The secret diary of . . . Julian Assange

Last updated 05:00 08/06/2014
JULIAN ASSANGE: Finds time to sleep.

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This is how they do it. This is how they get at you.

They include New Zealand. There's no surprise about that. New Zealand has always been more than happy to play its part in dirty wars.

It fought in Vietnam. It turned a blind eye to the Timor atrocity. It made a national hero of an SAS operative in Afghanistan.

These are all matters of public record. But WikiLeaks has new evidence of New Zealand's role in shutting down channels of information about its secrets and lies.

I was recently approached to feature as a guest speaker at the New Zealand-Australia literary festival in London. I would appear via Skype from my rooms at the Ecuador embassy in London.

That offer was rescinded. My appearance was cancelled.

An investigation by WikiLeaks has revealed that top-level talks were behind the decision to silence me.

WikiLeaks can reveal the New Zealand government threatened to withdraw its funding of the festival if I were to appear.

WikiLeaks can name the person who gave the order.

It was Lockwood Smith's wife.

As the wife of the New Zealand high commissioner in London, Mrs Smith is well-placed to make such a threat. WikiLeaks understands she issued the ultimatum at a cocktail party.

She was obviously speaking on behalf of, and for, her husband.

As high commissioner, Lockwood Smith is a tool of western diplomacy. He is merely a clerk, answerable to higher forces in the US State Department and other, more discreet institutions.

And so here I stay, in my rooms at the Ecuador embassy, unable to leave, a prisoner of a handsome redbrick building in an expensive corner of London, deprived of freedom, deprived of sunlight and daylight, of company, of reality.

And the latest hand to lock the door is the hand of Lockwood Smith's wife. She will stop at nothing. Is she in Moscow right now, under orders to take out Snowden?

I look out the window. And then I close the curtains.




New Zealand. Petty, meddling New Zealand. Like all Australians, I grew up without ever giving a thought to New Zealand. It was as remote as the Middle Ages.

WikiLeaks has a lot more in its files about New Zealand. More embassy cables, more inside information.

New Zealand should be afraid. New Zealand is afraid. That's why it sent Lockwood Smith's wife out to a cocktail party.

Where was her husband in all this? It's interesting that he didn't appear at the opening function for the Australia-New Zealand literary festival - unlike his Australian counterpart, Alexander Downer.

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WikiLeaks understands Smith was at a private wedding in Portugal.

WikiLeaks can also confirm - through hours of poring through confidential messages relayed in embassy cables - that Smith is not just a tool of western diplomacy.

WikiLeaks can confirm he is universally regarded as a complete tool.

And meanwhile I stay put, an enemy of the state, the most dangerous man alive, a journalist, an activist, locked away behind closed doors at the Ecuador embassy in London.

Ecuador. It's even more obscure than New Zealand. But it gave me sanctuary. There are forces for good in the world. There are people and nations who uphold virtues, freedoms, principles of democracy.

And then there are people like Lockwood Smith's wife.

And people like her, people who attack my personality, trash it, to distract from the important work that WikiLeaks performs.



Steve Braunias is a Metro staff writer.

- Sunday Star Times

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