As we wait , you can read a full report of this mornings proceedings here.
We are now having a legal discussion over the issue of if a certain witness statement is admissable.
The statement is from a Mr El Masri, a German citizen, who was seized by the CIA and transferred to a US military "black prison," in Afghanistan.
An earlier witness John Goetz told the court that the WikiLeaks information showed the US government pressured Germany not to allow the prosecution of the CIA staff involved.
The prosecution is objecting to the statement being entered, saying it is irrelevant to any of the charges on the indictment.
Judge asks both sides if they can come to an agreement on the issue.
We are now to hear from the next witness, Daniel Ellsberg, by video link. He is California.
Me Elleberg not appearing on the court screens, technical staff investigating
We do however have sound and Ellsberg has just been sworn in and we are proceedings on audio-only.

Ellsberg tells the court, he was a US Marine office who later worked for the US government in Vietnam during the war.
He later made copies of secret documents and gave them to the New York Times, known as the Pentagon papers. He was later prosecuted under the espionage act.
These charges were dismissed due to government misconduct.
Ellsberg says he feels a very great identification with both Assange, and his source Chelsea Manning, who he says was willing to suffer imprisonment or even death to get information to the American public.
Witness says Assange has political opinions of "sophistication and complexity," many of which he agrees with, says his approach was "the exact opposite of reckless publication."
Ellsberg says that Assange exposed what were clearly war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, said that in his day these reports would be top secret, "but torture and assassination have so normalised the documents were available to a system used by 100,000 people."
Ellsberg says that the "Collateral murder" video clearly showed a war crime, his only issue was with the work "collateral" as it was clearly just murder.
He is glad the American people got to see it, he adds.#
He adds that the shocking thing was that no-one was punished for "the murders" as they did not reach US military "rules of engagement."
Ellsberg tells the court that during his prosecution he was not allowed to tell a jury why he did what he did, he says in US espionage cases matters of motive are not allowed not to be considered.
"Julian Assange could not get a fair trial in the United States, he concludes,"
James Lewis QC for US Government is now cross-examining, he starts by saying Assange, he starts by saying Assange is not being prosecuted for the "collateral murder" video or for publishing US military rules of engagement.
"Only for putting sources in danger"

Ellsberg says he thinks that is misleading.

Lewis replies he accepts Assange is charged with obtaining the documents, but not for publishing them.
Ellsberg: "but he is not only charged with those 3 counts, but there are also 15 other counts, so I'm not clear what point you're making?"
Lewis quotes the US government case, was that Assange "named people, who for their safety and freedom, gave information to the US military and their allies."
Lewis to Ellsberg, "Did you ever publish names in the Pentagon papers that could cause anyone to be put in danger?"

Ellsberg, "In one case, yes."

Adds he didn't want to be seen as editing the papers so named a CIA officer involved in assassinations, Lucien Emile
Ellsberg says he disagrees with the view that Wikileaks is not like the Pentagon papers, says this distinction is only held by those who want' to attack Assange and Snowden, and "do not understand what my motives were," notes WikiLeaks retractions.
Ellsberg says the US government could have stopped the sensitive names just being released just by giving the ones they were concerned about to Assange, instead "they did not lift a finger," so they could still have the chance to prosecute him.
"They didn't care," he adds, "they bear heavy responsibility," but notes that no-one has been shown to be harmed.
Lewis replies that many individuals had suffered harm after being named by Assange.
"Lewis mentions an Ethiopian journalist who was arrested and interrogated after being named in a WikiLeaks release."
Prosecution tell the court Osama Bin Laden had WikiLeaks material with him when he was shot by US forces in 2011.
Lewis reading out a long list of people who he says suffered because of Wikileaks and calls Ellsberg's evidence "absolute nonsense."
Ellsberg replies that these were people who wanted to leave their countries, asks "were any of these threats carried out?"

"The rules here are I ask the questions here," Lewis retorts.

Assange then intervenes from the dock, judge threatens to remove him from the court.
Ellsberg, "None of these hundreds of threats appear to have been carried out, if they were I would have a very different attitude." notes that people might have left their countries, how many refugees have been caused in the region "by US wars,"
Ellsberg: "They are pretending to care about the people in this region when their policies have show their absolute contempt for them over the last 19 years."

