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Donald Trump takes another shot at U. S. intelligence, promoting Julian Assange's version of events


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President-elect Donald Trump lodged another unprecedented assault on U. S. intelligence agencies Wednesday, promoting the credibility of WikiLeaks founder and editor Julian Assange at their expense.
Trump has been highly critical of the government’s assessment that Russia intervened in the November election, using WikiLeaks to release hacked Democratic emails.
On Twitter on Wednesday, Trump cited Assange’s assertions mocking the intelligence community’s conclusions that Russians were responsible for stealing the emails of top Hillary Clinton advisor John Podesta .
Assange gave an interview to Fox News host Sean Hannity, who has in the past called for trying him on espionage charges, echoing other Republicans and many in the intelligence community who say his airing of sensitive documents has put U. S. lives and strategic interests at risk. U. S. officials have said Assange is under criminal investigation.
Assange’s backers, including some on the far left, have praised him at times for scrutinizing U. S. actions abroad and in the war on terrorism.
Hannity, Trump’s biggest supporter in the media, has praised Assange since Trump began complaining that the conclusion about Russian meddling in the election was wrong. He flew to London to interview Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy, airing their conversation Tuesday. Assange has lived in the embassy for more than four years, fleeing sexual assault accusations in Sweden.
Trump also quoted Assange’s criticism of the media as dishonest, amplifying that critique in his own words.
The praise for Assange on Wednesday came less than a day after Trump ridiculed U. S. intelligence.

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