Later this month, Julian Assange of Wikileaks is scheduled to have what may be his final Great Britain hearing regarding the ruling that he will be extradited from Great Britain to America. In light of this situation, legal scholar and former New Jersey state judge Andrew Napolitano posted on Friday a video commentary in which he directs comments to the British judges who will preside at the hearing, asking them to reject extradition.
Napolitano starts off his video commentary describing Assange as “an American hero and an international hero as well.” Further, argues Napolitano, Assange “is the most important journalist in the world at this moment in time because he had the courage and intellectual fortitude to expose the fatal and maniacal excesses of the American government and its foreign policy in the Middle East.”
The information Assange published regarding the United States government that is at the heart of why the US demands his extradition was information that Napolitano explains is freely publishable under US law. Citing the US Supreme Court’s Pentagon Papers decision for support, Napolitano summarizes the relevant law as follows: “When a journalist receives something of material interest to the public — it doesn’t matter how he receives it, he is free to publish it without civil or criminal liability.”
Assange should thus be protected under US law from prosecution. As Napolitano, who is an Advisory Borad member for the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity, puts it, Assange “should not be tried for anything” and the ongoing effort to prosecute him is a “profound injustice.”
After laying out this information, Napolitano directs his comments to the judges for the upcoming hearing. Napolitano concludes that “Julian Assange cannot get a fair trial in the United States on these charges” and will also “never see the light of day” if extradited, suggesting Assange will spend the remainder of his life incarcerated. Indeed, Napolitano states that extradition will kill Assange. This may sound extreme, but keep in mind that Assange has already been suffering in horrid conditions over years of confinement in Great Britain. There is a limit to what people can take, and Assange may reach that limit if he is not freed soon.
Watch Napolitano’s video commentary here: