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Short of Time: Julian Assange at the Westminster Magistrates Court

Binoy Kampmark

Sputnik Photo: Justin Griffiths-Williams/Sputnik/dpa |

London.

Another slot of judicial history, another notch to be added to the woeful record of legal proceedings being undertaken against Julian Assange.  The ailing WikiLeaks founder was coping as well as he could, showing the resourcefulness of the desperate at his Monday hearing.

At the Westminster Magistrates Court, Assange faced a 12-minute process, an ordinary affair in which he was asked to confirm his name, an ongoing ludicrous state of affairs, and seek clarification about an aspect of the proceedings.

Of immediate concern to the lawyers, specifically seasoned human rights advocate Gareth Peirce, was the issue that prison officers at Belmarsh have been obstructing and preventing the legal team from spending sufficient time with their client, despite the availability of empty rooms

“We have pushed Belmarsh in every way – it is a breach of a defendant’s rights.”

Three substantial sets of documents and evidence required signing off by Assange before being submitted to the prosecution, a state of affairs distinctly impossible given the time constraints.

A compounding problem was also cited by Peirce: the shift from moving the hearing a day forward resulted in a loss of time. “This slippage in the timetable is extremely worrying.”

Whether this shows indifference to protocol or malice on the part of prosecuting authorities is hard to say, but either way, justice is being given a good flaying.

The argument carried sufficient weight with District Judge Vanessa Baraitser to result in an adjournment till 2 pm in the afternoon, but this had more to do with logistics than any broader principle of conviction. 

As Baraitser reasoned, 47 people were currently in custody at court; a mere eight rooms were available for interviewing, leaving an additional hour to the day. 

In her view, if Assange was sinned against, so was everybody else, given that others in custody should not be prevented from access to counsel. (This judge has a nose for justice, albeit using it selectively.)

As things stand, Peirce is aiming to finalise the exhibits for submission to the prosecution by January 18.  The government deadline for responding to those documents will be February 7. The case proceeding itself was adjourned till January 23, and Assange will have the choice, limited as it is, of having the hearing at the Westminster Magistrates Court or Belmarsh.

Supporters outside the court were also of same mind regarding the paltry amount of time awarded Assange. 

The rapper M.I.A, showing how support for the publisher can at times be sketchy, managed to have a dig at the state while also acknowledging thanks from it.  (An announcement had just been made that she would be receiving an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.)

I think it is important to follow this case. I am off to get a medal at Buckingham Palace tomorrow and I think today is just as important.  To give somebody an hour to put their case together is not quite right.” Assange supporters would agree with her view that, for “a case of this scale, having only access to two hours to prepare, is illegal in itself.”

The atmosphere around the proceedings has thickened of late, and the WikiLeaks argument here about CIA interference and surveillance conducted by the Spanish firm Undercover Global S.L. while Assange was in the Ecuadorean embassy in London is biting. 

Prior to Christmas he gave testimony to Spanish judge Jose de la Mata claiming he was not aware that cameras installed by the company in the Ecuadorean embassy were also capturing audio details.

Leaving aside the broader issues of free speech, an argument has been made that CIA meddling might well be the fly in the ointment that impairs the prosecution’s case. 

This might be wishful thinking, but this is a line of inquiry worth pursuing. The WikiLeaks legal team is keen to press the matter in February during the extradition hearing.

In the well-considered view of James C. Goodale, former Vice Chairman and General Counsel for The New York Times, “After reading El Pais’s series, you would have to be a dunce not to believe the CIA didn’t monitor Assange’s every move at the Ecuadorean embassy, including trips to the bathroom.”

Goodale cites the Pentagon Papers case as an example that the defence may well draw upon. 

Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked classified Pentagon reports to The Washington Post and The New York Times, had the office of his psychiatrist broken into by President Richard Nixon’s notorious “plumbers”, led by former CIA agent E. Howard Hunt. 

