[VIDEO] Bombshell: Seth Rich, Slain DNC Staffer, Had Contact with WikiLeaks, say Multiple Sources

Assange has not returned a series of recent emails from Fox News about Rich. MacFadyen, who was considered a mentor by Assange, died of lung cancer on Oct. 22 at age 76.

D.C. police have announced a $25,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of Rich’s killer. Republican lobbyist Jack Burkman has offered a separate $130,000 reward.


Rich had been at Lou’s City Bar a couple of miles from his home until about 1:15 a.m. He walked home, calling several people along the way. He called his father, Joel Rich, who he missed because he had gone to sleep. He talked with a fraternity brother and his girlfriend, Kelsey Mulka.

Around 4:17 a.m., Rich was about a block from his home when Mulka, still on the phone with him, heard voices in the background. Rich reassured her that he was steps away from being at his front door and hung up.

Two minutes later, Rich was shot twice. Police were on the scene within three minutes. Rich sustained bruising on his hands and face. He remained conscious, but died at a nearby hospital less than two hours later. Read the rest of this entry »


Wikileaks In A Box: SecureDrop Is WhistleBlower Communication Tool For Media

[Image Credit: Flickr User Electronic Frontier Foundation]

Image Credit: Flickr User Electronic Frontier Foundation

 reports: In an effort to protect government whistleblowers from unprecedented levels of surveillance, the Freedom of the Press Foundation has launched SecureDrop, an anonymous submission tool for secure communications between sources and journalists. SecureDrop accepts encrypted documents and tips from sources and facilitates communication without putting journalists in jeopardy of having to reveal sources under the threat of imprisonment.

The need for security is heightened given the Obama Administration’s aggressive prosecution of leakers under the Espionage act. Last Spring, for instance, the Justice Department seized the phone records of AP journalists involved in reporting a foiled bomb plot in Yemen.

“One of the reasons that the Obama administration has prosecuted so many whistleblowers is that there’s an easy way to find digital trails of how journalists meet sources and talk to them,” said Freedom of the Press Foundation Executive Director, Trevor Timm. “We need to figure out a way for journalists to talk to sources without that fear.”

SecureDrop was originally the project of fallen hacktivist, Aaron Swartz (then called DeadDrop). The project has since been updated to account for recent National Security Agency spying revelations, though the organization reminds reporters than nothing is 100% secure. The code base is open source and has been vetted by security experts from the University of Washington [PDF].

Freedom of the Press Foundation has even offered to help outlets install the rather complex encryption tool. Learn more about it here.


Obama, Holder, Journalists, and Their Sources

In October, DreamWorks plans to release “The Fifth Estate,” an international thriller about WikiLeaks. The director is Bill Condon, who made two of the “Twilight” vampire movies; Benedict Cumberbatch plays Julian Assange. Sure to follow are studio imaginings of the Edward Snowden affair, which looked script-ready the minute the N.S.A. contractor surfaced in Hong Kong with a hard drive full of secrets and a baby face lined with stubble.

Assange and Snowden style themselves as philosopher-rebels in the age of Big Data, and, over all, their disclosures of state secrets have served the public interest. But the glamorization of their radicalism is a distraction. In American courthouses this summer, a vitally important, yet much more subdued, struggle over the First Amendment’s scope is taking place between the Obama Administration and the press. At issue is whether the Administration will fulfill a recent pledge to end its heavy-handed pursuit of professional journalists’ sources.

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Bradley Manning Sentenced to 35 Years in Prison

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning is escorted into a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., before a sentencing hearing in his court martial. Photo: Patrick Semansky/AP

After more than three years already spent in confinement while awaiting trial, former Army intelligence analyst Bradley Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison today for what has been described as the largest ever leak of classified government documents.

Manning, who is 25 years old, had been facing 90 years, and prosecutors had asked the judge to sentence him to a minimum of 60 years in prison, arguing that the leaks endangered lives and interfered with the government’s diplomatic efforts.

“There may not be a soldier in the history of the Army who displayed such an extreme disregard” for his mission, the prosecutor, Capt. Joe Morrow, said in court on Monday, according to CNN. Manning “felt he alone was knowledgeable and intelligent enough to determine what information was to be classified.”

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House Judiciary Committee Investigating Whether Holder Lied To Congress


The House Judiciary Committee is looking into Attorney General Eric Holder’s May 15 testimony on the Justice Department’s surveillance of reporters, to see if he lied under oath.

An aide “close to the matter” told The Hill that the panel is looking at the statement Holder made in response to Rep. Hank Johnson’s (D-Ga.) question about whether the DOJ could prosecute reporters under the Espionage Act of 1917.

“In regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material — this is not something I’ve ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be wise policy,” Holder said during the hearing.

However, NBC News reported last week that Holder personally approved a search warrant that labeled Fox News chief Washington correspondent James Rosen a co-conspirator in a national security leaks case.

The panel is investigating whether NBC’s report contradicts Holder’s claim that he had not looked into or been involved with a possible prosecution of the press in a leaks case.

This Attorney General has already been held in Contempt of Congress.  A perjury charge may finally be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. 

I kinda doubt today’s lame “crisis management” gambit is going to help him get out this one.