If you’re just interested in just the NYT article, it’s after the next red heading about Halfway down. Thank you!
For many(mostly misinformed or uninformed … maybe both?) Julian Assange is a revolutionary hero. Now to be perfectly honest, there was a brief period of time that I bought into Assange’s BS, but don’t buy the hype folks. This goes far beyond the “right of free speech and press”. There is a reason Assange has refused to man up and leave the Embassy of Ecuador, London. Supporters, donors and the crowds have moved on. Assange betrayed everyone, including them. Sure there is a few here and there, but nothing it once was.
Little did Assange supporters know whether just ignorant, uninformed or just in denial while purchasing stock into the red pill or blue pill fringe conspiracy martyr narrative, seemingly until after the 2016 U.S. Elections— Assange was simply an agent for the Russian Federation.. In 2011, Assange had accepted a position with RT, a Russian government funded TV station. Even more odd, Julian Assange always perpetuated to leftists that he was one of them, a slightly further left-of-center kinda guy. Definitely no centrist. Later he attempted to promote himself as none other than a moderate who has no political leanings, he(just like every other shill, spy and loyalist) claimed to be just in search of the truth. Yet, Assange was full on attacking U.S. democrats and had pure blind hatred for Hillary Clinton.
And who else was? Former KGB officer and current Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Not long after, Assange began taking on a more conservative rightist ideology, so much, that once Trump Administration finally kinda admitted that Russia interfered in U.S. Elections, both he and Assange were the victims of a left-wing conspiracy perhaps Antifa. Then in July, 2018, White House Special Counsel Robert Muller & Department of Justice indicted 12 Russian Agents. Then just last month, another 7 GRU military intelligence agents were indicted. It appears that most(if not all) roads lead to Julian Assange, a former employee of the Russian state funded TV station, Russia Today(RT).
It was then that Assange now desperate for relevancy, shifted from left wing darling to Alt-Right Trumpist. His rhetoric was amplified, accusing the very hosts he was leaching off— of none other than human rights violations. Damn them for not providing him with high speed internet and no longer paying for a closed telephone and fax line. In was another weak attempt to get them to cave into his selfish demands. Suddenly he began occasionally speaking about the “deep state” conspiracy during the 2018 U.S. elections.
Comrade Assange’s Dangerous Immunity Deal
What is becoming clear now that we know Assange has been indicted, also considering James Comey’s comments back in 2017 and his interference in the immunity deal that the Department of Justice and the CIA were secretly brokering with Comrade Assange, Wikileaks released the DNC emails and personal information of DNC staffers and politicians was solely on behalf of Russia who had recently hacked into the DNC servers. Still, vast majority of Assange supporters I’ve discussed Wikileaks with, most still have no clue he was offered an immunity deal and had already stated he’d outright refuse one. For those who don’t know, the Assange immunity deal basically outlined that in exchange for not releasing classified CIA material, they would allow him to testify against bad actors. Assange claimed he would have refused it anyway, but Comey already raised enough hell that the deal was off the table. Not out of spite, but because the FBI had evidence and sworn affidavits indicating that Assange himself didn’t get the hacked DNC material and individual’s personal information from insiders, disgruntle employees or some mysterious flash drive in the mail. but had personally agreed to release the information on Russia’s behalf under the ruse of journalism, free press and truth. This gave Russia plausible deniability.
It is now established that the personal emails exchanged between DNC staffers, volunteers and heads, credit card and social security numbers, the identities of CIA operatives under official cover as State department staff were compromised was a strategy by Russia to split the Democratic Party up between hard leaning progressives and establishment, Blue Dog Democrats factions. This largely due the popular progressive leaning Senator Bernie Sanders from Vermont and former Senator, Secretary of State, First Lady and alleged serial killer, child pimp aka “my husband was president qualifies me for the Oval Office” Hillary Rodham Clinton. Assange agreed to do so, effectively becoming an agent of Russia.
