later in the film). She was demoted from specialist to private first class; the bolt was removed from her rifle; and, finally, a psychiatrist recommended that she be discharged. However, this was still just a single recommendation that had yet to be acted upon. Contrary to what WikiLeaks writes, Manning was not "being discharged."

  3. WikiLeaks writes that Manning had "already lost...his access." In fact, Manning still had access to hundreds of thousands of classified records. As Denver Nicks reports in his excellent book, Private: Bradley Manning, WikiLeaks, and the Biggest Exposure of Official Secrets in American History:
    Brad was reassigned to work in a supply room unconnected to the SCIF [Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility]... Where he once analyzed enemy activity, he now spent his days moving boxes. But the supply room was also outfitted with a SIPRnet computer [i.e. the network Manning had exfiltrated the State Department cables from], and, despite the demotion and his manifest emotional instability, he'd still retained a TS/SCI security clearance.
Note: In fact, as the alleged chat logs make clear, Manning had already lost his security clearance, his access, and was being discharged from the US Army in relation to another issue. Despite this and Lamo's promises of confidentiality, Lamo not only became an informer, but immediately pushed the story out through WIRED magazine, issued nine press releases, gave dozens of interviews, and campaigned for Assange's extradition.
Timothy Webster:
Adrian called me and he said "What would you do if somebody had approached you and said hey, I'm leaking secrets". I thought it was a pretty stupid question because of course Adrian knows exactly what I would have done in the situation.
Jason Katz was fired from Brookhaven for "inappropriate computer activity" months before the FBI's investigation into the Manning leaks started. Presumably, WikiLeaks is correct in saying that he was fired for helping them attempt to decrypt a video. However, the attempt to decrypt the video, which WikiLeaks claims was of the 2009 Garani incident, failed. In the end, rather than being fired for contributing to uncovering a war crime, Katz was dismissed for inappropriately using Department of Energy computing resources.

WikiLeaks is correct that Lamo actively attempted to inform on other people. Another example revealed in court was his attempt to implicate Manning's friend, Danny Clark. There was of course consideration of including these incidents in our film. In the end, we felt that we gave a fair portrait of Lamo in the limited amount of time we had available to do so.
Court records show that Lamo actively attempted to inform on other people well after the Manning arrest, including Jason Katz, a physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory, who he alleged helped WikiLeaks decode the encryption on a US Airforce massacre video. Katz was fired and swept up into the ongoing FBI investigation against WikiLeaks as a result of his alleged contribution to uncovering a war crime. People close to him were forced to testify against him at the WikiLeaks grand jury. None of this is covered by Gibney.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.

Alex Gibney:
What would you have done?
Timothy Webster:
Well, of course turned him in. There's nothing else you can do in that situation. But Adrian was on the fence about it ethically. On one hand, here was this kid leaking all this classified information - could potentially cost lives - on the other hand, he was this kid who reached out to Adrian in confidence and trusted him. And Adrian took that pretty seriously. He indicated he didn’t know who this person was, there was just a screen name. So very quickly of course the first thing anybody would be interested in is: who is this guy?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
info@adrianlamo.com: hey you...around?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: yeah

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
info@adrianlamo.com: why talk to me?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: because im isolated as fuck.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: my life is falling apart...i don't have anyone to talk to

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
info@adrianlamo.com: I'm a journalist and a minister…
treat this as a confession or an interview

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
(never to be published) & enjoy a modicum of legal protection.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
but i'm not a source for you...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
i told you, none of this is for print

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
i want to know who i am supporting

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i guess i can talk a little about myself…

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i was born in central Oklahoma...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
a highly evangelical town...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
with more church pews than people

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i was a science fair buff... won grand prize 3 years in a row

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i didnt like getting beat up or called gay... so i joined sports teams

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i also started playing around more and more with computers

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
questioned my gender for several years…
sexual orientation was easy to figure out.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
info@adrianlamo.com: I'm bi myself...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
bradass87: im aware of your bi part

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i don't know what to call myself
Jason Edwards:
I first met Bradley Manning at a New Year's Eve party. It was a 1930s theme party. I was the Prince of Wales and Brad showed up without any kind of costume or persona. I looked at him and he was small and had this kind of ingenue expression on his face, this bright blonde hair so I said, oh, Jean Harlow.
Chelsea (formerly Bradley) Manning actually enters the film long before this. It is only because WikiLeaks chose to omit all of her words from the transcript that the user could be given the impression that this is her entrance. This is part of WikiLeaks's attempts to discredit the film by painting our director, Alex Gibney, as insensitive, or even bigoted, towards Manning's gender status and sexuality. While we believe Manning's personal issues were relevant to our story and to issues of whistleblowing, anyone who watches "We Steal Secrets" will see that we handle those personal issues delicately. They will also see that we give a lengthy and clear picture of Manning's political conscience.
Note: Selective editing. By introducing Bradley Manning in this way, Gibney establishes Manning's character in the context of an alleged gender confusion. This context is reinforced through constant repetition over the next few minutes of the film, in order to leave a lasting impression on the audience. This is Gibney's frame for Manning's alleged acts throughout the entire documentary: that his alleged acts represent a failure of character, rather than a triumph of conscience. In an interview, Gibney stated that:
The initial presentation of the story was that Bradley Manning was a pure political figure, like a Daniel Ellsberg. I don’t think that’s a sufficient explanation of why he did what he did. I think he was alienated; he was in agony personally over a number of issues. He was lonely and very needy. And I think he had an identity crisis. He had this idea that he was in the wrong body and wanted to become a woman, and these issues are not just prurient. I think it raises big issues about who whistleblowers are, because they are alienated people who don’t get along with people around them, which motivates them to do what they do.
Source: Click here.

This "crude gay caricature" is a version of a classic attack on whistleblowers, once used on Daniel Ellsberg: to distract from acts of conscience by focusing on sexuality, character, psychology and alleged "issues," rather than conscience, motive and morality. In order to carry out this attack, it is necessary for Gibney to ignore the explicit statements as to motive given or alleged to be given by Bradley Manning himself. From the alleged chatlogs between Manning and Lamo:
god knows what happens now. hopefully worldwide discussion, debates, and reforms. if not... than we’re doomed as a species. i will officially give up on the society we have if nothing happens. the reaction to the video gave me immense hope... CNN’s iReport was overwhelmed... Twitter exploded... people who saw, knew there was something wrong. [...] i want people to see the truth... regardless of who they are... because without information, you cannot make informed decisions as a public
Source: Click here.

This does indeed give a good picture of Manning's political conscience. We recommend reading the complete plea statement, significant portions of which we included on the DVD version of our film. Regardless, despite WikiLeaks's implications to the contrary, we include similar statements from Manning in the film itself, in the portions WikiLeaks left out.
From Bradley Manning's plea statement of February 28, 2013:
...the people in the bongo truck were merely attempting to assist the wounded. The people in the van were not a threat but merely "good samaritans". The most alarming aspect of the video to me, however, was the seemly delightful bloodlust they appeared to have. They dehumanized the individuals they were engaging and seemed to not value human life by referring to them as quote "dead bastards" unquote and congratulating each other on the ability to kill in large numbers. At one point in the video there is an individual on the ground attempting to crawl to safety. The individual is seriously wounded. Instead of calling for medical attention to the location, one of the aerial weapons team crew members verbally asks for the wounded person to pick up a weapon so that he can have a reason to engage. For me, this seems similar to a child torturing ants with a magnifying glass. While saddened by the aerial weapons team crew's lack of concern about human life, I was disturbed by the response of the discovery of injured children at the scene. In the video, you can see that the bongo truck driving up to assist the wounded individual. In response the aerial weapons team crew – as soon as the individuals are a threat, they repeatedly request for authorization to fire on the bongo truck and once granted they engage the vehicle at least six times. Shortly after the second engagement, a mechanized infantry unit arrives at the scene. Within minutes, the aerial weapons team crew learns that children were in the van and despite the injuries the crew exhibits no remorse. Instead, they downplay the significance of their actions, saying quote "Well, it's their fault for bringing their kids into a battle" unquote. The aerial weapons team crew members sound like they lack sympathy for the children or the parents. Later in a particularly disturbing manner, the aerial weapons team verbalizes enjoyment at the sight of one of the ground vehicles driving over a body – or one of the bodies. [...] For me it's all a big mess, and I am left wondering what these things mean, and how it all fits together. It burdens me emotionally. [...]

I hoped that the public would be as alarmed as me about the conduct of the aerial weapons team crew members. I wanted the American public to know that not everyone in Iraq and Afghanistan are targets that needed to be neutralized, but rather people who were struggling to live in the pressure cooker environment of what we call asymmetric warfare. After the release I was encouraged by the response in the media and general public, who observed the aerial weapons team video. As I hoped, others were just as troubled – if not more troubled that me by what they saw. [...]

For me, the SigActs represented the on the ground reality of both the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. [...] I believe that if the general public, especially the American public, had access to the information contained within the CIDNE-I and CIDNE-A tables this could spark a domestic debate on the role of the military and our foreign policy in general as [missed word] as it related to Iraq and Afghanistan. I also believed the detailed analysis of the data over a long period of time by different sectors of society might cause society to reevaluate the need or even the desire to even engage in counterterrorism and counterinsurgency operations that ignore the complex dynamics of the people living in the affected environment everyday. [...] [I] stated I had information that needed to be shared with the world. I wrote that the information would help document the true cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. [...] I considered my options one more time. Ultimately, I felt that the right thing to do was to release the SigActs. [...]

The more I read the cables, the more I came to the conclusion that this was the type of information that should become public. I once read and used a quote on open diplomacy written after the First World War and how the world would be a better place if states would avoid making secret pacts and deals with and against each other. I thought these cables were a prime example of a need for a more open diplomacy. Given all of the Department of State cables that I read, the fact that most of the cables were unclassified, and that all the cables have a SIPDIS caption. I believe that the public release of these cables would not damage the United States, however, I did believe that the cables might be embarrassing, since they represented very honest opinions and statements behind the backs of other nations and organizations.
Source: Click here.
On the screen Bradley Manning's face is morphed onto Jean Harlow's.
Jason Edwards:
Wrote that on a name tag, slapped it on his chest and we went on with the rest of the evening. When I met him at the party, he made no mention to me that he was in the army. This came as a surprise to me.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
in desperation to get somewhere in life…
i joined the army... height of iraq war
Narration by Alex Gibney:
To get government money for college, Bradley Manning enlisted in the army. In 2007, he began basic training. He was 19 years old. Just weeks after he started he was sent to a discharge unit to determine if he should stay in the army.
US Army colleague:
My locker was next to his and that's when I met him. Nobody puts their sister's picture - with him posing next to his sister - there. It was kinda weird but we knew right away that he was gay, it was like so obvious. So... Not that I have a problem with it.
US Army colleague:
He was small, a little bit effeminate and that made him like public enemy one for drill sargeants to beat that marching into him. We're talking professional army - 30, 40 year old people that would pick on him just to torment him.
Alex Gibney:
And what happened? Did he get discharged?
US Army colleague:
No. The funny thing is, he was the least army material of anybody there and they all got discharged and he didn’t.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Instead of discharging Manning, the army decided to make him an intelligence analyst.
US Army recruitment video for intelligence roles
US soldier:
There's a lot of points that go with the job. I'm in charge of security, document security, physical security, personnel security, like people's clearances. Does it make me feel like James Bond a little bit? Yeah, to some degree. What would I like the public to know about the army? We love what we do.
Interview with Jihrleah Showman, a prosecution witness at Manning's pre-trial hearing
Jihrleah Showman:
He was definitely what society would label as a computer nerd. He was constantly up all night building specific computer programs.
Alex Gibney:
So he was unusually adept at computers?
Jihrleah Showman:
He was probably the first person in the military that I had met that is as talented as he was with computers. But I had to pull him aside several times for his lack of sleep. He was desperately addicted to soda. He drank approximately a litre to two litres every night, so he literally did not sleep, ever. One time he was late for formation and he had a very public display physically. He was jumping up and down, flailing his arms, screaming at the top of his lungs, and to me, I had never seen a soldier do that before. It had to be something else, a seizure or something like that because it was very radical body movement. But it wasn’t something else. He didn’t like messing up. He had to have everything perfect. I actually recommended three times that he not deploy.
Audio of Bradley Manning's voicemail greeting.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In October 2009, Bradley Manning was sent to Iraq, posted to Forward Operating Base Hammer just outside of Baghdad.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
here its hot, dry...and fucking hot

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
[double emphasis on hot]
Jihrleah Showman:
We were the furthest FOB east that you could go out of the Baghdad area. It was definitely the best, most uneventful place you could have been deployed to. We never had any enemy fire. We could walk around without battle gear. We had a full gym, there's pool tables, basketball court. We had a little movie theatre, we had a Pizza Hut, a Burger King, a place to get your hair cut, a place to get a massage. We had air-conditioned living quarters - you could actually get cable and internet in your room. It was literally just a home away from home.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
im in the desert, with a bunch of hyper-masculine trigger happy ignorant rednecks as neighbors...
Footage of cheerleaders performing at Forward Operating Base Hammer.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
yes, football cheerleaders…

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
part of Morale Welfare and Recreation projects

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
>SHRUG<

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
for whatever reason, im not comfortable with myself...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
no-one knows who i am inside...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
the CPU is not made for this motherboard...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
and the only safe place i seem to have is this satellite internet connection

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
my speciality is tracking a Shi'a group...
they make al-Qaeda knock offs look like kids
Jihrleah Showman:
When you receive intel in it's extremely raw. A lot of the times it's even in Iraqi so we have to actually get it translated and build a product so the commander can actually make military decisions.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
But much of the information available to Manning’s intelligence unit had nothing to do with day-to-day combat operations. All of the analysts had access to central computer networks for the armed forces and the State Department. With a few keystrokes a skilled user could gain access to vast streams of classified emails, memos and reports from around the world.
Alex Gibney:
Why was it that Private Manning had access to all that information?
PJ Crowley:
Now look, firstly the mindset changed after 9/11 from a need-to-know to a need-to-share, and the database that he had access to was a representation of the need for one hand of government to share broadly information about its activities with another agency of government.
Alex Gibney:
How many people had access?
Michael Hayden:
It's a hard question to answer.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Manning was regarded as one of the smartest intelligence analysts in the unit, but more than others he became increasingly distressed by the reports he was seeing.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Excerpt from War Log:
Date: 2009-05-02

"DISCOVERED MULTIPLE DETAINEES WHO APPEARED TO HAVE BEEN ABUSED BY [IRAQI POLICE]...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Excerpt from War Log:
[KILLED]

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Excerpt from War Log:
Date: 2005-06-14

"OPEL DISREGARDED ALL HAND AND ARM SIGNALS... MARINES ENGAGED THE FRONT GRILL... ENGAGED THE DRIVER... ENGAGEMENT RESULTED IN 7X CIVILIANS KILLED (2X WERE CHILDREN)."
Note that this is how WikiLeaks summarizes the following story from Manning
Chat logs between Adrian Lamo and "Bradass87" on screen.
At this point in the film, Manning tells a moving story of her increased politicization upon deployment to Iraq. WikiLeaks later accuses the film of ignoring the fact that Manning became more politically conscious upon deployment, then gives this same story as an example, neglecting the fact that it is a key moment in the film. By omitting the chat from the film, WikiLeaks guarantees that the reader does not know that.

What makes it more shameful is that Manning leaked information about this incident to WikiLeaks, but they chose not to publish in part because it would not attract enough "international media attention."

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
the thing that got me the most...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film



Manning:
15 detainees taken by the Iraqi Federal Police…
for printing "anti-Iraqi literature"

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i found out that it was a benign political critique titled
"Where did the money go?"

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
*ran* to the officer to explain what was going on...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
he told me to shut up and explain how we could assist…
in finding *MORE* detainees.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
everything started slipping after that...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i was actively involved in something
that i was completely against...
Jihrleah Showman:
He back-talked a lot. He constantly wanted to debate. He wanted to be the person that disagreed with everybody. We had a separate little conference room, it had a doorway but it didn't have a door that you could close and he'd go in there and just scream.
Note that this constitutes WikiLeaks's entire description of the following exchange:
More chat logs on screen.




Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i can't believe what im telling you

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
ive had too many chinks in my armor :'(

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
im a broken soul

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
info@adrianlamo.com: *hug*

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
*hug*

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
thank you :'( it means a lot

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i dont know what im going to do now...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Adrian Lamo:
keep typing <3
Footage from Mark Davis' documentary "Inside WikiLeaks".
Mark Davis:
I was trying to trace him after the Collateral Murder video, but he's a pretty evasive guy. He doesn’t have a home, he doesn’t have an office, so it was no easy task. I’d been chasing him for weeks and had one phone contact with him but I heard that he was speaking in Norway so I jumped on a plane. Turned up in Oslo and sort of, you know, shadowed him for a few days until things started to click.
Footage of Julian Assange's speech at the Oslo Freedom Forum.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
This is not the virile democracy that we had all dreamed of, this is an encroaching privatised censorship regime. [applause]
Footage of Julian backstage after speech.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
So embarrassing
Mark Davis:
What's that?
Julian Assange:
Having that camera in my face.
Mark Davis:
At that time he had an underground following, of which I was aware. He's Australian, he's from Melbourne, but he had no public profile really.
STOCK
Mark Davis:
WikiLeaks is not the first time you've come to the attention of the Australian public. Of course you had another controversial period when you were involved with a group that was essentially trying to penetrate military computer systems. What was the motivation there?
Julian Assange:
Well, there was two motivations for it. One was just the intellectual exploration and the challenge to do this, so if you're a teenager at this time so the government... This was before there was public access to the internet – this was an incredibly intellectually liberating thing, to go out and explore the world with your mind.
Footage from an Australian news programme about hackers
STOCK
Interviewee:
They're not someone who kills their victim, dismembers them and cuts them into small pieces, hackers do far more damage than that.
Newsreader:
Hackers, the mystery operators of the internet. In the eyes of the law, they're criminal, but who are they?
Robert Manne:
There was a really interesting period in Melbourne in the early 90s. There was a few places on earth that really clicked into the internet, pre-internet. There was also a sense of rebelliousness, a sort of an alternative political culture in Melbourne. All those things converged and Julian was absolutely the core part of it. It was almost a cliché – the teen hacker.
Footage from the movie War Games.
STOCK
Actor:
72,000,000 people dead? Is this a game, or is it real?
Robert Manne:
Their struggle was against the state and they thought the triumph of intelligent individuals over the possibility of state surveillance - that's the heart of what they were doing. And Julian Assange, who at that point was a young hacker, got into that world and he became the central figure.
As a young hacker, Julian Assange went by the online moniker "Mendax," which can mean "nobly untrue" or "noble liar." His insistence of the nickname's Quinean self-referential nature is fun. It's also completely irrelevant.

We don't attribute too much significance to the handle in our film. But the fact that he used it, not only in self-reference, but also in reference to himself, is interesting given his pragmatic relationship with telling the truth. As the "Secrets & Lies" documentary, our interviewees, the New Yorker, and scores of other commentators can attest, we're far from the only ones to find his use of the handle to be telling. It's hardly "fabrication."
Note: Here Gibney fabricates the significance of one of Julian Assange's teenage screen names "Splendide Mendax" (from the classical author Horace). He does so throughout the film. The screen name is a joke. In Latin it means "Nobly untrue", but as a pseudonym it describes how handles protect an author's identity even though being inherently "untrue". It is a phrase which describes itself, not its author, just like the word "word".
"Claims my teenage nickname was Mendax, “given to lying”, instead of Splendide Mendax, “nobly untruthful”, which is a teenage joke on handles being inherently untrue. It is self-referential, not a psychoanalysis 20 years ahead of its time!"
— Julian Assange, Complaint to Ofcom regarding the Guardian co-produced Secrets & Lies documentary, January 9, 2012.

Source:
Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The group was called the International Subversives. Among them was Julian Assange, known by the online name of Mendax, short for a Latin phrase meaning “noble liar”.

Note that we make clear at this point both that Assange's group were suspects in the WANK incident and that they were never proven to be involved. WikiLeaks ignored both of these points when criticizing the film for its portrayal of the WANK case.
Hackers in Melbourne were also suspects in the Wank worm attack but their involvement was never proven. Two years after the Wank worm Assange was implicated in another hack.
Footage from Australian news coverage of Assange's 1994 court case for hacking into Nortel.
STOCK
Newsreader:
Julian Assange allegedly accessed computer systems around the world through weak links in the internet system, meaning the whole computer opened up to him and he could walk around like God Almighty.
Ken Day:
Hackers have this belief that we are getting a police state, that information is being hidden from the broad community, that...
Editing abruptly cuts off.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Ken Day was an Australian expert on hackers and the first person to investigate Julian Assange as part of an undercover sting called Operation Weather.
Ken Day:
It was a difficult case because it was only the second time we had done an investigation in this particular style, so we were still learning. What we did was capture the sound going across the telephone line so we could see what was typed and the signal coming back.
Note that the source WikiLeaks cites for Assange's "Golden Rule" was a book that Assange himself co-wrote, nearly a decade after he was caught hacking into an array of important systems. (As the transcript shows, a moment later in the film Assange himself says, "We had a backdoor in the US military security co-ordination centre. This is the peak security, or development of security, of mil.net, the US military internet. We had total control over this for two years.")

We never pretend that his motivations in hacking were malicious. Instead, as the prosecutor in the case explains, there was arrogance mixed in with the desire to explore.
Note: Julian Assange set out his group's Golden Rules as follows:
Don’t damage computer systems you break into (including crashing them); don’t change the information in those systems (except for altering logs to cover your tracks); and share information.
At his eventual trial, the judge recognised that Assange's actions had not been malicious, had caused no damage and had been motivated by intellectual curiosity.

Source:
Underground: Tales of hacking, madness and obsession on the electronic frontier, by Suelette Dreyfus: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The hackers had broken into the US Air Force, the Navy and the US Defence network that had the power to block entire countries from the internet.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
We had a backdoor in the US military security co-ordination centre. This is the peak security, or development of security, of mil.net, the US military internet. We had total control over this for two years.
Ken Day:
The internet was a new frontier for people to go out and express themselves, that "I'm there, I'm the first, I'm the all-powerful". This is a common theme with people that are hackers. It was all ego-driven, I'm the best.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian was charged with 29 counts of penetrating, altering and destroying government data. The defence asked the court to be lenient because Assange had lived a difficult childhood, continually moving from city to city with no lasting relationships.
Robert Manne:
His only constant connection with the outside world was the internet.
Note: In fact, the judge said:
There is just no evidence that there was anything other than sort of intelligent inquisitiveness and the pleasure of being able to — what's the expression — surf through these various computers.
Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
After a five-year investigation and trial, Julian pled guilty to 24 hacking offences. He was sentenced to 3 years on probation.
Ken Day:
He believed that what he was doing was not wrong and probably rues the day that he pled guilty. Julian does not like being judged. His rationalization is yeah, I've been convicted but it was unjust, it's unfair, I'm a martyr. He didn’t accept it.
Robert Manne:
Julian once had quite a rigid political view. He's always believed that there's these secrets that need to be discovered, and at 17, 18 Julian was looking at stuff that he couldn't quite understand – it's all in acronyms, it's descriptions of movements here and there, of weapons or of troops. He wasn't ready to do anything with it. Indeed, he waited 20 years to see it again and when he saw it again he knew what to do with it this time.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Months before he received the helicopter video, Assange was trawling through hacker conferences looking for leaks.
Footage of Julian Assange speaking at 2009 convention.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
Why am I talking to you guys at all? Well you know, you haven't captured a flag in the contest here but we have our own list of flags and we want to capture them, and so if you google for WikiLeaks' Most Wanted 2009 you will see a list of documents that if you are in a position or you know someone who's in a position to get this material, you get it, give it to us, no questions asked, and you will help change history.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
One month into Manning’s deployment, WikiLeaks published the 9/11 pager messages. Manning took notice.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
they released the 9/11 "pager messages"

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
recognized they were from an NSA database
and i felt comfortable enough to come forward...
Julian Assange's legal representatives were indeed not allowed to respond to insinuations about Assange at Chelsea Manning's trial. Of course, Assange was not on trial, and the insinuations have not affected his legal standing.

Note that the film says that Manning was "in online chats with WikiLeaks," not with Assange. In the providence hearing statement that WikiLeaks links to in the next note, Manning testified to court:
Due to the strict adherence of anonymity by the WLO, we never exchanged identifying information. However, I believe the individual was likely Mr. Julian Assange [he pronounced it with three syllables], Mr. Daniel Schmidt [i.e. Daniel Domscheit-Berg], or a proxy representative of Mr. Assange and Schmidt.
As the film later reveals, in Manning's address book, she had at one time used the name "Julian Assange" to refer to the person she was chatting with.
Note: No evidence has been adduced in the Bradley Manning proceedings to prove the person Manning was communicating with was Julian Assange. Despite this lack of evidence, in pre-trial hearings the US government prosecutor continually refers to Julian Assange as being the person communicating with Manning. Julian Assange has been denied formal legal representation in the Manning proceedings. His legal representatives at the proceedings have been denied the ability to object to the US government’s unsubstantiated allegation. Gibney repeats this allegation without supporting evidence.

Narration by Alex Gibney:
Only days later he saved Julian Assange’s contact information to his computer. Then, taking a cue from the WikiLeaks’ Most Wanted list, Manning began searching for CIA detainee interrogation videos on the classified networks to which he had access. Like other whistleblowers, he felt a moral obligation to leak specific information the public should know. In that context, he first offered up a military video. But in online chats with WikiLeaks, Manning’s thoughts changed – either he decided or he was persuaded – that he should capture more flags; a lot of flags.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i went on leave in late january / early february...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
99.9% of people coming from iraq and afghanistan
want to come home, see their families, get laid...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i...wanted to try living as a woman

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i rode the train...from DC to Boston
cross-dressed, full on... wig, breastforms, dress, the works
By using the term "or he was persuaded," the film tries to make clear the possibility that, like other journalistic organizations, WikiLeaks can and does have personal relationships with their sources that may affect the amount and type of materials that they receive, even if the source remains anonymous to them.
By using the term “or he was persuaded” the film tries to implicate Wikileaks in a conspiracy to obtain classified material from Manning. The film makes this suggestion without basis – and it has since been proven to be factually incorrect: Manning makes clear in his pre-trial statement that no one at WikiLeaks pressured him into giving any information and that he made his own decision to send documents:











Manning's persistent willingness in her trial to take full responsibility for the leaking of the documents is admirable, especially given the fact that she later perceived the dynamic she had with her WikiLeaks contact to be less than real. In the court testimony that WikiLeaks links to, Manning says:
The anonymity that was provided by TOR and the Jabber client and the WLO's policy allowed me to feel I could just be myself, free of the concerns of social labeling and perceptions that are often placed upon me in real life. In real life, I lacked a closed friendship with the people I worked with in my section, the S2 section... For instance, I lacked close ties with my roommate [due] to his discomfort regarding my perceived sexual orientation. Over the next few months, I stayed in frequent contact with Nathaniel [her WikiLeaks contact, who she believed to be Assange, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, or a "proxy" for them]. We conversed on nearly a daily basis and I felt that we were developing a friendship.

