The DNC's Lawsuit Against WikiLeaks Is an Attack on the Freedom of the Press [pastemagazine.com]
It's a large world, filled with felonies big and misdemeanors small. And so I prefer to write long columns. But sometimes a short, sharp word is necessary. The Democratic Party is suing WikiLeaks and they shouldn't. As Glenn Greenwald wrote [theintercept.com] last week in The Intercept:
The Democratic National Committee filed a lawsuit this afternoon in a Manhattan federal court against the Russian government, the Trump campaign, and various individuals it alleges participated in the plot to hack its email servers and disseminate the contents as part of the 2016 election. The DNC also sued WikiLeaks for its role in publishing the hacked materials, though it does not allege that WikiLeaks participated in the hacking or even knew in advance about it; its sole role, according to the DNC's lawsuit, was publishing the hacked emails.
As Greenwald points out, the Dems' claim that "WikiLeaks is liable for damages it caused when it 'willfully and intentionally disclosed' the DNC's communications ... would mean that any media outlet that publishes misappropriated documents or emails (exactly what media outlets quite often do) could be sued by the entity or person about which they are reporting."
After the Manning releases in 2010, the Obama Justice Department wanted to sue WikiLeaks. However, they couldn't prove that anyone from WikiLeaks had actually stolen documents. They knew that suing WikiLeaks would have infringed on press freedom. Sue WikiLeaks, and you have to sue the Washington Post as well.
The DNC has no such qualms now.
Also at Al Jazeera [aljazeera.com].
See also: Why the DNC Is Fighting WikiLeaks and Not Wall Street [truthdig.com]