Hillary Clinton Wanted to Drone Strike Julian Assange-Unproven!
Summary of eRumor:
In a State Department meeting about WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, Hillary Clinton reportedly asked, “Can’t we just drone this guy.”
Reports that Hillary Clinton asked, “Can’t we just drone this guy?”, during a State Department meeting about WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange can’t be verified because they use unnamed sources.
These rumors started with a report that appeared at True Pundit under the headline, “Under Intense Pressure to Silence WikiLeaks, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Proposed Drone Strike on Julian Assange.”
The report cited unnamed “State Department sources” who recounted a 2010 meeting about WikiLeak’s pending release of cables between U.S. and foreign leaders, which later became known as “CableGate”:
Clinton’s State Department was getting pressure from President Obama and his White House inner circle, as well as heads of state internationally, to try and cutoff Assange’s delivery of the cables and if that effort failed, then to forge a strategy to minimize the administration’s public embarrassment over the contents of the cables. Hence, Clinton’s early morning November meeting of State’s top brass who floated various proposals to stop, slow or spin the Wikileaks contamination. That is when a frustrated Clinton, sources said, at some point blurted out a controversial query.
“Can’t we just drone this guy?” Clinton openly inquired, offering a simple remedy to silence Assange and smother Wikileaks via a planned military drone strike, according to State Department sources. The statement drew laughter from the room which quickly died off when the Secretary kept talking in a terse manner, sources said. Clinton said Assange, after all, was a relatively soft target, “walking around” freely and thumbing his nose without any fear of reprisals from the United States. Clinton was upset about Assange’s previous 2010 records releases, divulging secret U.S. documents about the war in Afghanistan in July and the war in Iraq just a month earlier in October, sources said. At that time in 2010, Assange was relatively free and not living cloistered in in the embassy of Ecuador in London. Prior to 2010, Assange focused Wikileaks’ efforts on countries outside the United States but now under Clinton and Obama, Assange was hammering America with an unparalleled third sweeping Wikileaks document dump in five months. Clinton was fuming, sources said, as each State Department cable dispatched during the Obama administration was signed by her.
The first problem in proving whether or not Clinton seriously wanted to assassinate Assange is that the report cites unnamed sources that can’t be verified. The second problem is that there’s no way to tell if Clinton was making an off-color joke, which was possible given that the report said her remark stirred laughter.
Clinton spokesperson Robbie Mook didn’t confirm or deny that Clinton made the remarks during an interview that aired on FOX 5 DC. When asked about whether or not Clinton actually made the remarks, Mook replied, “I’m reticent to comment on anything that the Wikileaks people have said. They’ve made a lot of accusations in the past.”
The True Pundit report also raised questions about an email that Anne-Marie Slaughter sent to Human Abedin on November 23, 2010, with the subject line “an SP memo on possible legal and nonlegal strategies re wikileaks.” The body of the email doesn’t outline what “nonlegal strategies” were being considered, and a memo that was attached to the email has yet to be recovered, True Pundit reports.
And it’s undoubtedly true that former Hillary Clinton strategist Bob Beckel called for Assange to be assassinated during a live appearance on FOX Business — but it’s not clear if Clinton shares his beliefs:
The best way to deal with this is pretty simple. We have special ops forces. I mean, a dead guy can’t leak stuff. This guy is a traitor, he’s treasonous, and he has broken every law of the United States. The guy ought to be, and I’m not for the death penalty, so, if I’m not for the death penalty, one way to do it is to illegally shoot the son of a bitch.
Still, given that True Pundit used unnamed sources, and the context for Clinton’s comments about Assange isn’t clear even if she did say them, we have no choice but to call this one “unproven.”