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Posted at 5:23 PM ET, 12/14/2010

Bailing out Assange: What was Michael Moore thinking?!

By Kevin Huffman

In his latest episode of jack-assery, Michael Moore has shelled out 20,000 pounds in bail money for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. As has been well chronicled, Assange is sitting in a London jail awaiting extradition to Sweden on rape charges. The Post reported this morning that Assange's attorney has decried the "Dickensian conditions" at his London jail, noting he is "kept in solitary confinement, maintained in a lone cell, denied a computer and permitted only heavily censored reading material."

I found this shocking, since I don't remember a single Dickens episode, not even Bleak House, in which the protagonist was denied a computer. Yet despite being confronted with a story of such abject cruelty as Internet-denial, I wasn't moved to write a check for 20 grand.

So why would Michael Moore (and Bianca Jagger and various other gullible American and British socialites) personally pay for Assange's release? In a belligerent Daily Kos diary, Moore asserts that Assange is under attack solely because he had the courage to expose American war crimes. Moore writes:

We were taken to war in Iraq on a lie. Hundreds of thousands are now dead. Just imagine if the men who planned this war crime back in 2002 had had a WikiLeaks to deal with. They might not have been able to pull it off. The only reason they thought they could get away with it was because they had a guaranteed cloak of secrecy....

So why is WikiLeaks, after performing such an important public service, under such vicious attack? Because they have outed and embarrassed those who have covered up the truth.

Well, that and allegedly assaulting innocent women (one awake and one asleep).

I'm not sure which piece of the whole episode offends me the most: Putting up bail money for an accused rapist you don't know simply because you like his politics? Defending the release of documents that harm confidential American diplomacy (i.e. the very efforts that may help keep us from entering unilateral wars in the first place)? Or the crushing blow this strikes against my deeply held belief that the far right is crazier than the far left?

Reading the "You're my hero, Michael!" comments on DailyKos made me throw up in my mouth a little. I don't know whether Assange rapes innocent women. I do know he hurts American interests. And both of those are very good reasons to not send him money.

By Kevin Huffman  | December 14, 2010; 5:23 PM ET
Categories:  Huffman  | Tags:  Kevin Huffman  
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Next: Henry Kissinger and the Jews

Comments

Good for you, Mr. Huffman. You clearly state that Assange and those who support him harm American interests. That is the bottom line.

Posted by: outcast | December 14, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Jack-assery? I believe the correct descriptor is jack-holery, and it is you, Mr.
Huffman, who deserves that sobriquet.

Posted by: rgv1129 | December 14, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who says "makes me throw up in my mouth a little" makes me throw up in my mouth a little. C'mon. Be a journalist.

Posted by: lancemonotone | December 14, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

When people have money, they sometimes do things with it that baffle the common folk.

Remember that Michael Moore's number one interest is...Michael Moore. This action buys him publicity, keeps the media writing about him, and allows him to hang around at the fringes of the WikiLeaks story for a while. It may look crazy but if Michael Moore were mainstream, we never would have heard of him.

Posted by: MsJS | December 14, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

What was he thinking? Does anyone even need to ask that question anymore? Michael Moore is self-promotional and anti-American, end of story.

Posted by: bluewinterwaves | December 14, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

What was he thinking? That a man who has not been charged with a crime should not be in jail? That Assange has done far more to expose lies and corruption in the last year than all the mainstream media has combined? That he is being hounded from pillar to post by the rulers of industry and states for challenging their ability to manipulate us with lies and that is unjust?

What are supposed reporters doing going along with his persecution and the open collusion between industry and government to squelch the release of information? That is the better question. Got any answers?

Posted by: dehall | December 14, 2010 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Haha. U mad, Kevin Huffman? Problem?

Assange is a patriot, deal with it.

Posted by: DavidDavidson_ | December 14, 2010 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Michael Moore reminds me a lot of the people who were willing to give Roman Polanski a pass on the rape charges because he was such a great artist.

Posted by: jnc4p | December 14, 2010 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Why does WP publish such crap?! Michael Moore did what every red-blooded American can and should do: stop the imperialist USA, defend those who expose its hegemonic (and crazy ambitions), and applaud those who help expose US global ambitions.

Truman once wrote that the US should govern the world; Jesus Christ, it cannot even govern itself. Thankfully: it is tanking, financially, morally, and militarily, and eventually US taxpayers will figure out that they have been taken for a ride by the military-intdustrial complex, the idiots in the "stink" tanks, and the special ethnic interests.

The US should retrench, cut its military budget by 90%, and try to save the country before it goes down the tube.

Posted by: Rechtsstaat | December 14, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

"Putting up bail money...simply because you like [Assange's] politics" offends Mr. Huffman.

What is offensive about that? It's a principled act. I did that for people who were arrested for opposing the Vietnam War. Does this offend you as well?

You speak of harm to "American interests." There is no such thing as "American interests." There are the interests of the bankers and businessmen who run this country, and there are the interests of American working people, and the two have nothing in common.

Exposing the shenanigans of the US government may harm the interests of the bankers and businessmen who profit from US hegemony, but it's a positive gain the rest of the American people.

Congrats to Julian Assange on being granted bail. May the appellate court uphold the decision.

Posted by: Barryc76 | December 14, 2010 6:11 PM | Report abuse

Who's Michael Moore?

Posted by: oldno7 | December 14, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Kevin Huffman should be ashamed to call himself a journalist! The Washington Post should be ashamed for giving him column inches to fill! I thought all Americans were taught that George Washington couldn't tell a lie? That Truth and Liberty actually stood for something in the USA. What Wikileaks is doing is giving you all the opportunity to take a long hard look in the mirror and decide for yourselves what type of world you would like your children to grow up in. I was taught that lying is wrong, the patsy career journalists that no longer investigate and expose are doing you a disservice, they are betraying the ideals your forefathers fought for! I ask you a simple question, would you rather be lied to or know the truth? That is the choice presented to you. If you choose to know the truth then you should applaud Bradley Manning, Julian Assange and people like Micheal Moore because they are taking great risks in standing up for your freedoms. The very same freedoms your founding fathers fought for and based the ideals of your country on. If truth, liberty and justice matter to you applaud those that fight to bring them to you.

