Former Congressman Ron Paul believes that President Donald Trump has betrayed Julian Assange.
In one of his latest articles, Paul provides a big picture analysis of the “deep state,” the shadow government made up of bureaucracies and agencies that run politics without the consent of the governed. The deep state meme gained notoriety during the exhausting Special Counsel Investigation in which the FBI failed to prove that Trump allegedly colluded with Russian officials to get elected in 2016.
Paul is correct in claiming that the deep state “is not just some crazy conspiracy theory.” It’s a part of U.S. politics that has been kept under wraps for decades, but because of the black swan nature of Trump’s victory in 2016, it has been placed under the microscope like never before. Now, people are beginning to question institutions like the CIA and FBI, which used to be held sacrosanct.
Individuals like Julian Assange worked assiduously through Wikileaks, a non-profit organization dedicated to publishing news leaks, to create an environment where more people started to question the legitimacy of legacy institutions. Ironically, Trump praised Wikileaks on the campaign trail when it exposed Hilary Clinton’s dirty laundry.
Sadly, Trump gave Assange the cold shoulder when he was arrested last year. When he was asked about Wikileaks following Assange’s arrest in April of 2019, Trump said “I know nothing about Wikileaks,” and added that, “It’s really not my thing.”
Thanks to pressure from the U.S. government, the Ecuadorian embassy in London terminated Assange’s asylum. Since his high profile arrest in London last April, Assange has been subject to torturous conditions, likely the result of indirect U.S. influence on London.
On February 24, 2020, Assange faced an extradition hearing at a U.K. courthouse. The U.S. is currently pursuing a 175-year prison sentence against Assange. Like with his foreign policy, Trump appears to be giving in to the influence of the establishment figures around him and giving power to the very swamp he supposedly campaigned against.
The looming Assange trial would represent a clear affront to free speech rights, especially of the sort that expose some of the nastiest details surrounding the foreign policy establishment. To quote the former Texas congressman, “We don’t have freedom of speech so we can talk about the weather. We have the 1st Amendment so that we can say very controversial things.”
Should Assange be successfully convicted, it could set in motion bad precedents for future whistleblowers and other journalists who put out content exposing foreign policy elites.
If Donald Trump is serious about making America great again and sticking it to the deep state, he should pardon Assange immediately.