Dec. 18: DOJ's Threat To WikiLeaks, Free Press

Written by Andrew Kreig
Published on December 19, 2010

Editor's Note: Below is a selection of significant blogs and news articles on legal reform and related political, security and media dimensions. The articles contain a sample of news, with the full article viewable by clicking the link.

Dec. 18
Salon/Unclaimed Territory, Joe Biden v. Joe Biden on WikiLeaks, Glenn Greenwald, Dec. 18, 2010.

It's really not an overstatement to say that WikiLeaks and Julian Assange are the new Iraqi WMDs because the government and establishment media are jointly manufacturing and disseminating an endless stream of fear-mongering falsehoods designed to depict them as scary villains threatening the security of The American People and who must therefore be stopped at any cost.

New York Times, Swedish Police Report Details Case Against Assange, John F. Burns and Ravi Somaiya, Dec. 18, 2010.
Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks who was released from a British jail late last week, is facing a new challenge: the leak of a 68-page confidential Swedish police report that sheds new light on the allegations of sexual misconduct that led to Mr. Assange’s legal troubles.

Dec. 17
OpEd News, WikiLeaks Hearing on the Hill: Issues Raised by Desires to Prosecute Assange & WikiLeaks, Kevin Gosztola, Dec. 17, 2010.

For over three hours on December 16th, the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on legal and constitutional issues raised by WikiLeaks. The hearing focused on the Espionage Act and whether the government could prosecute Julian Assange and others affiliated with the organization or not. The hearing also focused on the limits of the law and how the U.S. could adjust the classification process to guard itself from future "attacks" from WikiLeaks.

The seven-person panel included: Abbe D. Lowell, a partner with McDermott Will & Emery LLP in Washington, D.C.; Kenneth L. Wainstein, a partner with O'Melveny & Myers LLP in Washington, D.C.; Geoffrey R. Stone, a professor and Former Dean of the University of Chicago Law School; Gabriel Schoenfeld, Ph.D., a Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute, Thomas S. Blanton, Director of the National Security Archive at George Washington University, Stephen I. Vladeck, a Professor of Law at American University Washington College Law; and Ralph Nader, a legal advocate and author.

Truthout, Bush Sr., James Baker Instrumental in Getting Nigeria to Drop Bribery Charges Against Cheney, Jason Leopold, Dec. 17, 2010.

Former President George H.W. Bush and ex-Secretary of State James Baker were part of a negotiating team that convinced Nigerian government officials to drop bribery charges against Dick Cheney and Halliburton, the oil services firm he led prior to becoming vice president.

Huffington Post, Tax Cut Compromise Leaves Ardent Obama Supporters Disillusioned, Jason Linkins, Dec. 17, 2010.

Huffington Post, Dear Government of Sweden, Michael Moore, Dec. 17, 2010.

Actually, many see right through you. They know what these "non-charge charges" are really about. And they know that you are cynically and disgustingly using the real and everyday threat that exists against women everywhere to help further the American government's interest in silencing the work of WikiLeaks.

OpEd News, Journalists Are All Julian Assange, Robert Parry, Dec. 17, 2010.

By bringing a case against Mr. Assange as a conspirator to Private Manning's leak, the government would not have to confront awkward questions about why it is not also prosecuting traditional news organizations or investigative journalists who also disclose information the government says should be kept secret -- including The New York Times, which also published some documents originally obtained by WikiLeaks.

In other words, the Obama administration appears to be singling out Assange as an outlier in the journalistic community who is already regarded as something of a pariah. In that way, mainstream media personalities can be invited to join in his persecution without thinking that they might be next. Though American journalists may understandably want to find some protective cover by pretending that Julian Assange is not like us, the reality is " whether we like it or not " we are all Julian Assange.

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