Posted by: dannymega | December 14, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

For every American you can name that died because someone exposed the government lying to us I'll name 1,000 who died BECAUSE the government lied to us.

If he committed rape he should go to jail and do the time, that goes without saying. But plenty of American officials have blood on their hands for sending our soldiers to phony wars or attacking innocent people.

"Beware of he who would deny you access to information, because in his heart he dreams himself your master."

Posted by: caveat-lector | December 14, 2010 6:47 PM | Report abuse

I just re-read kevin Huffman's article and at the bottom he states:
"Reading the "You're my hero, Michael!" comments on DailyKos made me throw up in my mouth a little. (who really believes this? You are a liar sir!) I don't know whether Assange rapes innocent women. I do know he hurts American interests. And both of those are very good reasons to not send him money."

Please elaborate and tell us Mr Hoffman how the truth hurts American interests? Secrets and lies are shadows that only conceal wrongdoing! Or maybe the "American interests" you speak of are the massive profits arms manufacturers/Haliburton enjoy in exchange for the mangled bodies of your young soldiers. Rinse your mouth out and start telling the truth!

Posted by: dannymega | December 14, 2010 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Have you canceled your subscription and stopped reading stories from the New York Times, and the Guardian etc.? I suspect not. Just like the proverbial car accident you can't stop looking.

Sure Mr. Assange is guilty of providing the information (Not Stealing it)... but all that you and every other American is doing is reading it. You are innocent.

Oh and when wikileaks gets its hands on Chinese or Russian files, will you be so quick to try to shut him down? I highly doubt it. Hippocracy at its purist.

Posted by: klucky | December 14, 2010 6:58 PM | Report abuse

I dont know Kevin Huffman and this is the first piece of his, to my knowledge, i have read.

He is (obviously) a liberal (i am not), yet he was able to express a counter-orthodox opinion. To my mind, thats what true journalist's should be doing; analyize facts objectively and report. Not, as is common, interpret and spout opinion piece party line skree
.
If Kevin Huffmans approach were to spread, it would gives journalism a good name.
Nicely done, Kevin.

Posted by: kevinrog | December 14, 2010 7:06 PM | Report abuse

I dont know Kevin Huffman and this is the first piece of his, to my knowledge, i have read.

He is (obviously) a liberal (i am not), yet he was able to express a counter-orthodox opinion. To my mind, thats what true journalist's should be doing; analyize facts objectively and report. Not, as is common, interpret and spout opinion piece party line skree
.
If Kevin Huffmans approach were to spread, it would gives journalism a good name.
Nicely done, Kevin.
______________________________________
Ha ha you obviously go bowling with him, how pathetic!

Posted by: dannymega | December 14, 2010 7:12 PM | Report abuse

The real story is how did the woman who accuses Assange of continuing sexual intercourse after the condom was damaged, know that it was damaged during intercourse. Why isn't the news investigating her claim, and how she could possibly be aware that it happened before withdrawal. We are adults, here. Seriously, doesn't this sound like she's making this up at the request of the CIA?

Posted by: AnnsThought | December 14, 2010 7:18 PM | Report abuse

In a world of instant messaging,reality TV, and gotcha media, are we really ready for "On the Fly Justice"? I feel Michael Moore's Views on this matter, are setting us back to "Old Time Western justice". The Hangman's Posse, chasing us down on hearsay, or because of an anonymous tipster, whether it is proven true or false, The townspeople will watch us hang from a noose at the public square. We have Due process for a reason. I am all for justice, but if someone accuses me of wrongdoing, He should at least have the guts to let me face my accuser. I certainly hope this isn't where we are headed as a society, that anonymous accusations can be taken as fact. That information can be taken out of context, and released as gossip..I believe that our government should be held accountable for any wrongdoing, And should be transparent, But to have our play book handed out for the public view in "real time" in the middle of the game, is nonsensical, and dangerous, and is leading us away from due process and fairness, and back to "Git a Rope" Western Justice. For the record, I not a republican or a Democrat.

Posted by: middleman45 | December 14, 2010 7:24 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Huffman,

Firstly, Dickensian in this context refers to very dreary, oppressive conditions. Assange, apparently, is under those conditions. Computers didn't exist when Dickens was writing, but oppression did. Try to keep up, rather than offer feckless condemnations.

Your assertion that Wikileaks harms American insterests is unfounded. Nowhere in your rambling screed do you isolate any proof of this claim. Rather, I can easily support the claim that Wikileaks operates in the interest of all Americans:

-we now know that our government gives money to corrupt "allies" who then give it to terrorist organizations.

-we can prove to the nation and people of Iran that it is not the US or Israel, but Saudi Arabia that is attempting to drive us toward conflict with them.

-we now know that Hamid Karzai is a mental midget in whom our leaders place almost no confidence.

All of this points to a set of foreign policy decisions which indicate a myopia at the federal level regarding our national interests. Why am I not concerned about the state of diplomacy moving forward? Because our state department has done an abysmal, unforgivably incompetent job at using diplomacy to get what we want. We are the world's laughingstock and ATM; now our people know it.

Your anger at Wikileaks, and willingness to condemn Mr. Assange prior to trial, are indicative of your membership in a lapdog press, which eats the crumbs dropped to it by a hamfisted, foolish state apparatus. Wikileaks is the future of journalism, and thankfully the future involves more hard truths than those to which we are presently exposed.

