Did Wikileaks cut a deal with Israel?

Reports are coming in that the online whistleblowing outfit Wikileaks‘ boss Julian Assange did a deal with the Israeli government to protect its interests in return for donations and perhaps a large number of diplomatic cables.

Suspicions were first aroused when there was nothing about Israel in the diplomatic cables and indeed there were other holes in the chronology when Israel was bombing schools with white phosphorus. It would have been considered odd for the US government diplomatic core not to post something during this period but the Wikileaks record is empty.

While the US is deeply embarrassed as its views on world leaders and its allies were made public, Wikileaks is silent about Israel.

However, all the material points to Iran being a major world problem and building nuclear weapons to wage a terrible war on its neighbours.

Aluf Benn wrote in Haaretz that thanks to Wikileaks there is now no fear “Washington will exert heavy pressure on Israel to freeze settlement construction or to accelerate negotiations on a withdrawal from the territories.” Instead, also courtesy of WikiLeaks, the world’s attention had been shifted to exactly where a “vindicated” Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu wants it trembling in fear of Iran’s nuclear weapons programme.

If you look at the released cables you see Israel’s main arguments about Iran being attributed to US sources. Arab leaders see the Iranian crisis as much more important than the peace process, and want the US to overthrow the Iranians.

Turkey, which has been attacking Israel, received a slap with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was characterised as an unreliable, corrupt fundamentalist.

Enter Julian Assange. Although he is portrayed as an anti-establishment anarchist hacker, he happens to like Netanyahu and his policies. It is alleged that he said as much to Time magazine claiming that Netanyahu was a a model of a global leader, who believes that the publication of documents helps international diplomacy.

All this is circumstantial. But it seems there is more to Assange and Israel. It is known that a group of volunteers fled Wikileaks over Assange’s leadership decisions. German Daniel Domkhitt Berg is apparently leading the rebels.

He told a Syrian newspaper  they quit because Assange met with Israeli diplomats or Mossad in Switzerland . The conversation was recorded and an agreement signed where Wikileaks would look after Israeli interests in return for cash and more leaks, according to Berg.

We have a Syrian newspaper and a sworn enemy of Assange talking to each other and agreeing that is what happened, so there is an element of “well they would say that, wouldn’t they?”.

There are other weak points to the idea. Wikileaks has been friendly with the pro-Hezbollah Lebanese al-Akhbar newspaper, which if Assange was pro-Israeli would not happen.

Only a small amount of cables have been released. It is possible that Assange is planning an “Israeli package”. However,  all this is a much better conspiracy story than the CIA setting a honey trap for Assange.