Conversations covered many topics and I enjoyed the ability to talk about pretty much anything, and not just the publications that the WLO was working on. In retrospect I realize that that these dynamics were artificial and were valued more by myself than Nathaniel. For me these conversations represented an opportunity to escape from the immense pressures and anxiety that I experienced and built up through out the deployment. It seems that as I tried harder to fit in at work, the more I seemed to alienate my peers and lose the respect, trust, and support I needed.
Manning's assertion that she was not "pressured" adds evidence to support WikiLeaks's claim that no one at the organization in fact pressured her. But this is not strong evidence against her being "persuaded," which is a quite different claim. We assert that Manning had a more typical source-to-journalist relationship with WikiLeaks than the organization has admitted. The content of their conversations "on nearly a daily basis" over a "few months" is almost entirely unknown. If WikiLeaks made no attempt, over the course of months, to persuade such an important source of the desirability of leaking additional information, it would reflect very poorly on their abilities as investigative journalists.
From Bradley Manning's plea statement, February 28, 2013:
No one associated with the WLO pressured me into giving more information. The decisions that I made to send documents and information to the WLO and website were my own decisions, and I take full responsibility for my actions."
Source: Click here.

Throughout the film, Gibney propagates the idea Assange had been “fishing” for the leaks or that Manning had been “persuaded” to leak. This is factually incorrect but also buys into the dangerous proposition that journalists and publishers can be conspirators by virtue of their interaction with confidential sources.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.

Narration by Alex Gibney:
While Manning was playing with a new identity, he was also imagining a new role for himself. He visited his boyfriend in Boston and went to a party at a college hacker space, where he was caught on camera. During this period, maybe even at this moment, Manning had in his possession nearly 500,000 classified documents about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. While on leave he contacted the Washington Post and New York Times, but neither showed interest - Manning sent the War Logs to WikiLeaks.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i'm quite possibly on the verge of being
the most notorious "hacktivist"...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i wouldn't mind going to prison for the rest of my life
or being executed...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
if it wasn't for the possibility of having pictures of me…
plastered all over the world press...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
as a boy.
As the film reports, there are myriad problems with the U.S. government's classification system, many of which derive from the huge numbers of people who have clearance. However, WikiLeaks indicates a misleading idea of how the clearance system works. Four million people did not have "the same access" to the materials that Manning had. Security procedures differ from installation to installation; there are additional restrictions put into place by "need to know" regulations.

It's clear that security procedures were too lax at Manning's base. Later in the film, we take the government to task for focusing on Manning, while ignoring the superiors who left so much valuable information available for download. But that's no reason to be misleadingly hyperbolic about the availability of the information.
Note: The selection of US news clips used here shows carelessness towards the facts.

The materials allegedly leaked by Bradley Manning were all at the level of Secret or below, comprising low-level classified or unclassified military reports, emails and cables to which up to 4 million federal employees or contractors had the same access. The reference to Top Secret information in the clips obscures this fact.

Source:
Click here.

Montage of US news clips.
This is misleading. Not only is WikiLeaks ignorant of conflicting claims made by the military, it neglects the fact that the film earlier explores in detail the classification status of the material, and the games the Army played with that status.
The video of the Apache helicopter gunship attack - now known as Collateral Murder - was found to be unclassified, yet these clips used by Gibney twice state that it was classified material.

Source:
Click here.
STOCK
Newsreader:
Good Morning... how would an army private allegedly gain access to Top Secret information?
STOCK
Newsreader:
The army has detained a US solider in connection with the leak of this classified video.
STOCK
Newsreader:
The prime suspect is 22-year-old army Private First Class Bradley Manning, for allegedly leaking this classified gun camera video of an Apache helicopter attacking...
Renata Avila's account differs in a number of ways from Domscheit-Berg's. In the latter's book about his time at WikiLeaks, he writes:
We learned of Manning's arrest from the news. I was sitting at my computer when the first reports came through on online media. It was the worst moment in the history of WikiLeaks.
In our interview with Domscheit-Berg and in subsequent correspondence, he showed great sympathy for Chelsea Manning and overwhelming interest in her well-being.

However, regardless of what the truth of his personal feelings were, the comment from WikiLeaks is more about an attack on character than it is an attempt to judge the truth of the statement. Note that they are not attempting to refute his claims that the situation was emotionally difficult and that not all details were immediately clear. This is because Domscheit-Berg is describing the situation as it actually was.
Note: Human rights lawyer, Renata Avila Pinto, who knows Mr Domscheit-Berg, has stated that when she contacted him to alert him about the arrest of Mr Manning, which had been made public, Mr Domscheit-Berg, despite being made aware of the gravity of the situation, said he was busy on holiday and didn't want to deal with the matter.

Source:
Click here.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
Really in the first few days after we heard of this problem with Private Manning, I mean it felt like the worst possible scenario. At that time not really understanding what it means for us and what the hell was actually going on?
STOCK
Journalist:
Private First Class Bradley Manning, he found a former computer hacker in Sacramento, California and that former computer hacker was growing increasingly alarmed, eventually turning him in.
This is an exact repetition of a comment that WikiLeaks already posted. They do this several times as a way of making it look like there are more "problems" with the film than they can in fact engineer.
Note: In fact, as the alleged chat logs make clear, Manning had already lost his security clearance, his access, and was being discharged from the US Army in relation to another issue. Despite this and Lamo's promises of confidentiality, Lamo not only became an informer, but immediately pushed the story out through WIRED magazine, issued nine press releases, gave dozens of interviews, and campaigned for Assange's extradition.

Court records show that Lamo actively attempted to inform on other people well after the Manning arrest, including Jason Katz, a physicist at Brookhaven National Laboratory, who he alleged helped WikiLeaks decode the encryption on a US Airforce massacre video. Katz was fired and swept up into the ongoing FBI investigation against WikiLeaks as a result of his alleged contribution to uncovering a war crime. People close to him were forced to testify against him at the WikiLeaks grand jury. None of this is covered by Gibney.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Adrian Lamo:
He needed a friend and I wish that I could have been a better friend. There was a responsibility to the needs of the many rather than to the needs of Bradley Manning.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Lamo met with federal agents and gave them a copy of his chats with Bradley Manning. He also gave a copy to Kevin Poulsen, a friend and former convicted hacker who was now the editor at Wired.com.
Kevin Poulsen:
I had just done a story about Adrian being institutionalised. While he was institutionalised they had adjusted his medications. I almost had kind of a suspicion that maybe these medications weren't agreeing with him and this was kind of A Beautiful Mind situation, that he was imagining all this.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Lamo gave Poulsen the ok to publish the story and days later Wired.com broke the news of Manning’s arrest.
Timothy Webster:
Nobody wanted Adrian to go to the media but apparently it was already done and, well, he ended up approaching a lot of media after that. It just sort of exploded.
Footage of Adrian Lamo TV interview.
STOCK
Interviewer:
Did it make you feel patriotic when you turned Manning in?
Adrian Lamo:
It made me very sad that I could not have interdicted this leak. I believed that his actions were endangering lives
Timothy Webster:
Adrian lives his life as though he's writing it like a novel. And every novelist wants to rewrite.
STOCK
Adrian Lamo:
It's my job to play this role that I'm cast in to the very best of my ability, the same as any other actor. You can't possibly be yourself in the public eye. All the little things that make us human don't stand up under the scrutiny of the camera. I'd like to also point out that I think that this marks the end of WikiLeaks’ ability to say that they have never had a source be outed.
Footage of Julian Assange interview.
STOCK
Interviewer:
So, what's going to happen to him? Is Manning going to be accused and made as an example?
Julian Assange:
So, he has been charged with espionage, the allegation being that he has transferred at least 50 classified cables to another party, and the other party is unknown.
Mark Davis:
After Bradley Manning was arrested, attention shifted very much to Julian. It was no longer a secret. The pressure during this period was intense. Julian won’t say where he got that material but he had the material – there was no question about that.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
We try extremely hard to never know who our sources are. All our encryption technology is designed to prevent us knowing who our sources are.
This first part is another repetition of something WikiLeaks already posted, a practice we note above.

As WikiLeaks knows but chooses to ignore, the filmmakers are well aware of WikiLeaks's unique technical infrastructure. The infrastructure isn't just for anonymizing submissions. Often ignored but perhaps more important is their practice of placing servers in different countries and making it easy for supporters to mirror their website. By doing so, they became not only a place for leaks, but a bold publisher of last resort. As we say earlier in the film:
The website boasted an electronic drop box and could receive secrets sent by people who didn't want to reveal who they were. Once WikiLeaks had the secrets it would publish them across servers, domain names and networks so numerous that the information could never be taken down.
WikiLeaks ignores this in order to slander the film. These rhetorical questions on the part of the narrator are clearly meant to reflect the public's lack of information at the moment in summer 2010 covered by this scene in the film.
Note: Gibney's rhetorical questions reveal his malicious agenda and poor research. The answers are easy to find: The full phrase is "Splendide Mendax" and it was never used by Assange in this manner. The phrase is a literary joke. In Latin it means "Nobly untrue", but as a pseudonym it is a a witicism about how pseudonyms, which are "untrue", protect the author's safety.

Source: Click here.
WikiLeaks' system uses the Tor onion router across multiple servers in multiple jurisdictions, stripping out submission metadata at each Tor node, meaning anonymisation occurs early in the process and long before information reaches WikiLeaks web servers. WikiLeaks does not keep logs, hence logs cannot be seized.
Source: Click here.
(02:56:46 PM) bradass87: he knows very little about me
(02:56:54 PM) bradass87: he takes source protection uber-seriously
(02:57:01 PM) bradass87: “lie to me” he says
(02:57:06 PM) info@adrianlamo.com: Really. Interesting.
(02:57:34 PM) bradass87: he wont work with you if you reveal too much about yourself.
Source: Click here.
"Our technology does not permit us to understand whether someone is one of our sources or not, because the best way to keep a secret is to never have it." Julian Assange.
Source: WikiSecrets, PBS Frontline documentary.
Full transcript: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Was it really possible that Julian didn't know that Bradley Manning was his source? Or was saying so the old Mendax tactic: telling a lie for a noble cause?
News footage.
Stephen Grey:
Private First Class Bradley Manning is now said to have confessed to passing more than 260,000 documents to WikiLeaks. If he's the leaker that implies there's much more to be released. Stephen Grey, for Channel 4 News.
Footage of Julian Assange.
WikiLeaks's questions are an attempt to distract from the main issue.

The first question is extraordinarily speculative and ignores the particular details of Manning's case. The second is worse, as the details of Manning's case belie the concern completely: Manning's published confession associated her to particular materials that Assange had in his possession. Publishing these materials was the public confirmation that Manning had indeed sent them. Perhaps this publication was the right thing to do, but to pretend that not publishing them would be the act of substantiation is puzzling. It is logically, even metaphysically, confused.

The third question is indeed serious—but the film in fact raises the same complication mere moments later, by letting Assange himself bring it up. Assange did not allow us to interview him, but we attempted to fairly and accurately represent his positions throughout the film by excerpting from the more than one hundred interviews and talks of his that we watched. His statement in the film in regard to this matter:
We have a situation where there's a young man, Bradley Manning, who is alleged to be a source for the Collateral Murder video. We do not know whether Mr. Manning is our source or not, but what we do know is that we promised the source that we would publish everything that they gave to us.
The final question is an apt point, but it does have to be taken in the context that WikiLeaks published the materials long before it was clear what other evidence the U.S. government had against Manning. It wasn't clear at the time whether Manning might be freed if the materials were held back. WikiLeaks chose to publish.
Note:The question instead is fourfold:
  • Would halting publication set a precedent that would lead to the "hostage taking" of other people alleged to be WikiLeaks sources?
  • Would halting publication be interpreted as substantiating allegations that Manning was a source?
  • Would halting publication be a betrayal of WikiLeaks' promises to publish?
  • Would halting publication also halt political support for Manning?
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian knew how much more there was. But now that Manning was arrested the question became would WikiLeaks put Manning in greater jeopardy by continuing to release his materials?
This is yet another repetition of a comment that WikiLeaks has already posted, meant to give the impression that WikiLeaks has more quarrels with the film than it actually does. Their previous posting of this comment, along with our response, is here. We note previous repetitions of other material here and here.
Note: Human rights lawyer, Renata Avila Pinto, who knows Mr Domscheit-Berg, has stated that when she contacted him to alert him about the arrest of Mr Manning, which had been made public, Mr Domscheit-Berg, despite being made aware of the gravity of the situation, said he was busy on holiday and didn't want to deal with the matter. Julian Assange later suspended him.

Source:
Click here.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
It's certainly a very problematic situation. This is about as serious as it can get.
Footage of Julian Assange.
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Julian Assange:
We have a situation where there's a young man, Bradley Manning, who is alleged to be a source for the Collateral Murder video. We do not know whether Mr Manning is our source or not, but what we do know is that we promised the source that we would publish everything that they gave to us.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Even though his potential source had been arrested, Assange was undeterred from WikiLeaks’ mission. And the hundreds of thousands of leaked US government secrets he possessed were burning a hole in his pocket. Julian travelled around Europe plotting his next move. In Brussels, he was tracked down by investigative journalist Nick Davies.
Nick Davies:
My pitch to Julian was instead of posting the secret material on the WikiLeaks website, he shared it with an alliance of the Guardian and other media groups including the New York Times who (a) have the impact of reaching millions of people instantly and also have natural political connections in their own jurisdictions. So we were trying to give him a kind of political immunity so that he could do this - clearly provocative and somewhat dangerous thing - in relative safety and with an assurance of success.
WikiLeaks's note is misleading. It suggests that they have access to Davies's interview and can thus clarify what he actually meant. Thus, they add a link to a "Full interview transcript." What they don't note is that this is an interview with Assange, not Davies. They often rely on the likelihood that the reader will not click through in order to mislead.

While WikiLeaks did not have access to our full interview with Davies, they do ignore his statement immediately preceding this one, in which he says:
My pitch to Julian was instead of posting the secret material on the WikiLeaks website, he shared it with an alliance of the Guardian and other media groups including the New York Times
Clearly, Assange and Davies have different accounts of what occurred. But this doesn't mean that Davies's account should be reinterpreted to align it with Assange's.
Note: It was not Davies’ suggestion that WikiLeaks partner with other media: WikiLeaks had worked with journalists at the New York Times and at the Guardian many times previously. WikiLeaks first Guardian front page, on Kenyan corruption, was as early as 2007. WikiLeaks had already brought in Der Spiegel and the New York Times and the Guardian were next. That is why Assange agreed to meet with Nick Davies.

Full interview transcript: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Recognising that WikiLeaks could benefit from a louder megaphone, Julian agreed to Nick’s proposal.
Nick Davies:
So, how am I going to get the documents back to London? There was a little bit of a risk that if the authorities were monitoring his communications, as they might well have been, they would be aware of my involvement with him, they would arrest me as I came back into the United Kingdom and take the material if I had it on a laptop. We thought about a memory stick - maybe they might not spot that. He came up with a much better solution. He said that he would create a website. In order to access the website, I would need a password. So he took a paper napkin that was on the table in the café where we were talking in Brussels and he hooked together several of the words in the commercial logo and wrote: No capital letters. I stuffed it in my pocket. In the event that I was arrested people would assume that it was something I was going to blow my nose on - and so it was I travelled back to the United Kingdom and, as it happened, nobody stopped me so it was all cool.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian would also team up with the London-based Bureau for Investigative Journalism. In a pre-arranged drop point in central London, Julian met Iain Overton.
Iain Overton:
We turned up and Julian was there wearing a bullet proof vest and we had a Middle Eastern meal, and he revealed that he had the largest-ever military leak of documents in the history of leaks.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In the midst of this spy story was thrust Iain’s young colleague – a computer whiz named James Ball.
James Ball:
It was about one o’clock in the morning. I took delivery of a USB stick of 390,000 secret US military records. I made to leave and Julian asked me where I was going and I said, well, I was going to go home. So he paused and goes: No, don’t do that – I don’t want your address linked to this address. Can you find somewhere else to go, at least for 4 or 5 hours? I don’t really think I can go and hit a club – I’d really hate having to try and explain losing 400,000 secret documents because I got a bit drunk.
Gavin MacFadyen:
Nobody had ever done this before. How do you have teams of intelligent people to go through this stuff? Nobody in my experience as a journalist had ever been confronted with a tenth of the mass of material he was.
Iain Overton:
We were talking, you know, half a million lines of data. If, in the old days, you had to take half a million lines of data out, you’d have had 16 wheelbarrows out of the front door of the Pentagon.
Nick Davies:
This was the biggest leak of secret material in the history of this particular planet.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian decided that the first release of material would be the Afghan War Logs, but he had to understand them first. In London, the Guardian set up a secret operation with key military reporters from the New York Times and the German magazine Der Spiegel, veteran journalists who could penetrate the arcane language of the military.
Footage of Julian Assange with reporters in the Guardian's offices.
Nick Davies:
During the 4 or 5 weeks when the reporters were working on the Afghan war logs, all of us became concerned that there was material in there which, if published, could get people hurt on the ground in Afghanistan.
Footage of Julian Assange speaking about the Afghan War Logs data.
This is a puzzling statement by WikiLeaks.

Assange claims that he did not say what Davies attributes to him. But, as evidence, WikiLeaks refers to a statement by a different Guardian journalist, David Leigh. The links they include refer to Leigh, not Davies. The link they provide to the statement by Der Spiegel journalist John Goetz is also in reference to Leigh. The fact is that Assange is contradicting Davies's claim by referring to a statement made by someone other than Davies at a dinner that Davies never attended.

Meanwhile, he ignores what the film and Davies actually say. Note that immediately after this in the transcript, our director asked Davies for confirmation that this astonishing quotation was accurate:
Alex Gibney: Are you sure about that? That’s definitely what he said?

Nick Davies: I have absolutely no doubt about it at all. This was just me and him talking through the detail of how we handled this.
[Emphasis added.]
As Davies makes clear, he is talking about having heard this on an entirely different occasion. WikiLeaks ignores this. They talk about a different event so that they can link to a witness statement. This is meant to distract the reader of the transcript from what is actually in the film.
Note: Assange has always maintained he never said this and made a formal complaint to the Leveson Inquiry about the veracity of Davies’ evidence. Assange is alleged to have made this remark while discussing the redaction of the Afghan War Diaries with journalists from Der Spiegel and the Guardian during a dinner in London in July 2010. Nick Davies was not present at that dinner. A journalist at that dinner, John Goetz provided a signed witness statement affirming that the remark was not made.

Source:
Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.

WikiLeaks 'ambassador' Joseph Farrell emailed the OfCom complaint containing the Goetz witness statement to Gibney, his producer and his executive producer on 14 June 2012.
Nick Davies:
This particularly related to ordinary Afghan civilians who in one operation or incident or another had given information to coalition forces and that was recorded in there in such a way that those civilians were identifiable. I raised this with Julian and he said if an Afghan civilian helps coalition forces he deserves to die. He went on to explain that they have the status of a collaborator or informant. Now...
Alex Gibney:
Are you sure about that? That’s definitely what he said?
Nick Davies:
I have absolutely no doubt about it at all. This was just me and him talking through the detail of how we handled this. And this problem - potential problem - had already come up. (a) It's a moral problem. We are not here to publish material that gets people killed; (b) If you publish information that really does get people hurt, or could conceivably get people hurt, you lose your political immunity – you're terribly vulnerable to the most obvious propaganda attack, which is waiting for us in the wings, that you are helping the 'bad guys'. Julian is a computer hacker – he comes from that ideology that all information is good and everything should be published.
Journalist:
I asked Julian if he would publish information sent to his website that could lead to the deaths of innocents, such as how to release anthrax into the Thames water supply.
Audio of Julian Assange giving a radio interview.
Actually, rather than provide "no context," we provide the same context that the Peabody-award winning show "On the Media" originally provided:
"On the Media" Host: I asked Julian if he would publish information sent to his website that could lead to the deaths of innocents, such as how to release anthrax into the Thames water supply.

Julian Assange: Yes. Even if there is a possibility it would lead to loss of life.
A June 7, 2010 article in the New Yorker reported Assange's views on redactions as such:
Recently, he posted military documents that included the Social Security numbers of soldiers, and in the Bunker I asked him if WikiLeaks’ mission would have been compromised if he had redacted these small bits. He said that some leaks risked harming innocent people—“collateral damage, if you will”—but that he could not weigh the importance of every detail in every document.
There are many arguments regarding Assange's views on redactions. What is clear from the extremely different handling of the Afghan War Logs, published in July 2010, and the Iraq War Logs, published in October 2010, is that Assange's views on redactions changed radically over the year. This is likely because he realized that the failure to take redactions more seriously than he did for the Afghan War Logs is a mistake, for both moral and political reasons.
Note: Gibney edits in a single line of audio, with no context, from an unrelated discussion to give a misleading impression of Julian Assange's views on the redactions necessary for the Afghan War Logs publication. Instead of resorting to deceptive editing such as this, Gibney could have talked to Der Spiegel, one of WikiLeaks other media partners on the Afghan release, who raised the issue with Assange in this interview dated July 26, 2010:
Assange: The Kabul files contain no information related to current troop movements. The source went through their own harm-minimization process and instructed us to conduct our usual review to make sure there was not a significant chance of innocents being negatively affected. We understand the importance of protecting confidential sources, and we understand why it is important to protect certain US and ISAF sources.
Source: Click here.

For a good overview of WikiLeaks' policy on redactions, see here.
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Julian Assange:
Yes, even if there is a possibility that release may lead to loss of life.
Iain Overton:
This is a man whose primary way of interacting with the world is a digital one. It is to some degree unsullied by the limitations of human nature.
Nick Davies:
He does sometimes reduce human activity to something formulaic – then he doesn’t see the human heart beating in there, he just reduces it to that very, very simple formula: they speak to an occupying force, they must be bad, the informant deserves to die.
The citation WikiLeaks provides is not to an objective source, but in fact to Assange's lengthy criticism of a different documentary, in which he did appear. He may as well have just linked back to this same document. The intended effect is to mislead the reader by making them believe that WikiLeaks is pointing to documentation backing up their claim.

Assange's account of redaction differs strongly from the recollection of the journalists we spoke to.
Note: The working method agreed at the start of the five-week period during which WikiLeaks' media partners would assess the Afghan War Logs material ahead of publication was that the media partner journalists would provide oversight by flagging up to WikiLeaks any regions or keywords requiring redaction in the individual records as they went through them. This resulted in 1 in 5 documents being witheld from initial publication: some 15,000 documents in total.

Source:
Click here and go to p. 7.

Narration by Alex Gibney:
The coalition of journalists weren't used to working with a transparency radical like Assange. And Assange was still learning the ethics of journalism. They could only agree on one thing: they were going to release the documents. In London, a deadline was set for all the partners to publish at the same time. Julian finally agreed to redactions and blacking out of names. He told his partners he had a special process which would eliminate the identity of sources from the documents. But with less than a week before publication, Assange had neglected to tell Domscheit-Berg in Berlin.
Note that at no point in the film do we say that anyone came to harm because of WikiLeaks's disclosure. To the contrary, we point out, including in a portion that WikiLeaks omitted, that the U.S. government did not believe the leaks caused harm.

But that's not to say that WikiLeaks's redactions processes were ideal, which is why we include this section in the film. Assange took unnecessary risks, and made a political mistake, with the Afghan War Logs redaction process. By failing to redact all of the Afghan War Logs, Assange did, in fact, expose sources to danger. The fact that they were not killed does not diminish the possible danger or the damage done to the transparency agenda by appearing to be so reckless.

On the other hand, Assange clearly learned from the mistake, given his radically different manner of redacting the Iraq War Logs. We note these improvements on the part of WikiLeaks later in the film.
No person came to harm and NATO forces in Afghanistan admitted to CNN that there wasn't a single person in the released documents in need of protection.

Source:
Click here.

Domscheit-Berg may not have been physically present, but he was in fact still involved with the preparation of most of WikiLeaks's 2010 releases until his departure in September 2010. In this capacity, he was party to Assange's request that the WikiLeaks team scramble to work on redactions in the days before release. Indeed, in his book on WikiLeaks, Domscheit-Berg publishes chats, in verbatim, which he received from Assange while working on the Afghan War Logs. Less than four days before the release, Assange wrote Domscheit-Berg and the team working on the publication a fourteen point to-do list. Slipped in among the items is the gigantic—indeed, by that point impossible—task of redaction:

J: 1. the urls need to be standardized tomorrow. the naming has been standardized. “kabul war dairies” and “baghdad war dairies”

J: 2. afg needs to be checked for innocent informer identification. these are mostly in the threat reports. its quite a bit of work to go through them

J: 3. high level overview and press release need to be done

J: 3.5 our own internal coms must be standardized. sat pagers deployed if available and silc/irc fallbacks

J: 4. distribution infrastructure needs to be tested again

J: 5. versions of the afg database that we supply need to have the classification field stripped out

...

[Emphasis added]

Note that the first nine items on the fourteen-point list, including these five listed above, were tasks that Assange said "MUST be done or we fail." Assange expected the small WikiLeaks team to review at least 15,000 documents, and potentially 91,000 documents, in less than four days.

The fact is that this annotation from WikiLeaks is simply part of their strategy of attacking the credibility of their critics in order to ignore their criticism.



On a final note, it makes sense here to note, since it does come up again below, that WikiLeaks frequently inflates the size of their organization.