The conscience-stricken analyst was also facing charges under the Espionage Act of 1917. When it came to the trial judge’s attention that government misconduct, including the FBI’s interception of Ellsberg’s telephone conversations with a government official had characterised the entire effort against the whistleblower, the case was dismissed with prejudice.  Ellsberg’s treatment had “offended a sense of justice” and “incurably infected the prosecution”.

As with Assange, the footprint of the CIA in Ellsberg’s case was far from negligible.  It assisted in the muddled break-in. It penned a clumsy psychiatric profile of Ellsberg and assembled a full identification ensemble for the plumbers: Social Security cards, disguises, drivers’ licenses, speech alternation devices. 

As Goodale rhetorically poses, “Can anything be more offensive to a ‘sense of justice’ than an unlimited surveillance, particularly of lawyer-client conversations, livestreamed to the opposing party in a criminal case?” It remains for the British courts to consider whether that degree of offensiveness has been achieved in this case.

Dr. Binoy Kampmark was a Commonwealth Scholar at Selwyn College, Cambridge.  He lectures at RMIT University, Melbourne. Email: [email protected]

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Estaugh
Estaugh
Jan 20, 2020 7:02 PM

* Unlawfully confiscate property
* Falsely arrest a subject
* Falsify records
* Use cruel or unusual punishment to detain an individual
* Fail to keep a person from harm —————————————————————————Color of Law Defined
In law enforcement, there must be checks and balances to ensure officers are acting in a lawful manner when offenders are in their custody. The color of law is that checks and balances system.
The color of law is defined as any authority using his or her power to willfully deprive a person of his or her rights and privileges protected by the U.S. Constitution. It is designed to protect individuals of their rights. Authority figures including police officers, judges, security guards, mayors, city council members, members of Congress must abide by the color of law. Those who break it are charged with a federal crime. —————————————————————————— • Section 242 of Title 18 makes it a crime for a person acting under color of any law to willfully deprive a person of a right or privilege protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States. For the purpose of Section 242, acts under “color of law” include acts not only done by federal, state, or local officials within the their lawful authority, but also acts done beyond the bounds of that official’s lawful authority, if the acts are done while the official is purporting to or pretending to act in the performance of his/her official duties. Persons acting under color of law within the meaning of this statute include police officers, prisons guards and other law enforcement officials, as well as judges, care providers in public health facilities, and others who are acting as public officials. It is not necessary that the crime be motivated by animus toward the race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin of the victim. 
The offense is punishable by a range of imprisonment up to a life term, or the death penalty, depending upon the circumstances of the crime, and the resulting injury, if any. ——————————————————TITLE 18, U.S.C., SECTION 242
* Whoever, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom, willfully subjects any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States, … shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both; and if bodily injury results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; and if death results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include kidnaping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death. Another consideration: ‘Perverting the course of Justice” https://www.lawcom.gov.uk/app/uploads/2016/07/LC.-096-CRIMINAL-LAW-OFFENCES-RELATING-TO-INTERFERENCE-WITH-THE-COURSE-OF-JUSTICE.pdf , What was the business of US officials in the court?

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 18, 2020 12:30 AM

Whether this shows indifference to protocol or malice on the part of prosecuting authorities is hard to say.
I don’t think it’s hard to say at all.
It is neither. It is cowardice in the face of Washington threats and bribes.

CunningLinguist
CunningLinguist
Jan 17, 2020 7:03 AM

Sweden comes out of this affair the worst…Either the allegations had merit, in which case they should still stand, or they didn’t.

The idea that the allegations are somehow time limited, when historic sexual abuse from far earlier is successfully prosecuted shows that Sweden was leaned upon to make false allegations.

Jack_Garbo
Jack_Garbo
Jan 17, 2020 1:00 PM

I’d suggest, so far, Assange comes out far the worst. The Swedes followed CIA orders, since they set up the honeytrap that snared Assange (silly boy…), the “rapee” has since departed back to Israel and her kibbutz, planting vegetables, etc.

CunningLinguist
CunningLinguist
Jan 17, 2020 2:47 PM
Reply to  Jack_Garbo

Reputationally, he doesn’t. The rapist tag doesn’t stick anymore, given how feminist Sweden doesn’t care anymore…

I wasn’t aware that the victim had decamped to Israel …Figures. My car got a puncture today. Bastard Zionists again..

