Contributed by Adam Carlton
The new attack launched by the new CIA Director (13 April 2017) against Julian Assange and its founder WikiLeaks is not only unjust, it is a low political act, primarily designed to sidetrack attention from the real politics of what is going on in the United States. Another incentive is to get rid of a thorn in the side of the Washington political élite.
These people and their financial backers do not want to admit they are the problem and that growing numbers of Americans are turning on them. This is the reason why there Donald Trump is now president. Not that huge numbers think he’s good. Too many didn’t have the stomach for Hilary Clinton. It is also the reason why so many turned to Bernie Sanders, who offered something different.
At centre stage is the Democrat National Committee (DNC) that plotted against Sanders and still refuses to admit why its party is in so much trouble. After the election, everything was blamed on the Russians. It’s a farce that is wearing rather thin.
The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is coming out looking like a version of Keystone Cops. Director Mike Pompeo has come out, fists swinging, to blame Assange and WikiLeaks as a major threat to democracy, accusing them of acting as an intelligence service, hosted by Russia. Where is the evidence? It looks rather too much like Joe McCarthy’s 1950’s witch hunt, where victims found themselves accused without evidence, of being communist agents, hosted by Russia. No evidence was necessary. In the end, McCarthy and his show trials were exposed for what they were and he went into oblivion.
There was something of a replication of McCarthyism in Australia and there are signs that the new McCarthyism is already finding some purchase. Assange is an Australian and the record of Australian governments over the extraordinary lengths that foreign governments used to try and capture him, for obviously political reasons, have been abysmal. It took a Latin American government to do what the Australian government should have done.
Have Julian Assange and WikiLeaks harmed us by releasing documents that exposed wrongdoing by politicians and party official, the lack of transparency of governments and the scale of corporate tax dodging?
Mike Pompeo also accuses WikiLeaks of releasing documents, allegedly hacked DNC information provided by the Russians. Again, no evidence of the Russian connection has been presented. Even if the Russians had provided this information, it could only be effective, if it uncovers some wrongdoing. Is it wrong to expose wrongdoing?
Most disturbing is what can only be described as an implied warning for supporters of Assange and WikiLeaks. This is dangerous in the new political twist in, where Donald Trump’s best Washington prop, now seems to be a large portion of the Democrat leadership. The by-partisanship extends to attacking the right to speak.
The US connection promises to bring this attack to Australia. It will add to the already imposed by the Coalition government, such as the restrictions put on journalists, mega data collection more spying on citizens in general, measures imported from the United States. It is high time to apply some political independence.
Julian Assange and WikiLeaks have been doing us all a great favour, by letting us know what is going on and exposing the lies told by those who seek to manipulate us. We have a duty to rise to their defense. As Australians, our obligation is to insist that the Australian government shows some guts and stands up for justice, assists an Australian in trouble overseas and moves away from all the way with the USA, no matter what.
Video from The Sydney Morning Herald