Another worthy comparison is with the legendary Daniel Ellsberg, leaker of the Pentagon Papers in 1971, who like Assange, gave himself up and faced the music, which turned out to be sweet. The judge dismissed all charges against him in 1973 and the New York Times pompously applauded him in 1996, saying that the papers demonstrated "that the Johnson Administration had systematically lied" about "a subject of transcendent national interest and significance."
Ellsberg and Assange, following the advice of Woodrow Wilson, are heroes. Pollard, truly a villain, is worshiped today in Israel, where his 9000th day in prison last year was commemorated with a light show on the walls of the old city of Jerusalem. Last month 39 Congressmen petitioned US President - Barack Obama to pardon him. Last summer, Netanyahu had the gall to offer to hold off a few more months on settlements if Obama freed him.
Will Assange suffer a fate like Pollard or Ellsberg? The US military machine was in disarray in 1971 and Ellsberg gave it a brave shove and helped bring the troops home. But this is 2010. The open calls to free Pollard are treated as a matter of fact. While the Hillaries and Sarahs are calling to assassinate Assange for doing something noble, their like are calling to free a traitor who was responsible for betraying his country and causing untold deaths of US officials.
The sides are lining up, much like Bush predicted in 2001 with his "You are with us or against us." A brave Aussie, a principled French judge, an American libertarian congressman, a youthful computer nerd -- the enemies of empire come in all shapes and sizes.
1 | 2