Wikileaks founder Julian Assange pretty much said that the shooting death of a Democratic National Committee staffer was a political hit, and also implied that the might have been the source of the leaked DNC emails. The leaked communications were released right before the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, which showed DNC staffers actively trying to find ways to derail the presidential campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders.
The staffer, Seth Conrad Rich, was killed after being shot multiple times on July 10 near 2100 block of Flagler Place NW in Washington D.C. He was killed around 4:30 a.m., and some could speculate that maybe this was a robbery gone wrong. The problem is that all of Rich’s belongings (watch, phone, and wallet) were still found on him—and Rich’s mother said that bruises were found on her son’s hands, face, and knees; signs that he may have fought for his life. It’s a tragic event that’s recently entered the world of conspiracy theories, concerning whether Rich was targeted for possibly being the source of the leak.
Assange appeared on the Dutch program Nieuwsuur where he heavily implied that Rich was murdered, and that he was indeed his source (via Mediaite):
“Whistleblowers go to significant efforts to get us material, and often very significant risks,” Assange said. “As a 27-year-old, works for the DNC, was shot in the back, murdered just a few weeks ago for unknown reasons as he was walking down the street in Washington.”
“That was just a robbery I believe, wasn’t it?” asked the host, referring to the death of DNC data analyst Seth Rich.
“No,”Assange said. “There’s no finding.”
So what are you suggesting?” asked the host.
“I’m suggesting that our sources take risks,” Assange replied. But when asked point-blank whether Rich was a Wikileaks source, Assange refused to confirm or deny it.
The Wall Street Journal’s Heat Street has reportedly extensively on the Rich murder. Emily Zanotti noted that in terms of hard evidence, nothing has arisen since the murder, but it’s being connected to a string of mysterious deaths that will surely give conspiracy theorists more fuel to run on this story. Zanotti named a few of them:
Molly Macauley: The world-renowned “space economist” Molly Macauly was brutally murdered while walking her two dogs around the corner from her Baltimore home. The assailant attacked Macauley and left her for dead in upscale Roland Park —it was the first murder there since 1998. Police say they have no suspects and no leads, though Twitter is convinced that authorities downplayed the murder because it happened during the height of the #BlackLivesMatter-related unrest.
John Ashe: The former President of the UN General Assembly was awaiting trial on bribery charges when he turned up dead in June, apparently having crushed his own windpipe while lifting weights in his home. According to theories floating around on the web, Ashe was “scheduled to testify against the Clinton family” when he met his untimely end. There isn’t much independent confirmation for his testimony appointment, but Ashe was part of a scheme to funnel foreign money to the Democratic National Committee during the Clinton years.
Victor Thorne: Thorne was, himself, a conspiracy theorist (and a Holocaust denier), but his suicide from a self-inflicted gunshot wound drew attention from political media because his latest project – a forthcoming book – was reportedly a treasure trove of Hillary Clinton opposition research.
Joe Montano: An aide to Democratic Vice Presidential nominee Tim Kaine died of an apparent heart attack in his Falls Church, Va., home in late July. Montano, who was close to Kaine and had been employed by him for several years, was working for the Democratic National Committee when he died. Eagle-eyed conspiracy theorists immediately connected his death to Rich’s, even though Montano reportedly passed away from a medical event.
Shawn Lucas: Lucas, the lead attorney and process server in fraud case against the DNC filed by Bernie Sanders supporters, was found dead on his bathroom floor just this past week. Lucas’s death is strange, as he was reportedly in good health, according to his girlfriend. He had just appeared in a viral video showing the moment he surprised DNC officials with the fraud allegations. Theorists have linked his death to a massive “cover-up” on the part of the Clinton campaign, but they don’t offer much, aside from speculation, to tie the deaths together.
Writer Rachel Alexander recently wrote for us about Rich and other untimely deaths as well.
What we do know is that the DNC leaks were damaging, embarrassing, and gave Sanders supporters a renewed sense of hatred for the Democratic Party establishment. It confirmed what many have said about the DNC and the Clinton campaign being way too close to another. In one particular nasty email from DNC CRO Brad Marshall, he suggested that Sanders’ religious background should be used against him. Marshall apologized, but virtually the entire DNC leadership resigned after the convention.