“If you go to history of the FBI, it has become effectively America’s political police. And the FBI demonstrated with taking down the former head of the CIA [David Petraeus in 2012] over classified information given to his mistress that almost no one was untouchable. The FBI is always trying to demonstrate that. ‘No one can resist us,’” Assange told the Australian journalist during the 25-minute interview.
“But Hillary Clinton very conspicuously resisted the FBI’s investigation. So, there is anger within the FBI because it made the FBI look weak.”
FBI director James B. Comey threw a spanner into the presidential race that threatened to become a Clinton procession last week, when he claimed that the agency had potentially obtained new information pertaining to Clinton’s use of a personal email server, set up shortly after she became Secretary of State in 2009, when they obtained the laptop of Anthony Weiner, the ex-husband of close Clinton aide Huma Abedin. Weiner was being investigated for an unrelated sexting offense.
Clinton has categorically denied mishandling classified information by using a vulnerable personal email address for State Department business. Fox News has alleged that the FBI has obtained new evidence from Weiner’s computer that shows that Clinton was “very likely hacked.”
The right-wing network has also claimed that there is a “high priority” FBI investigation into whether favors were exchanged by Clinton for donations to her husband’s foundation, though other media have refuted these claims, saying that an earlier investigation into the Clinton Foundation, which cleared the power couple, remained closed.
Assange, whose WikiLeaks website has over the last ten months released three sizable batches of emails, relating to Clinton herself, the Democratic National Committee, and her campaign manager John Podesta, said the FBI has cause to investigate Clinton.
“There’s a thread that runs through all of these emails. There is quite a lot of “pay-to-play,” as they call it – taking… giving access in exchange for money for many individual states, individuals and corporations. Combined with the cover-up of Hillary Clinton’s emails while she was Secretary of State this has led to an environment where the pressure on the FBI [to investigate] increases,” Assange said.
Regardless of whether Clinton ever faces charges, Assange asserted that Clinton was beholden to corporate and political entities that have been hidden from the electorate during the race to the White House.
“She’s this centralizing cog, so that you’ve got a lot of different gears in operation from the big banks like Goldman Sachs, and major elements of Wall Street, and intelligence, and people in the State Department, and the Saudis, and so on. She’s is the, if you like, the centralizer that interconnects all these different cogs. She’s smooth central representation of all that, and all that is more or less what is in power now in the United States,” stated Assange, who said that the leaked emails presented a clear picture of this nexus of influences.
Assange also insisted that despite his image, projecting hope and change, President Barack Obama became “very close to banking interests” during his own initial White House campaign in 2008.
“In fact, one of the most significant Podesta emails that we released was about how the Obama cabinet was formed – and half the [first] Obama cabinet was basically nominated by a representative from Citibank. It is quite amazing,” Assange said.
‘Libya was Hillary’s war’
According to Assange, Clinton’s emails reveal a masterplan, hatched months before the West’s intervention in Libya in March 2011, to make it the signature conflict of her tenure as secretary of state, and a podium from which to realize her presidential dreams.
“Libya more than anyone else’s war was Hillary Clinton’s war. Barack Obama initially opposed it. Who was the person who was championing it? Hillary Clinton. That’s documented throughout her emails,” Assange said.
“There’s more than 1,700 emails out of the 33,000 of Hillary Clinton’s emails we published just about Libya. It’s not about that Libya has cheap oil. She perceived the removal of Gaddafi and the overthrow of the Libyan state something that she would use to run in the general election for president. So late 2011, there’s an internal document called the “Libya Tick Tock” that is produced for Hillary Clinton, and it’s all the… it’s a chronological description of how Hillary Clinton was the central figure in the destruction of the Libyan state.”
But the scheme not only failed on a personal level, after Clinton was largely blamed for allowing a jihadist ransacking of a US compound in Benghazi in 2012, but also continues to haunt the country, which remains in a state of civil war, and Europe.
“As a result, there [have been] around 40,000 deaths within Libya. Jihadists moved in, ISIS moved in. That led to the European refugee and migrant crisis, because not only did you have people fleeing Libya, people then fleeing Syria, destabilization of other African countries as a result of arms flows,” said Assange.
Over the course of the interview, Assange also expounded on his views on Donald Trump, the relationship between WikiLeaks and Russia, and his plan to leave the Ecuadorian embassy, where he has lived as a legal fugitive since 2012.