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“You often hear … that something may be a threat to U.S. national security,” he went on. “This must be shot down whenever this statement is made. A threat to U.S. national security? Is anyone serious? The security of the entire nation of the United States? It is ridiculous!”
He said he wasn’t interested in the safety of states, only the safety of individual human beings.
“If we are talking a threat to individual soldiers … or citizens of the United States, then that is potentially a genuine concern,” he said.
Assange cast a bit of light on the way his organization operates, describing an online submission system “like nothing else you’ve ever seen.”
“We encrypt all the information, it is routed through protected legal jurisdictions, multiple servers,” he said.
But, to the amusement of the audience, the former computer hacker said one of the best ways to submit classified material remained the international postal system.
His comments also offered insight into his own motivation, referring to a statement he gave to German newspaper Der Spiegel in which he said he “loved crushing bastards.”
He said the comment wasn’t meant in jest, describing himself as a combative person who likes “stopping people who have created victims from creating any more.”
Assange also expressed disdain for the military, alluding to a statement attributed to Albert Einstein, a noted pacifist, which describes soldiers as contemptible drones and attacks patriotism as a cover for brutality and war.
He scoffed when the Frontline’s moderator spoke of teenage British soldiers “giving their lives” in Afghanistan.
“To what?” he asked.
Associated Press writers Kimberly Dozier in Washington and Sarah El Deeb in Cairo contributed to this story.
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