Julian Assange; Journey’s End?

Written By: - Date published: 10:14 am, July 22nd, 2018 - 165 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, accountability, capitalism, class war, Globalisation, Politics - Tags: , ,

A flurry of reports overnight suggest that right wing anti democracy activist Julian Assange is about to lose his asylum in the Equadorean embassy, London.

Ecuador’s President Lenin Moreno is in the UK capital to speak at a disability event. However it is speculated that he will also talk with the UK Government about bringing the accused rapist’s time at the embassy to an end.

Equador cut off Assange’s internet access a few months ago after he publicly backed the breakaway of Catalonia from the Spanish state. Spain and Equador have a close relationship and the Equadoreans felt Assange had breached the understanding that underpinned his asylum, which was that he would not do anything that would embarrass his hosts.

If Assange is forced to leave, he will almost certainly be immediately arrested for breaching his bail conditions. That might be a small comfort to his friends who put up his bail money when he was first accused of rape. Assange told them he would honour the bail conditions, then bolted anyway, costing his mates hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Running from justice in the UK will probably only get him a fine or perhaps a few months in jail, though the conviction will probably severely restrict his ability to travel in the future. Mind you, he’s pretty unlikely to be heading back to the Nordic countries any time soon, unless the Swedish authorities choose to revisit the rape charges and again request his extradition.

The paranoid anti state righties who back Assange will be in a froth this morning, but the hypocrisy of Assange’s shining a light on the inner workings of democratic governments while choosing to hide in the dark himself could not be sustained forever.

Assange is a weak man, a Weinstein of the web. If Wikileaks was ever going to be of use to the people, it should have gone after global capitalism. But no, it chose to align with the world’s mafia states, helping to weaken confidence in participatory democracy. Assange was, for a time, neo liberalism’s greatest asset.

Wikileaks has made the world less safe, less open. More able to be exploited.

That’s Julian Assange’s real legacy; he’s just a smug shill for capitalism.

 

 

165 comments on “Julian Assange; Journey’s End?”

  1. Booker 1

    Your characterization of Assange as neoliberalism’s greatest asset makes it sound like you’re from another planet. Barack Obama and Hilary Clinton, two of neoliberalism’s greatest proponents, would have happily seen him locked in Guantanamo for the rest of his life.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 1.1

      Agreed.

    • dukeofurl 1.2

      Guantanamo ? Thats a military prison
      Theres more likely to be Leavenworth and Florence penitentiary’s

    • Adrian Thornton 1.3

      @ Booker, Exactly, this post reads like sort of nutty Infowars carry on.

    • Ed 1.4

      A dreadful article.
      Shameful.

    • Tuppence Shrewsbury 1.5

      But TRP, the revisionsist par excellence, would never create fake news narrative to fit his own world view?

    • spikeyboy 1.6

      Absolutely agree. The man releases material that lets us see the real inside working of the neoliberal war machine and stands accused of being a neoliberal. Gobsmacked.

    • Liberal Realist 1.7

      100 % Agree.

      IMO Assange is one brave guy – he shines light on deep dark secrets airing governments very dirty laundry.

      Clinton is evidentially corrupt yet has thus far avoided prosecution for anything to do with the private email server, and it’s intent.

      Obama being a excellent orator, spun a narrative to get elected then promptly turned coat and continued on as every other US president before him. He also did murder on Tuesdays, specifically signing off on the droning kills lists – extrajudicial execution of ‘terrorists’ determined by a combination of human ‘intel’ and an algorithm.

      What Wikileaks does isn’t in practice any different to MSM. In fact I understand that Wikileaks set the precedent for anonymous submissions.

      • D\'Esterre 1.7.1

        Liberal Realist: “Assange is one brave guy….”

        I agree. This post simply astonished me; I conclude that Te Reo Putake has no idea of what’s going on in the world, or what’s been going on over the last many decades. A fortiori, the author evidently knows nothing about the Assange case, beyond what any of us can read in the msm.

        “…right wing anti democracy activist…”

        Good grief: this is an Alice-in-Wonderland sort of characterisation. Though it does remind me of an argument about Assange that I had with an Australian relative. It was clear that said relative had simply and uncritically bought the Oz msm line about him. From the tenor of that conversation, it was clear that Assange could expect no support from Oz, which has cravenly cast its lot in with Uncle Sam. Jump, vassal! How high, sir?

        “Ecuador’s President Lenin Moreno is in the UK capital…”

        Regarding Assange, the US is holding Ecuador over a barrel, threatening to withhold a loan if it doesn’t evict him from the embassy. Said president better hope that the US plays fair; it’s as likely as not to use some pretext to withhold the loan, even if Assange is shown the door.

  2. johnm 2

    The War on Assange Is a War on Press Freedom Chris hedges
    https://www.truthdig.com/articles/the-war-on-assange-is-a-war-on-press-freedom/

    ” The failure on the part of establishment media to defend Julian Assange, who has been trapped in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London since 2012, has been denied communication with the outside world since March and appears to be facing imminent expulsion and arrest, is astonishing. The extradition of the publisher—the maniacal goal of the U.S. government—would set a legal precedent that would criminalize any journalistic oversight or investigation of the corporate state. It would turn leaks and whistleblowing into treason. It would shroud in total secrecy the actions of the ruling global elites. If Assange is extradited to the United States and sentenced, The New York Times, The Washington Post and every other media organization, no matter how tepid their coverage of the corporate state, would be subject to the same draconian censorship. Under the precedent set, Donald Trump’s Supreme Court would enthusiastically uphold the arrest and imprisonment of any publisher, editor or reporter in the name of national security. ”

    ” Assange is a courageous and fearless publisher who is being persecuted for exposing the crimes of the corporate state and imperialism. His defense is the cutting edge of the fight against government suppression of our most important and fundamental democratic rights. The government of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull of Australia, where Assange was born, must be pressured to provide him with the protection to which he is entitled as a citizen. It must intercede to stop the illegal persecution of the journalist by the British, American and Ecuadorean governments. It must secure his safe return to Australia. If we fail to protect Assange, we fail to protect ourselves. “

    • johnm 2.1

      ” about bringing the accused rapist’s time at the embassy to an end. ”

      Assange has never I repeat never been accused of rape! The Swedes, also a U$ vassal state, that accepted renditions, have completely dropped their desire to talk to him about alleged “sexual misconduct”. The women involved have never accused him of rape and had been pressured to complain . The rape accusations are gutter smears such as you get in the UK’s Daily Mail. No substance at all.

      Assange rightly fears that the UK an American vassal state will willingly extradite him to the U$ where they have threatened his life and have prepared an indictment against him.

      The whole sting against him is almost certainly a CIA concoction to get him extradited to the U$

      • On 20 August 2010, a Stockholm duty prosecutor ordered the arrest of Julian Assange on the suspicion of rape and molestation, based on statements made by two alleged victims. So he has, quite literally, been accused of rape.

        His guilt or innocence is another matter.

        • johnm 2.1.1.1

          ” Julian Assange has been vindicated because the Swedish case against him was corrupt. The prosecutor, Marianne Ny, obstructed justice and should be prosecuted. Her obsession with Assange not only embarrassed her colleagues and the judiciary but exposed the Swedish state’s collusion with the United States in its crimes of war and “rendition”. John Pilger

          It’s obvious this has been a set up all along to get Assange.
          It may yet succeed if having to leave the Embassy he is extradited eventually by U$ toady state the U$K. The U$K is a war crime state along with the U$ for its invasion of Iraq and destruction of Libya. Look at the unending misery those two actions have caused. Wikileaks has exposed some of these Iraq atrocities committed by the Americans there. Remember that notorious prison they had? Abu Ghraib and the slaughter of civilians by a helicopter gun ship? That’s why they want to get him!

        • dukeofurl 2.1.1.2

          Guilt or Innocence ?

