Early Monday morning, Politico reported that Wikileaks founder Julian Assange’s internet connection had been “cut” by a “state party.” This announcement was delivered via Twitter from other portions of the Wikileaks organization, which reassured its followers it had “activated the appropriate contingency plans.” This is assumed to mean that they believe they will still be able to release additional thousands of pages of hacked information, as promised, leading up to the election on November 8.
In recent days and weeks, Wikileaks has become an important player (whether or not legitimate) in the US presidential election, serving as the conduit for the public exposure of hacked political information. The majority of this information has been damaging to Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. Some of these revelations have included evidence of the Democratic National Committee, supposedly an impartial arbitrator of Democratic primaries, colluding with the Clinton team to rig the nomination in her favor. Additionally, indications of bias by mainstream media for the Democrats over the Republicans has also potentially been shown.
Although as yet unconfirmed, it is assumed that the United States is behind today’s attempt at silencing Wikileaks. This is based on recent statements by the Obama administration as well as statements by Vice President Joe Biden on Sunday’s Meet the Press regarding plans to strike back at alleged hackers attempting to influence the presidential election. The apparent justification for their counter-attack is that it is probable Russia has been instigating the actual hacks against American entities. It has been alleged that Russia then feeds that information to Wikileaks, who then makes it public.
Additionally, there have been several Democratic “talking points” coming out in recent days stating that there is arguably no way to even know if any hacked Wikileaks’ information is real, or if it is simply “fabricated” to benefit the Republicans. This fabrication of damaging information spliced into real information is apparently a confirmed pattern Russian hacks use to manipulate populations.
If it turns out that the United States government was behind the shut down of Wikileaks, whether ultimately successful or not, it raises yet another sad, interesting problem for the American voter: who do you vote for when both the Republicans and Democrats are now trying to rig the election in their favor?
A US based counter-attack on Wikileaks almost assuredly insinuates there is evidence the Russians are behind the hacks. It also emphatically does nothing but to bolster the incumbent party’s (the Democrats’) chance of winning the election and keeping power. Certainly, if the Democratic administration can shut Wikileaks down, it will stop any potential (false) disinformation coming forth against them from an antagonistic state power (Russia). However, it will probably also happen to stop any further real leaks of damaging information against the Democrats. This blatant attack on free speech, whether or not veiled in a guise of “protecting democracy” from outside forces, seems like an excellent reason to not vote for the Democrats to stay in power.
Except, why are the Russians so determined to have Donald Trump win? Do we really think that another world power like Russia would risk raising tensions with a superpower in the nuclear age over the fact that they just like Donald Trump’s hairdo more than Hillary’s? As surely as stopping the Wikileak dumps favors the Democrats, if the hacks continue, they favor the Republicans. This indicates, by any common sense, that there is probably some beneficial relationship for both Trump and Vladimir Putin if Trump wins.
So who, American voter, do you want to win the election… the US Government that is being exposed more and more as using corruption to keep its cronies in power, or the Russian-backed wild man determined to burn it all down? Don’t worry, in both scenarios, only the Constitution and your Bill of Rights is all that really gets damaged, so maybe if you insist on supporting the two-party system, it really doesn’t matter which one you pick.