Posted by: purpledrank | December 14, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

"Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves." Abraham Lincoln
For any American that would like to see for themselves how Hilary Clinton instructed the State Department to collect DNA samples, credit card numbers and other information about Ban Ki-moon and other UN diplomats they can do so here: www.wikileaks.ch

Posted by: dannymega | December 14, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Do you realise your the stereotypical yankee sellout that they are talking about. Paid to lie in the media about what the public really think.
You are clearly leaving out information so you don't have to comment on it. Sounds familiar to what the US Generals said about the brutal killings of the Iraqi civilians.
I quote "We are unsure on the circumstances surrounded those event"...Its quite clear what happened...try watching the Apache recording.
Women make up allegations everyday about men...for whatever reason. These women have yet still to reveal themselves and provide proof of the accounts. Whereas I believe Assenge has about 250,000+ pieces of evidence against his war.
The public need to realise the media is not trust worthy any more, controlled by those who we need to fear.
#SuppotAnonOps

Posted by: axnony | December 14, 2010 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Dear Mr Hoffman, you have been irrefutably owned by purpledrank's article above. However, all is not lost, you have the opportunity to redeem yourself. In order for it to happen you need to be very very brave. Are you brave Mr Hoffman? You should start by writing a letter of apology to Mr Micheal Moore for your article above. Secondly you should ask yourself why you chose to be a journalist in the first place. If it was to chisel out a successful career for yourself you should hang up your laptop. If you wanted to make the world a better place you should start telling the truth! It may seem strange at first and you may well be overcome with various conflicting emotions but stick with it, persevere and you will truly prosper and who knows - one day you may well change the world for the better! Think about it - what have you got to lose?

Posted by: dannymega | December 14, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

Innocent until proven guilty, I believe the maxim runs. To call Assange an "accused rapist" is to admit on the face of it that he is as yet innocent of any crime.

WikiLeaks seems to have found its niche as a conduit between "whistle blowers" and the media. It's hard to argue that such a mechanism is a bad idea. Unless you believe in having a completely corrupt national press with no external check on its collusion with government, of course. Is that what you're coming down to here?

Less supportable are the Bradley Mannings of the world, who illegally hand over enormous troves of classified information to anonymous persons with scant idea of all that is in them.

Bradley Manning has given WikiLeaks what innovators sometimes call a "success disaster."

Posted by: fzdybel | December 14, 2010 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Why is it that not a single American newspaper reports the real charges against Assange? Both his supposed rape victims admit that they consented to have sex with the guy. One of them accused him because a condom broke during intercourse (and she thinks that the accident was deliberate, even though she did not get pregnant nor did she get any disease). The other one accused him to have had one protected intercourse and a second unprotected one (still consensual and not leading to any pregnancy or disease). These facts are on all European newspapers - why not on our free press?

Posted by: HaveaLife | December 14, 2010 8:39 PM | Report abuse

We do have espionage laws and it would be appropriate to enforce them. If PFC Manning divulged information considered "secret" then he should be prosecuted to the fullest extent. If Assange similarly disseminated such secrets than he should also be prosecuted. That Michael Moore wants to pay bail for this fellow - well who cares really - what matters is the pursuit of justice whether it be for rape or espionage. The notion that all truth should be exposed and that act somehow protects us is really pretty naive but entirely in character for Mr. Moore who has always maintained the liberal notion of intellectual superiority over those actually elected and entrusted to govern.

Posted by: billthebeast | December 14, 2010 8:48 PM | Report abuse

I'm not all that much a fan of Mr. Moore, but I did take the time to read his piece over at the Daily Beast, and it points to a whole different perspective on the so-called rape investigation. Assange has clearly put himself in an unbelievably stressful situation and some of his decisions aren't all that well thought out, but Moore's assertion that transparency might have prevented the escalation of the VietNam war and the second Iraq war and even possibly some of the worst terrorist attacks against us - these seemed like reasonable assertions.
To take the popular position without digging for the larger picture seems irresponsible, and if anything, that's what Moore wants us to be looking at.

Posted by: thanksforfish | December 14, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse


Sunshine is the best disinfectant.

Assange is a hero, Obama should give his fake peace prize to him.

All JA did was advertise anonymous, robust publishing. You could have done this with cryptome.org and the mailbox and some stamps.

Even without the InterTubes making publishing free and robust, you could have posted mail deadtree paper to several physical newspapers. (If you were so inclined, and retro.)

Sunshine is the best disinfectant.

Deal with it. Anonymous robust leaking is here forever.

Posted by: revtkatt | December 14, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

From a former Y.I.P. Southeastern Minister of Communications: Job well done Mr. Assange, Wikileaks and friends. Mr. Moore is right on target with his support and the United Seates is better served because of this fine work. Many thanks and much respect to all of you.

The U. S. Government breaks law with regularity, without compunction and with no impunity. Yet, a Private (a Private?) revealing lie after lie, gives We The People a parcel of truth, before only available to 3 million sets of Government eyes (though no eyes of the people) and suddenly the Government is screaming for blood.

With literally millions of Government people given previous access to the exposed files there can be no doubt nothing contained in the information package was not already well known in the spy world.

No, it is We The People who must be kept in the dark.

Otherwise, with truth on the Peoples’ side we would make educated voting decisions rather than fall victim year after year to the politicians who lie to us in order to maintain their power.

The accused Private could not have revealed anything new to those in the know. Only we, the U. S. Citizen know nothings, are seeing hidden information. And, not all that hidden since millions of “trusted government eyes” access the information at will.

Mr. Assange, please, next assignment, for some real inside revelations publish a U. S., Lt. General’s (or above) secret file: Then We The People will have a better idea of what our Great Nation is really all about.

In the day of the Yippy, had we access to the technology of today, we Americans would have ended the Vietnam war much more quickly. In fact, it was “truth” that ended that ugly war. When the American people finally realized everything from the phony Gulf of Tonkin provocation to the glorious war stories spoon fed by the U. S. media were all a pack of lies, the war’s ending was in sight.