Unfortunately Assange’s remaining fanboys and girls have yet to accept that Assange is not a hero or martyr. His attacks on the DNC, Bush & Obama Administrations and Clinton campaign was an attack on you, regardless of your political leanings. If not, why did he stand by Russia through journalist massacre which most remain unsolved to this day. The Crimea land grab with Pro-Russian rebels, hundreds of tanks and soldiers stripped of their flags and patches entered Crimea from Russia mowing down civilians, not only violating the Geneva Convention, but what Russia pushed as a war crime following WWII and the Security Council voted it in. What about Pro-Russian rebels funded and armed by Russia’s foreign intelligence agency SVR RF and military intelligence GRU and shooting down of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17?
The U.S. did some things worthy of investigation and punishment, but Russia is the last country to dictate to another about such issues. Assange is more than welcome to go to Moscow and tell us exactly what’s going there. As they say, don’t bite the hand that feeds you… Don’t expect Assange to either.
Snowden v. Assange
Former National Security Agency whistleblower Snowden has criticized WikiLeaks for failing to redact sensitive information in the hacked DNC emails, allowing credit card and Social Security numbers of party donors and guests to tumble into public view. That criticism and WikiLeaks’ behavior confirm that the group’s victims extend beyond political fat cats
-Paul Hare, former British ambassador to Cuba from 2001-04. He now teaches international relations at Boston University.
It’s was a pretty harsh blow to Assange and his fans when former NSA whistleblower, Edward Snowden spoke against Julian Assange, along with unethical and illegal methods concerning Wikileaks. Assange not only illegally obtained classified documents that supposedly exposed U.S. wrongdoing such as war crimes, when at best; pretty much narrates the ugly reality and daily grind of war and diplomatic relations. Worse, they obtained hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee(DNC) and published them without redacting personal information of members, donors and voters— which has absolutely has no public value, but dire consequences. The consequences had/has no impact on the Russia Federation/Assange’s enemies. Just innocent American citizens that he dared called “collateral damage”. That’s also what Timothy McVeigh said when asked why he knowingly bombed the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building with children inside. It’s almost as if Assange’s primary goal was not just to expose U.S. government wrongdoing, but to humiliate and out ordinary people on personal matters. Then invite anyone willing to abuse and destroy them. Identity theft is rampant; out-of-control and the very same type of people that provides Wikileaks with classified material.
There is a fine line between what Assange did and Snowden, but one thing is for certain. regardless of one’s political leanings— however, these men are not heroes. Snowden exposed the NSA and Intelligence Community(IC)’s mass surveillance programs; PRISM and Boundless Informant, Julian Assange not only used hackers to obtain classified material, but preyed and relied heavily on lonely, vulnerable and troubled individuals on behalf of the Russian Federation.
In an Article from BU Today:
Boston University’s Paul Hare begs to differ with those who admire Assange. When Edward Snowden thinks you have a big mouth, Hare says, you may have a problem. Former National Security Agency whistleblower Snowden has criticized WikiLeaks for failing to redact sensitive information in the hacked DNC emails, allowing credit card and Social Security numbers of party donors and guests to tumble into public view. That criticism and WikiLeaks’ behavior confirm that the group’s victims extend beyond political fat cats, says Hare, a senior lecturer at the Pardee School of Global Studies and former British diplomat.
—Why Julian Assange and WikiLeaks Aren’t Heroes,—Rich Barlow, BU Today 2017
America, we have a problem
Vast majority of Americans(republicans, L/l-ibertarians and democrats alike) are grossly mistaken in both their perception and interpretation of the Constitution. The Bill of Rights doesn’t apply to you, I or the people.
It simply applies solely to the government.
People believe it’s actually a universal guarantee between us all Americans to say what we want, when we want, to who we want, where we want and yes, how. Alex Jones was rightfully removed from media platforms, pundits immediately began shouting “free speech”. It quickly evolved into this week’s “ATTICA, ATTICA” chant. What it also means? It means Assange is not American. For Assange supporters, that’s a good thing and is in his favor. Not only would he still be granted numerous inalienable rights, the most serious charges such as treason, aiding the enemy and such isn’t in play here. So let’s quit with the theatrics.
