ELECTION 2020: Media Silence on Assange Aids Trump

By ignoring Donald Trump’s apparent abuse of power in allegedly ordering Julian Assange’s arrest, it seems the liberal media’s hatred for Assange trumps that of Trump, argues Elizabeth Vos.

Donald Trump (Flickr Gage Skidmore)

By Elizabeth Vos
Special to Consortium News

As the U.S. presidential election cycle enters its final days, the liberal media that is backing Joe Biden has arguably helped Donald Trump’s reelection chances by failing to report on the groundbreaking evidence presented by Julian Assange’s defense team in the imprisoned journalist’s extradition hearing in September.

The same U.S. media that benefited from the Chelsea Manning-era publications that Assange is now being prosecuted for publishing, and who nominally consider themselves avatars of “resistance” against Trump, are avoiding what would amount to a hard-hitting scandal for Trump, were it to be properly covered in the press.

Testimony given in the last week of the Assange hearing was particularly damning for the White House, as evidence was aired that connected the Trump administration directly to the efforts to prosecute Assange.

As reported by Consortium News, journalist Cassandra Fairbanks testified that, “President Donald Trump had personally ordered Julian Assange’s arrest from the Ecuadorian embassy in London in April 2019… Her testimony, especially of Trump’s role, bolstered the defense argument that Assange’s prosecution is political and therefore violates the U.S.-UK extradition treaty.”

Jennifer Robinson (Wikimedia Commons)

Jennifer Robinson, a lawyer for Assange, also testified that Trump indirectly offered Assange a pardon in August 2017 if the journalist would reveal the source of WikiLeaks’ 2016 DNC and John Podesta email publications to disprove Russiagate. Assange stuck to the principle of refusing to reveal his sources, which apparently induced Trump’s ire, ostensibly contributing to his April 2019 order to have Assange arrested.

Additionally, the CEO of private security firm UC Global, David Morales, was allegedly paid by a U.S. intelligence agency to illegally spy on Assange in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London during the Trump administration, according to testimony at Assange’s hearing by two witnesses from Morales’ trial in Spain for violating Assange’s privacy.

Morales was said to have spied at the behest of an “American intelligence agency,” most likely the CIA, with funds channeled through a company owned by casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, Trump’s largest mega-donor.

As Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg explained on CNLive!:

“These are sensational revelations, if traced to the oval office, as they surely could be. It is the CIA acting not as a rogue agency, it is acting as they normally do, for the oval office… This is very clearly a high crime and misdemeanor, an impeachable [offense].”

As Ellsberg also pointed out on CNLive!, The New York Times has failed to report on Assange’s extradition hearing since Sept. 16. Other major media also largely ignored the hearing.

Ellsberg, whom the U.S. government unsuccessfully prosecuted under the Espionage Act, compared his case to Assange’s. He likened the perpetrators of an attempted break-in at his psychiatrist’s office (which led to a mistrial) with the UC Global employees who testified to the security firm’s illegal spying on Assange:

“This is sensational news, amazing. Sworn testimony by the people [from UC Global] who actually carried out the penetrations. We didn’t have that in the ‘plumbers’ case. [Gordon] Liddy and [Howard] Hunt kept their mouths shut.”

On the revelation that U.S. authorities had gained access to Assange’s privileged sessions with lawyers in the embassy, Ellsberg said:

“No criminal, of whatever charge, could get a fair trial when his privacy with his lawyers has been so interfered with, and there have been such offenses as discussions of kidnapping him and killing him, poisoning him.”

Daniel Ellsberg (Free Getty embed, Paul J. Richards)

The liberal U.S. media has ignored this aspect of the story too, despite the likely connection to Trump’s White House and the strong parallels with Ellsberg’s case, which was front-page news in the early 1970s.

This might be explained by the liberal media buying and selling the story that Assange was somehow responsible for Trump’s election because he published damaging—and accurate—emails about corruption in the DNC and the Hillary Clinton campaign (which led to five DNC officials being forced to resign.)

By ignoring testimony of Trump’s apparent abuse of power in allegedly ordering Assange’s arrest, it seems the media’s hatred for Assange trumps that of Trump. This is all the more concerning because of the implications of Assange’s prosecution for press freedom, which cuts at the heart of the media’s self-interest.

One might think that an intelligence agency under the Trump administration spying on Assange’s medical and legal proceedings and stealing legally privileged material after his expulsion from the embassy, allegedly at the behest of Trump, would be headline news vital for voters before heading to the polls.  That it was the Trump Justice Department who indicted Assange after the Obama administration had declined to might also have made a mark on the media. 

All of these revelations should have been fuel for the anti-Trump media. Instead the extradition proceedings have been met with virtual silence. It seems there are two major areas where the mainstream press doesn’t push back on Trump: war, and Assange.

For four years, the news cycle has been flooded with empty allegations of Trump-Russia collusion and alleged Russian hacking. Yet, when there is a real opportunity to air a tangible and deeply significant criticism of Trump, the media falls silent.

What does this tell us? That the media’s loyalty to the intelligence community and endless war transcends its hatred towards Trump? Or that the corporate press can’t stand to admit (or even recognize) that the singular journalist they blamed for Trump’s presidency is now the most targeted by that same president?

Though independent media have covered the bombshell content of the extradition hearing that some have called the ‘trial of the century,’ and have excoriated the legacy press for their silence on the matter, few have noted that the silence is not simply shameful, but actively benefits Trump in his reelection bid.

The corporate media is, by its silence, complicit with the Trump administration’s prosecution of a journalist. As a result, the mainstream news establishment has revealed in the days leading up to a presidential election just how compromised their stance of being Trump’s loudest “adversaries” really is.

