In an interview by spiegel.de, Krisstin Hraffnsson speaks about Julian Assange for the first time since his arrest. In an article seen here:
‘Everything Was Done To Make Julian Assange’s Life Miserable’
Hrafnsson: Well, it was a long prepared, politically motivated move. Already last year, the embassy started a war of attrition, psychological warfare: cutting off the Internet, installing cell phone jammers, restricting visitors, turning off the heating. Everything was done to make Julian Assange’s life miserable.“
He also talks about former Wikileaks staff receiving letters from the U.S. government basically threatening them to testify against Assange:
It looks like that when it comes to the criminal justice system in the U.S., in certain cases, it’s just a criminal system without justice. Look at the letters that have been sent out to several individuals who were connected with WikiLeaks and are now living in exile — some here in Germany, some in Iceland — threat letters with the offer of immunity if they work with the grand jury in Virginia in the persecution of WikiLeaks. In other words: If you don’t cooperate, we will go after you. I refer to this as the Don Corleone offer, which is from the Godfather, an offer you can’t refuse.
They asked him about #Russiagate as well and he spoke plainly:
DER SPIEGEL: Robert Mueller stated in his report that two Twitter accounts allegedly connected to a Russian intelligent service provided WikiLeaks with these documents. Has WikiLeaks been instrumentalized by Russian intelligence?
Hrafnsson: It is worth noting that Mueller declined the offer to hear Julian’s testimony. There is no evidence anything was sent by Russian entities that later was published. Mueller jumps to a conclusion, but it is not based on evidence. But usually there is an agenda attached to leaked information. There are sometimes individuals who leak information because they believe it is in the public interest to do so. They are very honorable whistleblowers, but you could call that an agenda as well. We have to scrutinize all leaked information and publish if it is in the public interest.
DER SPIEGEL: But it was more than just getting information. Assange was in contact with Donald Trump, Jr., Mr. Trump’s oldest son, during the campaign. Was he an active part in the political game?
Hrafnsson: There is nothing per se unusual about journalists being in direct contact with political campaigns. Trump Jr. was not given, in advance, substantive information. It is not a crime to inform a political campaign of information that has already been published.
DER SPIEGEL: How do you address suspicions that WikiLeaks has been fed and used by Russia?
Hrafnsson: I’m not a fan of Putin. I’m generally a skeptic of power. There’s definitely a lot of criticism, justifiably pointed at Putin’s Russia. However, according to the latest statistics, Russia fell from second to sixth place on the list of countries’ spending on military and defense, so now Saudi Arabia is No. 2. A few days ago, there were 37 beheadings in Saudi Arabia. We are talking about a nation that sends out assassination squads to torture and kill journalists. We are talking about the incubator of Islamist terrorism. So, why don’t we put things into perspective?
Just a quick overview of an important interview.
One thought on “Wikileaks New Editor,Krisstin Hraffnsson, in First Interview Since Assange’s Arrest”
Great overview! It seems to me beside the war of attrition, there is also a war on epistemology being waged: Assange’s offer to be interviewed not being taken up; Mueller not offering evidence to back up some of his conclusions.