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Julian Assange drafts his own story by himself with “Julian Assange The Unauthorised Autobiography”

Despite being rushed, unfinished and disowned by its subject – making it perhaps the first ever unauthorised autobiography – this book is surprisingly revealing about one of the most infuriating and self-defeating awkward customers ever to have been born. And it reminds us of the huge amount Julian Assange and WikiLeaks have contributed to this epochal time and how important is the principle of free publication. From the offset, it is hard not to be swept up in Assange’s passion for rebellion and protest - and for computer hacking. As a teenager he began sharing computer programmes on floppy disks and experimenting with the earliest of modems, teaming up with hackers across the world to sneak into the databases of the world’s biggest political and commercial organisations. He writes: “That’s how hacking begins. You want to get past a barrier that has been erected to keep you out”. Whether you take Assange as a reliable narrator (he himself seems ambivalent on the idea - as a young hacker he takes the handle Mendax “from Horace’s splendid mendax—nobly untruthful, or perhaps ‘delightfully deceptive’”) it is an exciting tale of “life on the run”, and the revelations, leaks and powergames that came to dominate his life and the media. Of course, the book was published against the will of the author and in one respect, Assange has reason to fret. It is an insightful and intimate account of a mercurial individual whose life and work polarises and divides opinion the world over. You don't know whether to believe the man who once gave himself the handle Splendid Mendax (nobly untruthful). Littered in his wake over the past 12 months are many well-known journalists, lawyers, activists and helpers who will have no more to do with him because of his congenital bloody-mindedness and what they see as his shaky grasp on the truth. Yet this book seems remarkably candid. He admits to measures of autism, arrogance and insensitivity and, in a rather bewildered passage, remarks that he can empty a room faster than most. RightBooks.in introduces the story of the Wikileaks founder, currently under house arrest and fighting extradition over sexual assault charges in Sweden, opens with Assange being taken to jail, the press photographers "scrabbling around the windows [of the police van] like crabs in a bucket", and delves back into his past as a computer hacker and "cypherpunk", where the first seeds of WikiLeaks were planted. It’s like a thriller to read, and www.rightbooks.in/product_details.asp?pid=9780857863850&Julian%20Assange%20The%20Unauthorised%20Autobiography fetches it before your straightaway.

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