Again, Mr. Assange, to you Mr. Moore and the rest of the modern day Rebels: many thanks, much respect and keep on keepin’ on.

Posted by: steveswimmer1 | December 14, 2010 9:04 PM | Report abuse

I agree, Mr. Moore gives liberals a bad name. Ridicu-list.

Posted by: DPoniatowski | December 14, 2010 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Huffman seems unaware that the people most outraged by this are a certain type of pro-war big-government establishment liberal firmly entrenched in both political parties. They prefer to be called neoconservatives when they wish to be labeled Republicans.

I don't trust Assange, but Assange does not associate himself with Michael Moore, who is a publicity hound and documented liar.

A well thought-out Conservative article on Wikileaks and Big Government can be found at The American Conservative.

http://www.amconmag.com/blog/2010/12/14/classifying-boondoggles/

Posted by: OrwellHewitt | December 14, 2010 9:24 PM | Report abuse

The real danger here-the item that should raise a red flag for anyone that loves freedom-is the forces that have arrayed against Assange-how a sex charge suddenly became a global issue but not until the leaks happened. The government of Sweden and of the UK and US and so many others moving in multiple ways to contain this guy. The next release will involve major banks-and why would we want to stop that? It's a guarantee that the banks ion question have swung into action in many ways-legal and illegal to get this guy.
FOR THAT REASON ALONE WE SHOULD STAND WITH HIM.
The merit of what he released is a totally different issue and it was not he who acted illegally but rather -if any thing is illegal here it is the action of those that leaked it to him. They are not crushing this mans freedom but the freedom for all of us is endangered.And that should make everyone stand up and take notice.
The second issue is really several issues-Should he have done this? Were laws broken? Was it morally right to release this? Would it have been morally right not to? Where these releases actually harmful? Most important: Do they endanger our troops?

Posted by: jm777 | December 14, 2010 9:41 PM | Report abuse

OH and God Bless Michael Moore

Posted by: jm777 | December 14, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I was pretty disgusted with Michael Moore's action, too. Especially with his wildly irrational speculation that Wikileaks could have prevented the invasion of Iraq. Of course it is wrong for Moore to publish such a patently fallacious argument in support of financing a criminal who exposes military and diplomatic secrets.

Assange may be too immature to realize it, and who knows what Moore's psychological/mental handicap is, but both the military and the diplomatic corps have legitimate needs for secrecy. Assange has done great harm to both with his criminal recklessness. By no means does he deserve to be held up as a hero for free speech and openness, since in reality, he is neither.

On the contrary: REAL whistleblowers are already complaining that he is giving whistleblowers a bad name. Worse yet, this is sabotaging efforts in Congress to get real legal protection for real patriots who are whistleblowers.

Posted by: Syllogizer | December 14, 2010 10:11 PM | Report abuse

"If Assange similarly disseminated such secrets than he should also be prosecuted."

If that would do the trick, you'd have seen indictments by now.

Right now they're interrogating Mr. Manning, and you can be sure they're looking for anything they can find to implicate WikiLeaks or Assange in the original misappropriation of the classified information. The weight of legal opinion appears to be that short of such a smoking gun (or "dripping gun" as the case may be) there will be no indictments forthcoming.

Posted by: fzdybel | December 14, 2010 10:13 PM | Report abuse

As a moderate Democrat, I must tell my liberals like dannymega to stop it with this nonsense. If it were your son or daughter that had singed up for the military or state department, even against your wishes, and their life was put in danger by these people, I guarantee you'd put a higher value on their life than your so called "truth." Wikileaks is not in this to show the American people how their government is mistreating them, they are doing it to tarnish and smear and give aid to those who oppose the United States at home and abroad. To purpledrank's point about tangible evidence of harm or potential harm; from John Kerry who campaigned hard against the Iraq war in 2004, 1. social security of American individuals have been made public (what does that have to do with any political tactic of the United States? The clear intent is to cause harm to those who's numbers are released) 2. Technical roadside bomb information has been posted, allowing people who no previous training to plant and detonate them both here and overseas 3. Damaging information not about the US specifically but it's secretly positive relationships with country's such as Yemen have been released threating the stability of their alliance with us and their county as a whole (unless you don't want them looking for real terrorists in their country, and would prefer the world let anyone train freely for and prepare attacks on America)4. Kerry also said that this leak is not reveling any "truth" about American policy American lying, but rather an "anarchical act by someone who want attention." Mr. Kerry summed it up perfectly. My final questions to Wikileaks supporters would be 1. what is the political value of reveling how to make a roadside bomb or releasing someone's social security number. 2. What "truth" do you think was released to the American people though this illegal leak?

Posted by: Standardman | December 14, 2010 10:20 PM | Report abuse

Jealous of real journalists much, Mr. Huffman?

Your article mentions Michael Moore's contribution of 20,000 pounds to Julian Assange's bail. Perhaps you might have visited Mr. Moore's website were he mentions his contribution of 20,000 dollars. NEWS FLASH-dollars do not equal pounds!

My Lord, is even the most basic fact checking verboten at the WP?

I'll trade Moore and Assange for 20,000 of you, you lickspittle 'journalist' hack.

Posted by: glenncg | December 14, 2010 10:24 PM | Report abuse

"what is the political value of reveling how to make a roadside bomb"

It helps the public to understand how very simple it is to make an IED. People fond of sending our army into other countries don't want the public to understand what a losing proposition this is, i.e. the realities of asymmetric warfare.

Posted by: fzdybel | December 14, 2010 10:37 PM | Report abuse

Mr Huffman,
Journalism 101 - check your facts .... apparently you missed that class.

1 - Michael Moore has not "shelled out 20,000 pounds [sic] in bail money" for Assange. He has offered "USD$20,000" - big difference (check the exchange rates), and shows that, apparently, you haven't even bothered to read his statement, preferring instead to cut'n'paste the mistakes of others - sloppy, lazy work.

