Last Friday, a clerical error revealed a sealed indictment filed against Julian Assange in Virginia’s Eastern District Court, the venue preferred by the US Federal Government to try cyber crimes and dissident spies, like Thomas Drake and John Kiriakou, who each received draconian sentences there.
The surprise revelation fueled rumors that the Ecuadorian government would soon hand him over to the UK to be extradited to the US.
A meeting yesterday at the State Department between Ecuador’s Foreign Minister José Amores with Secretary Mike Pompeo led Assange’s lawyer, Hanna Jonasson to speculate that the case may be unsealed today.
While serving as Director of the CIA, Pompeo had vowed to “take down” WikiLeaks. A $500 million loan made by the US to Ecuador earlier this year was done on the condition that they would hand over Assange.
The case is expected to construct Assange as an “Enemy of the State” when technically, he is a publisher of documents, which is not a crime. The prosecution of Assange will represent a violation of his First Amendment Rights and set a horrible precedent for journalism and whistle blowing.
The first eleven minutes of this presentation by Qatari state-funded broadcaster, Al Jazeera is about as even-handed of a portrayal of WikiLeaks’ current state of affairs as is permissable by a major news outlet in our increasingly gagged era.
Mouth-foaming “Russia Gate” proponent, Eric Alterman from The Nation holds forth amid the saner pronouncements of Glenn Greenwald from The Intercept.