Journalists, political analysts and news outlets on Sunday expressed shock at a report claiming members of former President Donald Trump’s administration plotted to assassinate WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
Yahoo News interviewed more than 30 former Trump administration officials for its article revealing that the United States’ Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), headed by then CIA Director Mike Pompeo, had discussed the assassination or kidnapping of Assange while taking refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in London.
The report also claimed that the Trump administration, in partnership with the British government, was preparing to potentially engage in a dangerous street conflict with Russian agents, if they attempted to help Assange escape the country. .
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After the report was released, the Freedom of the Press Foundation issued a statement calling on the CIA “A shame,” add, “The fact that he has contemplated and initiated so many illegal acts against WikiLeaks, his associates and even other award-winning journalists is an outright scandal that should be investigated by Congress and the Department of Justice.”
The foundation also called on President Joe Biden and his administration to immediately drop all charges against Assange, describing so-called CIA plans like “go too far.”
Horrified journalists, political commentators and analysts around the world have also expressed shock at the details in the report.
Stop what you are doing and read this. The CIA made plans to kill or kidnap an award-winning journalist whose job it didn’t like – before charging him with a felony. The case against Julian Assange must be dropped – and sentenced.https: //t.co/5TCFks1p95
– Edward Snowden (@Snowden) September 26, 2021
So, as Trump opened up about his love for Wikileaks in 2016, he and his administration were plotting to kidnap or kill Assange. The amorality and malleability of Trump and his movement surpass anything we have seen in politics. https://t.co/n1ART0ruSqpic.twitter.com/w9XUG9KQta
– Richard Hanania (@RichardHanania) September 26, 2021
Some people might be surprised that he is considering killing Assange because Trump has campaigned to be anti-establishment. But when you have enough power, you become the establishment. That’s why no president has disclosed Saudi Arabia’s role on September 11.
– Max Abrahms (@MaxAbrahms) September 26, 2021
“You cannot extradite someone you have planned to assassinate” reacted Ryan Grim, Intercept’s Washington DC bureau chief, while reporter Glenn Greenwald tweeted, “Behavior like this by the CIA and now the Biden DOJ is what the * real attacks on press freedom * look like. “
As I said before, behavior like this by the CIA and now the Biden DOJ is what * real attacks on press freedom * look like. I have had nasty tweets posted about me by many people including Bolsonaro. I know the difference. I hope that one day the American media will learn about it too. pic.twitter.com/TTh6GwSmNp
– Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) September 26, 2021
Tommy Vietor, former spokesperson for President Barack Obama, called on House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff and Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Mark Warner to hold hearings into the alleged plot of the CIA.
Others used the report to discredit public figures such as James Ball, editor of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, who argued – as the CIA discussed the Assange assassination – that the WikiLeaks founder was allegedly in security if he left the Ecuadorian embassy and was “Unlikely to be prosecuted in the United States.” “
Assange was forcibly removed from the embassy in 2019 by the London Metropolitan Police and held in Belmarsh Maximum Security Prison, where he remains to this day as the US government attempts to extradite him to face criminal charges. charges including violating espionage law despite the fact he is an Australian citizen.
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