Get Assange

The next time one is in the mood for some theatre, some high farce, there is no need to call the box offices of Shaftesbury Avenue or visit the scalpers in Swiss Cottage. Just swing by the Ecuadorean Embassy in Knightsbridge for a performance of the Metrpoloitan Police’s finest in a £5m per annum production called ‘Get Assange.’ This production is set to run and run and is hotly tipped to oust The Mousetrap from its number one spot in theatrical longevity. All we need now is the Met’s mounted division to perform dressage and we would have a scenario that Kafka could not envisage in his wildest dreams.

Katrin Axelsson and Lisa Longstaff of Women Against Rape wrote:

The allegations against Assange are a smokescreen behind which a number of governments are trying to clamp down on WikiLeaks for having audaciously revealed to the public their secret planning of wars and occupations with their attendant rape, murder and destruction. The authorities care so little about violence against women that they manipulate rape allegations at will. Assange has made it clear he is available for questioning by the Swedish authorities, in Britain or via Skype. Why are they refusing this essential step in their investigation? What are they afraid of?”

Claese Borgstrom, a Swedish political opportunist of the first ordure, was asked by a Swedish reporter why the case was proceeding when it had already been dismissed, citing one of the women as saying she had not been raped. He replied,

Ah, but she is not a lawyer.” 

Assange’s Australian barrister, James Catlin, responded:

This is a laughing stock… it’s as if they make it up as they go along.”

My exclusive perspective on Borgstrom, which has not featured in any of the copious features I have read, most notably by my journalistic hero John Pilger, is that his Social Democrats Party is receiving funds from the CIA to expedite the extradition of Assange. Is Marianne Ny, the Swedish prosecuting factotum introduced to the case by Borgstrom, also on the take, or is she only interested in political capital?

Assange has no case to answer. One of Assange’s consorts wanted him to have an HIV test to put her mind at ease apropos their unprotected sex. Which was perfectly reasonable. Borgstom and Ny have transposed unprotected sex into the realm of rape, despite the Stockholm Chief Prosecutor wasting no time in cancelling the arrest warrant, saying, “I don’t believe there is any reason to suspect that he has committed rape.” Four days later, she dismissed the rape investigation altogether, saying, “There is no suspicion of any crime whatsoever.”

The file was closed until Ny re-opened it in another jurisdiction, Gothenburg, despite Assange not being indicted on any formal charge. Ny gave permission for Assange to leave Sweden, stating that ‘he was free to go.’ This all changed when Borgstrom whispered in her ear that she could aspire to the State Prosecutor’s position if they both rode Assange to his CIA sunset. She duly issued a European Arrest Warrant, translated into five languages, which is normally the preserve of terrorists.

On the day Marianne Ny reactivated the case, the head of Sweden’s military intelligence service publicly denounced WikiLeaks in an article entitled “WikiLeaks is a threat to our soldiers.” Assange was informed that the Swedish intelligence service, SAP, had been told by its US counterparts that US-Sweden intelligence-sharing arrangements would be “cut off” if Sweden sheltered him. Assange would be extradited faster than one could say: Marianne Ny, Stockholm Chief Prosecutor.

There are signs that the Swedish public and legal community do not support prosecutor’s Marianne Ny’s intransigence. Once implacably hostile to Assange, the Swedish press has published headlines such as: “Go to London, for God’s sake.

Julian Assange has been receiving political asylum in Ecuador’s Embassy in London since 16 August 2012. The first three years of the Metroplitan ring of blue steel, which would use the European Arrest Warrant to extradite Assange to Sweden, has cost the public purse £11.1m. Pro rata this ridiculous politically motivated siege has cost the U.K. tax -payer in excess of £16m. Has the CIA issued the same threat to the British Security Services i.e. a mooted withdrawal of their intelligence sharing if Assange is not arrested and extradited?

Contrary to its reputation as a liberal bastion, Sweden has drawn so close to Washington that it has allowed secret CIA “renditions” – including the illegal deportation of refugees. The rendition and subsequent torture of two Egyptian political refugees in 2001 was condemned by the UN Committee against Torture, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch; the complicity and duplicity of the Swedish state are documented in successful civil litigation and WikiLeaks cables. In the summer of 2010, Assange had been in Sweden to talk about WikiLeaks revelations of the war in Afghanistan – in which Sweden had forces under US command.

Marianne Ny, has refused to come to London to question Assange about allegations of sexual misconduct in Stockholm in 2010 – even though Swedish law allows for it and the procedure is routine for Sweden and the UK. The documentary evidence of a threat to Assange’s life and freedom from the United States – should he leave the embassy – is overwhelming. On May 14 this year, US court files revealed that a “multi subject investigation” against Assange was “active and ongoing”.