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 19, 2020 12:20 AM

Even your car doesn’t like you, cunning.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 19, 2020 12:19 AM
Reply to  Jack_Garbo

So Assange gets set up in a honey trap, and he comes out ‘…far the worst’??!!

Jack_Garbo
Jack_Garbo
Jan 19, 2020 1:07 AM

Dying in prison is not fun. Who has suffered more?

Martin Usher
Martin Usher
Jan 17, 2020 6:57 AM

Assange’s fate just underscores the totally corrupt nature of our society. You don’t have to like the guy or even what he stands for to underscore that something is very, very, wrong at the core of UK and US society. In today’s USA Assange doesn’t stand a chance — he will be railroaded into oblivion as a warning to others who might follow in his footsteps.

Meanwhile Anne Sacoolas, the wife of the US diplomat who killed a motorcyclist and who fled the scene using dubious diplomatic immunity to leave the country has not only refused to answer charges in the UK but the US government has effectively told the UK government to pound sand. This pretty much says it all about the so-called ‘special relationship’.

paul
paul
Jan 17, 2020 9:56 PM
Reply to  Martin Usher

He was a spook, not a diplomat.

Brian Harry
Brian Harry
Jan 17, 2020 6:42 AM

When you look at the total submission of ALL our(Australia’s) Politicians, and their failure to come to the defence of Assange, you finally realise that the Rich and Powerful have NO interest in “Freedom and Democracy”. Add to that the Massive Tax Evasion going on via Tax Havens all over the World, without a word of condemnation from (again) our GUTLESS politicians, and suddenly you understand that the World is nothing like it is portrayed in the “MEDIA”
We are just cattle, being fed, watered, and kept alive, to keep the Economy on the boil, while our owners rule with an Iron Fist.
Behave yourself, keep your mouth shut and let US get on with it!!

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 18, 2020 12:38 AM
Reply to  Brian Harry

With respect, dear USA – well, actually with the greatest disrespect – no, we won’t let you get on with it.
You’ve had your day.

Brian Harry
Brian Harry
Jan 18, 2020 4:49 AM
Reply to  wardropper

“Behave yourself, keep your mouth shut and let US get on with it!!”

I think you misunderstood me…..I was implying that, that’s what our rulers want us to allow the USA to get away with.

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 18, 2020 6:22 PM
Reply to  Brian Harry

No, I didn’t misunderstand Brian, I just lost my patience with the USA, which is, of course, behind almost all of the world’s current political woes, and decided to castigate the country directly.
This is all very serious material, but I sometimes find it amusing to watch the amazing verbal acrobatics which our rulers and the media have to indulge in, in order to avoid saying it like it is…

Brian Harry
Brian Harry
Jan 18, 2020 7:07 PM
Reply to  wardropper

OK, thanks. The “people” who run the USA appear to have no self awareness at all, or how ridiculous they look to the rest of us.

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 19, 2020 12:06 AM
Reply to  Brian Harry

How true. Frankly I’m beginning to see this in rather satanic terms, and it certainly fits in with what I have heard about the Tibetan monks believing that there are people walking about among us who look human, but are not.
That’s a matter for clairvoyant people to research, but the total lack of a conscience doesn’t fit in with my definition of human. Unfortunately that lack has become a requirement for high political and media office today.

Brian Harry
Brian Harry
Jan 19, 2020 4:17 AM
Reply to  wardropper

The Truth is ugly. I can’t understand why the American people are not outraged by what their government gets up to, regularly. Iraq(Twice) Libya, Syria, Venezuela, etc.
The common denominator in the Middle East is the USA, controlled and operated by Israel, pulling the strings, and nobody can see the bleeding obvious.