          Julian Assange: Sweden drops rape investigation[2017]
          https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-39973864

          I dont want to be fluffing his pillows but if charges are dropped , you are no longer ‘an accused’

          • te reo putake 2.1.1.2.1

            The investigation has been shelved, but can be re-opened. The reason for kicking it to touch is frustration of the process, primarily Assange doing a runner. He’s still ‘accused’ even if part of the legal process has stalled because the word has a wider meaning than just the judicial sense.

            • johnm 2.1.1.2.1.1

              Less than 24 hours later, the Stockholm Chief Prosecutor, Eva Finne, took over the investigation. She wasted 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.”

              ” He’s still ‘accused’ even if part of the legal process has stalled because the word has a wider meaning than just the judicial sense.”

              He is not still accused.Plse read above. It seems to me like the CIA you have it in for Assange.
              Of course NZ too is a vassal appendage of the U$ Is this why the standard has allowed these accusations!?

              • joe90

                Less than 24 hours later, the Stockholm Chief Prosecutor, Eva Finne, took over the investigation.

                Check the timeline.

                Thursday 2 September 2010 00:00

                […]

                The warrant was abruptly rescinded within 24 hours and last week Stockholm’s chief prosecutor Eva Finne said all charges against the 39-year-old would be dropped. But Ms Finne’s boss, Marianne Ny, Sweden’s chief prosecutor, has overruled that decision after new information reportedly came to light on Tuesday.

                https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/rape-investigation-into-wikileaks-chief-reopens-2068162.html

                May 19, 2017,

                […]

                Ny, the Swedish director of public prosecutions announced Friday that she was dropping the rape case because there is no prospect of bringing Assange to Sweden “in the foreseeable future” and it is “no longer proportionate” to maintain the European arrest warrant.

                She told a news conference in Stockholm that the investigation could be reopened if Assange returns to Sweden before the statute of limitations lapses in 2020.

                https://www.cbsnews.com/news/julian-assange-rape-investigation-dropped-sweden-prosecutor-marianne-ny/

                • johnm

                  ” Julian Assange has been vindicated because the Swedish case against him was corrupt. The prosecutor, Marianne Ny, obstructed justice and should be prosecuted. Her obsession with Assange not only embarrassed her colleagues and the judiciary but exposed the Swedish state’s collusion with the United States in its crimes of war and “rendition”.
                  This corrupt woman is just covering her ass!

        • johnm 2.1.1.3

          ” Julian Assange has been vindicated because the Swedish case against him was corrupt. The prosecutor, Marianne Ny, obstructed justice and should be prosecuted. Her obsession with Assange not only embarrassed her colleagues and the judiciary but exposed the Swedish state’s collusion with the United States in its crimes of war and “rendition”. John Pilger

          It’s obvious this has been a set up all along to get Assange.
          It may yet succeed if having to leave the Embassy he is extradited eventually by U$ toady state the U$K. The U$K is a war crime state along with the U$ for its invasion of Iraq and destruction of Libya. Look at the unending misery those two actions have caused. Wikileaks has exposed some of these Iraq atrocities committed by the Americans there. Remember that notorious prison they had? Abu Ghraib and the slaughter of civilians by a helicopter gun ship? That’s why they want to get him! http://johnpilger.com/articles/getting-julian-assange-the-untold-story

        • Gabby 2.1.1.4

          Yebbit, if I accused you of rape you’d be an accused rapist puty.

        • Chris 2.1.1.5

          The phrase “accused rapist” generally denotes a prosecution having commenced.

  3. marty mars 3

    Excellent – I expect some ‘paranoid anti state righties’ heads have popped as we speak. Lol this post is gonna be fun 😄

    • mauī 3.1

      Yep, they seem to be multiplying and coming from a left leaning background…

      • Adrian Thornton 3.1.1

        I guess they come a left leaning background because that is traditionally where most serious critical thinking leading to progressive action and change evolves from, unfortunately it seems many on the left have forsaken this fine tradition in their hysteria over Trump/Russia and this bullshit re; Assange.

        I never realized we had so many sheep on the Left, what a disappointment it has been to witness.

        • One Two 3.1.1.1

          Don’t use energy being disappointed, Adrian…

          It is entirely unsurprising…

          ‘Left leaning’ are human beings same as any others…warts and all…faults included…

          Paying more attention to events than other groups, generally speaking likely causes undetected imbalances in confirmation bias and ingrained prejudice…balance and objectivity should be the outcome of ‘more attention’ but that’s by no means a given…

          Objective assessments can become an impossible process as this article illustrates…

          Mapping back to the authors commenting history some time ago on the same subject explains the tone of this article…

          We’re all ‘flawed’…

          • Morrissey 3.1.1.1.1

            Some self-proclaimed “left leaning” New Zealanders have been especially brutal in their support for this black propaganda and ridicule…..

            Open mike 14/06/2013

            • marty mars 3.1.1.1.1.1

              2013 – some classic comments and commenters on that post – thanks morrie.

            • Adrian Thornton 3.1.1.1.1.2

              @Morrissey, all kudos to you, that was some really good work you were doing then.
              I actually managed to get a bit of a rise out Mora a few weeks back when I called him out in a email for quoting The Kiwi blog as a legitimate news source, and not identifying Farrar as a Right wing blogger/pollster (or words to that effect), and not having any balance on his show which is always pulling to the right..here was his response…

              …Hi Adrian, I think the last time David Farrar was on was the only time in a while that I omitted to mention his Curia polling connection.
              I had a quote from The Daily Blog lined up to use the other day, I forget whether I did or not, but I certainly quote from liberal and left sources.
              I would consider we have a lot of liberal opinion on The Panel, and I don’t think it’s the case that conservative opinion should be somehow banned.

              Cheers,

              Jim

        • georgecom 3.1.1.2

          interesting comment about the some of the lefts reaction to Trump/Russia Adrian.

          Trump is certainly narcissistic, self aggrandizing, arguably self deluded and pocket lining. Some have swallowed the rhetoric and mistruths Trump (and others) have perpetuated about him ‘draining the swamp’, ‘making america great again’ and being anti establishment. A bit of time stopping and having a decent think confirms the simple facts that Trump is a 1 percenter, will rule in the benefits of trump first, fellow 1 percenters second, everyone else third and that he is absolutely establishment. He won’t seriously change the political/economic settings of the US aside from where it works for him and 1 percenters.

          For that you need to go to someone like a Bernie Sanders.

    • veutoviper 3.2

      I knew there was a reason I bought lots of popcorn and wine the other day!

      EDIT – just read your 7.2.1

      “I like that better than – luke warm middle ground hey we’re all the same posts personally.” and in the same post “Personally I agree with tiger mountain above but maybe 50/50.”

      ROFL

  4. Tiger Mountain 4

    “…Infamy, infamy–they’ve all got it in for me!”
    –Kenneth Williams as Julius Ceasar in “Carry on Cleo” 1964

    Julian Assange is no popular figure in many quarters, but TRP over reaches here in his longstanding disdain for the man, while Wikileaks has increasingly exhibited tendencies common to many self appointed groups, (and activist groups likely penetrated by various security agencies) the points should be added up…

    look at Wikileaks sworn enemies, versus the information they have released to the public, NZ TPPA activists would have been snookered without the secret TPPA drafts, which ultimately turned out to be accurate; that the NZ Labour Party sold out all this good work with the CPTPP is another matter…

    the ledger looks about 70/30 to me in good works vs more dubious ones

  5. johnm 5

    GETTING JULIAN ASSANGE: THE UNTOLD STORY By John Pilger

    http://johnpilger.com/articles/getting-julian-assange-the-untold-story

    ” Julian Assange has been vindicated because the Swedish case against him was corrupt. The prosecutor, Marianne Ny, obstructed justice and should be prosecuted. Her obsession with Assange not only embarrassed her colleagues and the judiciary but exposed the Swedish state’s collusion with the United States in its crimes of war and “rendition”.