One funny aspect of this practice is Assange's fondness for the bureaucratic language that large organizations sometimes employ. His note here that "WikiLeaks issued a policy directive" is a good example of that. When asked about the size of the organization, WikiLeaks supporter Gavin MacFadyen described it as "a corner gas station." Calling an email to the staff of a corner gas station a "policy directive" reveals either a desire to hide the size of the organization or a strange love for bureaucratese.
Note: Daniel Domscheit-Berg was not directly involved in any of WikiLeaks' 2010 releases (with the exception of a minor administrative role in booking the venue for the Collateral Murder press conference). These facts have been widely reported, yet Alex Gibney uses Domscheit-Berg as a primary source for this film. Domscheit-Berg has no way of knowing the state of preparedness of WikiLeaks prior to the Afghan War Logs release date, and cannot be considered an authoritative source on the matter.
Due to his increasingly erratic behaviour, in late February 2010 WikiLeaks issued a policy directive that Domscheit-Berg not be permitted contact with source material.
Source: Click here.
More: Click here.
After February 2010 Domscheit-Berg's input within WikiLeaks was restricted to the maintenance of some WikiLeaks back-ups within Germany, and as German spokesperson. His role as spokesperson within Germany was removed after he gave a number of interviews following the 5 April 2010 release of Collateral Murder in which he misdescribed himself to the press.
Source: Click here and go to p. 7.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
So there we were, 4 days before releasing 90,000 documents, and no redactions made.
Footage of Julian Assange discussing the Afghan War Logs release.
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Julian Assange:
It is effectively impossible for us to notify some of these Afghanis and their leaders about this material. It looks like we will have to do a redaction of some of it.
Journalist:
Is that new to you? I mean, you're effectively doing a bit of censorship yourself.
Julian Assange:
Yeah, that would be new for us but remember...
The footage abruptly cuts off.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Time was running out. Just before the release, Assange focused on a section of 15,000 documents that contained the most names. In desperation, he turned to an unlikely source for help.
News footage clips.
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Newsreader:
It was reported that WikiLeaks has asked the Department of Defense for help in reviewing approximately 15,000 classified documents that WikiLeaks obtained in an unauthorized and inappropriate manner.
Newsreader:
Before WikiLeaks releases those classified documents to the public...
WikiLeaks engaged with the Pentagon over redactions a mere 24 hours before publishing tens of thousands of documents. They had been working on these documents for months. It is in fact a perfect example of the extremely disordered way that they approached redactions for the Afghan War Logs. As we point out later, their redaction processes significantly improved for later releases. They themselves were not satisfied with how they had done things.
Note: There was no fixed schedule for release of the held-back 15,000 documents for which WikiLeaks sought Pentagon help with redaction. This was confirmed on August 8, 2010 by Domscheit-Berg himself:
"[Daniel Schmitt] rejected allegations that the group’s publication of leaked US government documents was a threat to America’s national security or put lives at risk. “For this reason, we conveyed a request to the White House prior to the publication, asking that the International Security Assistance Force provide us with reviewers,” Schmitt said. “That request remains open. However, the Pentagon has stated that it is not interested in ‘harm minimization’ and has not contacted us, directly, or indirectly to discuss this offer.”
Source: Click here.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
Julian urged the New York Times to send a letter to the Pentagon, asking if they want to help with redactions and they refused. And that was 24 hours before the release, you know.
Mark Davis:
This notion that he didn’t care about what was in that material is not true. I mean, he was actually quite tortured by this material and with very few resources - by himself, day and night - he was consumed with working out what to release and what not to release.
James Ball:
WikiLeaks is a tiny organization, working on this huge scale; it's going to make some mistakes.
Footage of Julian Assange talking about how to spell Der Spiegel on a press release
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Julian Assange:
Aw, fuck that end of the press release then.
Mark Davis:
He was without any support structure, and he was about to do a press conference so, you know, I'd say to him: Julian, you need someone there. I mean, someone's got to write a press release, or at least to answer the phone.
Clip of Julian Assange.
Mark Davis:
So it was just in the couple of days before that launch that a couple of volunteer students came in.
Footage of Julian Assange talking to WikiLeaks staff.
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Julian Assange:
Away you go now, but I'll give you something to think about, which is we've got this press conference on tomorrow - we're going to be totally inundated, completely totally inundated.
STOCK
Journalist:
Let's talk about WikiLeaks as an organisation. Is this Apple or IBM, or is this...?
Gavin MacFadyen:
[laughing] Hah! It's a corner gas station with some extremely bright attendants.
WikiLeaks's quotation is highly misleading, as they and Assange have made an assiduous effort over the years to inflate the size of the organization when it is helpful for them. That's how the New Yorker, after spending a significant amount of time with Assange, could be convinced that Wikileaks had:
hundreds of volunteers from around the world [who] help maintain the Web site's complicated infrastructure
(link)
It's why Assange's attorney told a crowd of reporters after Assange's arrest that:
WikiLeaks is many thousands of journalists reporting news around the world.
(link)
An odder example of WikiLeaks's sleight of hand in regard to its size is Assange's penchant for bureaucratese, which seems intended to give the impression that the organization has a large membership to manage.

Davis is quite correct in saying that Assange often tries to make the organization seem bigger than it is, though Assange will also admit that it is only a few full-time members when it's helpful for making a different point. This eagerness to have it both ways comes out often in WikiLeaks's public statements.
Note: False. Later on the same day Davis is referring to, July 25, 2010, at the press conference for the Afghan War Logs which was streaming live all over the world, Assange told a room full of journalists that WikiLeaks is a "small organization."
It's actually a very hard engineering task to supply 2-5% of the entire world internet connected population at a single moment with material. And so we are a small organization trying to understand how to do that and do that in a secure way. As a result we have built up during that period an enormous backlog of whistleblower disclosures.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Mark Davis:
It is true that he tried to create an impression that it was this very large organization. It was Julian Assange, his $300 laptop, ten SIM cards and a very, you know, cheap jacket that he'd put on to get through the interview.
Alarm clock rings.
Assange did indeed say that he "[hadn't] been to sleep." Davis clearly judged that he had. They were both present, so this is a simple difference in recollection. It is unclear whether WikiLeaks objects to the notion that waking up late was Assange's "normal thing."

It should be noted that this is also a misunderstanding of how documentaries are made. Often different recollections are included so that the audience can decide for itself what happened. Assange, apparently, would prefer that his views be regarded as objective truths.
Note: Poor quality fact-checking. Davies is ad-libbing for the camera, but the footage and dialogue in the next clip makes it clear that, in fact, the situation is such that Assange has worked through the night and still hasn't found time to sleep.
Mark Davis:
He woke up late, of course. Knocking on the door, "Julian, come on man." He gets up, just his normal thing, you know.
Footage of Mark Davis filming Assange he prepares to leave for the Afghan War Logs press conference.
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Julian Assange:
What's the time? What's the time?
Mark Davis:
It's twenty-five to.
Julian Assange:
I need to prepare a little list of things.
Mark Davis:
Alright, I'll be two minutes. How you feeling?
Julian Assange:
Tired. Haven't been to sleep, but good, good. 14 pages in the Guardian this morning. "Massive leak of secret files exposes true Afghan war." We tell our sources maximum political impact and I think we got pretty close.
Mark Davis:
There's ten trucks out there, ten media trucks.
Julian Assange:
Yeah. Yep. There'll be a good outcome.
Mark Davis:
He walked out that door as a sort of ageing student hobo and by the time, you know, he'd made this 50 yard walk, he was a rockstar – he was one of the most famous guys on the planet.
Footage of Julian Assange at press conference for Afghan War Logs.
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Julian Assange:
Most of you have read some of the morning papers. So, this is the Guardian from this morning: 14 pages about this topic. It's clear that it will shape an understanding of what the past 6 years of war has been like, and that the course of the war needs to change.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The war logs revealed a conflict that was very different from what citizens had been told. Civilian casualties were much higher than reported. America’s supposed ally, Pakistan, was playing a double game: taking military aid from the US even while working with the Taliban, to plan attacks in Afghanistan. The war logs also revealed the existence of a secret American assassination squad with a terrible record of wounding and killing women and children.
Bill Leonard:
There is nothing that will have greater consequences for our nation than the unleashing of the brutality of war. To have those types of decisions, those types of deliberations, done in secrecy is a tremendous disservice to the American people – because these are things being done in their name – so, whether you agree with them or not, to have a free back-and-forth airing of these is essential.
Footage of Julian Assange at press conference.
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Julian Assange:
All the material is over 7 months old, so it's got no current operational consequence.
Journalist:
Now, in what circumstances wouldn't you publish information, or are there any circumstances in which you wouldn't publish material?
Julian Assange:
We have a harm minimization process. Our goal is just reform, our method is transparency, but we do not put the method before the goal.
WikiLeaks's reference to the "harm minimization procedures" it had at the time is misleading. In truth, when Assange was asked about harm minimization over the years, he tended to dismiss the idea. Indeed, we include this exchange just a few minutes earlier in the film:

Assange: It is effectively impossible for us to notify some of these Afghanis and their leaders about this material. It looks like we will have to do a redaction of some of it.

Interviewer: Is that new to you? I mean, you're effectively doing a bit of censorship yourself.

Assange: Yeah, that would be new for us...

As a concept, "harm minimization" was not something that WikiLeaks talked about often before this period. Indeed, a cursory look reveals that there were no mentions on the entire Web of WikiLeaks's "harm minimization program" over the nearly four years from WikiLeaks's founding to the month the Afghan War Logs were published. Even the WikiLeaks website made no mention of the phrase. In contrast, in the week after the Afghan War Logs released, there are dozens of hits.

It's clear that WikiLeaks rushed to minimize harm from the redactions in the days leading up to the release. They made an effort in those days to do what they could, most notably withholding 15,000 documents from publication which their partners had identified. To call the haphazard effort "a program" is a vast exaggeration however. Nick Davies's "amazement" reflects this fact.


On a final note, WikiLeaks poor redaction of the Afghan War Logs was subsequently condemned by:
Note: Nick Davies is shown to be lying. He was alreadycompletely aware of the harm minimization procedures implemented by WikiLeaks. An article by Nick Davies in which he himself explained the procedures had been published on the front page of The Guardian, prior to Assange's announcement.

The most famous photograph from the July 25 press conference at which Assange made this announcement shows him holding a copy of the Guardian newspaper from that morning. Embedded Image

The front page headline in the photograph is "Massive leak of secret files exposes true Afghan war". This is an article by Nick Davies and David Leigh.

From the article:
A small amount of information has been withheld from publication because it might endanger local informants or give away genuine military secrets. WikiLeaks, whose founder, Julian Assange, obtained the material in circumstances he will not discuss, said it would redact harmful material before posting the bulk of the data on its "uncensorable" servers.
Nick Davies' "amazement" at Assange's statement is not credible in light of the fact that had already reported the content of that statement in a front page story in an international newspaper.

Source: Click here.

Nick Davies:
To my amazement, Julian announced to the world WikiLeaks always conducts a harm minimization process. Julian had no harm minimization process in place at all.
This is explained sufficiently above. It should be noted though that Assange's evidence that there was a "working method agreed at the start of the five-week period" is just a link to his own lengthy response to another documentary he disagreed with, rather than the objective source. We already criticized this deceptive practice above.

What didn't mention there is that the lengthy complaint about the other documentary was rejected by Ofcom, the UK's regulatory body for broadcasting and telecommunications.
As is also clear, the claim that "Julian had no harm minimization process in place at all" is also false. The working method agreed at the start of the five-week period during which WikiLeaks' media partners would assess the Afghan War Logs material ahead of publication was that the media partner journalists would provide oversight by flagging up to WikiLeaks any regions or keywords requiring redaction in the individual records as they went through them. This resulted in 1 in 5 documents being witheld from initial publication: some 15,000 documents in total. No person came to harm and NATO forces in Afghanistan admitted to CNN that there wasn't a single person in the released documents in need of protection.

Source:
Click here and go to p. 7.

Alex Gibney:
So, on the WikiLeaks side, were the redactions made?
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
No. There were 15,000 documents in the end were held back, but 75,000 documents were published and they contained about 100 names.
"WikiLeaks gave the world 75,000 of these documents..."

This is an infelicitous phrase. It's pointed out late in the film that there's a mistaken tendency in some quarters to treat WikiLeaks with the moral status of a whistleblower rather than a publisher—a tendency WikiLeaks promotes with statements such as this.

Instead, if the phrase is to be used, it would seem more apt to say that Manning "gave the world" these documents. Consider the analogies:
  • Did the Guardian or Edward Snowden "give the NSA/GCHQ leaks to the world"?
  • Did the New York Times or Daniel Ellsberg "give the Pentagon Papers to the world"?
Regardless, WikiLeaks purposefully oversimplifies our position, acting as if we are saying that these were only two ways of publishing the documents. In truth, a compromise between the Times' and WikiLeaks's approaches would have been preferable—something closer to how WikiLeaks chose to handle the State Department cables.
Note: The newspapers published just a few hundred documents. WikiLeaks gave the world 75,000 of these documents, revealing many suspected war crimes in the process. NATO in Kabul had confirmed there had not been a single case of Afghans needing protection because of the leak. The New York Times censored a number of stories that came out of it, such as details of Obama's assassination programme killing children. Gibney tries to make this appalling abuse and failure to document history sound as if it is in the New York Times' favour.

Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The newspapers published articles accompanied by only a few hundred redacted documents. But even after the hold-backs, and despite Julian’s promises, WikiLeaks published 75,000 documents on its website, without redactions.
US news footage of Defense Secretary Robert Gates.
The idea that this is largely official hyperbole is supported by our presentation of the clip in our film. This is one of many instances in which WikiLeaks is acting as if there is disagreement with us when there is not. As with most of these instances, WikiLeaks depends upon people just reading the transcript rather than experiencing the presentation of the clip in the film. Any viewer can see that WikiLeaks is manufacturing disagreement here where there is none.
Note:This is officially hyperbole. The statement from then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates is from a July 2010 press conference. Just two weeks later, in an August 16 private memo to Senator Carl Levin of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Gates said:
[T]he review to date has not revealed any sensitive intelligence sources and methods compromised by this disclosure.
Source: Click here.

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Robert Gates:
The battlefield consequences of the release of these documents are potentially severe and dangerous for our troops, for our allies and Afghan partners.
It's a good point. Which is why we in fact refer to this same assessment later in the film, by prominently displaying a Guardian headline saying:
WikiLeaks has caused little lasting damage, says US state department
If it seems strange that WikiLeaks would neglect to mention that, the reader should note that WikiLeaks omitted the headline entirely from this version of the transcript.
An internal State Department assessment conducted in late 2010 found that WikiLeaks' releases were "embarrassing not damaging".

Source: Click here.



This is not contrary to our presentation of the material in the film. WikiLeaks quotes it here as if we support Gates's statement; anyone who watches the film can see that we present it within the context of the U.S. government's spin mere moments later.
In a November 2010 press conference, Robert Gates made the following statement:
Let me just offer some perspective as somebody who’s been at this a long time. Every other government in the world knows the United States government leaks like a sieve, and it has for a long time...

Now, I’ve heard the impact of these releases on our foreign policy described as a meltdown, as a game-changer, and so on. I think those descriptions are fairly significantly overwrought...

Is this embarrassing? Yes. Is it awkward? Yes. Consequences for US foreign policy? I think fairly modest.
Source: Click here.


The U.S. government has said that they could not find anyone who was hurt by the release of the documents. But the U.S. government is far from omniscient; it's of course possible someone was harmed, even if the likelihood is very small. Of course, WikiLeaks shows a regular willingness to take the U.S. government's claims at face value whenever the U.S. government happens to agree with WikiLeaks.

Regardless, it does seem fair to say that the U.S. government's investigation on the matter confirmed that the publication of the documents did not cause many people, if any, to be harmed, and that the fear-mongering statements by the U.S. government in relation to the leak were overblown. If there were any people hurt by the leaks, it would have been a very small number indeed—something that would pale in comparison to the daily conflict between the various armed factions in Afghanistan.

But this annotation by WikiLeaks is not about any of that. It's instead part of their strategy to reduce the credibility of our interviewees without addressing their claims. Davies is putting aside the question of harm to focus on the political mistake that Assange verifiably made, a mistake which allowed the U.S. government to take the air out of the Afghan War Logs publication. WikiLeaks avoids this, the real claim, because it is fact.
Note: At a briefing to Congress in late 2010 State Department officials admitted they lied about the actual impact of WikiLeaks to bolster the US efforts to bring a legal case against them. As one of the journalists who worked on the release, Nick Davies' claim to not know that the US government has officially confirmed that no individuals in Afghanistan came to any harm as a result of the Afghan War Logs is not credible.

Source:
Click here.
Nick Davies:
I do not know whether anyone in Afghanistan did get hurt - the fact that the material was there and identifiable as potentially dangerous did the political damage. When the material was first published, the world was indeed talking about civilian casualties in Afghanistan and about the existence of a squad that was going out and killing Taliban, but the White House managed the news and the story became: WikiLeaks has got blood on their hands.
Montage of US government officials giving media interviews.
Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen
As with many of WikiLeaks's comments, this comes off more like film criticism than an attempt at fact-checking. To say that the film "misses the opportunity" to talk about something is simply to say that WikiLeaks would have told the story differently.

The manner in which the film presents the hyperbolic military reaction—and the purposeful repetition of the phrase "blood on his hands"—shows that the film regards the media blitz as a "smear campaign."
Note: Gibney misses the opportunity to give a more nuanced account of the Pentagon-directed media blitz following the publication of the Afghan War Logs. Though clearly orchestrated across the entire US mainstream media, it was not uniformly successful:

The Pentagon initially claimed that it had not been contacted by WikiLeaks for help in identifying vulnerable individuals named in the documents.

Source:
Click here.

However, journalist Glenn Greenwald uncovered evidence that it had been, and had refused.

Source: Click here.

US Defense Secretary Robert Gates' private August 16 letter to the Senate Armed Forces Committee admitting that the Pentagon's review “has not revealed any sensitive intelligence sources and methods compromised” was widely reported.

Source: Click here.

CNN reported that a senior NATO official in Kabul had confirmed there had not been a single case of Afghans needing protection or to be moved because of the leak.

Source: Click here.
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Mike Mullen:
Mr Assange can say whatever he likes about the greater good he thinks he and his source are doing, but the truth is they might already have on their hands the blood of some young soldier or that of an Afghan family.
Senator Lindsey Graham
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Lindsey Graham:
The people at WikiLeaks could have blood on their hands.
Former CIA Director James Woolsey
This speaker, identified by WikiLeaks as former Director of Central Intelligence James Woolsey, is in fact Republican politician Liz Cheney.

They also quote her imprecisely. She actually says:
He does clearly have blood on his hands.
These kinds of careless errors abound in WikiLeaks's transcript, as previous examples make clear.
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James Woolsey:
He definitely has blood on his hands.
Former Governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee
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Mike Huckabee:
The blood is on their hands.
Heather Brooke:
This is where we get into the information war - that speculative blood became more important than the actual blood. We already can see all that terrible stuff – we know about that. Let's focus on your nightmares, how all these people might die because the government's secrets have been unleashed.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Afghan War Statistics:
OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM
Coalition troop deaths: 3,936
Afghan Civilian deaths: 15,500-17,400
Taliban deaths: 15,000-25,000
WikiLeaks is right to say that the New York Times distanced itself from WikiLeaks and Assange in a harsh and unfair manner. What WikiLeaks neglects to mention, yet again, is that we make a point to cover this later in the film.

Regardless, WikiLeaks is making a straw man argument at this point. The "blood on your hands" media spin by the U.S. government was made possible by WikiLeaks's poor redaction processes at the time, not by the New York Times' "corrupting of the material" or "[hostility to WikiLeaks] as an organization in order to save itself."
Note: Julian Assange:
We saw the New York Times as, yes, influential within its market, but on the other hand so corrupting of the material that we were trying to get out, and so hostile to us as an organisation in order to save itself, in order to distance itself, that we were not only betraying the impact of the material, but we were shooting ourselves as an organisation every time we work with the New York Times, because the way they try to save themselves from the lash-back by military apologists in the United States was by attacking us, and therefore increasing the perceived separation.
Source: Click here and go to p. 49.
Nick Davies:
As soon as they pick up this line about who's got blood on their hands, it's WikiLeaks being isolated and that, from a political point of view, was a clever move by the White House. They stepped all around any kind of argument with these big media organisations and isolated Julian.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
By creating a distinction between Assange and the newspapers, the government avoided a war with the mainstream media and invented a perfect enemy: the guy Bradley Manning called “a crazy, white-haired Aussie”.
Footage clips from Mark Davis' documentary "Inside WikiLeaks"
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Julian Assange:
Not what it was, but what it is.
Mark Davis:
Julian, is this taking some getting used to? You've been pretty much in the shadows as far as the media's concerned, until recently.
Julian Assange:
We've grown a bit, so it's just our time, for me to do it.
Mark Davis:
WikiLeaks needs a face?
Julian Assange:
Yeah, well, the public demands that it has a face. And actually we'd much prefer - I'd prefer - that it didn't have a face. We tried to do that for a while and people just, the demands were so great people just started inventing faces.
Montage of clips of media coverage of Julian Assange.
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Newsreader:
Some call him a hero, some see him as a threat to national security. Julian, thank you for joining us.
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Newsreader:
This afternoon I talked to the man behind the leaks".
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Newsreader:
Julian Assange.
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Newsreader:
Julian Assange.
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Interviewer:
What have the leaks achieved?
Julian Assange:
We have published more classified documents than the rest of the world press combined.
Interviewer:
So, it's journalistic?
Julian Assange:
Well, I'm fond of the phrase 'Lights on, rats out'.
Interviewer:
Do you feel that you have accomplished what you wanted to with the release of these documents?
Julian Assange:
Not yet.
Footage from Mark Davis' documentary of Julian and WikiLeaks staff discussing his media coverage.
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Julian Assange:
(laughing) Jesus Christ!
WikiLeaks Staffer:
Two of you on the front and then you have a double page spread.
WikiLeaks Staffer:
I think that's the best photo.
Julian Assange:
That's not a bad photo.
WikiLeaks Staffer:
I mean, you've got your own banner at the top there, and you've got three pages in the Times.
Julian Assange:
Well, I'm untouchable now in this country.
Mark Davis:
Untouchable?
Julian Assange:
Untouchable.
Mark Davis:
That's a bit of hubris.
Julian Assange:
Well, for a couple of days. It can wear off, but the next few days, untouchable.
Another news montage.
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Newsreader:
The founder of WikiLeaks found himself making news again today – Sweden issued a warrant for the arrest of Julian Assange
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Newsreader:
Swedish authorities are looking to question WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
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Newsreader:
Swedish authorities have issued a warrant for his arrest on suspicion of molestation and rape in two separate cases.
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Newsreader:
Just last month WikiLeaks published more than 75,000...
Nick Davies is clearly relating his experience of seeing the news on the heels of the Afghan War Logs release. It accurately reflects the feelings of many people working on the Manning leaks at the time.

Regarding his claim about Bostrom, who we cover in more detail below: In August 2010, Bostrom was indeed coordinating media for a talk that Assange gave in Stockholm, but he was not an actual employee of WikiLeaks. Davies gives an incorrect impression by calling him "the main coordinator for WikiLeaks in that city." That is why in the very next line in the transcript, we took the care of correcting Bostrom's relationship to the organization:
Narrator: The man in Sweden was Donald Bostrom, an investigative journalist who had agreed to help Julian Assange while he was in the country.
Note: Nick Davies has no first-hand knowledge of the events in Sweden but Alex Gibney uses him to relate (inaccurately) much of the story. Donald Bostrom is a Swedish journalist. He has never been an employee of WikiLeaks or co-ordinator for WikiLeaks.

Nick Davies:
Saturday, August the 21st I woke up, another journalist had sent an email with a link to the website of the Swedish newspaper, Expressen. I went to this website and I thought like “well, this is a joke, this is a spoof newspaper". These huge headlines, including one which claims that Julian Assange had sexually assaulted two women. What is this about? So I phoned a guy in Stockholm who is the main co-ordinator for WikiLeaks in that city and so I came on to this guy and said: "What on earth is going on?"
It would be more correct to say that WikiLeaks is a partisan adversary of Davies.

Nick Davies may be the most highly-respected investigative journalist in Britain today. He has not only been the British Press Awards' Reporter of the Year, Journalist of the Year, and Feature Writer of the Year, he was also the recipient of the inaugural Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism in 1999. Over his nearly forty year career, he has broken many of British journalism's most remarkable and influential stories.

Davies has a quite different account of the matter WikiLeaks raises, in regard to how they "would bring TV into the [Afghan War Logs] release." However, this "context," whose absence WikiLeaks laments, is completely irrelevant to Davies relaying the account he received from Bostrom, which Bostrom corroborates.

Its irrelevance is revealed in WikiLeaks's annotations themselves. Note that WikiLeaks is not contesting the substance of Davies's actual statement here. In fact, despite WikiLeaks saying that our use of Davies's interview "inaccurately" tells the Swedish part of the story, the organization happens to contest just a single assertion that Davies makes about the case.

This is another instance in which WikiLeaks posts a lengthy diatribe irrelevant to the story we tell in an attempt to diminish the credibility of our interviewees and increase the quantity of their annotations. This tactic is intended to give the appearance of numerous problems with the film.
Nick Davies is a partisan adversary of WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks had informed The Guardian, through Nick Davies, from the start that in order to maximise the impact of the release WikiLeaks would bring TV into the release. Davies did not accept that the Guardian would not have total exclusivity in the UK, not just print exclusivity, and became antagonistic to Assange. None of this context is given by Gibney.

After his fight over exclusivity, Davies published an error filled sex article about Assange. He was criticised by other journalists for unprofessional conduct. In response, he physically attacked one of them.


This is another repetition by WikiLeaks, irrelevant to this scene in the film, used by the organization to fill out their annotations. We address both of the claims here. Repetitions of other material are here, here, and here.
Nick Davies has also internalised and repeated the falsehood, first spread by his colleague at The Guardian David Leigh, that Julian Assange said "Afghan informers deserve to die". Leigh falsely claimed Julian Assange had made this statement at a dinner at which Davies was not present. An American journalist working for Der Spiegel, who was present at that dinner, John Goetz, has said this is untrue and has written a witness statement to this effect.

