Sunday, December 5, 2010

First They Came . . . for Julian Assange

"The first serious infowar is now engaged. The field of battle is WikiLeaks. You are the troops."

            The world is drowning in vast amounts of misinformation.  The very people who we rely on to give us the facts are skewing them.  What *is* going on?  Who can we trust?  What information is available?  We cannot trust the government any longer (not that anyone could…); we cannot trust big business.  We cannot trust CNN, Fox, Wall Street Journal, New York Post . . .  We cannot even trust publishing companies and distributors-who have attempted to silence the truth, information for the sake of good pr-- appearances merely.

            Then there is WikiLeaks.  WikiLeaks is a revolution in journalism; a class separate from what most news mediums are busy doing.  It goes to the heart of journalism, showing the truth of what is going on.  It is a radical method of accountability:  bringing to light suppressed and censored injustices.  No matter who the truth may damage along the way.  Yes, sometimes the truth is painful.  Rise up.  Truth or bust. 

            Look at the things WikiLeaks has shared with the world.  These things would have in all likelihood remained unnoticed, never to be exposed.  Yet, they should be seen.  We should know, and there should be accountability.

This if from Ciaran’s blog-Ruthless Truth on the Blog List:
Wikileaks is basically a kind of anonymous drop box.  If you see something corrupt happening, you can post documents here anonymously.

WikiLeaks has been involved in the publication of material documenting extrajudicial killings in Kenya.

A report of toxic waste dumping on the African coast by the British company Transfigura that killed hundreds of people (a report they had successfully blocked publication of in the British media). 

Church of Scientology manuals detailing their 'advanced techniques' of 'personal growth'. 

Guantanamo Bay procedures detailing savage and inhumane treatment.

And the July 12, 2007 Baghdad airstrike video, where American helicopter pilots laughed and crowed as they murdered a group of innocent people - including two Reuters journalists - because they had decided that the cameras the journalists carried were rocket launchers.

WikiLeaks is an incredible force for transparency and good. 

Julian Assange, the founder and editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks, has been accused of rape. 

These accusations surfaced one week after a previous release of 90 000 documents on Wikileaks which demonstrated multiple instances of the military cover-ups of murders and torture in Iraq and Afghanistan.

He has no criminal history of violence of which anyone is aware, or indeed any criminal history at all, apart from some childhood charges for computer hacking in his homeland of Australia, of which the Australian prosecutors themselves said "there is just no evidence that there was anything other than sort of intelligent inquisitiveness and the pleasure of being able to—what's the expression—surf through these various computers"

One of two women involved [involved as in she's one of Assange's alleged rape victims] told Aftonbladet in an interview published today that she had never intended Assange to be charged with rape. She was quoted as saying: "It is quite wrong that we were afraid of him. He is not violent and I do not feel threatened by him."

Now get this.

Last week Wikileaks released 250,000 diplomatic cables from the US State Department's diplomatic office.

A quarter of a million.

Among the delightful pieces of information was proof that Britain has conspired to hide illegal weapons, banned by international law, on its own soil for America.

I'll say that again. 

Britain's politicians agreed to hide weapons banned by international law on British soil.

In the wake of the release of these documents, Interpol - the international police agency, released a Red Notice for Assange's arrest.

This is the highest possible level of alert that Interpol can put out on a person.

Let's just read that quote from one of his 'victims' again: 

One of two women involved [involved as in she's one of Assange's alleged rape victims] told Aftonbladet in an interview published today that she had never intended Assange to be charged with rape. She was quoted as saying: "It is quite wrong that we were afraid of him. He is not violent and I do not feel threatened by him."

This is the crime for which INTERPOL has released a RED NOTICE on this man.

An Interpol Red Notice, just after he releases 250 000 documents exposing illegal activity in the US and UK governments.


This is an absolute disgrace.

But it gets worse.  All of a sudden, major companies that all of us use start joining in the hunt for Assange.  

Who the fuck are Paypal?  Who do they think they are?  So if someone goes up against the government, they can just pull the funding plug?

Is this democracy?

Then Amazon removes Wikileaks as a paying customer from its servers, saying that it doesn't work with people "engaged in illegal activities."

And yet it still lists Hillary Clinton's autobiography after the state department approved the hiding of illegal cluster munitions on British soil?  With British complicity?  No.

This has NOTHING to do with illegal activity.  This is businesses doing favors for politicians.



Because they are corrupt.  Corruption Wikileaks has the courage to expose.

Is this democracy?



No it's not.

It gets better.

Senior politicians, such as America's Sarah Palin and Canada's Tom Flanagan have openly called for his murder.

They have been met by howls of support from their adoring admirers in the general public, and the right wing media who feed millions of people lies they greedily swallow down.

Saturday Night Live, America's flagship comedy show, has decided to make a big joke about how 'sleazy' Assange is.

Everyone's jumping on board.

I've started a Facebook group - I started it yesterday, we've already got over 700 members.  Please help us publicize it.

It is called the Julian Assange Couchsurf 2010.

It's anyone who'll lend a couch to a man on the run, being hounded by the authorities over spurious accusations, hounded for an act of incredible courage and principle.  

This is a stunning and sickening assault by the political establishment on a man of incredible courage.  It is imperative that people stand together and demonstrate that not all of us are so easily used by a system that cares only about the degree to which we consume.

I was wondering how to end this piece; I wanted to make it good.  But I can't think of anything better to say than to share with you the words of Julian Assange.  When asked why he does what he does, this is how he responded:

"The whole universe or the structure that perceives it is a worthy opponent, but try as I may I can not escape the sound of suffering. 

Perhaps as an old man I will take great comfort in pottering around in a lab and gently talking to students in the summer evening and will accept suffering with insouciance. 

But not now; men in their prime, if they have convictions are tasked to act on them."



Julian Assange cannot be sacrificed on the piers of corporate greed and government corruption.  Do not be wishy-washy; do not bend with the wind.  This man falls, WikiLeaks crumbles, who remains standing unscathed?  Who will report corrupion and injustice?  

Do not be complicit--and yes if you sit back and watch this with calm removed interest, do nothing-you are being complicit.  Wake up, pay attention.  Have convictions and follow them.

 First They Came . . .  Martin Niemöller

They came first for the Communists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for me
and by that time no one was left to speak up.

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