Claim: Julian Assange offered pardon to "Lie" for Trump

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Lots of high stakes spin here, making things hard to parse. The RawStory headline is:

https://www.rawstory.com/2020/02/ju...on-if-he-would-lie-about-russias-dnc-hacking/
This seems based on this Tweet:
Source: https://twitter.com/jamesdoleman/status/1230164682700443648

And this one:
Source: https://twitter.com/benlewismedia/status/1230172453185429505

Of course, if you are on the side that claims that Russia actually had nothing to do with the 2016 leak, then this isn't encouraging him to lie, it's encouraging him to tell the truth. It's unclear right now how Assange characterizes the truthiness of what he was asked to say.

It might even simply be a reference to the same story back in 2017
https://www.cnbc.com/2017/09/15/roh...rump-deal-on-absolving-wikileaks-assange.html
So what's new? Assange (or his lawyer) referencing this deal in court. Will this actually show that the people asking him this were asking him to lie? Or asking him to confirm what they thought (at the time) was true?

Trump supporters, of course, will read this as the latter. But, as extensively documented in the Muller report, based on work by the US intelligence services, the Russians DID orchestrate the DNC leak.
https://www.justice.gov/storage/report.pdf
Assange has previously pushed (but not explicitly laid out) the idea that the leak actually came from DNC staffer Seth Rich, who later died in what Law Enforcement described as a "botched robbery".
 
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deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
Will this actually show that the people asking him this were asking him to lie? Or asking him to confirm what they thought (at the time) was true?
didn't Assange always say he did not get those documents from the Russians?

your 2017 story doesn't say they want him to lie. it says they want him to produce evidence (although why anyone cares if Russia hacked the dnc or not, im not sure).

edit add:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Democratic_National_Committee_email_leak
 
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deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
oh this is his extradition hearing.
https://www.businessinsider.com/julian-assange-trial-offered-pardon-deny-russia-2016-dnc-hack-2020-2

but the U.S. charges have to do with Chelsea Manning, which was under Obamas watch I think. we probably need a hearing transcript because what the DNC hack has to do with his extradition being "political" isn't really making sense to me.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
we probably need a hearing transcript because what the DNC hack has to do with his extradition being "political" isn't really making sense to me.
I suspect Assange's lawyers are trying to make the case that he will not get a fair trial in the US, and will use this supposed pardon offer as evidence of extrajudicial intent or some sort. Since he wasn't pardoned, then he could make the case that the Trump admin would want to punish him for not taking their deal.

Regardless, it's causing a huge amount of speculation and theories.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Swift denials from the White House:
https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-51566470
Some background on Trump and Rohrabacher:
https://www.cnn.com/2017/04/04/politics/donald-trump-dana-rohrabacher-putin/index.html
So "barely knows" does not entirely ring true. Of course, a President meets with a lot of people.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
More from back in 2017:
https://www.cnn.com/2017/08/17/politics/dana-rohrabacher-julian-assange-wikileaks/index.html
It seems like the current claim is probably based on Rohrabacher's actions, but framed as if Rohrabacher represented the US government (or Trump).

Since it was ruled admissible, then I'd imagine clarification is forthcoming.
 

deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
your link also says
the wiki thing has Assange saying it was not the Russians in January of 2017.
the Mueller report came out April 2019.

Mr Fitzgerald said a statement from Assange's lawyer Jennifer Robinson shows "Mr Rohrabacher going to see Mr Assange and saying, on instructions from the president, he was offering a pardon or some other way out, if Mr Assange... said Russia had nothing to do with the DNC leaks."
and what is this dot dot dot... ? so far i cant find Jennifer's statement in full, all the articles have the dot dot dot. weird place for a dot dot dot.
 

deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
but framed as if Rohrabacher represented the US government (or Trump).
well it is possible when he meant with Trump in April 2017 he mentioned Assange and his claim that Russia didn't do it and Trump said something like "He's a good guy. It would be great if he would prove Russia didn't do the hack"

(edit add: regarding my Trump paraphrase speculation: only because remember the hack was part of everyone saying Trump was colluding with Russia, so at least if Assange gave proof that would be one accusation against Trump taken off the table)

I'm not saying Stefanie Grisham is lying. maybe she asked Trump and he just has no recollection. That was what his 3rd month in office. for a guy with no political experience.. he probably had a lot on his plate and wouldn't remember most conversations or whose face goes with which conversation. Although, Grisham should use language more like "he has no recollection of any conversation like that"
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
and what is this dot dot dot... ? so far i cant find Jennifer's statement in full, all the articles have the dot dot dot. weird place for a dot dot dot.
It's not her statement. The quote appears to be Assange’s barrister, Edward Fitzgerald QC, describing a statement from Assange’s lawyer Jennifer Robinson. If it's a court transcript, then it might just be a pause or repeated words, or "your honour", or even "*coughs* excuse me"
 

deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
:) a "cough" doesn't bode well in the truth department in that sentence placement either :)

note: i'm not arguing the claim, just the insinuation of the claim as written. but ive already shown the timeline, which shows no "lying" in real time. Assange was claiming that prior to meeting the congressman in august.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Assange was claiming that prior to meeting the congressman in august.
If there was any offered quid-pro-quo, I'd suspect it would be based on Assange supplying evidence, or at least more details, like the "real" source of the leak.
 

deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
the original story (2017) said "a pardon or "something like that"". so I started thinking but to be pardoned he'd have to get convicted and be IN America. that does not seem to be the case.

unfortunately different wiki entries on pardons give different info on "pardon" rules. (I haven't attempted to try and read the actual Article Two of the Constitution).

but contrary to some entries which say otherwise, it does seem you can pardon before a conviction
https://abalegalfactcheck.com/articles/pardons.html

but so far everything im finding says if you accept a pardon then it is also an admission of guilt.

Not that Trump would have known this having only been president a few months. I guess Assange might be ok with that... being guilty but pardoned. it's interesting (to me).
 

Bruno D.

Senior Member
... (although why anyone cares if Russia hacked the dnc or not, im not sure).
Not to deviate the discussion and go off-topic, but if a country interferes with a US election (hacking DNC emails, cherry-picking the worst of them and releasing them close to the election), they need to be sanctioned - so, yes, everyone in US should care if Russia hacked DNC or if whateverkistan hacked RNC. A state-sponsored operation, if proven, needs to be punished, therefore, needs to be investigated.
 

deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
Not to deviate the discussion and go off-topic, but if a country interferes with a US election (hacking DNC emails, cherry-picking the worst of them and releasing them close to the election), they need to be sanctioned - so, yes, everyone in US should care if Russia hacked DNC or if whateverkistan hacked RNC. A state-sponsored operation, if proven, needs to be punished, therefore, needs to be investigated.
I meant it the opposite way you seem to think. the topic (and my specific wording) is that Trump allegedly tried to bribe Assange into lying about the source.

I get they were trying to tie the hack to Trump too as a big part of his "colluding with Russia", but since he knew (as far as Mueller could determine) that he didn't collude about the hack, then it's kinda silly to try to take Russia out of the hack equation. If the hack was just some random Ukrainian or Republican, that would be harder to prove Trump didn't collude with them because they wouldn't know who EXACTLY they were supposed to see if Trump colluded with. They'd have to investigate literally everyone Trump ever had contact with, vs. just looking for ties to Trump and Russians. I'm sure Trump met with a lot more Republicans than Russians.

(and Comey said they did try to hack the RNC but we had better server security. The only bad thing that came out was that they were biased against Bernie, it's not really Russia's fault the DNC were dumb enough to put that in writing. :) )
 
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Agent K

Active Member
"Rohrabacher confirms he offered Trump pardon to Assange for proof Russia didn't hack DNC email"
https://news.yahoo.com/rohrabacher-...of-russia-didnt-hack-dnc-email-131438007.html
 

Agent K

Active Member
If there was any offered quid-pro-quo, I'd suspect it would be based on Assange supplying evidence, or at least more details, like the "real" source of the leak.
Rohrabacher told the WSJ in 2017, “He would get nothing, obviously, if what he gave us was not proof.”
 

deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
"Rohrabacher confirms he offered Trump pardon to Assange for proof Russia didn't hack DNC email"
https://news.yahoo.com/rohrabacher-...of-russia-didnt-hack-dnc-email-131438007.html
There are also media sources of Rohrabacher saying similar stuff back in 2017. one ex for this Washington Post article
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/poli...-we-know-about-it/ar-BB10ayp1?ocid=spartanntp
 

deirdre

Moderator
Staff member
It's not her statement. The quote appears to be Assange’s barrister, Edward Fitzgerald QC, describing a statement from Assange’s lawyer Jennifer Robinson. If it's a court transcript, then it might just be a pause or repeated words, or "your honour", or even "*coughs* excuse me"
several news are filling in the dots as "played ball".

https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/a...-would-trump-offer-a-pardon-to-julian-assange

https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/president-trump-offered-assange-pardon-20200220-p542hl.html
 

BombDr

Senior Member
This story is interesting as each party in it has a different reason to lie, and no reason to tell the truth.

Assange wants as many strategic level headlines as this adds to his narrative of 'deep state dark forces' etc as has already pointed out, to bolster his lack of fair trial argument. As an aside, 'lack of fair trial' has never worked in a US extradition case in the UK. Julian is also quite happy to go on RT.

Trump always lies, but really needs someone to say that it wasn't Russia, and the Seth Rich distraction works well or in addition to his Ukrainian assertion.

Rohrabacher.... who knows? Hes made a lot of odd statements about Russia, and this was prior to his (failed) reelection, and seeing as unilateral privateer foreign policy missions from the US are something of a banality now, he may have gone rogue in order to impress Trump, without actually having a pardon to trade...
 
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