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Nuclear scandals exposed by Julian Assange and Wikileaks

What we know about nuclear weapons and the nuclear industry thanks to WikiLeaks

“The Nobel Peace Prize will be awarded on 11 October. Why I support the nomination of Julian Assange and WikiLeaks.” Open Democracy, Felicity Ruby, 7 October 2019  The Nobel Peace Prize will be awarded on 11 October. Julian Assange and WikiLeaks have been nominated for the prize again this year, as they have since 2010. As the first staffer of the campaign that won the Peace Prize in 2017, the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), I support this nomination for a number of reasons.

The vast majority of governments on this planet want nuclear disarmament negotiations to occur and produce results. ICAN has been mobilising this willingness to push for a new treaty to ban nuclear weapons. From the outset, the campaign deployed accurate information to mobilise public opinion and reeducate a new generation. In facing the truth about nuclear dangers, answers became available and courageous action was taken. Facing the truth about climate change similarly involves the public having accurate information and courageously acting on it.
WikiLeaks and Assange have made a great deal of information available about nuclear weapons and the nuclear industry. A search on the WikiLeaks site for the word ‘nuclear’ brings up 284, 493 results. These documents traverse the nuclear fuel cycle – from uranium mining to nuclear waste – with many thousands exposing nuclear energy industry giants, and nuclear weapon threat assessments, numbers, doctrines and negotiations.
Ten examples

Below are just ten examples of where WikiLeaks exposed wrongdoing on the part of governments and corporations that meant citizens could take action to protect themselves from harm, or governments were held to account:

– Chalk River nuclear reactor shut down – released 11 January 2008 – Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission on Chalk River reactor

After the Chalk River nuclear reactor was shut down for routine maintenance on 18 November 2007, inspectors verified the reactor’s cooling systems had not been modified as required by an August 2006 licensing review. Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) did not start the reactor but said upgrades could be done as part of maintenance while still operating safely. This impasse lasted a month, with the government intervening to grant an exemption to the reactor to allow its restart. The responsible Minister for Natural Resources, Gary Lunn MP, fired Linda Keen, the President of the Nuclear Safety Commission. Their exchange of letters revealed much about the safety standards and routine practices of the Canadian nuclear regulatory system, and particular problems with the ageing Chalk River reactor previously unknown to the public.

– Footage of the 1995 disaster at the Japanese Monju nuclear reactor – released 25 January 2008
Following the 2008 announcement that the Japanese Monju fast breeder nuclear reactor would be reopened, activists leaked the suppressed video footage of the sodium spill disaster that led to its closure in 1995. Named after the Buddhist divinity of wisdom, Monju, located in Japan’s Fukui prefecture, is Japan’s only fast-breeder reactor. Unlike conventional reactors, fast-breeder reactors, which “breed” plutonium, use sodium rather than water as a coolant. This type of coolant creates a potentially hazardous situation as sodium is highly corrosive and reacts violently with both water and air. On December 8, 1995, 700 kg of molten sodium leaked from the secondary cooling circuit of the Monju reactor, resulting in a fire that did not result in a radiation leak, but the potential for catastrophe was played down the extent of damage at the reactor and denied the existence of a videotape showing the sodium spill. Further complicating the story, the deputy general manager of the general affairs department at the PNC, Shigeo Nishimura, 49, jumped to his death the day after a news conference where he and other officials revealed the extent of the cover-up.

– Serious nuclear accident lay behind Iranian nuke chief’s mystery resignation – released 16 July 2009 WikiLeaks revealed that a source associated with Iran’s nuclear program confidentially told the organisation of a serious, recent, nuclear accident at Natanz. Natanz is the primary location of Iran’s nuclear enrichment program and the site targeted with the Stuxnet worm that contained 4 zero days and was designed to slow down and speed up centrifuges enriching uranium. WikiLeaks had reason to believe the source was credible, however contact with this source was lost. …………..

WikiLeaks and Assange have brought forward many truths that are hard to face, publishing well over 10 million documents since 2006. Often forgotten is that each one was provided by a whistleblower who trusted this platform to publish, and who sought reform of how political, corporate and media power elites operate. Each release has shared genuine official information about how governments, companies, banks, the UN, political parties, jailers, cults, private security firms, war planners and the media actually operate when they think no one is looking.