Note: Click here.

Gibney and his producer Alexis Bloom were provided with the witness statement. Gibney nevertheless chooses to keep Davies quote - without qualification - and altogether ignore Goetz's witness statement. This can only encourage the audience to accept the prosecution of WikiLeaks and other media organisations.

This is another instance of WikiLeaks claiming to know that an interview was "selectively edited" while having no access to the interview we actually conducted.

In this case, WikiLeaks has chosen to link to a statement given by Bostrom to Swedish police, in which Bostrom (entirely contrary to what WikiLeaks writes) corroborates nearly everything that he says in our film. For instance, he confirms that, like Davies, he was initially quite surprised about allegations against Assange:
Donald Bostrom: So that's the background story and I believe, I think Anna is very, very credible. Or at least I've thought so all along. Uh, so I don't dismiss it but contact Julian and confront him with this right away. Something like what the fuck is going on? Um, and his reaction is shock, he doesn't understand anything, of course he has a contrary story.
WikiLeaks clearly expects the reader not to have the vast amount of time necessary to click through and carefully review their scores of links. Instead, they hope their mere presence will give their annotations the appearance of validity.
Note: Gibney's interview with Donald Bostrom is selectively edited. This can be ascertained by consulting what Bostrom has said elsewhere, both in his witness statement to police and in press interviews.

Source: Donald Bostrom witness statement:
Click here.
Source:
Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The man in Sweden was Donald Bostrom, an investigative journalist who had agreed to help Julian Assange while he was in the country.
WikiLeaks claims above that our interview with Donald Bostrom is "selectively edited" and that his interview with Swedish police shows this to be true. Compare our quote at right to Bostrom's interview with police:
Bostrom: So precisely what he's done and with whom I don't know, but there's a common perception...

Police Interviewer: Hmmm.

Bostrom: Of course and it's that he attracts a lot of women. In other words it's so remarkable. And it's a little bit, yeah it's a bit of a rock star phenomenon so to speak.

Police Interviewer: OK.

Bostrom: The world's most famous man...

Police Interviewer: Yes.

Bostrom: In the eyes of some people, in other words during a certain period he was that. Unbelievably intelligent, that's attractive and he challenges, in other words the Pentagon and so... That impresses a lot of people and I've seen very many women, I can say the overwhelming majority of women who've come into contact with him have fallen head over heels.

Police Interviewer: Hmmm.

Bostrom: Uh, they're totally enchanted. Uh, really. And I've been able to draw the conclusion that he's been able to take advantage of this, we can put it like that. But precisely with whom, how many and what, that I don't know.
Donald Bostrom:
It was kind of the new Mick Jagger. And, yeah, really, really - groupies, stalkers, media - everyone had a big interest in Julian at the time. And he liked it.
Alex Gibney:
He liked it?
Donald Bostrom:
Of course.
WikiLeaks has a valid point here about our narration. At the beginning of the movie we actually discuss this very thing:
Narrator: The website boasted an electronic drop box and could receive secrets sent by people who didn't want to reveal who they were. Once WikiLeaks had the secrets it would publish them across servers, domain names and networks so numerous that the information could never be taken down.
At this point in the film though, the phrase "its servers" does imply that all of WikiLeaks's servers were located in Sweden. That would be incorrect. While their Swedish hosting was particularly prominent, WikiLeaks did have servers in other countries as well. We should have instead said:
Assange had thought of moving his base to Sweden where WikiLeaks kept some of its servers.
Note: In fact, WikiLeaks kept its servers in many countries, among them: WikiLeaks continues to distribute its web presence across multiple jurisdictions. This is an explicit undertaking designed to make WikiLeaks uncensorable.

Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Assange had thought of moving his base to Sweden where WikiLeaks kept its servers. Laws were more favourable to press freedoms and where Assange had a growing fan base. Fame offered Assange a platform, but it also made him a visible target.
WikiLeaks claims above that our interview with Donald Bostrom is selectively edited and that his interview with Swedish police shows this to be true. Compare our quote at right to Bostrom's interview with police:
Police Interviewer: And have you had, yeah shall we say ethical conversations with him?

Bostrom: Yes.

Police Interviewer: You have?

Bostrom: Yes, I have.

Police Interviewer: Yes.

Bostrom: Uh, because there's such an astonishing onslaught of women. In other words it takes seconds, in other words it's obvious... And when it's like that so uh, so I think one has to um, keep things under control. For different reasons, in other words partly there's an ethical, moral way then so to speak but, but uh, I can't actually get into that for I don't know what he's done and not done so to speak what.

Police Interviewer: No.

Bostrom: It's like take care of... It was like this, if it's going to be like this so one must, a, take care of it really, really well. Take care of it so no girls, yeah... But the other thing we spoke about and got caught up in with our discussions that is more the security angle. Uh, that he's given the impression of himself, which I think is partly accurate at any rate, of being a hunted man. He's not really all too popular in the US. According to reliable sources that I've read in many places so over one hundred people, who they are in the Pentagon who are trying to crack his codes, yeah... There's a hunt around, uh, and above all he's sitting on materials that can hurt, that they in the US think can hurt them.
Donald Bostrom:
I said: "Julian, I think you are on the list of undesirable people for some governments. Recently in Russia some journalists were compromised by girls in short skirts, it’s a very easy trick, it's dead easy." That was exactly one week before everything happened.
Another news montage of reports on the allegations against Assange, including a Chinese cartoon video of the allegations.
This is irrelevant. The DNA on the condom is one among hundreds of details that prosecutors balanced before bringing the case. Raising the issue here is part of WikiLeaks's campaign to adjudicate the case in every arena other than the Swedish courts. The presence or absence of DNA, and its relation to Assange's guilt or innocence under Swedish law, should be decided by the Swedish legal system.

It's also irrelevant to the point our film is making: In late 2010, many people found the few public details about the case to be extremely peculiar. This is what our narrator says.
Note: It is surprising, given Gibney's reference to a report on the burst condom that he fails to mention its other, rather more sensational, finding: the absence of any chromosomal DNA. This has been widely reported:

Source: Missing DNA evidence in Julian Assange sexual assault case
Narration by Alex Gibney:
An unknown source leaked the police report to the press. It included the testimony of Assange, the two women and, surprisingly, a picture of a torn condom. There were other peculiar things going on. The case of one woman was dropped and then re-opened.
Gavin MacFadyen:
The general sense was that it's awful curious that these charges would emerge just after a very embarrassing, damaging leak.
Nick Davies:
There were various possibilities here. One was that some women who wanted to sell a story to the newspapers had set him up. Another was that a really nasty right-wing group in Sweden had conspired to set him up. Maybe, maybe some dark agency from the United States had done this. And, way out on the extreme ranges of possibility, well maybe he did it, I don’t know.
Footage of Julian being interviewed.
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Interviewer:
Did anything happen between you and these two women that could be construed as sexual coercion or rape?
Julian Assange:
No words, no actions, no violence – there is nothing that could be construed as rape. Nothing at all.
Interviewer:
Or sexual coercion?
Julian Assange:
Well, I don’t know what the hell that means.
Footage: Julian Assange in various interviews.
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Julian Assange:
Well, there's no doubt that this organisation is under siege.
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Julian Assange:
It was clearly a smear campaign.
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Julian Assange:
This was clearly a smear campaign, the only question is who is involved.
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Julian Assange:
We were warned by Australian intelligence that we would receive such an attack.
More footage of news reports about the Swedish allegations.
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Newsreader:
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is calling it a smear campaign.
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Newsreader:
His supporters claim that the warrant is a way of silencing him.
Footage of Michael Moore talking about the case.
The attribution is particularly sloppy here. Rather than all of this being said by Michael Moore, the actual speakers are:

Cenk Uygur: You’re telling me this isn’t a witch hunt, this isn’t a smear job? C’mon.

Geraldo Rivera: One accuser apparently worked with Cuban exiles and there’s a story around that she’s a CIA operative?

Michael Moore: This whole thing stinks to the high heavens, I gotta tell ya. I’ve seen this enough times, where governments and corporations, they go after people with this kind of lie and smear. This is all a bunch of hooey as far as I’m concerned.

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Michael Moore:
Are you telling me this isn't a witch hunt? This isn't a smear job? Come on, the accuser apparently worked with the Cuban exiles and there's a story around that she's a CIA operative. This whole thing stinks to the high heavens, I gotta tell ya. I've seen this enough times where governments or corporations they go after people with this kind of lie and smear. This is a whole bunch of hooey as far as I'm concerned.
Footage of Mark Stephens interview.
Assange gets the name of his lawyer wrong here. The correct spelling is Mark Stephens.
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Mark Stevens:
Well, it's certainly a surreal Swedish fairy tale. The only thing which hasn't walked onto stage yet are the trolls, and I'm waiting for them to arrive.
Footage of Julian Assange interview with CNN to discuss Afghan War Logs.
At the time of the interview, many people were suggesting that the Swedish case was an underhanded attack on the WikiLeaks organization for its work on publishing the Manning leaks. Assange himself tweeted that the case was a "dirty trick" that WikiLeaks had been warned to look out for. But when asked here by a reporter to explain what was happening, he said that he wouldn't answer questions about his personal life.

When Assange want the Swedish case to be about WikiLeaks, it's about WikiLeaks. When he's pressed about it by reporters, it becomes his "personal life" and off-limits, so much so that he will walk out of an interview rather than address it. CNN interviewer Atika Shubert was right to press him on the rumors he himself had promoted.
Note: The use of this clip shows biased editing. In the original footage Julian Assange explains the reason he feels questions about the Swedish case "contaminate" the interview is because it had been arranged to discuss the disclosure by WikiLeaks of 100,000 previously unreported deaths, but this context is omitted in Gibney's documentary. The full clip restores the context.

Source:
Click here.
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Julian Assange:
It is my role to be the lightening rod to attract the attacks against the organization for our work.
Interviewer:
And one aspect of that has been the legal situation for yourself in Sweden?
Julian Assange:
No, I'm not going to talk about that in relation to this.
Interviewer:
But it does affect WikiLeaks?
Julian Assange:
I will have to walk if you're...
Interviewer:
Do you still, you once...
Julian Assange:
...if you are going to contaminate this extremely serious interview with questions about my personal life.
Interviewer:
I'm not. What I'm asking is if you feel that it's an attack on WikiLeaks?
In the stock footage, Assange takes off his sound mic.
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Interviewer:
Julian, I'm happy to go on to that as the next question, all I'm asking is...
Julian Assange:
Well, look...
In the stock footage, Assange walks out of interview.
WikiLeaks neglects to mention that Swedish prosecutors actually did interview Assange just ten days after the allegations originally arose. They required a second interview, which is what WikiLeaks refers to when they mention the "5 weeks" timeline.

They also fail to mention that in the Agreed Statement of Facts and Issues in Assange's UK extradition case, Assange admitted that:
  • On September 21, Assange's Swedish lawyer provisionally agreed that the prosecutor could interview Assange on September 28.
  • Despite this—and despite his apparent interest in being interviewed—Assange decided to leave Sweden on September 27, the day before the interview was to take place.
In reality, soon after his "pre-arranged business meeting in Berlin," Assange was scheduled for a pre-arranged public event in Stockholm. It was with the understanding that he would be returning to Sweden that the Swedish government gave him permission to leave in the first place. Once gone, Assange changed his mind, broke off his Stockholm engagement, and decided against returning to Sweden.

While it's not a flattering detail for the prosecution that they took more than five weeks to interview Assange again—particularly when he made a few attempts to push things along—it can hardly be considered irregular. In this particular case, the prosecution started to bring in other witnesses two-and-a-half weeks after the initial warrant was announced and they were still interviewing witnesses a month after Assange left Sweden. They would gladly have interviewed Assange if he had returned. For three years, he's chosen not to.

In truth though, the issue of interviewing or questioning Assange is no longer really relevant. The reason for that is:
Note: On September 15, 2010, the Swedish prosecutor confirmed that "he is not a wanted man" and that Julian Assange was free to leave Sweden. Despite requests to be interviewed during the 5 weeks he remained in Sweden, the reasons given why this was impossible were "it's a weekend", "the investigator is off sick" and "it's too late". He finally left Sweden on September 27 for a pre-arranged business meeting in Berlin. Once in the UK he instructed his lawyers to contact the Metropolitan Police to inform them how he could be reached.

Source:
Click here.
More: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The case in Sweden was still unresolved, while the investigation continued, prosecutors permitted Assange to leave Sweden on the understanding that he reappear for questioning. But Assange never went back, convinced Sweden was a trap, he went underground in London.
Despite his regular and lengthy claims to the contrary, Assange is no longer wanted in Sweden "for questioning." That was the case three years ago, but at this point he is wanted in Sweden so that the prosecution can press charges. The normal procedure in the Swedish legal system, which the prosecutors in this case have chosen to follow, is for a suspect to be brought in for final questioning before charges are preferred.

Assange has spent three years claiming that he is only wanted in Sweden for questioning in order to make the extradition request appear either 1) petty and unreasonable; or, if one considers the amount of resources put into the extradition, 2) underhanded and conspiratorial. British courts, including the UK Supreme Court, have rejected this reasoning, not least because the Swedish prosecutor made clear her intent to charge Assange in her testimony to these courts.

Swedish prosecutors have refused to interview Assange abroad because they no longer want to interview him; they want to put him on trial.
Note: To date, the Swedish prosecutor has refused to give a reason why Julian Assange cannot be interviewed abroad under standard Mutual Legal Assistance procedures, which is both legal and routine in Sweden, or why the need for him to be in custody for questioning is considered essential. The Ecuadorean government has made formal offers to the Swedish Foreign Office to facilitate this questioning in either their London embassy, where Julian Assange has now been granted political asylum, or their Stockholm embassy, but all offers have been refused.

Source:
Click here.
Source:
Click here.
Source:
Click here.

Mark Davis:
Julian has a certain paranoia. But, in the time that I was with him, I think that high security awareness was actually relevant; it was appropriate. Mind you, he had been living like that for the past, you know, 5 or 10 years, when it probably wasn’t appropriate.
Footage of Julian Assange.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
I never have a good reason to be paranoid; I have a good reason to be careful. The stakes are high so you need to be meticulously careful every day.
Part of the disagreement here seems to have to do with the timeframe involved. In the statement immediately preceding this one, Davis says:
Julian has a certain paranoia, but in the time I was with him I think that high security awareness was actually relevant, it was appropriate. Mind you, he’d been living like that for the past, you know, five or ten years when it probably wasn’t appropriate.
A charitable reading of Davis might include the examples WikiLeaks raises. The Kenyan assassinations occurred less than a year before Collateral Murder's release. The U.S. counterintelligence report was written approximately two years before Collateral Murder. They are far more recent than the five to ten year timeframe he discusses.

In fact, Davis and WikiLeaks do not disagree that Assange had become "the focus of intense enemies" over time. They simply disagree about whether he had mistakenly thought that he was the focus of intense enemies before he in fact was.

With this in mind, the alternative interpretation is that Davis, who was quite aware of the Kenyan assassinations and the 2008 U.S. counterintelligence report, simply disagrees that the earlier threat was anywhere close to on par with what Assange faced in mid 2010.
Note: The surveillance of WikiLeaks and Julian Assange is well documented and is a serious matter. For instance, as far back as 2008 US military intelligence prepared a classified report on how methods to destroy WikiLeaks' "center of gravity". Two of Assange's Kenyan associates, Oscar Kamau Kingara and John Paul Oulo were assassinated on March 6, 2009 in a matter connected to WikiLeaks' publications about extrajudicial assassinations.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Mark Davis:
He'd been training for this moment in evasive tactics and changing phones and taking out batteries and changing computers. It may have been a fantasy before, but it served him well because it became real. He was the focus of intense enemies.
This is the only example WikiLeaks offers that would fit into the longer sort of timeframe where Davis would deem security-awareness inappropriate. It's not a terrible point by WikiLeaks: if Assange was paranoid, perhaps it was because he had been burned before. Of course, in this case, Assange was being surveilled by Australian police because he was breaking dozens of federal laws, which he eventually pled guilty to. So it's not a perfect example in his favor.
As a teenager Assange had his phone tapped and had been physically surveilled by Australian Federal Police in Operation Weather.

Source: Click here.

News footage
STOCK
Newsreader:
Right now, the Pentagon are reportedly searching for Julian Assange, potentially on the verge of releasing a huge new stash of confidential documents.
Nick Davies:
He was putting his head above the parapet. He was putting himself in a dangerous position, and I think on the whole he handled the dangers pretty well. You know, there is a side to this guy which is great. And then there's this hidden side which has been so destructive.
What WikiLeaks is referring to here is a bit unclear. First, one of their links leads to a completely different person's criticisms of Daniel Domscheit-Berg.

Their other link does indeed lead to an essay about Assange written by Robert Manne, which happens to be quite good despite the fact that the two have never met. The essay WikiLeaks links to includes the passage:
Putting [New Yorker writer] Khatchadourian and [former Assange co-author] Dreyfus together, and adding a little detail from a blog that Assange published on the internet in 2006–07 and checking it against commonsense and some material that has emerged since his rise to fame, the story of Assange’s childhood and adolescence can be told in some detail. There is, however, a problem. Journalists as senior as David Leigh of the Guardian or John F. Burns of the New York Times in general accept on trust many of Assange’s stories about himself. They do not understand that, like many natural writers, he has fashioned his life into a fable.
This fits with Manne's statement here in our film.
Note: Robert Manne, who has never met Julian Assange, has retracted this statement. The original statement was made in an essay about Assange after reading Daniel Domscheit-Berg's error-filled book. Robert Manne subsequently released an updated essay with the statement explicitly removed.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Robert Manne:
He's a natural fabulist and storyteller and lives intensely in his imagination, and to some extent that imaginary world that he inhabits becomes more real than the, as it were, often more mundane reality that we all live in.
Footage of Julian Assange answering press questions.
STOCK
Journalist:
You talked about massive surveillance as the US investigation into WikiLeaks.
Julian Assange:
We certainly were under surveillance in Iceland. I personally had chased people who were surveilling me there with video cameras.
Assange has yet to substantiate in any way his allegations that two State Department officials were following him, more than three years after he claimed to have proof that it was happening:

WikiLeaks Twitter account: Two under State Dep diplomatic cover followed our editor from Iceland
(Link)

WikiLeaks Twitter account: We have airline records of the State Dep/CIA tails. Don't think you can get away with it. You cannot. This is WikiLeaks.
(Link)

Similarly, he has never substantiated this bold claim, which is supposed to have happened a year before the FBI visited Iceland:

Julian Assange: We certainly were under surveillance in Iceland. I personally had chased people who were surveilling me there with video cameras.

WikiLeaks Twitter account: WikiLeaks is currently under an aggressive US and Icelandic surveillance operation. Following/
photographing/filming/detaining.
(Link)

The bizarre case that WikiLeaks refers to in their note was fully revealed by Wired and covered well in Ars Technica. While quite serious, it actually began more than a year after Assange made the above unexplained allegations of surveillance. Furthermore, the FBI's reliance on the duplicitous and unreliable young ex-volunteer Siggi Thordarson reveals just how little real information they had about WikiLeaks, and thus just how shoddy their surveillance of the organization was to that point.

It should be noted that that Assange's strong security awareness failed him in this case. Several people advised Assange not to trust Thordarson, particularly after he became implicated in a political scandal involving a "spy computer" in parliament. Assange decided to ignore the advice, telling Thordarson:
I will defend you against all accusations, [right] and wrong, and stick by you, as I have done... But I expect total loyalty in return.
Note: In 2011 eight FBI agents secretly flew to Iceland to interrogate a young WikiLeaks ex-volunteer without the permission of the Icelandic authorities. On hearing about the FBI's unauthorised operation in Iceland, the Interior Minister, Ögmundur Jónasson, ordered the FBI to leave the country and told the Icelandic police to cease all co-operation, but in fact the FBI agents stayed a further 5 days, interviewing the vulnerable young man in hotel rooms and then flew him back to Washington DC for 4 more days of questioning.

Source:
Click here.
More: Click here.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
He travelled to a conference in Oslo and then made these allegations that two State Department officials had been on the airplane to follow him – but there's no proof. And this is what got tiring to a lot of us over time. Julian was constantly propagating how much we were in danger and all of these things, but this was just lies and propaganda.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


WikiLeaks Twitter account:
Two under State Dep diplomatic cover followed our editor from Iceland
Smari McCarthy:
Maybe it's the fame, maybe it's the attention, maybe it's the pressures of working in this kind of environment but, you know, somehow this idealist that I met became something else somewhere through the story.
A starkly different account is given by others. In Domscheit-Berg's book about his time in WikiLeaks, he says that he and the Architect, the secretive figure who designed WikiLeaks's submission system, had been in a running argument with Assange over misleading public statements he had been making. After being ignored by Assange for weeks, they decided to temporarily shut down a few parts of the WikiLeaks website and change a few passwords in order "to shake Julian up." Assange responded by taking the whole WikiLeaks.org domain down, and Domscheit-Berg and the Architect immediately gave in.

Forbes writer Andy Greenberg confirms this account in his excellent book about WikiLeaks and its techno-ideological roots, This Machine Kills Secrets. Greenberg describes the action taken by Domscheit-Berg and the Architect as "a kind of strike to get the group's attention."

Given these details, this note seems to simply be an overstatement on WikiLeaks's part. Rather than giving the reasonable argument that Domscheit-Berg and the Architect went much too far in their tactics for influencing an intra-organizational debate, WikiLeaks chooses to say that Domscheit-Berg "was caught in the act of sabotaging" systems. But by doing so, they mislead the reader again.
Note: On August 25, 2010 Daniel Domscheit-Berg was caught in the act of sabotaging WikiLeaks mail server. He was suspended the following day. The Newsweek article is dated August 26, 2010.

Source:
Inside WikiLeaks, by Daniel Domscheit-Berg Click here.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
This whole topic just headed into a really bad direction. There was this article in Newsweek – that’s what Julian took as a proof that I had been speaking to the press. From that day on, I was a traitor, I was trying to stab him in the back. It boiled down to me being suspended for, as Julian put it, “disloyalty, insubordination and destabilization in times of crisis".
Alex Gibney:
Where did that language come from?
The phrase "a proven libel" would seem to indicate that Assange has victoriously pursued the matter in court. He has not.

What Domscheit-Berg seems to be referring to is the Espionage Act's 1918 amendment (often called the Sedition Act), which WikiLeaks neglects to link to. Compare Domscheit-Berg's language:
disloyalty, insubordination and destabilization in times of crisis
To the 1918 amendment's language:
when the United States is at war, [it shall be illegal to] wilfully cause... or incite... insubordination, disloyalty, mutiny, or refusal of duty, in the military or naval forces of the United States.
Furthermore, consider the relevant passage in Domscheit-Berg's book:
Last, when he tried to kick me out of WikiLeaks he said the reason was "Disloyalty, Insubordination and Destabilization in Times of Crisis." These were concepts taken from the Espionage Act of 1917, which came into force just after the United States entered World War I.
Domscheit-Berg's line in our film is clearly meant to be a paraphrase of the Espionage Act, not a direct quote. WikiLeaks would have been more than correct in saying that Domscheit-Berg did not have the language precisely right. Instead, they chose to attack his credibility by saying that he is "lying" and engaging in "proven libel."
Note: This is a proven libel. Domscheit-Berg uses the qualification "as much as I can tell" to excuse the fact that he is lying. This language is not from the Espionage Act of 1917 or any other year. The phrase simply isn't present. Domscheit-Berg's attribution is easily demonstrated as false by consulting the original text of the Act. Unconcerned that this is an outright falsehood, Gibney goes on to brandish it as a "cruel irony".

Source:
United States Espionage Act of 1917 Click here.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
I think as much as I can tell, that's from the Espionage Act of 1917.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
That was a cruel irony. Across the Atlantic, the United States Department of Justice was investigating whether it could use the Espionage Act to put Julian Assange in jail.
Bill Leonard:
The Espionage Act is primarily intended to address situations where individuals pass national defense information over to the enemy in order to allow the enemy to harm us. It would be unprecedented if the Espionage Act was being used to attack individuals who did not do anything more than the New York Times or the Washington Post does every day.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The next big releases were the Iraq War Logs. This time WikiLeaks had worked with volunteers to devise a computer program to solve the redaction problems. There were almost 400,000 documents detailing that the US military had purposefully hidden information about civilian casualties and systematic torture.
Iain Overton:
President Obama sanctioned the mass handover of Iraqi prisoners of war from the American troops over to the Iraqi authorities and one of the things that is against the Geneva Conventions is that you cannot hand over a prisoner of war to another authority who you know commits torture.
News footage of Department of Defense spokesman Geoff Morrell.
STOCK
Geoff Morrell:
Well, let me just say with regard to the allegations of not intervening when coming across detainee abuse, well, it's not true.
James Ball:
They had 1,300 allegations, with medical evidence, of quite horrific torture by Iraqi army and police against detainees.
Iain Overton:
We are talking about sodomy, we are talking about using rubber hoses and beating people, we are talking about murder. I mean, the sort of torture that we were supposedly liberating Iraq from.
James Ball:
The US administration under Bush and under Obama continued turning over prisoners despite knowing this. That is against the Geneva Convention. The Obama administration appears to have committed war crimes. Who knew that before?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
Items of historical significance for two wars
Iraq and Afghanistan…

This is possibly one of the most significant documents of our time, removing the fog of war and revealing the true nature of 21st century asymmetric warfare.

Have a good day.

Bradley Manning's letter to WikiLeaks
This is completely false. Since well before the release of our film, WikiLeaks has attempted to employ the strategy of smearing our director, Alex Gibney, by portraying him as insensitive or bigoted. In fact, the film goes to great lengths to make Manning's political motivations clear, which any viewer of the film can attest to.

In fact, it is WikiLeaks who chose to remove all of Manning's words from their original transcript of the film. By removing these words, they engage in censorship not only of the film, but of Manning, silencing her from reaching the readers of this document. We hypothesize as to why they chose to do this above.
Note: Throughout the film Gibney attempts to ascribe psychological rather than political motives to Bradley Manning's alleged whistleblowing, trivialising the political significance of Manning's alleged actions. The same tactic has been employed by US military prosecutors at Manning's pre-trial hearings. The film focuses on his alleged sexuality, his alleged gender dysphoria and at one point even super-imposes a picture of his face on that of Jean Harlow. Manning's political and principled motivations for disclosing the information are detailed clearly in the statement he himself made in the court-martial proceedings:

Source: Click here.

