Posts Tagged ‘Assange’
August 4th, 2010 at 5:48 pm
Should the WikiLeakers Get the Death Penalty?
Posted by Print

Should the range of potential punishment for leaking classified Afghanistan data include the death penalty?

The statute codifying the subject offense, Title 18 U.S.C. Section 794(b) specifically includes that possibility:

Whoever, in time of war, with intent that the same shall be communicated to the enemy, collects, records, publishes, or communicates, or attempts to elicit any information with respect to the movement, numbers, description, condition, or disposition of any of the Armed Forces, ships, aircraft, or war materials of the United States, or with respect to the plans or conduct, or supposed plans or conduct of any naval or military operations, or with respect to any works or measures undertaken for or connected with, or intended for the fortification or defense of any place, or any other information relating to the public defense, which might be useful to the enemy, shall be punished by death or by imprisonment for any term of years or for life.”

Such sober voices as Tony Blankley, who actually opposes the Afghan war, suggest that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange should not be protected “from being prosecuted and possibly executed by the U.S. government for wartime espionage.”  Whatever one’s opinion on the war itself, Assange’s conduct has clearly jeopardized American troops’ lives, not to mention the lives of Afghans (and their families) who have taken great risk in assisting us against the Taliban and al Qaeda.  Indeed, Assange should pray that his punishment comes at the hands of U.S. authorities, not some vengeful person horribly affected by his crime.