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 19, 2020 4:32 PM
Reply to  Brian Harry

I often think it is no more complicated than the fact that the Middle East is so far away from America.
Americans wouldn’t dare to aggravate all those countries if they were right next door…

mikael
mikael
Jan 16, 2020 11:04 PM

The ugly truth is, people, they dont give an rats ass about us, and Assagne is just one whom is lucky enough to be famous, when counteless have been just erazed from this earth.
For how long will we endure this war on us all, how many more must die, captivated or simply just be gone, the powers that rules is to me getting wurse and wurse, and the corruption of souls is become so obvious that we have an world where we fight an uphill battle against the MSM, whom do whatever they can to divert us, fill our lifes with senselessness, selfishness, materialism while the chakles are tightened, and our freedom lesser and lesser, Assagne is our collective shame, the propaganda is about making Him to an criminal while He did the only real thing, the tings that matters for millions, exposing the govs crimes on humanity.

I have problems with debating, because of the constant hammering about the past, while almost nobody wants to talk about the future, climate change, what, when we are going down in flames as we speak, wars everywhere, millions have and will die, and we debate shit from the past.
Look at the case, the obvious contempt they have on us and Assagne, I read in the MSM even in Norway an elite witch is pouring nothing but raw contempt, lies us staight into our faces, and their payed bitches in the comentary field whines about Him and everyone whom is fighting for humanity as scums, russian boots, ugh.. to nazis, and when we state that we didnt do it, the corruption, the love of power, the greed, and imperialism, and yet, even when we and Assagne is right, we will be hunted down, mark my words, the purge is coming.

The definitions of whom is the enemy is contantly widened, and a decade ago, everybody agreed, now, even children is treated like shit, everything, everybody is now an potential terrorist, from animal welfare to fight against war fare.
And we are loosing, Assagne is for me the beacon, among others, but specially, since its so bloody obvious an case where the powers just do what they want, and if we cant reverse that, we will be there to.

I cant do anything, we can do everything.
WE must belive in lojalty, for our children sake and we cant let it go, if not, what else is there.
But hoped the man have the stamina and confidence, to keep your self sane, and never give up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzbcHQPAnYs
May I stay unshaken.
RdR 2

peace

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 17, 2020 7:57 AM
Reply to  mikael

The human race is over. We are like Wile E. Coyote, just after he realises he is standing on thin air, and begins his long descent to the canyon floor. The ecological Holocaust will destroy us this century, if thermo-nuclear or biological warfare doesn’t do it earlier. The prime culprits are the Western Ubumenschen, who refuse to give up their wealth and power, certainly not to the rabble, or to a bunch of ‘mere Asiatics’. The climate destabilisation cataclysm, alone, is irreversible, given the 150 zettajoules of heat sequestered in the oceans over the last 200 years.

Gall
Gall
Jan 17, 2020 8:53 AM

I love your sunny disposition and inherent optimism Richard. Frankly my hero is the Road Runner. Meep, meep.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 19, 2020 12:23 AM
Reply to  Gall

Gall, the first step to the getting of wisdom is the opening of one’s eyes.

Gall
Gall
Jan 19, 2020 7:48 PM

You mean like Wile E Coyote?

nottheonly1
nottheonly1
Jan 17, 2020 10:54 AM

It could very well be that the ‘western human race’ is over. It takes a lot to remove a species that is nearly as proliferated and hardy as Cockroaches.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 19, 2020 12:24 AM
Reply to  nottheonly1

When you breathe in toxic fumes, like the inhabitants of Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne, for long enough, the extinction follows as night the day.

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 19, 2020 12:15 AM

I don’t believe the human race is finished, but it will be interesting to see what contortions it has to go through in order to survive…
If I were Mother Earth, I would be tempted to get into a very large bath of disinfectant tonight and start over again tomorrow morning, but I have a hunch that decent people all over the world are going to have to endure an ever-worsening situation for a good while yet.
Perhaps one day our abject horror and disbelief will turn to concrete action, and we will once again work with our planet and all its wonders, instead of against it.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 19, 2020 12:28 AM
Reply to  wardropper

Just follow the implications of the energy imbalance in the Earth system built up over the last 200 years, the ubiquitous pollution of every sort of toxin and poison inimitable to Life, the rule of Evil, omnicidal, psychopaths and the reality of thermo-nuclear and biological (African Swine Fever, coronavirus in Wuhan)warfare, and keep your ‘optimism’.