Elizabeth Vos is a freelance reporter and co-host of CN Live. 

The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.

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10 comments for “ELECTION 2020: Media Silence on Assange Aids Trump

  1. michael888
    November 2, 2020 at 09:57

    Remember Chelsea Manning, inexorably linked to Assange and wikileaks, was not prosecuted by idiot Bush but rather was imprisoned and tortured from 2010 to her trial in 2013, and received 35 years in a kangaroo court (for exposing the Granai massacre) under Obama. Her sentence was commuted after seven years. The MSM CANNOT side with Manning/ Assange against Obama, just not allowed (or Hillary– who first said her “Let’s just drone him!” was a joke, then finding that it was not recorded, said she never said that).
    Trump no longer can say Boo! to the CIA or FBI or State Department, all of whom are pushing for life-time imprisonment of Assange. Our fine Establishment has its priorities. Biden stopped any country from accepting Assange as a dissident by threatening to cut off aid. There will be no difference for Assange when Biden wins.

  2. James
    November 2, 2020 at 09:46

    Appreciate the good reporting, I try to identify any bias, by forward projecting what the outcome fruition if realized . Larger dynamic then if then.
    Seems everything is relative.

  3. geeyp
    November 2, 2020 at 07:38

    Hello Ms. Vos – At the time, we saw Cassandra stop a couple of times and question two men in their all night “vigil” parked on the street in front of Julians’ London asylum. Those same two men were the one’s who as Julian’s feet were hauled out days later, immediately went inside and I would guess were the ones who gathered up Julian’s papers, computers etc. for the CIA. I respect Cassandra very much and I don’t think she actually has proof, only hearsay, regarding President Trump calling for his arrest. I would also guess Mike Pompass had something to do with it. After all, you wrote Donald Trump’s “…apparent”… in ” allegedly”…ordering Julian Assange’s arrest. The main stream news prints stories all the time with no evidence to show for them. The point regarding media silence is well said.

  4. Calgacus
    November 2, 2020 at 06:18

    It’s an old story. The press howls to free Barrabas, not Jesus, whose very existence pricks the consciences they work so hard to suppress.

  5. Me Myself
    November 1, 2020 at 17:55

    Is the real reason for J.A.’S extradition to get access to him and his russiagate sources (not for punishment so much).

    If the current administration could conclusively prove russiagate was a fabrication wouldn’t that show the DNC as criminal organization?

    Like Emeril Lagasse would says BAM!

  6. November 1, 2020 at 08:19

    Hatred could very well be part of the presttitutes issue. I would be more inclined to argue that the msm, owned by a handful of globalists and used for the sole purpose of propaganda, sees Arrange and the truth as the enemy. Assange also represents the people in conveying the truth. So the agenda of msm silence seems more an act of suppression of truth and freedom of speech rather than hatred. Hatred seems far too simplistic for these times and this horrific silence about Assange’s case, torture and mistreatment.

  7. remo
    November 1, 2020 at 04:00

    The DNC/DC Swamp, front running the crime family BIDEN (as opposed to their front running the crime family CLINTON in 2016) have given the voters no choice in the matter. Evidence of billions of influence dollars from foreign Intelligence sources and others at the highest levels in the Biden data, plus the Burisma evidence already long known, confirms the malevolence of the cabal their choosing Biden as candidate in the first place.
    The sons’ sexual and drug depredations absolutely O U T the entire Biden/DNC/deepstate putsch, thus forcing their backers into a ‘D’ notice type panic, censoring all news of it. A very bad move in the ‘land of the free’ in the time of global independent media alerted to it. Especially as suspicions of the ‘co-incidental’ release of a systems’ expectant pandemic, sourced in the Fauci/Wuhan joint Labs, begin to gain ground.
    This hurried blundering in the matrix of power and control allows a global audience to suddenly see the players (the cat walked twice) – and for trump to fully exploit it.

    Once achieved, trump will pardon Assange, Snowdon and Manning for their sacrifice in bringing this all to fruition.(that last part is wishful thinking)

  8. Mark Thomason
    October 31, 2020 at 16:27

    Inconvenient truth makes hard choices. The Democratic media chose Hillary over truth.

    Assange published genuine documents that revealed an ugly truth. That made him heretic.

    • Rob Roy
      November 1, 2020 at 23:50

      It also made him heroic.

  9. October 31, 2020 at 14:47

    The author has a point, although I tend to think Biden wouldn’t welcome the publicity.

    It might create a burden he does not want.

    The press may just be trying to keep things as simple as possible. They want no complexities getting in the way of getting rid of Trump.

    Remember, the great prosecutor of heroic whistle-blowers was none other than Barack Obama of the big smile, and he was Biden’s boss for eight years.

    He was ruthless. He is responsible for the exile or jailing of all the noted ones, as well as being responsible for the creation of the hideous NSA supercomputer complex. He also never closed Guantanamo as he promised.

    Obama, despite his pleasant public persona, was a highly secretive man.

    Colleagues at the University of Chicago commented on that in the past. He kept to himself.

    I have a moderate suspicion that he was CIA, as very much was George H W Bush.

    The whole complex effort by the security agencies to prevent Trump’s election or to hurt him after being elected had to be overseen by Obama. All those senior guys speaking out and acting secretly just does not happen without the blessing of the President.

    The fact that the plots failed so miserably and embarrassingly can almost support the CIA thesis. So very many of their spider-web plots abroad have backfired.

    He certainly did yeoman’s service for the military-security complex with his Middle East wars, extrajudicial drone killing system, going after whistle-blowers, and support of secrecy.

    Here is the truly remarkable photo of George H W Bush that virtually proves he was CIA, although there are lots of other clues and bits of evidence:


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