Julian Assange: Enemy of the State or Protected Whistleblower?
Analysis posted below the article is the opinion of Chadwick H. Fairbanks III.
Julian Assange was arrested today in London following the suspicious revocation of his political asylum from the Ecuadorian Government. The current president of Ecuador is embroiled in a corruption scandal that WIkileaks is a part of which could explain the asylum revocation as possible whistleblower retaliation. Nevertheless, Julian Assange is facing extradition to the United States for conspiracy to hack a DOD computer in 2010. Here is a copy of the 2018 indictment.
Julian Assange had worked with Army intelligence analyst, Bradley Manning, in 2010 regarding vasts volumes of classified information that Manning had downloaded and passed onto Assange who then published it online. What’s interesting to note is that Assange isn’t being indicted for possession or dissemination of classified USG documents, but for conspiring with Manning to hack a DOD computer. Why not you say? Well, that’s a good question.
As a former military intelligence professional and civilian intelligence contractor, I’m very familiar with handling classified information as well as accessing sensitive sites. Furthermore, one of my functions as a contractor was to rapidly synthesize raw data into a finished intelligence product that was forwarded to battlefield commanders in response to their requests for aiding in capture or kill raids on HVT’s. Now, the National Security Agency Classification Guide Policy Manual 1-52, Chapter 1, Section 6, clearly states that:
In no case shall information be classified, continue to be maintained as classified, or fail to be declassified in order to: conceal violations of law, inefficiency, or administrative error; prevent embarrassment to a person, organization, or agency; restrain competition; prevent or delay the release of information that does not require protection in the interest of national security.
While not all of the information downloaded by Manning and released by Assange was evidence of criminal wrongdoing on behalf of the government, some of it was. So now what? The Uniform Code of Military Justice requires soldiers, who swear oaths to defend the U.S. Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic, to disobey illegal orders regardless of where those orders originate from which has led to some high-profile cases. In fact, failing to disobey illegal orders is actual a military crime with the precedent being set by the Nuremberg Trials. But what are uniformed personnel supposed to do when the illegal orders of the Deep State machinations are such an ingrained facet of the everyday federal intelligence bureaucracy that doing your job is technically unconstitutional and illegal, but refusing to do it is also illegal, unpatriotic, and insubordinate? When the amount of illegal spying and illegal classification is endemic to the entire intelligence apparatus, what is one professional supposed to do?
I would argue that you SHOULD NOT do what Bradley Manning did, but you should do what Thomas Drake and William Binney did - both of them famous NSA whistleblowers. Now, don’t think that because those men utilized proper channels that they were well received. Both the Bush and Obama Administrations tried to have Drake and Binney “crucified” for daring to challenge the Deep State. However, because they followed the law and told the truth, they were exonerated in court even though the Justice Department tried their hardest to destroy these Patriots.
Now, as a journalist, as Julian Assange purports to be, doesn’t the truth and ethics of journalism shield him from retaliatory prosecution from criminal governments seeking to silence those who expose them? Did not Wikileaks completely expose the Deep State operations of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama against the 2016 Donald Trump campaign as well as the myriad of their other crimes. Are they, along with Rosenstein, Mueller, Strzok, McGabe, and a whole host of other senior level officials, guilty of worse wrongdoing than Assange? Should Assange go free? Should President Donald Trump pardon Julian Assange?
ANALYSIS: Julian Assange is no more a criminal than Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Rod Rosenstein, Andrew McGabe, Peter Strzok, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, Robert Mueller, et al and so the Justice Department really needs to prioritize an order of precedence for prosecution. Julian Assange is and was not a threat to national security, but he was a threat to the Deep State. It’s my opinion that those who are sympathetic to the Deep State are the ones that want Julian Assange prosecuted.