– Wikileaks and Julian Assange have been the subject of intelligence exchanges between Australian and the United States for more than two years, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has revealed.
The WikiLeaks publisher was also the subject of Australian intelligence reporting from Washington shortly before he sought political asylum in Ecuador’s London embassy.
In a Freedom-of-Information decision yesterday, Foreign Affairs confirmed to “The Age” the existence of an intelligence report concerning WikiLeaks and Mr Assange cabled to Canberra from Australia’s Washington embassy on June 1st.
Mr Assange, who had been unsuccessful in his legal fight to avoid extradition from Britain to Sweden to face questioning about sexual assault allegations, sought political asylum in Ecuador’s embassy 18 days later.
Foreign Affairs has also confirmed that US-Australia intelligence exchanges on WikiLeaks date back more than two years, by revealing the existence of two intelligence reports sent from Washington to Canberra on August 4th and 25th, 2010, in the immediate aftermath of the transparency website’s publication of secret US military reports on the war in Afghanistan. One newly released Australian diplomatic cable also shows that the Washington embassy received confidential information concerning the involvement of the FBI in investigations targeting WikiLeaks as early as July 29th or 30th, 2010.
However, the details of this exchange have been redacted by Foreign Affairs on the grounds that disclosure of “assessments or comments by foreign officials” would damage Australia’s international relations.
Other Australian diplomatic cables previously released to “The Age” reveal that, in December 2010, the embassy confirmed that the US Justice Department was conducting an “active and vigorous inquiry into whether Julian Assange can be charged under US law, most likely the 1917 Espionage Act”.
In another document released by Foreign Affairs, former foreign minister Kevin Rudd wrote on November 15th, 2011, to seek former attorney-general Robert McClelland’s view on reports that “the most likely route to a successful prosecution would be to show that Mr Assange had acted as a co-conspirator – soliciting, encouraging or assisting (US Army private) Bradley Manning, to obtain and provide the documents” – Philip Dorling


About Jumpin' Jack Cash

Deep connections are the most important aspect of my existence. I don’t care if people don’t know what they want. I love books. I’m cynical of love stories, although I’m romantic. I adore gardens. I like women who challenge me. I love the rain as an excuse to stay inside and dream. I'm furiously impatient. If I ask you a question best to tell me the truth as I'm likely to already know the answer. I'm a carnivore. I continuously underestimate the magic of fresh flowers in my home. I love warm rain in the summer. My mood elevates to epic proportions when the sun shines. Tell me not to do something and I'll do it twice and take photos. Running is my antidepressant. I loathe lies. I rarely forgive a lie. Loyalty and honesty are my most noble virtues, and I value them more than anything in other people. I love to love, and am able to fall in love very quickly, although it's only ever happened once. I understood myself and fixed myself only after destroying myself. My greatest excitement comes from deliberately getting lost in foreign cities. I can be extremely loud and frighteningly silent. I hate insinuations. I love storms. Justice for all. I'm a proud man, but welcome the influence of the feminine soul. I have two sisters. I’m a dreamer. I’m a deep thinker. Don’t deal with guilt trips or drama that well. I'm extremely stubborn and persistent. I'm brilliant at keeping secrets. I love driving. I become absolutely and completely lost while watching a burning fire. When the toast pops from the toaster I’m never ready and shit myself. I play the guitar, but require much improvement. Solitude and warmth of the sun are perfect together. I’ve been married once and now divorced. I’m a music junkie. Chocolate mousse is the shit. I curse too much. I find it difficult to make friends. I spent four years as a firefighter. I’ve run my own company since 1991. Bright lights, big cities. I’ve been an executive producer of a feature film. Some people don’t care, and that’s the biggest let-down of the human race. There are cures and solutions for many evils, but no remedy for the worst of them all - the apathy of human beings. The sound of the Italian language being spoken is as good as my favourite music. I hate corrupt cops. I relentlessly and passionately pursue anybody and anything that sets my soul on fire. I'm a dog lover, and all my dogs are considered family members. I have an obsession with photography. I have some close friends who are household names, but shall always remain anonymous. I’m crazy but not lazy. Losing a soulmate has hurt me badly. My two young sons are the nucleus of my universe. I love airports. I love freedom. If you are dishonest or disloyal, I can erase you from my life and memory immediately and permanently. I yearn to explore, dream about and discover as many friendships, deep connections and places, one possibly can in a lifetime.
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