Assange Charged With Espionage And Media Rushes To Protect Their ‘Journalist’

Assange Charged With Espionage And Media Rushes To Protect Their ‘Journalist’

Assange Charged With Espionage And Media Rushes To Protect Their ‘Journalist’

Wikileaks Founder Julian Assange is in big trouble. First Ecuador kicked him out of their embassy. Secondly, his chickens are coming home to roost. The Department of Justice charged him with conspiracy and eighteen counts of violating the Espionage Act, and the media rushed into protection mode. 

“WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was charged Thursday with violating the Espionage Act by seeking out classified information, an escalation of the Trump administration’s pursuit of leakers that could have major First Amendment repercussions for news organizations.

An 18-count federal indictment alleges that Assange worked with a former Army intelligence analyst to obtain and disseminate secret documents — actions similar to reporting work at many traditional news organizations. The U.S. government, though, sought to distinguish the anti-secrecy advocate from a reporter.”

Holding Assange accountable for allegedly stealing classified information and selling it to the highest bidder is somehow bad news for actual members of the media.

Remember, Assange’s work got good people killed. Others are in hiding for what may be the rest of their lives. But sure! Let’s go with the ‘he’s a journalist so leave him alone!’ schtick.

Except that Julian Assange was never a journalist. Nor was Bradley Chelsea Manning. From the DOJ:

“The superseding indictment alleges that Assange was complicit with Chelsea Manning, a former intelligence analyst in the U.S. Army, in unlawfully obtaining and disclosing classified documents related to the national defense. Specifically, the superseding indictment alleges that Assange conspired with Manning; obtained from Manning and aided and abetted her in obtaining classified information with reason to believe that the information was to be used to the injury of the United States or the advantage of a foreign nation; received and attempted to receive classified information having reason to believe that such materials would be obtained, taken, made, and disposed of by a person contrary to law; and aided and abetted Manning in communicating classified documents to Assange.

After agreeing to receive classified documents from Manning and aiding, abetting, and causing Manning to provide classified documents, the superseding indictment charges that Assange then published on WikiLeaks classified documents that contained the unredacted names of human sources who provided information to United States forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, and to U.S. State Department diplomats around the world. These human sources included local Afghans and Iraqis, journalists, religious leaders, human rights advocates, and political dissidents from repressive regimes. According to the superseding indictment, Assange’s actions risked serious harm to United States national security to the benefit of our adversaries and put the unredacted named human sources at a grave and imminent risk of serious physical harm and/or arbitrary detention.”

Far too many in the media are ignoring a relevant piece of the indictment. Assange used the information as a sword. One designed to inflict great harm on the United States. Yet the media is turning backflips in an effort to give Assange a pass because JOURNALISM and FIRST AMENDMENT!! 

“There is a fair debate to be had over whether Assange is a journalist and Wikileaks a news organization. In the context of the Espionage Act, however, this debate is irrelevant. Assange is under no obligation to keep the U.S. government’s secrets. If Assange can be charged with receiving classified information, then what is to stop the government from bringing similar charges against the New York Times or Bloomberg News?”

First of all, Assange isn’t a U.S. citizen and he’s made it clear he hates America. Secondly, as I’ve stated above, Assange isn’t a journalist nor is he an American so our Constitutional rights do not apply to him. Third, is Bloomberg in the business of selling out our national security for their own gain to the detriment of our country? If they are, then yes, they do have a problem.

Edward Snowden can go pound sand.

Meanwhile, the additional argument is that Obama didn’t prosecute!

Problem is, Obama used the press as a weapon. Now the press is weaponized against Trump and has been for the last three years.

I have no sympathy for Julian Assange. He made his bed and will have to deal with the consequences. In my opinion, charges of espionage is the least the DOJ can do for the lives that Assange and Manning put at risk.

Feature Photo Credit: DonkeyHotey at Flickr.com, cropped and modified

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6 Comments
  • David Lentz says:

    Speech is an activity and not a profession.

  • Wozzup says:

    Kind of says it all doesn’t it about how the Left views things……….

    Assange makes an unauthorised, unselective and dangerously irresponsible and reckless release of highly sensitive, secret information and he is a “hero”. Trump authorises the (selective) release of the FISA court information that made unjust, fabricated claims against him designed to justify a breach of the law and of his civil and Constitutional rights, by crooked deep state operatives and he is a “traitor”.

    It’s never about principle with the Left. it is always about the side.

  • rbj1 says:

    So Assange published the names of our Afghan confidential informants, with the foreknowledge that it could/would lead to deaths.

    I don’t want him prosecuted here in America for espionage.

    I want him prosecuted for accessory to murder.

    In Afghanistan. By the Afghan government. According to whatever law Afghanistan uses. And subject to Afghanistan punishment.

  • GWB says:

    Let’s go with the ‘he’s a journalist so leave him alone!’ schtick.
    Sorry, but – despite what the courts might say – journalists are NOT a protected class, and are not exempt from the laws governing theft of classified information. He conspired to violate the classified info laws. That’s MUCH different from ” What do you mean the information you just handed me is classified?”
    (I’m still not OK with it, but the person receiving classified unsolicited shouldn’t be held to the same standard as the person handling the classified, or the person actually soliciting criminal activity.)

    and aided and abetted her him
    FIFY, DoJ.

    If Assange can be charged with receiving classified information, then what is to stop the government from bringing similar charges against the New York Times or Bloomberg News?
    Exactly. There is NOTHING THAT SHOULD stop the gov’t from pursuing those who publish classified info, knowing it’s classified AND knowing it will harm US interests.
    “Journalist” is NOT a protected class, despite what the kings in black robes say.

    Edward Snowden can go pound sand.
    He should BE pounded. With a hammer. Until he stops moving.
    (Though I’ll back off that a little, since his traitorous actions also helped uncover a bunch of tyrannical crap the gov’t was doing.)

    Obama declined to use the Espionage Act against Assange
    And the statute of limitations is still alive and ticking, so it really DOESN’T MATTER what 0bama didn’t do.

  • Skillyboo says:

    Yet they’ve all but ignored the raid on Bryan Carmody’s home in San Francisco to find out who his source is regarding the death of public defender Jeff Adachi. Seems investigating leftists is a crime and not freedom of the press.

  • GWB says:

    A good bit on the First Amendment issues of the indictments here:
    https://reason.com/2019/05/23/theory-of-revised-julian-assange-indictment-could-apply-to-ordinary-reporters/
    He actually only finds potential impact on indictments 15-17.

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