Candice Miller for Congress, Michigan

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It is past time to Shut Down Wikileaks

by Candice Miller on December 3, 2010

by Rep. Candice Miller (R-MI)

This past Sunday, the founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, made good on his dangerous threat to our national security and the security of all of our allies by illegally releasing and illegally obtained classified State Department communications.

How did this illegal act against our nation happen? It appears that a trusted member of our armed forces, Army Private Bradley Manning, betrayed his country.  Private Manning served as an Intelligence Analyst at Contingency Operating Station Hammer in Iraq and his duties gave him access to some of the most sensitive and secret documents in our nation.

The protection of these secrets is a duty of every man and woman who is entrusted with a clearance to view them and to use the information to assist in the protection of our nation.  Today, Private Manning is charged with violating that oath he took to defend our nation and the constitution by admittedly giving thousands of highly classified documents and other information to the organization WikiLeaks.  And if he is convicted on all charges, he could be sentenced to 52 years in military prison and given a dishonorable discharge.

These penalties in my opinion are too lenient because it is my belief that in the modern world Private Manning has not just violated orders, he has committed treason.  He has aided and abetted our terrorist enemies and put the lives of countless of his brothers and sisters in uniform in jeopardy.

 There is absolutely no justification for the release of these documents, as the prime beneficiaries of this release are the al Qaeda terrorist organization and the terror supporting regime in Iran.  I fully support the effort of the incoming Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee Peter King (R-NY) who is putting forward the proposal that the WikiLeaks organization be declared a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the United States Government.

In addition, I strong urge Attorney General Eric Holder to act immediately on his plan to prosecute the founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, under the Espionage Act.  Mr. Assange has unnecessarily placed our nation and our military personnel in harm’s way and he needs to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

WikiLeaks’ actions make the world a more dangerous place and put the lives of innocent Americans and many of our courageous foreign allies at great risk.  We must not allow further release of additional national secrets and the Obama Administration must move swiftly to take decisive action against WikiLeaks and any person within our government who has aided or abetted their efforts to undermine our national security.

Julian Assange and WikiLeaks are criminals whose actions support terrorists and criminal regimes around the world.  It is now long past time for our government to shut WikiLeaks down.

Recently, Attorney General Holder held a press conference announcing that the federal government has shut down Web sites that were selling knock off handbags.  At that press conference he was peppered with questions about the government’s response to WikiLeaks.  The feeble action taken thus far is not enough.  I have a message for the Attorney General, WikiLeaks poses a far great threat to our nation than those who peddle fake purses.  Take action now to shut WikiLeaks down!

Shut them down to protect the vital secrets of our nation.  Shut them down to deny our terrorist enemies access to information that can be used to incite against the United States and put our brave men and women in uniform in danger.  Shut them down to stop their continued aid to terrorists and murderers

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