House Intelligence Committee Seeks Answers from CIA on Plot Against Assange

The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee told Yahoo! News that the committee has asked Langley to explain reports of plans to kill or kidnap the WikiLeaks publisher. 

Adam Schiff (Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons)

By Joe Lauria
Special to Consortium News

Adam Schiff, the chairman of the U.S. House Intelligence Committee, said Tuesday the committee has requested information from the CIA about reported plans to assassinate or abduct Julian Assange, the imprisoned WikiLeaks publisher.

Schiff told Yahoo! News that the request has already been made to the agency but refused to comment on whether the CIA has yet replied, the news site reported. 

Schiff acted after reading a Yahoo! story last month that confirmed and expanded upon earlier reports from a Spanish court case that the CIA was seriously discussing killing or renditioning Assange. 

Assange is next week to face a U.S. appeal of a January decision by lower court Judge Vanessa Baraitser not to extradite him because of a high-risk of suicide. The U.S. is seeking to overturn the ruling that Assange is too sick to be sent to a U.S. prison. U.S. prosecutors allege that Assange is a malingerer. 

Assange’s lawyers intend to bring up the CIA’s plans. Yahoo! reported Tuesday that “lawyers for Assange intend to raise the issue of what they view as the CIA’s misconduct, arguing that returning him to a country where some top officials once plotted to kidnap him strengthens the judge’s conclusions about the risk of suicide and should be an additional basis for turning down the U.S. extradition request.” 

Baraitser, who heard testimony in Assange’s extradition hearing about the CIA plot against him, showed little concern, even sympathy with the agency, writing in her judgement that “if the allegations are true, they demonstrate a high level of concern by the US authorities regarding Mr. Assange’s ongoing activities.” 

The CIA plot against Assange was discussed at senior levels of the Trump administration and was instigated by Trump’s CIA chief Mike Pompeo, Yahoo! reported. Schiff was a bitter foe of Donald Trump. The Yahoo! reporting mentions that discussions about covert action against Assange had already been discussed in the Obama administration, presumably by Obama’s CIA director John Brennan. 

Fears that he could be assassinated go back to at least October 2010, when the Obama CIA refused to say if there were such plans after a Freedom of Information Act request.  This tweet is from eleven years ago:

 

Joe Lauria is editor-in-chief of Consortium News and a former UN correspondent for The Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe,  and numerous other newspapers. He was an investigative reporter for the Sunday Times of London and began his professional work as a stringer for The New York Times.  He can be reached at joelauria@consortiumnews.com and followed on Twitter @unjoe .

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16 comments for “House Intelligence Committee Seeks Answers from CIA on Plot Against Assange

  1. dhinds
    October 22, 2021 at 17:30

    Julian Assange committed no crimes whatsoever.

    He is in prison he REVEALED the existence of criminal acts committed or protected by active members of the US Government, the US Military or hired US Government Contractors and for no other reason.

    In other words: The Wrong People are In Jail

    And the wrong people are not!

  2. Dave
    October 22, 2021 at 01:18

    I’m just adding my name to all the people who read ‘Schiff’, and knew exactly where this was going. He disgusts me.

  3. October 21, 2021 at 19:29

    CIA = CRIMINAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY

  4. Mark Lind-Hanson
    October 21, 2021 at 09:00

    Like, Schiff is gonna be taking Assange’s side. Ha. I laugh, barfing. The guy most responsible for pushing the Russiagate fantasy among the Democrats is going to support ‘the fugitive’ or expose more of the more than casual involvement the US has had in his continued restrictive confinement? Ja, I laugh, barfing.

  5. October 21, 2021 at 05:17

    “don’t need a Weatherman to know which way the wind blows”

    • October 21, 2021 at 13:09

      Well said, concise & accurate. Lockem UP..!!! All cards are on the table.7

  6. Susan
    October 20, 2021 at 15:28

    “House Intelligence”? That’s an oxymoron if I ever heard one. Like these fools don’t know what’s really going on? Give me a break! Assange is innocent and these are the bastards that should be in jail for crimes against humanity…

  7. onno37
    October 20, 2021 at 10:42

    The same as with John F. & Robert Kennedy who were murdered by the CIA/FBI. What a stupid show by Schiff. As we all know USA is a country of CRIMINALS Governed by criminals!

  8. torture this
    October 20, 2021 at 10:25

    Heaven help us if freedom of the press hinges on the likes of Adam Schiff!

  9. Wortmanberg
    October 20, 2021 at 09:50

    It’s Adam Schiff, the intelligence agencies’ wet dream of “oversight” and Russiagate, that’s asking here, so don’t expect too much. I can picture him at an opulent Washington restaurant with a director or deputy or two of the “intelligence community” and speaking to them in what he thinks is cleverly concealed code with a giant smarmy grin, to the effect of “Hey guys, this’ll blow over. I just have to put in an appearance of finding the facts.” How one becomes like this guy is something I’ll never grasp.

  10. John Perry
    October 20, 2021 at 09:09

    It’s the equivalent of having industry leaders or lobbyists run industry oversight agencies. “We officially investigated it, and they told us it wasn’t true.”

  11. Jo
    October 20, 2021 at 06:34

    More likely he wants to know how this news came out as it may help Assange legal situation…and probably do his best to nullify it and all the other secrets that should be revealed.

  12. Andrew Peter Nichols
    October 19, 2021 at 22:58

    It’d be even nicer if the Brit judge hearing Assanges show trial appeal took an interest in this, but given the revelations to date (that would have sunk any genuine trial without trace) have been completely ignored, there is no chance. British justice has been irredeemably damaged.

  13. Jon Adams
    October 19, 2021 at 19:21

    Hell! Adam Schiff probably wants Assange killed, as well.

    • cjonsson1
      October 20, 2021 at 12:38

      Absolutely. Adam Schiff is not there to help anybody but himself. He wants Julian disappeared as much as Hillary and the CIA do.

  14. Mark Thomason
    October 19, 2021 at 19:21

    This inquiry will go nowhere, and disappear quickly.

    The answer is: This is what Hillary wanted. She asked. Pencil-neck does not want to hear that.

Comments are closed.