Julian Assange wins Sam Adams Award for Integrity 564

The award is judged by a group of retired senior US military and intelligence personnel, and past winners. This year the award to Julian Assange was unanimous.

Previous winners and ceremony locations:

Coleen Rowley of the FBI; in Washington, D.C.

Katharine Gun of British intelligence; in Copenhagen, Denmark

Sibel Edmonds of the FBI; in Washington, D.C.

Craig Murray, former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan; in New York City

Sam Provance, former sergeant, U.S. Army, truth-teller about Abu Ghraib; in Washington, D.C.

Frank Grevil, major, Danish army intelligence, imprisoned for giving the Danish press documents showing that Denmark’s prime minister disregarded warnings that there was no authentic evidence of WMDs in Iraq; in Copenhagen, Denmark

Larry Wilkerson, colonel, U.S. Army (retired), former chief of staff to Secretary Colin Powell at the State Department, who has exposed what he called the “Cheney-Rumsfeld cabal”; in Washington, D.C.


Not sure yet where this year’s award ceremony will be held, but I’ll be there.

564 thoughts on “Julian Assange wins Sam Adams Award for Integrity

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  • glenn

    Quote of the day:

    “Nationalism is an infantile disease. It is the measles of mankind.” Albert EInstein.

  • Vronsky

    Isn’t nationalism just the other guy’s patriotism? The word is too often used as if interchangeable with ‘imperial expansionism’. Hitler was a nationalist. So was Gandhi, though – see the problem?

    My quote of the day:

    ‘A Buddhist monk walked up to a hot dog vendor and said “Make me one with everything.”‘

    – anon

  • Vronsky

    “In my opinion, the rulers of our world are mostly stark raving bonkers.”

    Or simply avaricious and mendacious (to quote Meryl Nass), but wholly rational – they know they can get away with it. See my post at October 7, 2010 8:20 AM.

  • technicolour

    Felicity Arbuthnot: thank you.

    Vronsky, I think you have to be psychopathic to *want* to get away with it.

  • ingo

    A ‘big society’ that is not offering its subjects a fair referendum on a fair voting system, whilst banding about the fairness that is all in a sudden supposed to be within us, is not at all big, but desperate to pull the wool over our eyes once more.

    I just about had enough of all this fair pounding society gets, large families, old people, the disabled, our services, whilst the tax system, in dire need of reform, is hardly mentioned.

    A fair societ must be absed on fair representation and a fair vote.

    They must be going soft, Orwell never used the word fair in his book.

  • Ruth

    A fair society is one where the people vote for representatives who are actually able to wield power. We have a pretend democracy where our leaders are just the executives for a secret government, which selects its potential executives for presentation skills.

  • Vronsky

    “I think you have to be psychopathic to *want* to get away with it.”

    I s’pose. But it’s not the pathology that scares me, it’s the rationality – I don’t have the feeling that they’re plunging headlong out of control, and their madness will be their undoing. I think that they know (or are well advised) just how far they can go without provoking uncontrollable reaction.

    Recall that the construction of the welfate state here was not altruism or idealism, but a reaction to fear of socialism – the ‘spectre stalking Europe’. Bismarck explicitly understood that, and his ‘social insurance’ was copied by Churchill and the Tories: Labour, credited as authors of the welfare state, were in fact last to support the Beveridge Report’s proposals.

    Today the elite have at their disposal technologies of social control, news manipulation, surveillance and suppression that Churchill and Bismarck could only dream of – they have much less need of compromise.

  • Anonymous

    I have to agree with Vronsky here, the getting away is calculated. As yet the existing power systems can not contemplate radical change, regardless of how much it is needed.

    Unless there is a sustainable indicator on everything we do, whether its finance, work or play, and this has clearly not been the case, their efforts will merely be a perpetuation of the same, living it up on the backs of future generations.

    Give children the vote I say. If they can care for their elderly parents, dodge unsafe neighbourhoods on their way to school/shopping, and are apt enough to cope being bombarded with danger signals from an adult/predator world on a daily basis, than they can also make a choice on aspiring politicians at elections. The age is debatable, I would try 14 years with a view of lowering it further.

    Such move would bring a new set of policies into the horizon of politicians, something to be considered at all times. It is long overdue imho.

    Not that it will ever happen, but it does not stop us talking ’bout it. Whats your idea of a including thinking kids into this big society? or was it bog society?

