Interview with Brigitta Jonsdottir in the Globe and Mail

Posted on January 12, 2011

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This is a pretty good interview with Brigitta Jonsdottir in Candada’s Globe and Mail. So much of coverage of Wikileaks has been frustratingly celebrity-centric, focusing on Assange and whether or not he’s sweaty today. It’s unfortunate that the media only become interested in deeper issues when there’s something scandal worthy–as Jonsdottir made the news last week when the DOJ subpoenaed her Twitter account.  Much of the tale of Wikileaks, its other members and its path from idea to practical whistle-blowing website has yet to be told, but this is a good start.

Along the lines of the media’s fixation on the lurid, here’s the cover of the Vanity Fair story I wrote about last week:

 

While nothing is more important than Justin Bieber, they did manage to squeeze in a complete mischaracterization of the story. “Twisted?”  You’d have to have lived a pretty sheltered life to consider anything about the Wikileaks story “twisted”. I’d say the term more accurately characterizes a magazine that slathers its cover with vacuous homage to fleeting celebrity and crass ephemera every month, while relegating its important stories to the margin. Others would simply call that America.

Update on Jonsdottir:

The Iceland Review Online reports that the Icelandic parliament has told the US in no uncertain terms that it has no legal authority to prosecute or detain Jonsdottir.

US Ambassador to Iceland Luis E. Arreaga was informed about the parliamentary immunity of MP Birgitta Jónsdóttir at a meeting in the Icelandic Foreign Ministry with the ministry’s undersecretary Einar Gunnarsson and international law expert Tómas H. Heidar yesterday morning.

A press release from the ministry says that in addition to calling for information, Gunnarsson and Heidar expressed their concern that an Icelandic MP is the subject of a criminal investigation of this nature…

They explained that Jónsdóttir has parliamentary immunity in Iceland and that she cannot be separated from the Icelandic Althingi parliament in this manner.

They stressed that there should be no further disruption to her work as an MP, including her rights to travel and participate in international political discourse.

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