Narration by Alex Gibney:
Just what had happened with Bradley Manning? Was this just a data dump? Or was this the act of a man who had peaked behind the curtain of a superpower and decided that what it was doing was wrong? After the leaks, and just before he was arrested, Manning was trying to reckon with what he had done and where he was going.
Funny enough, rather than "[make] no effort to explore the politicizing effects" of Manning's deployment to Iraq, earlier in the film we cover the exact same incident that WikiLeaks describes here. Readers might know that except that it's contained in the chat logs WikiLeaks omitted from this transcript.

Moreover, it's galling that WikiLeaks would choose this particular example to demonstrate Manning's politicization. As Manning revealed in the testimony that WikiLeaks links to, Manning tried to leak information about this incident to WikiLeaks—but they chose not to publish it. Indeed, her contact at WikiLeaks, "Nathaniel" (who Manning believed might be Assange), decided that the material was not worth publishing because it would not garner enough media attention for WikiLeaks. From Manning's testimony:

Instead of assisting the Special Unit of the Baghdad Federal Police, I decided to take the information and expose it to the WLO [WikiLeaks Organization], in the hope that before the upcoming 7 March 2010 election, they could generate some immediate press on the issue and prevent this unit of the Federal Police from continuing to crack down on political opponents of al-Maliki.

On 4 March 2010, I burned the report, the photos, the high resolution copy of the pamphlet, and the interpreter's hand written transcript onto a CD-RW. I took the CD-RW to my CHU and copied the data onto my personal computer. Unlike the times before, instead of uploading the information through the WLO website's submission form. I made a Secure File Transfer Protocol or SFTP connection to a file drop box operated by the WLO.

The drop box contained a folder that allowed me to upload directly into it. Saving files into this directory, allowed anyone with log in access to the server to view and download them. After uploading these files to the WLO, on 5 March 2010, I notified Nathaniel over Jabber. Although sympathetic, he said that the WLO needed more information to confirm the event in order for it to be published or to gain interest in the international media.

I attempted to provide the specifics, but to my disappointment, the WLO website chose not to publish this information.

Despite the importance of the case to Manning, WikiLeaks chose to ignore evidence of torture in Iraq rather than to publish the information.

It should be noted that WikiLeaks has happily published grossly unsubstantiated documents in the past, as long as they were the type of documents that might attract media attention. For example, in a bid to attract media attention in 2008, they published a hoax document purporting to be a positive HIV test for Steve Jobs. Just minutes after Jobs's death was announced in October 2011, WikiLeaks decided to retweet the fake document to their millions of followers.
Gibney's portrayal of Manning is as a disempowered individual, rather than as someone courageous and principled. Gibney makes no effort to explore the politicizing effects that deployment to a war zone had on the young soldier. As we now know from Manning's plea statement, his discovery of the US military's complicity in Iraqi torture disturbed him greatly. After informing his superiors that some detainees were guilty of nothing more than printing leaflets containing a benign political critique:
"They told me to quote "drop it" unquote and to just assist them and the Federal Police in finding out, where more of these print shops creating quote "anti-Iraqi literature" unquote. I couldn't believe what I heard... I knew that if I continued to assist the Baghdad Federal Police in identifying the political opponents of Prime Minister al-Maliki, those people would be arrested and in the custody of the Special Unit of the Baghdad Federal Police and very likely tortured."
Source: Click here.

In his plea statement, Manning says that he experienced conscientious alarm after he viewed the Apache helicopter gunship video ("Collateral Murder"). He says:
I hoped that the public would be as alarmed as me about the conduct of the aerial weapons team crew members. I wanted the American public to know that not everyone in Iraq and Afghanistan are targets that needed to be neutralized, but rather people who were struggling to live in the pressure cooker environment of what we call asymmetric warfare.
Source: Click here.



Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i had about three breakdowns...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
each one revealing more and more
of my uncertainty and emotional insecurity

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
8 months ago, if you'd asked me whether
i would identify as a female, i'd say you were crazy...
Jihrleah Showman:
There was never even a possibility that anyone could assume that he had a female personality.
Alex Gibney:
You mean that he wanted to become a woman?
Jihrleah Showman:
Well, we knew that he was at least considering hormone therapy, but no one cared. It wasn’t like ok, he's going to have to start showering with the females. Literally, nobody cared.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
im pretty reckless at this point
Jason Edwards:
He would call me and cry – very loud, sobbing like a child – just in a state of utter loss, and he kept saying: "I won't make it, I can't make it, I can't do this."

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
im trying not to end up with 5.56mm rounds in my forehead...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
that i fired...
Jason Edwards:
I constantly asked him – do you have someone, do you have anyone to talk to that's there, that you can see on a daily basis? And he assured me that he did not.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Manning did reach out for help at least once in an email to his master sargeant. Manning attached to the email a picture of himself dressed as a woman.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
I've been trying very, very hard
to get rid of it (GENDER IDENTITY DISORDER).
It is not going away...

It's the cause of my pain and confusion...

It makes my entire life feel like a bad dream
that won't end...

...at this point I feel like I am not here anymore.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Several weeks later around dinner time, Manning was discovered lying on the ground. With a knife, he had scrawled on a chair the words “I want”. Later that same evening, Manning tried to go back to work.
Jihrleah Showman:
I was off shift and I had to come in to find something that he should have been able to find, and he was pacing back and forth saying smart comments to me, and I blatantly said: “Manning, how about you fix your shit before you try to fix mine?” And he screamed and punched me in the face, while I was sitting down. My adrenalin immediately hit overload. I stood up, pushed my chair back. He continued to try to fight me but I put him in, you know, what UFC would call 'guillotine' and, you know, pulled him on the floor and laid on top of him and pinned his arms, you know, beside his head. At that time, I can’t believe that he'd mess with me. I literally had 15-inch biceps. I was the last person he probably should have punched.

My superiors decided that it was just escalating too much and that he had to be removed and have his weapon taken away from him.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i punched a dyke in the phace...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
not proud of it at all
Jihrleah Showman:
At that point he never came back in the office. He had to go work with the first sargeant in the mailroom.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
at the very least i was able to keep my security clearance
[so far]
A patently false claim. The film does not make the slightest implication of "petty personal revenge" being a motivating factor in Manning's leaks, here or elsewhere. This line is simply documenting of the failures of Manning's superiors to protect documents the military believed to be highly sensitive. Later in the film, we take the Army to task for focusing their prosecution entirely on Manning while ignoring the failures in leadership above her.
Note: The chronology is manipulated to frame Manning. Here Gibney tries to diminish Manning's alleged ethical motivations and frame him as acting out of petty personal revenge. However prosecution documents state just the opposite--Manning's alleged submissions to WikiLeaks are alleged by the prosecution to have already occurred by the time of the incident described.

Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In the mailroom, Manning still had an internet connection to military networks. His gun had been taken away but he still had access to millions of classified documents.
This is said by Gen. Michael Hayden, former head of the CIA and NSA. Elsewhere in the film, WikiLeaks correctly identifies him, including just a few moments after this. It is not entirely clear why they choose to refer to him in this section as "US Army security specialist."
US Army security specialist:
We have personnel security programmes and we try to take a look at the folks to whom we give security clearances. Should this young man have been given that clearance? In retrospect, certainly not. In prospect, who knows? And these are the kind of decisions that are difficult to make, but let me put it to you this way - the American army has had incredibly stupid PFCs for more than two centuries, and PFCs occasionally do incredibly stupid things.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
im sorry, im a total mess right now... :'(

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
and little does anyone know, but among this "visible" mess

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
theres the mess i created that no-one knows about
yet
Jihrleah Showman:
I didn’t see him get arrested but I saw him walk down the hall with about 4 MPs. He had a grin on his face. Like, I'm on top of the world.
Jason Edwards:
The last communication I received from him was that I was going to hear something that would shock the world.
Telephone by Lady Gaga starts playing. Chat logs appear on screen.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
they were stored on a centralized server…
i would come in with music on a CD-RW...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
labelled with something like "Lady Gaga"…
erase the music... then write a compressed split file

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
no-one suspected a thing

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
listened and lip-synced to Lady Gaga's Telephone while exfiltrating possibly the largest data spillage in american history
US Army security specialist:
I mean, it’s a pretty simple process – dropping CDs into your tower and downloading large volumes of information. I mean, it wasn't incredibly sophisticated.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
But that’s not quite true. Manning turned his computers into efficient exfiltration machines. Over several months, Manning made over 794,000 connections with the State Department server. He downloaded hundreds of thousands of documents without anyone noticing. When he hit a snag, he reached out to another hacker for advice on how to crack passwords.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Chat between Manning and WikiLeaks contact:
bradley:
Any good at LM-Hash cracking?

pressassocation@jabber.ccc.de:
Yes, we have rainbow tables for LM.

pressassociation@jabber.ccc.de:
Passed it on to our guys.
We are careful not to say that Manning was chatting with Assange himself, because there is no definitive evidence that she was. But to say there is no evidence at all is incorrect.

First, there is the fact that we report: at the same pre-trial hearing WikiLeaks cites, it was revealed that Manning had used the alias "Julian Assange" to refer to the person she was chatting with at WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks ignores this.

There is also Manning's claim, in her lengthy online chats with Adrian Lamo, that she had confirmed that she was talking to Assange:

bradass87: i mean, im a high profile source… and i’ve developed a relationship with assange… but i dont know much more than what he tells me, which is very little

bradass87: it took me four months to confirm that the person i was communicating [with] was in fact assange

Note: There is no evidence that Manning was communicating with Assange. Bradley Manning says he was not even sure he was allegedly talking to at Wikileaks – and this had been widely reported following Manning's first pre-trial hearing in December 2011 (that he did not know; likewise in his plea to the court.)
Due to the strict adherence of anonymity by the WLO [WikiLeaks], we never exchanged identifying information. However, I believe the individual was likely Mr. Julian Assange [he pronounced it with three syllables], Mr. Daniel Schmidt, or a proxy representative of Mr. Assange and Schmidt.

As the communications transferred from IRC to the Jabber client, I gave 'office' and later 'pressassociation' the name of Nathaniel Frank in my address book, after the author of a book I read in 2009.
Furthermore, this had been widely reported following Manning's first pre-trial hearing in December 2011.

Source:
Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Later, Manning talked to him about the progress of the uploads. In Manning's buddy list, the address was listed under a familiar name: Julian Assange.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Chat between Manning and WikiLeaks contact:
bradley:
I'm throwing everything I got...at you now

julian assange:
OK, great...ETA?

bradley:
11-12 hours...it's been going 6 already

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
Hilary Clinton...diplomats around the world
are going to have a heart attack...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
when they wake up one morning and find...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
an entire repository of classified foreign policy is available...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
to the public.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
it affects everybody on earth...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
its open diplomacy...world-wide anarchy...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
its beautiful, and horrifying...
Narration by Alex Gibney:
On November 28th, 2010, WikiLeaks and its media partners began to publish a small fraction - carefully redacted - of the State Department cables supplied by Bradley Manning. The day-to-day memos of American diplomats revealed a surprising honesty about how the world really worked.
Heather Brooke:
It was that whole Wizard of Oz moment.
Footage from the Wizard of Oz movie.
Heather Brooke:
We all look at these politicans – oh wow, they're so powerful - and then it was the little dog pulling the curtain away.
Gibney:
The cables exposed criminal behaviour and corruption by tyrants in Egypt, Tunisia and Libya. That in turn helped to fuel exploding popular anger against repression, the so-called Arab Spring. The cables also told the truth about the faults of America's so-called allies, in ways that were bound to reveal their power and legitimacy were a kind of fraud.
PJ Crowley:
This leak is industrial scale. It touches every relationship the United States has with other countries around the world. Even as the United States and others tried to manage the impact of this it will be a wound that just keeps, you know, opening up on a recurring basis.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The behaviour of the United States was also exposed, as the cables exposed criminal cover-ups and a systematic policy of using diplomats to spy on foreign governments.
Michael Hayden:
Look, everyone has secrets. Some of the activities that nation states conduct in order to keep their people safe and free need to be secret in order to be successful. If they are broadly known, you cannot accomplish your work. Now, I'm going to be very candid, right? We steal secrets; we steal other nations' secrets. One cannot do that above board and be very successful for a very long period of time.
Footage of former US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton
STOCK
Hillary Clinton:
Disclosures like these tear at the fabric of the proper function of responsible government. People of good faith understand the need for sensitive diplomatic communications, both to protect the national interest and the global common interest.
Heather Brooke:
So, with the previous leaks, the American government they were obviously angry but they suddenly decided that, right, now it's time to get draconian on their ass.
Montage of various US Government officials speaking about Julian Assange and WikiLeaks.
Rep Candice Miller addressing Congress
STOCK
Candace Miller:
It's time that the Obama administration treats WikiLeaks for what it is, a terrorist organisation.
Former Speaker Newt Gingrich
STOCK
Newt Gingrich:
What we should do is treat Assange as an enemy combatant who's engaged in information warfare against the United States.
Then a rapid succession of derogatory remarks about Julian Assange.
STOCK
"He's a blackmailer"
"extortionist"
"terrorist"
"crackpot"
"alleged sex offender"
Former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove
STOCK
Karl Rove:
He's a criminal and he ought to be hunted down and grabbed and put on trial.
Footage of US Attorney-General Eric Holder.
STOCK
Eric Holder:
We have a very serious criminal investigation that's under way and we're looking at all the things that we can do to stem the flow of this information.
Senator Mitch McConnell
STOCK
Mitch McConnell
He needs to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and, if that becomes a problem, we need to change the law.
Fox News analyst Bob Beckel
STOCK
Bob Beckel:
We've got special ops forces, I mean, a dead man cant leak stuff, illegally shoot the son of a [beeped out].
Chairman of NY Security Guard Advisory Council Bo Dietl
STOCK
Bo Dietl:
This little punk, now I stand up for Obama. Obama, if you're listening today, you should take this guy out now.
Tom Flanagan, Adviser to the Canadian Prime Minister
STOCK
Tom Flanagan:
I think Obama should put out a contract and maybe use a drone or something.
Fox News anchor Bill O'Reilly
STOCK
Bill O'Reilly:
That's what I'd like to see, a little drone hit Assange, man.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
All the threats were aimed at Assange. No one called for attacks on the Guardian or the New York Times.
Mark Davis:
I found that astounding. If Julian Assange should be charged with some offence under American law, then absolutely the New York Times editor should be in the slammer with him.
It is true that we use the term "charges" a bit loosely here. But WikiLeaks and Assange have abused the term for years, as they do here, based on a general (and understandable) unfamiliarity with Swedish legal procedure in the anglophone world.

The Swedish prosecution has not charged Assange because they are following typical Swedish procedure, which entails waiting until he is in custody before preferring charges. Assange has said for years, and will continue to say, that he has not been charged, and thus there is no reason to go to Sweden. But he won't be charged until he does go. His protestations about an absence of charges are a game.
Note: This is false. There are no charges. Julian Assange is not charged and has never been charged in Sweden. The matter, formally, is at the stage of "preliminary investigation". The fact that an Interpol Red Notice was issued for Assange's arrest and extradition, leading to his detention for more than 900 days, all without charging him, is one of the principle abuses in the case. The audience can't possibly understand the abusive nature of the situation after having been misled by Gibney in this manner.

Source:
Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Suddenly, only two days after the release of the first batch of State Department cables, Interpol issued a demand for Assange's arrest for his failure to return to Sweden to answer questions about sex charges.
Footage of Julian Assange's lawyer Mark Stephens being interviewed.
WikiLeaks again gets wrong the name of Assange's former lawyer. His name is spelled Mark Stephens.
STOCK
Mark Stevens:
I'm really rather worried by the political motivations that appear to be behind this. Sweden was one of those lickspittle states which used its resources and its facilities for rendition flights.
Interviewer:
You think if he goes to Sweden he may be sent to the States?
Mark Stevens:
Certainly, my mind's very open about that.
Interviewer:
And you may fight it on that basis?
Mark Stevens:
Certainly.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
There were rumours of a sealed indictment against Assange. Secret subpoenas were served targeting WikiLeaks supporters. Under political pressure, VISA and MasterCard stopped processing donations to the website.
James Ball:
Visa and MasterCard will happily process payments for the Ku Klux Klan, for all kinds of organisations around the world and yet this one – with no charges, no warrants, no nothing – they've not only blocked it themselves, they won't let any intermediaries do it.
Footage of news reports about Cablegate and Julian Assange from early December 2010.
STOCK
Newsreader:
Meanwhile, WikiLeaks founder is still hiding from the police but today he did speak out online

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


WikiLeaks Twitter account:
Wikileaks strikes back. Cut us down and the stronger we become.
STOCK
Newsreader:
What happens to WikiLeaks if Julian Assange is arrested?
James Ball:
It carries on. This is huge material that's really important and everyone working on it is getting it out there.
Over the course of 2010, Julian Assange gave scores of media interviews, mostly around the time of each new publication from Manning's leaks.

But around the time of their biggest release (the U.S. State Department cables), Assange, who had a warrant out for his arrest, chose to stop giving interviews entirely. Indeed, during this period, he preferred to allow a recent hire—someone he denigrates today as merely "interning"—to give numerous televised interviews as a representative of WikiLeaks. This was so Assange didn't have to be interviewed himself. If this does not constitute "hiding" oneself, it's unclear what would.

Furthermore, WikiLeaks spokesperson Kristinn Hrafnsson, who was usually available for interviews, continued to be available while Assange avoided the public eye. With Assange's absence, WikiLeaks needed help managing the crush of media, which is why they turned to Ball. This seems to be the definition of "essentially filling in the gap."
Note: The full interviews from which Gibney selects clips of James Ball talking to the media tell a different story. As James Ball makes a number of false statements in Gibney's documentary these are worth watching in full. In one with Fox TV, for example, Ball appears alongside Kristinn Hrafnsson (as he usually did), who is introduced as "WikiLeaks spokesman" while Ball is described as "a journalist working with WikiLeaks". James Ball never "essentially filled in" as "WikiLeaks' principal spokesperson".

James Ball:
WikiLeaks' principal spokesperson has always been Julian but with Julian in hiding, I essentially filled in the gap.
James Ball's statement is clearly in reference to the media—he is talking about representing WikiLeaks in televised interviews after all. He makes no implication that by "in hiding" he means Assange was ducking government officials of any country. By pretending this is the implication, WikiLeaks is simply misleading the reader.
At 2.45 mins in, Mark Stephens explains that Julian Assange is not in hiding: "the police know how to get in touch with him, the Swedish prosecutor knows how to get hold of him, so everybody knows where he is - except the media." It is therefore false and misleading for James Ball to suggest that Julian Assange was "in hiding".


The inclusion of this note is puzzling. It has nothing at all to do with James Ball's statement, nor does it have to do with this part of the film at all.

Despite this being the case, it is interesting to note that WikiLeaks is pulling a fast one on the reader. They say that "Ball refutes the suggest that WikiLeaks has put anyone in harm's way," then include a quote from Ball about the State Department cables and the Iraq War Logs. As we note earlier, WikiLeaks's redaction practices changed dramatically over 2010, as they learned the moral and political value of taking redactions seriously.

Indeed, in the film we make the same point as WikiLeaks about the handling of the State Department cables and the Iraq War Logs. After our discussion of Assange's failures to take redactions seriously enough with the Afghan War Logs, we note the changes in their "harm minimization procedures" as we cover each subsequent release. In the section on the Iraq War Logs, we note:
Narrator: The next big releases were the Iraq War Logs. This time WikiLeaks had worked with volunteers to devise a computer program to solve the redaction problems.
For the State Department cables, we say:
Narrator: On November 28th, 2010, WikiLeaks and its media partners began to publish a small fraction—carefully redacted—of the State Department cables supplied by Bradley Manning.
The fact that WikiLeaks's redaction practice differed so much with each release of material is an implicit admission of failure in regard to the Afghan War Logs release. (Of course, there was a failure with the Iraq War Logs as well: the automated redacting process left many of the documents nearly unreadable.)
Starting at 8.30mins, Ball refutes the suggestion that WikiLeaks has put anyone in harm's way: "We have correspondents from all over – you know, the New York Times Chinese correspondent, the Guardian Chinese correspondent – checking those cables that are published to see what they're like. Of course WikiLeaks takes redactions seriously. It was said on the Iraq War Logs that there were 300 names going to be in them by the Department of Defense. When they were actually published, of course, the whole things were published redacted and safe."

Source:
Click here.


See above about being "in hiding."

Note the attempt to diminish Ball's credibility by saying that he had been "interning...for 10 days at this date." First, he had been working on WikiLeaks material for months, as the film earlier makes clear; he had only recently been hired by WikiLeaks. Moreover, Ball was employed as a full-time member of the organization with the title "Journalist." It would have been an interesting internship indeed if one's responsibilities included representing the organization in televised interviews with media outlets around the world.
Note: In this December 3, 2010 interview with ABC Lateline, James Ball makes the following remarks about Julian Assange being 'in hiding' and his own relationship to WikiLeaks:
"He said it to me on the way to talk to you today"
"Well, I'm a freelancer working for them, for me it's kind of perhaps a little bit of an outside view but from what I've seen working with them this week..." [Ball had been interning at WikiLeaks for 10 days at this date];

Very few people (and we are certainly not among them) contest the idea that Julian Assange was and is important to the WikiLeaks organization. It is not clear what this has to do with the fact that he was in hiding from the media.
Footage of James Ball giving media interview.
STOCK
Journalist:
Well, where is Julian Assange, this mythic character?
James Ball:
I honestly can't remember where I last saw him.
James Ball:
I ended up doing a lot of television, looking pretty much about 16. You really did feel a David and Goliath moment.
Footage of James Ball giving media interview.
STOCK
Journalist:
Do you consider your organisation and your website to be under attack?
James Ball:
Yes, all week it's been under attack.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
The WikiLeaks website came under cyber attack and kept falling offline. In response, WikiLeaks supporters began to mirror the site on over 1,000 servers around the globe. It was impossible to remove WikiLeaks from the internet.
James Ball:
The internet in the digital era lets governments get more information and more power and more communication than they ever have before. But it lets citizens do the same. Governments are more powerful and more vulnerable at exactly the same time. The fight on our hands is who gets to control the internet, who gets to control information?
Footage of an Anonymous video message.
STOCK
Anonymous:
Hello, this is a classified message from Anonymous. After numerous attacks on the truth-telling platform of WikiLeaks, including the shutdown of its financing, we have already made it very clear that we will fight for freedom of speech and a free press. We are Anonymous. We are legion. We do not forgive. We do not forget.
WikiLeaks adds this annotation as if in disagreement. In fact, as we note mere moments earlier in the film, the financial blockade against WikiLeaks by the major payment processors was an outrageous act against an organization involved in publishing news. As our film puts it:

Narrator: There were rumors of a sealed indictment against Assange. Secret subpoenas were served targeting WikiLeaks supporters. Under political pressure, VISA and MasterCard stopped processing donations to the website.

James Ball: Visa and MasterCard will happily process payments for the Ku Klux Klan, for all kinds of organizations around the world and yet this one—with no charges, no warrants, no nothing—they've not only blocked it themselves, they won't let any intermediaries do it.

We agree with WikiLeaks that Visa and MasterCard, among others, should not discriminate against a news organization whose views they disagree with—especially when the organization has never had a single charge brought against them.
Note: In fact, thousands of people, of all ages, took part in a popular online protest against the blockade. In response the FBI and Scotland Yard conducted nearly 100 police raids. There are more than a dozen ongoing trials as a result. A number of young people have already been unjustly imprisoned. The European Parliament has proposed legislation to stop the blockade. WikiLeaks has brought a number of victorious court actions against the blockade. All verdicts have found in WikiLeaks' favour. Visa's designated contractor has been ordered to reopen payments as a result. However, a new blockade will start on July 1, 2013 as Visa believes it has found a way to subvert the court order. For two years the European Commission has been investigating a possible prosecution against Visa and MasterCard over the issue.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In response to the financial blockade on WikiLeaks, the hacker collective Anonymous launched cyberattacks, taking down the websites of Visa, MasterCard and PayPal.
Footage of protesters outside of court hearing.
This agrees with what we say in our film, though the emphasis differs. This is another comment that seems to be more film criticism than fact-checking. Obviously, if WikiLeaks had made the film, they would have chosen to tell the story differently.
Note: Julian Assange voluntarily attended a London police station for arrest by appointment and was immediately imprisoned. He was held without charge, in the highest security unit of Wandsworth prison. After appeals he was eventually released into house arrest and an electronic monitoring device was strapped to his leg. After 552 days he applied for political asylum.

Source:
: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here, and go to para 30-38.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
One week after the arrest warrant was issued, Assange surrendered to police in London. Deemed a flight risk, he was ordered held in jail pending a bail hearing.
Footage of Mark Stephens speaking to the media outside Westminster magistrates court.
Mark Stevens:
Many people believe Mr Assange to be innocent and many people believe that this prosecution is politically motivated.
Actually, WikiLeaks beat the Pentagon to the punch.

Hours before those tweets went out, Assange was already spinning a conspiratorial tale. He tweeted about the Sweden case:
We were warned to expect "dirty tricks". Now we have the first one...
Other tweets followed with similar insinuations.

That aside, we don't disagree with a basic point underlying WikiLeaks's annotation: they weren't the only people confused about the Sweden case.
Note: The two issues were inextricably linked from the beginning – by the Pentagon. As soon as news there was an arrest warrant for Julian Assange became global on August 21, 2010 the Pentagon immediately launched an aggressive social media smear campaign using official US Army twitter accounts.
Sources:
Click here, here, here, here and here.

Note: US Defense Secretary Robert Gates told CBS News that Julian Assange's arrest in London "sounds like good news to me".

