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German face of Wikileaks steps down in anger

The Local · 25 Sep 2010, 13:12

Published: 25 Sep 2010 13:12 GMT+02:00

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Schmitt, who recently described to The Local in an exclusive interview how the site was changing the journalism and investigations game, told Der Spiegel over the weekend that he'd had enough and was leaving.

“We all had crazy stress over the last months. Mistakes happened, which is ok as long as one learns from them. But to do that one has to admit them. Above all, it seems the trust that we are all pulling in the same direction has been lost,” he said.

The website created headlines over the summer when it published 92,000 classified US documents concerning the Afghanistan war, which provided insight into what is actually happening there.

Schmitt says he is unhappy that such large international projects have taken priority over smaller national documents – and blames Assange for this change in emphasis.

“I have tried several times to talk about it but Julian Assange reacted to all criticism with the allegation that I am not obeying him and have become disloyal to the project,” said Schmitt.

He said he would not be the only one to leave the group. “There is a lot of discontent and some will leave like me,” he said.

Schmitt also revealed his real identity in the magazine, saying his name was actually Daniel Domscheit-Berg and that he had previously worked in the IT security sector. He said he was recruited to Wikileaks via personal contacts and gave up his regular work to devote himself full time to the project.

Story continues below…

Assange has been increasingly under attack since the publication of the US documents, with allegations of sexual attacks made against him in Sweden, which he said were part of a campaign against him.

The Local/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

14:15 September 25, 2010 by Kayak

(or should I use your real name, Julian?!!!).

You need to develop your feminine-side and learn open-up a bit.
14:38 September 25, 2010 by Prufrock2010
I'm with Isabella on this one. All the way. Although Assange does come across as somewhat of a megalomaniac, despite the valuable service that WikiLeaks performs, so it would not be surprising that there is friction between the two men over policy.
14:43 September 25, 2010 by Kayak
Now Julian don't be upset - you're very good at protecting yourself!

Jokes aren't funny when they have to be explained so I wont try. It is however, interesting to me the way you reacted - it's also funny.

"Isabella" Sure Julain. - Haaaa haaaa.
15:27 September 25, 2010 by blufx1963
He does not look like a happy camper in the photo. Ha, ha.
18:18 September 25, 2010 by derExDeutsche
Wikileaks is just a typical Liberal short sighted Line Judge that has no interst in what happens on the other side of the court. Just another way to tie the hands of any sort of resolution to anything. It follows the Progressive 'Gray' mantra. Very similar to the one that keeps in Hamas' Propaganda machine well oiled in the Progressive circles. Don't fool yourself, Anger is right, and they don't don't want resolution.
19:09 September 25, 2010 by pepsionice
Whatever serious nature that WikiLeaks was....is gone. Julian needs to step down and let the program go onto the next stage without him. He's an anchor, and he's not propelling the organization in any direction. The behavior that we've all seen in the past two months....is that of a teenage brat who partied too much, and then got himself into deep trouble. He won't admit to nothing...so be it. He'll drag himself down within six months as most people start taking this as a comedy and nothing else.
22:36 September 25, 2010 by Gretl
Kayak - I got it. I agree, if you have to explain the joke, it's not worth it.
00:31 September 26, 2010 by Prufrock2010
I hope that WikiLeaks will somehow survive this internal squabble. As the so-called mainstream news organizations have largely abdicated their roles as journalists in favor of cheerleading, we now need a whistleblower website more than ever to ascertain for ourselves what is going on around us. WikiLeaks is a valuable resource, notwithstanding the hubris of Julian Assange.
01:42 September 26, 2010 by freechoice
Global conspirator are much more powerful than individuals!
04:40 September 26, 2010 by bernie1927
@Prufrock2010. I agree. We do need a whistle blower website, because our press is only interested in sensationalism and does not give a hoot about facts. It will be rough going for them for a while and, if a guy can't hack it, then the company is much better off without him. Let's hear the unvarnished truth for a change.
12:32 September 26, 2010 by ngwanem
From wikileaks tweet yesterday:

"Spiegel report Schmitt resigned which is misleading. Schmitt was suspended a month ago."

Who is telling the truth now?
16:38 September 26, 2010 by derExDeutsche
The problem I have with Wikileaks is the same problem I have with most Lib views. It is that they are only interested in 'Whistleblowing' the side who is trying NOT to kill civilans. Meanwhile the other side Deliberately targets civilans, but I guess that isn't news so much, is it, Libs? 'Whistleblowing' is only a nobel cause when it is done everywhere, not just on one side of the political spectrum.

for example, its like Wikileaks breaks a HUGE story, i.e., that Sandra Bullock just kissed some dude in a movie, meanwhile Jesse James is humping everything that moves in real life, but gets no mention. It would seem to me, they have no problem with Jesses' behavior, in fact they condone it.

Wikileaks is an invaluable resource for those looking for reasons to continue recruitment, propaganda, and fighting. Its just trying to instigate a never ending Gray Area of war. Its only aspiration is to create an Israel-Palestine-like conflict worldwide.

and Prufrock, you've got your head so far up your ass, you couldn't see jack squat if your life depended on it. You just hate America and all that it stands for, which puts you in the same boat as Wikileaks. your vapid opinions are never a surprise.
17:02 September 26, 2010 by Talonx
@ derExDeutsche

They also leaked the 'climate gate' emails. Your argument is broken :(

Wouldn't be the first time you were this wrong.

@ ngwanem

Spot on, seems like Schmitt is just looking for fame and caught up in pride. That or he really has been bought off. Plus, counter what Schmitt says, Wikileaks has published local things recently, the Loveparade report for instance. Given the COINTELPRO crap that the CIA has advocated in the past and hinted at, specifically regarding wikileaks, a buy off wouldn't be surprising.
16:23 December 25, 2010 by DingDong
Divide and Rule..... the spooks are really working overtime.

Just remember do we want people like Rumsfeld....( " we don't do bodycounts"..... remember ? Don't ever let yourselves forget.... How dare you )..... to not be exposed and to be lauded and appreciated by those that wish to exercise power...or do we want to try for something else.

It doesn't matter if it's the US hegemony now being targeted.... soon it will be the Chinese and so on ad infinitum, or as long as there be sizeable human power structures on Earth.

So , start the ball rolling and may it never stop.

Wake up..... Wake up..... Wake up.
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