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I heard a guy is in prison for hacking a passenger airplane.

DID the CIA assassinate journalist Michael Hastings?

WikiLeaks’ release on Tuesday of a massive trove of secret CIA documents has reignited conspiracy theories which have swirled since 2013, with revelations the spy agency was attempting to remotely hack vehicles.

“As of October 2014 the CIA was also looking at infecting the vehicle control systems used by modern cars and trucks,” WikiLeaks writes. “The purpose of such control is not specified, but it would permit the CIA to engage in nearly undetectable assassinations.”

Hastings, an acclaimed war correspondent and vocal critic of government mass surveillance, died in the early hours of Tuesday, June 18, 2013, when his Mercedes C250 Coupe apparently lost control and burst into flames before slamming into a palm tree.

Witnesses to the accident, which occurred around 4:25am in the leafy Hancock Park neighbourhood of Los Angeles, said the car appeared to be travelling at top speed and was creating “sparks and flames” before it went off the road.

Just over 12 hours earlier, the 33-year-old BuzzFeed and Rolling Stone contributor had sent an email to colleagues and friends, warning he was onto a “big story” and was under investigation.

“The Feds are interviewing my ‘close friends and associates’,” he wrote in an email sent at around 1pm on Monday, June 17. “May be wise to immediately request legal counsel before any conversations or interviews about our news-gathering practices. I’m onto a big story and need to go off the radar for a bit. All the best, and hope to see you soon. Michael.”

Hastings’ final published article, ‘Why Democrats Love To Spy On Americans’, was highly critical of President Barack Obama and the US government’s domestic spying program, which had just been revealed by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Hastings accused the Obama administration and its allies in the FBI and Department of Justice of waging a war on “transparency supporters, whistleblowers and investigative reporters”.

Stupid will always find a way ...

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