Source:
Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Assange’s arrest had become a mythic moment – but what was really going on? Was Sweden acting as an agent of the United States? Would extradition to Sweden mean a one-way ticket to Guantanamo? Or had the mission of WikiLeaks become confused with the private matter between one man and two women?
Interview with Anna disguised in a wig and make-up, using dark lighting.
It's highly unfortunate that WikiLeaks would object to the fact that we obscured the victim of an alleged sexual crime at her request, particularly someone who has already been the recipient of death threats and threats of sexual violence. Anna does not have so high a public profile that she should be publicly exposed any more than she already has been for her history with Assange. Certainly we were not going to be responsible for a single additional person knowing what she looks like against her wishes. The fact that WikiLeaks would call this care on our part "manipulative" is appalling, and perhaps telling.
Note: Manipulative framing. Anna has a high public profile and ran for office in the last national election. She is the Political and Press Secretary of a major section of the Social Democrats--the largest political party in Sweden. The Social Democrats have ruled Sweden for the majority of the last 80 years.
Alex Gibney:
Talk about why we're altering your appearance and filming you in this way?
Anna:
The reason I felt that it was important to be obscured is mainly because of all the threats I've received. And I know that different media have published my face without my consent and other online communities started doing, had wild speculations about who I was and who the other girl was. I feel that the less my face is shown and the less people can recognize me, the safer I will be.
Both offered assistance to WikiLeaks, and help from both was accepted on a non-paid basis. The reader can decide for themselves whether they were "volunteering."
Note: A commonplace falsehood is that the two Swedish women were WikiLeaks volunteers, repeated here carelessly by Alex Gibney. Neither individual had anything to do with WikiLeaks.

Anna helped organise the seminar on behalf of the Social Democrats.

Source:
Click here.
Translation: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Anna has been advised not to talk about any of the details of her sexual encounter with Assange until the legal case has been resolved but there are a few facts on which everyone agrees. An organiser for a WikiLeaks seminar in Stockholm, Anna invited Julian to stay in her apartment while she was out of town, then she decided to come back early. The following day at the seminar Julian was approached by another WikiLeaks volunteer, her name was Sofia.
Donald Bostrom:
Sofia wanted to see Julian, wanted to touch Julian, wanted to be close to Julian and, honestly, I think he was a rock star and he was picking the fruit.
Cut to footage of Julian Assange.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
Truth is the first casualty of war.
We do not "slyly" imply anything to do with HIV or any other sexually-transmitted disease. There are in fact two major points at issue when it comes to the matter of HIV:

1. At this point in the film, we report the fact that the women were concerned about the possibility of HIV. That is why they wanted Assange to take a test. As Bostrom said to police in the interview WikiLeaks recommends above:
And so she goes there and follows along with Sofia. And we ring a few times back and forth, we send SMS messages a bit about this. And I ring as well and contact Julian a few times. Uh, they want Julian to test himself for HIV, uh, otherwise they're going to file a complaint.
2. Later in the film we note that Assange's refusal to take a test meant that no one knew whether he did in fact have a disease. For the police, this opened the possibility that a crime may have taken place, and that an investigation should at least be opened. A senior public prosecutor in Sweden confirmed to us that under Swedish law a person who has sex with the intent of giving someone else a disease can be prosecuted for gross assault.

Also relevant: the senior prosecutor confirmed as well that someone who pretends to use sexual protection while not actually using it can be prosecuted for sexual molestation, regardless of whether they have a transmittable disease.


As a side note to WikiLeaks indignant criticisms over mentions of HIV in the film, it's actually WikiLeaks who's made promoted problematic, and tasteless, allegations about public personalities testing positive for HIV.
Note: There is no allegation that Julian Assange has HIV. Yet over the rest of the film, Gibney slyly tries to give the viewer the impression that he might.

Donald Bostrom:
One week after the seminar Anna called me and said: "Donald, I was very proud to have the hottest man on the planet in my apartment, in my bed even, but then it happened something I didn’t like – he tore the condom and I feel very uncomfortable about it." And then she told me that Sofia called her about the same thing. She was very concerned if she is pregnant or catch HIV or something because Julian had sex with her without a condom. They said if Julian take a HIV test, we won't go to the police.
This is a striking manipulation of Anna's statement in order to rebut something we don't actually say. There is no implication whatsoever—by the film or Anna—that Julian Assange was responsible for the identities of the two women becoming known. Anna simply says that she didn't want it in the papers—regardless of whether reports included her name. This reveals an interest not only for herself, but for everyone involved.

As Donald Bostrom put it in the police interview WikiLeaks recommends above:
Based on Anna's story, when she rings me and says we had sex and this happened so she didn't at all imply she's been the victim of sexual assault. In other words she doesn't even want to go to the police. But, she expresses it like I want, I'll go along with, I promised Sofia I'd go along with her for support. Not that she had any business with the police herself. And so my impression is that she didn't experience anything serious but was mostly angry. As in don't fucking break the condoms but not that it was an assault.
Note: Alex Gibney falsely implies that it is Julian Assange's fault that the identities of the two women became known.

Anna's name became public after the Swedish police leaked her name by mistake when redacted copies of the police report were obtained by the press under Sweden's Freedom of Information laws. Anna's name was not removed from the document header (an error by the Swedish authorities). Swedish police unlawfully released Assange's name to the Swedish right-wing tabloid Expressen, which is what made the story public in the first place.

The New York Times was the first to publish Anna's name when it republished her previously anonymous interview from August 21, 2010.

Source:
Click here.
Source:
Click here.
Anna:
I tried actually to tell his friends that we can get this over with fast and with no fuss because I really didn't want this to be in the papers. But he chose to make a big deal out of it.
Assange did not take the test despite repeated requests that he do so. The quotations that WikiLeaks chooses, particularly the first, support Davies's account. As Bostrom puts it in his police interview:
And we ring a few times back and forth, we send SMS messages a bit about this. And I ring as well and contact Julian a few times. Uh, they want Julian to test himself for HIV, uh, otherwise they're going to file a complaint. That's how they express it. Uh, they don't want to speak with Julian themselves. But Julian's talking to Sofia he says and he thinks things are blown out of proportion. But I tell Julian that, the girls want you to test yourself and if you do it, they won't press charges but if you don't, they'll press charges. So I just conveyed that, I was the messenger. I didn't have any of my own, uh, and that's the way it is.
Note: It is not true that Julian Assange refused to have a HIV test, as is borne out by three witness statements to police:

Johannes Wahlstrom reports phoning Julian Assange on the morning of Friday August 20, who said: "So, no but I, I can test myself but I don't want to be blackmailed to test myself. Um... Because they say that either they go to the police, or, Sofia, that she either goes to the police or so I test myself. So I can give, I can give her that but I'd rather do it out of, out of, uh goodwill like rather than it's a blackmailing situation."

Source: Johann Wahlstrom police statement:
Click here.

Donald Bostrom told police: "And then I ring Julian again and then he says, no but now I've had a long conversation with Sofia. He says on Friday. And she, (inaudible) no worries, that's to say she's not going to the police and that was, they were fully in agreement and... I say, is it really true I say because Anna, when I spoke with Anna right now I got a completely different impression, they're on their way to the police (inaudible). No he says, she, we were in complete agreement, it was very friendly, very nice."

Source: Donald Bostrom police statement:
Click here.

On August 30, 2010 Julian Assange told police: "We can always continue if it's needed? But the main thing is that I and others got to hear a lot of unbelievable lies. And got to hear I was to meet Sonia [Sofia] on Saturday afternoon to discuss the matter. Anna had no accusations and no one had any intention of going to the police and so forth. That's how I expected things to remain until I heard the news in Expressen."

Source: Julian Assange police statement:
Click here.

Julian Assange's "Unauthorized Autobiography", which has not been approved by Assange, recounts the following: "[SW] said she wanted me to come down immediately and have an STD test. I said I couldn't that day, I was dealing with heavy stuff, but I'd come the next day, and she said that was fine. She then asked me if I'd called her off my own bat, or because I'd been speaking to [AA]? It just became too ludicrous at this point. Donald was ringing me again and again, saying that [AA] was trying to look out for me with this [SW] situation, and I was saying, 'No, it's fine, I've spoken to [SW] and we're meeting tomorrow'."

Source:
Julian Assange, The Unauthorized Autobiography, p 234-5 Click here.

Nick Davies:
Julian had repeatedly refused to have the test. When he had finally changed his mind and agreed to it, it was too late. By that time the women had already got too frustrated and too angry with Julian’s refusals and they'd gone to the police.
This may be telling, but Assange clearly does not understand what "too late" means here. It is obviously not in reference to the time of day, but to Assange's intransigence about taking a test. After ignoring the requests over the course of the week, he finally agreed to do so on Friday morning, as he admits here. But obviously he had already worn out the women's patience.
Note: It is not true that it was too late when Julian Assange agreed to do a HIV test. His conversation with Sofia took place late Friday morning, August 20th, while Sofia was at a Stockholm hospital clinic. By 2pm the two women were at the police station.

Source: Police Memo, Diary No. 0201-K246336-10, dated 22-08-2010
Click here and go to p. 14.

A clip from John Humphrys' December 2010 interview with Julian Assange.
This may be selective, but it is in no way out of context. The context is already provided by the immediately preceding statements in the film. Moreover, nothing in the additional context provided by WikiLeaks conflicts with what the film reports. Nor does it alter the fact that Assange believes it is "ridiculous" for someone to be so concerned about contracting a sexually-transmitted disease that they would go to the police. See here for more on the relevance of HIV to the police's case.
Note: Selective editing. Assange actually begins the statement, which is from a BBC interview, with "What they say is that..". Restoring the context we have:
[T]he suggestion is that they went to the police for advice and they did not want to make a complaint. What they say is that they found out that they were mutual lovers of mine and they had unprotected sex and they got into a tizzy about whether there was a possibility of sexually transmitted diseases. A ridiculous thing to go to the police about.
Source: Click here.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
They found out that they were mutual lovers of mine, they had unprotected sex, and they got into a tizzy about whether there was a possibility of sexually transmitted diseases. A ridiculous thing to go to the police about.
At no point does the film suggest that Assange has HIV or that people believe Assange has HIV. Instead we report that the women requested he have a test. A call for a test doesn’t equal a positive result. There are several relevant issues related to the disease that make it pertinent however—not least that the women were fearful of contracting it. This is covered in detail above.
Note: No one alleges that Assange has HIV or has ever had HIV. Gibney, however, through innuendo alone, tries to manipulate the viewer into believing the contrary.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
When the women went to the police to try to force Assange to take a HIV test, their testimony raised questions about possible criminal charges. The police, on their own, decided to investigate further. The refusal to use a condom took centre stage: if Assange had HIV and knew it, it could be a case for assault.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Excerpt from Swedish police report:
"...Assange...[was] firmly holding [Anna's] arms and prying her legs open..."

"Anna is convinced that Assange broke the condom..."

"...and...continued having sex with a subsequent ejaculation."
We are not the first people to report that Assange has four children. It was confirmed to us by former friends and colleagues. In fact, even Donald Bostrom discusses it in his interview with Swedish police, which WikiLeaks recommends to the reader above:
Uh, but I know very very, very little but I know that he, he has, he isn't married. And he has, I think at least four children I think.
Contrary to what Assange suggests, the film goes to great lengths to illustrate the unjust and dangerous threats made towards Assange by WikiLeaks critics.
Similarly, Gibney's so-called "fact" about Assange's children is simply false. It is malicious and repeated here without citation, in a documentary supposedly about WikiLeaks. What Gibney does not say, and is a public fact, is that Mr. Assange's mother and eldest son both received death threats from the Republican right, and had to move and change their names.

Note: Click here.
Note: Click here.
Note: Click here.
Note: Click here.
Note: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
When the women went to the police to try to force Assange to take a HIV test, their testimony raised questions about possible criminal charges. The police, on their own, decided to investigate further. The refusal to use a condom took centre stage: if Assange had HIV and knew it, it could be a case for assault. The testimony of the women raised another issue: did he refuse to use a condom because he wanted to make the women pregnant? Some pointed to the fact he had already fathered four children with different women around the world.
It is entirely within WikiLeaks's right to protest whether Overton has enough knowledge to comment on Assange's personal life. It is foolish to note that it is "selective editing" when WikiLeaks has no access to our interview with Overton, nor the questions asked. Overton's views, regardless of WikiLeaks's claims to their validity, were not manipulated.
Note: Selective editing. Iain Overton first met Julian Assange in 2010 and knows nothing of Assange's personal life. Here, Gibney has pushed Overton into rather silly speculation on matters he knows nothing about, and then edited out the question to hide this fact.

Iain Overton:
This is a man who is elusive, he's always flying around the place, he doesn't have any roots and he's got a number of kids. There may be some sort of primary impulse in him to want to reproduce, to want to have some sort of bedrock in his life. You know, this is the ultimate digital man and actually you can't just live in a digital world.
Overton was the initial managing editor of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (BIJ), an award-winning British news organization which Assange chose as a partner in reporting on the Iraq War Logs. Overton did in fact resign from BIJ after the organization was involved in the production of a report erroneously claiming that a senior British politician was engaging in pedophilia. Overton was not primarily responsible for the report, but took responsibility for his organization's mistake.

Despite BIJ's previous strong work as WikiLeaks's partner in research on the War Logs, WikiLeaks is happy to imply that Overton has a habit of making "false sexual allegations."
Overton resigned as editor of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism on November 12, 2012 after his involvement in false sexual accusations led to a victorious libel action.

Source: Click here.


Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Excerpt from Swedish police report:
"...[Sofia] was woken by the feeling of [Assange] penetrating her."

"He was already inside of her and she let him continue."

"She immediately asked 'Are you wearing anything' and he replied, 'You.'"
Another clip from old footage of Julian Assange.
WikiLeaks has from the very beginning played a double-game of trying to paint a picture of conspiracy while denying that they are doing so. This statement by Assange is simply a clearer view of it than most. Nothing about the additional context provided by WikiLeaks changes that. When given an opportunity by the BBC to clarify his views on the Swedish case, Assange chose to prevaricate.
Note: Selective editing. Gibney spins a careful statement by Assange to make it look as if it is something to be debunked. When context is restored, the meaning is clearly the opposite to that insinuated by Gibney
Q: Did you have sex with those women?

JA: It's a matter of public record as far as the courts are concerned but I am not going to be exposing other people's private lives or my own more than is absolutely necessary. That is not what a gentleman does, that why I have also never criticised these women. We don't know precisely what pressures they have been under, exactly. There are powerful interests that have incentives to promote these smears. That doesn't mean that they got in there in the very beginning and fabricated them.

Q: So you're not suggesting that this was a honey-trap? That you were somehow set up by the Americans, by the CIA? You don't buy into that idea because your lawyer's suggested that that's the case.

JA: He says that he was misquoted. I have never said that this is a honey-trap.

Q: You don't believe it?

JA: I have never said that this is not a honey-trap. I'm not accusing anyone until I have proof.

Q: Do you believe it is possible?

JA: That's not how I operate as a journalist because almost everything is possible.
Source: Click here.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
I have never said that this is a honeytrap. I have never said that it is not a honeytrap.
Two days after the women went to police after warning Assange that they would, Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet published the following exchange:

Aftonbladet: Two women claims that you committed sex crimes against them. Comments?

Assange: I can't comment on it. There aren't any concrete reports to consider.

Aftonbladet: Did you have sex with them?

Assange: They're anonymous in the press. I have no idea who they are.

As documented at length above, Assange was in close touch with the women and was entirely aware that they had gone to the police to address their claims of sexual misbehavior. To say that he did not know who the women were is entirely disingenuous. It is a flimsy excuse for his erroneous statements in the days following the initial issuing of a warrant.
Note: Julian Assange found out through the internet he was 'wanted for rape' - he could not know (since he is innocent) who would be accusing him of that. Even the prosecution claims that they did not go to the police to file complaints but to ask for advice about HIV tests. When the press came out with stories of 'rape' he couldn't have known who was behind it. He couldn't have imagined that a HIV test would turn into an arrest warrant for 'rape'. Source: Click here.
Anna:
He was claiming that he didn't know who we were and that's not true. He knew very well who we were and he knew we were going to the police before we went.
Another clip from an old Julian Assange interview.
The key part from WikiLeaks's excerpt:
We don't know precisely what pressures [the women] have been under, exactly. There are powerful interests that have incentives to promote these smears. That doesn't mean that they got in there in the very beginning and fabricated them.
Unfortunately, WikiLeaks then excludes Assange's prevarication about honey traps, which immediately follows this statement.

As mentioned above, Assange announced that the women's complaints were part of a "dirty tricks" campaign. Then he refused to clarify the situation when given the opportunity.
Note: Selective editing. Gibney changes a careful statement by Assange to make it look as if it is something to be debunked. When context is restored, the meaning is clearly the opposite to that insinuated by Gibney:
Q: No? You deny them completely? But did you have sex with the women?

JA: We know there is all sorts of nonsense in the tabloid press and all sorts of spin conducted for all sorts of reasons.

Q: But you haven't denied having sex with those women?

JA: No, I haven't denied that.

Q: So you did have sex with those women?

JA: I have always tried in this case and in my other dealings to be a private person and to not speak about matters that are private.

Q: This is now public. So I'm asking you the question. Did you have sex with those women?

JA: It's a matter of public record as far as the courts are concerned but I am not going to be exposing other people's private lives or my own more than is absolutely necessary. That is not what a gentleman does, that why I have also never criticised these women. We don't know precisely what pressures they have been under, exactly. There are powerful interests that have incentives to promote these smears. That doesn't mean that they got in there in the very beginning and fabricated them.
Source: Click here.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
There are powerful interests that have incentives to promote these smears.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


WikiLeaks Twitter account:
We were warned to expect "dirty tricks". How we have the first one: http://bit.ly/bv5ku9
Nick Davies comment is exactly correct, as all of the materials WikiLeaks omitted from this section make clear.
Note: Nick Davies' comment is false as is shown in the note immediately above.


Nick Davies:
What Julian did was to start the little snowball rolling down the hill, that this was some kind of conspiracy – and that was all he had to do at that stage – it rolled and it picked up speed.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Newspaper headline quoting Assange:
"It Was An Outrage"

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Newspaper headline quoting Assange:
"I've been warned about sex traps!"

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Newspaper headline next to picture of Assange:
Was he lured into a Sex Trap?
Anna:
A lot of rumours were made up and pure fantasies. The wildest story of all was that I was a CIA agent and I was like, I couldn't even believe that anyone would believe such a weird story.
Donald Bostrom:
From outside, I can understand, it must be a conspiracy. But I was in the middle of this all. Sorry to say, it was not two girls in short skirts sent in from CIA, whatever. There was just ordinary nice girls admiring Julian and WikiLeaks.
Alex Gibney:
You've been very careful not to say anything, why?
WikiLeaks has maliciously twisted the women's honesty about the nuances of their allegations into appearing as if they have retracted any claims against Assange. This is not the case. As Anna said to us, this is a legal case that should be adjudicated in a Swedish courtroom. Assange disagrees.
Note: Anna made a very important public announcement after this interview. On 22 April 2013 she tweeted that she had "not been raped". The other women, Sofia, has stated that she also had not been raped and that the police had "railroaded" her and "made up the charges (sic)".

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.

Anna:
Because this is a legal case and not a public debate.
This is partly false. Anna obviously spoke directly to us. This was indeed the first time she had spoken to the press since August 2010 however.

Attorneys on both sides of the case have given many interviews. Assange's lawyers, too, have not been shy of cameras. This is understandable, given the high-profile nature of the case and the persistent coverage on the part of the media.
Anna has not spoken directly to the press directly since 21 August 2010 (the day after the police complaint). Her counsel, the politician/lawyer Claes Borgstrom, however, appeared continuously in Swedish and international media to push his position on the preliminary investigation against Julian Assange. His media appearances were especially intense in the month leading up to the national elections for which he ran (19 September 2010).

Borgstrom has billed 80 hours for Assange-related media appearances, although he estimated that the amount was greater. This led to a civil rights group filing a complaint against Borgstrom to the Bar Association's discipline commission in June 2012.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
Footage of Assange supporters protesting outside court. Chants: "Freedom. Shame on you."
Ball has stated that the conversation in question occurred in early December, when he was present and working full-time for the organization. This is another case where WikiLeaks pretends to dispute a claim, but instead simply refers to something we are not discussing. For an earlier instance of this, see here.

WikiLeaks makes other misleading and erroneous claims here. James Ball started working on WikiLeaks materials months earlier with the Iraq War Logs. Indeed, WikiLeaks cites his knowledge of their War Log redaction practices above, but here tries to limit his involvement with the organization where it is not in their interest.

The last day that Ball did work for the WikiLeaks organization was in fact February 4, 2011, when he helped the Telegraph prepare for their impending publication of articles on the State Department cables. As Ball was starting with the Guardian just three days after this date, WikiLeaks's willingness to use his help indicates that they did not in fact believe at the time that he was "selling out" the organization, as they would later assert. Indeed, WikiLeaks's attacks on Ball would only arise after he was willing to criticize the organization for mistakes he believed they had made.
Note: Ball was seconded to WikiLeaks as an intern for a short time during the Cablegate release. James Ball's first day at WikiLeaks was November 23, 2010 and his second last was December 15, 2010, with one further day visit on January 12, 2011. Ball is implying he was party to an alleged discussion at which he could not have been present.
James Ball:
The way Julian’s private affairs have been conflated with WikiLeaks I find quite troubling. There was at one point an effort to try and separate the two issues, That was reversed and the decision was made to push the two causes together, and so it just...
Alex Gibney:
How was that reversed? I mean, was there a meeting? Was there, or it just slid in that direction?
There are valid criticisms that can be made of how the prosecutor's office has handled the case. Some of the oddity of the case no doubt has to do with the fact that it is so high-profile—of course, Assange's fight has only attracted more attention to it.

Regardless, WikiLeaks again insinuates here that there is some conspiracy behind the case: "[the] case is not being handled in the normal way - but they can't say why." High profile cases are very rarely handled in a completely normal fashion. It does not make them conspiracies.
Note: It is admitted by the Swedish Prosecution Authority that Julian Assange's case is not being handled in the normal way - but they can't say why.

Source:
Click here.

There has been political interference in the case at the highest level, with the Swedish Prime Minister, Justice Minister, Foreign Minister and Prosecutor-General all weighing in with prejudicial public comments:

Source:
Click here.

Top Swedish jurists are highly critical of the way the case has been handled, believe questioning should take place in London and recognise the validity of Julian Assange's fears of being transited from Sweden to the US.

Source:
Click here.
Translation: Click here.
More: Click here.
James Ball:
Julian reversed it. Explicitly. He very much wanted what happened in Sweden to be seen as part of the transparency agenda - and it works.
Footage of Bradley Manning and Julian Assange protests denouncing Sweden and the politically motivated charges.
STOCK
Protester:
I'm here because the US government and the Swedish authorities are trying to gag the truth. These charges are completely politically motivated and have nothing whatsoever to do with the prosecution. It's a persecution and not a prosecution.
Nick Davies:
What is so extraordinary is the way in which the two women have been either completely forgotten as though they had no rights here at all, or caricatured, villified.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Web post by Assange supporter with pictures of Anna and Sofia:
Attention SATAN: Here are two more LYING BITCHES for you to have fun torturing in HELL!
Anna:
I've been through 2 years of different kinds of abuses: people coming to my house, people threatening or questioning or following my friends and family. Some death threats but mostly sexual threats that I deserve to get raped.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Web post by Assange supporter with pictures of Anna and Sofia:
LIAR!
LIAR!

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Web post by Assange supporter with picture of Anna:
"I'll accuse any man of rape for just $99.95!"

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Web post by Assange supporter with pictures of Assange, Anna, and Sofia:
[With photo of Assange]
Crusader for TRUTH

[With photos of Anna and Sofia]
whore!
slut!

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Web post by Assange supporter with picture of Anna:
Slut of the Year

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Web post by Assange supporter with picture of Anna with target drawn over face:
ENABLER
Anna [redacted]
...well-financed right wing CIA Shill in Sweden
Verdict: Guilty
Anna:
A lot of twitter accounts and blogs that are very close to WikiLeaks have been publishing things that I know Julian know is not true. They admire him very much and he could have easily stopped that.





Given the enormous accumulation of subtle—and not so subtle—falsehoods from WikiLeaks in this very transcript, the reader can make their own decision as to the validity of Davies's assertion.
Note: This is a simple rhetorical trick by Davies. Davies tries to claim Assange lies but avoids giving any details. If details were given, the claim could be refuted.
Nick Davies:
There was an enormous amount of hype and misinformation and bullshit that came out of Julian Assange's supporters, and the more that people realise that they were lied to by Julian, the less moral and political authority he has. He's supposed to be about the truth.
We've already detailed Nick Davies's credentials as one of the finest journalists in Britain.
What Alex Gibney does not tell his viewers is that a 68-page version of the police investigation file was leaked to Nick Davies, on the basis of which Davies wrote a highly skewed and prejudicial article "10 Days in Sweden", published in the Guardian on December 17, 2010. When the full police protocol leaked to the internet in February 2011 people could see for themselves how biased and one-sided Nick Davies' article had been and how much information he had omitted. Hence, for Nick Davies there is an economic and reputational cost to the truth coming out and he is highly motivated to maintain his own skewed version of events.

Irrelevant.

Note: Julian Assange, in conversation with Eric Schmitt, June 23, 2011:
"Greg Mitchell wrote a book about the mainstream media, So Wrong For So Long. And that's basically it. That, yes, we have these heroic moments with Watergate and Bernstein and so on, but, come on, actually it's never been very good, it's always been very bad and these fine journalists are an exception to the rule. And especially when you are involved in something yourself and you know every facet of it and you look to see what is reported by it in the mainstream press, and you can see naked lies after naked lies. You know that the journalist knows it's a lie, it is not a simple mistake, and then simple mistakes, and then people repeating lies, and so on, that actually the condition of the mainstream press nowadays is so appalling I don't think it can be reformed. I don't think that is possible. I think it has to be eliminated, and replaced with something that is better."
Source:
Click here.