Ny has never properly explained why she will not come to London, just as the Swedish authorities have never explained why they refuse to give Assange a guarantee that they will not extradite him on to the US under a secret arrangement agreed between Stockholm and Washington.

In December 2010, the Independent revealed that the two governments had discussed his onward extradition to the US before the European Arrest Warrant was issued.

One can state without fear of contradiction that Borgstrom and Ny are CIA stooges

The Americans are pursuing Assange because WikiLeaks exposed their epic crimes in Afghanistan and Iraq: the wholesale killing of tens of thousands of civilians, which they covered up; and their contempt for sovereignty and international law, as demonstrated vividly in their leaked diplomatic cables.” John Pilger 2014.

Anyone doubting the kind of US ruthlessness Assange can expect should remember the forcing down of the Bolivian president’s plane last year – wrongly believed to be carrying Edward Snowden.

According to documents released by Snowden, Assange is on a “Manhunt target list“. Washington’s bid to get him, say Australian diplomatic cables, is “unprecedented in scale.”

One of the women at the centre of Borgstrom and Ny opportunism, makes clear in her SMS messages that she did not want any charges brought against Assange;  “but the police were keen on getting a hold on him and “it was the police who made up the charges“. The Swedish police are pawns in the CIA’s game.

The Assange case finally reached the UK Supreme Court in May 2012. In a judgement that upheld the EAW – whose rigid demands had left the courts almost no room for manoeuvre – the judges found that European prosecutors could issue warrants with no judicial oversight. However, the Chief Justice, Lord Phillips, made one mistake. He applied the Vienna Convention on treaty interpretation, allowing for state practice to override the letter of the law. As Assange’s barrister, Dinah Rose QC, pointed out, this did not apply to the EAW. The Supreme Court only recognised this crucial error when it dealt with another appeal against the EAW in November last year. The Assange decision had been wrong, but it was too late to go back.

Gareth Peirce (don’t be thrown by her masculine forename) the renowned human rights lawyer who represents Assange in London, wrote to the then Australian foreign minister, Kevin Rudd:

Given the extent of the public discussion, frequently on the basis of entirely false assumptions. it is very hard to attempt to preserve for him any presumption of innocence. Mr. Assange has now hanging over him not one but two Damocles swords, of potential extradition to two different jurisdictions in turn for two different alleged crimes, neither of which are crimes in his own country, and that his personal safety has become at risk in circumstances that are highly political.

The editor of the Guardian, Alan Rusbridger, called the WikiLeaks disclosures, which his newspaper published, “one of the greatest journalistic scoops of the last 30 years“. It became part of his marketing plan to raise the newspaper’s cover price.

The draconian catch-all used against Assange could not happen now; charges would have to be brought and “questioning” would be insufficient grounds for extradition.

Ms Pierce asserted :”His case has been won lock, stock and barrel. These changes in the law mean that the UK now recognises as correct everything that was argued in his case. Yet he does not benefit. And the genuineness of Ecuador’s offer of sanctuary is not questioned by the UK or Sweden.”

On 18 March 2008, a war on WikiLeaks and Julian Assange was foretold in a secret Pentagon document prepared by the “Cyber Counterintelligence Assessments Branch”. It described a detailed plan to destroy the feeling of “trust” which is WikiLeaks’ “centre of gravity”. This would be achieved with threats of “exposure anf criminal prosecution”. Silencing and criminalising this rare source of independent journalism was the aim. Hell hath no fury like a Superpower scorned. Until recently Assange was deemed  to be a fugitive and rapist on the Pentagon’s official web site.

The 2011 Walkley Awards included a surprising ‘Most Outstanding Contribution to Journalism‘, to Julian Assange’s website WikiLeaks.

According to the citation, ‘by designing and constructing a means to encourage whistleblowers, WikiLeaks and its editor-in-chief Julian Assange took a brave, determined and independent stand for freedom of speech and transparency that has empowered people all over the world.”

In June, Assange also won in Britain the Martha Gellhorn Prize for ‘journalism at the cutting edge … that challenges secrecy and mendacity in public affairs … and raises ‘forgotten’ issues of public importance, without fear or favour, working against the grain of government spin’.

These two awards commending WikiLeaks as publicly empowering journalism may yet prove to be vital to Assange.

Cables recently obtained by the Sydney Morning Herald under Freedom of Information from the Australian Embassy in Washington confirm that since 2010 the US Justice Department has conducted an ‘active and vigorous inquiry into whether Assange can be charged under US law, most likely the 1917 Espionage Act‘.
Media reports that a secret grand jury has been convened in Virginia are described as ‘highly likely.

