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In an interview with CBS's "60 Minutes", Wikileaks founder Julian Assange said he loved watching banks "squirm" about rumors of his latest upcoming leak.  (Source: CBS)

Questions about Mr. Assange's motives (he has called himself an anarchist in the past) went unasked, as did the question of whether Wikileaks might be profiting off the stock shifts its leaks cause.  (Source: CBS)
Assange claims U.S. is utterly incapable of removing his site from the web

In an interview [video] with the CBS show 60 Minutes, the founder-and-chief of the controversial secrets site Wikileaks discusses the recent backlash against his site, following the release of U.S. Military and State Department secrets.  He states, "The U.S. does not have the technology to take the site down . ... Just the way our technology is constructed, the way the Internet is constructed."

He adds, "We've had attacks on particular domain names. Little pieces of infrastructure knocked out. But we now have some 2,000 fully independent in every way websites, where we're publishing around the world. It is -- I mean, it's not possible to do."

Assange is referring to the fact that his site lost its central domain name, most of its official hosting, and its donations accounts.  Volunteers, who host mirrors of the webpage, now sustain the site.  Attempting to access Wikileaks or searching for it in Google results in visitors being redirected to one of these mirrored sites.

While the issue of what Wikileaks has done is hot in the minds of many, much of the 60 Minutes interview focuses on the site's threats that it will release damning information implicating a major U.S. bank in wrongdoing.

In an October 2009 interview with the International Data Group's publication ComputerWorld, Mr. Assange claimed to possess a hard drive with a wealth of information from the Bank of America.  

In an interview with top business periodical Forbes, which took place in late November, Wikileaks' Assange claimed to be preparing a "megaleak", which would likely lead to a major U.S. financial institution (presumably Bank of America) being investigated and potentially charged by international authorities.

During the 60 Minutes special, interest was high on the topic, but the interviewer's attempt to extract more info from Mr. Assange was largely rebuffed.  He states, "I won't make any comment in relation to that upcoming publication."

But he did express that he gains pleasure from the ill effects on the financial world his news is causing.  He states, "I think it's great. We have all these banks squirming, thinking maybe it's them."

The interview did not touch on a significant point in that regard -- the question of whether any Wikileaks members -- including Mr. Assange -- had profited off the stock shifts triggered by the organization's new releases.

Some have suggested that Mr. Assange and Wikileaks may be using its new releases to profit on the stock market.  Using certain mechanisms the site could selectively release news, dropping a commercial entity's stock price, making money off the drop.  Indeed, the Bank of America's share price dropped 3 percent in late 2010 on speculation that it was in Wikileaks crosshairs.  The actual release could drop stock further.  It would be relatively easy for someone affiliated with the site or its members to exploit the financial repercussions of the site's actions.

Wikileaks is a relatively loosely organized and regulated operation, with less than a dozen full time staff members, by almost all accounts.  The site publishes no details of its operating procedures or finances.

Unfortunately, that question, like many others (Mr. Assange's self-labeling as an "anarchist" in the 1990s) went unasked in the 60 Minutes interview.

Update: Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2011:

Some seemed to imply that we were making up allegations that Wikileaks was manipulating the stock market to profit itself or its financiers.  This is absolutely not the case.  Those capable of a quick Google search should be able to find a number of stories on this topic, such as:
"Wikileaks is harmful now, but could become even more destructive" -- Kansas City Star

Which writes:

Shares in Bank of America dropped 3 percent Tuesday. Although they recovered Wednesday, banking analyst Dick Bove said on CNBC that this may represent a new means of stock-market manipulation, by which the unknown funders of Wikileaks could profit by cratering shares in targeted companies.

Also some challenged whether Assange was ever really an anarchist.  Well he said he was, at least at one time, back in the 90s.  In the book Underground: Tales of Hacking, Madness and Obsession on the Electronic Frontier by Suelette Dreyfus, which Mr. Assange edited, researched, and contributed text to, an autobiographical passage by Assange describes:

As he quietly backed out of the system, wiping away his footprints as he tip-toed away, Mendax [Assange] thought about what he had seen. He was deeply disturbed that any hacker would work for the US military.

Hackers, he thought, should be anarchists, not hawks. 

He may well have changed his views since his teenage years in Australia in the 1980s, but it is well documented that at least at one time he expressed anarchistic views.

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By michael67 on 2/1/2011 11:43:40 PM , Rating: -1
Dude, you can't argue the side of butchers and murderers. So give it up.