Assange is nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize because of these many releases of information, used as evidence in court cases, freeing prisoners and exposing scandals, torture, murder and surveillance for which redress is only possible when the wrongdoing is dragged into the light. For publishing this true information, Assange, an Australian based in the UK at the time of publication, is on the health ward of Belmarsh Prison, facing extradition and charges attracting 175 years in a US jail, an effective death sentence….. https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/can-europe-make-it/what-we-know-about-nuclear-weapons-and-nuclear-industry-thanks-wikileaks/

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October 8, 2019 Posted by | investigative journalism, Wikileaks | 1 Comment

Wikileaks has won many awards for fine journalism

Hervé Courtoi13 Apr 19  Via Karl Wunder  Snowden points out that the WikiLeaks team has won many awards for its reporting. These include:

The Economist New Media Award (2008)
The Amnesty New Media Award (2009)
The Sam Adams Award for Integrity (2010)
The National Union of Journalists Journalist of the Year (Hrafnsson) (2011)
The Sydney Peace Foundation Gold Medal (2011)
The Walkley Award for Most Outstanding Contribution to Journalism (2011)
The Voltaire Award for Free Speech (2011)
The International Piero Passetti Journalism Prize of the National Union of Italian Journalists (2011)
The Privacy International Hero of Privacy (2012)
The Global Exchange Human Rights People’s Choice Award (2013)
The Brazilian Press Association Human Rights Award (2013)
The Kazakhstan Union of Journalists Top Prize (2014)   
https://www.facebook.com/dunrenard?__tn__=%2CdC-R-R&eid=ARDsY6zh-XW-n6LQ3xBNitIkpLlrj2d_EY3QVMtZpkpIpUitBAOcbg-Jneyv9V0sBuUmUzP8kTPjKdaJ&hc_ref=ART42xFstjUK2mNP1sgOwKX9KXHTBaFbBxJ3FqA5K4sDWZN1J_D46gCLZpRG74XZMjc&fref=n

April 13, 2019 Posted by | 2 WORLD, Wikileaks | 1 Comment

Wikileaks ruled by UK tribunal to be a media organisation

Julian Assange welcomes UK ruling that WikiLeaks is a media organisation, WikiLeaks founder welcomes ruling by UK tribunal. IBT ,By Jason Murdock, December 14, 2017  WikiLeaks has been recognised as a “media organisation” by a UK tribunal in a ruling that flies in the face of claims by US officials who have branded it a “hostile intelligence agency”.

The anti-secrecy website – helmed by Julian Assange – has faced the ire of CIA director Mike Pompeo, who has compared its work to Hezbollah, Isis and al-Qaeda. Over the years, WikiLeaks has disclosed countless documents pilfered from the US government……….

The tribunal, in a section detailing the public interest for disclosing any withheld information, described Assange as “the only media publisher and free speech advocate in the Western world who is in a situation that a UN body has characterised as arbitrary detention”.

It added: “The circumstances of his case arguably raise issues about human rights and press freedom, which are the subject of legitimate public debate.”….http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/julian-assange-welcomes-uk-ruling-that-wikileaks-media-organisation-1651567

December 16, 2017 Posted by | UK, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

America moves to silence Wikileaks

Washington moves to silence WikiLeaks, WSW,  19 October 2016

The cutting off of Internet access for Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, is one more ugly episode in a US presidential election campaign that has plumbed the depths of political degradation.

Effectively imprisoned in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for over four years, Assange now is faced with a further limitation on his contact with the outside world.

On Tuesday, the Foreign Ministry of Ecuador confirmed WikiLeaks’ charge that Ecuador itself had ordered the severing of Assange’s Internet connection under pressure from the US government. In a statement, the ministry said that WikiLeaks had “published a wealth of documents impacting on the US election campaign,” adding that the government of Ecuador “respects the principle of non-intervention in the internal affairs of other states” and “does not interfere in external electoral processes.” On that grounds, the statement claimed, the Ecuadorian government decided to “restrict access” to the communications network at its London embassy……

WikiLeaks cited reports that Secretary of State John Kerry had demanded that the government of Ecuador carry out the action “on the sidelines of the negotiations” surrounding the abortive Colombian peace accord last month in Bogota. The US government intervened to prevent any further exposures that could damage the campaign of Clinton, who has emerged as the clear favorite of the US military and intelligence complex as well as the Wall Street banks.

