The London police force has wasted millions of pounds on detaining Assange inside the Ecuadorian embassy for years.
Assange blasted Obama today for lying about his government’s interest in capturing Edward Snowden, the celebrated whistle-blower who exposed Obama’s administration as spying on all Americans (and the rest of the world). The plane of the Bolivian president was denied flight into previously friendly countries and diverted to Austria for an unexpected search!
Topping off the madness of the American President, was news that a listening bug was discovered in the Ecuadorian embassy in London.
Clapper admits to misleading Congress, but claims it was an innocent mistake. What a tool, eh?
Technology and civil liberty experts knew PRISM was a very real possibility. I knew, and wrote about it last August. The National Security Agency (NSA) (star bad guy org. in the Will Smith movie Enemy of the State) has been collecting domestic Americans’ phone and Internet records since at least 2007. This activity is a clear violation of the American Constitution, and was overseen by Bush II, Obama, Al Franken, and other high level leaders who’ve betrayed the trust of Americans and broken the law.
Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME), who also serves on the Senate Intelligence Committee, told Bloomberg that the “[the] idea that a 29-year-old individual with so little experience” had access to the material Snowden did is “absolutely shocking.”
What’s shocking is Senator Collins, who is ignorant as sin. Seven years younger, and a year from a computer science degree, I had similar security clearance to Snowden (in Canada). Of course, I never saw the sort of gross violations of law observed by Snowden, and Canada at that time had an effective Commissioner designed to protect Canadians from secretive surveillance programs that ended up collecting intel from out-of-bounds citizens.
So what can you and I do? Give up Facebook and Skype? Don’t use a Verizon phone at either end of a conversation? Vote Republican? Vote Democrat? Vote Liberal? None of those options will protect you or enhance your life, so what can we do? The party system in the US, and Canada, is not protecting citizens from overbearing governments. The US surveillance state convinced supposed good-guys like Obama and Franken that the illegal spy scheme they inherited wasn’t worth exposing or even shutting down.
We first of all have to defend the people who leak evidence of crimes to responsible media like Glenn Greenwald who helped break this story into the international press.
People like Bradley Manning, and Ed Snowden are people who’ve done heroic things to uphold the highest laws of their country, while people more powerful than them try to use lesser laws to punish their actions.
People may not know exactly why Wikileaks’ founder Julian Assange has been detained in the UK, then trapped in Ecuador’s embassy. The short answer is, because he embarrassed the US military intelligence community, they’ve waged a character assassination war upon him using his casual sex with women against him.
The US wouldn’t extradite him directly from the UK, because they win more discretely by pulling on Sweden’s strings. The US can continue to deny they’ve secretly indicted Assange for something like espionage, for Wikileaks having obtained the Cablegate secret files. If Assange did go to Sweden for questioning, they’d lock him up, without outside communication, charge him, jail him, then deport him to the US who at that time would reveal their sealed indictment. Australia, Assange’s home nation, would stand idly by, continuing to fail to protect him, so Gillard can protect Australia’s submissive intelligence relationship with the US.
“Assange conveniently left [Sweden] before [an interview with the prosecutor] could happen.” Not quite; his lawyer asked if he was wanted for questioning, and the prosecutor declined at that time. He left, after weeks, then was inconveniently called back. He’s been detained by the UK, or under the protection of asylum of Ecuador since 2010, and so the Swedish prosecutor should have gone to where her suspect was since she knows Assange can’t/won’t leave without ending up in a Swedish hole. The prosecutor has travelled abroad in such unusual cases before. She won’t this time because their game is won if Assange is detained and credulous people accept their bogus story.
The big picture is that the US is aiming to shut down Wikileaks through tying up Assange in a compromised justice system that detains people without trial for years (Manning), and hounds hackers to death with the threat of charges and financial ruin if they fight back (Swartz). That’s if their censorious proxy financial blockade doesn’t manage first. Without Wikileaks or similar journalistic organizations, it will be virtually impossible for the people to have intelligence required to subvert authoritarians in our governments and financial-fascist banking systems.