2 - Assange has not been charged with rape (or "rapes", as you have incorrectly stated .... or anything else for that matter) and, according to a statement issued by the Swedish Director of Prosecution, Ms. Marianne Ny, is only wanted for questioning regarding investigations "due to suspicions [sic] of sexual crimes in Sweden". Human Rights lawyer, Geoffrey Robertson, is on record as saying “We doubt whether this actual category of rape would be rape under English law”. It would appear that these "suspicions" are tenuous at best but, that is a matter for the Swedish Courts to decide. However the fact remains, at present no charges have been laid and he is only wanted for questioning.

3 - You seem eager to assume both guilt and innocence with emotive hyperbole. Your piece is deliberately littered with baseless, and incorrect, prejudicial phrases like "rape charges", "assaulting innocent women", "an accused rapist" and "Assange rapes innocent women" - standard fare for tabloid hacks doing a hatchet job. But can you say, with absolute certainty, that these allegations are not politically motivated and that these women are, perhaps, more naïve than "innocent"? While Ms. Marianne Ny has stated that she has not been subject to "political pressure", it is nonetheless interesting to note that, according to numerous sources, Assange's rape accuser, Anna Ardin, who describes herself as a "CIA agent, rabid feminist / Muslim lover, a Christian fundamentalist, frigid & fatally in love with a man, can you be all that at the same time ...", appears to have lost interest in the case, may no longer be cooperating with prosecutors and has left Sweden.

Mr Huffman, it would seem that you have very little regard for journalistic integrity favouring instead to employ a tawdry tabloid toolkit of pompous breast-beating and frenzied flag waving over pursuing truth, freedom and justice .... and therein lies an unsettling irony.

Posted by: GraemeH | December 14, 2010 10:52 PM | Report abuse

fzdybel:
Actually, when it comes to roadside bombs, the mainstream media has done a very good job explaining what the realities are. I would have thought 9/11 did also in regard to Afghanistan only (Iraq was a misguided war). But I suppose I was mistaken.

Posted by: Standardman | December 14, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Hey Huffman, how about you take 2 minutes to find out what you are talking about. You make a fool of yourself here. Here is what the "rape" charge is all about.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6B669H20101207

PS Washington Post, how about doing some real reporting sometime.

Posted by: frankieCO | December 14, 2010 11:02 PM | Report abuse

"the mainstream media has done a very good job explaining what the realities are"

Which leaves us here having this neat conversation about why public domain information got a "classified" stamp put on it.

Posted by: fzdybel | December 14, 2010 11:09 PM | Report abuse

I applaud Michael Moore. Our entire foreign policy needs a re-work.

Posted by: shangps | December 14, 2010 11:12 PM | Report abuse

To paraphrase the great Matt Taibbi back at the start of the U.S. invasion of Iraq ... After reading Mr. Huffman's wonderful piece of U.S. government propaganda, I’m more convinced than ever: The entire mainstream U.S. media press corps should be herded into a cargo plane, flown to an altitude of 30,000 feet, and pushed out, kicking and screaming, over the North Atlantic. http://bit.ly/gCUday

Posted by: HonestBroker1 | December 14, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

Assange is accused of RAPE!! All this back and forth seems to forget that. He should be held in jail until his trial.

As for WikiLeaks, if they are such truth seekers, why are they only seeking to expose the US. Assange is from Australia, correct. Why is he not exposing Australia or Germany or Russia or China? Why only target the US? Are we the only country with secrets? What is his real agenda?

As for Mr. Michael Moore, he can do whatever he wants with his money, because he lives in the greatest country I know...

Posted by: LillyK22 | December 14, 2010 11:30 PM | Report abuse

"Why is he not exposing Australia or Germany or Russia or China?"

No leaks from those places yet. WikiLeaks has published some stuff leaked from other countries, in their prior operations.

The guy who did the leaking in this case was the guy who picked out the US as a target. Maybe you should be asking Bradley Manning what was on his mind.

Posted by: fzdybel | December 14, 2010 11:43 PM | Report abuse

One needn't ask what Moore was thinking? He's been writing and speaking precisely what on everything from his blog to Countdown. And making a mighty good case I might add.

Posted by: daphne5 | December 15, 2010 12:45 AM | Report abuse

Thanks Mike,

Rape charges? uhm ... yeah convenient ...
The likes of which go un-investigated by the dozens every day

Just call'em a "sex-fill-in-the-blank" Why not call the guy a pedophile?

Ewww ... throw'im in the brig!

Manufactured consent ...? You bet.

And for the "love it or leave it" right wing-NRA nuts duped into propping up the military industrial complex?

Please get a clue. You have no idea how idiotic you look at once decrying government tyranny while you're doing everything to prop it up.

Posted by: toddio | December 15, 2010 1:35 AM | Report abuse

Leak! Baby, Leak!

Posted by: toddio | December 15, 2010 1:41 AM | Report abuse

good lord!! is this what the wapo has come to? i'll take this guy's job for 2/3 his money and actually do some thinking and research about what i say. from what i've read, assange was preparing to do a release of some big bank's doings behind the scenes. interesting to me how the gov't. couldn't stop him, but now the swiss-do i hear big money interests-are leaking to him the real truth about the order of things during his 'timeout'. despite moore's bail money, he's still locked up on the word of two women who both of whom seem to lack any corroboration for their versions of the alleged criminality. what bleating sheep we have for a citizenry these days.