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 19, 2020 3:00 AM

Can’t argue with you there.
I have to admit my “optimism” is constantly under severe threat…

nottheonly1
nottheonly1
Jan 17, 2020 10:51 AM
Reply to  mikael

No. It’s not humanity in its entirety that is so psychopathically insane. It is the west. The west is the worst. The west has always been a brakeshoe for human evolution. The kind that matters.

Now to the solution:

Did you see how many millions gathered in Iran to show their respect to the murdered General Suleimani?
Did you realize that this many people assembled in a very short time – because they wanted to be there as fast as possible – together with all the others. Around five million people depending on algorithm.

And there are not five million (or even three) to go to Julian Assange to show him the respect the people have for him while he is still alive? Where is the difference?

The difference in this case is like the question who was there first, the chicken or the egg?

Who was there first? The gullible citizen or the corrupt regime to control him/her?

Iran had a revolution that made sure that they will not succumb to the western brain rot. The west is rotten and irredeemable. It needs to be destroyed by force majeur – before it destroys the entire planet.

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 18, 2020 12:49 AM
Reply to  nottheonly1

You certainly have a point, but five million people very easily succumb to crowd hysteria, and thereby invite the government to deploy crowd-control systems and devices. If those five million had been opposing the government in Iran, I think we would have seen a less peaceable response from the authorities.
My feeling is that those five million grasped an opportunity to show by sheer numbers their utter contempt for “the west” – and with every justification – but you won’t get the people of Britain grasping any such opportunity to enhance democracy or even common decency in such numbers.
Although I suppose they might do so if somebody threatened to dissolve Manchester City or Liverpool FCs…

MASTER OF UNIVE
MASTER OF UNIVE
Jan 16, 2020 8:22 PM

Civilization seems to forget history when they rely on MSM for memory. Assange is being held up as example for the contemporary activists that are toying with the idea of becoming Assange 2.0 ‘the revenge of the cyber-Nerds’.

Constitutionally speaking, the public has a right to lawfully form demonstrations against his incarceration & unlawful detention by so-called ‘authorities’ that no longer have authority over decisions that are made by those that are dedicated to overthrowing adhocracy meted out by criminals controlling matters of state that are out of their jurisdiction.

As MASTER OF UNIVERSE I hereby declare the Government of the UK & the Government of the United States of America out of order in the matter of detention of Julian Assange.

Julian Assange is now free to be released from detention in Belmarsh, and his unlawful captors are to be arrested & detained for further questioning at my earliest convenience.

Signed, MASTER OF UNIVERSE

MOU

Frank Speaker
Frank Speaker
Jan 16, 2020 6:54 PM

Excellent comments below especially from Harry and BigB.

I cannot add anything worthwhile, other than to express my solidarity with all those speaking out against the complete injustice against him, and indeed others, inflicted by our once-democratic States, which are now transformed to be, de facto, fascist in their nature.

Looking back, we are in effect similar to the German people who didn’t see what was happening, or do anything, until it was all too late. Softly, softly, little step by little step, the fascists have taken over.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:17 PM
Reply to  Frank Speaker

Fascism is corporatism plus State power, according to Mussolini. Have you ever noticed the numerous, some huge, depictions of the fasces in the US Capitol building? Capitalism is fascism, either ‘friendly’ when the parasites are threatened, or not so, when they feel secure, as now.

paul
paul
Jan 16, 2020 4:12 PM

Assange deserves everything he gets. He is a complete scoundrel. He revealed the truth about all the war crimes committed by the US and its satellites, their torture gulag, blanket spying and surveillance and propaganda campaigns. That is quite unforgiveable. We should all welcome the fact that he will shortly be freighted off to Langley to receive justice for his crimes before a secret court, followed by 400 years in the cell next to Manning. Justice must be seen to be done.

