Below is an email I sent to a few of my family & a few friends, and my response to a friend's reply...edited a bit. In particular, the last full paragraph of this Post was not in my email response at all.
The War on Whistleblowers---After saying during his first Pres campaign for election that they should be protected, Obama prosecuted more of them than anyone in our history. Imagine what Trump's Crew will do to Assange. While the Right & Left squabble, Plutocrats/Oligarchs win again. Their war crimes will continue to go unpunished...all in the name of "safety". Meanwhile, those who expose violations of the Constitution and outright crimes by the Gov't will be persecuted and prosecuted.
...............................................Do a Search for: Tom Drake whistleblower. Bush, Obama & Holder destroyed the career & much of the life of this American hero, a Vet, and an honorable Gov't servant who spent months trying to expose NSA wrongdoing by doing so "within the system". The Powers-That-Be ignored & denigrated him, so he finally went outside the system to expose Gov't crimes. They essentially kneecapped him. Later, Hillary had the gall to state that Manning should have worked within the system, thus gaining the protection of whistleblower status. What a tragic joke. In her youth, Hillary was a Populist, but for some time now, she's been nothing but a multi-millionaire Plutocrat. [Hopefully, she's washed up in politics.]
A friend responded with a somewhat biting critique of Assange... especially relative to the last few years. My reply is below.
No one's perfect. Despite his flaws, I think Assange is a hero. After being cooped up in a building for 7 years, and denied safe passage to a hospital for needed medical diagnosis & treatment, who knows what anyone might do after realizing you're going to be arrested... and most likely extradited to the USA's totally broken Fed Justice System.
As to Russia, their misdeeds re the election merely are payback for all the crap our Gov't heaps on them... we've interfered in their affairs (including elections) for decades. Sanctions, elections, Ukraine, NATO encroachment right up to their border (after it was agreed not to do that), & who knows what else. As to the Dem email leaks, GOOD. I think those were in the public interest--- exposure of the two-faced Hillary, and the manipulation of Primaries by the Dem Upper Crust. The truth was exposed; too bad that the truth did not favor Democrats. That's the fault of Dems, not Russians.
I really am sick & tired of hearing Dems whine about Russians "interfering in our elections". What hypocrisy...and they're still complaining. They should focus on the fact that two Plutocrats were running for President...correct that. The Dems are just as bad as the Repubs when it comes to being self-righteous in terms of election behavior. But the Dems gerrymander, too; the Dems manipulate Primaries, too. Just because the Repubs are worse about it does not excuse Dem behavior... including their self-righteousness.
The article you sent implied that the charge against Assange was not really much...& not related to publishing. Please. He could get 45 years in prison according to a previous lawyer of his. Plus, I don't see how aiding a whistleblower in getting info is not related to publishing that info.
As to Assange (an Australian) favoring Russia, maybe so; but unfortunately, our Gov't is a much bigger threat to the world than the Ruskies ever could be. Not just militarily, but all across the board. There's no doubt whatsoever about that. I don't at all believe their Gov't Plutocrats are the "good guys"; but our Gov't Plutocrats (at the highest levels) are a gazillion times worse, and a monstrous threat to this planet...militarily, economically, financially, environmentally, politically (even though our NeoFeudalism is more subtle than Russia's), & in every other way I can imagine.
Conclusion: all this braying about Russia is, to me, blatant HYPOCRISY... and way overblown... and finally, a distraction from much more important things. As to Assange, our Government's wrongdoings need to be exposed. History shows that the State almost always tries to cover up its crimes by criminalizing those who expose them.
I love this Land; but we need to wake up to the fact that our Fed Gov't is led by a bunch of screwed-up, dangerous, plutocratic oligarchs...and that's no matter whether Republicans or Democrats hold majority power. Another option is to keep drinking the Propaganda Kool Aid, bury our heads in the sand, and hope everything turns out okay. Another option is to continue to believe (as the True Believers do) that only the Republicans or the Democrats have the right solution to our problems... in other words, to continue to believe the Propaganda coming from one or the other of those two camps.
Not only my opinion. Be Well