Whether the State Department was the only entity placing pressure on Ecuador on behalf of the Clinton campaign, or whether Wall Street also intervened directly, is unclear. The timing of the Internet cutoff, in the immediate aftermath of the release of Clinton’s Goldman Sachs speeches, may be more than coincidental…….http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2016/10/19/pers-o19.html

October 22, 2016 Posted by | civil liberties, USA, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

The New Dirty War for Africa’s uranium and mineral rights: Wikileaks 

logo-WikileaksToday, Friday 5 February at 08:30 CET, WikiLeaks releases a collection of documents that open up a corrupt multi-billion dollar war by Western and Chinese companies grab uranium and other mining rights in the Central African Republic (CAR) and escape paying for the environmental consequences. Among the hundreds of pages in this publication are detailed maps of mining rights, mining contracts with illegal kickbacks and secret investigative reports. The documents have been long sought by fraud investigators. In December 2015 a case was filed against Areva, alleging corruption related to the €1.8 billion purchase of three uranium mines in 2007.

Effective oversight process by the local authorities is subverted either by duping state officials with deceiving front companies, such as the UN registered World Sports Alliance (WSA), now recycled into a cover for mining companies, or by corrupting them through the payment of ‘cash bonuses’. After a profitable exploitation of resources, companies such as Areva – a French multinational group specialising in nuclear power – abandon the country, leaving behind nuclear contamination without having launched any of the promised investments.  ……… https://wikileaks.org/car-mining/#areva

February 8, 2016 Posted by | AFRICA, secrets,lies and civil liberties, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

AREVA and URAMIN scandal, Wikileaks,

 logo-WikileaksThe most powerful nuclear company in the world, AREVA, abandoned its Central African Republic exploitation without having launched any of the promised investments after an enormous political and financial scandal, amidst a social and environmental crisis, with skyrocketing radioactivity levels (up to 30 times the natural radioactivity in the zone) and literally transporting its former employees back to their homes like cattle. The following documents show the constant disdain of the company towards Central African Republic institutions and its population, and the neocolonial conditions of exploitation of its mines in Africa. ……. https://wikileaks.org/car-mining/#areva

February 8, 2016 Posted by | AFRICA, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Wikileaks Drops Another Damning Trove Of Secret Trade Deal Documents

logo-WikileaksWASHINGTON — The latest trove of secret trade documents released by Wikileaks is offering opponents of the massive deals currently being crafted by the Obama administration more fodder to show that such agreements can impact United States laws and regulations.

The latest leak purports to include 17 documents from negotiations on the Trade In Services Agreement, a blandly named trade deal that would cover the United States, the European Union and more than 20 other countries. More than 80 percent of the United States economy is in service sectors.

According to the Wikileaks release, TISA, as the deal is known, would take a major step towards deregulating financial industries, and could affect everything from local maritime and air traffic rules to domestic regulations on almost anything if an internationally traded service is involved.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/03/wikileaks-secret-trade-deals_n_7504548.html

June 15, 2015 Posted by | Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Australian govt lying to public about Julian Assange

Foreign Minister Bob Carr… claimed last week that there was “not the remotest evidence” of any US government desire to prosecute the WikiLeaks founder.

Fresh call on Assange ‘espionage’ SMH Philip Dorling July 2, 2012 THE head of the United States Senate’s powerful intelligence oversight committee has renewed calls for Julian Assange to be prosecuted for espionage. The US Justice Department has also confirmed WikiLeaks remains the target of a criminal investigation, calling into question Australian government claims the US has no interest in extraditing Mr Assange. Continue reading

July 2, 2012 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, secrets,lies and civil liberties, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

USA govt plans secretly to gaol Julian Assange

On Monday, WikiLeaks began releasing more than 5 million Stratfor emails which it said showed ”how a private intelligence agency works, and how they target individuals for their corporate and government clients”.

Revealed: US plans to charge Assange, SMH, Philip Dorling, February 29, 2012 UNITED STATES prosecutors have drawn up secret charges against the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, according to a confidential email obtained from the private US intelligence company Stratfor.

In an internal email to Stratfor analysts on January 26 last year, the vice-president of intelligence, Fred Burton, responded to a media report concerning US investigations targeting WikiLeaks with the comment: ”We have a sealed indictment on Assange.”

He underlined the sensitivity of the information – apparently obtained from a US government source – with warnings to ”Pls [please]
protect” and ”Not for pub[lication]”. Continue reading

March 3, 2012 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Iran’s on ground nuclear facilities destroyed by Israel: Wikileaks

The emails, snatched by hackers, could unmask sensitive sources and throw light on the murky world of intelligence-gathering by the company known as Stratfor, which counts Fortune 500 companies among its subscribers.

