Kevin Gosztola Profile picture
Managing editor of @Shadowproofcom. Co-host of weekly podcast @UnauthorizedDis. SPJ member.
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29 Sep
It’s the final week of witness testimony in WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition trial.

Court starts soon, and I'll have live updates on Day 16 in this thread. #AssangeTrial
“Even in administrative segregation, Assange would be able to communicate with other inmates through doors and windows of his cell.”

Yesterday, Judge Baraitser heard testimony from defense witnesses that exposed this as a terrible lie.

shadowproof.com/2020/09/28/def… #AssangeTrial
Maureen Baird, consultant and former warden for federal Bureau of Prisons, is the first witness. She was "warden and senior executive service warden at three various federal prisons." #AssangeTrial
Read 68 tweets
28 Sep
It’s the fourth and final week of witness testimony in WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition trial.

Court starts soon, and I'll have live updates in this thread. #AssangeTrial
Third week of #AssangeTrial ended with significant testimony from a digital forensic expert with background in US military, who used the US military's own expert witness in Chelsea Manning's trial to discredit password-cracking theory against Assange.
dissenter.substack.com/p/prosecutors-…
Recall, first charge brought against Assange by prosecutors—computer crime—was intended to delude world into believing US govt wasn't targeting Assange for journalism. But that was false. Always a smokescreen, and that smokescreen dissipated w/ Eller's testimony. #AssangeTrial
Read 65 tweets
25 Sep
Shifting US indictment Against Julian Assange

2018: Accused of violating three provisions of Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and conspiracy to defraud US government

2019: accused of generally violating CFAA (no longer specifically charged); defrauding US govt #AssangeTrial ImageImageImage
2020: computer crime offense is no longer charged against Assange as violation of CFAA. It's now only a generic conspiracy to defraud US govt charge.

Relevant time period is now 2009-2015 and does not necessarily depend on alleged Assange-Manning chat. #AssangeTrial
I'll point out this still has elements from the CFAA where it lists the counts, and then at the bottom it indicates Justice Department is only charging under 371—"conspiracy to defraud."

So it always was and it remains a frankenoffense. Image
Read 7 tweets
25 Sep
The fourteenth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates in this thread. #AssangeTrial
Yesterday, Dr. Sondra Crosby, who visited Assange multiple times in Ecuador embassy and Belmarsh prison, testified. One of only witnesses we'll hear from on symptoms of "psychological torture" he showed in embassy. dissenter.substack.com/p/essentially-… #AssangeTrial
Patrick Eller, who is a compute forensics expert, will take the stand. He reviewed evidence from Chelsea Manning's court martial that particularly relates to computer crime charge and is an expert witness. #AssangeTrial
Read 65 tweets
24 Sep
The thirteenth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates in this thread. #AssangeTrial
Yesterday, the court heard Assange was diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome.

In cases of Lauri Love and Gary McKinnon, the fact that they had Asperger's syndrome played a major role in US government being blocked from extraditing them.
shadowproof.com/2020/09/23/doc… #AssangeTrial
When McKinnon won fight against extradition, former White House adviser David Rivkin called it "laughable."

"Under that logic, anybody who claims some kind of physical or mental problem can commit crimes with impunity and get away with it." #AssangeTrial bbc.com/news/uk-199571…
Read 55 tweets
23 Sep
The twelfth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates. #AssangeTrial
Yesterday, lead prosecutor James Lewis asserted Assange exaggerates his symptoms of depression, and in fact, no one with severe or moderate depression could possibly function and run a media organization. shadowproof.com/2020/09/22/us-… #AssangeTrial
Housekeeping note: To receive written reports in your inbox after each day of court, go to dissenter.substack.com/subscribe. It's that easy to stay informed on #AssangeTrial
Read 54 tweets
22 Sep
The eleventh day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates today. #AssangeTrial
Professor Michael Kopelman, who is a forensic psychiatrist, will give evidence on Assange's clinical depression, risk of suicide, and how he the US government is targeting him for his political opinions. #AssangeTrial
Yesterday, in my written report, I paid attention to fixer who is closely tied to Donald Trump Jr. who threatened a political activist after she visited Assange to inform him that the Trump administration planned to expel and arrest him.
shadowproof.com/2020/09/21/tru… #AssangeTrial
Read 60 tweets
21 Sep
The tenth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly.