    Had Assange not sought refuge in the Ecuadorean embassy in London, he would have been on his way to the kind of American torture pit Chelsea Manning had to endure.

    This prospect was obscured by the grim farce played out in Sweden. “It’s a laughing stock,” said James Catlin, one of Assange’s Australian lawyers. “It is as if they make it up as they go along”.

    It may have seemed that way, but there was always serious purpose. In 2008, a secret Pentagon document prepared by the “Cyber Counterintelligence Assessments Branch” foretold a detailed plan to discredit WikiLeaks and smear Assange personally. “

    • corodale 5.1

      ..but wasn’t Pilger also a “right wing anti democracy activist”!

      This “Julian Assange; Journey’s End?” is up there with The Standard’s all time worst, truely dellusional dribble.

  6. joe90 6

    I guess the shot across the bow was successful.

    The United States threatened to hit Ecuador with retaliatory trade measures and pull military aid because the South American country is proposing an international resolution that encourages breastfeeding. The US eventually agreed to the resolution — when Russia backed it.

    https://www.vox.com/2018/7/8/17546142/trump-breastfeeding-new-york-times-ecuador

  7. Shona 7

    why you thought your status as an uninformed dickhead needed to be confirmed on such a bright and sunny morning is beyond me @ TRP. But there you go, you’ve done it anyway for anyone who still bothers with The Standard, they have been warned.

    • Siobhan 7.1

      indeed.

    • I’m a socialist writing on a left wing blog, Shona. I don’t give a flying one whether righties and rape apologists read TS. However, I am going outside to mow the lawn, so thanks for the weather update.

      • marty mars 7.2.1

        I think the benefit of a polarizing (imo) opinion is that it allows opposite opinions to be voiced either as comments or some author posting a different view. I like that better than – luke warm middle ground hey we’re all the same posts personally. Keep racism sexism and all the other bigotry out and imo we are sweet to go.

        Personally I agree with tiger mountain above but maybe 50/50.

        • Richard Christie 7.2.1.1

          If exposure of suppressed information is the overriding objective, then it is an activity independent of further value judgement.

          Good or bad outcomes simply are not Wikileaks concern. That judgement depends on the observer’s stance.

      • Shona 7.2.2

        oh dear seem to have struck a nerve there TRP.

      • KJT 7.2.3

        Alternative facts again, TRP.

        Do you believe this stuff, or do you just make it up?

    • greywarshark 7.3

      Shona and Rranters R’Us
      Please stop and take a breath when you rant. There are so many things today to rant about and you are likely to be gasping before you finish. I recommend you get a roll of white newsprint and write down every negative adjective you can think on it, preferably in red, plus the names of the people you hate at this particular time. Then fold it up to mat size and then jump up and down on it.

      This is a very healthy thing to do – gets the cruelty and dysfunction of the world out of your head, also the names of the people currently unsatisfactory (there will be others) who follow the same route), it gets your blood pumping through exercise, and makes you feel able to go out in the sunshine feeling better.

      And try to do something positive for yourself, you deserve it. Be kind to yourself and don’t let the rotten things in the world overwhelm you.

      I suggest that you just don’t say what a lod of b…. because then you will not get the benefit of my recommendation and probably get indigestion as well.

    • Ed 7.4

      Must be one of the most ill-informed posts I’ve ever read on the Standard.
      That and the woeful Trumputin last week.

    • spikeyboy 7.5

      Thats very restrained Shona. I thought for a moment I’d stumbled blindly to whaleoil or farrah or some weird shit like that. Never ever thought I’d read such shit here

  8. johnm 8

    Less than 24 hours later, the Stockholm Chief Prosecutor, Eva Finne, took over the investigation. She wasted 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.”

    John Pilger

    ” Julian Assange has been vindicated because the Swedish case against him was corrupt. The prosecutor, Marianne Ny, obstructed justice and should be prosecuted. Her obsession with Assange not only embarrassed her colleagues and the judiciary but exposed the Swedish state’s collusion with the United States in its crimes of war and “rendition”.

    She wasted 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.”

  9. Adrian Thornton 9

    TE REO PUTAKE, if you are so adverse to weak men on the web “choosing to hide in the dark” how about you put your real name to this piece?

    [Not necessary Adrian. Please address the post rather than the author – MS]

  10. Morrissey 10

    Lest we forget: THIS is the reason that the criminals of Washington and London want to exterminate Assange and anyone else who dares to confront their crimes….

    • Ed 10.1

      This video should be compulsory viewing. It blew my mind when I first saw it some years ago.
      No wonder the establishment hates Wikileaks.

    • spikeyboy 10.2

      Anyone who watches this video and can still write the above crap has gone to a place far to the right. After all the wierd shit that was written against Bills post on Greenwald and in particular the nasty line taken by lprent and advantage I guess it was only a short hop to this diarahoea.

  11. Morrissey 11

    The paranoid anti state righties who back Assange…

    !!!!????!?!???!?!?!?!???

    Noam Chomsky, Daniel Ellsberg, Brian Eno, Nicky Hager, Ralph Nader, John Pilger, John Kiriakou, Ray McGovern, Sharon Ward, Roger Waters, Vivienne Westwood, etc, etc. are “paranoid anti state righties” now, are they? When did that happen?

    https://justice4assange.com/

    • Ed 11.1

      TRP’s post is utter nonsense.
      I’d take the word of Chomsky, Pilger and many others before this gibberish any day.

    • Ad 11.2

      Every single one of them are paranoid and anti-state. Whether that makes them “righties” is mere labelling.

      • Morrissey 11.2.1

        Your comments are neither serious nor informed by any reading. Until this masterpiece by our bloodyminded obsessive friend Te Reo, it was your sub-sophomoric “Trump Meets Putin” on July 16th that was undoubtedly the trashiest piece of nonsense to ever appear on this site.

        • Ad 11.2.1.1

          You are defending the statement that they are not “paranoid and ant-state”.

          So start. Unless of course defending them is itself a paranoid act.

          • Morrissey 11.2.1.1.1

            You are neither serious nor informed. You need to do some reading.

            • Ed 11.2.1.1.1.1

              A lot of reading.

            • Ad 11.2.1.1.1.2

              Having put up the names of 11 people, you can’t be bothered defending them against descriptions that you put against them with a single citation that defends your proposition.

              I’m not the lazy one. You are.

              • tom

                Grow up Ad, seriously, grow up, you do discredit to this site, and to the left as a whole, please, please please read a bit more to be informed about a subject before commenting in total ignorance of reality and making this site as redundant as MSM, so sad to see the collapse of intelligence in the left on display on this site recently, with the ‘no such thing as free speech’ crap, to the russiagate crap, to this
                The Standard has hit all time low TRP also please wake up dude this is the biggest sham of an article ever put on this site, totally pathetic, does a total dis service to the left and to reality.
                really makes me wanna give up on the standard to be perfectly honest. Which is really sad as it is important the left have a vehicle for rational discussion of issues confronting the left, but this..No

                • Thanks, Tom. My analysis of wikileaks is that they do not benefit the majority and are, in fact working against the best interests of the people of this planet. The old saw “qui bono” applies here. Who benefits?

                  In this case, the beneficiaries of wikileaks are primarily crooks and capitalists. Despite all the handwringing about St Julian fucking his way into self imposed house arrest, I haven’t read a case from the left that wikileaks has helped end poverty, diminished climate change or improved the lives of working people.

                  Instead, they have weakened trust in participatory democracy, emboldened the anti-state and neo fascist arms of the right and paved the way for the success of Putin in the recent Presidential election. The American one, not the Russian one. The latter was always a forgone conclusion.

