[Ed. note: Old habits…]
Jeremy Hammond was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison Friday for his role in the December 2011 hacking of Strategic Forecasting (StratFor) and a number of other websites targeted by members of the so-called “hacktivist” group known as Anonymous. The feds had more than enough evidence to convict Hammond. He had a prior conviction on a similar crime and was potentially facing more than 30 years this time, so the best he could do was cop a plea deal. Before he was sentenced Friday by U.S. District Judge Loretta A. Preska, however, the 28-year-old hacker once known as “Anarchaos” had a political statement to share with the world, a statement that could be summarized in two words: Blame Bush.
Although he was only 15 when George W. Bush was elected president, Hammond declared in federal court in Manhattan, this was a traumatizing experience for him. “My introduction to politics was when George W. Bush stole the Presidential election in 2000, then took advantage of the waves of racism and patriotism after 9/11 to launch unprovoked imperialist wars against Iraq and Afghanistan,” Hammond declared in his manifesto. “I took to the streets in protest naively believing our voices would be heard in Washington and we could stop the war. Instead, we were labeled as traitors, beaten, and arrested.” Hammond added that he had “been arrested for numerous acts of civil disobedience on the streets of Chicago.”