julian assange quotes



The greater the power, the more need there is for transparency, because if the power is abused, the result can be so enormous. On the other hand, those people who do not have power, we mustn't reduce their power even more by making them yet more transparent.


I saw that publishing all over the world was deeply constrained by self-censorship, economics and political censorship, while the military-industrial complex was growing at a tremendous rate, and the amount of information that it was collecting about all of us vastly exceeded the public imagination.


All over the world, the barriers between what is inside an organisation and outside an organisation are being smoothed out. In the military, the use of contractors means that what is the military and what is not the military is smoothed out.


We always expect tremendous criticism. It is my role to be the lightning rod ... to attract the attacks against the organization for our work, and that is a difficult role. On the other hand, I get undue credit.


We get information in the mail, the regular postal mail, encrypted or not, vet it like a regular news organization, format it - which is sometimes something that's quite hard to do, when you're talking about giant databases of information - release it to the public and then defend ourselves against the inevitable legal and political attacks.


In my role as Wikileaks editor, I've been involved in fighting off many legal attacks. To do that, and keep our sources safe, we have had to spread assets, encrypt everything, and move telecommunications and people around the world to activate protective laws in different national jurisdictions.


The Iraq War was the biggest issue for people of my generation in the West. It was also the clearest case, in my living memory, of media manipulation and the creation of a war through ignorance.


I mean there's enormous pressures to harmonize freedom of speech legislation and transparency legislation around the world - within the E.U., between China and the United States. Which way is it going to go? It's hard to see.


When it comes to the point where you occasionally look forward to being in prison on the basis that you might be able to spend a day reading a book, the realization dawns that perhaps the situation has become a little more stressful than you would like.


Journalists always like an excuse for why are they talking about something now when they didn't talk about something a week ago. They always like to say something is new.


Cryptography is the essential building block of independence for organisations on the Internet, just like armies are the essential building blocks of states, because otherwise one state just takes over another.


During the period of house arrest, I had an electronic manacle around my leg for 24 hours a day, and for someone who has tried to give others liberty all their adult life, that is absolutely intolerable.


It is the role of good journalism to take on powerful abusers, and when powerful abusers are taken on, there's always a bad reaction. So we see that controversy, and we believe that is a good thing to engage in.


We have a way of dealing with information that has sort of personal - personally identifying information in it. But there are legitimate secrets - you know, your records with your doctor; that's a legitimate secret. But we deal with whistleblowers that are coming forward that are really sort of well motivated.


We released 400,000 classified documents, the most extraordinary history of a war to ever have been released in our civilization. Those documents cover 109,000 deaths. That is serious matter.


That's a problem. I mean, like any sort of growing startup organization, we are sort of overwhelmed by our growth. And that means we're getting enormous quantity of whistleblower disclosures of a very high caliber, but don't have enough people to actually process and vet this information.


Well, there's a question as to what sort of information is important in the world, what sort of information can achieve reform. And there's a lot of information. So information that organizations are spending economic effort into concealing, that's a really good signal that when the information gets out, there's a hope of it doing some good.


As we have seen, WikiLeaks is a robust organization. During my time in solitary confinement in the basement of a Victorian prison, we continue to release, our media partners continued to write stories. The important revelations from this material continue to come out. We have approximately 2,000 cables into 250,000.


What is the possible benefit? Can this material save lives? Can it improve the quality of life in Iraq? Can it tend to shape our perceptions of how war should and should not be conducted? Can it shape our perceptions of who should be conducting war and in what manner? And the answer to that is a clear yes.


The penetration of society by the Internet and the penetration of the Internet by society is the best thing that has ever happened to global human civilisation.




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