About three years ago I was at an event and the subject quickly evolved into Snowden and Assange. It became evident that the most outspoken supporters for Assange and Snowden that evening had zero experience and worse— little to no understanding of military tactics, strategy, intelligence, national security and foreign policy. If it couldn’t get any worse, supporters of Assange especially— couldn’t honestly answer exactly he accomplished or was accomplishing? What exactly did he do that served in the public’s interest? There was a lot of spin and martyr was tossed around a lot. Some actually played “the truth” card. It was sad. If Assange was concerned about “truth” then he’d have no problem facing charges in a U.S. Federal Court, clear his name as a journalist serving in the best interest of Americans and the world. He certainly would be able to present all this evidence of malfeasance. Then again, something tells me that illegally obtained private cables between military field commanders and senior diplomats have no real value here. Especially coming from individuals who exposed this with questionable integrity. Here’s people stealing, cheating, scamming and lying and ducking like a coward who shot a man in the back then hides under a blanket, but we’re to trust these “facts” they’ve provided.
I can assure you that if gross injustice and malfeasance was rampant at that level, the whistle would have been blown long ago. If that’s not consoling enough for you, the mainstream media, political pundits and professional trolls posing as journalists have yet to report anything of substantial value.
The sick and sad reality is— most people(At least Americans) are guided by media headlines, mostly from pundits operating as “journalist activists”(Hannity, 2018)” or political commentators with obvious political leanings. Some do read the cliff notes and quotes, which is not entirely complete. Many that have a bit more knowledge of the subject, rely on biased punditry, someone dictates and focuses on bits to appeal to their consumer’s emotions— making shocking statements and accusations out of whole cloth. Look, an opinion piece only tells one’s perspective on an issue or two. Rarely do people seek the facts, but rather they seek confirmation. comfort and reassurance. When you want to believe something, the truth or opposing views are “fake news”, lies or some conspiracy that is threatening your truth. If reading, watching or engaging people with opposing views is so dangerous, then there is a good likelihood you’ve been duped.
“Assange’s actions, if not challenged, threaten core elements of diplomatic practice … and could negatively impact how diplomacy is practiced around the world,” Hare, Britain’s former ambassador to Cuba, wrote in a recent column for the online site The Conversation.
—Paul Hare, Britain’s former ambassador to Cuba, wrote in a recent column for the online site The Conversation
Sweden’s Rape Investigation, Assange gets Immunity from the #MeToo Movement and Long overstayed his Welcome
In a stunning move last year, Sweden dropped it’s investigation into the rape accusations against Julian Assange. His accuser was ‘shocked’ when they opted to drop it, lashing out at authorities in what some considered a political stunt. Why? Some have theorized that Sweden was revolting against President Trump and the United States. What was completely outrageous, is that long after Swedish authorities dropped their so-called “investigation” and British authorities obviously backed-off from the Ecuadorian embassy, Assange simply refused to leave. Worse, he falsely alleged that they[Ecuadorian Foreign Ministry] was “secretly plotting” to end his asylum status and extradite him to the United States. Of course, all this was supposedly to silence him via lethal injection.
It’s obvious that Assange not only has overstayed his welcome, but is an entitled brat who is so self-important. He not only refused to pay for his own living expenses, but expects to be afforded a life of luxury from a dependent developing country. Not only has he paid little-to-no rent, but expects up-to-date internet service, a new secure fax machine and secure phone line. All that, while bilking millions from Wikileaks’ donors advances from interviews and publishing deals.
Let’s be honest here, he’s hiding behind asylum in the Ecuadorian Embassy under the ruse that “if Sweden successfully got him on their soil, there is no doubt he would be extradited to the United States and face a death sentence”.
Long before he was indicted by the United States, the narrative by team Assange was “that he would love nothing more than to clear his name and would be undoubtedly cleared by authorities on rape allegations”. Truth is, vast majority of countries have an extradition policy with the United States, virtually all of them refuse to extradite Americans— let alone anyone else, unless the U.S. explicitly agrees to void their pursuit of the death penalty. Truth is, has little to do with leaking “classified information”, because as most know, Assange was all but guaranteed protection from the death penalty from not only President Obama, but President Trump who even perpetuated that Assange was a “journalist”.
Assange feared the rape allegations. Keep in mind he refused to meet Swedish investigators at the Ecuadorian Embassy. The United States hadn’t charged him, however, he knew there was zero percent chance that he would ever be indicted and face the death penalty in the U.S. Even if the U.K. apprehended him, officials certainly would require the U.S. to agree not to seek the death penalty.