Brian Harry
Brian Harry
Jan 17, 2020 6:19 AM
Reply to  paul

I voted that up, when I realised that you were actually pointing out what A–Holes our “Leaders” are……”Freedom and Democracy” is what we Haven’t got

davemass
davemass
Jan 16, 2020 1:43 PM

If the Russians did this or the Chinese, the MSM, US, UK governments would be jumping up and down.
As a Brit I am ashamed of my country, and it’s become a cesspit.
They won’t be happy till he’s dead ‘pour decourager les autres’?
Watch out for an ‘Epstein’ moment…

JudyJ
JudyJ
Jan 16, 2020 5:42 PM
Reply to  davemass

A few days ago on the BBC late night paper review Digby Jones and Henry Bonsu were discussing Carlos Ghosn and his ‘flight’ to Lebanon from Japan. Digby Jones questioned who could blame him: “He isn’t a threat to anyone and the charges were minor in the scheme of things. He would have been kept in solitary with no visitors allowed and could potentially have been ‘banged up’ for life. You can’t blame him for fleeing from that and wanting to come to a democracy which has a fairer judicial system and doesn’t have an extradition treaty with Japan where the justice system is politically driven”. … I waited with interest, and in hope, but there was absolutely no acknowledgement by Jones, Bonsu or the presenter of the parallels with Julian Assange. The absolute hypocrisy was there for all to see.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:20 PM
Reply to  JudyJ

Cut ’em some slack, Judy. One word out of place, one sign of ideological unreliability, and your career is OVER.

wardropper
wardropper
Jan 18, 2020 12:55 AM

They could always take up a noble profession instead.
Like journalism, for example…

Brian Harry
Brian Harry
Jan 17, 2020 6:27 AM
Reply to  davemass

Except that Assange is likely to really be dead, unlike Epstein…..who has powerful friends in powerful places….

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 17, 2020 8:03 AM
Reply to  davemass

A ‘cess-pit’? That’s an insult to shit!

BigB
BigB
Jan 16, 2020 1:08 PM

Everyone knows this is a moral and juridical outrage. I’m not sure everyone knows why? If I can draw an analytical distinction, after Bourdieu …in the ‘field of politics’ there was the habituated compulsion to vote to constitute the social institutional construction – the ‘juridial person’ – that is the State. To which we transfer legal-rational representative and decision-making powers. In the ‘field of jurisprudence’: that self-same State exercises those powers reprehensibly …which all can see with rightful moral indignation. But can you see what happened – as if by smoke and mirrors? All self-responsibility disappeared between imaginary social fields. That is one way power works. By distancing us from our own self-alienated powers.

This is not, for me, some abstruse sociological distinction. There is a very real disconnection between how the State is co-constituted and legitimated by us …and what the State does: which is disowned by the self-same people who – last month – socially constructed the State. Analytical distinctions aside: we are the State. It is a form of self-persecution that becomes highlighted and embodied by the extremised statist torture of Julian. For which we rightfully do not want to take responsibility. So we re-represent the State as ‘Johnson’s’ or the ‘Tory’ State to mask what would otherwise be self-loathing. But in creating a representational Fetish to which we transfer contempt – we do ourselves no political favours when we come to re-constitute the State again. Perhaps we should deconstruct the transmission of power through society and take ownership of the right to juridicial, bureaucratic administrative, and executive authoritarian decision-making powers we abnegated and abdicated to the State?

Where attention goes, connection grows. This is modified neural-political Hebb’s Law. The more social fields we can integrate and connect to the social construction of the State: the less we need the State. Who, at this time, feels that they could not enact a more just, humane, and compassionate response than the State – on our behalf – is meting out? And if the State has so corrupted and alienated our own creative and human compassionate judgmental powers – do we need the State as a juridical intercessor of our rightful jurisprudence? No, we do not. Here is the perfect bifurcation event for us to consider the hierarchical power structures we voluntaristically co-create to submit to. Why: is the self-vocalised liberational question?

Julian is and should be a free man. The truth has been criminalised not by the apparition we call the State (which is an imaginary ideal type) …but by the ‘juridical person’ we are a co-constitutive party to. If we do not like its alienated agency and dispossessed agentive power: perhaps we should consider a different form of humanist socialised authority and organisation with a value-ethics and compassionate morality closer to our own?

