The US Government Is Now Seeking To Arrest Julian Assange

The US and the UK are trying to capture, lure, try and convict on trumped up charges and execute Edward Snowden and Julian Assange for telling the truth. The US and the UK even admit it. And, you do nothing. Now, they have killed Jamal Khashoggi and they admit it, and again you do nothing. Who do you suppose will be next?

What message does your inaction send to the powers that be? Do you suppose? You’re telling them that they can do anything that they want and that you are powerless to stop them. Right?

CNN now report that US authorities have prepared charges to arrest the Wikileaks founder on grounds of having posted stolen, hacked and leaked information on the US government.

Seasons may come and go but Julian Assange remains locked in the Ecuadorian Embassy like a five year old who threatens to run away and only makes it to the end of the garden.

Despite clearly stating he would hand himself in were Obama to grant Chelsea Manning clemency, when Obama commuted Manning’s sentence, Assange remained hiding in the embassy broom cupboard.

Since 2012 Assange has been hiding in the Embassy where he was granted political asylum. This has made building a case against him difficult for the US Justice Department. But now sources have informed CNN that: ” Lawyers have found a way around first amendment concerns in the prosecution of Mr Assange”

Mike Pompeo commented that WikiLeaks “directed Chelsea Manning to intercept specific secret information, and it overwhelmingly focuses on the United States.”

“It’s time to call out WikiLeaks for what it really is: A non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia,” he added.

At a news conference yesterday Attorney General Jeff Sessions said that Assange’s arrest was now “a priority.”

“We are going to step up our effort and already are stepping up our efforts on all leaks,” he said.

“This is a matter that’s gone beyond anything I’m aware of. We have professionals that have been in the security business of the United States for many years that are shocked by the number of leaks and some of them are quite serious. So yes, it is a priority. We’ve already begun to step up our efforts and whenever a case can be made, we will seek to put some people in jail.”

Sources: US prepares charges to seek arrest of WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange

US authorities have prepared charges to seek the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, US officials familiar with the matter tell CNN.

The Justice Department investigation of Assange and WikiLeaks dates to at least 2010, when the site first gained wide attention for posting thousands of files stolen by the former US Army intelligence analyst now known as Chelsea Manning.

Prosecutors have struggled with whether the First Amendment precluded the prosecution of Assange, but now believe they have found a way to move forward.

During President Barack Obama’s administration, Attorney General Eric Holder and officials at the Justice Department determined it would be difficult to bring charges against Assange because WikiLeaks wasn’t alone in publishing documents stolen by Manning. Several newspapers, including The New York Times, did as well. The investigation continued, but any possible charges were put on hold, according to US officials involved in the process then.

The US view of WikiLeaks and Assange began to change after investigators found what they believe was proof that WikiLeaks played an active role in helping Edward Snowden, a former NSA analyst, disclose a massive cache of classified documents.

Assange remains holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London, seeking to avoid an arrest warrant on rape allegations in Sweden. In recent months, US officials had focused on the possibility that a new government in Ecuador would expel Assange and he could be arrested. But the left-leaning presidential candidate who won the recent election in the South American nation has promised to continue to harbor Assange.

Last week in a speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, CIA Director Mike Pompeo went further than any US government official in describing a role by WikiLeaks that went beyond First Amendment activity.

He said WikiLeaks “directed Chelsea Manning to intercept specific secret information, and it overwhelmingly focuses on the United States.”

“It’s time to call out WikiLeaks for what it really is: A non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia,” Pompeo said.

US intelligence agencies have also determined that Russian intelligence used WikiLeaks to publish emails aimed at undermining the campaign of Hillary Clinton, as part of a broader operation to meddle in the US 2016 presidential election. Hackers working for Russian intelligence agencies stole thousands of emails from the Democratic National Committee and officials in the Clinton campaign and used intermediaries to pass along the documents to WikiLeaks, according to a public assessment by US intelligence agencies.

Still, the move could be viewed as political, since Assange is untouchable as long as he remains in the Ecuadorian embassy, and Ecuador has not changed its stance on Assange’s extradition.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said at a news conference Thursday that Assange’s arrest is a “priority.”

“We are going to step up our effort and already are stepping up our efforts on all leaks,” he said. “This is a matter that’s gone beyond anything I’m aware of. We have professionals that have been in the security business of the United States for many years that are shocked by the number of leaks and some of them are quite serious. So yes, it is a priority. We’ve already begun to step up our efforts and whenever a case can be made, we will seek to put some people in jail.”

