Dear Assange fanatics,
I do not dispute that Wikileaks in its early days was providing a valuable service. However, when Wikileaks became synonymous with Julian Assange to the point where the man became bigger than the project and seemingly mostly working, unintentionally or otherwise, for the Russians since around 2010, the project lost all credibility with people like myself.
The allegation is that Assange moved from being a passive recipient of Government documents to being an active seeker of them. The former is defensible, citing the First Amendment of the US Constitution. The latter falls outside of the First Amendment.
Lawyers who specialise in advising reputable media outlets like CNN, who have been working recently with Bellingcat on a story about an FSB hit squad, have said they would strongly advise clients against handling information gained in the way it has been alleged Assange did.
I hope Assange has his day in court and tells all.
Tells not only of any connections he may have had with Donald Trump’s 2016 Presidential Campaign, but also of any help that he may have provided to that campaign.
Tells of his meeting with Nigel Farage whilst ‘imprisoned’ in the Ecuadorian Embassy.
I hope Assange reveals not only the breadth, but the depth of any work he may have done for Putin.
Putin works assiduously to undermine Western Alliances, like NATO and the EU.
If he does speak of connections embarrassing to men of influence and power then Assange will be safer living in a US military stockade for the rest of his life than as a free man, ever alert for bulky men carrying umbrellas on a hot, sunny day and mindful of staying well away from the edges of Tube station platforms until the train has stopped in the station.
Putin’s Cold War Mark Two has no rules as the Hungarian Prime Minister observed a little while ago.
If Putin will send men to murder a defector after he had long ceased to be of value to Western intelligence services then no one may expect to escape his wrath, if he or she blabs.
And if they do not blab in court, there is no guarantee they will not seek to cut a deal for a sizeable sum of money with a media outlet or two and probably a publisher as well.
Some life stories make more interesting reading than others, say as a serialised autobiography in a broadsheet.
Incidentally, I gather the intention was for Assange to imprison himself not in the Ecuadorian Embassy, but in the London Embassy of the Russian Government.
Here Endeth the Lesson.