I'll have live updates today and throughout third week of #AssangeTrial.
It is Assange legal team's position that facts in the case have been presented in a "misleading way" by prosecution to help make it seem like Assange committed "extraditable offense."
Day 10 will feature Jakob Augstein, a journalist who worked for Der Freitag, and Professor Christian Grothoff, a computer science professor, who can show court US prosecution is misrepresenting facts related to publication of unredacted cable cache on the internet #Assange
Read 51 tweets
18 Sep
The ninth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I won't have live updates at this thread at the moment because the court's Crime Deputy Service Manager did not admit me this morning.
Constant glitches have existed in the system, and when I logged on the cloud video platform at the same time I do every morning, my name did not appear. I was hearing a repeated message that the host had not joined. Another journalist informed me they could not see me. #Assange
When I contacted the Crime Deputy Service Manager to let them know that I had an issue this morning, they said the rule is the rule. There was nothing I could say to persuade them to allow me morning access. I will miss this morning's witness. #Assange
Read 73 tweets
17 Sep
The eighth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates at this thread. #AssangeTrial
Yesterday, Pentagon Papers whistleblower @DanielEllsberg testified and exploded several myths about Assange and WikiLeaks, as well as his whistleblowing.

These myths are frequently deployed to make Assange and WL seem different than Ellsberg.

Report:
shadowproof.com/2020/09/16/pen…
Professor John Sloboda, who co-founded Iraq Body Count, takes the proverbial witness stand.

The Iraq Body Count project closely analyzed the Iraq War Logs. #Assange
Read 48 tweets
16 Sep
Housekeeping note: If you go to dissenter.substack.com/subscribe and sign up, you can receive my daily written reports in your email inbox each day of #AssangeTrial.
On Day 6, court heard from US defense attorney Eric Lewis about "substantial pressure" Assange will face to "plead guilty to lesser charges that result in a lower sentence." US has system where few defendants exercise right to trial.

More: shadowproof.com/2020/09/15/wit…
John Goetz, investigative journalist who was with Der Spiegel and worked on publications in 2010-2011, takes the proverbial witness stand. #Assange
Read 63 tweets
15 Sep
The sixth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates at this thread.
Yesterday, Assange extradition hearing resumed with testimony from US lawyer Eric Lewis. I paid particular attention to European Court of Human Rights decision that prosecutor seized upon to argue abusive prison conditions shouldn't prevent extradition. shadowproof.com/2020/09/14/at-…
Eric Lewis suggested in his testimony that Assange would be held at Alexandria Detention Center before trial if he were brought to the United States. He'd be in conditions that were "tantamount to solitary confinement," like alleged Russian spy Maria Butina.
Read 50 tweets
14 Sep
The fifth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates at this thread.
Eric Lewis, who is a practicing lawyer in United States knowledgeable on trial and sentencing issues, is expected to take witness stand. He'll testify on the ways the legal team believes Assange would be "exposed to flagrant denial of justice" if put on trial in US.
Lewis' testimony will likely return to the issue of Trump administration retaliation against the International Criminal Court (ICC), which is investigating US torture and war crimes, and how that connects to #AssangeCase
Read 43 tweets
13 Sep
In documentary from German public TV, former CIA director Leon Panetta acts as a public face for the US prosecution against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. The CIA has been possibly the most aggressive agency in the war on WikiLeaks.
ardmediathek.de/ard/video/Y3Jp…
Leon Panetta: “You have to remember that throughout the history of this country we have had spies, and we’ve prosecuted spies. I think it was in that spirit that everybody said, okay, we have another spy—Assange.”
Leon Panetta: "Assange is somebody who will sell somebody in his family if he think that, you know, that he is going to get some attention.”

