Why the U.S. Shouldn’t Prosecute Assange–For the U.S.’s Sake, Not His
Harms to American Freedom of the Press
1. The balance between information security and freedom of the press generally permits both government secrecy and publication.
2. If the government can prosecute Assange for publishing illegally obtained information, then it can prosecute most journalists.
3. Assange looks more like a 21st Century journalist than a terrorist.
4. If the government can prosecute Assange for “conspiring” with his source, all journalists are conspirators.
5. If the First Amendment doesn’t protect Wikileaks, it doesn’t protect The Economist or Roberto Benigni.
6. If the government can pressure private companies to silence Wikileaks, it can silence anyone.
Harms to American Diplomacy
1. We will possibly fail to convict Assange, while handing autocrats an argument to justify politically motivated prosecutions.
2. We will look weak and hypocritical, affecting our moral standing abroad and at home. Could we