“There has been a lot of misquoting of me,” Julian Assange told reporters over a video link from his refuge at the Ecuadoran embassy in London, after speculation arose that the upcoming Wikileaks release would seriously damage Hillary Clinton. Claims that he and Wikileaks have targeted Hillary and want to stop her from becoming president are “false,” Assange insisted, although he did state that the leaks would impact the US election in other ways. Assange hinted that Google might need to start sweating a bit, however:
“The material that WikiLeaks is going to publish before the end of the year is of … a very significant moment in different directions, affecting three powerful organizations in three different states as well as … the U.S election process,” he said via a video link at an event marking the group’s 10th anniversary.
He said the material would focus on war, weapons, oil, mass surveillance, the technology giant Google and the U.S. election, but declined to give any details.
Perhaps the media made too much of it, but it’s not quite accurate to complain about misquotes. Less than two months ago, Assange told Fox News that Wikileaks would next release “significant” material about Clinton, and that it could be a game-changer:
With 75 days before voters pick their new president, email revelations are threatening to overtake Hillary Clinton’s campaign – with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange hurling another log on an already raging fire with a vow to release “significant” Clinton documents.
In an exclusive interview Wednesday night with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly, Assange was asked whether new information culled from Clinton emails would be released before the general election: “Yes, absolutely.”
Asked whether it could be an election game-changer, Assange told Kelly, “It depends on how it catches fire.”
Assange promised revelations about the campaign that were at least equal to that of the DNC hack. That threat had Democrats doing their best to suggest that Wikileaks had become an outlet for forgers working for Russian intelligence, and that the release wouldn’t contain any legitimate documents. Roger Stone relied on Assange’s promotion for his laughably hyperbolic prediction that Hillary would be forced to end her campaign tomorrow because of it. Assange now wants to lower expectations and also shift blame for them being too high, but he’s just as responsible for the bar’s current position, Stone notwithstanding. He’s still promising a “significant moment,” but the game-changing claim seems to have gone by the wayside, at least in terms of Hillary Clinton.
So what happened between then and now to force Assange into the walkback? It might be that their research has concluded that the documents aren’t as impactful as they were led to believe. It could also be a realization that they just might not make much difference now, when almost everyone is locked into the binary-option paradigm. Anything short of murder can and will be spun, and so now a corporate target like Google looks a lot more inviting. W