Probably not, but wouldn’t it be wild if he did?
The background: PBS’s Frontline hosted a chat with Brian Manning, father of accused leaker Bradley.
Filmmaker Marcela Gaviria and Frontline producer Martin Smith hosted the Cover It Live affair that started just after 1 p.m. EST.
At 2:25, a comment from a user calling himself Julian Assange appeared.
“Why did Frontline not do basic fact checking on the false and libelous statement “Julian said ‘Informants deserve to die'”? This has had substantial re-reportage based on its airing by Frontline. Its speaker, David Leigh is well known to be locked into tawdry personal vendetta against WikiLeaks (as any check of his twitter feed davidleigh3 would show). The statement has been repeatedly denied by me, is the subject of pre-litigation legal action and two Spiegel reporters who were at the table, John Goertz and Marcel Rosenbach (the only independent witnesses) deny it. Is this Frontline’s standards for journalism? Similarly, Why did Frontline present Daniel Domschiet Berg’s claims about WikiLeaks content sales as credible, when two thee prior accusations (in relation to Aftonposten, Aftonbladet and Al Jazeera) have been demonstrated to be wholesale inventions?”
User “Frontline” wrote this following: “Please note: FRONTLINE cannot confirm the identities of chat commenters.”
(Cover It Live makes moderators approve comments and questions, meaning the Frontline staff allowed Assange’s words to appear.)
Then Marcela Gaviria/Martin Smith chimed in:”We did talk with others about David Leigh’s allegation. Several people confirmed that you had initially wanted to publish all the Afghan War Logs without redacting names. We also allowed you to deny the charge. As for content sales, you mentioned in your interview that you had explored financial incentives to improve the reception of the Collateral Murder video. There is more about this in the transcript of your interview that is published on Frontline’s website.”
After taking one more comment, Manning said his time was up.
(There were also multiple comments from “David House,” who the elder Manning accused of supporting his son to gain 15 minutes of fame. Frontline issued the same disclosure statement about being unable to confirm identities.)