Last updated on July 28th, 2019
On Thursday, President Donald Trump made clear that he has no information, when asked about Julian Assange and the criminal case against him. The President’s silence about the case against WikiLeaks founder raises several speculations, citing that it can prove to be a political threat for Trump.
The President, who once celebrated Assange’s action of leaking Hillary Clinton emails, now dreads of his arrival in the US. It is being believed that his presence in America would allow him to question the special counsel Robert Mueller’s latest report, which reportedly concluded Trump not guilty of collusion with Russia in 2016 presidential elections.
Julian Assange, a person of interest in the Mueller investigation, was taken into custody from Ecuadorian embassy in London. He has been charged on Chelsea Manning’s leaks dating back to 2010.
National Security Defense Attorney Mark Zaid said that he believes Assange will “graymail” the US to make sure he does not get convicted. He can do it either in the open or by lawful recordings.
He said, “I would expect, from a legal strategy standpoint, that Assange will do anything he can to persuade the U.S. government to drop these charges. That would be to pursue a line of information that would actually link the president to WikiLeaks.”
Zaid also stated that although his claim is not necessarily true, it is possible for the WikiLeaks founder to easily lie, as he will be experiencing a long fight for handover.
He further added, “It could be completely true that Assange had nothing to do with Russia and the 2016 election but he pursues a legal strategy along the lines that he did, for the purposes of trying to graymail the government into dropping the charges. It would not only not surprise me, I would expect it.”
Citing the law of 1980, Zaid said that Julian Assange can ask for information from Mueller’s investigation. Besides, he can also claim of being charged for 2016 Presidential Elections instead of a decade old case.
In February, Michael Cohen, previous attorney of Trump, informed Congress that the President had information about Roger Stone’s link with Julian Assange and that he will be leaking Hilary Clinton’s email.
He further added that in July 2016, Stone informed Trump that he was talking with Julian Assange, who claimed that “within a couple days, there would be a massive dump of emails that would damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign”. In response Trump said, “Wouldn’t that be great.”
While Trump has denied having any information on Julian Assange or the criminal case against him, author Jerome Corsi said, “My read on Assange, and I’ve studied him for the past 12 years now, is Assange tells the truth, just like I would. He won’t lie to save himself. I’ve been pretty accurate predicting Assange so far.”
While “graymail” is possible, the whistleblower defense attorney Jesselyn Radack said that she does not believe that Assange holds any information that could be a threat to Trump. She has previously represented NSA whistleblowers Edward Snowden and Thomas Drake as well.
Radack further added, “I have to imagine that WikiLeaks has some sort of dead man’s switch in place for a circumstance like this. But if they have kompromat on Trump, I think it would have already come out.”
While arrival of Julian Assange in the United States is believed to create problems for Trump, some say that it might not do any harm to the President. However, the possibility of things turning bad for Trump are still higher, as Assange could become a source for clearing the air on alleged relations between the President and the Russian government.
As of now, the conflict over the handover of Julian Assange still continues, where the United Kingdom’s Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn is against his deportation to the US.