There has been a lot of talk about the U.S. diplomatic cables released by Wikileaks and how the group came to obtain said documents. Julian Assange has been arrested on bogus charges and teenagers who may have little knowledge of the legal ramifications are shutting down websites all over the world with DDOS attacks. Naturally, because the leaks involved the United States, the suspicious minds over at Fox News had to pipe in about it.
Yes, you heard that correctly. The fine whines at Fox are calling for Julian Assange to be assassinated in direct violation of international law in a literal interpretation of killing the messenger.
Julian Assange may be a pompous jerk, but he's just the owner of Wikileaks. He also has no loyalty to the United States, and as a foreigner has not engaged in acts of treason in even the most liberal definition. Everyone knows that every modern nation engages in spying- these cables simply gave the general public insight into how it's done. I think what is most shocking to laypeople is the fact that the cables were so unprotected, how absolutely insecure intelligence is today.
I suspect that the man who handed over the cables in question to Wikileaks may have behaved in an illegal fashion, but therein lies the point. There is a specific process involved in prosecuting those who violate the law. However, Julian Assange himself broke no law and even if he were to have done so it is not up to you, me, or the rejects at Fox News to mete out the punishment. While the process that brought the information to Assange's group may be questionable, once the press holds the information it is free to read it, interpret it, publish it, and ridicule it. This is the reason why David Letterman, every news agency, and myself have not wound up in handcuffs.
Taking out Julian Assange will not halt the flow of information in our modern age. Mr. Assange is merely one of many who believe in absolute freedom of information and its exchange. What I suspect here is that Bob Beckel is upset that some of his cables will be released to the world at large, and I'm left to wonder what it is that's so damning that the windbag is willing to encourage murder to prevent from getting out. The talking heads didn't seem to mind when Wikileaks released documents that caused awareness of other nations' policies, so what exactly is Bob afraid of now?
When a nation like Iran uses fear-based propaganda to attack freedom of the press, those of us in the West condemn them, and for good reason. The ability to report events, past and present, is one of the traditions enshrined into the constitutions of every liberated nation. A minimally-obstructed media is what permits us to think without fear, and to even propose interference suggests alliance with the ideals we find so abhorrent.
It doesn't matter whether or not you agree with Julian Assange's decision to leak diplomatic cables, his opinions, or the way he lives his life. While the Wikileaks founder may be many things, he's not a terrorist. However, even suggesting that a peaceful man be secretly executed because of his message fits the very definition of terrorism.