Posted by: avanti77 | December 15, 2010 1:50 AM | Report abuse

LillyK22,

Assange has been accused (and convicted it would seem) of "rape" with a "trial by media" when in fact it's simply an old fashioned smear campaign tactic probably instigated by those with the most to lose (or the most to gain-the press!) However the documents offered in the UK court Tuesday by the Swedish Prosecutors curiously make no mention of any instance of "rape". Surprise, surprise! A nebulous "unlawful coercion" is as close as they got and that is very different from "rape". He's not been charged with anything, they only want to question him. Read this Reuters piece before making any hasty judgements - it contains researched facts, not uninformed opinion, then make up your own mind.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6B669H20101207

Even the woman involved is not alleging that she was raped by Assange. According to Swedish Police transcripts, the two parted friends and she even bought him a train ticket home after the "rape". Yet Mr Huffman continues to perpetuate the "official party" misinformation and myths right here on this page! The way he tells it, you'd think that Assange was a serial rapist who horrifically and violently raped both women as they screamed helplessly! From official police reports, including statements from both women, we know this to be nothing more than media fuelled hysterical nonsense - nothing of the kind happened. And then Mr Huffman tries to emotionally blackmail his readers by suggesting that if they don't swallow his spin, then you're un-American! A very cheap, dirty trick and a trap for the unwary! Last time I heard, Americans stood for truth, justice and freedom, qualities which are noticeably lacking in this trite little opinion piece. Given the factual errors alone, how it ever got past the editors is beyond me - but perhaps The Washington Post has had to cut back on their editorial staff.

And BTW, if you want to find out how WikiLeaks is affecting the rest of the world, read the newspapers from other countries. Many have English versions online. I think you'll find that no one is immune from the fallout. It's also a good way to gauge the truth in what your media feeds you.

Posted by: GraemeH | December 15, 2010 2:09 AM | Report abuse

I do not even know where to begin with you sir. Firstly any reasonable journalist would attack an issue, not the persons who have taken a stand that they feel right because it's not how you feel. Secondly, any reasonable person can see that the acts upon which these rape charges are based would not constitute rape in the UK or the US for that matter, never mind that you don't refer to the as yet tried accused as a rapist. What are you thinking? So it's now Anti-American to want the truth? It's now Anti-American to feel betrayed by our own government? It's now Anti-American to be upset that 95% of every dollar we earn goes to 1% of the population? Perhaps the truth would have kept us out of Iraq ... lies didn't.

Posted by: pete33 | December 15, 2010 2:10 AM | Report abuse

What were you thinking Mr. Huffman?

Releasing someone on bail doesn't mean you find him neither innocent nor guilty. It means that you allow him to prepare defense. Mr.Assange is not arrested on rape chargers, he presented himself on british police in relation to *questioning* from Swedish authorities about a rape. The incident was described as sex that started as consensual but later (i.e. the next day) it become unconsensual. Doesn't this stikes you a bit odd?

Do you actually believe that should there be no wikileaks he wouldn't have been granted bail?

And one more thing: In a striking coincidence, a man charged with murdering his wife on the honeymoon, was released on bail.

Posted by: cindy2222 | December 15, 2010 4:32 AM | Report abuse

These are the same warped individuals who went to bat for rapist Roman Polanski. I am liberal and also believe in an open society. When Iran and North Korea and China start being "open" too, I'll be a proponent of complete transparency in government. Let's see the Austalian worm take on some of the really tough cases. Maybe he can "leak" some documents pinpointing Osama Bin Laden's location. (And I can't wait to hear the outcry from Moore when his next book goes on-line, sans royalties,or his sources are outed after he promised them anonymity.)

Posted by: mullingitover | December 15, 2010 5:42 AM | Report abuse

If one or to women scorned call your a rapist that those in fact prove the accusation to be true. The female prosecutor in this sordid case. while working on a law involving sex for hire wrote a report (which is in the public domain) that if a woman accused a male of rape he should be arrested regardless of the circumstances and no apologies offered if he proved to be innocent. It will give woman time to think (do not know what she is supposed to think about, perhaps to make the accusation believable). The most astonishing fact is why the Swedish tabloid have not investigated this case and why the judiciary have not sacked this woman. The two young women had more or less stalked J.Assange during his stay n Stockholm, the older even offered him to stay in her flat. When these two women found out that they both had had sex with the same man the older persuaded the younger to make a complaint with the police and thereafter decided to join in to give more weight to the accusation. The older girl, 31 year, an feminist activist working for the socialist party,had been an equal opportunities delegate to the student fraternity and on her personal blogg outlined 7 ways to snare an unfaithful male in a rape accusation.

Posted by: jibsail | December 15, 2010 5:53 AM | Report abuse

Correct the first line in my previouse blog to read; If one or two women scorned call you a rapist that does NOT in fact prove the accusation to be true

Posted by: jibsail | December 15, 2010 6:01 AM | Report abuse

wow so many people who hate america in america . honestly if you think socalism works move to a place socalism exist. if you think assange is a patriot id ask you to grab a dictonary . if you think a guy who makes a movie about bashing capitolism , but benifits from it , is not looking out for only himself you might want to check yourself in . regardless of what you think the world will change as america receeds. china doesent give 1/10 of what the us does in aids work in africa and other charitable actions. and things will get ugly. you will look back at how during a liberal democrats presedency, the first black presedent in our history, a white guy from europe made his administration look like a joke . all he has done is made it more likely that obama will be a one term presedent and no one takes us seriously as a nation.

Posted by: wech0201 | December 15, 2010 7:32 AM | Report abuse

The terrorists clearly have won when the cherished right to a trial on the charge,s and to confront evidence in an impartial forum, are so blithly disregarded-not to mention the freedom of the press.
This man is not accused of anything, but wanted for questioning.
He is not a rapist,or even accused of same.
The same inquiry was launched on this incident when he opened the iraqi tapes.Where did that go?
All Americans should fear when the heavy hand of oppressive government comes down on any individual.it hurts, and you are defenseless except for the constitution.If govt is allowed to do this to one of us, it does it to all of us.

Posted by: theopaine | December 15, 2010 8:56 AM | Report abuse

The truth of what really goes on in various administrations harms their interests, good.
As for the rape, the prosecutor said in the first instance there was no case, Only wikilead forced the hypocrtical nations to insist on what action they could take to stop truth.
Now the U.S. wants to make a new law so Osange can be prosecuted here, messengers get punished for conveying their messages!