Footage of WikiLeaks protests, with protesters chanting "We want free speech, hands off WikiLeaks. Free Julian Assange."
Footage from a fundraising 'dinner with Julian Assange' video from February 2011.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
Good evening and welcome to this fundraising dinner for freedom of speech. While I cannot be with you in person this evening because I am under house arrest, I can at least be with you in spirit.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
After nine days Assange was released from prison, his supporters putting up over $300,000 in bail. While Julian appealed his extradition to Sweden, a local journalist named Vaughan Smith offered Julian a place to stay.
Vaughan Smith:
Ellingham Hall is 125 miles north-east of London. It's a house that's been in my family for 250 years or so. We've got livestock, we've got cattle, we've got sheep, we’ve got game obviously – pheasant, partridge - we shoot them and eat them.
Cut to old footage of Julian Assange on Ellingham Hall farm.
James Ball:
Ellingham Hall is a lovely place but it's right in the middle of nowhere and we've packed it with about 15 to 20 people. It was some sort of cross between Big Brother and a spy thriller. Part of Vaughan’s plan to keep things civilized was setting strict rules around meals, and so Vaughan's very lovely housekeeper would cook for us 3 times a day. And even port served at dinner – which was passed to the left, of course.
More footage of Julian Assange in the fundraising dinner video.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
But now we are in a position where we are being most aggressively censored by the Washington establishment of the United States.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
To raise money for his legal defence, Assange began selling a compelling package: dinner with Julian. In exchange for a donation, WikiLeaks would provide a link to a video of Julian to be played at home on a laptop placed on a table mat set for the absent hacker.
Another clip of Julian Assange in the fundraising video.
STOCK
Julian Assange:
And together we make the world into a place where all our dreams can play.
As anyone who clicks through the link can see, when one went to DinnerForFreeSpeech.com, the first options to donate in support of "free speech" were three different ways to give money to Julian Assange's sexual offense defense fund.

More to the point, the division between the JADF and WikiLeaks funds was not as clear as WikiLeaks makes it out to be. Over the course of our reporting, we obtained documents which indicated that Assange asked WikiLeaks employees to use WikiLeaks funds to pay for his sex allegations defense. This means the presentation on the "Dinner for Free Speech" website was in fact highly misleading.

This may not shock long-time observers of the organization. As critics pointed out, the transparency of WikiLeaks's funds-handling left much to be desired at the time. In August 2010, the Wall Street Journal noted in an article titled "How WikiLeaks Keeps Its Funding Secret":

In response [to international controversy], the site has established a complex system for collecting and disbursing its donations to obscure their origin and use, Mr. Assange said...

"It's very hard work to run an organization, let alone one that's constantly being spied upon and sued," Mr. Assange said in the interview. "Judicial decisions can have an effect on an organization's operation. … We can't have our cash flow constrained entirely," he said.

[Emphasis added]

For another example of criticism over the lack of financial transparency, see here.
Note: This is a deliberately false statement by James Ball. Alex Gibney does not challenge Ball on it. The facts are easy to find. The Julian Assange and Wikileaks Staff Legal Defense Fund (JADF) and the various means by which Wikileaks receives donations for its running costs are kept separate.

Donors to "Dinner for Freedom of Speech" were given a choice to donate to WikiLeaks or JADF, and this was made explicitly clear. The different donation bank details were clearly set out. There is no confusion for donors about where their money is going.

Source:
Click here.

The original 'Dinner For Free Speech' web page is still available, having been mirrored by the internet archive on February 10, 2011. It clearly indicates where donors can choose to donate to either the Defense Fund or to WikiLeaks, and also states unequivocally:
By pledging a donation on this day, no matter how large or small, you can help support Julian's defence fund, and/or contribute to WikiLeaks.

Source:
Click here.

James Ball:
This dinner for free speech was, in fact, a dinner for Julian’s sex offence defence fund. No one knows now whether money going to WikiLeaks is going to Julian or elsewhere.
This fundraising idea was organised in February 2011. James Ball's internship had expired by mid-January 2011 and he had no involvement in this initiative at all.

Source:
Click here.

The JADF is administered and audited by Derek Rothera & Co. The terms of the trust and trustees can be found here.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.


WikiLeaks has been under an arbitrary and unlawful financial embargo by Bank of America, VISA, MasterCard, PayPal and Western Union since December 7, 2010, cutting off ninety-five per cent of its funding.

Source:
Click here.

The blockade was declared unlawful by Icelandic Supreme Court.

Source: Click here.

Assange and WikiLeaks have an ongoing feud with several of their former partners, most prominently the Guardian and the New York Times. Both sides have valid criticisms and much of our film in fact shows the tensions between new and old media. Just a moment after this in the film, we make clear the harsh and unfair nature of the New York Times' attacks on WikiLeaks.
Note: The Guardian newspaper broke all three terms of its contract with WikiLeaks and conspired with the New York Times to cut WikiLeaks out and publish Cablegate without them, despite the obvious danger of doing so to WikiLeaks associates who were still in the United States at the time. Journalists from the third media partner Der Spiegel sided with WikiLeaks and refused to join the plot.

Source:
Click here.
Source:
Click here.
Source:
Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian's legal troubles made him more famous than ever, but they also intensified his differences with his former media partners. They defended his right to publish but began to turn on Assange himself.
Vaughan Smith:
I’ve been close enough to see the sort of, you know, the wasps around the jam here. He stirred the nest and they come to sting him perhaps rather more than he expected.
Footage of New York Times editor Bill Keller being asked a question at a conference. The adjectives used to describe Julian Assange in the following dialogue play in close up over the screen.
STOCK
Journalist:
In a January piece you described Assange as 'eccentric', 'elusive', 'manipulative', 'volatile', 'openly hostile', 'coy' and 'obviously a derelict, arrogant, thin-skinned, conspiratorial and oddly credulous' um, is that any way for a journalist to talk about his sources?
Footage of an old Bill Keller interview.
STOCK
Bill Keller:
He looked like a bag lady coming in. Sort of like a dingy, khaki sports coat, old tennis shoes, with socks that were kind of collapsing around his ankles and he clearly hadn't bathed in several days.
Mark Davis:
The New York Times – I mean, the hypocrisy of this act – they wanted the material, they were fully complicit in the publication of the material, but as soon as the heat came on they wanted to wash their hands.
Our director, Alex Gibney, also kept detailed notes of his conversations with Assange.

Assange did indeed say that the market rate for an interview with him was $1 million, implying that he wanted to be paid for an interview and that this was a starting point in negotiations. We made clear to Assange that we do not pay for interviews.

Assange then asked us to share any intel we had with him. Our director offered to help ascertain the progress of the U.S. investigation into Assange. Assange was more interested, however, in the idea of reading interview transcripts of old WikiLeaks colleagues so that he could see what they were saying about him. Again, we could not help him with the request, since we do not share our interview transcripts with other interviewees.

This was in fact not the first time that Assange had asked our team to spy on other interview subjects. He made the same request to our producer, Alexis Bloom. We found these to be very problematic requests for someone who was supposedly so concerned with source protection.

It should be noted here that we are actually not the only ones to encounter Assange's petty attempts at surveillance of his ex-colleagues. For example, Wired recently reported that Assange asked a young Manning supporter to steal a manuscript copy of Domscheit-Berg's book for him:

On this, [Manning supporter David House's] first visit with Assange, he was hoping to open a channel of communication between WikiLeaks and Manning supporters, and to try to secure a significant role for himself inside the secret-spilling organization.

Instead, he found Assange was mostly interested in talking about Domscheit-Berg’s betrayal of WikiLeaks.

“He had started to talk more and more about Daniel during those few days, telling anecdotes, and it was clear that it was bothering him,” House says. In front of the fireplace, Assange finally got to his point, House says. Assange wanted House “to protect the future of WikiLeaks by obtaining access to a ‘corpus of lies,’ or something like that,” House says.

In a follow-up conversation later, Assange got more explicit, House says.

“He wanted me, and in fact told me, to get to Berlin … and obtain access to Daniel Domscheit-Berg’s apartment and to get access to the manuscript of the book that was being published, and to take this manuscript with me back to the London so he could see it before it came out,” says House, publicly discussing his experience for the first time.

This sounds extremely similar to our director's encounter with Assange.

Finally, to say that we "failed to conduct an interview with WikiLeaks" is a semantic game. Our film focused on 2010. We interviewed many of WikiLeaks's important employees, volunteers, and colleagues from that year. We would have liked to have interviewed Assange, but his demands proved impossible. Because we did not interview him, and because we were not committed to a need to interview people who arrived at WikiLeaks at a later time, WikiLeaks says that we did not interview anyone "from the organization." This is misleading.

As Alex Gibney has noted in regard to his film about clerical sex abuse, "Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God," he did not obtain an interview with the Pope either. That "failure" did not detract from the film's credibility. Indeed, one week after the film aired on HBO, the Pope resigned.
Note: Julian Assange did not say the market rate for an interview with him was $1 million dollars and Alex Gibney did not decline. This section deliberately distorts the final, lengthy negotiation between Julian Assange and Alex Gibney regarding his and WikiLeaks' possible participation in the documentary, which at the time was unnamed.

WikiLeaks had already been approached by different productions and individuals. Gibney failed to conduct an interiew with WikiLeaks--for a documentary about Wikileaks. He now tries to shift blame by misreporting the negotiations. However WikiLeaks kept detailed notes of the conversation.

Assange first explained to Alex Gibney about his previous bad experiences with malicious projects, the most recent had been 'Secrets and Lies', which was the subject of an official complaint, and which had been secretly co-produced by The Guardian's David Leigh.

Source:
Click here.

Gibney said that documentary was "practically scripted by Leigh" in an email to WikiLeaks. Julian Assange explained that WikiLeaks was in a position where it may be more in its interest not to participate than to participate, as he did not want to lend credence to a project that potentially missed the big picture, did not accurately grasp the political dimension of the US investigation, misrepresented Manning, overplayed the Swedish investigation, and so on.

He explained to Gibney that four factors played a role in the decision whether or not to participate:
  1. Security: Raw footage of WikiLeaks work could find its way into the hands of the US Department of Justice. This could endanger WikiLeaks staff.
  2. Financing: WikiLeaks had previously received an offer of £800,000 for its cooperation in a British documentary project. WikiLeaks rejected the offer for security reasons. In the film and in interviews, Alex Gibney distorts this conversation by attempting to portray Julian Assange as greedy. Yet in reality Assange rejected these offers because these were not in the greater interest of the organisation, despite the fact that WikiLeaks had already been under an arbitrary financial blockade for a year when this negotiation took place.
  3. Information: Gibney told Julian Assange that he would be interviewing members of the US government for the WikiLeaks film. Assange detailed the different forms that the continuing US persecution of WikiLeaks and its allies had taken. Assange said WikiLeaks was interested in understanding the progress of the US investigation into itself and its sources. Any information that Gibney picked up about the matter in the course of his interviews might be of interest to WikiLeaks.
  4. Impact: In an email pitching the documentary to WikiLeaks from 10th of March 2011, Alex Gibney said "while you know that many docs will be made on this subject, I have a sufficient global reputation (oscar, oscar noms, worldwide fans) and such a substantial budget for production, worldwide distribution and promotion that my documentary will reach an audience that will dwarf the reach of all the other documentaries combined". Julian Assange explained that the impact of the documentary was potentially problematic.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
I tried over many months to get an on-camera interview with Assange. After meetings and emails, I was finally summoned to the Norfolk mansion for a 6-hour negotiation. But Julian wanted money. He said the market rate for an interview with him was $1 million. When I declined, he offered an alternative: perhaps I would spy in my other interviews and report back to him, but I couldn't do that either.

During his time under house arrest he'd become more secretive and paranoid. He railed against his enemies and I knew that he had tried to get all his followers to sign a non-disclosure agreement. The penalty for leaking: $19 million.
There is no "false imputation" in our film. As we mention above, Assange said that the market rate for an interview with him was $1 million and implied that this was a beginning to negotiations over a fee that he expected to be paid.

The New York Times incorrectly reported the words used in our film. Our director asked them to issue a correction and they did.
While Alex Gibney is happy to allow the false imputation Julian Assange demanded $1 million for an interview to remain in his film he is careful not to allow the same 'mistake' to appear in the film's pre-publicity material:
New York Times correction: December 21, 2012: “An article on Thursday about the coming documentary “We Steal Secrets” and other films about WikiLeaks and Julian Assange referred imprecisely to a comment that Alex Gibney, the maker of “We Steal Secrets,” says in the film about Mr. Assange’s demands for money in exchange for collaborating on it. While he says that he rejected the demands, and that the market rate for an interview was $1 million, he does not specifically say that he rejected a demand from Mr. Assange for a $1 million fee for an interview.”
Source: Click here.


We look forward to watching their films.

WikiLeaks has co-operated in other productions, including a film by the well respected Academy Award nominated film maker, Laura Poitras, which will be released later this year. Another film, co-produced with Ken Loach's 16 Films, will be released shortly.

WikiLeaks has concocted a fanciful story here, both to discredit our interviewee and to try to explain away the fact that they asked their staff to sign gag orders in January 2011. Ball's definitive account of the matter can be found here.

Note that Ball does not deny signing any agreement with WikiLeaks. He confirms that he signed an earlier NDA that protected WikiLeaks's data; i.e. the leaks themselves. It was the second agreement, the gag order intended to suppress speech, that he refused to sign.

It should be noted that WikiLeaks makes other incorrect statements here. For instance, their assertion in regard to Ball's relationship with MI5 is entirely fabricated.
Note: James Ball is lying. James Ball signed a non-disclosure agreement with WikiLeaks on November 23, 2010.

WikiLeaks uses non-disclosure agreements to help protect the safety of its sources, its staff and its upcoming publications from informants. The FBI and rival media organizations have previously bribed or pressured persons they believe to be close to WikiLeaks. James Ball understood this, and saw no irony in being asked by WikiLeaks to sign his NDA in November 2010.

WikiLeaks staff suspected Ball was passing information from WikiLeaks onto others: rival media organisations or government agencies. WikiLeaks discovered that Ball had told a colleague he had a job interview with the UK intelligence service MI5 and had interned at the UK Home Office. WikiLeaks also discovered Ball was attending secret meetings with the Guardian journalist David Leigh - his former college professor at City University, and a vocal opponent of WikiLeaks.

While Assange was in prison it was discovered that someone had accessed the Sunshine Press press contacts account using an email client, and had mirrored its archive. Ball had briefly been given access to the account. Documents from the account subsequently appeared in the Guardian. Physical documents went missing, and Ball's behaviour became erratic.

Therefore a second, special non-disclosure agreement was devised for Ball, to test his reaction. After being asked to sign it at WikiLeaks' Norfolk office, Ball became anxious and asked to postpone signing it while he considered it. He then left for London.

It later became obvious to WikiLeaks staff that, showing malicious forethought, Ball had stolen what he thought was WikiLeaks' copy of his original NDA (which would have given him both copies). However the document that James Ball stole was not WikiLeaks' copy of the agreement. Ball had left his NDA out on a desk and it had been filed for security reasons. He had stolen his own copy of the NDA. The other copy had already been removed to a secure location, and is still in WikiLeaks' possession.

Ball became unavailable for work, and stopped returning calls. He lied about his whereabouts, and invented reasons why he could not return, which were confirmed to be untrue by a mutual third party. After several weeks, it became clear that he had cashed in his favours to David Leigh, in return for which he was given a post at the Guardian and the first credit in David Leigh's book.

Ball pursued career advancement at the Guardian by placing himself at the service of The Guardian's institutional vendetta against WikiLeaks, publishing numerous deceitful attacks on WikiLeaks over the last two and a half years, all of which rely on heavily embellishing his role as a freelancer working as a junior intern at WikiLeaks.

During the short time he worked for WikiLeaks he insisted on being called "a journalist working with WikiLeaks" or "a freelancer working for them". Some time after leaving, Ball reimagined his role at WikiLeaks for career advantage, changing his title in order to misrepresent himself to others as a "former spokesperson." James Ball was never a spokesperson for WikiLeaks. Alex Gibney did not secure an interview with WikiLeaks' actual spokesperson, Kristinn Hrafnsson.

Ball has consistently maintained that he never signed the WikiLeaks NDA, and has felt secure enough to lie in print and on camera because he believed he had destroyed the evidence, having stolen the NDA.

Although he lies straight to camera in "We Steal Secrets" about the NDA, in January 2013 Ball admitted that he did sign the WikiLeaks NDA, after having been challenged about it by WikiLeaks lawyer Jennifer Robinson. In admitting this, he lied again, claiming that he had never denied signing a WikiLeaks NDA. The evidence to the contrary is in the film itself.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.
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Source: Click here. and go to p. 331.
James Ball:
I found this a little bit awkward - being asked by a transparency organisation to sign exactly the kind of document used to silence whistleblowers around the world. It seemed pretty troubling and so I refused.
Footage of Julian Assange.
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Julian Assange:
All organisations face two possible paths: they can be open, honest, just, or they can be closed, unjust, and therefore not successful.
Our director, Alex Gibney, has stated time and again that WikiLeaks is a news publisher, deserving of the full protections that a journalistic organization should receive. He has furthermore stated that he would be among the first to defend WikiLeaks and Assange were they charged under the Espionage Act.

WikiLeaks ignores this entirely. Instead, they attempt to obscure the film's actual presentation with exegetical chicanery.

Saying that the film "systematically omits mention or downplays the significance of" something is simply to say that Assange would made a different film. Anything the film does not comprehensively focus on could be said to have been "systematically" omitted. In reality, we cover reports about attacks and pressure on WikiLeaks and Julian Assange fairly, including but not limited to:
  • The Pentagon's manipulation of the media to undermine WikiLeaks
  • The rumor of a sealed indictment
  • The outrageous financial blockade by U.S. financial services companies
  • Death threats and calls for assassination
Any one of these might have been expanded upon—as with so many other details in this story. There is a limited amount of time in any film. We told the story differently than WikiLeaks would have, but we did not "systematically omit or downplay" anything that deserved inclusion.
Note: Throughout "We Steal Secrets," Gibney systematically omits mention or downplays the significance of the US attempt to prosecute WikiLeaks and Julian Assange.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Had the secret-leaker become the secret-keeper, more and more fond of mysteries? The biggest mystery of all was the role of the United States. Over two years after the first leak, no charges had been filed by the US. Assange claimed that the US was biding its time, waiting for him to go to Sweden, but there was no proof.

In fact, members of Assange's legal team admitted that it would be easier for the US to extradite Assange from Britain.
The unspecified "official accounts" is an Australian governmental source in Washington. It is not, as WikiLeaks implies, an official U.S. governmental source, let alone a member of the investigation.

Furthermore, we cover the U.S. overreactions to the publishing of the Manning leaks at length above. To this date, the U.S. government has (wisely, in our opinion) not attempted to bring Assange to the United States for prosecution.

Finally, the "unprecedented" quote is now nearly three years old. Frankly, it is unsurprising that the U.S. government would at the time be engaging in a massive investigation to understand exactly the what, how, and why of the largest leak of classified information in U.S. history. While we know the investigation has continued, and that its large scale was maintained for some time, there is no evidence that the U.S. has continued to devote anything close to the same amount of resources to investigating WikiLeaks as it did three years ago.
The film neglects to mention that the US investigation against WikiLeaks is, as official accounts describe, "unprecedented in its scale and nature".


As viewers of the film can plainly see, Sweden's extradition request is a valid one.
The film downplays the serious investigation and prosecution of Julian Assange in the US and what would happen to him were he extradited to the US. It does so to make the argument that Assange is in the Ecuadorean embassy to simply avoid going to Sweden. This is false: he sought asylum based on his concern about being extradited to the US, and Ecuador granted asylum on the basis of the evidence Assange presented.

The cases of Manning and Assange are clearly linked, as was made explicit in the course of the Manning proceedings with reference being made to the parallel DOJ investigation into Assange and WikiLeaks.

Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.


WikiLeaks says, "There is no 'mystery' about the roles of the US: there is an ongoing Grand Jury." Just a moment later, it says, "The grand jury is, by its nature, secret."

The secretive nature is precisely why there happens to be a very real mystery about the role of the U.S. As of March of this year, there was indeed a Grand Jury still impaneled in investigation of WikiLeaks. We do not know what they will do or when, thought it is clear to us that, as we have said, they should not charge WikiLeaks or Julian Assange for acting as publishers of news.
There is no “mystery” about the role of the US: there is an ongoing Grand Jury, which has been empanelled since September 2010. This was first confirmed by the US Department of Justice November 2010 and re-confirmed on 26 March 2013.

The grand jury is, by its nature, secret.

It's interesting that WikiLeaks would write that "It cannot be said that 'no charges' have been filed. It makes it difficult to understand why WikiLeaks would say nearly 200 times over the course of three years that Assange is being held "without charge."

WikiLeaks is trying to have its cake and eat it too. According to them, it can in fact be said that no charges have been filed—but only when they say it.

For the reader curious about the details: WikiLeaks says that Assange's asylum is about the U.S. legal process. Except when they're talking about him being held "without charge": in these instances, they're talking about when the Swedish legal process prefers charges. And when they want to go back and say that Assange may actually have charges already against him, they're talking again about the U.S. legal process.

WikiLeaks takes advantage of different legal jurisdictions not only to protect their right to publish, but also their right to offer extraordinarily slippery excuses.

Our usage is simple: No charges have been issued in Sweden, but they will be as soon as Assange goes to the country. There is a possibility that an indictment has been issued by the U.S., but if such a document exists, they have taken no steps to enforce it over the last three years. When we say that "no charges had been filed," we are talking about public actions taken by the U.S. Perhaps we could have spent more time on the question and been more precise, but our use of the language is consistent.
It cannot be said that “no charges” have been filed. The film-maker certainly does not know that: it is illegal to disclose whether or not an indictment exists. It is a common practice to issue sealed indictments. Charges would not be made public until Assange is in custody. A former high-level State Department official said in a once-confidential email (Stratfor) that there was such a sealed indictment.

Source: Click here.

Source: Click here.

The cases of Manning and Assange are clearly linked, as was made explicit in the course of the Manning proceedings with reference being made to the parallel DOJ investigation into Assange and WikiLeaks.

There is no proof that the U.S. is biding its time. There are scraps of evidence—primarily the opinion of one diplomat over two years ago in very different circumstances—which we considered and balanced among many other details in the case before reporting. But WikiLeaks's claims to the contrary, a few scraps of evidence do not constitute proof.

This is similar to their "point" made earlier about chromosomal DNA. WikiLeaks prefers to adjudicate matters in the media rather than in courts, where strict definitions of proof are required.
It cannot be said that there is “no proof that the US was biding its time”. The US ambassador to the UK said this on the BBC in February 2011: the US would wait to see what happened in Sweden. Discussions between the US and Sweden reported that the US would only extradite Assange after the Swedish case was disposed of.

Source: Click here.
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Source: Click here.


A clip from an interview with Baroness Helena Kennedy QC.

We had a specific question, which she answered. Whether she regrets her response now isn't relevant. We may not have used every part of the interview, and may not have selected the portions she would have chosen, but we did not change the meaning of what she said.
Note: Helena Kennedy has complained that her interview has been misleadingly edited by Gibney to remove the proper context of her remarks. She states that she "did not expect that he [Gibney] would fillet my interview" and also says "I regret thinking I could present a sensible perspective".

Source:
Click here.
Helena Kennedy:
Britain is the one that's done the special deal with the United States on extradition. But Sweden is particularly strong in seeing as sacrosanct that business about handing people over, they would hold to that perhaps stronger than Britain would. We think we've got a special relationship with the United States.
As Helena Kennedy herself says:
  • Britain has a special deal with the United States on extradition. This deal is famously one-sided in favor of the U.S.
  • Sweden is known as being particularly strict in terms of not extraditing people from their country.
In fact, it would not only be easier to extradite Assange from the United Kingdom than from Sweden, but WikiLeaks neglects to mention the most relevant point:

Were Assange to be extradited to Sweden, they could not subsequently extradite him to the U.S. without Britain's permission. The U.S. would have to receive permission from both countries in order to extradite. The question of which is harder to extradite from, individually speaking, is moot.
It is false that it would be easier to extradite Assange from the United Kingdom than from Sweden.

Source: Click here.
As we say in the film, WikiLeaks did not get the funding they were hoping for, and in October 2011 they announced that they would "suspend operations." Assange said at the time:
if WikiLeaks does not find a way to remove this [financial] blockade we will simply not be able to continue by the turn of the new year. If we don't knock down the blockade we simply will not be able to continue.
Perhaps this statement was pure hyperbole on Assange's part, but it is clear at this point in our story WikiLeaks is in dire straits.

In regard to later leaks, as we mention above, the success that WikiLeaks was able to achieve in 2010 is long behind it.

Note the final publication WikiLeaks mentions: they have taken to republishing Manning's leaks along with publicly available information in lieu of new leaks.
Note: This is pure hyperbole. Since December 2011 WikiLeaks has released millions of documents, including the SpyFiles series, the Detainee Policies, the Stratfor emails (the GIFiles), the Syria Files and, in April 2013, both Cablegate and 1.7 million Kissinger Cables in an easily searchable PlusD Public Library of US Diplomacy.

Source: Click here.

Narration by Alex Gibney:
Despite that special relationship, Assange desperately fought extradition to Sweden and lost every appeal. His legal battle drained his finances and trapped him at the family farm for over a year. Hoped-for funding didn’t come and WikiLeaks suspended operations. His international organization had blown apart.

In Berlin, Domscheit-Berg had quit the organisation. So did the mysterious figure who had built the secret submission system. Assange no longer had a drop box for new leaks. In London, journalist Heather Brooke was leaked unredacted copies of all the State Department cables by a WikiLeaks insider.
The creation of the Freedom of the Press Foundation is admirable, and we commend the organization. Earlier in the film, we point out the folly of the financial blockade against WikiLeaks which motivated the creation of the Freedom of the Press Foundation.
Note: In December 2012 the Freedom of the Press Foundation was set up in response to the banking blockade against WikiLeaks to raise funds for transparency journalism organisations under threat. The FPF commitment to raise funds for WikiLeaks is ongoing while the blockade remains in place.

Source: Click here.

Heather Brooke:
There was the initial people that Julian gave the information to, and then how many people did they give it to? And then how many people did they give it to?
The European dictator in question is Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus. In an earlier, longer cut, the film contained more information about the matter. In cutting the film down to time, we used shorthand to describe this incident.

Nevertheless, WikiLeaks contends that they asked people "to provide their information" so WikiLeaks could investigate and respond. However, when the free speech organization Index on Censorship contacted them about this, offering a number of details and questions related to the matter, WikiLeaks chose not to actually respond. It's worth looking at their piece.

For more information on the case: The New Statesman also published a lengthy piece about it with some interesting reporting on Belarus, but due to other factual errors in the article we recommend it with reservation.