And you don't, argue that side ?
Have you ever seen “Occupation 101” the Jews are the new fascist in the middle east, and the US is fully supporting them, till you seen that movie any argument from your side is sorta non valid.
If a 9 year old Palestinian child try's to kill it self because it simply dose not wane live anymore, Israel is is doing something wrong, and America in supporting them is guilty by association.
Killing 3000 innocent civilians in one terrorist attack is not justifiable, ever.

I never condoned that
First let me say I did not agree the actions taken on 9/11 by the terrorist

I did say I could have agreed on justifiable targets.
but I do understand them and to a degree even would have condone the attack on pentagon, CIA and even the white house, just because of the history of damage US foreign policy has done to the middle east.

100.000 Documented civilian deaths from violence and counting.
Yeah they are only collateral damage, that will make all the difference for the families of those ho ware killed, IMHO Iraq was better of whit Sadam, at least there was order then.

And the USA is also just as responsible for all the killing done during the Shah's regime, as they railroaded a democratic election and put a man in to power that killed and tortured his people, that's why those students occupied the US embassy in 1980, because they feared the US would help the Shah back in power again.
I scoff at you saying the BBC is neutral. BBC is as biased as the rest of them. The BBC owns broadcast media in the UK, they are just as biased as the rest of them.

Seriously ?, do you even know how the BBC is funded ?
BBC get money from the state, that means the left and right wing party's have to agree how they spend that money, the only way they can do that is by being as neutral as possible, I will not say that everything the BBC produces is unbiased, seen things that I considered left but also right orientated, it of course still is made by people, but in general, and specially the news, they bring that as unbiased as possible.
If Saudi troops were stationed in the Vatican we would probably pray and hope the occupiers leave before shedding more blood. The Pope would ask that noone do anything of violence. that is the difference man, an extremist christian will give up their life to let an infidel live...

Now you are just being silly ^_^

Yeah I am sure the pope and most Christians would prefer no bloodshed, but those “extremist christians” ware still pretty easy willing to go to war, over a lie!
And its not the first time, and every major conflict Vietnam, Gulf I & II ware started by manipulation and lies

It is a complicated answer. The real beginnings started a lot early in the '20's when a young Vietnamese nationalist, who would eventually be known as Ho Chi Minh, was in the U.S. studying. He wrote letters to the U.S. presidents asking for their help in ridding his country of French colonialism. They were ignored. During WWII, this same person was contacted by the U.S. military, and told that in return for Vietnamese help in fighting the Japanese, after the war was over, the U.S. would help Vietnam achieve independence from the French. This promise was broken, and various factions of Vietnamese under the eventual command of Minh, united to fight the occupying military of France. Much of the cost of the French presence in Vietnam was borne by the U.S. from the very beginning under the guise of fighting communistic expansion. After the peace accords were signed in 1954-55, one of the stipulations was that Vietnam was to be divided into two countries with elections to be held withing two years in each section regarding total unification into one country. It was the South Vietnam portion, under the control of their U.S. backed gov't that refused to hold these elections. Thus basically the war was born again. It was not so much a war of communistic aggresion, as it was a civil war to reunite the country as a whole. The main reasons it was perceived as a communist threat, were some of the ideology's of the north, and the fact that they North turned to communist countries for the supplies and support they would need in their fight, since the U.S. would not provide them with any aid, and the U.S. clearly sided with the consistently corrupt regimes of the southern divide.

Then the Tonkin Gulf Incident/Lie Launched Vietnam War.

Gulf War I
Bush senior tricked Saddam to invade Kuwait.
Before invading Kuwait – the incident that led to the first Gulf War, which led us to put troops on Saudi soil, which led Osama to declare war against us, which led to 9/11, and which also all led to the current Iraq War – before Saddam ever invaded Kuwait, back when he was our ally, he asked us if we would mind if he invaded Kuwait.

Gulf War II
Bush junior wants to show pappy he can invade Iraq to over a even bigger lie.
Tricky Dick, and slippery Donald Rumsfeld are rubbing there hands as all there friends and old companies will get rich of the war.

Just because Americans are not willing to look at the history leading up to events, dose not mean that others are not willing to do so.

People how fail to learn from history are domed to repeat it.
People how fail to learn from history correctly are just simply doomed.

The truth is in the eye of the beholder, and as long people are not willing to look true the eyes of the other side we will keep on having these wars.

And I wonder how the butchers are in the eyes of the Muslims?

"There's no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer

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