Posted by: gany1 | December 15, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

"I don't know whether Assange rapes innocent women. I do know he hurts American interests."

1. What peculiar wording. What constitutes an "innocent" woman in these circumstances? Rape is either rape, or it isn't. The "innocence" of the victim is irrelevant.

2. As I understand it, Assange is being held in jail without charges. Bail is definitely appropriate. He will be electronically monitored. What is the problem?

3. What American interests have been hurt so far? Be specific.

Posted by: Reason7 | December 15, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

It's time to grow up, Mr. Huffman; surely you are not so naive.

Did good, Michael.

Posted by: fedup3 | December 15, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

If Assanage was being prosecuted or imprisoned for the acts of Wikileaks I might be supportive of him. He was not. He was sought by Sweden in connection with alleged sex crimes. He was arrested and held by the UK pending extradition. Some of my fellow liberals are so obsessed with hatred for this country and the Bush administration they are prepared to oppose investigation of a sex crime. What is, however, truly disgusting is seeing my fellow liberals happily attacking the victims who have accused Asanage based upon nothing but the word of his lawyer. Michael Moore is an embarassment who has damaged the very interests he seeks to support with his attention-seeking behavior. Those of you attacking the victims are no better than the conservatives you despise.

Posted by: craigjjs | December 15, 2010 10:34 AM | Report abuse

What hurts American Interests more:

An illegal war in Iraq, something WikiLeaks has exposed as is the call of every patriot.

The continued killing of innocent civilians in Iraq and Afghan and the continued disparagement of Muslims by the Christian talban in America.

Denying the freedoms of every person in this country to contribute to the defense of their own country solely based on sexual identity.

The continued holding of prisoners in Gitmo, that is after detainees were held in other countries under even worse circumstances

Torture.

or do you all agree with the New whacked out Tea Party Representative who says we should censor the US Media.

Posted by: racerdoc | December 15, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

What hurts American Interests more:

An illegal war in Iraq, something WikiLeaks has exposed as is the call of every patriot.

The continued killing of innocent civilians in Iraq and Afghan and the continued disparagement of Muslims by the Christian talban in America.

Denying the freedoms of every person in this country to contribute to the defense of their own country solely based on sexual identity.

The continued holding of prisoners in Gitmo, that is after detainees were held in other countries under even worse circumstances

Torture.

or do you all agree with the New whacked out Tea Party Representative who says we should censor the US Media.

Posted by: racerdoc | December 15, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Huffman, I hope you don't fancy yourself a reporter.

Assange is NOT an accused rapist. There are no charges against him. He is wanted for questioning in Sweden with regard to two incidents of sexual relations with women, under circumstances that apparently do not breach the law in any other country. There is no implication, not even by Sweden, that he engaged in what in America is considered rape.

As for Moore supporting his bail, it is Moore's money. Assange and WikiLeaks have simply posted material that was forwarded to them by someone fed up with what our Government was hiding.

By your "outrage", we can suppose that you were also against the release of the Pentagon Papers, the release of the Nixon Watergate tapes, or revelations concerning Iran Contra. And it must have galled you that Pat Tillman's parents wanted the truth to come out regarding the death of their son.

Some American you are! Time to get back under your rock.

Posted by: joachim1 | December 15, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Well put. Michael Moore is a buffoon.

It is interesting is that Wikileaks has not released much new information (maybe new details, but nothing truly new), yet the public has received this information with a range of reactions from Moore's "this proves the US is a giant conspiracy mired in illegal activites" to "this proves nothing and Assange is bent on harming American interests". While I am in the latter camp, it seems I am in the minority and I find it fascinating that so many seem to hold the conspiracy/new world order/US is equivalent to Roman-British-you name it imperialist empires view of the world.

Posted by: West_Seattle | December 15, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Thank you for all of the above posts that support openness and honesty. There is only one true path and that is the pursuit of truth.

For those of you that truly believe your basic freedoms are better protected without oversight or accountability I recommend the following site: http://wikileaks.ch/cablegate.html

Happy reading and remember THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE!

Posted by: dannymega | December 15, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Another lapdog pundit outs himself. I think it's safe to say that we will never get any penetrating insight out of Mr. Huffman. We can all sleep comfortably at night knowing that he will always only report on those things that the U.S. government-approved topics.

What gets me about all these "journalists" and pundits who are outraged by Assange and WikiLeaks is that their outrage is not directed at the American citizens who actually did the leaking, but towards the people who dared to publish the leaked information. So even though Wikileaks is not an American organization and it's mission is to promote transparency on world events, the outrage is that they didn't perform the self-censorship that has become the norm in the American media and just sit on the information. How dare they actually publish the amazingly illuminating facts that were handed to them on a silver platter by discontented American citizens.

It's a new kind of American journalism that Huffman is promoting. It's the kind of journalism that you see in Russia and Egypt and China and any place where the media is just a mouthpiece for the rulers. It's journalism and punditry like this that enables pointless, bankrupting wars to drag on for over a decade with no end in sight. It's journalism like this that enables society to be structured so that 99% of the wealth goes to 1% of the individuals. Nobody asks the tough questions. Nobody digs beneath the surface. Everyone stays within their prescribed area of allowable inquiry.

Posted by: skrut003 | December 15, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Lol, Julien Assange is hurting American interests? No, America is hurting American interests. Julien is doing nothing more than revealing statements already made by U.S. officials. Calling Assange a terrorist is TRULY laughable to anyone with a lick of common sense.

Good job Michael Moore, keep up the good work.

Posted by: Sanlhazzard | December 15, 2010 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Moore asks: "Just imagine if the men who planned this war crime back in 2002 had had a WikiLeaks to deal with."

