Amazon Facing Growing Calls For Boycott After Cutting Off Wikileaks

Joe Lieberman, chairman of the senate homeland security committee, may be delighted with Amazon for cutting off access for Wikileaks, but its customers are not. There are growing calls for a boycott of the company — particularly as a review of the Wikileaks material has disclosed important information such as the efforts of the Obama Administration to block investigations into torture.

Lieberman, who is widely considered by civil libertarians as one of the most hostile senators to free speech values, reportedly had his staff pressure the company. Lieberman basically announced the discussion and, while saying that Amazon should have acted earlier, commended the company and called for all other companies to fall in line and cut the public off from the material.

Lieberman recently told news organizations what he expected in terms of coverage — announcing that Fox Business is my favorite and Fox generally, anything Rupert Murdoch owns.

Jonathan Turley

19 thoughts on “Amazon Facing Growing Calls For Boycott After Cutting Off Wikileaks”

  1. Mr. Moulton,

    Thank you for the highlights. Your observations are particularly valuable.

    How the mighty have fallen…

  2. Carlyle Moulton: I meant the Russian are particularly good not that they are the only ones.

  3. Swarthmore Mom.

    It is not just the Russians who are good at getting rid of enemies.

    I believe that anyone truly aware of conditions in the world would recognize that the US and UK Governments and powerful private interests in both countries are capable of murder and worse. They may not do it as often as the Russians but they do it.

    The two example I would point to are the murder of Dr David Kelly who exposed the Blair Government’s fabrications in the dossier on Iraq weapons of mass destruction used to justify Britain’s joining in the Iraq invasion and the really weird prosecution and conviction of Aafia Siddiqui and the attempts to make sure that she does not communicate with anyone in the outside world. This Andy Worthington post is a good introduction to Aafia’s case.

    Professor Turley.

    I for one would be very interested in any thoughts you have about the affair Aafia Siddiqui. ASt the risk of seeming impertinent I would ask if there are reasons why you do not want to comment on this particular issue as I have raised it in a blog comment some time ago.

  4. Amazon is doing what a corporation does, protecting its bottom line by doing favors for politicians (in return for favors done, anticipated or promised). Have not American ISP and content providers worked with foreign governments (China and Iran) to censor what their citizens have access to and make it more difficult to communicate among themselves during civil unrest? Why would the same thing not take place here?

  5. That pathetic individual is one of the main reasons I could not force myself to vote for Al Gore in 2000. By selecting Lieberman as his running mate, Gore demonstrated to me his inability to exercise good judgment.

  6. puzzling: The Russians are after Assange, and they are very successful in getting rid of their enemies.

  7. I remember the 2006 controversy about the cartoons of Muslim Prophet Muhammad, first published in Denmark but then later by Free Inquiry magazine in the United States. Bookstores like Borders and Waldenbooks pulled Free Inquiry from their shelves.

    My guess is that Amazon did the math weighing the financial impact of a small consumer backlash against the potential for regulatory or contract punishment by the government. The latter is clearly a bigger threat to the business.

    This Wikileaks incident with Amazon pressured to censor by the government is clearly a major story, and in combination with the recent domain name seizures by DHS is prompting activists to architect decentralized methods to avoid government meddling, like torrents for DNS services. No doubt Wikileaks has many technical options to them as government advances.

    I do expect Assange to be assassinated by 2012. I’m not sure how it will be framed. Perhaps as suicide. Or the act of a rogue vigilante.

  8. Buddha and Swathmore,

    Just thought I’d recommend joining “” It’s exactly what it sounds like. It’s a nice cheep way to try new authors, (although my public library’s great, it’s nice to be able to keep the good books).

  9. I am confident Amazon will feel the loss of my business … and my pocketbook will be heavy again.

  10. culheath,

    It’s not an act. He is truly a putz. Among other things.


    Sad but true, however, since I’m a collector, I tend to favor shops still dominated by Mom & Pop’s: used book stores. New books I have a fair degree of flexibility in avoiding Amazon. I just like their convenience, but B&N does online sales too.

  11. I’m amazed how often Lieberman acts like a putz. On the other hand maybe it’s not acting…maybe that’s how his hair looks when its on fire?

  12. Buddah: Very few mom and pop bookstores are left. San Francisco’s City Lights is still open.

  13. I’m done with Amazon. I even had some data on their cloud. Gone now.


    I hope B&N and the mom & pop’s appreciates the business.

  14. First it was this that drew the ire:

    “Amazon defends ‘Pedophile’s Guide’
    Another book protested in 2002 for advocating adult-child sex is still available on the site ”

    Now wikileaks.

    Someone is clearing out their desk.

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