January 13, 2017

CONSPIRACY THEORY OF THE DAY: Assange offering an extradition deal?

Let’s start with the claim that Assange wants Chelsea Manning pardoned or given clemency and released in exchange for his surrender to authorities in the United States. Isn’t it odd that he’s bringing this up only days after the White House floated a trial balloon suggesting that Manning might be in line for just such a favor in the next few days? For the complete background on that story and its possible implications, read Ed Morrissey’s analysis from Wednesday. Obama ostensibly has political reasons to do it – i.e. tossing a huge bone to the LGBT community on his way out the door – but he also has a serious beef with Wikileaks in general over all of the leaked email brouhaha and Manning is irreversibly tied to Assange. But if Manning were already in line for possible release, what benefit accrues to Assange in exchange for giving himself up?

Unless, of course, this was part of a prepackaged deal. We all found it shocking that Obama would even be considering releasing Manning, LGBT benefits aside, but if there was a possible deal with Assange in the works behind the scenes, was this the reason for the trial balloon? And if so, was Assange worried that the deal was going sour, leading to his decision to blast out the tweet to try to move things along?

Read the whole thing, and remember that anything is possible in the Mad Duck’s final days.

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