Free Julian Assange!
12 April 2019
The World Socialist Web Site emphatically condemns the forcible seizure and arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. We call for an all-out campaign in the UK and internationally to defend Assange, oppose his extradition to the United States, and secure his freedom and return to Australia, with guarantees against any future prosecution.
Assange is in grave peril. The US Justice Department has issued a statement claiming that Assange only faces charges that could lead to a prison sentence of up to five years if he has been found guilty. This is a transparent lie, the purpose of which is to facilitate Assange’s extradition and provide the Ecuadorean and British governments with a pretext that they are not turning Assange over to a government that might subject him to torture and execution.
If he is transferred to the custody of the United States, anything is possible, including charges of treason that carry a death penalty or indefinite detention as an “enemy combatant.”
Assange has become a target because he did what journalists are supposed to do—expose the truth. Along with Chelsea Manning, who remains in prison for refusing to testify against the WikiLeaks publisher, Assange exposed the crimes that emerged out of wars launched on the basis of lies, which have led to the deaths of more than one million people.
New crimes are now being prepared. Even as the conspiracy against Assange was unfolding, Trump was meeting with Al-Sisi, the butcher of Cairo, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was issuing threats against Iran.
Everyone involved in this crime stands guilty of a monstrous attack on fundamental democratic rights, without even the pretense of…