Obama waged war more aggressively against them than all previous US presidents combined. Assange and Bradley Manning are best known. Anyone exposing dirty secrets officials want suppressed is vulnerable.
The message delivered is we know who and where you are or will find out. We'll throw you in gulag hell, keep you there, or kill you. Dare challenge their resolve and find out they're not kidding.
America twists legal meanings to serve its interests. Bogus charges facilitate hanging innocent victims out to dry. Headlines portray Assange as public enemy number one. For months, he hasn't had a moment's peace.
According to declassified Air Force counterintelligence documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), he and military personnel who contact WikiLeaks or its supporters may be declared "enemies of the state."
The charge carries a possible death sentence if convicted. Article 104 of the US Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) states:
"Any person who".aids, or attempts to aid, the enemy" in any way, "with proper authority, knowingly harbors or protects or gives intelligence to or communicates or corresponds with or holds any intercourse with the enemy, either directly or indirectly, shall suffer death or such other punishment as a court-martial or military commission may direct."
On September 27, Michael Ratner, Center for Constitutional Rights president emeritus and Assange's legal adviser, was interviewed on Democracy Now .
He said FOIA obtained information revealed that a UK-based US analyst, "a soldier who had top security clearance, (became) sympathetic with Bradley Manning and WikiLeaks."- Advertisement -
An investigation followed under UCMJ Article 104. She met with friends of Assange. From "the face of the documents, it appears that WikiLeaks and Julian Assange are looked at as the enemy."
If so, "it has serious consequences. We all know what you can do with an enemy. You can drone him. You can capture him. You can put him in a cell forever."
"So it's very, very serious. That's one possibility, or possibly very likely, from reading these documents, (it appears) that WikiLeaks is an enemy and Julian Assange is an enemy."
"The other possibility is that WikiLeaks is the means by which this military analyst is communicating with the enemy. She's turning over documents."
"She never did, but she's allegedly possibly going to turn over documents to WikiLeaks, which then, by doing that, she's communicating with the enemy, because WikiLeaks is going to publish them, and al-Qaeda or somebody who the US has already designated an enemy is going to read them."- Advertisement -
Either possibility is terrible for Assange, WikiLeaks, and journalists.
"It's terrible because if WikiLeaks is an enemy--I've already said how serious that would be if Julian Assange and WikiLeaks are an enemy--if they're the means of communicating with the enemy, they could still be charged--WikiLeaks could be charged--with aiding the enemy, could be arrested under the National Defense Authorization Act, could be kept at GuantÃ¡namo, etc."