                  If you can make a case for Wikileaks having helped the people, please do so. I’d welcome a debate about that aspect and so far, from memory, only Tiger Mountain has looked at this post from that perspective.

                  • tom

                    no need for thanks, it was not a compliment, and it sure was not analysis, as that would involve analysing something, this was a hack job the likes of which not even hoskings would put out.
                    I tried to start an aternative analysis, but really i cannot be #$%^ed, as i feel it is a waste of time i do not really have, i did try on this subject a few yrs ago and was called a rape something or rather which was of course absolute bollocks and gave up then too, i really am so dismayed by this, just think you are believing the establishment neoliberal propaganda over true ‘left’ legends and people i admire most in this world, such as Chomsky, Hager, Pilger, Naomi Klein, Democracy Now, Adam Curtis ect..they would disable your hosking like diatribes in a second with well reasoned facts, and even then i do not believe you would listen or actually read the full weight of info on this subject to be properly informed.

                    If this is the left in NZ we are lost completely and utterly.

                  • spikeyboy

                    If you call that analysis then you are a joke. Like Tom says. Its a hatchet job. And this site is the same as any other mainstream site. Chock full of bollocks. Bill the only person left worth reading but looks like his days are numbered too. Reds under the beds guys are winning. CIA and FBI as sources of the truth. Oh my god what have you become???

        • Ed 11.2.1.2

          Two articles in a week defending the neocon neoliberal establishment .
          Both shameful.

      • Ed 11.2.2

        It’s your opinion they are paranoid.
        I’d describe them as well read, well informed, principled, independent, courageous.
        I respect their opinion much higher than trp,-a sometime poster.
        Why are you supporting the neocon establishment?

        • Ad 11.2.2.1

          Morrissey has put up the names of 11 people, and can’t be bothered defending them against descriptions put against them with a single citation that defends the clear proposition defending those 11 named people.

          Defending them with citations is itself giving in to paranoia.

          • Hanswurst 11.2.2.1.1

            This is really rather backwards, Ad. You’re framing it as though Morrissey is the one making a substantial claim, whereas all he’s doing is giving grounds for why TRP’s unreferenced claim doesn’t seem sufficient on its own. The onus is squarely on TRP to put up some sort of qualification, be it in the form of a justification for why those individuals qualify as paranoid, anti-state righties, or a clarification (with names) that he only meant *some* of Assange’s backers (or only a subset, such as financial backers, information sources or whatever).

            Also, in the absence of a definition of exactly what the word “state” entails, or at least one instance of each of the named individuals’ fearmongering without justification, how is their being “righties” any more a matter of opinion than whether they are “anti-state” or “paranoid”? Your separation of the terms from each other is also quite disingenuous, given that many people probably have quite different “anti-state” ideologies in mind, depending on whether those ideologies come from the right or the left. Those sorts of sleights of hand seem provocative, rather than informative, which is odd in light of your going on to ask others for more information.

            • Ad 11.2.2.1.1.1

              Morrissey fell into his own trap for himself by specifying 11 named people against a series of rhetorical terms. The framing was his own.

              Morrissey’s link provided did not mention any of the people that he cited. More rhetorical handbagging.

              So no, the onus of argument hasn’t shifted at all away from Morrissey.

              Everything looks like a provocation to a commenter like Morrissey who holds any actual skin in front of him like Bartholemew the Apostle.

              • Ed

                Morrissey is one of the gems on this site.

              • Hanswurst

                So no, the onus of argument hasn’t shifted at all away from Morrissey.

                It never shifted to him. He didn’t really need to do anything except ask TRP to clarify and back up what he said. Anything else you might ask Morrisey to do is pure distraction if you are attempting to defend TRP’s characterisation of Assange’s backers; if you are not trying to defend that, then there would seem to be absolutely no point at all to what you are saying.

                • Hi, Hanswurst. Just to clarify, I accept that not all Assange supporters are right wing. The post doesn’t claim all Assange supporters are right wing, but it does directly mention that section of the fanbase.

                  The post is written in the (vain?) hope that those lefties who are uncritical of his personal behaviour because of his involvement in Wikileaks will see that it’s possible to separate the individual from the work. eg. Harvey Weinstein produced some excellent films, but appears to be an odious individual.

                  Secondly, I’m hoping that lefties reading the post will challenge what Wikileaks actually does and that is undermine the democratic state at a time when capitalism is rampant and choking our world to death.

                  Does Wikileaks serve a positive purpose? I’d say, overwhelmingly not. If it exposed capital, then that answer would be a yes.

          • spikeyboy 11.2.2.1.2

            Do you really not understand how unimportant your question is ad?? Are you really that vacuous. Do you have any feeling? Is there any blood flowing in your veins or is it all just a game with words?

        • reason 11.2.2.2

          Agreed Ed …..

          Any fool knows Hager is against Abuse of state power …. How Ads conflated that with “anti-state” ….. is the sort of Ad Hom dribble John Key was using to dismiss the facts and information contained in “Dirty Politics” …..

          But in attaching the Paranoid label to Nicky Hager…. Ad is being a particular unsavory wanker …

          “Conspiracy theorist” was another Ad Hom Key and the Nats used against Hager ,,,,, There are many on the right ( national voters ) who believe that shit …

          Its a baseless classless nasty smear …. and Ad should hang his warmongering head in shame for perpetuating and spreading it.

          ……….

          Relating to the topic and content of this thread ….. I imagine many people who have been raped would feel the crime against them minimised …. by Assange being labeled a rapist.

          I base this on the opinion of two real rape victims I’ve discussed Assange and his condom crimes with. …

          And When I say real rape victims ….. I define this as real non- consenting sex,… ie saying No ….. or incapacitated and unable to consent, through Alcohol or other drug s …. underage victims …etc etc

          • te reo putake 11.2.2.2.1

            “And When I say real rape victims ….. I define this as real non- consenting sex,… ie saying No ….. or incapacitated and unable to consent, through Alcohol or other drug s …. underage victims …etc etc”

            You don’t get to define what rape is and isn’t. Leave that to the victims. And please recall that one of the allegations is that Assange raped a sleeping woman, who’s unconsciousness presumably meets your “incapacitated and unable to consent” threshold.

            Don’t go down this line again.

            • reason 11.2.2.2.1.1

              And what gives you the right to judge I have not been the victim of sexual assult or rape te reo putake ????

              Do you want me to admit this on a internet forum?? ….

              are you blissfully ignorant of the number of male sexual abuse victims in NZ ????

              Can men not be raped …. or just not me ????

              Let me tell you some New zealand stories before we get to your drip drip drip reporting of Assange te reo putake …….

              In the 1970s there was a commune called center point where mass child abuse / rape was taking place …. a compromised two man inquiery of this produced no charges at the time ( one of the cops was a pedophile )

              IN the 1980s in Rotorua we had pack rapist police men

              2005 / 2006 in the Wairarapa Area we had the police not investigating hundreds of child abuse cases …. with police telling lies and covering up.

              Amid all this very real abuse and rape throughout the decades in New Zealand there was a newly seperated ‘solo mum’ ,,,,, mine.

              Not wanting to go on a benefit ( if it existed then ) she took in a border … for extra money… and to babysit her children as she had taken on a second part time job in addition to her main full time one.

              The Border

              He was released from prison … and I presume he lied to her and said he had done time for some socially acceptable crime in the 1970’s era .. like drink driving or something … she got duped … and I can accept that.

              What I find hard to understand is how his probation officer let a child sex offender pedophile move into a solo mums …. to child mind.

              This particular man ended up hanging himself while on remand in jail for the attempted sodomy of a infant child in another family a few years later.

              I am more than fully fucken entitled to speak about sex abuse / rape …… and I feel like your a right fucking arsehole for forcing me to disclose what I did … te reo putake

              I alos feel like your an arsehole for ignoring the two female rape victims I’ve spoken too …. and their take on the assange allegations …. They’ve been raped but do not feel Assange is a rapist.