(This is the kind of comment that legal team can cite in their argument that this is political prosecution.)
Read 6 tweets
10 Sep
The fourth day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates at this thread.
Yesterday, the legal team called Paul Rogers, a peace studies professor at Bradford University, to testify on how prosecution has targeted Assange for his political opinions.

One political opinion highlighted:

"...if wars can be started by lies, peace can be started by truth."
Also, on Day 3, defense witness Trevor Timm called attention to what New York Times Washington bureau chief Max Frankel declared about the role of "secrets" in his affidavit to federal court in Pentagon Papers case. #Assange
Read 24 tweets
9 Sep
The third day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates at this thread.
We are now starting 30 minutes later for the rest of extradition hearing so Assange can meet in person with his legal team each day.
On Day 2, human rights attorney Clive Stafford Smith testified in Assange extradition hearing.

Trump administration's retaliation against ICC officials investigating US torture and war crimes in Afghanistan—including by CIA—was highlighted by defense.

shadowproof.com/2020/09/08/ass…
Read 66 tweets
8 Sep
The second day of proceedings in the trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's extradition hearing will begin shortly. I'll have live updates at this thread.
Though from yesterday, this is a comprehensive list from Professor Mark Feldstein, witness who testified on Day 1 about frequency of published leaks in journalism.

The list includes over 20 examples from 1844-2018. #Assange
Feldstein declared in conclusion of statement to court, "[Trump] admin has already won partial victory."

And, "An informed public depends on free
& independent press that can serve as check on governmental abuse of power—kinds of abuses that WikiLeaks made public." #Assange
Read 57 tweets
7 Sep
The first day of trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s extradition hearing will begin at the top of the hour. I’ll have live updates at this thread when it begins.
We're still waiting to begin. Apparently, the temperature in Court No. 10 at the Old Bailey is too hot. Wonder if this will be a problem throughout the day that Assange must deal with while trying to follow proceedings.
"Court No. 10 here. Would it be possible to bring up Mr. Assange?"
Read 64 tweets
29 Aug
Congratulations to @jlpassarelli, as well as @SuzieGilbertLdn, for your work on "War on Journalism: Case of Julian Assange." It synthesizes many threads and condenses crucial details into an impactful 30-minute documentary.
Your conversation around the film has widened my perspective beyond fixating on the precedent that would be set if Assange is brought to the US for trial. As you say, there already has been a precedent set by pursuing him relentlessly through extradition, etc.
A Biden White House is unlikely to oppose Assange's prosecution simply because the Obama Justice Dept declined to charge him. When Obama inherited leak prosecutions from Bush Justice Dept, they continued them. We should prepare for this kind of continuity should Biden win.
Read 4 tweets
27 Aug
This wildcat strike by NBA and MLB players is what will defeat Donald Trump. It frankly does more to undermine all that Trump and the RNC stands for than anything the Democrats have done. And it expands the conversation beyond what’s comfortable to Biden Republicans. #NBAStrike
And now the news breaks that MLS players have joined
The WNBA is striking too. google.com/amp/s/www.ther…
Read 4 tweets
14 Aug
NEWS: Assange is still being held under an indictment that is null and void because the US issued a superseding indictment in June. Magistrate court judge acknowledges this abuse of process but doesn't seem to know what to do.
Since June 24—nearly two months—Assange has apparently been detained by UK authorities at the behest of the US government improperly. What does that mean for his rights to due process under any recognized legal norms that still hold force over this extradition?
The court hasn't even proven it can manage and operate live conference audio that journalists can tune into via phone. How do they expect us to believe they can reliably operate a live stream, which is essential as COVID-19 persists?
Read 5 tweets