“We’ve had no communication with the Department of Justice and they have not indicated to me that they have brought any charges against Mr. Assange,” said Assange’s lawyer, Barry Pollack. “They’ve been unwilling to have any discussion at all, despite our repeated requests, that they let us know what Mr. Assange’s status is in any pending investigations. There’s no reason why WikiLeaks should be treated differently from any other publisher.”

Pollack said WikiLeaks is just like the Washington Post and the New York Times, which routinely publish stories based on classified information. WikiLeaks, he says, publishes information that is in “the public’s interest to know not just about the United States but other governments around the world.”

Assange has also compared WikiLeaks to a news media organization that uses documents provided by whistleblowers to expose the actions of governments and powerful corporations.

“Quite simply, our motive is identical to that claimed by the New York Times and The Post — to publish newsworthy content,” Assange wrote in a recent op-ed in The Washington Post. “Consistent with the U.S.

Constitution, we publish material that we can confirm to be true irrespective of whether sources came by that truth legally or have the right to release it to the media. And we strive to mitigate legitimate concerns, for example by using redaction to protect the identities of at-risk intelligence agents.”

In his speech last week, Pompeo rejected that characterization and said Assange should not be afforded constitutional free speech protections.

“Julian Assange has no First Amendment freedoms. He’s sitting in an Embassy in London. He’s not a US citizen,” Pompe said.

Rep. Peter King, R-New York, told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that based on CNN’s reporting, “I’m glad that the Justice Department has found a way to go after Assange. He’s gotten a free ride for too long.”

King said Assange has “caused tremendous damage to our national security, put American lives at risk.”

But Ben Wizner, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Speech, Privacy and Technology Project, argued that US prosecution of Assange sets a dangerous precedent.

“Never in the history of this country has a publisher been prosecuted for presenting truthful information to the public,” Wizner told CNN. “Any prosecution of WikiLeaks for publishing government secrets would set a dangerous precedent that the Trump administration would surely use to target other news organizations.”

The US and the UK are trying to capture, lure, try and convict on trumped up charges and execute Edward Snowden and Julian Assange for telling the truth. The US and the UK even admit it. And, you do nothing. Now, they have killed Jamal Khashoggi and they admit it, and again you do nothing. Who do you suppose will be next?

What message does your inaction send to the powers that be? Do you suppose? You’re telling them that they can do anything that they want and that you are powerless to stop them. Right?

FREE JULIAN:
WIKILEAKS:
The Top 100 Most Damaging Wikileaks (so far)
Search WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks: State Department cable “Detainees were raped”

WikiLeaks’ Assange says Ecuador seeking to end his asylum

By Alexandra Valencia, Reuters

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said on Monday that Ecuador is seeking to end his asylum in its London embassy and hand him over to the United States, but a judge rejected his lawsuit over embassy living conditions.

Assange spoke from the embassy via teleconference at a hearing in Quito of a lawsuit challenging the Ecuadorean government requiring him to pay for medical bills, phone calls and clean up after his pet cat.

He took refuge in the embassy six years ago to avoid extradition to Sweden in a sexual assault case that was later dropped. He remains there to avoid being jailed by Great Britain for violating the terms of his bail, which he has said would result in his being handed over to Washington.

During the hearing, Assange said the new rules were a sign Ecuador was trying to push him out, and said Ecuadorean President Lenin Moreno had already decided to end his asylum but had not yet officially given the order.

“If Mr. Assange wants to stay and he follows the rules … he can stay at the embassy as long as he wants,” said Attorney General Inigo Salvador, adding that Assange’s stay had cost the country $6 million.

Foreign Minister Jose Valencia declined to comment on Assange’s assertion that Ecuador sought to hand him over to the United States.

Judge Karina Martinez rejected the lawsuit, saying the Foreign Ministry was in charge of determining his living conditions.

Assange’s legal team said it immediately appealed the ruling.

Embassy staff had complained of Assange riding a skateboard in the halls, of playing soccer on the grounds and behaving aggressively with security personnel.

Ecuador’s government also objected to his making online commentary about sensitive political issues in other countries, including publishing opinions about the Catalonia separatist movement in Spain.

The new rules were meant to address these concerns, Salvador said.

The United Kingdom in August had assured Assange that he would not be extradited if he left the embassy, Salvador told reporters last week.

Valencia told Reuters last week that the government was “frustrated” by the lawsuit and that it would no longer intervene with British authorities on Assange’s behalf.