Assange’s mother appeals to Australians of good will to help defend her son from his clear and present danger: ‘Get informed. Inform a friend. Call talkback radio. Go and see your local Federal Member … and tell them you expect them to stick up for an Australian citizen …’

Meanwhile The Knightsbridge farce enters its fifth year. Can the mother of all parliaments not tell Sweden where to get off, or is the UK The 51st state of the U.S.?


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34 thoughts on “Get Assange”

  1. Everything changed on 9/11.

    We are at war.

    States need their secrets. States need to do what they do to protect all of us. The enemy do not play by laws and rules.

    I decided after 9/11 that the UK government, our allies the US govt, could do whatever they wanted without my complaints on human rights.

    Soldiers having their throats slit walking out London barracks, an RAF lad missing, bombs on busses and underground. Ditto Madrid, Paris, Berlin, Turkey, etc….

    Sweden is in the Baltic, close to Ukraine and Russia. It needs US and NATO protection. All allies are under US command on overseas Ops, including the UK. In the first Gulf war the 1st UK armoured division under General Sir Peter de la Billiere was under US General Stormin Norman Schwartzkopf. Who was under US General Colin Powell.

    I’m angered at the cost of circling Assange. That’s a disgrace. We shouldn’t be paying. The USA should pay.

    Any rights Assange has to illegally source top secret information and publish it, on moral not legal grounds, is subordinate to our States’ war on terror and need for secrecy.

    I also believe that if laws/ legal arguments are stacked in his favour and not the government’s then we should adjust them to suit our security agenda/ needs.

    I’m all for Guantanamo, water boarding and imprisonment without trial. People need to wake up to the critically dangerous world we live in.

    1. Forgive me if I demur but I’m vehemently opposed to Guantanamo and imprisonment without trial. As for water-boarding it must be used as a last resort and only when information is required on a live terrorist operation. I assume you favour rendition and would have Assange in an orange jumpsuit on Diego Garcia for the rest of his life?

      1. The rest of his short life. Yes.

        They maintain his intelligence leaks have aided our national enemies and killed and risked our soldiers and agents overseas. Has he not published names of CIA and MI6 operatives around the world rendering them useless and targets? His card is clearly marked by the CIA.

        It reminds me of a Private Eye front page many years ago: Two masked SAS men squatting all in black fatigues holding H&K MP5’s. One speak bubble “why did you shoot the terrorist 64 times?” Answer bubble from other SAS officer “I ran out of bullets”.

        I note a dodgy looking guy was shot three times through his windscreen two days ago in England. No doubt there will be shoot to kill allegations. Or are the public now rightly beyond such niceties? I reckon they’d vote for more of the same.

        Water boarding never killed anyone.

    2. I agree with you that we are at war and yet western governments invite our enemies to live amongst us without any basic screening. People who are intolerant of democracy, misogynistic, homophobic and who see anyone who has a different faith as being apostates who must be destroyed.

      In addition we arm these people in Syria, and have assisted them in destroying a secular regime. We arm Wahhabi warmongers who are in the process of destroying Yemen. For a country at war we have some very strange allies!

    3. Your ignorance is astounding. It’s hard to know where to start with such nonsense. There are 9/11s going on all over the world and there have been for years. Many added and abetted by the likes of the CIA. If there is any war going on it’s the powerful corporate classes who are waging propaganda and real wars against normal people all over the world. In these dangerous times Wikileaks is more vital than ever so that people can understand what is really going on in the world and hopefully develope less infantile opinions than yours.

      1. What would be your take on the mass rapes and sexual assaults that took place in the very centre of Cologne a year ago? Literally hundreds of criminal acts committed in a space little larger than a football field that were swept under the carpet and only FORCED into the public domain and acknowledgement by the MSM because the victims had no other recourse than the internet?

    4. JJ – absolutely wonderful article. The distrust evident in America now shows that its been a successful campaign. Even throwing his information into the presidential campaign dirty trick book. As for the poster I’m replying to – I absolutely could not disagree in stronger terms. Those with power need to be held in check and isolated incidences do not excuse responsibility to the electorate. I get the feeling that you’d have been cheering for Blair that Iraq needs a negligently equipped British presence and more power to Palpatine in the Galactic Senate.

    5. Human Rights are now subordinate to security

      I disagree. “Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one” Benjamin Franklin.

