Secret Grand Jury pressuring Chelsea Manning in indictment of Julian Assange

StarryPlough01

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New York Times

Assange Indicted Under Espionage Act, Raising First Amendment Issues



By Charlie Savage

Notably, The New York Times, among many other news organizations, obtained precisely the same archives of documents from WikiLeaks, without authorization from the government — the act that most of the charges addressed. While The Times did take steps to withhold the names of informants in the subset of the files it published, it is not clear how that is legally different from publishing other classified information.

Barry J. Pollack, a lawyer for Mr. Assange, said his client was being charged with a crime “for encouraging sources to provide him truthful information and for publishing that information.” That dramatic step, he said, removed the “fig leaf” that the case about his client was only about hacking.

“These unprecedented charges demonstrate the gravity of the threat the criminal prosecution of Julian Assange poses to all journalists in their endeavor to inform the public about actions that have been taken by the U.S. government,” he said.






Julian Assange: US charges WikiLeaks founder with violating Espionage Act – as it happened

Eighteen-count DoJ indictment alleges Assange, who was arrested last month in London, ‘risked serious harm’ to America
 


StarryPlough01

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Informative article here


On the face of it this indictment covers a lot of practices that are standard to investigative journalism.

Updated May 24, 2019 — 10.51 am first published at 9.47am


By Nick Miller


London: Finally here are the charges Julian Assange has been expecting, predicting, and fearing for a long time.

….

It may be that, by bringing them now, they are trying to bolster their case to be first in the queue when arguing for priority over Swedish prosecutors, who want to extradite Assange there to face a rape allegation.

….

Espionage will be a much harder case for prosecutors to win than hacking.

Under the terms of the law, they must show Assange had the “intent or reason to believe that the [leaked] information is to be used to the injury of the United States, or to the advantage of any foreign nation”.



Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart wrote:


“In the absence of the governmental checks and balances present in other areas of our national life, the only effective restraint upon executive policy and power in the areas of national defence and international affairs may lie in an enlightened citizenry”.
 

StarryPlough01

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The Conversation

May 25, 2019


Author Holly Cullen
Adjunct professor, University of Western Australia



Assange’s legal team are likely to argue that extradition to the US would constitute a violation of Assange’s right to freedom of expression under international law. If the extradition occurs, it’s likely they would seek to have the charges thrown out by American courts as unconstitutional.


Australian government support for its nationals caught up in criminal proceedings overseas is largely negotiated out of the public eye. Nonetheless, there have been cases, such as the recent campaign to bring Hakeem al-Araibi back to Australia from Thailand, where the government was a public advocate.


Assange’s case is certainly exceptional, and the human rights concerns over US extradition could justify exceptional intervention.
 

StarryPlough01

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'National security journalism just became a national security threat'



by Zack Whittaker 18 hours ago



Assange [is] first person to be charged for publishing classified information under the Espionage Act, a law that predates the Great Depression by an entire decade, and used to prosecute foreign spies and government whistleblowers.

Jack Goldsmith, Harvard Law School professor and former government lawyer, in a post on Lawfare:


“This is exactly what national security reporters and their news publications often ask government officials or contractors to do, ….”



It's chilling ^^^



May 25, 2019, 4:24 AM GMT+8


By Steve Vladeck, professor at the University of Texas School of Law


Espionage Act of 1917 was enacted during WWI before Supreme Court's modern interpretation of First Amendment of US Constitution ~


… [Espionage Act] controversially made it a crime not only to spy on this country and steal national security secrets, but even simply to receive classified national security information without authorization. The law does not require that an offender intend to harm the United States; it requires only that the defendant know or have “reason to believe” that the wrongfully obtained or disclosed “national defense information” is going to be used to hurt the United States, or help a foreign nation.



 

StarryPlough01

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Julian Assange misses scheduled court session, citing health problems




WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has missed a brief extradition hearing, apparently due to health problems.

Scheduled to appear at the session from prison via video link on Thursday, Assange's lawyer Gareth Peirce said the Australian was "in fact far from well".

….

WikiLeaks said it had grave concerns about Assange's health and that he had been moved to a health ward at the high-security prison.

"During the seven weeks in Belmarsh his health has continued to deteriorate and he has dramatically lost weight," it added in a statement.

"The decision of prison authorities to move him to the health ward speaks for itself."

The next hearing on the extradition request was set for June 12.
 

StarryPlough01

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Big Brother...

Whistleblower Edward Snowden endorsed Signal



Bryan Wall: What’s A Little Private Messaging Between Friends?

Bryan Wall at 1:30 pm July 1, 2019





Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) ~~~


"It wrote that the online regulator should be able to issue Harmful Online Content notices (HOC) to “both ‘open’ online services (e.g. social media platforms) and ‘encrypted’ online services (e.g. private messaging services)”.​
"It further argues that this targeting of encrypted private messaging services — presumably they mean the likes of WhatsApp and Signal — is “desirable to ‘future proof’ them and to effectively tackle certain online harms”.​
"What’s more, it says that takedown notices can be issued by the regulator “on receipt of requests from Irish residents or someone legitimately acting on an Irish resident’s behalf”. ....​


"Essentially, the BAI wants to regulate all online content, including private messaging services, and sanction providers if they do not adhere to the online HOC Code.​


Starry:

Encryption is essential to online privacy, and privacy in one's communications and own personal effects* is a fundamental human right.

For example

*Your diary is confidential and personal correspondence.

You have a right to have a personal confidential conversation with someone. They would need reasonable grounds based on objective evidence to suspect that a private conversation was in effect a criminal conspiracy.

It's not about hate speech, it's about totalitarian snooping. They (BAI) might make it illegal to install Signal.
 


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