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ADX Florence, a supermax prison in Colorado (Bureau of Prisons)

The mass incarceration system in the United States is cruel and inhumane, and as a result, the U.S. government had their extradition request against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange denied by a British district judge.

As Judge Vanessa Baraitser declared [PDF], “The detention conditions in which Mr. Assange is likely to be held are relevant to Mr. Assange’s risk of suicide.”

She additionally found there was “a real risk” that Assange would be subject to “restrict special administrative measures” or SAMs if confined in a U.S. prison.

Even more specifically, Baraitser determined Assange would be designated to ADX Florence in Colorado, a supermax facility notorious for its conditions and how their effects on mentally ill prisoners. …


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Photo: Marcos Oliveira/Agência Senado (Source)

Journalist Glenn Greenwald, a co-founder of The Intercept, accused editors at the media organization of censorship and resigned. It involved a story he drafted on Joe Biden and allegations of corruption stemming from his son’s laptop that was purportedly given to the New York Post.

He shared a piece about ending his involvement, announced he was launching a newsletter at Substack, posted the article he claimed was censored, and later posted emails reflecting the sharp disagreement with Intercept editors.

What quickly became the focus was a statement he made about a clause in his contract that prohibited the editing of his articles unless it involved “complex original reporting” or there was a “possibility of legal liability.” …


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Photo of Daniel Ellsberg by Christopher Michel

Opponents of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange often hold up Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg as an example of someone who was responsible for a good leak. They insist WikiLeaks is not like the Pentagon Papers because supposedly Assange was reckless with sensitive documents.

On the seventh day of an extradition trial against Assange, Ellsberg dismantled this false narrative and outlined for a British magistrate court why Assange would not receive a fair trial in the United States.

Assange is accused of 17 counts of violating the Espionage Act and one count of conspiracy to commit a computer crime that, as alleged in the indictment, is written like an Espionage Act offense. …


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The trial portion of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s extradition hearing will unfold from September 7 until at least September 24.

Ahead of the extradition hearing, Shadowproof managing editor Kevin Gosztola interviewed Barry Pollack, who is Assange’s lawyer in the United States.

In the interview, Pollack outlines why the U.S. government’s position in the case is a “very dangerous one.” He describes several aspects that would likely lead one to believe Assange would be denied justice if extradited to the U.S. for a trial and what makes this hearing September so crucial for Assange’s legal team.

***

The following is a transcript of the interview with Barry Pollack, who is WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s lawyer in the United States. It was edited for clarity in a few sections.


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Screen shot from Joe Biden’s acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention (Source)

*Note: This is a message for people the Democratic Party does not represent and has not represented for several decades.

The Democratic Party and Joe Biden’s presidential campaign have a plan to beat President Donald Trump in 2020 that does not rely on winning progressive and left-wing voters.

It has offered voters on the left stale bread crumbs for their support and exploited their fear of a second Trump term to hold them captive. Let them try to win without us.

During the 2020 Democratic National Convention, this strategy was on full display. Disgruntled Republicans were welcomed with open arms, including individuals who have fought against 99 percent of Americans throughout their careers. …


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The bipartisan freakout over the mere possibility that President Donald Trump might pardon Edward Snowden is a reflection of the deep-seated prejudice that exists against the National Security Agency whistleblower.

Prejudice formed among elites immediately after Snowden revealed he was behind disclosures that exposed the United States’ global mass surveillance programs, which violated people’s privacy both domestically and abroad. It intensified as he was trapped in a Moscow airport after the State Department revoked his passport and was forced to seek asylum from Russia.

Yet, with Trump, the hostility has grown even more feverish because — although there is no proof whatsoever — this coalition of neoliberals and neoconservatives sees the hand of Russia President Vladimir Putin behind the sudden interest in Snowden’s case. …


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Image from Anarchimedia

On July 30, 2013, United States Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning was convicted of violating the Espionage Act and various other offenses.

It was National Whistleblower Appreciation Day, and though she was not found guilty of “aiding the enemy,” the verdict in her trial crystallized a contradiction among the political establishment. Officials profess a commitment to whistleblowers except when they blow the whistle on abuse, fraud, or corruption that they have a vested interest in defending.

The resolution for this year’s National Whistleblower Appreciation Day, like prior resolutions, stipulates that the United States will encourage whistleblowing but only according to federal law and only if it protects classified information (including “sources and methods of detection of classified information”) and also only if the whistleblowing involves “honest and good faith reporting of misconduct, fraud, misdemeanors, and other crimes to the appropriate authority at the earliest time possible.” …


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Jennifer Perelman (Facebook)

Jen Perelman has had the same representative in the United States Congress for nearly 16 years — Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a Democrat in Florida’s 23rd congressional district. Now, Perelman is mounting a primary challenge against Wasserman Schultz.

Primary day is August 18. She has until July 20 to convince independents in the district to switch their registration to Democrat to vote for her.

Wasserman Schultz is a well-known corporate Democrat, who chaired the Democratic National Committee until she was forced to resign in 2016 after WikiLeaks published emails that exposed the DNC helped rig the presidential primary to favor Hillary Clinton. …


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Image is from the State Department’s Share America information platform and in the public domain. (Source)

The United States government expanded their indictment against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to criminalize the assistance WikiLeaks provided to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden when staff helped him leave Hong Kong.

Sarah Harrison, who was a section editor for WikiLeaks, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, a former spokesperson, and Jacob Appelbaum, a digital activist who represented WikiLeaks at conferences, are targeted as “co-conspirators” in the indictment [PDF], though neither have been charged with offenses.

No charges were added, however, it significantly expands the conspiracy to commit computer intrusion charge and accuses Assange of conspiring with “hackers” affiliated with “Anonymous,” “LulzSec,” “AntiSec,” and “Gnosis.”

The computer crime charge is not limited to March 2010 anymore. It covers conduct that allegedly occurred between 2009 and 2015. …


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Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on June 8, 2020 as “Justice In Policing Act” was unveiled (Screen shot from live stream of the press conference)

Proposals for police reform by Democrats are distressingly similar to prior proposals that have done nothing to fundamentally change policing. In fact, the vast majority of provisions in legislation introduced in Congress were recommended by a task force convened by President Barack Obama five years ago.

George Floyd was murdered by four Minneapolis police officers on May 25. Video showed Derek Chauvin, Tou Thao, J. Alexander Kueng, and Thomas Lane as Floyd repeatedly told them, “I can’t breathe.” The killing sparked more than ten days of intense rebellion.

Protesters also reacted to the death of Breonna Taylor, who was killed by Louisville police on March 13 in a “no-knock” drug raid carried out against the wrong home. The narcotics officers that raided her home were not in uniform, and individuals inside the home thought criminals were burglarizing their residence so they fired their weapons at police. …

About

Kevin Gosztola

Journalist. Writes about politics. Managing editor of Shadowproof.com. Twitter: @kgosztola

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