      Everything did change on 9/11. Our governments are now considerably more powerful than they were before. Detention without trial, mass surveillance, monitoring of internet activity etc. In the absence of proper oversight, scrutiny and accountability there is a real need for organisations like Wikileaks. Did you spend any time reading the leaked information? Do you agree with the criminal actions revealed in the leaks? Did you, maybe, not have the time and relied upon the broadcast and print media to frame the narrative for you?

      If you put your faith in government to provide this security you seek, I would suggest that you are going to be disappointed in the long run. The actions of our governments have made our world considerably less secure over the past 15 years. It’s a cycle of violence and surely madness to believe it will result in an outbreak of peace and security?

      Perhaps some perspective is necessary. Far more people die each year due to preventable diseases & malnutrition than acts of international terrorism. Do we declare war on poverty? Do we throw vast sums of money into fighting the appalling conditions that are forced upon too many people? Are these not critical dangers to huge amounts of the global population?

      Maybe you’re right and I need to wake up.

      1. Sorry JJ, I need a second bite.

        Having now had time to re-read and digest the content of your post “Human rights are now subordinate to security”, I must offer critique.

        If we are at war, as you claim, what are we fighting over? I’ll assume that you refer to the war on terror which could be described as a clash of ideologies. Western values versus a rather extreme sect of Islam. If so then how do we define western values?

        Imperialism? Capitalism? Consumerism? Individualism? Christianity? Democracy?

        Delete as necessary depending upon world view.

        I’ll take the least contentious of the above, democracy as a “pillar” of western values. Democracy has many versions but in my opinion the basic tenants would be government by the will of the majority, exercised regularly. Thus this creates a government which is accountable to the electorate for the decisions they take and laws they make. This would suggest that proper scrutiny of government policy and action is essential.

        “I decided after 9/11 that the UK government, our allies the US govt, could do whatever they wanted without my complaints on human rights.”

        I’m sorry but to me that sounds an awfully lot like you decided to defend western values by abandoning one of it’s core components. Without scrutiny there can be no democracy. If we all abandoned our beliefs as quickly and as meekly as you appear to have done then democracy really is doomed.

        I have made some assumptions in this post so please correct me if I am wrong, I welcome debate

  2. Enjoyed this immensely. The USA/CIA- if they aren’t undermining democratically elected governments, they’re drug running or training death squads. Why we are aligned to this semi dictatorship is an unhappy consequence of WW2. Scum of the highest order.

  3. 51st State? Surely 54 and counting, or am I confusing this with another storyline? Either way, valid dubiety. Each storyline of incredible interest to those wishing honesty and integrity from the powers that be in our world society. Another great read. Thanks.

  4. Well done you for raising this supremely important issue. It is almost as though the USA has reverted to the kinds of state behaviour known in Pre Revolution France whereby the absolute monarch sign a lettre de cachet ( think “The Man in the Iron Mask”) against annoying or inconvenient people. The herding of the MSM against anyone threatening the neocon consensus is breathtaking and includes the still ongoing campaign of vilification against the PEOTUS, Donald Trump, whose major “crime ” appears to be having given voice to the real economic concerns and interests of those sneered at as living in the “flyover states”. I hope Trump will have the best start to his presidency by calling off the poodles of Sweden and Britain and allowing Assange to resume his life.
    Thanks for another fantastic article.

  5. A Brilliant piece; informed, succinct, humane and correct.

    The principle enemy of freedom is the corporate control of so-called ‘democratic’ governments that now act entirely in their (corporate) interests.

    Assange’s ‘crime’ was to expose the mendacity and illegality at the heart of a system of government whose driving force is to throw billions of public dollars/pounds into the coffers of the military-industrial-security complex, whilst lying to their populations (as with Iraq) to justify the foreign wars that are the pretext for this trillion dollar death industry.

    John James, you surely are a force for good – and worthy in your own way of the accolades for the fearless hero Assange.

  6. Events in the US regarding inteligence are about to shake up their own country. As Cortes correctly states about Trump connecting with ordinary people concerned with their finances, it was inconceivable thet hed win for the establishment.
    Now I would not be surprised if the Russian propaganda does not kick off a legal challenge to his democratic victory.
    Fair play once again JJ for creating debate about a subject completely off topic to most readers 99% of the time.

  7. I disagree with your assertion that Assange is not guilty of anything.

    He is a criminal. He has criminally acquired top secret data. Criminally published it. Criminally endangered lives.

    He is arguably the most dangerous man in the world.

    1. Assange, by telling us what our governments have been doing,
      has been revealed as a champion of informed democracy.
      Therefore: ‘He is arguably the most dangerous man in the world’,
      according to Rodrigo Diaz de Vivar – or perhaps Charlton Heston.