Lewis insisting on a yes are no answer to the question if anyone suffered?
The prosecution, "what about the disappeared people in Iraq and Afghanistan?"

Ellsberg "How do you know what happened when you can't find them?"

Defence interject prosecution admit they cannot prove this was because of wikileaks.
Ellsberg, "Even if it was true would be a small fraction of the number of people killed in US wars in the region."
Ellsberg asked if he had a copy of the encrypted Wikileaks dats, he replies "yes," says he later "destroyed it with hammers."

A fiery cross-examination ends.
On re-examination Ellsberg says that the P papers he leaked "contained thousands of names," says he was slandered all of his life, "until assange came along and they could use me a foil against him, I was suddenly a patriot."
Ellsberg rejects the idea "Pentagon papers good wikileaks bad," says that the charges against Assange and the government behaviour is the same in both cases.
Ellsberg, "I am still capable of being fooled by the government, like with WMD in Iraq, when they told me Wikileaks had blood on their hands I believed them, but 10 years later there is no evidence."
Defence ends, the judge asks Ellsberg to leave the room (cut the link for 5 minutes) while both sides decide if they have any more questions.
Defence asks if there is any evidence that deaths had occurred because of the WikiLeaks revelations at Chelsea Manning's trial, he says no, he thinks the threat was overplayed.
Judge sincerely thanks the witness, and he is dismissed.
Court told a potential witness may have been authorised to use the video link to watch proceedings, judge says thanks for the information and she will look into the matter.
After a dramatic afternoon session, the Julian Assange case adjourns until tomorrow morning at 10 am.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with James Doleman

James Doleman Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @jamesdoleman

14 Sep
Back at the Old Bailey where the extradition trial of Julian #Assange is just about to resume.
Judge updates the court on the suspected exposure of a member of one of the legal teams to Covid 19 they have tested negative do we proceed.
We are now awaiting today's first witness, Eric Lewis, who is testifying via video link.
Read 33 tweets
13 Sep
A wee story that came back to mind yesterday, it involves former News of the World Editor and chief advisor to Prime Minister David Cameron Andy Coulson, and, to this day is the funniest thing I ever heard in a court
Anyways, Mr Coulson was on trial at the Old Bailey for conspiracy to illegally intercept communications (phone hacking) and spent two days in the withess box being cross-examined
To almost every question his response was "I don't remember," or for variety "I don't recall.' He kept telling the court that he was a busy man, he couldn't be expected to remember if he had read this email or that email, he just couldn't recollect.
Read 16 tweets
9 Sep
Back in court at the Julian #Assange case, now awaiting the judge.
Judge Vanessa Baraitser enters court and proceedings begin.
Technical issues with the video link to the next witness causing a slight delay.
Read 26 tweets
8 Sep
Mark Summers QC for Mr Assange continues his examination of Professor Felstein.
The witness confirms he wrote a book about President Nixon trying to prosecute a journalist called Jack Anderson.
Feldstein says that an attempt by the US government to prosecute Anderson under the espionage act failed as publishing classified information was not a crime.
The administration then tried to smear him, and there was discussion in the White House of poisoning him.
Summers moves on to the charge that #Assange, "solicited classified documents," Feldstein says this "paints journalistic activities in a very nefarious light, we teach acquiring secret documents in journalism, school this in journalism school."
Read 23 tweets
8 Sep
In court now for the Julian #Assange hearing day 2, still awaiting the start of proceedings.
District Judge Vanessa Baraitser enters and proceedings begin.
Defence calls it's first witness of the day, Clive Stafford-Smith.
Read 26 tweets
10 Mar
Court rises as the presiding judge Lady Dorrian enters and day 2 begins.
Alex Salmond is in the dock, flanked by two court security staff.
The jury of 9 women and 6 men take their seats, and Alec Prentice QC, for the Crown, resumes his examination in chief of "Witness H," a former Scottish Government official
Prentice moves on to the day after the alleged attack and asks the witness if she attended a scheduled football event the next day, she says she did not "I felt sick, I wanted to throw up I didn't want to see him [Salmond]
Read 23 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!