U.S. federal prosecutors in Alexandria, Virginia, have maintained a long-running grand jury investigation into WikiLeaks, which according to one source includes a probe into leaks of Central Intelligence Agency documents to the website.

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Confidential State Dept Cable Released by WikiLeaks “DETAINEES WERE RAPED”

Children tortured before parents, raped, all covered up by Bush/Cheney and our media

Americans will be sent to Gitmo

Julian Assange is a hero

By Christopher R Rice

Julian Assange is a hero. Who cares what the intelligence community thinks. They are obviously not that intelligent if they keep getting hacked.

If the intelligence community has a problem with Assange than the American people have a problem with our intelligence community. It means the Democrats are using the US intelligence community against the American people.

Americans trust Assange. The US Intelligence Agencies have been compromised and are corrupt agencies.

The information Assange leaked was of illegal operations of the government and their agencies, they call Assange a traitor for sharing the truth with the public and yet the people who’s crimes he exposed are all still walking free.

The UK lost, appealed, and – lost again. The UN instructed the UK and Sweden to take immediate steps to ensure Mr. Assange’s liberty, protection, and enjoyment of fundamental human rights. No steps have been taken, jeopardizing Mr. Assange’s life, health and physical integrity, and undermining the UN system of human rights protection.

Now, the United Nations has found that the United Kingdom’s request for review of this decision (filed on March 24) was inadmissible; the United Kingdom has now reached the end of the road in its attempt to overturn the ruling. As a member of the Security Council and the United Nations Human
Rights Council, the United Kingdom must respect its commitment to the United Nations, and release Mr. Assange immediately. Now, more than ever, moral leadership is required; maintaining Mr. Assange’s effective detention (which stands at six years as of 7 December, 2016) will only serve to green light future abuses against defenders of free speech and human rights.

Mr. Assange stated “Now that all appeals are exhausted I expect that the UK and Sweden will comply with their international obligations and set me free. It is an obvious and grotesque injustice to detain someone for six years who hasn’t even been charged with an offense.”

Regardless of how you feel about Assange, Wikileaks, or what they choose to release, everyone should be frightened by what appears to be an aggressive government action attempting to silence free speech and suppress important work for transparency and accountability.

The public deserves to know what is happening to Julian Assange. Right now. This affects all of us, and the future of our democracy.

Wikileaks is reporting that their founder Julian Assange’s internet connection “has been intentionally severed by a state party. We have activated the appropriate contingency plans.”

Assange has spent years in the embassy of Ecuador. Read Timeline to learn the key developments in the case. Journalist John Pilger’s article ’Julian Assange: The Untold Story Of An Epic Struggle For Justice’ is to date one of the best accounts of the miscarriages against Assange in this case. More.

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions appointed by President Donald Trump has issued arrest warrants for Julian Assange and WikiLeaks reporters

The former British ambassador to Cuba, Paul Webster Hare, wants the British police to invade the Ecuadorian embassy and ferret out Julian Assange – in the name of preserving diplomacy:

“The Ecuadorians have partially cut Assange’s access to the Internet – perhaps until after the election. But that will not solve the problem.

“Now the U.K. legal authorities have to decide whether the precedents Assange has set in handling “stolen” property while residing in a diplomatic mission is sufficient reason to rescind temporarily the inviolable status of Ecuador’s mission.”

In the Bizarro World we live in today, invading the inviolable territory of an embassy is “diplomacy pushing back,” as Ambassador Hare puts it. He goes on to burble: “It’s time for diplomacy to reassert itself in a world that seems increasingly willing to reject consensus-building in favor of stoking nationalist fervor.”

Whatever that means.

So what, exactly, is the rationale for invading what is legally Ecuadorian territory? According to Hare, WikiLeaks has been picking on the United States exclusively, and so it doesn’t really qualify as an advocate of transparency:

“To have an impact, transparency must be applied to every state – not used to bludgeon just one. If it wants to be valued as a window into duplicitous diplomacy, then WikiLeaks should probe the communications of all states.”

Where has the Ambassador been since 2008? As The New Yorker pointed out:

“In December, 2006, WikiLeaks posted its first document: a ‘secret decision,’ signed by Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys, a Somali rebel leader for the Islamic Courts Union, that had been culled from traffic passing through the Tor network to China. The document called for the execution of government officials by hiring ‘criminals’ as hit men.”

