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Justice for Julian Assange

One of the best ways to achieve justice is to expose injustice.

-Julian Assange

Julian Assange is an American hero who used his talents as a journalist to expose government corruption at a level we’ve never seen before. A recent British appeals court decision determined that the founder of WikiLeaks can be flown to the United States to faces charges against him regarding the disclosure of classified information. Assange is accused of violating the Espionage Act, enacted during World War I.


The appeals courts overruled a lower court ruling that blocked Assange’s extradition out of fear that he would commit suicide. His lawyers are planning to appeal the most recent decision to the British Supreme Court, a process that could take months, if not longer. The judges that heard his case did not take into consideration whether or not Assange’s prosecution violates free press requirements. Furthermore, the rulings didn’t address that it was reported in September that the CIA developed plans to abduct or assassinate Assange.


Assange has been considered an enemy of the state by our federal government for over a decade. He first caught their eye when he began publishing classified information regarding military strikes in Iraq and Afghanistan. He really angered the ruling elites after he published internal Democratic National Committee emails in 2016 that painted Hillary Clinton as the less desirable candidate. In 2017, WikiLeaks started publishing documents regarding the CIA’s efforts to penetrate iPhones and computers worldwide. Pressures were put on Assange, and he was later arrested after encouraging one of his sources to hack a classified computer.


The federal government wants to put Assange on trial and ultimately in prison for the rest of his life for doing something for the American people that our government would never do: He told us the truth. As a journalist, Assange has the responsibility to inform the public of what’s going on in the world around them. Assange used his talents to dig deeper than most journalists are willing to go, because digging so deep may result in criminal charges. Assange’s trial puts a chilling effect on journalists interested in seeking the truth while giving journalists who are willing to be voice boxes for the national narrative the green light.


We need more journalists like Assange informing our public. The government has grown too comfortable lying to us when the truth goes against their agenda. Future journalists, however, will fear similar repercussions if they enter the business of telling the truth. Our government tries to treat Assange’s case as unique in an attempt to not expose their human rights violations. The First Amendment guarantees the right to freedom of speech and free press. Assange’s case must be unique, because he is imprisoned for exercising both.



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