              Their and my understanding …. is that both women had consented to sex when they went to bed with the man slut Julian ….. but assange went for seconds when they were asleep and did not wear a condom …..

              I will agree its rape if either of these woman said stop and he did not ….. Is that what happened te reo putake ??

              And unlike you …. and despite my not thinking these consenting women , at the start of the night, were raped ….

              I think the best way forward should be to have a restorative type hearing …. and see if these women want Julian punished more,… or what else they want to happen …… Its all based on them ….. So what are their feelings?.

              Having them involved in the conclusion or ending of this long long saga would dispel the impression of them being sidelined and used.

              I still think your a arsehole te reo putake ….. you should think about what you post to people ………. I wont tell the two women victims I know of about your rude aggressive dismissive post. ….

              judging by how you made me feel …it would upset them ….

              • Fuck off lying and take you faux outrage with you Philip ure

                • reason

                  I’m not phil ure … you shithead moron.
                  \
                  And your shithead claim i’m telling lies is absolute shit on your part…. moron

                  The only other poster who consistantly accused me of telling lies was / is ….. Pete / repatete … a poster with two user names

                  or maybe three Al1en ?

              • ” … but assange went for seconds when they were asleep and did not wear a condom ….. I will agree its rape if either of these woman said stop and he did not ”

                Your definition of rape isn’t what the law says here or in Sweden. It’s also a morally repugnant position to take. Consent is always required. That’s it. No consent, no sex. Just go and have a wank would be my advice.

                Just to help clear up another area of your ignorance, Assange is not only accused of having sex with an unconscious woman but also having removed a condom during consensual sex despite being specifically asked by the woman to wear it. If these things happened, both are sexual assault.

                No more MRA style weasel words please. And next time you feel the urge to call an author an arsehole, look in the mirror first, take a deep breath, and don’t do it. You’ve got valid points to add to the discussions at TS, none of which will be heard if you are banned. Understand?

                • reason

                  I understand what your saying …. despite not knowing who MRA is and your affiliating me with them …

                • One Two

                  TRP why are you still stuck on this, and why have you seemingly not developed since your previous stints at TS?

                  I read some of your articles elsewhere on various subjects and it was as it they were authored by someone else…

                  Your articles and commenting style at TS are unchanged over the years…

                  • Good question! I have been writing for more years than I care to remember, both for fun and for money.

                    One of the skills you learn is to tailor your words to the audience, so if I was, say, writing for Farmers Weekly, I would use different words, sentence lengths and paragraph structures than I would if I were writing for The NZ Woman’s Weekly.

                    Writing as TRP, I have been published on TS, TDB and Pete George’s Your NZ. I have slightly different approaches to each platform, but they are, I hope, reasonably consistent in tone. Mostly what I write is opinion, however, occasionally, I’ll do pretty much straight reportage if something newsworthy has happened. The ‘My Little Ponytail’ piece on Key’s harrassment of a waitress, based on Bomber Bradbury’s excellent work, springs to mind.

                    I try to be provocative, contrarian and challenging as much as possible and as humorous as the subject allows. Happily, most TS commenters are clever, articulate people who are more than capable of springboarding off whatever meagre scribblings I come up with and the depth, humour and wisdom displayed in the comments remains the real strength of the Standard.

                    He tangata, he tangata, he tangata! It is the people, it is the people, it is the people!

                    • reason

                      Is al1ens above comment to me allowed to stand in this thread te reo putake?

                      “Fuck off lying and take you faux outrage with you Philip ure”

                      perhaps you have missed it ?

                      Julian Assange; Journey’s End?

                      [Given that you’d normally be banned for calling an author an arsehole, I think you should take the same charitable approach to al1en’s reply. Just ignore it. The reference to the esteemed Mr Ure was … presumably … because … you both … like using lots of dots in your comments. TRP]

  12. Drowsy M. Kram 12

    Easy to kick the pale stale male while he’s down, but unnecessary (IMO). Assange and others founded WikiLeaks in 2006, so he has spent roughly half the period of WikiLeaks’ existence confined to Ecuador’s London embassy.

    An accusation of rape is just that, and following up two mentions of rape with the characterisation of Assange as “a Weinstein of the web” is simple demonisation (again IMO).

    Assange polarises opinion – his efforts have been perceived as beneficial or harmful by various groups and individuals. I find the more neutral information in the Wikipedia article on Assange preferable to the opinions expressed in this post.

    Honours and awards
    2008, The Economist New Media Award
    2009, Amnesty International UK Media Awards
    2010, TIME Person of the Year, Reader’s Choice
    2010, Sam Adams Award
    2011, Free Dacia Award
    2011, Sydney Peace Foundation Gold Medal
    2011, Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism
    2011, Walkley Award for Most Outstanding Contribution to Journalism
    2011, Voltaire Award for Free Speech
    2012, Big Brother Awards Hero of Privacy
    2013, Global Exchange Human Rights Award, People’s Choice
    2013, Yoko Ono Lennon Courage Award for the Arts
    2013, New York Festivals World’s Best TV & Films Silver World Medal
    2014, Union of Journalists in Kazakhstan Top Prize

    • spikeyboy 12.1

      I’d be pretty stoked with just the Martha Gellhorn award. Perhaps trp should take a look at some previous winners of that one. Heres a clue. There are no duds and no neoliberals for that matter.

  13. SaveNZ 13

    Another whistleblower hunted down and targeted by western governments. Not a good look, no wonder the West is going down the gurgler!

    • Ed 13.1

      And this article is not a good look .

      • Bewildered 13.1.1

        I think Assange will be double bunking with Dotcom shortly

        • Naki man 13.1.1.1

          Assange might discover why its called a long stretch inside.

          • Ed 13.1.1.1.1

            That comment is utterly depraved.
            You are a sick human being to write that.
            Do you take pleasure in other people’s misery?

            • James 13.1.1.1.1.1

              Save your outrage for the women he raped.

              Ed the rape apologist – because he’s a fan of the rapist.

              • Ed

                In the world I live in, people are innocent until proven guilty.

                • james

                  That isnt true – you make all sorts of accusations of people without any evidence to back it up rather frequently.

                  Its people like you that create a rape culture – being an apologist for someone like this.

                • solkta

                  In the world that you live in people are guilty before you have even made the law that they are, umm will be, guilty of.

              • spikeyboy

                James the dickhead because hes a dickhead

  14. greywarshark 14

    Might this be Julian Assange’s adopted song on his difficult journey?

    Don’t Dream It’s Over
    Crowded House

    There is freedom within, there is freedom without
    Try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
    There’s a battle ahead, many battles are lost
    But you’ll never see the end of the road
    While you’re traveling with me

    Hey now, hey now
    Don’t dream it’s over
    Hey now, hey now
    When the world comes in
    They come, they come
    To build a wall between us
    We know they won’t win

    Now I’m towing my car, there’s a hole in the roof
    My possessions are causing me suspicion but there’s no proof
    In the paper today tales of war and of waste
    But you turn right over to the T.V. page

    Hey now, hey now

    Now I’m walking again to the beat of a drum
    And I’m counting the steps to the door of your heart
    Only shadows ahead barely clearing the roof
    Get to know the feeling of liberation and release

    Hey now, hey now

    Don’t let them win (hey now, hey now, hey now, hey now)
    Hey now, hey now
    Don’t let them win (they come, they come)
    Don’t let them win (hey now, hey now, hey now, hey now)

    Songwriter : Neil Finn

  15. Ovid 15

    Putin will want Assange dead now. Assange knows too much about the collusion between Russia and Trump and has a lot of incentive to cut a deal with the Mueller investigation should he be extradited to the US. The guy had better watch out for a novichok-polonium cocktail.