Assange followed that up by exposing how Kenyan leader Daniel arap Moi had looted his own country. That year, everything from illegal activities engaged in by Cayman Islands banks to the membership lists of the far-right British National Party found their way to the pages of WikiLeaks. The next year it released intercepted phone conversations that exposed the role played by Peruvian politicians who enriched themselves in the “Petrogate” scandal. The first news of a major nuclear accident at the Iranian nuclear facility at Natanz was revealed by WikiLeaks. That year also featured a number of other revelations involving governments other than that of the United States, but let’s move on to some of the major ones in subsequent years: in 2012, WikiLeaks published the Syria files, a compendium of millions of emails sent and received by Syrian government officials and state-owned companies: in 2015, WikiLeaks published the Saudi cables, consisting of thousands of emails, cables, and memoranda by Saudi government officials.

There’s plenty more, but you get the idea. The Ambassador has his head so far up his ass that he can’t think straight. That’s why he’s able to write the following:

“Assange’s actions, if not challenged, threaten core elements of diplomatic practice – like the right of diplomats to secure and unfettered communications – and could negatively impact how diplomacy is practiced around the world.”

What could “negatively impact how diplomacy is practiced around the world” more than the invasion of a country’s embassy by the host nation? Not even the Soviet Union and its Eastern European satellites undertook such an action: when Cardinal Josef Mindszenty was given asylum in the US embassy in Budapest after the crushing of the Hungarian Revolution in 1956, he stayed there for fifteen years, and the Communists didn’t dare touch him. That’s because even they recognized that to violate the sanctity of an embassy would have catastrophic consequences – but not Ambassador Hare. And he has the nerve to invoke the virtues of “diplomacy”!

Hare goes on to speculate that the Ecuadorian government, whose president, Rafael Correa, supports Hillary Clinton and despises Donald Trump, may soon tire of its troublesome guest: like the slimeball he is, Hare says this is “a delicious irony.” One can imagine him licking his lips as he wrote this.

On 3 July 2018, a judge in Ecuador ordered the arrest of Correa after he failed to appear in court during a trial surrounding the kidnapping of a political opponent. Correa, who lived in Belgium at the time, denied the allegations regarding the kidnapping.

And it’s true: Ecuador’s new president has lashed out at WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange even as he contends his government is working behind the scenes to help him out of the Ecuadorean embassy in London.

Lenin Moreno said in a televised interview that Assange had become “more than a nuisance” after he violated terms of his asylum by interfering in other countries’ political affairs.

Ecuador may very well kick Assange out into the street, where the British police have been waiting for years to grab him. The heroic founder of WikiLeaks has never been in greater danger. It’s been reported that Hillary said: “Can’t we just drone this guy?”

The great irony is Donald Trump was elected President but Assange is still not free. It’s hard to imagine Trump putting pressure on the Brits to make him leave the embassy after all, didn’t Trump declare “I love WikiLeaks!”?

We’re living in a Bizarro World, where up is down, right is left, a diplomat argues against the inviolability of embassies, and now after handing the white house to the Republicans they now seek Assange’s arrest.  Yes, it’s weird, but you know what? I kind of like it this way.

From CBS: Assange confirmed late last year that WikiLeaks was approached by a data firm working for Donald Trump’s presidential campaign during the 2016 election.

Assange said on Twitter that Cambridge Analytica had reached out to his group prior to November 2016.

He issued the tweet after news website The Daily Beast reported that Cambridge Analytica CEO Alexander Nix reached out to Assange during the presidential campaign about the possible release of 33,000 of Hillary Clinton’s missing emails. Those emails have never been publicly released.

Cambridge Analytica, which uses data mining to microtarget ads based on personality, claimed after the election that it had played a key role in Mr. Trump’s victory. The company was hired by Mr. Trump’s digital director Brad Parscale, although he told “60 Minutes” last month that he doesn’t believe their methods were so essential. According to Open Secrets, the Trump campaign paid Cambridge Analytica $5.9 million during the campaign.

The Trump campaign has long denied any connection with WikiLeaks, although Mr. Trump praised the entity during the campaign and even said he “loved” WikiLeaks.

U.S. Preps Arrest Warrant for Assange
One man has risked his own life for millions to be enlightened.

Whistleblowers are always needed to fend against corruption, what is needed now is a safe secure place for a whistleblower to go with their information without fear for their job, or worse fear for their (and/or their loved one’s) life.

Wikileaks record is reliable 100% of the time, why do we blame those who publish/expose the lies.

