Article Image
IPFS News Link • Wikileaks

Secret Power: The War on WikiLeaks

•, By Owen Bowcott

When the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was dragged out of Ecuador's London embassy in handcuffs three years ago, he was clutching a book given to him by the Italian investigative journalist Stefania Maurizi.

Gore Vidal's History of the National Security State argues that America's "military-industrial-security complex" exploits fear of the enemy in order to generate vast state subsidies. The Australian reinforced the message by shouting: "U.K. must resist."

Maurizi had brought the volume to help the fugitive Assange keep his mind active during the six years and 10 months he spent inside his cramped diplomatic sanctuary. It was one of many visits she made.

A journalist with a maths degree, she has written about cryptography. Her first contact with WikiLeaks was in 2009 when she received a call in the middle of the night asking for help verifying and interpreting a leaked audio file which hinted at Italian state-mafia deals during a rubbish collection crisis.

The following year Maurizi met Assange in Berlin. She had gone to talk to WikiLeaks about their Afghan War logs which contained secret files detailing Italian military participation in the war.

Assange had flown in from Stockholm where Swedish police had just opened an investigation into allegations against him of rape and sexual molestation; his luggage had gone missing when he arrived in Germany.