    • greywarshark 15.1

      Disposable gloves Assange and drink from your own mug wiped clean before each use.? Don’t have soap on a rope. A bit scary but perhaps some modern spy writer might like to co-write a novel about this and get some money for the poor bloke. And thanks to the Ecuadorean embassy. for having a pair. No use applying to our clean-cut house of democracy.

    • Anne 15.2

      Now that’s a very interesting hypothesis Ovid. The old adage that truth can be stranger than fiction has become remarkably topical in recent times and your contribution imo has a lot of merit.

    • spikeyboy 15.3

      More weird shit from the reds under the bed brigade. Where do you get these thoughts from. I can tell they arent yours. Snap your fingers. It may be enough to wake you up

  16. johnm 16

    Historian Pete says:
    July 22, 2018 at 12:29 pm

    Julian Assange has been among the greatest threats to the U.S. Empire and their motley European allies, that unfortunately includes N.Z. The new N.Z Labour/ N.Z First/ Greens government will continue its grovelling obeisance to the Nazi U.S. Empire , that has been done formerly so grotesquely by the Neocon National Party Govt, and will do nothing.The British government will extradite Assange to the U.S. to be jailed for 200 years or executed. One more avenue for the broadcasting of the TRUTH will be silenced.An iron curtain of repression is slowly coming over the Western experiment through the Western Govts, Western MSM, and the Internet false narratives.And we sit here like boiled frogs waiting for our turn in the pot.On the bright side ,the cavorting of Herr Trump signals the fundamental contradictions of the U.S. evil Empire, and presages the future collapse of the whole degenerate edifice. Bring it on!!!

  17. weston 17

    This post reminds me of the nastier side of feminism in the seventies especially the positively hatefull “Weinstein of the web”slur …pretty low TRP

    • Ed 17.1

      Very low.
      As bad as the dreadful Trumputin post.
      The left is riddled with the ghosts of Clinton and Blair.

  18. Making 18

    Assange will be arrested and probably spend the rest of his life in jail….did he really think it would end any other way? It’s consequences to his actions…time for him to be a man. Ps John Pilger is a journalist….like Mike Hosking is! Lol.

    • Gabby 18.1

      Horeskin’s an entertainer he reckons merking.

    • spikeyboy 18.2

      Most right thinking people would have hoped it would have ended differently and certainly wouldnt be quite so gleeful at the execution. Do you think you would have faced the end more heroically? Spose dreams are free but Id say you would never even have had the courage to even make the first step on the journey Assange is on. Snivelling coward is writ very large in your words.

  19. McFlock 19

    I said a few years ago that he was, amongst other things, a diplomatic bargaining chip.

    I guess we’ll see.

    Just as we’ll see after that if the UK charge him with skipping bail, which will nail him down long enough for the swedes to go for extradition again, or the yanks to request extradition if the grand jury thing has any gristle.

  20. johm 20

    Bella_Fantasia • 5 hours ago

    If not for Julian Assange exposing the abuses of the Last Empire, we’d hardly know anything of the real atrocities done by complicit ‘partners’. If Julian Assange is killed or disappeared, we must make absolutely certain he becomes a martyr, that his name and causes, which truly benefit the people, will never be silenced, that the ears of the rogue elites will ring forever with our support for him, that they never hear the end of what they have done to him. Support for Assange is something we can build upon, for all the right and just reasons.

    Breaking development:
    Ecuadorian sources tell Intercept that Julian Assange could be evicted from London embassy this week

    https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/07/21/assa-j21.html

    TonyVodvarka • 17 hours ago

    Aren’t there any Australians who are ashamed to find themselves the running dogs of the USA military machine? One can only hope that JA has an ace up his sleeve in the form of definitive information about the murder of Seth Rich. Viva Assange!

    Avatar
    Sinbad2 TonyVodvarka • 4 hours ago

    Well this Aussie is certainly ashamed that Australia is little more than an American colony, and how the Australian media has gone 100% propaganda.
    Avatar
    Clara McNee • 18 hours ago

    Watching this man’s imprisonment in the embassy by the U.S. and Britain is one of the most shocking displays of inhumanity. Both countries profess to be democratic and have free speech. Both countries profess to be of the ‘free world’ where you can have a good life. All Assange did was tell on them. Everybody knew it anyways from all the Hollywood and British war movies out there. The movie studios have been telling the stories of the hypocrisy of the powerful for years but when the lil’ guy exposes them well that’s another story, he must be punished. What they are doing to Assange should frighten us all. It will definitely keep a lot of people quiet.

  21. cleangreen 21

    Yes Save NZ,

    It is a slow sinking feeing that leaves me no chioce than to request the following;

    We request they at Wikileaks call on the Russian Embassy (to use their Embassy Privlege) to go to the Ecuador embassy and transport Assange to Moscow ASASP.

  22. corodale 22

    Wikileaks was good, but who saw wikispooks before The UN et. al. had it remved? Wikispooks where shooting with solids!

  23. fraws 23

    Without, hopefully, going too off topic of TRP’s opinion piece, this is an angle I’ve wondered about. I haven’t seen it discussed before. I’d be interested if anyone thinks it has any merit.

    My interpretation of what the Swedish claim that their laws require:

    Step 1. Extradition. Assange to be extradited from England to Sweden to be interviewed. This interview must take place in Sweden. Based on the outcome of the interview, Assange would either be released or charges are laid.

    Step 2. Charges Laid. The evidence for the charges would be made available to Assange’s lawyers for them to prepare Assange’s defence. During this period Assange may be held in custody in Sweden, but he would have access to his lawyers.

    Step 3. Trial. A trial is held. Assange is found not guilty and released, or guilty and held for sentencing.

    Step 4. Sentencing. A sentence is passed down to Assange.

    Step 5. Rehabilitation. Assange serves his sentence and is released.

    While Sweden has its own laws, it is part of the EU and must adhere to EU law. EU law includes the equivalent of “Miranda rights”, i.e. “The right to remain silent.”

    Thus, in England, Assange could have publicly issued an affidavit, that stated “my answer to all questions that Sweden wishes to ask me, is that I reserve my right to remain silent.”

    If Assange had done this, then he would effectively override Step 1. There would be no need to extradite him to Sweden to interview him as the answer to all questions is already known in advance via the affidavit. Sweden would then have been forced to proceed with Step 2 and decide whether or not to lay charges.

    If charges had been laid, then Sweden could again seek Assange’s extradition from England to Sweden, but this time for him to appear for a trial. The evidence that the charges were based on would have become public as part of the new extradition request. Assange could have challenged, in the England courts, the validity of his extradition based on this evidence.

    OK. Can you shoot holes in this scenario?

    • McFlock 23.1

      If I understand the British supreme court judgement, essentially the second interview immediately before his arrest was to present the gathered case to the suspect and provide an opportunity for explanation. Unless the suspect offers up something significant, then the Swedish arrest occurs and the trial happens quickly afterward.

      So a refusal to answer at that stage simply takes the case to court on the evidence already gathered.

      • lprent 23.1.1

        So a refusal to answer at that stage simply takes the case to court on the evidence already gathered.

        Yeah, that is my understanding as well.

        My issues with the case have more to do with the issuing of a interpol warrant simply for questioning based on a law that appears to be more of the order of a misdemeanor than an offense. It simply was not serious enough to warrant international action or to forcibly extract someone from another country. This impression wasn’t exactly helped by the prosecutor (apparently citing costs) not wanting to send someone over to the UK to do the questions there.

        The way that the process had all of the hallmarks of being some kind of patched together job either for the re-election of the prosecutor or for changing the venue to a more compliant legal system.

        I personally think that Julian Assange is largely a self-promoting arsehole who doesn’t take any obvious thought about those he tramples over, and who’d I be wary about ever trusting. Even so, the process taken just leaves a stench of corruption in my nostrils.

