At first I supported #Assange
. I support the idea of both #whistleblowers
and government openness, and some of the leaks contained information about American wars that he public needed to know.
I supported the #leaking
of the pentagon papers by Daniel #Elsberg
, which exposed that the government had been lying to the American people and sending young men to die for a cause that they already knew they couldn’t win, in #Vietnam
At first, Assange came off to me as an #anarchist
and true #libertarian
who only wanted the public to know what their government was doing. I never considered him a #journalist
and I don’t consider Elsberg one either. Elsberg was a #whistleblower
. He xeroxed or mimeographed each of the pentagon papers and smuggled them out of the Pentagon himself.
Assange created an online resource for whistleblowers to anonymously post secret documents.
Whistleblowers, not #journalists
So far, so good.
But the problem with Assange is that while he runs an international resource, his focus seems to be on #American
. He still hasn’t released anything damaging to #trump
, but also, he has been too uncritical of other countries, many of which have many more restrictions on the flow of #information
and engage in open #censorship
. When is the last time you have heard of wikileaks helping the #Chinese
people circumvent some of the most draconian and high-tech censorship systems on earth?
And then there’s #Russia
. For me the issue is not some #nationalist
fear of the "Russian Bear’. The issue is that there are some very repressive regimes left over from the old #Soviet
Republics, supported by #Putin
, and wikileaks apparently released the names of some #dissidents
who were then arrested.
It seems to me that Assange is more interested in hurting America and helping Russia, than he is in having a world of openness.
So I question whether he is any kind of anarchist or libertarian. He seems to be on the side of Putin and the #far-right
, including trump, against the liberals in America. He might even be a #fascist
Do I want him in jail for #espionage
? No. I don’t care if he goes free. But he is no longer any kind of #hero