A new crowdfunding initiative has launched with the goal of making it untenable to hold public office and destroying all governments. Described by Business Insider as a “a deranged Kickstarter or IndieGoGo for political murder,” Assassination Market is crowdfunding bounties for world leaders and heads of state in Bitcoins.
The site is running on the Tor network, an “open network that helps you defend against traffic analysis.” This helps to protect the creator of the project and participants from being identified.
A means of verifying identity as an assassin is detailed on an information page on the site. Assassins are told to pledge at least 1 bitcoin ahead of the event and include an encrypted text file that includes information on when the killing will take place plus some additional information. The creator of the initiative takes 1% of the bounty for his “services.”
All targets are user-submitted. US figures included on the list include President Barack Obama and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. Bernanke is currently commanding the largest bounty at over ฿124. Bitcoin prices have been fluctuating wildly over the past 24-48 hours after hitting a peak of $900 per Bitcoin overnight. Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox currently has Bitcoins valued at $595 a piece, which would place Bernanke’s bounty at right around $87,000.
The high bounty on Bernanke is certainly indicitive of the Bitcoin ethos. The digital cryptocurrency was created to disrupt the power of the Federal Reserve over global monetary policy.
Forbes writer Andy Greenberg has been in contact with someone identifying himself as the creator of the site, going by the pseudonym Kuwubatake Sanjuro. Sanjuro says that the idea was born from recent NSA surveillance revelations…
Being forced to alter my every happy memory during internet activity, every intimate moment over the phone with my loved ones, to also include some of the people I hate the most listening in, analysing the conversation, was the inspiration I needed to embark on this task. After about a week of muttering ‘they must all die’ under my breath every time I opened a newspaper or turned on the television, I decided something had to be done. This is my contribution to the cause.Sanjuro, via Forbes
This project is already well into felony territory by United States law. Threatening harm to a public official is a serious felony in the US.
Sanjuro, a self-described “crypto-terrorist,” is placing his faith in cryptogrophy to protect him from future government action. He says he has gone above and beyond to protect his identity and the identities of participants.