Amazon has bowed to pressure from the US government and removed Wikileaks from its servers, just days after the whistle-blowing website migrated to Amazon’s EC2 cloud infrastructure.
Wikileaks has whipped up a storm after publishing a series of secret government cables earlier this week, prompting US Senator Joe Lieberman – chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee – to demand that Amazon and other firms cut ties with the site.
Amazon has since told Lieberman it had decided to terminate its relationship with Wikileaks, the Senator revealed yesterday.
“The company's decision to cut off Wikileaks now is the right decision and should set the standard for other companies Wikileaks is using to distribute its illegally-seized material,” Lieberman wrote.
However, while the website went down briefly on Wednesday, it is back up and running today, apparently hosted on servers in Europe.
And its Twitter feed is still live – the firm used the social networking site to hit back at Amazon, stating: “If Amazon are so uncomfortable with the first amendment, they should get out of the business of selling books.”
Wikileaks angered the US government by publishing the first batch of over 250,000 leaked cables believed to have been illegally acquired by a US soldier from the worldwide Siprnet US military and government network, on Sunday.
The firm has already drawn the ire of the US military after revealing confidential documents on the Iran and Afghanistan wars earlier this year.
Founder Julian Assange has since gone underground, which is perhaps a good thing since former vice presidential hopeful Sarah Palin is now gunning for him.
She has called on the Obama administration to pursue Assange with the same urgency as it hunts al Qaeda and Taliban leaders, and stated on Facebook that Assange is “an anti-American operative with blood on his hands,” because past leaked documents had revealed the identity of more than 100 Afghan informants to the Taliban.
International police agency Interpol has meanwhile posted details of an arrest warrant for Assange over rape allegations that some have suggested are part of a black operations campaign to discredit him.
The Independent claims police sources have confirmed Assange is in the UK, but have so far refrained from arresting him due to technical delays.