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  #1  
Old December 22nd, 2010, 01:05 AM
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Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

I'd like to hear some HSers opinions on their stance on the Wikileaks controversy. Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

Without going into much detail at the moment, I will divulge that I'm more in the "hero" camp.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 01:08 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

Revolutions were started by men like him but not all revolutions are moral. Personally I say good for him, exposing the corruption in government and business. Sadly it won't do any good, they are all too rich and powerful to take down unless the entire world rises up against them. WWIII is going to fought on the economic battlefield.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 01:18 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

Assange isn't exactly following in the footsteps of Woodward and Bernstein. Is he really exposing corruption and government crimes or is he disclosing classified government information that should remain classified? I think that his website is disclosing classified information that may get Americans killed. I'm not ready to call him a villain, but I would prefer if his website was shut down.
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Old December 22nd, 2010, 01:28 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

Villain.

Real people getting hurt, sorry, I feel pretty strongly the guy's an a-hole.

If he has some cause related to something particular - even if it's freedom of information or whatever - do your thing & make your point. But I think it takes a real egomaniac to unload secrets held by the U.S. not just for itself, but in trust for others - world leaders, banks, etc. - all of which now must compensate.

Who is he to decide that complete transparency is the way we should live? My wife and I don't even run our *house* with complete transparency. I vote for people to run my government but I don't presume to think I'm capable of doing it myself, or separating the wheat from the chaff when going through miles of papers.

It's just horrible. Not that he's the only one, obviously somebody was the leak-er, maybe many somebodies, but if he wanted to make his point he could have done it with a scalpel and not a sledgehammer.

I'm rambling a bit, my point is in there somewhere.

And why the hell is he fighting extradition? If his Swedish accusers aren't even really accusing him, as he would now have us believe, then go, man up, and deal with it. Sweden is no great friend to the U.S. and has a historically strong protection of its free press. They'll protect him from the big, bad, U.S. of A., though he doesn't deserve it. So why not go? Maybe because he did something he shouldn't have done?

My ? He's an egomaniac who loves feeling like he rocked the boat. An egomaniac who apparently has trouble with women.

Well, now the rest of the world has to clean up his mess.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 01:32 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

I think that the media has become so inept and that countries are just used to doing X number of shady things (which include Y number of legitimate things) that someone needed to do something.

The media in this country, for example, is so completely useless that literally the Daily Show with Jon Stewart is more reliable and skeptical than the major networks. I've said it before, but I'll say it again, news channels that are based on making the most money possible are doing more damage to this country than anything Osama Bin Laden could dream of.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 01:37 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gulp View Post
I think that the media has become so inept and that countries are just used to doing X number of shady things (which include Y number of legitimate things) that someone needed to do something.

The media in this country, for example, is so completely useless that literally the Daily Show with Jon Stewart is more reliable and skeptical than the major networks. I've said it before, but I'll say it again, news channels that are based on making the most money possible are doing more damage to this country than anything Osama Bin Laden could dream of.
I can agree with this post 100% and still think the Wikileaks debacle will get real people needlessly hurt.

You can support the cause without celebrating the man or agreeing with his methods.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 06:59 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

More hero than villain. Remember why he released much of this stuff is because the US Government has been threatening him.

Also, I am not aware of a single American being hurt by any of his releases. If we can ignore American officials disclosing names of CIA agents and slap them on the wrist, why freak out over him so much?

Maybe, just maybe, if our media was doing 1/10 of it's job then maybe things like Wikileaks would not be necessary. He is an ass but last I checked thats not a crime, and he's not an American so he has not committed treason against the US.

The sad truth is that more than ever, whistleblowers have less protection than ever and someone needs to be a conduit for them because our media isn't reliable enough to be that conduit.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 07:49 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

He's a scumbag. We really don't need to know everything, he's going to accomplish little else but getting people killed. Terrorists are having a field day using knowledge he made public to plot attacks at the places that are weakest.

People's right to know, vs people's right to not get killed by terrorists, I mean be real.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 07:57 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

Quote:
Terrorists are having a field day using knowledge he made public to plot attacks at the places that are weakest.
Ok, can you point to one example? That's a pretty bold claim and I would like it to be substantiated in some way.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 09:03 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

I like the fact that the truth has finally been revealed, no thanks to the normal press. What's better - knowing, or not knowing? If we know, then we can fix the issues; If we don't know, then the issues go unnoticed and get worse. What he did was heroic, but he is not a hero. A hero does not flee the public and hide.

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Old December 22nd, 2010, 09:17 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

I would tend to be in the hero camp. Accountability is a good thing. WikiLeaks as a website serves as a safe anonymous warehouse, if you will, for whistleblowers to safely post information.

The Sweden charges are obviously false. They are looking for an excuse to arrest him. These charges show up right after he releases government documents. Something's rotten in Sweden.

Also, I can't help but admire the sheer audacity he has to fight the system. He is bringing more transparency to the government and many other organizations.

As far as American prosecution of WikiLeaks goes, what do you think will happen. I think that WikiLeaks would be considered a member of the press. They weren't engaged in illegal espionage. They just published what had been leaked. If you are going to prosecute them you are going to have to punish Der Spiegel, the New York Times, and the other newspapers that have also been given advanced copies of the releases. I don't like seeing the government going to such lengths to suppress the flow of information.
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Old December 22nd, 2010, 10:05 AM
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Re: Wikileaks' Julian Assange - Hero or Villain?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 'Scaper94 View Post
What's better - knowing, or not knowing? If we know, then we can fix the issues;
What issues? Troop deployment issues? Private banking issues? Was there a problem that I, sitting in my chair in my house, don't get to Monday-morning quarterback troop deployment in Afghanistan?

I'm not going to this thread, I've said my piece already. But some things are not public because they are not *meant* to be public.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jschild
I am not aware of a single American being hurt by any of his releases.
Jschild, did it pain you to write such a convoluted sentence?

Anyway. Carry on, all, throw the heroic Mr. Assange on your shoulders and dance around the bonfire.

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