Book Launch: “In Defense of Julian Assange”
21 November 2019
Today OR Books publishes “In Defense of Julian Assange,” a new essay compilation on the persecution and prosecution of the WikiLeaks founder and publisher.
Edited by author and historian Tariq Ali and civil rights attorney Margaret Kunstler, the book deals with Assange and WikiLeaks’ groundbreaking journalism and its impact, the fight to protect whistleblowers and the public’s right to know, and the threat the US indictment of Assange poses to the freedom of the press.
“In Defense of Julian Assange” features contributions from leading activists, journalists, whistleblowers, and public figures from around the world, including Pamela Anderson, Noam Chomsky, Daniel Ellsberg, Chris Hedges, Margaret Kimberly, Matt Taibbi, Ai Wei Wei, and many more.
James C. Goodale, former Vice Chairman and General Counsel of The New York Times, said:
“This book shows why the Julian Assange case is one of the most important press freedom cases of this century or any other century.”
The United States has charged Assange with 17 counts under the Espionage Act and one count of conspiracy to commit a computer crime for the 2010 and 2011 publication of US war reports related to Afghanistan and Iraq and diplomatic cables, which exposed war crimes, previously unreported civilian deaths, and rampant corruption and abuse. These are the first charges ever brought under the Espionage Act, a 1917 law created for spies in World War I, against a journalist for publishing. If convicted, Assange could face at least 175 years in prison.
Julian Assange remains imprisoned in solitary confinement HMP Belmarsh, a maximum-security prison in London, at the behest of the United States as he awaits his extradition trial, scheduled to begin February 25th, 2020.
Barry J. Pollack, representing Assange in the United States, said,
“The unprecedented indictment of Julian Assange attempts to criminalize basic acts of journalism. The prosecution of a publisher for gathering news from sources, protecting the identity of those sources, and exposing truthful and newsworthy information is inconsistent with the First Amendment and poses a grave threat to journalists everywhere.”
Royalties from book sales go to the Courage Foundation,