When you look into his behavior & course of conduct with women throughout his life, the picture becomes a bit clearer. Even more troubling now, that an indictment is being handed down less than a month after White House Special Counsel Robert Mueller indicted 12 Russians staying in the United States.
Now that these charges have been revealed, certainly Assange supporters will now be energized and will continue to falsely assert that the only reason he stays holed up and act like he’s king of the Ecuadorian Embassy in the U.K., is because he fears and shouldn’t face the death penalty. Assange is and still is a coward. It’s shameful that some of the very folks who asserted themselves as victims and supporters behind the #MeToo movement, who demand that everyone believe victims first, are quick to support Assange. The very rule that they applied to Judge Kavanaugh, should apply to Julian Assange. So called “truth seekers” should always do such. Assange made it clear that he would clear his good name once it was guaranteed the death penalty was off the table. It’s a fact, there is a zero percent chance that the U.S. would seek the death penalty for Julian Assange. Many legals experts have made it clear that he is not U.S. citizen so treason is off the table and the charges they would seek probably wouldn’t result in a lengthy sentence let alone the death penalty.
Julian Assange is no hero. He is an arrogant coward, that at the very least should have met with Swedish authorities to clear up the “so-called” false rape allegations. Since he refused, at the very least; if he had an ounce of integrity and values, he’d at least treat The Republic of Ecuador with some respect.
From the New York Times:
By Charlie Savage, Adam Goldman and Michael S. Schmidt
WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has secretly filed criminal charges against the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, a person familiar with the case said, a drastic escalation of the government’s yearslong battle with him and his anti-secrecy group.
Top Justice Department officials told prosecutors over the summer that they could start drafting a complaint against Mr. Assange, current and former law enforcement officials said. The charges came to light late Thursday through an unrelated court filing in which prosecutors inadvertently mentioned them.
“The court filing was made in error,” said Joshua Stueve, a spokesman for the United States attorney’s office for the Eastern District of Virginia. “That was not the intended name for this filing.”
Mr. Assange has lived for years in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London and would have to be arrested and extradited if he were to face charges in federal court, altogether a multistep diplomatic and legal process.
The disclosure came as the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, is investigating links between President Trump’s associates and Russia’s 2016 election interference. WikiLeaks published thousands of emails that year from Democrats during the presidential race that were stolen by Russian intelligence officers. The hackings were a major part of Moscow’s campaign of disruption.
Though the legal move against Mr. Assange remained a mystery on Thursday, charges centering on the publication of information of public interest — even if it was obtained from Russian government hackers — would create a precedent with profound implications for press freedoms.
[Mr. Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London for years. Here’s how he got there.]
Mr. Assange has been in prosecutors’ sights for years because of WikiLeaks’s publication of thousands of secret government documents. Mr. Assange and his upstart website rose to prominence when Chelsea Manning, a low-ranking Army intelligence analyst, handed over thousands of classified Pentagon and State Department documents to WikiLeaks, which began publishing them in 2010.
Barry Pollack, an American lawyer representing Mr. Assange, denounced the apparent development.
“The news that criminal charges have apparently been filed against Mr. Assange is even more troubling than the haphazard manner in which that information has been revealed,” Mr. Pollack wrote in an email. “The government bringing criminal charges against someone for publishing truthful information is a dangerous path for a democracy to take.”
Seamus Hughes, a terrorism expert at George Washington University who closely tracks court cases, uncovered the filing and posted it on Twitter.
A Justice Department spokesman declined to say on Thursday what led to the inadvertent disclosure. It was made in a recently unsealed filing in an apparently unrelated sex-crimes case charging a man named Seitu Sulayman Kokayi with coercing and enticing an underage person to engage in unlawful sexual activity. Mr. Kokayi was charged in early August, and on Aug. 22, prosecutors filed a three-page document laying out boilerplate arguments for why his case at that time needed to remain sealed.
While the filing started out referencing Mr. Kokayi, federal prosecutors abruptly switched on its second page to discussing the fact that someone named “Assange” had been secretly charged, and went on to make clear that this person was the subject of significant publicity, lived abroad and would need to be extradited — suggesting that prosecutors had inadvertently pasted text from a similar court filing into the wrong document and then filed it.
“Another procedure short of sealing will not adequately protect the needs of law enforcement at this time because, due to the sophistication of the defendant and the publicity surrounding the case, no other procedure is likely to keep confidential the fact that Assange has been charged,” prosecutors wrote.
