Inside WikiLeaks: girls, children and cat fights
The First Post guide to the more salacious revelations in Domscheit-Berg’s account of life with Julian Assange
The latest version of the story of WikiLeaks and its editor-in-chief Julian Assange hits the bookshops today - and there is no shortage of salacious detail.
Inside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the World's Most Dangerous Website is written by Daniel Domscheit-Berg, a former senior member of WikiLeaks who fell out with Assange over what he saw as his dictatorial behaviour.
Domscheit-Berg's opinion of Assange is encapsulated in his parting shot, delivered when he was fired - or resigned - in September 2010: "A leader communicates and cultivates trust. You are doing the exact opposite. You behave like a kind of emperor or slave trader."
Since excerpts from the book started appearing in the press, WikiLeaks has said it is taking legal action against Domscheit-Berg, accusing him of sabotaging the website.
The 32-year-old German now has his own whistleblowing website, Openleaks.org, which aims to "make whistleblowing safer and more widespread", suggesting this book is not the last we - or the world's governments - have heard of him.
Here are a few of the juicier tidbits from Domscheit-Berg's book, courtesy of various recent leaks:
Assange's four illegitimate childrenDomscheit-Berg writes: "Often I sat in large groups and listened to Julian boast about how many children he had fathered in various parts of the world. He seemed to enjoy the idea of lots and lots of Julians, one on every continent. Whether he took care of any of these alleged children, or whether they existed at all, was another question."
Gawker, the source of this leak, claims to have done some snooping on this allegation and says that three former WikiLeaks volunteers back up the assertion that there are at least four Assange juniors. The youngest, it says, is six months old, while the oldest is 20-year-old Daniel, who lives in Assange's home town of Melbourne, Australia, and Is already known from press reports.
Assange's nemesis - a cat called HERR Schmitt"Julian was constantly battling for dominance, even with my tomcat Herr Schmitt," writes Domscheit-Berg in the German-language edition, according to AFP.
"Ever since Julian lived with me in Wiesbaden [the cat] has suffered from psychosis. Julian would constantly attack the animal. He would spread out his fingers like a fork and grab the cat's throat."
Herr Schmitt, however, didn't take Assange's puny efforts lying down, and sometimes "dispatched Julian with a quick swipe of the paw".
Assange's comedown at WikiLeaksWhen Domscheit-Berg left WikiLeaks in September last year, there were still security flaws that left whistleblowers open to identification. So Domscheit-Berg and the website's 'architect' took control of WikiLeaks' submissions system, according to Forbes.
Domscheit-Berg writes: "Children shouldn't play with guns.That was our argument for removing the submissions platform from Julian's control."
This may explain why whistleblowers have been unable to submit documents to WikiLeaks since summer last year.
Assange's bad table mannersAssange's personal hygiene and eating habits suggest he was "brought up more by wolves rather than humans".
Assange's favourite type of woman"Julian's main criterion for a woman was simple. She had to be young. Preferably younger than 22. And it went without saying that she couldn't question him. 'She has to be aware of her role as a woman', he used to say," Domscheit-Berg writes, according to Fox News. ·
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