Who wears black under black and then a red tie? Is that a golden vest peeking out of his jacket? He has long white hair! Look at his soul-less eyes! This man is not a man. No, this man is a character, and I totally love it.
Wikileaks has made itself famous by obtaining massive amounts of sensitive documents and releasing them to the world. Governments are panicking, media is feasting, civilians are outraged. The sorts of things that go on behind closed doors, eh? As of now, most of the documents obtained by Wikileaks are related to the US, UK and other similar countries, and many people are critical of that. Credited to Assange is the response,
"People say, why don’t you release more leaks [from] the Taliban. So I say hey, help us, tell more Taliban dissidents about us."Wikileaks isn't biased in their "coverage" on purpose - it's just that Western folks are more aware of the organization and there are apparently more sources prepared to divulge information.
I once saw someone criticize Assange for accepting the publicity he receives. The more publicity Wikileaks gets the better! The more eyes that are on Assange and Wikileaks the less likely it is that someone would arrange an "accident" for him. And I certainly hope that the same someone is smart enough not to touch the Wikileaks site itself. To attack it would be to create a Hydra, nurtured by the rage and anti-establishment tendencies of thousands of geeks worldwide (This attitude can be evidenced by the recent Limewire hilarity). Even still, even knowing that a threat on his life would be the stupidest mistake anyone could make, Assange still mostly lives in the shadows, traveling constantly, occasionally surfacing to attend a conference. He won't enter the United States, for example, on the advice of his lawyer.
The thing I find most intriguing about this whole thing is that the founder of the world's most infamous (and arguably effective) whistleblower website is Australian. The man who fights censorship and secrecy as a job hails from a country so gung-ho about censorship that they have come dangerously close to censoring the Internet and routinely censor media (video games, movies) before offering them to its citizens. On the other hand, maybe it's not ironic at all; maybe it makes perfect sense.
I am less interested in the information divulged than in the phenomena of a civilian-led rebellion. And that's what this is - a rebellion. A rebellion against secrecy in our governments. A rebellion demanding accountability. A rebellion that will change the face of media, journalism and, hopefully, government. At the very least it will make organizations take a closer look at their security to keep it falling into the wrong hands.