Hey Chris, in your discussion over Julian Assange with Dick Smith I’m surprised that neither of you raised the US Supreme Court ruling in favour of the New York Times over the Pentagon Papers? Daniel Ellsberg was the leaker and the New York Times the publisher.
With the moves by the United States to extradite Julian Assange from Britain to the US, the question that should be raised is, did Assange leak or did he publish?
It’s an important and crucial distinction and point of difference.
The leak of the Pentagon Papers by Daniel Ellsberg in 1971 demonstrated that the Johnson administration had “systematically lied” about the Vietnam war.
The papers were then published by the New York Times, and from there ended up in the Supreme Court. The SCOTUS found, 6-3 in favour of the New York Times as a publisher, had a right to publish and was justified in doing so under the First Amendment’s protection of freedom of speech. (the press)
Assange didn’t hack and didn’t leak. That was the work of Chelsea Manning.
Assange’s role was that of recipient and publisher, just like the NY Times. Precedent being what it is, that same benefit attached to the NYTimes decision should be afforded to Assange.
But that’s not all this is about. Assange was also the recipient of another leak and that was the very darkest secrets and the inner workings of the Democrat Party and that’s an even greater crime.