Reading recommendations aside, it should be noted that WikiLeaks's "most comprehensive discussion of the matter" is far from objective. Rather than cite respected newspapers or a respected NGO, WikiLeaks links to the website of an anonymous WikiLeaks supporter, a.k.a. "Martha Mitchell," who maintains a website and Twitter account devoted to supporting WikiLeaks in their public controversies. Her positions mirror those of WikiLeaks and Assange. As with many of their "citations" in this transcript, WikiLeaks trusts that the reader will not investigate further.
Note: Gibney makes an unfounded statement for which he provides no evidence. WikiLeaks asked those making this claim to provide their information so that an investigation could be commenced into the issue. They did not.

The most comprehensive discussion of the matter can be found here.

Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Some of the cables were also leaked to a European dictator, who used them to target dissidents and suppress free speech.
The unfortunate and complicated case that WikiLeaks refers to is hardly all Domscheit-Berg's fault. A careful look at the leak of the unredacted cables shows that blame can be apportioned out not only to Domscheit-Berg, but to WikiLeaks, the Guardian, David Leigh, and Assange. David Leigh foolishly published a password for files that both Assange and Domscheit-Berg foolishly handled, and Domscheit-Berg foolishly discussed. Wired magazine covered the event fairly well here. There is also a good account in Andy Greenberg's excellent book, This Machine Kills Secrets.

Of course, this one case of unredacted information escaping is far from the only issue. As the Lukashenko case and the leak to journalist Heather Brooke make clear, WikiLeaks did not take as great care as they should have to protect the unredacted information.
Note: In August 2011 Daniel Domscheit-Berg was responsible for the whereabouts of the hidden unredacted cables files and the location of the passphrase to it (a chapter title in Guardian journalist David Leigh's cash-in WikiLeaks book) being reported in the press.

Source:
Click here.
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
This is at the core of where things went wrong, and where ultimately WikiLeaks has lost control over the spread of these documents.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
In the end, all of the cables leaked across the internet on mirrored versions of WikiLeaks.org. All Julian had left was his celebrity.
Footage of Simpsons episode in which Julian Assange made a guest appearance.
WikiLeaks simply has a different interpretation than we do. We don't think the show was without merit. Assange may not a great interviewer, but he did have some interesting guests.

The semantics are at issue here. One could call it a "12-part interview series." But one could say equally it was a chat show, hosted by Julian Assange, which struggled to gain viewers and only ran for 12 episodes.
Note: In fact, Julian Assange did not "host a chat show for Russian state television." He produced a 12-part interview series with activists and thinkers from around the world, "The World Tomorrow". The series was produced by Assange's own production company, QuickRoll Productions, in conjunction with the London-based production company Dartmouth Films.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Julian extended his brand by hosting a chat show for Russian state television.
Russia Today, which is in fact Russian state television, was the first broadcaster and by far the most important licensor of Assange's show, giving it global reach. Shows are often made for particular broadcasters while also sub-licensed in smaller side ventures.
The license for the series was sold to a number of regional broadcasters, one of which was Russia Today.

Source: Click here.

Footage of Julian Assange interviewing Ecuador's President Rafael Correa on talk show The World Tomorrow, which was independently produced by WikiLeaks and licensed to RT (Russia Today) and other broadcasters.
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Rafael Correa:
Where are you? In England?
Julian Assange:
I am in England under house arrest now for 500 days.
Rafael Correa:
500 days?
Narration by Alex Gibney:
One of his guests was Rafael Correa, the President of Ecuador.
More footage of Julian Assange interviewing Correa.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
A month after the program aired, Assange sought asylum from his former TV guest.
Footage of Julian Assange speaking from the Ecuadorian embassy balcony after being formally granted asylum
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Julian Assange:
In the morning, the sun came up on a different world, and a courageous Latin American nation took a stand for justice.
A link to a different report by the U.S.-based Committee to Protect Journalists shows an Ecuadorian journalist in prison in 2008. By only linking to one year, WikiLeaks means to deceive the reader who won't look further. Indeed, if one takes the time to peruse other sources, they would find the 2012 Human Rights Watch report on Ecuador, which states:

Ecuador’s Criminal Code still has provisions criminalizing desacato (“lack of respect”), under which anyone who offends a government official may receive a prison sentence up to three months and up to two years for offending the president...

Under the existing code, journalists face prison sentences and crippling damages for this offense. According to [Ecuadorian press freedom advocacy group] Fundamedios, by October 2011 five journalists had been sentenced to prison terms for defamation since 2008, and 18 journalists, media directors, and owners of media outlets faced similar charges.

By convicting numerous journalists of libel and shutting down opposition media outlets, the Ecuadorian government under President Correa has seriously damaged the nation's free press and chilled dissent. There is a reason why Freedom House rates the country's press as "Not Free" and Reporters Without Borders ranks the country #119 in their World Press Freedom Index—51 spots lower than when Correa took office in 2007.

It's not surprising that Assange would move to defend his hosts, but it does not make him right.
Note: The claim is false. According to the US-based Committee to Protect Journalists there are no journalists in prison in Ecuador.

Source: Click here.

The attack on Assange over Ecuador's press freedom record is comprehensively addressed here.

Source: Click here.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
It was an ironic choice. Ecuador had a record of putting journalists in prison and had been charged with corruption in a WikiLeaks cable.
More footage Julian Assange speaking from the embassy balcony.
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Julian Assange:
The United States must renounce its witch-hunt against WikiLeaks.
Assange requested asylum days after the UK Supreme Court rejected his final appeal against extradition to Sweden. He applied for asylum in order to avoid this extradition, based upon the theory that he could be extradited to the U.S. once in Sweden. Assange has claimed time and again, not least in these annotations to our film, that there is a non-public plan (i.e. a secret plot) to take advantage of an extradition to Sweden in order to bring him to the United States for prosecution. As we show throughout this document, there is scant evidence for such a plan.
Note: This is false and misleading. Assange did not allege a 'secret plot'; he presented an asylum application, backed by voluminous evidence, of a political persecution against him and the WikiLeaks organisation, including public statements acknowledging the existence and unprecedented nature and scope of a US investigation against WikiLeaks.

The government of Ecuador rigorously examined the evidence presented for two months before granting Assange asylum. The government of Ecuador explained the reasons for concluding that "there are serious indications of retaliation by the country or countries that produced the information disclosed by Mr. Assange, retaliation that can put at risk his safety, integrity and even his life".

Narration by Alex Gibney:
Despite the lack of evidence of any secret plot, Ecuador granted him asylum. The British government pledged to arrest him if he left the tiny confines of the embassy, so Assange prepared for a long stay.
Three rounds of British courts decided differently when they confirmed the validity of Swedish prosecution and then rejected numerous appeals by Assange. It is unclear why Assange believes the government of Ecuador is better suited to make judgments on his extradition from the UK than the actual government of the UK.
Furthermore, the government of Ecuador noted that "that the Swedish prosecutor’s office has had a contradictory attitude that prevented Mr. Assange from the total exercise of the legitimate right to defense" and they were "convinced that the procedural rights of Mr. Assange have been infringed during that investigation".

Source:
Click here.
Source: Click here.
Source: Click here.

This is one in a number of exact repetitions that WikiLeaks uses to fill out their annotations. See here, here, and here for more. We address this claim above.
Throughout "We Steal Secrets," Gibney systematically omits mention or downplays the significance of the US attempt to prosecute WikiLeaks and Julian Assange. The film neglects to mention that the US investigation against WikiLeaks is, as official accounts describe, "unprecedented in its scale and nature" . The US grand jury has been empanelled in secret since September 2010 (first confirmed by the US Department of Justice November 2010).

US prosecutors in Virginia have been working since 2010 to establish a 'conspiracy to commit espionage" link between Manning and Assange. The ongoing nature of the Grand Jury criminal investigation into WikiLeaks was most recently confirmed on March 26, 2013 by a spokesman for the US Attorney's office for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Source:
Click here.

This is a distraction. WikiLeaks often boasts about the scope of their publications. It should not be surprising that an investigation into the leak of 700,000 government documents would itself contain many documents. This indicates nothing about the current size of the investigation, as we detail above.
The FBI investigation into WikiLeaks consisted of "42,135 pages or 3,475 documents", not including Grand Jury testimony, according to the lead prosecutor at Manning's pre-trial hearing. He added that "Private First Class Manning ... represents only 8,741 pages of the file."

Source:
Click here.
We address the issue of a sealed indictment in the film. It should be noted that the rumor of a sealed indictment is just that: a rumor.
Correspondence from the ex-Deputy Chief of Counterterrorism for the DSS (State Department's Diplomatic Security Service) leaked to WikiLeaks revealed that the WikiLeaks Grand Jury had issued a sealed indictment for Assange before February 2011: "Not for Pub — We have a sealed indictment on Assange. Pls protect."

Source:
Click here.

It is a criminal offence for any US government official to reveal the existence of a sealed indictment before it is unsealed, which only happens when the indicted person is taken into custody.

Source:
Click here.

First, the Swedish prosecution is following typical procedure. There is no reason for them to travel to the UK when international agreements allow them to request what should have been a relatively quick extradition.

In reality though, this obscures the point. Swedish authorities do not wish to question Assange regarding details of the case. The Swedish prosecutors have all the facts they need in order to bring charges against Assange. But, according to Swedish legal procedure, Assange cannot be charged unless or until he is under arrest in Sweden. The "questioning" to which Assange refers is a final demand—prior to trial—for Assange to present any reason why he should not be charged.
The law provides for the possibility for the Swedish prosecutor to question Julian Assange in London. In April 2013, Swedish Supreme Court judge Stefan Lindskog stated: “I would like to comment upon the possibility of the prosecutor to go to London. It is possible that the prosecutor could travel to London and interrogate him there. I have no answer to the question why that hasn’t happened.”

Source:
Click here.

Footage of protests outside the Ecuadorian embassy.
We agree with Anna. The sexual offenses for which Assange is to be tried in Sweden have nothing to do with Manning.

The case in Sweden is certainly quite high profile, and Assange has done very little to make it less so. The high profile nature of the case does not make it a conspiracy.
Note: The Bradley Manning, Julian Assange and WikiLeaks cases have everything to do with each other. The parallel investigation by the Department of Justice into Assange and WikiLeaks is mentioned explicitly in the Manning proceedings at numerous points. Assange and WikiLeaks are current litigants in the Manning case. In relation to the Swedish matter the intense politicization of the process is clear. Although Assange has still not been charged, the UK admits to spending more than $4.3 million on surveilling Assange at the embassy in the first 7 months alone.

Source: Click here.
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Anna:
I saw these signs Free Bradley Manning and Free Julian Assange and I think it's ridiculous! These two cases have nothing to do with each other. Julian – he's not even imprisoned – he has locked himself up to avoid coming to Sweden to answer a few pretty simple questions.
This is the third repetition of this point, which we first repudiate here.
Note: Ball fabricates the significance of one of Julian Assange's teenage screen names "Splendide Mendax", this time in the mouth of an interviewee. The screen name is a joke. In Latin it means "Nobly untrue", but as a pseudonym it describes how handles protect an author's identity even though being inherently "untrue". It is a phrase which describes itself, not its author, just like the word "word".
"Claims my teenage nickname was Mendax, “given to lying”, instead of Splendide Mendax, “nobly untruthful”, which is a teenage joke on handles being inherently untrue. It is self-referential, not a psychoanalysis 20 years ahead of its time!"
— Julian Assange, Complaint to Ofcom regarding the Guardian co-produced Secrets & Lies documentary, January 9, 2012.

Source:
Click here.
James Ball:
There is a phenomenon called "noble cause corruption": essentially, you do things which if anyone else did you would recognise aren't ok, aren't right, but because you know you're a good guy, it's different for you. I suppose you can’t accuse Julian of not setting out from the beginning what he may do: Mendax by name, Mendax by nature.
Nick Davies:
The same extraordinary personality which conceived of and created WikiLeaks is also the same personality that has, effectively, destroyed WikiLeaks.
See above in regard to Domscheit-Berg's standing to talk about WikiLeaks.

Domscheit-Berg and other former WikiLeaks colleagues have a very different account of events regarding the "theft" of data and equipment.

Domscheit-Berg did attempt to start a rival leaks organization, without success. His failure to found a successful organization does not diminish his ability to make the following valid points:
  1. Manning took far greater risks than Assange
  2. Manning is now dealing with far greater consequences from the leaks than Assange.
  3. No one should view Julian Assange as some kind of savior.
  4. The WikiLeaks organization has engaged on a smaller scale in many of the same secretive, manipulative, and vindictive practices as the organizations that they have targeted with their publication.
Anyone who watches our film will see that this is true.
Note: Daniel Domschiet-Berg is not a reliable narrator. He is in an ongoing legal conflict with Wikileaks over theft of equipment and data left in Germany. He tried to start a now-defunct rival publishing organisation, "OpenLeaks," in August 2010. OpenLeaks did not publish a single document. He also has a pecuniary interest in the anti-Wikileaks film the "5th estate".
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
WikiLeaks has become what it detests and what it actually tried to rid the world of. We must get away from this understanding that we see Julian as the saviour, as some noble guru, as some new hero or some new pop star or whatever that's going to change all of it. The credit is undue - everybody celebrating Julian as a whistleblower - he is not - Bradley Manning might have been a whistleblower. And if he was, he is the courageous guy. He is the one that took all the risk and, in the end, now is suffering.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
After his arrest, Manning had been held for two months in an 8x8-foot cage in Kuwait, then he was transferred to the Marine Corps Brig in Quantico, Virginia. For a man who had not been charged with any crime, he was kept in solitary confinement for nearly a year.
TV interview of Adrian Lamo about Bradley Manning.
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Interviewer:
Bradley Manning, the alleged leaker, is currently sitting in prison and he could be locked up for the rest of his life. How do you feel about that?
Adrian Lamo:
I think that it's a little bit ludicrous to say that Bradley Manning's going to be tortured. We don’t do that to our citizens. [audience boos]
Narration by Alex Gibney:
A high-ranking general authorised Manning’s placement in solitary confinement on suicide watch against the protest of prison doctors. His clothes and blankets were taken from him, lights in his cell were always on. When he questioned his treatment, guards took away his glasses and forced him to stand naked during his morning roll call. At night, guards kept him cold and woke him frequently in a practice that recalled the sleep deprivation programme at Guantanamo. Manning's supporters speculated that the US government was trying to push Manning to turn on Assange and implicate him in a crime.
Alex Gibney:
What was your reaction about Bradley Manning’s treatment at Quantico? I mean, it seemed to me, with its sleep deprivation and these were, you know, whatever you call them, enhanced interrogation techniques, these were being practised on him, and...
Michael Hayden:
[Laughs] No. Look, I don't know the specifics. I don't know the rules of confinement for the Marine Brig at Quantico, but Bob Gates is an incredibly honourable man, General Joint Chiefs Mike Mullen is an incredibly honourable man - I defer very much to their judgement that whatever was done was appropriate.
PJ Crowley:
The treatment that he was receiving at Quantico, the level of solitary confinement, the fact that his clothes were taken away at night, it was inconsistent with our values - and our interests. It was making Bradley Manning a far more sympathetic figure than I see him. When I was asked about it at a forum at MIT, I gave a candid answer.
News footage of Obama being asked about PJ Crowley's comments.
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Journalist:
The State Department spokesman PJ Crowley said the treatment of Bradley Manning by the Pentagon is 'ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid'. I wonder if you agree with that?
Barack Obama:
You know, I have actually asked the Pentagon whether or not the procedures that have been taken in terms of his confinement are appropriate and are meeting our basic standards. They assured me that they are.
Bill Leonard:
I was appalled at that. I was appalled at that with respect to the President's responsibility as Commander-in-Chief. Any Commander - any Commander - knows that first and foremost he or she is responsible for the wellbeing of each and every one of their soldiers, to include the ones sitting in the brig.
More footage of Obama on Manning's treatment.
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Barack Obama:
I can't go into details about some of their concerns, but some of this has to do with Private Manning’s safety as well.
Responds to journalist's question.
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Barack Obama:
I think I gave you an answer to the substance at issue.
PJ Crowley:
Once my comments were brought to the President of the United States, I felt that the only thing that I should do is resign. I stand by what I said.
Narration by Alex Gibney:
What was unsaid was any consideration of holding Manning's supervisors accountable for permitting the greatest security breach in American history.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
weak servers, weak logging, weak physical security...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
a perfect storm
Narration by Alex Gibney:
Manning’s commanding officer only received a minor demotion. The army brought 22 charges against Manning. They included aiding the enemy, without naming just who the enemy was. For these charges, Manning faces life in prison and a possible death sentence.
Nick Davies:
People who don’t like the leak try to say that it was damaging national security. Have you ever seen any evidence that American national security has been damaged in any way by this?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Guardian newspaper headline:
WikiLeaks has caused little lasting damage, says US state department
Nick Davies:
And if you look at what the whistleblower is saying in that online chat, and look at what he doesn’t say.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
what if i were someone more malicious...
Nick Davies:
He doesn’t say I want money. He doesn’t say I am going to go to Russia or China, I'm going to go to Al-Qaeda to give them this stuff - doesn't happen.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i could've sold to russia or china, and made bank?
Nick Davies:
He says this is material that the people of the world need to have.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
it's public data...it belongs in the public domain
Manning did indeed send 730,000 documents to WikiLeaks without knowing exactly how WikiLeaks would handle the release. As Manning says in the quotation WikiLeaks includes:
I was not sure if the WLO would actually publish the SigAct tables [i.e. the Afghanistan and Iraq War Logs]
It is relevant to contrast this to a point that Edward Snowden made when he announced his leak. Not only did he want to leak only documents that he had read, but he also wanted to work with journalists whom he trusted rather than to use an anonymous leaking mechanism.

Of course, in their rush to attack the credibility of every interviewee in the film, as well as to defend themselves from every last bit of criticism, WikiLeaks happily ignores the fact that Davies is making a point in Manning's defense.
Note: Nick Davies makes a false assumption that Bradley Manning naively "dump[ed] the whole lot without thinking ahead about how that was going to be handled", which is contradicted by the statement presented by Bradley Manning before the military court:
At this point I decided that it made sense to try to expose the SigAct tables to an American newspaper. I first called my local newspaper, The Washington Post, and spoke with a woman saying that she was a reporter. I asked her if The Washington Post would be interested in receiving information that would have enormous value to the American public. Although we spoke for about five minutes concerning the general nature of what I possessed, I do not believe she took me seriously.
He claims he then contacted the New York Times, but "I never received a reply."

As part of his work as an intelligence analyst, Manning claims he had assessed WikiLeaks to be a credible media organisation, "following it and collecting open source information from it. During this time period, I followed several organizations and groups including wire press agencies such as the Associated Press and Reuters and private intelligence agencies including Strategic Forecasting or Stratfor. This practice was something I was trained to do during AIT, and was something that good analysts were expected to do."

Manning noted that "WLO [WikiLeaks] received numerous award and recognition for its reporting activities" and, based on his observations, that "WLO seemed to be dedicated to exposing illegal activities and corruption" and "I would describe the WL organization as almost academic in nature".

Manning states that his sole concerns about WikiLeaks were that "I was not sure if the WLO would actually publish the SigAct tables... I was also concerned that they might not be noticed by the American media. However, based upon what I read about the WLO through my research described above, this seemed to be the best medium for publishing this information to the world within my reach."

Source:
Click here.
Nick Davies:
And it was naïve to dump the whole lot without thinking ahead about how that was going to be handled. But you don’t have to lock this guy up for decades, and effectively put him through forms of torture – that's a politically motivated act of vengeance on somebody who hasn’t damaged national security; he's caused embarrassment.
Footage of Secretary of State Hilary Clinton press briefing.
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Hillary Clinton:
Let's be clear. This disclosure is not just an attack on America’s foreign policy interests, it is an attack on the international community.
Heather Brooke:
The American government said: 'You can't publish this, it's dangerous, it's going to damage world affairs, diplomacy, etc, and then you publish it anyway and it's for the greater good, telling people what they needed to know.
James Ball:
The question becomes: does it matter and what changes? I think really we have to say that something has started, and it's not going to be about WikiLeaks, it's going to be about transparency and accountability and keeping power in check, keeping governments responsible – and who cares who does it, as long as someone does?
Bill Leonard:
Information by its very nature needs to flow. In some regards withholding information is trying to repeal the laws of gravity. You may succeed for a short period of time but sooner or later it's going to break through.
Alex Gibney:
You're talking just like a hacker.
Footage from a hacker conference discussion about Bradley Manning.
We document Lamo's duplicity earlier in the film, in sections WikiLeaks omitted.

There is no attempt to "remake" Adrian Lamo. Few people who have seen the film have come away with a positive impression of Lamo. Instead, they have recognized that he is conflicted over his actions, even if just because of the effect his actions have had on his relationship with other hackers.
Note: Gibney attempts to remake the man who betrayed and exploited Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo, into a tragic figure, unwillingly swept up into the WikiLeaks story, when in reality his aggressive exploitation of the situation for personal benefit is well documented. Source: Click here.
Adrian Lamo:
I care more about Bradley than many of his supporters do. We had a chance to be friends, however briefly, and he opened up in a lot of ways about his life, his personal life, and he did it in a way that... [garbled] someone that they felt they could trust. And I had to betray that trust for the sake of all of the people that he put in danger. And I wish to hell that it had never happened. [Lamo cries on camera]
Timothy Webster:
It's going to be a question for the ages why Bradley Manning reached out to someone he really didn’t know and then trusted him with such a life-altering secret. The only thing I can come up with is that once he saw the results of the leak, the need just to share that just probably grew and grew. He just needed to tell anybody, and he thought Adrian was the right person to tell.
James Ball:
Whistleblowing is an isolating act. It's a courageous and phenomenal thing to do, but you are essentially doing something that your colleagues and friends would not want you to do, would not understand. It alienates you further from them. A source who needs to talk to someone and explain what they've done and think through what they've done needs someone safe to do that to.
Note that this is how WikiLeaks describes the following chats which they omitted:
The Adrian Lamo/Bradass87 chat logs are shown on screen again.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
I've developed a relationship with assange...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
he knows very little about me...

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
"lie to me" he says

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
"lie to me"
It's unclear whether WikiLeaks contests James Ball's immediately preceding claims:
Whistleblowing is an isolating act. It's a courageous and phenomenal thing to do, but you are essentially doing something that your colleagues and friends would not want you to do, would not understand. It alienates you further from them. A source who needs to talk to someone and explain what they've done and think through what they've done needs someone safe to do that to.
WikiLeaks's citation of Manning's testimony is shameful. First, they use it to counter Ball's point when Manning's testimony supports Ball:
In my section, the S2 section and supported battalions and the 2nd Brigade Combat Team as a whole. For instance, I lacked close ties with my roommate to his discomfort regarding my perceived sexual orientation. Over the next few months, I stayed in frequent contact with Nathaniel. We conversed on nearly a daily basis and I felt that we were developing a friendship.
More importantly, they exclude the section of Manning's statement most relevant for understanding what happened to their relationship:
Conversations covered many topics and I enjoyed the ability to talk about pretty much everything anything, and not just the publications that the WLO was working on. In retrospect I realize that that these dynamics were artificial and were valued more by myself than Nathaniel.
The fact is that "Nathaniel," whether Julian Assange or someone else at WikiLeaks, abandoned Manning after she leaked everything she could give them. She needed emotional support in a difficult time, she just needed someone to talk to, and "Nathaniel" told her that he would have no time for her:
In late March of 2010, I received a warning over Jabber from Nathaniel, that the WLO website would be publishing the aerial weapons team video. He indicated that the WLO would be very busy and the frequency and intensity of our Jabber conversations decrease significantly. During this time, I had nothing but work to distract me.
No one at WikiLeaks has addressed this in the least. They could say that Manning perceived the situation incorrectly. They could say that Manning misunderstood. Instead, they pretend as if Manning never said it, likely because they know the truth.

At least Lamo expresses regret for not having been the friend Manning needed. Someone at WikiLeaks did the same to Manning, but without the regret.
Note: This is a now-classic anti-WikiLeaks argument created by James Ball, an attempt to allege that the blame for Manning's arrest lies with WikiLeaks and not with Adrian Lamo, the FBI informant who turned Manning in after telling him that he would protect him.

Ball's allegation that WikiLeaks does not adequately support its sources conflicts with the account that Manning presented before the military court regarding his alleged contacts with WikiLeaks. In a plea statement, February 28, 2013, Manning said this:
After a period of time, I developed what I felt was a friendly relationship with Nathaniel [Manning's designation for his contact at WikiLeaks]. Our mutual interest in information technology and politics made our conversations enjoyable. We engaged in conversation often. Sometimes as long as an hour or more. I often looked forward to my conversations with Nathaniel after work.

Source:
Click here.
James Ball:
In the logs Manning says he couldn't talk to WikiLeaks - that's not how they work. Does that protect whistleblowers? Or does it protect WikiLeaks?
This is the one moment in the transcript when WikiLeaks makes any effort at all to properly describe Manning's voice or perspective in the film.
A section of the chat logs where Bradley Manning says how isolated and lonely he feels are shown.

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i'm pretty desperate for some non isolation
Daniel Domscheit-Berg:
In the end, everybody's just lonely. I mean, if you are leaking material to someone, if you are telling a reporter a good story, something that really makes a difference, then I think, just from a human perspective, it's really difficult not to get any credit for it. Because no one can tap you on the shoulder and say "Good job," I mean, "courageous thing you did". And this is the really complicated part about it. How do you make sure that your source does not compromise themselves?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i can't believe what im confessing to you

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
;'(

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
www.kxol.com.au/images/pale_blue_dot.jpg <-sums it up for me
Narration by Alex Gibney
In the chats, Manning sent a link to Pale Blue Dot – a famous photo of Earth he saw while reading an essay by the astronomer Carl Sagan. "That’s home," said Sagan, "that’s us – every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there; on a mote of dust, suspended on a sunbeam. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us."

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


Manning:
i... care?

Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


After international outcry, the US Army moved Bradley Manning out of solitary confinement.

In February 2013, Manning pled guilty to leaking documents to WikiLeaks. The Army continued to prosecute him for "aiding the enemy."

Bradley Manning was held without trial for more than 3 years.


Omitted in WikiLeaks's original
transcript of the film


As of March 2013, Julian Assange remains confined to a small room in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London

He promised to publish more documents and announced his campaign to run for Senate in Australia.