Well, we would have been informed (as we now are by Mr. Assange's leaks) that WMD in fact existed in Iraq at the time of invasion, and well after.

What? You didn't read that part? Well, I understand it's a lot of documents, but it is a delicious irony that the Left's "Bush Lied People Died" chant is now the dog not barking from thousands of leaked documents.

Posted by: NNevada | December 15, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Reading the "You're my hero, Michael!" comments on DailyKos made me throw up in my mouth a little. I don't know whether Assange rapes innocent women. I do know he hurts American interests. And both of those are very good reasons to not send him money.

===========================================

It's just more evidence that most of those who cheer on the jackwagons at Wikikleaks do so because they want to hurt American interests.

I'm also glad that you accessed that digital sewer so I don't have to.

Posted by: bbface21 | December 15, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Too many freedom-hating losers in these replies, too many people who just hate thinking for themselves, like "Officially Approved Government Stenographer" Huffman.

I'm guessing the same know-nothings bashing Wikileaks for "putting lives in danger" had NO problems with the Bush Jr/Cheney Administration's deliberate outing of Valerie Plame, an action which put the lives of her double-agent contacts at risk, and made it even harder to recruit such sources.

Those who hate freedom should move to where such a concept isn't a reality, North Korea and Saudi Arabia are probably more to the liking of those gleefully backing the Government line on this issue.

Posted by: kingcranky | December 15, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

"What was Michael Moore thinking?!"

Gee, I'm not sure, Kevin.

Maybe Moore was thinking that standing up for freedom and against totalitarian "1984ish" government is a good thing?

Maybe Moore was thinking that these "rape" charges were bogus and trumped up, with some apparent CIA involvement?

Maybe Moore was thinking that the man who exposed the lies, the deception, the deceit and the arrogance of those who killed thousands and wasted billions deserved to be supported?

Maybe Moore was thinking that the horrendous crimes and the outright deceit of those who started the wars and occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan should be exposed and that the courage of Assange needed to be rewarded?

Here's a better question: Why is Kevin Huffman ignoring the criminal behavior and lies of those people who caused these disasters and focusing all of his anger and rage on the man who risked everything to bring this to light? Is Huffman just cozying up to those who he thinks will eventually invite him to their fancy parties and give him a nice job in the future?

Posted by: snesich | December 15, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

The President of the U.S. claims he has the right to be judge, jury and executioner of people not even charged, tried or convicted of a crime, for the time being the crime he claims these Executive Privileges for is "suspected terrorist". So, those people that could possibly help the citizens of the U.S. to see what our gov't is doing in secret, such as Mr. Assange, can be assassinated by our President. If I were Julian Assange I would keep my location hidden for what remains of my life. Revenge is mine, sayeth our politicians. How sad for our dying country that we should condemn others for helping us to discover what the true agenda of our corporate owned government really is.

Posted by: bcreek1 | December 15, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Noting the abject failure of basing our national security on secrecy and warfare, is it not appropriate to consider the alternatives of honesty, transparency, diplomacy and possibly even democracy. We've supported the military-industrial approach and been rewarded with a disproportionate distribution of limited resources on this tiny planet and a truly horrendous waste of resources and lives, to what purpose? We've certainly not demonstrated the moral superiority of "freedom" or "democracy" nor have we gained any converts to these highly valued pretensions. Come on citizens, put your money where your mouth is and give peace a chance.

Posted by: IchabodCrane1 | December 15, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Dear Mr Huffman, another morsel for your table.

"Information has never been so free", declared Mrs Clinton. "Even in authoritarian countries, information networks are helping people discover new facts and making governments more accountable."

She went on to relate how, during his visit to China in November 2009, Barack Obama had "defended the right of people to freely access information, and said that the more freely information flows, the stronger societies become. He spoke about how access to information helps citizens to hold their governments accountable, generates new ideas, and encourages creativity. The United States' belief in that truth is what brings me here today."

For the full article go to:http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2010/12/20101279213237416.html

Posted by: dannymega | December 15, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

WikiLeaks: Swedish government 'hid' anti-terror operations with America from Parliament!

Now it all makes sense!

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/wikileaks/8202745/WikiLeaks-Swedish-government-hid-anti-terror-operations-with-America-from-Parliament.html

I still challenge any poster to this blog to name the American interests at risk from these truths!?

Posted by: dannymega | December 15, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

U.S. Air Force bans troops from reading The New York Times! http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6BD6CI20101214

Yes folks in the land of the free and the home of the brave! WAKE UP PEOPLE!

Posted by: dannymega | December 15, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Michael Moron does not think. Instead he bloviates left wing anti-americanism. Query? Where the capaitalist hating gas bag get the capital to bail out his fellow American hater?

Posted by: Rotbart | December 15, 2010 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Great riff.

The throwing up thing was a bit much but in keeping with the theme. I laughed out loud by the end. That is one of the tests of good writing. Thanks.

Posted by: renderle | December 16, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

To the last comment posted by renderle. How ignorant you are to laugh at the undermining of your democracy and the truths your founding fathers fought for. At the end of the cold war America had a choice, you could either choose to follow the very concepts that George Washington and Ab Lincoln stood for or follow a path of imperialistic aggression. Unfortunately your weak kneed leaders chose the latter. As your respectability wanes so will your power, what a wasted opportunity, I truly mourn the passing away of the America that could have been.

Posted by: dannymega | December 17, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

To the last comment posted by renderle. How ignorant you are to laugh at the undermining of your democracy and the truths your founding fathers fought for. At the end of the cold war America had a choice, you could either choose to follow the very concepts that George Washington and Ab Lincoln stood for or follow a path of imperialistic aggression. Unfortunately your weak kneed leaders chose the latter. As your respectability wanes so will your power, what a wasted opportunity, I truly mourn the passing away of the America that could have been.

Posted by: dannymega | December 17, 2010 3:30 PM | Report abuse

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