That’s why there are so many good professionals and resources going to defending Assange over these bogus, trumped up allegations of Swedish “rape”. One doesn’t need to know the intricacies of Swedish (or US, or UK) law to see the game afoot. Assange’s sexual habits are not what got him into this mess, they are a side show played up by dangerous parts of the American and related governments. If he’d have abstained from sex, they would have concocted a different plot along these same lines, the truth is not important to those in government seeking the ruin of Assange and Wikileaks. They are quite literally the enemies of truth, and open information.
I wish my title was embellished, but it’s been a crazy 24 hours. The background to this story is that Wikileaks‘ editor Julian Assange is holed up in Ecuador’s embassy in London, waiting for the Ecuadorian President Correa to rule on his asylum bid. It’s expected that asylum will be granted on Thursday. One way or another, the UK has threatened to storm the Ecuadorian embassy and take Assange into their custody for rendition, err… extradition to Sweden for “questioning”. From there, it’s widely expected Assange will be extradited to the USA for torture and eventually death in retribution for unleashing Cablegate.
The whole “Assange is a rapist, and people who support him and Wikileaks supports rape” comments found on Twitter and elsewhere, is propaganda of the worst kind. It’s convincing otherwise intelligent people to put prosecution of sexual misconduct at a higher priority than preserving free speech and democracy! Look at unfree countries and tell me women are treated equal to men or better there.
If political prisoners, like Assange, are not universally defended, then the state will simply accuse anyone it finds a threat as being a sexual deviant. Since propagandized individuals don’t see through that old ploy, they’ll cheer as our top journalists are imprisoned, and weaker journalists shut up to avoid going to jail. Bye bye democracy. Then bye bye feminism.
I’m getting seriously pissed off explaining to people privileged who live in free democratic countries like England, Canada, and New Zealand, that we PROTECT political prisoners, not cheer for their prosecution. We are becoming the bad guys, as western nations. Our moral high ground over China, South Africa, and elsewhere with poor reputations, is rapidly being ceded to pursue a bogus rape charge for the most innovative journalist to make waves in decades.
TonoFonseca 2012/08/15 at 5:51 PM ET:
I never, ever, thought, in a million years, I would be siding with Ecuador against Britain. It is sad how countries like Britain, Canada, and the USA are becoming just like the police states we fought against in WWII and the Cold War.
Last night I spent a little time with some Liberals to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Ralph Goodale noted a few of the other anniversaries coming up this year in his speech to the crowd of about 50 people. I was perhaps the youngest person there. I also met the Saskatchewan Liberal’s new interim leader, Greg Gallagher. Greg is from Crystal Lake, north of Canora.
Here’s what a year can do to editorials. I hope my blog stands the test of time better than this lame opinion piece.
Jet deal could see Grits crash and burn
The Conservative government is striking a sole-source deal with Lockheed Martin for 65 F-35 Lightning II jets worth $16 billion.
The Canadian Military’s current fleet of CF-18 fighter jets — just refurbished for $2.6 billion – are expected to last until 2017. The 65 F-35s have an estimated $9 billion price tag, with 20 years of maintenance and service expected to add $7 billion to the total cost. But the Liberals don’t like the deal.
Their industry critic, MP Marc Garneau, says the contract cannot be allowed because there was no public tender.
His boss, Michael Ignatieff, wants to recall the parliamentary defence committee this summer to debate this matter – especially the deal’s secretive manner.
But a spokesman for Defence Minister Peter MacKay has said it was a competitive process, with two bidders.
Jay Paxton also said the Conservatives aren’t surprised Ignatieff and company are willing to sacrifice the protection of Canadian Military personnel, and jeopardize Canadian sovereignty. The Grits aren’t willing to do this, however, but they are willing to play politics on this issue.
We now know the Conservatives were lying about the number of jets, the price of each jet over its lifetime, and there was no contract to shelter us from price fluctuations.
I turned trash into an iPod. This young woman in Florida turned trash into a house. She wins.
Assange isn’t being helped by Australia because their politicians kiss the “bums” of America.