Iceland may ban MasterCard, Visa over WikiLeaks censorship

Credit card companies that prevented card-holders from donating money to the secrets outlet WikiLeaks could have their operating licenses taken away in Iceland, according to members of the Icelandic Parliamentary General Committee.

Representatives from Mastercard and Visa were called before the committee Sunday to discuss their refusal to process donations to the website, reports Reykjavik Grapevine.

“People wanted to know on what legal grounds the ban was taken, but no one could answer it,” Robert Marshall, the chairman of the committee, said. “They said this decision was taken by foreign sources.”

The committee is seeking additional information from the credit card companies for proof that there was legal grounds for blocking the donations.

Marshall said the committee would seriously review the operating licenses of Visa and Mastercard in Iceland.

WikiLeaks’s payment processor, the Icelandic company DataCell ehf, said it would take immediate legal action against the companies to make donations possible again.

“DataCell who facilitates those payments towards Wikileaks has decided to take up immediate legal actions to make donations possible again,” DataCell CEO Andreas Fink said last week. “We can not believe WikiLeaks would even create scratch at the brand name of Visa.”

“It will probably hurt their brand much much more to block payments towards WikiLeaks than to have them occur,” Fink added.

 

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US contacts allies about WikiLeaks move

The United States has briefed its key allies, including Britain, France, Germany and Saudi Arabia ahead of the mass release of classified documents by WikiLeaks.

Whistleblower website WikiLeaks plans to release around three million leaked documents, including cables sent to Washington from American embassies throughout the world.

The website had previously posted online secret details of US military operations in war-ravaged Iraq and Afghanistan.

United States Department of State Spokesman Philip Crowley says the United States is “gearing up for the worst-case scenario.”

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Who Will Hold America Accountable for Its Crimes?

The website WikiLeaks has been garnering attention recently due to its publication of sensitive material that many in government (and elsewhere) would rather be kept private. Information on the site includes secret intelligence documents and studies commissioned by the U.S. government, which does not seem to appreciate the disclosure of such information, for fear of a public outcry over the content.

WikiLeaks was founded by human rights activists, journalists and experts in the intelligence field, with the aim of exposing intelligence agencies and governments that violate international law.

One week ago, the site published the video “Collateral Murder,” a tape whose images have since been shown on television networks around the world. It shows American military personnel in a helicopter carrying out the cold-blooded killing of twelve Iraqi civilians. WikiLeaks states that the incident occurred in 2007.

By publishing the video, the website has exposed the incident as a crime committed by the U.S. military in Iraq, as the camera mounted on a U.S. Apache military helicopter recorded the actions of the crew. Naturally, WikiLeaks has not disclosed the source that provided them with the tape, but the sound and visuals are so clear that there is no possibility of the U.S. Department of Defense refuting the fact of a crime having taken place or making skeptical remarks about the video being a fake.
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WikiLeaks: Collateral Murder

WikiLeaks has released a classified US military video depicting the indiscriminate slaying of over a dozen people in the Iraqi suburb of New Baghdad — including two Reuters news staff. Reuters has been trying to obtain the video through the Freedom of Information Act, without success since the time of the attack. The video, shot from an Apache helicopter gun-site, clearly shows the unprovoked slaying of a wounded Reuters employee and his rescuers. Two young children involved in the rescue were also seriously wounded. For further information please visit the special project website www.collateralmurder.com.

UK Trusted Borders: e-Borders Carrier FAQ, 1 Sep 2009

This confidential document details the UK’s mandatory air-craft passenger manifest reservation system “Trusted Borders/e-Borders“. It was written by the US military contractor Raytheon for airline companies in September 2009, and covers questions such as the practice of using false passenger manifests for heads of state (not permitted under the new system). The document was posted on the European Regions Airline Association intranet in what was meant to be a “members only” password protected area, but was discovered to be accessible by the editor of SecretBases.co.uk. On Dec 6, the UK Daily Mail ran a story on the subject, titled “Queen and all VIPs to be checked by National Border Targeting Centre“. As of Dec 7, the document has been removed, hence it’s appearance here, on WikiLeaks.
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Special Interests See ‘Classified’ Copyright Treaty; You Can’t

picture-221Want to know the Language of the ever-transforming proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement?

It’s classified. And, according to the Obama administration, it carries national security implications. According to leaked documents on WikiLeaks, the proposed treaty would require ISPs to terminate repeat copyright scofflaws, criminalize peer-to-peer file sharing, subject iPods to border searches and even interfere with the legitimate sale of brand-name pharmaceutical products.

But as it turns out, the administration has shared the secret treaty’s contents with more than three dozen individuals in the private sector, from the left and the right of the copyright debate. Those individuals include Business Software Alliance attorney Emery Simon, Google copyright czar William F. Patry and president of Public Knowledge Gigi Sohn.

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