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Released on 2012-02-29 03:00 GMT

Email-ID 387684
Date 2010-06-17 20:15:31
Who funds WikiLeaks? Could this be a Russian front company? The dude needs
to be locked up.


From: Sean Noonan
Date: Thu, 17 Jun 2010 13:07:57 -0500
Subject: Re: [CT] [OS] ICELAND/US/MIL - Victory for WikiL eaks in
Iceland's Parliament
Note the analysis at the very bottom, this won't keep people like
Wikileaks protected, but it will help.

Daniel Ben-Nun wrote:

Victory for WikiLeaks in Iceland's Parliament


An Al Jazeera English video report explained the Icelandic Modern Media
Initiative in March.

At 4 a.m. on Thursday, at the end of an all-night session, Iceland's
Parliament, the Althing, voted unanimously in favor of a package of
legislation aimed at making the country a haven for freedom of
expression by offering legal protection to whistle-blower Web sites like
WikiLeaks, which helped to craft the proposal.

As the Web site Ice News reports, "One of the inspirations for the
proposal was the dramatic August 2009 gagging of of Iceland's national
broadcaster, RUV by Iceland's then largest bank, Kaupthing."

One of the sponsors of the proposal in the Althing, Birgitta Jonsdottir,
told my colleague Noam Cohen in February that Iceland hoped to become
"the inverse of a tax haven," by offering journalists and publishers
some of the most aggressive protections for free speech and
investigative journalism in the world. "They are trying to make
everything opaque," she said. "We are trying to make it transparent."

As Mr. Cohen explained in an article on the package of laws that passed
on Thursday:

The proposal, the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative, combines in a
single piece of legislation provisions from around the world:
whistle-blower laws and rules about Internet providers from the United
States; source protection laws from Belgium; freedom of information laws
from Estonia and Scotland, among others; and New York State's law to
counteract "libel tourism," the practice of suing in courts, like
Britain's, where journalists have the hardest time prevailing. [...]

The plan to make Iceland a world leader in journalism protection
took shape in December with the assistance of two leaders of the
whistle-blower Web site, Julian Assange and Daniel
Schmitt, whose publish-nearly-anything ideology has given them personal
experience with news media laws around the globe.

On Tuesday, Philip Shenon of The Daily Beast reported that Mr. Assange
had told supporters that the site would soon release another video of an
American military strike that killed civilians:

After several days underground, the founder of the secretive Web
site WikiLeaks has gone public to disclose that he is preparing to
release a classified Pentagon video of a U.S. airstrike in Afghanistan
last year that left as many as 140 civilians dead, most of them children
and teenagers.

In an e-mail message obtained by The Daily Beast that was sent to
WikiLeaks supporters in the United States Tuesday, Julian Assange, the
Web site's Australian-born founder, also defends a 22-year-old Army
intelligence specialist who is now under arrest in Kuwait on charges
that he leaked classified Pentagon combat videos, as well as 260,000
State Department cables, to WikiLeaks.

It is not yet clear how much help the new legislation will provide to
foreign journalists trying to shield themselves behind Icelandic law. As
the Nieman Journalism Lab notes:
In his analysis of the proposal - "Fortress Iceland? Probably Not."
- Arthur Bright of the Citizen Media Law Project has noted that in one
major test case of cross-border online libel law, "publication" was
deemed to occur at the point of download - meaning that serving a
controversial page from Iceland won't keep you from getting sued in
other countries. But if nothing else, it would probably prevent your
servers from being forcibly shut down.
Monroe Price, who runs a program in comparative media law at the
University of Oxford, told The Independent in London, "As an exercise in
aspirations, it's a bold and important endeavor." But, he added, "if
it's a significant issue like a national security question, then the
charging jurisdiction will figure out ways of asserting its power."

Daniel Ben-Nun
Strategic Forecasting, Inc.

Sean Noonan
Tactical Analyst
Mobile: +1 512-758-5967
Strategic Forecasting, Inc.