An explosive exposé of the inner workings of the whistle-blowing phenomenon and the dissent and infighting that has rocked it.
This is the true story of Julian Assange and WikiLeaks from the insider who lived it all.
I first read about WikiLeaks about 6 months before the Afghan videos were released, and I was immediately intrigued by this group of people that could stand up against the higher powers in the world, expose lies and bring apparent justice. After the Afghan war diaries were leaked in July 2010, the organisation and Julian Assange became globally recognised (and in some cases, probably feared) and my fascination and admiration grew.
This book was quite disappointing; it was similar to a glossy celebrity column written by a bitter ex-lover. I read this because I wanted to know more about the organisation, what spurred certain decisions, and the nitty gritty inner workings. Instead, it was a mish-mash of insults, degrading descriptions of Julian Assange, and whining. Towards the end of the book it became apparent why Domscheit-Berg was belittling the organisation that he had departed – he’s opened his own whistleblowing website. Throughout the entire book I was scratching my head, wondering why he would choose to mention certain security and technical failures – and it was all because he was trying to paint his new website venture in a positive light. Unfortunately, he just comes across as a disgruntled employee. He’s used the exposure of WikiLeaks to try and promote himself and his website, knowing full well that the rest of the organisation cannot defend themselves. And that just screams ‘coward’.
I wouldn’t recommend this book unless you’re a journalist trying to dish dirt on Assange, or you’re an Assange fangirl who likes to know trivial and unimportant things – like the fact he has “the greasiest trousers I have ever seen”, bad hygiene, and that he doesn’t share spam meat (don’t ask).
I’m giving this a two star rating rather than one, simply because he did give some information about the inner workings of the organisation which was quite interesting. But the book should really have been called ‘Inside Julian Assange, by a man who wants to make money from someone else’s publicity.’