America's war on leaks has gone way too far when journalists' emails spied upon

The exterior of the U.S. Department of Justice headquarters building in Washington. Photo: Reuters.


The exterior of the U.S. Department of Justice headquarters building in Washington. Photo: Reuters.

The U.S. government’s demands for the private emails of WikiLeaks staffers is outrageous, Trevor Timm writes in the Guardian. And not liking Julian Assange is a poor reason for any of us who care about press freedom to stay silent.

In the past four years, WikiLeaks has had their Twitter accounts secretly spied on, been forced to forfeit most of their funding after credit card companies unilaterally cut them off, had the FBI place an informant inside their news organization, watched their supporters hauled before a grand jury, and been the victim of the UK spy agency GCHQ hacking of their website and spying on their readers.

Now we’ve learned that, as The Guardian reported on Sunday, the Justice Department got a warrant in 2012 to seize the contents – plus the metadata on emails received, sent, drafted and deleted – of three WikiLeaks’ staffers personal Gmail accounts, which was inexplicably kept secret from them for almost two and a half years.

The warrant for WikiLeaks staffers’ email is likely connected to the grand jury the government convened in 2010 to investigate the WikiLeaks’ publication of leaked State Department cables, along with the Afghan and Iraq war logs.

"The war on leaks has gone way too far when journalists' emails are under surveillance" [Guardian: Comment is Free]

Previously on Boing Boing: "Google handed Wikileaks staffers' email over to US Government, didn't tell anyone"