The capitalist-market-corporate-state-juridical monopoly of justice is opposed to humanity. It always was. Perhaps we can share in that vision now before we commit the cardinal sin against humanity of co-constituting the ‘Juridical Impersonation’ of the State that auto-oppresses us? If we want a judicial power and justice with compassion – we are going to have to author it ourselves. We are all Julian now. We are all subject to a foreign and alienated power we legitimated just a month ago. And – due to short-termism – we have already forgotten the how and the why. Here is the wake-up reminder.

Antonym
Antonym
Jan 16, 2020 11:25 AM

The CIA: “we cheated, we lied, we stole” + we assassinated a US president, spied on and cheated Congress and Senate etc. spy on all US citizen etc. etc. BUT failed to predict the end of the Cold War, 9/11, Pakistan’s nuclear bomb for missiles tech deal with North Korea, the Libya mess etc.

George Cornell
George Cornell
Jan 16, 2020 11:39 AM
Reply to  Antonym

Ant, is that really you? Have an upvote on me.

Protect
Protect
Jan 16, 2020 2:14 PM
Reply to  Antonym

2 lists, one of successes and one of failures. umm .. Which list would Israel’s nukes be in?

paul
paul
Jan 16, 2020 4:42 PM
Reply to  Antonym

Yes, terrible record of failure.

paul
paul
Jan 16, 2020 4:45 PM
Reply to  paul

Together with the inability to discover anything whatever about the Zionist Regime’s huge illegal arsenal of 400 nuclear warheads targeted at all its neighbours, and its huge stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons.

paul
paul
Jan 16, 2020 4:47 PM
Reply to  paul

Or about its spying campaigns and thefts of US military secrets.

paul
paul
Jan 16, 2020 4:48 PM
Reply to  paul

Or about its massacre of the crew of USS Liberty and 3,000 people on 9/11.

Mike Ellwood
Mike Ellwood
Jan 16, 2020 8:07 PM
Reply to  Antonym

Compare with Peter Wright (MI5)’s ““We bugged and burgled our way across London.”

Wright may have been a fantasist, but I doubt he was making this up. And if they could do that then, what could they be doing now, given the advances in technology since those days?

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:22 PM
Reply to  Antonym

One phone call to the MOSSAD and the CIA could have gained all the details on 9/11.

harry law
harry law
Jan 16, 2020 11:23 AM

Under the UK/US Extradition Treaty Article 4.
Extradition shall not be granted if the offense for which extradition is requested is a political offense.

Common political crimes include bribery, treason, sedition, espionage, theft, perjury, human rights violations, and whistle blowing.

In criminology, a political crime is an act or omission prejudicial to the interests of the state or government like espionage, sedition and treason. Political crimes generally arise from political disturbances. It includes offenses arising from attack on the political order.
All the above are included in the US indictments against Julian Assange https://www.justice.gov/opa/press-release/file/1153486/download
They are Political offences and therefore NON EXTRADITABLE.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:30 PM
Reply to  harry law

That will be ignored, with jurisprudential contempt.

Pyewacket
Pyewacket
Jan 16, 2020 10:33 AM

Whether the shoddy treatment meted out to Julian and his team is due to protocol or malice, is a good question. My bet though, is that it’s been malice all the way, and even more so, since he was lifted from the Ecaudorian Embassy. Nothing in his treatment can be considered proportionate as relevant to his only crime, which was failing to answer bail. This has been, and continues to be a nasty, vindictive stitch up of a good and brave man.

Protect
Protect
Jan 16, 2020 2:11 PM
Reply to  Pyewacket

Caution: “protocol or malice” ????

Condemned to solitary confinement, tortured and drugged, becoming frail while still in his forties and denied of the chance and tools to defend himself. All for revealing the truth as a jounalist and publisher. And here is someone not sure if the ongoing punishment is Protocol or Malice. Wake up, what’s wrong with you?!