    2. “The Americans are pursuing Assange because WikiLeaks exposed their epic crimes in Afghanistan and Iraq: the wholesale killing of tens of thousands of civilians, which they covered up; and their contempt for sovereignty and international law, as demonstrated vividly in their leaked diplomatic cables.” John Pilger 2014.

      Why are you in such a rush to criminalise Assange, and label him as being so dangerous, when his crime has been to expose state sponsored criminality?

      I suppose the bigger question is whether a criminal exposed by illegal means justifies the means? Which is the greater crime?

      In this particular drama, The US and their CIA are the gangsters, The UK and Sweden are the bent coppers they control and Julian Assange can be likened to Eliot Ness.

      I can’t help but draw mental parallels between Dave King, Paul Murray and James Traynor, with our own John James holed up in a safe house in the far east.

    3. You don’t have to go too far to find evidence that ‘top secret data’ is routinely used as a cover for protecting criminal activity undertaken by governments and in particular the US. Horman V Kissinger in 1977 (involvement in a Chilean coup by a junta)….. Linder V Calero in 1992 (a case detailing involvement in Nicaragua in which the US government refused to give evidence citing state secrets but which showed their support for the contras that murdered Benjamin Linder).

      Its the greed, lust for power and sheer ability to whitewash such misbehaviours that has lead to unaccountable people in charge of the mechanisms to do unconscionable things. The US is an example of raw capitalism taken to its ugly and twisted extremes where the acquisition of wealth takes preference over human rights, human dignity and human life. It’s size and influence sucks in what should be more principled partners – Britain and Sweden for example. If the law in those countries makes Assange a criminal for detailing their crimes then perhaps its those distortions of justice in those manufactured, masquerades of justice being done that are the problem. If they acted responsibly – who’d be interested in what Assange had to say?

  8. An excellent piece on a very disturbing topic. Since the evil axis of Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld stole the election of 2000, the United States has made a succession of disastrous decisions that have contributed greatly to the dire situation in which the world finds itself.

    It’s very clear from the extremism of your first contributor to this thread that 9/11 has accomplished exactly what it was designed to accomplish – unthinking and witless support

  9. Gosh it’s all muddled Liberals in here today. The types who take national safety and security for granted and think threats are all made up Fiction that go away if you close your eyes and have nice thoughts.

    Dr Ramesh, instead of intellectual debate, chooses to attack the Poster with “your ignorance is astounding” and “with such nonsense” and “infantile opinions as yours” lost the argument among Learned Posters when he made it personal.

    I’m surprised JJ allowed such a post. Surely Yellow card? PhD thought? I think not.

    Nameless corporations berated when in actual fact they provide employment, create products or services, create wealth, trade, investment opportunities, etc… and pay tax which underpins government spending.

    International corporations bring education, standards, training, behaviours and cultures to less advanced countries who benefit immensely from exposure to them.

    1. We read you Tony Bliar. You’re still a war criminal who deserves to spend the rest of your miserable life in prison.

      1. Hear Hear. Blair is a self-serving murderous war-criminal who engages in yoga with a view to fellating himself, when not sleeping with other men’s wives.

  10. Ha Ha the idoits over at SFM are in for another screwing Big Pink just released the latest statement,
    “Nobody is making any money from their efforts on SFM, so there is no financial imperative for us to change the message to attract numbers – and we won’t. ”
    Noble worlds but ones that seem strange given the timing of the launch of another empty your pockets day to fund his band and other commercial interests … and they call themselves intellects.

  11. Trump denying the Russian hacking and Wikileaks propaganda against Clinton contributed nothing to him winning is just like LNS’s no sporting advantage: utter bullshit. Shameless.

    1. The anti-Trump propaganda from just about every newspaper, radio and TV station in the entire western world (plus facebook and twitter) far outweighs anything the Russians might have done. Trump won because Clinton was even less popular than him. If the Democrats had chosen Bernie Sanders, he would now be POTUS-elect, not Trump. But the money-men did not want him, so they nobbled him. Well, ‘…they have their reward’. They sowed the wind. Now they (and perhaps we) shall reap the whirlwind.

      1. Not entirely buying that. Why was the case against her reopened a week before the vote because of somebody else’s hacked emails? I call that corruption. Trump didn’t even submit returns and still hasn’t. For all they know he’s going to be in office to enrich himself.

  12. It was Clinton’s foreign policy that dismembered Libya and wrecked Syria. She has inflicted far more damage than Trump has ever done. If she had won, she would have tried to finish the job in Syria. She is much the more dangerous of the two.

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