        • Anne 23.1.1.1

          I was under the impression that Assange and co. suspected Sweden was operating on behalf of US officials (FBI I presume) and once they had Assange back in Sweden they would at some point hand him over to them.

          • McFlock 23.1.1.1.1

            That’s what they said when fighting extradition from UK. But the same legal team claimed he’d been accused of “sex by surprise” rather than sexual assault. And the UK is a closer ally to US than Sweden is.

            • lprent 23.1.1.1.1.1

              From what I can see (not that much due to the language differences) the UK courts tend to be somewhat more independent of political concerns. I suspect that translates through to the extradition. Even under the rather blase 2003 US-UK extradition treaty there have a been a number of visible cases on appeal where the extradition has been denied.

              The UK courts have a strong tradition of looking (as do our courts) rather strongly at the conformance between the offenses in their jurisdiction and that of the extradition jurisdiction. There are rather a lot of examples of them refusing to extradite to the US because of the variance between their laws.

              However in the case of the Swedish requested extradition from the UK, there really aren’t that many grounds to deny it because it wasn’t for trial and therefore a specific offense. It was just for questioning by a prosecutor and covered by internal EU extradition laws that tend towards the prosecutor freedom to investigate. However as Assange’s legal team pointed out repeatably, there was also no guarantee that the Swedes wouldn’t ship him, off to the US to face unrelated charges.

              The UK courts certainly wouldn’t have treated the level of the Swedish complaints made as being criminal under UK law. It would also be unlikely that they would look very favorably on a request based around a theft of documents that would be the likely charges that the US would use in either the UK and Sweden.

              However Sweden probably would reflexively respond to a US extradition request because it is based on a Napoleonic prosecutor system. I’m not going to go through the argument about that – but essentially it is a political prosecutor decision rather than the court decision for anything that doesn’t involve political offenses or the death penalty. It doesn’t require similar prime facie offenses to be in the local law because the purpose of the extradition is to determine a prosecution.

              But once out of Swedish or UK law, the was little that would have constrained the US from adding criminal charges. The limiting factor would have only been whatever agreement was made between the political governments rather than based in legal issues.

              After extradition from the UK to Sweden, a request from Sweden to further extradite to the US is essentially a political and not a court decision in the UK. At the most, the British courts could only be asked if the relevant minister (probably the Home Secretary) still had the power to grant it.

              So it is pretty rational for Assange’s legal team to avoid extradition to Sweden. It increases his legal risk at all levels there.

              • McFlock

                No, his extradition to Sweden was based on the premis that he would have already been arrested and charged in the UK based on the evidence already attained, whereas the Swedes “arrest” further down the line. Assange’s team argued, among other things, that the extradition should have been refused because he had not been arrested. The UK court said that argument would have stood up if the investigation had been only in the early stages, i.e. before he would have been charged by UK police if it had happened in the UK.

                Further extradition is constrained and would require the consent of the UK. That would give Assange’s team another few years to go through the British legal process all over again.

          • mary_a 23.1.1.1.2

            @ Anne … (23.1.1.1) … yes that’s my interpretation of the situation as well.

            Assange. Dotcom. US never far away, holding hands out, waiting and ready to receive!

            Liking either man or not, is not the point. I feel they have both been victims of corruption one way or another … one for exposing corruption. The other lured into a country (NZ .. Dotcom) only to be deceived by government, making extradition to the US easy, for alleged copyright breaches!

            I think we should all sit up and take notice!

        • McFlock 23.1.1.2

          Hmmm.
          Seems more bureaucratic to me. Issue the EAW on the basis of the worst possible interpretation of known facts, work through extradition, and look for reasons to not bother with the 2nd interview in London because if there’s enough to bother with the interview, there’s probably no point to having it if there’s no chance of arrest.

          Are Swedish prosecutors elected?

    • Ross 23.2

      Step 1. Extradition. Assange to be extradited from England to Sweden to be interviewed. This interview must take place in Sweden. Based on the outcome of the interview, Assange would either be released or charges are laid.

      Wrong. Swedish prosecutors could have interviewed Assange in the UK. Indeed they did interview him in the UK, several years after they complained it couldn’t be done. That suggests to me that prosecutors weren’t too interested in getting at the truth, or they suspected no rapes had occurred

      Swedish investigators have interviewed other suspects in the UK.

      https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/731991/Swedish-moves-interview-Julian-Assange-embassy-Ecuador

      The files obtained under Foia reveal that from the very beginning, the “Crown Prosecution Service” in London advised the Swedish prosecutors against the investigative strategy that could have led to a quick closure of the preliminary investigation: questioning Assange in London – as he has requested on many occasions – rather than extraditing him to Stockholm, as the Swedish prosecutors have always tried to do.

      http://espresso.repubblica.it/internazionale/2015/10/16/news/five-years-confined-new-foia-documents-shed-light-on-the-julian-assange-case-1.235129?refresh_ce

      • fraws 23.2.1

        This interview must take place in Sweden.

        My understanding was that this was the initial “demand” of Sweden and they claimed it to be part of Swedish law.

        About six years later, on 14 November 2016, Sweden’s deputy prosecutor Ingrid Isgren interviewed Assange at the Ecuadorian embassy, so at that point it was no longer a requirement.

        FYI: This is Assange’s statement [19 pages pdf] on 14-15 November 2016.

      • Ross 23.2.2

        Swedish prosecutors have interviewed 44 suspects in the UK since 2010, while for five years declining Julian Assange’s offer to be interviewed at the Ecuadoran Embassy in London. They have long insisted that he must go to Sweden to be interviewed about the sex allegations against him.

        Five years and Sweden did nothing to advance the case? It seems that prosecutors there don’t take rape all that seriously, unless they feel that Assange is likely innocent.

        http://www.petertatchellfoundation.org/swedens-double-standards-on-julian-assange/

        • McFlock 23.2.2.1

          Or they didn’t see any point to it.
          Whatever assange says, the initial claims stand as evidence.
          So unless he can come up with something overwhelming to disprove those claims, there’s enough to go to court on for the lesser charges at the very least. And in the he said/she said situation s described, that level of new information is incredibly unlikely.

          So there’s a high probability the interview would change nothing. They’d still want to arrest him.

          So why bother interviewing him in a place you can’t do anything about it?

          • fraws 23.2.2.1.1

            That’s why I’m suggesting that Assange might have been better off in December 2010 to have issued an affidavit that stated something like, “In answer to all questions that the Swedish prosecution may wish to ask me, I will not answer any of these questions and will remain silent as I am entitled to do under EU law.”

            If he’d done that then in 2011 Sweden would have had to make a call on whether to lay charges based on the evidence they had on hand, or to abandon the case.

            If they opted to lay charges, then in 2011 the trial could have gone ahead. If Assange had still not been extradited to Sweden, then it could have gone ahead with Assange in absentia.

            If Assange was at the trial his defence lawyers would have been unlikely to get Assange to take the stand to answer questions. Thus there would be no evidence directly presented by Assange and Assange would not have been subjected to cross-examination by the prosecution.

            Thus in my scenario above, steps 1 through 4 could have occurred in 2011. By having Assange agree to answer questions resulted in Step 1 taking 6 years, and Step 2 only likely to happen if Assange is extradited to Sweden by 2020.

            It would seem to me that Sweden would have a better extradition case if they were wanting Assange to come from England to do, say, a year of jail time having been found guilty of a crime, than to come from England to answer questions.

            • McFlock 23.2.2.1.1.1

              Sweden had a perfectly adequate extradition case, which is why they successfully argued that the UK should extradite Assange. Assange jumped bail before he could be extradited, just like he skipped Sweden before he was formally arrested.

              Assange issuing any affidavit is irrelevant to the fact that he has fled justice twice.

              • RedLogix

                You omit the fact that right at the outset Assange had voluntarily attended interview(s) with the Swedish police, questioned, cleared, released and permitted to leave the country. It can be scarcely claimed he ‘fled justice’ in the context of the sex allegations made at the time.