They added, “The complaint, supporting affidavit, and arrest warrant, as well as this motion and the proposed order, would need to remain sealed until Assange is arrested in connection with the charges in the criminal complaint and can therefore no longer evade or avoid arrest and extradition in this matter.”
The Justice Department has been studying how to charge Mr. Assange or WikiLeaks with some kind of criminal offense since the site began publishing its trove of secret military and diplomatic documents. Prosecutors, for example, toyed with the idea of charging Mr. Assange as a conspirator in Ms. Manning’s crime of unauthorized disclosure of secrets related to national defense. And it eventually became public that a grand jury in the Eastern District of Virginia was investigating people with links to WikiLeaks.
But even as the Obama administration brought criminal charges in an unprecedented number of leak-related cases, it apparently held back from charging Mr. Assange. Members of the Obama legal policy team from that era have said that they did not want to establish a precedent that could chill investigative reporting about national security matters by treating it as a crime.
Their dilemma came down to a question they found no clear answer to: Is there any legal difference between what WikiLeaks was doing, at least in that era, and what traditional news media organizations, like The New York Times, do in soliciting and publishing information they obtain that the government wants to keep secret?
And such organizations, including The Times, have published many news articles based on documents that WikiLeaks published starting in 2010, including tranches of logs of significant combat events in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and diplomatic cables leaked by Ms. Manning, and the Democratic emails in the 2016 election that were hacked by Russia.
The debate over whether to charge Mr. Assange continued under the Trump administration and was being accelerated by former Attorney General Jeff Sessions, according to former government officials involved in the discussions, about whether Mr. Assange qualified as a journalist.
Charges against Mr. Assange raised the question of whether the Justice Department abandoned concerns about setting a precedent that would chill press freedoms after WikiLeaks’s role in Russia’s 2016 election interference and its publication that year of documents about C.I.A. hacking tools, or whether prosecutors decided that the new circumstances raised by the publication of the stolen emails opened a new legal avenue.
While prosecutors in the Manning era were focused on WikiLeaks’s publication of classified government documents — activity that they analyzed primarily through the lens of the Espionage Act — the Democratic emails were not government documents or national security secrets.
In July — a month before the erroneous court filing — Mr. Mueller charged 12 Russians with several crimes related to hacking and disseminating the emails as part of a foreign conspiracy to interfere in the election, which that indictment styled in part as a conspiracy to defraud the United States. Part of that indictment referred to WikiLeaks, which it identified as “Organization 1.”
“In order to expand their interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, the conspirators transferred many of the documents they stole from the D.N.C. and the chairman of the Clinton campaign to Organization 1,” the July indictment said, referring to the presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton. “The conspirators, posing as Guccifer 2.0, discussed the release of the stolen documents and the timing of those releases with Organization 1 to heighten their impact on the 2016 U.S. presidential election.”
Mr. Stueve’s explanation about the inadvertent filing left open the possibility that the language in the unrelated court document was lifted from a draft document written in preparation for eventual charges, not necessarily one handed up by a grand jury and sealed by a court.
Mr. Assange became something of a cult figure for those advocating greater transparency in government and in the corporate world. The prominence of WikiLeaks also generated a debate about the boundaries of journalism and the protections of free expression in the digital age.
At the same time, Mr. Assange was pursued by Swedish prosecutors on charges of sexual abuse — ultimately forcing him to seek refuge in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London in the summer of 2012. He has remained there since.
In October, Mr. Assange sued the Ecuadorean government for limiting his visitors and online activity.
WikiLeaks has been attacked for its publication of the hacked Democratic emails. In April 2017, the C.I.A. director at the time, Mike Pompeo, called it a “hostile intelligence service” that was aided by Russia and accused Mr. Assange of making “common cause with dictators.”
Mr. Hughes, the terrorism expert, who is the deputy director of the Program on Extremism at George Washington University, posted a screenshot of the court filing on Twitter shortly after The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that the Justice Department was preparing to prosecute Mr. Assange.
“You guys should read EDVA court filings more,” Mr. Hughes wrote, “cheaper than a Journal subscription.”
Katie Benner and Mark Mazzetti contributed reporting.