WikiLeaks: Israel destroyed nuclear facilities in Iran Anti-secrecy group releases email by US-based global security firm linked to CIA, citing Israeli intelligence source who claims Israelis destroyed all Iranian nuclear infrastructure on ground weeks ago Ynet  02.27.12,   Israel News sraeli commando forces destroyed, with the help of Kurdish rebels, all of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure on ground, an email by a US-based global security analysis company released by WikiLeaks on Monday claims. Continue reading

February 28, 2012 Posted by | Iran, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Wikileaks reveal France’s fears about safety of Pakistan’s nukes

France unsure about Pakistan’s nuclear deterrent: WikiLeaks  | The Times of India May 29, 2011, ISLAMABAD: France, not sure about the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons, has decided against supplying nuclear energy technology to it, according to a secret US diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks. Continue reading

May 30, 2011 Posted by | Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Wikileaks reveal global concerns about Pakistan’s nukes

VIDEO WikiLeaks: US raised concerns about safety of Pakistan’s nuclear assets, NDTV   May 26, 2011 New Delhi Defence Minister AK Antony voiced India’s apprehension on Wednesday about the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal and said it was a matter of global concern. “Naturally, it is a concern not only for us but for everybody,” Antony said in response to reporters’ questions on whether the security of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal was under threat in the wake of terror strikes such as the one at the Mehran naval air base in Karachi on Sunday night. (Watch – India’s new worry: Are Pak’s N-weapons safe?)

US cables, accessed exclusively by NDTV through WikiLeaks, show that this concern is indeed a global one and has been voiced by several countries since the present government took over in 2008. Several cables between US embassies and Washington during in a year-long period between mid 2008 and mid 2009, reveal that the US had raised concerns about the security of Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal with Pakistan and China and had sought to reassure a worried Russia……
WikiLeaks: US raised concerns about safety of Pakistan’s nuclear assets

May 26, 2011 Posted by | Pakistan, safety, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Wikileaks reveal security worries about Japan’s nuclear plants

 Cables Show Worry Over Japanese Nuclear Plants  WSJ.comBy YOREE KOH,  MAY 8, 2011 TOKYOThe Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident exposed flaws in the Japanese government’s measures to guard the country’s reactors against earthquakes and tsunamis. U.S. officials in recent years also have worried that Japanese officials haven’t taken enough precautions to protect the facilities from terrorist attacks, according to diplomatic documents released over the weekend on the WikiLeaks website.

A series of cables released by WikiLeaks shows U.S. officials repeatedly prodded their Japanese counterparts to beef up security—and were regularly rebuffed….A message sent from the U.S. embassy in Tokyo on Feb. 26, 2007, informed the State Department about “U.S. concerns about physical protection of nuclear facilities.”…

U.S. Cables Show Worry Over Japanese Nuclear Plants – WSJ.com

May 9, 2011 Posted by | Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Wikileaks revealed details of Al Qaeda’s nuclear threats

Abu al-Libi, al Qaeda’s third in command and “operational chief” before he was captured in 2005, reportedly said the nuclear device was “located in Europe” and would be used in retaliation over bin Laden’s death, according to the leaked files

WikiLeaks docs: Nuclear reprisals if bin Laden killed, Privacy Inc, by Declan McCullagh, 3 May 11, Recently-released WikiLeaks documents show that detained al Qaeda members have predicted nuclear reprisals if Osama bin Laden were captured or killed.

The classified Defense Department files, obtained from detainee interviews at the Guantanamo Bay prison, were released by the document-sharing Web site a week before the raid in Pakistan that resulted in bin Laden’s demise. Continue reading

May 4, 2011 Posted by | 2 WORLD, safety, Wikileaks | Leave a comment

Julian Assange will appeal against extradition to Sweden

JULIAN ASSANGE: Why is it that I am subject – a non-profit, free speech activist – to a $360,000 bail? Why is it that I am kept under electronic house arrest when I have not even been charged in any country?

Wikileaks founder to appeal extradition decision, ABC  25/02/2011 TONY EASTLEY: A London court has ordered that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange should be sent from the UK to Sweden to face allegations of sexual assault.His defence lawyers have argued the former computer hacker won’t get a fair trial in a country where they say he’s regarded as “public enemy number one”.Mr Assange has already flagged he’ll appeal against the British ruling. Continue reading

February 25, 2011 Posted by | civil liberties, UK, Wikileaks | Leave a comment