Bitcoin donations are pouring in for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who was arrested April 11 in London pursuant to an extradition agreement with the United States.
Donations started to spike after the official Wikileaks account posted a tweet yesterday, soliciting contributions to Assange’s legal defense fund. That tweet has since been deleted.
In the past 24 hours, the Wikileaks bitcoin wallet address has logged 314 transactions. Contributions now top 6.7 BTC, or roughly $34,000.
Objectively, that’s not a huge amount of money, but other contributions are being made via fiat currency.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the anti-government Assange is a longtime bitcoin fan.
In 2017, Assange tweeted that “bitcoin is the real Occupy Wall Street,” referencing the progressive anti-consumerist movement that launched in 2011.
Wikileaks fans around the world have been rallying to get Assange released from jail after his shocking arrest at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.
As CCN.com reported, the Australian journalist/activist had been living at the embassy as a political refugee since 2012.
Police were able to arrest Assange after Ecuador abruptly withdrew its asylum protection. It’s unclear if he will be extradited to the United States to stand trial.
A disturbing video by RT shows a bearded and haggard-looking Assange being dragged out of the embassy and shoved into a police van.
The U.S. Department of Justice has charged Assange with conspiracy to hack into a classified government computer with former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning.
The DOJ indictment alleges that in 2010, Assange conspired with Manning to crack a password stored on a Department of Defense computer connected to the Secret Internet Protocol Network (SIPRNet), a U.S. government network used for classified documents.
“Manning, who had access to the computers in connection with her duties as an intelligence analyst, was using the computers to download classified records to transmit to WikiLeaks.”
“Cracking the password would have allowed Manning to log on to the computers under a user name that did not belong to her. Such a deceptive measure would have made it more difficult for investigators to determine the source of the illegal disclosures.”
Assange’s arrest has caused outrage on social media, with many noting that he’s being prosecuted for doing what reporters win Pulitzer Prizes for — which is to expose government abuses.
Democrat Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard — who’s running for president — said the arrest was basically a threat to journalists who publish embarrassing information that exposes the corruption of influential politicians and the federal government.
“The arrest of Julian Assange is meant to send a message to all Americans and journalists: Be quiet, behave, toe the line. Or you will pay the price.”
Liberal journalist Michael Tracey tweeted his contempt for the left-wing “media hacks and Twitter charlatans” who are celebrating Assange’s arrest after spending the past two years whining about President Donald Trump’s smack-downs of the press.
The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald said the establishment media are gloating over Assange’s arrest because they’re jealous of all the major stories he broke in exile — using nothing but a laptop.
Fox News host Tucker Carlson pointed out that the main reason why the Wikileaks founder was targeted was that he humiliated the Democratic Party by leaking internal emails showing that they colluded with the media to prop up Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Not surprisingly, Hillary was thrilled by Assange’s arrest and gloated about it hours after it occurred. “The bottom line is, he has to answer for what he has done,” she gleefully chirped.
If convicted, Julian Assange faces up to five years in jail.