JFK was murdered in cold blood before our very eyes and the intelligent community who is responsible still has not released all of the information over 50 years later. The intelligence community failed to protect the president, failed to protect Americans on 9/11, failed to protect us during the Boston Marathon bombing, failed to protect anyone during the Las Vegas massacre, etc. So we owe them nothing.

FREE JULIAN:
WIKILEAKS:
The Top 100 Most Damaging Wikileaks (so far)
Search WikiLeaks
WikiLeaks: State Department cable “Detainees were raped”

Protests against imminent eviction of Julian Assange from Ecuador’s London embassy

Protests are being organized in London and internationally in response to credible sources claiming that the Ecuadorian government is on the verge of reneging on the political asylum it granted to WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange and handing him to British police.

Anonymous Scandinavia, a twitter account believed to be closely linked with WikiLeaks, has published a video announcing a “Condition Red” and stating that the “situation is critical.”

This follows a July 20 tweet by Russia Today editor Margarita Simonyan, which stated: “My sources say that Assange will be handed over to UK authorities in the coming weeks or even days…”

In a lengthy article published in the Intercept on July 21, journalist Glenn Greenwald reported that he also had a source “close to the Ecuadorian Foreign Ministry and the President’s office” who had confirmed that Julian Assange will be evicted from Ecuador’s London embassy “as early as this week.”

The protest in London will be taking place at 10am, Monday, July 23, at the Ecuadorian embassy. Protests in other cities have been called at US embassies and consulates, to take place the day after Assange was evicted. Rallies are organised so far in Melbourne, Australia; Wellington, New Zealand; Paris; and Los Angeles. Click here for details.

1.) The Underground Resistance calls on everyone everywhere to wear black.

2.) Do not go to work, or to school or to church.

3.) No shopping. Do not spend one dime. No buses, no trains and no planes for one day.

The Underground Resistance endorses all protest action against the persecution of Julian Assange and urges its readers to participate.

Ecuador’s President Lenín Moreno arrived in London on July 21 to deliver the keynote speech at the 2018 Global Disability Summit. Greenwald reported in the Intercept: “The concealed, actual purpose of the President’s trip is to meet with British officials to finalize an agreement under which Ecuador will withdraw its asylum protection of Julian Assange, in place since 2012, eject him from the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, and then hand over the WikiLeaks founder to British authorities.”

Assange was granted political asylum in its embassy by Ecuador in 2012 after his legal appeals against extradition to Sweden, to answer “questions” on manufactured allegations of sexual assault, were rejected by the British courts. Assange legitimately feared that he would be rapidly extradited from Sweden to the US to face charges over WikiLeaks’ publication of leaks that exposed American war crimes and diplomatic intrigues around the world.

If Assange leaves the embassy he will be imprisoned by Britain for breaching bail and almost certainly face an application to extradite him to the United States to stand trial on manufactured charges of espionage.

On the Moreno government’s orders, the Ecuadorian embassy in London has deprived Assange of all external communication, and all visitors apart from his lawyers, since March 28.

After six years of confinement due to the British threat of immediate arrest if he sets foot outside the small building, Assange’s health has been seriously compromised. The deprivation of communication is a vindictive attempt to add immense psychological pressure on him to leave the embassy, as well as to silence him while lurid accusations permeate the American and international media that WikiLeaks was part of a nefarious Russian conspiracy to “interfere” in the 2016 US presidential election.

Ahead of Moreno’s visit to London, his national secretary of political management, Paul Granda, asserted on July 19 that “there is no specific meeting planned on Assange.” The same day, acting Ecuadorian foreign minister, Andres Teran, claimed that Moreno’s government is “not in talks with the United States” over the WikiLeaks editor.

These statements have no credibility. All evidence, reinforced by the Intercept report, points to the opposite conclusion: A conspiracy is well advanced, involving the US, British, Ecuadorian and Australian governments, to have Assange hauled before a show trial in the US.

The American intelligence agencies are determined to prosecute Assange as a “spy.” The campaign to arrest him was escalated to a “priority” in April 2017, after WikiLeaks began publishing the “Vault 7” leaks that revealed how the CIA had developed malware to hack phones, PCs, servers, smart televisions and vehicle computer systems in every part of the world.

Moreno’s government has betrayed Assange as part of its venal attempts, on behalf of the Ecuadorian business elite, to restore economic and political relations with Washington. The London embassy cut off Assange’s communications just one day after top-level meetings in Ecuador with representatives of US Southern Command on re-establishing military cooperation.

Moreno will speak with leading figures in the Conservative government of Prime Minister Theresa May over the coming days.

