“It was perhaps too brilliant”

When you have been exchanged in a person, you feel left alone, you react angrily, you are bitter and you would like to vent your anger. As loud as possible if possible. Even more so, when you have connected your own life with that of the other, admired person in such a way that you have given up your previous life for it.

New world order

Daniel domscheit-berg was enthusiastic about the idea of disclosing secrets to the public and thus taking on the powerful of this world. And he was fascinated by julian assange, who for him was something like the promoter of a new world order without hierarchies and with free access to all possible information. "I am convinced that the project was ingenious. It was perhaps too ingenious to work on the first try." Domscheit-berg writes in the foreword about wikileaks, a forum where he felt at home from the start because he met people who were interested in the same topics as he was. Until then, domscheit-berg had worked as an IT expert and spent his free time working on open source projects, the chaos computer club and tinkering with various network solutions.

A task for the meaning of life

what he was missing was a task that gave his life meaning. It came in the form of wikileaks and julian assange, whom domscheit-berg was fascinated by from the beginning: "my thought when i saw him for the first time: cool guy." And "i was impressed by julian's performance. (…) i was flattered that he wanted to work with me." A perfect symbiosis, as it seems at least in the beginning. On the one hand, this will be disrupted by domscheit-berg getting to know assange better. Including his human weaknesses or peculiarities, such as the habit of not changing his shirt for days on end, working immobile at the computer for hours on end, or being inconsistent. On the other hand, domscheit-berg gradually became more familiar with the inner workings of wikileaks and more critical of the hardware, the poor equipment, the lack of staff, and of assange. An attitude that ultimately leads to a rift between the two of them.

Personal review

"Inside wikileaks" is a very personal review by daniel domscheit-berg, which is why the book is neither a literary masterpiece nor a neutral documentation that sifts and weighs all available sources. But it is also not a personal reckoning with a former friend, but an attempt to come to terms with a period in his life and perhaps in this way to come to terms with himself. Whether this is credible is something every reader must decide for themselves.

The film of the same name with daniel bruhl as daniel domscheit-berg and benedict cumberbatch is based among other things on this book. It runs on 31. October in germany.

About the book:
daniel domscheit-berg: inside wikileaks. My time at the world's most dangerous website. Ullstein, 9,99 euro

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