Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Obama Administration Looking into Criminal Charges Against WikiLeaks

For the past several months the controversial site WikiLeaks has been releasing sensitive data to the world.  The documents the organization has leaked, according to analysts and the Obama Administration, puts the lives of Americans overseas and at home at risk.  This data pertains to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, internal and conflicts abroad, as well as candid statements from the U.S. government about foreign leaders and situations.

This has been going on for months now and on Sunday, new documents began to be released.  Now, all of a sudden, the Obama Administration has decided that it could be illegal.  I suppose the Obama Administration is trying to tell the American people that they are "on top" of the situation:
"Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said the Justice Department and Pentagon are conducting "an active, ongoing criminal investigation.'' Others familiar with the probe said the FBI is examining everyone who came into possession of the documents, including those who gave the materials to WikiLeaks and also the organization itself. No charges are imminent, the sources said, and it is unclear whether any will be brought."
How is this batch of leaks different than previous ones?  No one is quite certain, but it is very possible that the Obama Administration is aware of documents that can hurt them either politically or criminally.  Therefore, they are trying to stop and/or prosecute WikiLeaks before these documents are released.

Yet the questions of 'why,' 'how,' and 'if' still abound:
"Former prosecutors cautioned that prosecutions involving leaked classified information are difficult because the Espionage Act is a 1917 statute that preceded Supreme Court cases that expanded First Amendment protections. The government also would have to persuade another country to turn over Assange, who is outside the United States.

But the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the inquiry is rapidly unfolding, said charges could be filed under the act. The U.S. attorney's office in Alexandria - which in 2005 brought Espionage Act charges, now dropped, against two former pro-Israel lobbyists - is involved in the effort, the sources said.

The Pentagon is leading the investigation and it remains unclear whether any additional charges would be brought in the military or civilian justice systems. Pfc. Bradley Manning, an Army intelligence analyst suspected of being the source of the WikiLeaks documents, was arrested by the military this year."
Why now?  If not now, when?  And what exactly is the Obama Administration thinking?  These questions will be answered in time.
President Obama
Another possibility:  the Obama Administration is this incompetent.  They are so incompetent that they allowed an organization to hurt our national security and put people's lives in danger and is only now trying trying to stop them.

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