The UK-Ecuadorian talks will take place amid total hysteria in the American political and media establishment, following Trump’s meeting with Vladimir Putin in Helsinki this week, over purported Russian “meddling” and “interference.”

At the center of the allegations is the July 2016 publication by WikiLeaks of a trove of emails sent by the Democratic National Committee (DNC), revealing that ostensibly impartial party officials conspired to undermine Bernie Sanders’ campaign against Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Party primaries.

The information outraged millions of Sanders’ supporters, especially young people who had voted for the Vermont senator due to his claims to be a “democratic socialist” and to oppose the “billionaires.” Top DNC officials were forced to resign in disgrace for their attempt to manipulate and rig the primaries for Clinton’s benefit.

History, however, has since been rewritten by the Democratic Party, the American media and the US intelligence agencies. The DNC leaks were instead transformed into purported “evidence” of a Russian-orchestrated attempt to manipulate the 2016 presidential election in favor of Donald Trump. WikiLeaks and Assange were accused of being accomplices of the Putin regime.

On January 6, 2017, the US Office of National Intelligence alleged: “We assess with high confidence that the GRU [Russian General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate] relayed material it acquired from the DNC and senior Democratic officials to WikiLeaks. Moscow most likely chose WikiLeaks because of its self-proclaimed reputation for authenticity.”

Claims of Russian “fake news” and “meddling” also have been used to justify the sweeping and ongoing campaign to censor oppositional publications on the Internet, including WikiLeaks. At the same time, the assertions of Russian “interference” have been used to stoke a frenzy of demands in the American establishment for a stepped-up economic and military confrontation with Russia, threatening to trigger war between nuclear-armed states.

The allegation that Assange is a “Russian agent” is crucial to both the assault on freedom of speech and democratic rights, and to the preparations for war.

A media organization cannot be prosecuted for publishing leaks. So, in November 2010, Vice President Joe Biden labelled Assange a “high-tech terrorist.” In April 2017, CIA director Mike Pompeo, now secretary of state, branded WikiLeaks a “non-state hostile intelligence agency.”

If Assange were charged as a Russian spy, it would establish a far-reaching precedent. International media organizations and journalists that publish leaked information could be pursued and prosecuted without recourse to any constitutional and legal protections of freedom of speech.

The slander of Assange as a Russian tool serves definite ideological purposes. It has been seized upon internationally by the ex-liberal and pseudo-left milieu in the media and political establishment to align with US imperialism, the Democratic Party and the American intelligence agencies and justify their refusal to defend WikiLeaks and democratic rights.

The truth is that, regardless of the source, WikiLeaks published information that was both newsworthy and further clarified people as to the corrupt, militarist and big business character of the Democratic Party and its candidate Clinton. Any genuine media organization that received such leaks would have published them.

The immense danger Assange faces was underscored on July 20 by comments made during a media conference held by UK Foreign Affairs Secretary Jeremy Hunt and Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, who was in Britain for annual ministerial talks.

Hunt gloated: “Serious charges have been laid against him [Assange] and we want him to face justice for those charges but we are a country of due process. At any time he wants to, he is free to walk out on to the streets of Knightsbridge and the British police will have a warm welcome for him.”

Bishop exuded the utter contempt of successive Australian governments for the rights of an Australian citizen and journalist being persecuted by the US. She indifferently responded to Hunt’s threats, effectively washing her government’s hands of Assange’s fate. She told the media: “We understand there are still matters where Mr Assange is subject to British legal proceedings so therefore that would be a matter of British law enforcement authorities and agencies.”

In fact, the only “charges” that Assange faces in Britain arise from breaching bail when he sought asylum, a necessary step to avoid the sinister warrant to extradite him to Sweden.

No charges were ever laid by Swedish prosecutors, who finally agreed to question him in London in December 2016. Sweden abandoned the bogus investigation in April 2017, yet the British authorities and courts refused to drop the now-redundant alleged bail offenses.

The only “serious charges” against Assange are likely to be espionage-related charges in the United States, which could result in life imprisonment or even the death penalty.

The ongoing motive behind the persecution of Assange is to terrorize and intimidate whistleblowers and independent media organizations into remaining silent on imperialist war crimes and intrigues, corporate abuses and corruption, and US-led war preparations.

All defenders of media freedom and democratic rights must step up the fight to demand the unconditional right of Julian Assange to leave the London embassy and the UK unhindered and return to Australia, if he chooses to do so, with a guarantee against extradition to the US.

The author also recommends:

The Campaign to Free Julian Assange