On Monday, Julilan Assange told CNN that if Bradley Manning is convicted of "aiding the enemy," national security journalism in America is finished.
Assange argued that a guilty verdict would set a bad precedent for both whistle-blowers and journalists who publish their information. In the eyes of the state, the Manning's leaks turned both Manning and Assange into criminals once Assange published the documents on Wikileaks.
If Manning receives a guilty verdict today, he could spend the rest of his life in prison. Assange, on the other hand, is on the run. After the Bradley Manning leak and a few others, governments started going after Assange. He fled to the Ecuadorian Embassy in London last June and has remained there ever since. As soon as he steps out, British authorities plan to arrest Assange and possibly extradite him to America.
Assange is but one example of how the government retaliates once journalists publish damning classified documents. And how the freedom of press is not always so free.
"It will be the end of national security journalism in the United States," he said.