  • Vronsky

    “Whats your idea of a including thinking kids into this big society?”

    Irrelevant. Whoever said ‘it doesn’t matter who you vote for, the government always gets in’ was uttering a very profound truth. I’ve been involved in active politics for many years and it’s quite clear that our ‘representatives’ are self-selected. The party system is an immediate and severe filter – you almost certainly won’t be elected unless you’re a member of a party. It’s also worth noting that where there are ‘independent’ members, they first achieved prominence and election as members of a party – invariably the case in Scotland. If you’re not a ‘joiner’, then you’ll never be member of parliament. England occasionally elects an independent or single cause candidate – usually at a by-election, and to be discarded later.

    There are other filters – the vetting processes and hustings. Ostensibly these are to identify the best candidates. Perhaps it’s accidental, but they always choose the most conformist. To cut a long story short, when you step into the polling booth all the important choices have already been made. No matter where you place your cross, it will be against the name of someone who is guaranteed not to be a problem.

    Perhaps in Scotland we have a sliver of light: the SNP. But it cannot succeed in the face of a uniformly hostile media, with the result that principles begin to soften. Just now they are making common cause with the establishment parties to retain the manufacture of aircraft carriers – unmistakeably machines of power projection, not defence. To do otherwise, you see, would let the egregious Glasgow Herald and Scotsman ‘newspapers’ jump all over them for failing to defend jobs.

    Whether the British ruling class is wicked or merely stupid is not the important question that Orwell claimed (and we seem to be debating now). Unfortunately for us they are wicked but not stupid. Back to my hobby horse: elections can’t work because an alias is not an option – there is merely an illusion of choice, like the GoCompare websites for insurance. We need sortition, parliaments chosen by lottery and immune to the inveiglings I’ve described. Aleatoric democracy. Aleatocracy.

    If for Westminster we simply appointed 600 or so people selected at random, we would have the following statistically necessary consequences:

    * On average, they would be of average intelligence. This is much better than what we have.

    * On average, they would be of average morality. This is much better than what we have.

    * Few or none would be on retainers from defence contractors. This is much better than what we have.

    * Few or none would have attended private schools. This is much better than what we have.

    * Half would be female. This is much better than what we have.

    * Ethnicities would be represented at proportions close to their proportions in the population. This is much better than what we have.

    * Professions and lifestyles would be represented at proportions close to their proportions in the population. This is much better than what we have.

    * They would all be drawn from the society that they regulate, and they would all soon return to it. This is very considerably better than what we have.

    I could go on, you can add to the list yourself. What also matters is the institutions of government from the Civil Service on down. They’re all fucked too.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    Non-UN-sanctioned US drone attacks have killed at least 8 people in northwest Pakistan amid reports of a surge of such US attacks on the country.

    Though Washington claims the strikes target militants, most of the victims of the attacks have been civilians.

    Almost a thousand Pakistanis have lost their lives in more than 100 US drone attacks during the past two years.


    Drones are quite slow in flight and my son has suggested designing an ‘attacker drone’ which might be of highly manoeuvrable helicopter design, radio controlled and use an electro-magnetic field produced from two sensors arrays, one transmitted the field and one receiving. If the field is bent by the bandit drone then this is detected by a receiver and some action is invoked from the ‘attacking’ drone to render the ‘bandit’ drone useless. Such a design would be cheap to construct using readily available parts so a ‘swarm’ of attackers would also confuse the ‘bandits’ remote control.

  • Larry from St. Louis

    Vronsky – Sibel Edmonds: the darling of the right-wing whack jobs in the States and the left-wing nutcases in the UK.

    At what point will you be subscribing to the American Conservative magazine?

  • Ingho

    Oh thanks god we are still important,’not so gay Larry has responded to mentioning kids and elections, what a surprise.

    Tell us Larry, what makes you come back here? what morsel of information pulls your twig or rocks your flipper?

  • Clark


    lots of people will reject sortition because it’s not ‘democratic’, ie they don’t get to vote. But here’s a thought. People hate politicians. So put’em in at random, by sortition, but have a cumulative ‘Kick’em out’ vote; you can vote to have your MP replaced by lottery and it gets added to a running total. The MP gets replaced by sortition when the vote total reaches ten or twenty percent of their electorate. Adjust the percentage to get a healthy turnover. I reckon that negative voting would really appeal to people.

