By: Kayhan Int’l Staff Writer
Freedom of the press, which includes the printed and electronic media, is a right of journalists, without interference from state authorities and guaranteed by constitutional protection. The United Nations 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights states: "Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference, and to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers.”
Yet despite, the US First Amendment ensuring this freedom of journalism and the right of journalists to cover facts and realities, Washington is violating its own constitution by demanding the extradition of the Founder of the famous website ‘WikiLeaks’, Australian investigative journalist, Julian Paul Hawkins, who goes by the pseudonym ‘Julian Assange’ and is currently languishing in a prison in Britain.
What are the US, Britain, and other western regimes, afraid of?
Their crimes against humanity, of course, and their bleak, black and bloody record of state terrorism to destabilize and dominate world countries.
Assange, who exposed the dirty secrets and wrongdoings of the western regimes, especially that of the US, faces trumped up charges that threaten the very independence of journalists and journalism.
The roguish regime of Donald Trump has levelled an 18-count indictment, charging him under the 1917 Espionage Act for his constitutional right to reveal to the American and the world people a trove of secret documents relating to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
The right of a journalist, committed to his profession and abiding by the universal principles of presentation of facts, realities and the plain truth, is to expose horrific crimes, especially by state actors, so that the powerful politicians who order them are brought to justice. This is the reason press freedom is considered important.
Assange, who was seized from the embassy of Ecuador in London, where he had sought asylum in 2012, did just that with full confidence of enlightening the world people with facts and how regimes indulging in crimes against humanity, try to conceal the manifest truth.
It should be recalled that in 2010, the British daily Guardian, as well as the New York Times and a few other corporate newspapers, had partnered WikiLeaks to publish the contents of thousands of confidential US diplomatic cables, known as Cablegate. That year, WikiLeaks released other confidential US government information as well, such as the Afghanistan War Logs, the Iraq War Logs, and the infamous "Collateral Murder” video.
The material exposed atrocities perpetrated by the US military, as well as other disgraceful acts—like US diplomats strategizing on how to undermine elected governments not liked by Washington, to spy on allies and to bully poor countries into paying wildly exorbitant prices for life-saving drugs.
Since investigative journalists expose the dirty and criminal activities of the US and pro-US regimes, they are either kidnapped and killed or imprisoned on trumped up charges.
It is time the free world and all those dedicated to journalism closed ranks to pressure the release of Assange and similar investigative journalists, or else, the US and its accomplices-in-crimes, such as Britain, the illegal Zionist entity, and Arab dictatorial regimes, would continue with gay abandon their indulgence in ‘yellow journalism’ by manipulating the press to publish lies and distort realities.
The plan is to distract attention from their acts of state terrorism, which include the genocide in Palestine, the war in Yemen, the false accusations against Iran, and the sabotaging of oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman by the CENTCOM terrorists.