WATCH: CN Live! — ‘Assange’s Last Stand?’

Chris Hedges and Alexander Mercouris joined CN Live! from London  to discuss Julian Assange’s two-day hearing at the High Court.

Imprisoned WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange’s fight continues to stop his extradition to the United States where he has been charged with espionage and computer intrusion for the routine practice of journalism. However, what Assange revealed is anything but routine.

As Mark Summers, one of the barristers who argued in his defense at this week’s two day hearing, told the High Court, there is a nexus between Assange’s publications and his pursuit by the United States, making that government no better than any authoritarian regime that hunts down a journalist for revealing its secret crimes.

Justices Jeremy Johnson and Dame Victoria Sharp informed the court after 10 hours of hearings over two days that they are reserving their judgment of Assange’s fate for an unspecified future date. A deadline of March 4 was given for final submission of papers. A decision can come any time after that.

Johnson and Sharp are considering whether to allow Assange to appeal the home secretary’s extradition order and various points of law in the magistrate court’s decision three years ago.

The magistrate had ordered Assange released on health grounds but on the basis of assurances that it would not mistreat Assange in the United States, the U.S. won on appeal at the High Court, which reversed the magistrate’s decision.

The U.K. Supreme Court then refused to take Assange’s challenge of the legality of these assurances and last June a single High Court judge also refused Assange’s leave to appeal. This week’s two-day hearing was an attempt by Assange to reverse that decision, an appeal for the right to appeal, as it were.

It was a dry-run to try to convince the judges that there is enough contested evidence in this case to permit a full-blown appeal.

It was possibly Assange’s last stand in Britain to avoid being sent in chains to the U.S. to face espionage and computer intrusion charges and up to 175 years in a maximum-security prison.

There were myriad issues covered in the 10 hours of hearings over two days, including why the Home Office has not asked the U.S. for assurances it will not seek the death penalty for Assange; whether a foreign national can be denied First Amendment protection on U.S. soil; whether Assange is being extradited for a political offense that is forbidden by British law; and whether Assange practicing routine journalism was actually a villain trying to get U.S. informants killed and bring down precious U.S. national security.


4 comments for “WATCH: CN Live! — ‘Assange’s Last Stand?’

  1. Valerie
    February 23, 2024 at 09:40

    “WASHINGTON, Jan 18, 2011 (Reuters) – Internal U.S. government reviews have determined that a mass leak of diplomatic cables caused only limited damage to U.S. interests abroad, despite the Obama administration’s public statements to the contrary.”

    “A congressional official briefed on the reviews said the administration felt compelled to say publicly that the revelations had seriously damaged American interests in order to bolster legal efforts to shut down the WikiLeaks website and bring charges against the leakers.”

    “Fantasy world” is the right terminology Mr. Lauria.

  2. February 22, 2024 at 23:16

    I wonder how much these Judges care about their legacy…

  3. February 22, 2024 at 22:16

    It appears that the process is the punishment…Heartbreaking…

  4. anon
    February 22, 2024 at 17:26

    Aren’t we lucky to live in a country that cherishes free speech and civil liberties and journalism and where the courts are not politicised and free of political interference?


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