  • Vronsky

    “have a cumulative ‘Kick’em out'”

    Yes. I think the power of recall would be something that people would enjoy exercising.

    I’m trying to get the idea of sortition taken seriously because that means taking ‘the problem’ seriously. I admit it would be no easier to realise than any other dream. It sounds very off-the-wall, but given that what we currently have by way of politics is unbridled criminality, isn’t it rather a moderate proposition? How else can we prevent the subversion of government by small interest groups? My answer might be wrong, but I think I’ve understood the question.

  • Vronsky

    Thank god you’re back, Larry. Only morons here, and swivel-eyed conspiraloons. And nutcases – as you say – and of course probably whack jobs, whatever they are. Wonderful to have someone of your acuity here, raising the tone. I’m working on Cherubito’s ‘Homenaje a Victor Jara’ at the moment. I’ve got to bar 26, and I have a bad feeling that there’s an E-flat there that should be E-natural. What do you think? It’s a buggered up copy I got in Barcelona (don’t worry if that doesn’t ring a bell, it isn’t in the States and it isn’t anywhere you’ve been bombing recently) a couple of summers ago – part eaten by a dog, I think, with a taste for scores in drop-G tuning. Still, would value your input, as ever.


    Check the links down the right, perhaps especially Violeta Parra. Gracias a la vida, I’m sure you’ll agree.


  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    Felicity Arbuthnot – A Tribute and thoughts for the silent victims of Iraq:

    Felicity Arbuthnot is a journalist specialising in social and environmental issues with special knowledge of Iraq, a country which she has visited thirty times since the 1991 Gulf war. Iraq, she describes as: ‘sliding from the impossible, to the apocalyptic.’

    With former UN Assistant Secretary General and UN Co-ordinator in Iraq, Denis Halliday, she was senior Iraq researcher for John Pilger©

  • ingo

    Not 100% sure, but very possibly met Felicity at a Green Party Conference during the 1980/90/s, she gave a speech, I believe it was on some nuclear issue.

    Thanks for the link somebody, a stark reminder to what Blair’s journey is really about, what should make him shudder before he goes to bed, cause him waking sweats at 5 am and make his heart work with reluctance.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    John and Lorna Norgrove are “devastated” by their daughter’s death and were joined at the weekend by their other daughter Sofie at their remote home on the Isle of Lewis.

    I feel a great sense of sorrow for this family. Agent ‘yes man’ Cameron gave the go ahead for an American special forces rescue on the premise that the Americans ‘knew the terrain better than the British’ – rubbish! Her release could have been negotiated.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq


    Thank-you for reminding us of the 7/7 bombing inquest.

    We will not learn the full truth from this inquest and burning questions will not be answered. Lady Justice Hallett pledged to “balance carefully the needs of national security with relevance and fairness”. That means the inquest will be bogged down with aftermath events such as the time taken for rescue services to act. We note there will be no assistance from the Security Services.

    Dame Heather Hallett, 58, is being tipped as a future Chief Justice…

    Of course this will be dependent on a nice clean white-wash of the events leading up to 7/7 and the MI6 CONNECTION TO THE SO CALLED ‘MASTERMIND!’

  • dreoilin

    “US grenade may have killed British aid worker Linda Norgrove”

    It had initially been reported that the 36-year-old died after her kidnappers detonated a bomb vest as American troops tried to free her.

    Now it appears she may have been killed by a grenade thrown by US special forces. Six kidnappers also died in the mission.

    The Foreign Secretary is to make a statement on her death at 3.30pm today in the Commons

  • dreoilin

    “It had initially been reported”

    Put out the ‘bomb vest’ story and then wait to see if you’re found out. Bastards.

  • Anonymous

    The BBC can’t bear to say she was killed by the US goons. Their headline is ‘Hostage may have been killed by rescuers’ with a cosy piece about Cameroon phoning her family. That’s all they needed.

    The Beeb also have the Banksy Simpsons intro with some explanations about the sequences. Quite a bitter commentary on our dependence on the third world for cheap goods.


    In the town where I live, Primark have just opened a big store which was C&A originally and then BHS. Also TK Maxx have just opened in what was Woolworths. I will not be entering either establishment to buy clothes made in sweatshops.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    That’s so terribly sad. It seems to me that they might have tried to negotiate her release – we don’t know the facts yet, obviously. It’s emblematic of this whole dreaful morass.

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