Yes, WikiLeaks Led to the Revolt in Tunisia. At least according to New York Times editor Bill Keller, who just last week blasted WikiLeakes chief Julian Assange in a massive profile, calling him "arrogant, thin-skinned, conspiratorial and oddly credulous.
" But that doesn't mean the work Assange's organization does can't spur political change. "The simple nuts and bolts answer to that is, in the case of the Wikileaks cables in Tunisia, Wikileaks certainly did make a difference," Keller told NPR today. But that doesn't mean he agrees with Assange. God forbid! In conversation with Terry Gross on Fresh Air, Keller is clear to again differentiate the work of the New York Times -- journalism, in his mind -- from the work of WikiLeaks. Keller again illustrates how he and his organization butted heads with Assange, and ultimately taught him a lesson: But Keller does give credit to WikiLeaks for sparking change in Tunisia, which has since arguably reverberated in Egypt: [via]
Overseas Press Club of America. Wikileaks founder Julian Assange In recent weeks, the news has been dominated by the Wikileaks disclosure of classified State Department documents on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Most recently, in the name of freedom of speech, defenders of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange have been mounting hacking attacks on those trying to disavow him, ranging from Amazon.com and PayPal (for cutting off Wikileaks access) to the Swedish prosecutor who accuses him of rape. Should the OPC's Freedom of the Press Committee be defending Wikileaks and Assange? We haven't done so, on several grounds. For one thing, we three FOP co-chairs don't agree with Assange's basic position that all secrets should automatically be exposed; if spilled, some would damage national security and risk lives, and we believe the New York Times did the right thing in weeding out such material before printing the Wikileaks dump.
But this is not an open-and-shut case, and clearly an issue of moment for practicing journalists. New York Times Editor Bill Keller Says Julian Assange Was 'Arrogant' and 'Conspiratorial' (Newser) – New York Times editor Bill Keller's lengthy essay on dealing with WikiLeaks and Julian Assange continues to ricochet around the blogosphere, with most of the attention focused on his not-so-flattering assessment of Assange as a person.
He describes the WikiLeaker as "arrogant, thin-skinned, conspiratorial, and oddly credulous" and says Assange became "transformed by his outlaw celebrity. " The WikiLeaks' honcho went from an unkempt "office geek" type to a "cult figure" with styled hair and a penchant for "fashionably skinny suits and ties," writes Keller. Bill Keller vs Wikileaks: Goodnight, Julian Assange, And Bad Luck. I’m loath to write again about Wikileaks, or about its pig-to-man founder, Julian Assange.
Not because I’ve run out of things to say, but because the response is so predictable when I do. Within minutes, the Assange fanboys – the Wikiliebers, if you like – will swarm into the comments, accusing me of unfairly slandering their hero. “He’s sticking it to The Man!” They’ll cry, “he’s disrupting the mainstream media!” They’ll holler, “it was a honeytrap!” No forest of Vanity Fair and New Yorker profiles or unrelated criminal allegations or hubristic statements about having “two wars I have to end” will convince the Wikiliebers of the truth: that Assange is an arrogant computer genius who began Wikileaks with the best of intentions but has since lost sight of his principles in the relentless pursuit of personal celebrity. But if I take some flak for my relatively inconsequential badgering of Assange, I can only imagine how much Bill Keller must be getting right now. Bill Keller: Colluding With WikiLeaks Was Fun at First, Then Annoying.
The Times just posted a lengthy article by executive editor Bill Keller, which tells the story of last year's WikiLeaks dumps through the eyes of the Gray Lady.
The piece will appear in this coming Times Magazine, but it's really worth reading now. The whole thing is interesting, from its depictions of WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange (he went from a being a disheveled "bag lady" or "derelict" who smelled "as if he hadn't bathed for days" to a stylish "cult figure" who was "evidently a magnet for women") to its lengthy explanation and eloquent defense of the Times' motives. The Times's Dealings With Julian Assange. Artwork by Jenny Morgan (left) and Daniel Gordon (right) I was interested.
The adventure that ensued over the next six months combined the cloak-and-dagger intrigue of handling a vast secret archive with the more mundane feat of sorting, searching and understanding a mountain of data. As if that were not complicated enough, the project also entailed a source who was elusive, manipulative and volatile (and ultimately openly hostile to The Times and The Guardian); an international cast of journalists; company lawyers committed to keeping us within the bounds of the law; and an array of government officials who sometimes seemed as if they couldn’t decide whether they wanted to engage us or arrest us.
WikiLeaks and Julian Paul Assange. The house on Grettisgata Street, in Reykjavik, is a century old, small and white, situated just a few streets from the North Atlantic.
The shifting northerly winds can suddenly bring ice and snow to the city, even in springtime, and when they do a certain kind of silence sets in. This was the case on the morning of March 30th, when a tall Australian man named Julian Paul Assange, with gray eyes and a mop of silver-white hair, arrived to rent the place. Assange was dressed in a gray full-body snowsuit, and he had with him a small entourage.