                It was only after this, when it became obvious the affair had become a political case, that he sought political asylum. If you want to argue that he has been ‘fleeing the US Justice system’ that has openly stated they want to arrest, charge and prosecute him … with a probable life sentence for what are entirely political crimes … then yes you are correct.

                But you should be clear as to exactly what it is that Assange is ‘fleeing’ here.

                • McFlock

                  Bollocks.

                  He wasn’t under arrest. The police were trying to arrange an interview with him, and had told his lawyers that an arrest was likely after the interview. Then he left the country the same day his lawyers were told that.
                  He went to the UK, and the Swedes began extradition proceedings. He lost those proceedings up to the highest level of the British judiciary, then skipped bail / “sought political asylum”.

                  Now it looks like he could well be used to ensure that post-Brexit Tescoes has access to cheap Ecuadorean bananas.

                  • RedLogix

                    I’ve spent the past hour looking at a number of sources and refreshing my memory of it; the whole saga is utterly mind-boggling.

                    I’m not going to get into a linky war with you, all I can say McF is that your highly selective links and presentation of this story does you no credit.

                    The problem I have is simple; if it had only ever been a matter of Assange facing a Swedish Court on some misconduct charges, around the use or misuse of condoms (which can be illegal in Sweden) it would not have dragged out as it has; it would have resolved itself years ago. Most likely, given the evidence and actions to drop the case since, any such prosecution would have either acquitted Assange, or resulted in minor non-custodial sentence. That much has to be obvious.

                    Nor would have Assange inflicted getting on for a decade of imprisonment on himself, just to avoid such a relatively trivial outcome. It’s nonsensical to think so.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, in previous debates on the topic I linked to the swedish prosecution authority and the text of the supreme court judgement, and that made as much impact as anything else – zip.

                      Frankly, I think Assange’s team talked up the US theory to try to skew the system, and he ended up paranoid about his own BS.

                      Either way, we might find out soon.

              • Ross

                Except he remained in Sweden for some time despite being accused of rape. And he was apparently prepared to go back to Sweden to face questioning on one condition. Again, Swedish prosecutors dont seem convinced that Assange committed rape othwrwise they wouldnt have waited several years to question him.

                Feminists Naomi Wolf and Naomi Klein have been somewhat supportive of Assange. Feminists usually dont support alleged rapists so I suspect theres more to this than you realise.

                https://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/793033

  24. Making 24

    To try and make out that JA is some sort of justice hero is nothing short of silly…yes the USA are arseholes…..but to try and make Russia out to be a bastion of truth and justice shows little to no understanding of the world today. And let’s not forget JA’s part in helping Trump become President….anyone who thinks that’s a good thing, has rocks in their head.

    • spikeyboy 24.1

      To try and make out that the Russian government and wikileaks were colludung makes you a blithering idiot

  25. Lucy 25

    I’m sorry a man who has sex with a sleeping woman and removes a condom whilst having sex with another is no ‘hero’. The best that can be said is that he is an arrogant Australia with a born to rule attitude and only a passing glance at the truth. The bus that he threw Chelsea Manning under was huge – for that alone I am glad he has basically spent years in prison – albeit a much nicer one than military prison.

  26. tom 26

    RTP what a joke, grow up, this is an embarrassment to all the left, the weakest and most pathetic article i have ever seen on this site, it shows no intelligence, no understanding, no attempt to understand. It is a disgrace, a total turn off from this site, one i used to be proud to have a place to discuss how the left can move into the future to provide the world a better place for the majority and to limit the power of the all controlling Neoliberal Corporations and war mongers. A sad demise, hopefully this is just the low point and some people take a look in the mirror and at the world in reality and we can reach a new high water mark, but it is a long way off from here.
    Pretty dismal feeling i have about the ‘left’ in NZ at present, with the debacle around ‘free speech’ and falling into Western propaganda about Russia (who are also the bad guys so don’t try to put me in that false category), but this has topped those which i thought would have been quite dificult

    • McFlock 26.1

      As yelp reviews go, pretty negative…

      • tom 26.1.1

        i do not know what that means i am no social media expert or internet warrior or such like, so please translate a ‘yelp review’

        • McFlock 26.1.1.1

          lol Yelp is just a thing where people review restaurants and other stuff. No offense meant, it just reads with a level of vitriol like a theatre review where the director of the piece slept with the reviewer’s partner.

          • tom 26.1.1.1.1

            i can assure you RTP never slept with anyone i know, that i know of at least, but i am terribly upset at the descent of debate by the left here (and that is pretty obvious from the comments i made i know) falling for traps set by the establishment propaganda that can easily be avioded through being informed fully of all the angles of debate, none of which was shown in this piece of hackery.
            but call it what you like, ‘yelp’ that is probably a fair description, but the reason is not for personal reasons, just i really was disturbed that after all the years of hard work that i and others have done to increase debate around topics truly ‘left’, to see the level of debate descend this low and so out of touch with reality and facts, is more than sad to me, really.. really!

            • McFlock 26.1.1.1.1.1

              From my perspective, this isn’t really a “left” issue.

              Even without his legal woes, Assange seems to be a bit of a dick who acts rashly and impulsively when he takes things personally, and he takes everything personally. Sort of like Elon Musk.

              But Wikileaks also was an amazing innovation that initially did massive amounts of good, shining light on great wrongs. But it’s also done things like dox female voters in Turkey, and has done very little against oppressive regimes that aren’t the USA.

              He can be both things, and Wikileaks can be both things.

              The entire ‘back door extradition to the US via Sweden’ angle doesn’t explain why the yanks didn’t just extradite him when he was in Sweden in the first place rather than inventing sexual assault allegations. Lprent suggested re-election obsessions by political prosecutors – could well be in the line of Roman Polanski. But I tend more towards simple bureaucracy. Probably my erstwhile hats.

              But I’m also incredibly cynical about why Ecuador took him in in the first place.

      • spikeyboy 26.1.2

        And youre being positive. Or just clever? Or maybe the celebrated rational argument man. Nothing to feel here. Nothing won or lost? Just a battle of wits.

        [If this is a battle of wits, you appear to be unarmed. In the last hour you’ve made a series of comments that appear to be mere trolling. Please put more effort in to constructing a viable argument in future. TRP]

  27. SPC 27

    So he will go to court over bail terms breach (with or without the consent of those who put up the money) and then we witness the Trumpian pumpkin “trick and treat” request an extradition.

    It will be interesting as to how the UK court deals with it, as would be commonplace – or some sort of example (under political direction to do so?).

    As for the extradition, we can expect Snowden to see what his future would have been, if he had not got out of the land of “imperial deep state”. But one wonders what grounds the US choose to call for an extradition, and what the UK makes of it.

    The world needed to know, but unfortunately imperial deep state is very much intact.

    Largely because the US Democrat Party offers no resistance to it, and happily sits astride it in government.

  28. johnm 28

    Julian Assange and the Dying of the Light

    https://www.theautomaticearth.com/2018/07/julian-assange-and-the-dying-of-the-light/

    The ideal solution would be if Australia would offer Julian Assange safe passage back home. Another country could do the same. Assange has never been charged with anything, other than the UK’s bail-skipping charge, a minor offence.

    Julian Assange is a journalist, and a damn good one at that. The silence in the Anglo -and international- media about his case is shameful and deafening. So is the smear campaign that’s been going on for over a decade. How many women have been turned against the man by the false Swedish rape charges? Condemning someone to isolation without access to daylight or medical care goes way beyond shameful.

    It’s time to end this horror show, not prolong or deepen it. But the power of international intelligence services is at stake, and they’re going to go to great lengths to impose that power. The US has already even claimed that freedom of speech, i.e. its entire Constitution, does not apply to non-Americans.

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