Thursday, July 7, 2011
According to this story in the Manchester Guardian, Wikileaks founder Julian Assange (pictured) may have to renegotiate his nearly £1 million book contract with Edinburgh-based publishers Canongate and the US publisher Alfred A Knopf. Apparently, Assange is concerned that revelations in the memoir might give the United States information that it would use to try to extradite him to the United States so that it can prosecute him for aiding and abetting terrorists in connection with his involvement with Wikileaks.
Of course, Assange originally said that he needed the advance that he was paid to write a book that "would become one of the unifying documents of our generation" in order to pay his legal costs. Those costs mostly relate to his efforts to resist extradition to Sweden, where he is accused of rape and sexual assault. He may be better off in the United States. There, he can make a brave stand on principle and defend the ideology that fueled Wikileaks.
Neither or Assange or his publisher would talk to the Guardian about the rumors that the book deal has gone south. It remains to be seen whether Assange (and his lawyers) can be cajoled into submitting an unexpurgated manuscript or if the parties will work out a different (perhaps lesser) deal for a different (perhaps lesser) book