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Thread: Net closes on Assange: arrest by British police expected in days

  1. #21
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    Re: Net closes on Assange: arrest by British police expected in days

    Quote Originally Posted by SirPwn4lot View Post
    I'm open to any legitimate legislation they can point to. But I have seen none. Can some of you who are calling for his imprisonment cite some legislation he's violated? I also don't see how the United States can charge a non-citizen for a "crime" (again, I need to know the law) that wasn't even "committed" on US land. Furthermore I don't see how they can charge Wikileaks but not all the other media organizations (Fox News, MSNBC, print media, foreign media, etc, etc) that has ALSO spread the cables. I don't see any difference between them.

    Thanks in advance for your speedy reply.
    Regarding the other organizations being charged, it just plain becomes impractical. In this case those that sent the info to Wikileaks, and then Wikileaks, are the targets. Once its out there via the internet, you'd have millions that could be charged. Look back to such as The Pentagon Papers, Daniel Ellsberg, etc. This may be a long read, but it is interesting, and has parallels:

    Pentagon Papers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    With no mass distribution ability such as the internet in 71-72, it was left to a few newspapers. The NY Times was the main venue. A few interesting twists from that episode:

    To ensure the possibility of public debate about the content of the papers, on June 29, US Senator Mike Gravel (then Democrat, Alaska) entered 4,100 pages of the Papers to the record of his Subcommittee on Public Buildings and Grounds. These portions of the Papers were subsequently published by Beacon Press, the publishing arm of the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations.[5]

    Article I, Section 6 of the United States Constitution provides that "for any Speech or Debate in either House, [a Senator or Representative] shall not be questioned in any other Place", thus the Senator could not be prosecuted for anything said on the Senate floor, and, by extension, for anything entered to the Congressional Record, allowing the Papers to be publicly read without threat of a treason trial and conviction. This was confirmed by the Supreme Court in the decision Gravel v. United States.
    Ellsberg surrendered to authorities in Boston and admitted that he had given the papers to the press. He was later indicted on charges of stealing and holding secret documents by a grand jury in Los Angeles.[8] Federal District Judge Byrne declared a mistrial and dismissed all charges against Ellsberg [and Russo] on May 11, 1973, after several irregularities appeared in the government's case, including its claim that it had lost records of illegal wiretapping against Ellsberg conducted by the White House Plumbers in the contemporaneous Watergate scandal.[3] Byrne ruled: "The totality of the circumstances of this case which I have only briefly sketched offend a sense of justice. The bizarre events have incurably infected the prosecution of this case.
    Times v. United States is generally considered a victory for an extensive reading of the First Amendment, but as the Supreme Court ruled on whether the government had made a successful case for prior restraint, its decision did not void the Espionage Act or give the press unlimited freedom to publish classified documents. A majority of the justices ruled that the government could still prosecute the Times and the Post for violating the Espionage Act by publishing the documents. Ellsberg and Russo were not acquitted of violating the Espionage Act; they were freed due to a mistrial from irregularities in the government's case
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  2. #22
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    Re: Net closes on Assange: arrest by British police expected in days

    Quote Originally Posted by Councilman View Post
    Here's hoping he spends the rest of his life in prison for rape. Or better yet that the Russians get pissed and kill the bastard.

    It's clear that "Firsters" love this son of a bitch because they don't care about putting peoples lives at risk, clearly an un-American position.
    your anger is missplaced. it should be largely directed at the American citizens that are leaking this information.

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    Re: Net closes on Assange: arrest by British police expected in days

    Quote Originally Posted by SirPwn4lot View Post
    I have come across this, but I thought we had discussed this charge enough.

    Very well, the Espionage Act has never been successfully prosecuted against a media organization. Brandenburg v. Ohio established that "imminent lawless action" is required for the government to prosecute speech. New York Times Co. v. United States established precedent that the media had a right to release classified materials, regardless of government claims of the need to maintain secrecy.

    Eric Holder evidently thinks he's got some chance. Let's see, but Wikileaks will mount a strong defense.

    I'd be interested in the outcome of charges, if it comes to that, and hopefully this will provoke a constitutional review of the Act. Numerous Supreme Court decisions have limited it, but none have completely overruled it.

    Thanks!
    We can possibly make an issue here. From what I have bolded above. The issue here is not speech, but property. Brandenburg seems to be about speech and advocating violence via speech, short of inciting to riot. Regarding your second assertion about releasing and/or publishing classified info, I do not believe SCOTUS made that ruling. What it did rule was on the ability of the Executive to issue a restraining order with regard to publication. It would appear they recognized a very high threshold for "imminent danger" to validate such Executive restraint. However, they did not rule directly on the applicability of the Espionage Act to the publication of classified and secret documents once done.

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    Re: Net closes on Assange: arrest by British police expected in days

    He can't be charged under the Espionage Act because of the legal precedent that was set not only by the two cases mentioned but also by the development of case law that came out of it, especially the Judge's conclusions that have been publicized and put into law.
    "I do not claim that every incident in the history of empire can be explained in directly economic terms. Economic interests are filtered through a political process, policies are implemented by a complex state apparatus, and the whole system generates its own momentum."

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    Re: Net closes on Assange: arrest by British police expected in days

    Bradley Manning absolutely can, and should be.
    “Offing those rich pigs with their own forks and knives, and then eating a meal in the same room, far out! The Weathermen dig Charles Manson.”-- Bernadine Dohrn

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    Re: Net closes on Assange: arrest by British police expected in days

    Quote Originally Posted by Khayembii Communique View Post
    He can't be charged under the Espionage Act because of the legal precedent that was set not only by the two cases mentioned but also by the development of case law that came out of it, especially the Judge's conclusions that have been publicized and put into law.
    Well, we have linked articles, and you can easily find more yourself, by folks with far more legal expertise than either of us, that say Assange very likely can be charged under that Act. Can you at least link to something that would validate your opinion ? I do not know one way or the other, except from what I have linked to, which although it points out that the Act has not been tested yet with regard to the Internet, argued that he could be charged. I expect our Justice Department will decide one way or the other soon enough as well. Thanks.

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