Harry Stotle
Harry Stotle
Jan 16, 2020 10:18 AM

Jess Phillips, prospective Labour leader said,
‘Finally Julian Assange, everyone’s least favourite squatter, has been kicked out of the Ecuadorian embassy and into custody… I am sure we will all miss his speeches from the balcony of the embassy as if he were about to launch into Don’t Cry For Me Argentina.’

Unlike Chris Williamson, Phillips was not sanctioned for this vile remark (Chris, BTW is the only Labour MP to strongly support Julian) while John McDonnell said would he warmly accept Alastair Campbell back into the Labour fold and that Tony Blair was NOT a war criminal.

Moving on: the legal profession has largely ignored serious allegations about Britain’s terrible mishandling of this case, made by ‘UN rapporteur on torture’, Nils Melzer.

Melzer poignantly says “Despite the complexity of the proceedings against him led by the world’s most powerful Government, Mr. Assange’s access to legal counsel and documents has been severely obstructed, thus effectively undermining his most fundamental right to prepare his defence,” – and – “The blatant and sustained arbitrariness shown by both the judiciary and the Government in this case suggests an alarming departure from the UK’s commitment to human rights and the rule of law.”
https://www.ohchr.org/en/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=25249

So an alarming departure from the UK’s commitment to human rights and the rule of law – hardly something for the legal profession to be proud of, is it?

Meanwhile at that bastion of intellectual freedom, the Guardian, we were subject to article after article that might as well of been written at Langley given the lack of balance and objectivity they contained.
Marina Hyde’s odious efforts to see the funny side of torture was especially reprehensible, and who can forget the simpering James Ball who said Assange was free to leave Ecuador’s embassy whenever he pleased before being famously put in his place by Nils Melzer, who said, ‘with all due respect, Sir: Mr Assange was about as “free to leave“ as a someone sitting on a rubberboat in a sharkpool’.

In short Julian Assange has been utterly abandoned by the British establishment proving, if proof were needed that there is little, if anything, that will force them to reassess their relationship with the US killing machine, or the untold harm it has caused, or how their weakness perpetuate the very things they claim to be horrified by (such as indiscriminate killings, political chaos, and the destruction of once beautiful cities).

Chilcots expensive and long-winded report has done absolutely nothing to change this fundamental dynamic – until those in power understand that it is not Julian Assange who has committed any crime but those he has exposed, it might as well be used as toilet paper.

In my opinion you either on the right or wrong side of this moral and political line.

So if you want to you can align yourself with Phillips, the hanging judges, Hyde and Ball, or all the other comprised actors in this tragedy, like Sajid David who, when Home Secretary, couldn’t wait to hand Assange over to the American’s quickly enough – but who in their right mind would want to be associated with this motley collection of scumbags, eh?

Gezzah Potts
Gezzah Potts
Jan 16, 2020 10:51 AM
Reply to  Harry Stotle

Excellent comment Harry, you sum it up perfectly. Julian Assange has also been utterly abandoned by the cowardly, snivelling Australian establishment, tho they’re mindful of not upsetting the American ‘alliance’ and their pals like Pompeo.
Regards creatures like Phillips and Hyde, scumbags is almost too polite a word.

Protect
Protect
Jan 16, 2020 11:29 AM
Reply to  Gezzah Potts

Bill Shorten, who was inches from becoming the leader of the country:

I’m not sure Australia has any power to resolve this matter

The slime is not sure what Australia can do to save one the his brightest compatriots.

Gezzah Potts
Gezzah Potts
Jan 16, 2020 12:16 PM
Reply to  Protect

Shorten… Complete dog. End of.
Just one of a long line of fake, phoney, power hungry opportunists since Hawke became Prime Minister.
Labor hasn’t been remotely Labor since Gough Whitlam was PM.
Now its full of Neoliberal cheering careerists eyeing up plum corporate jobs once their public service (ha ha ha) is completed.
And as for those arch defenders of the ‘working class’ such as heavyweight Union officials like Paul Howes, Martin Ferguson, Greg Combet, et Al.
Where are they all now? All in cushy corporate consultancy jobs.
So much for the working class. So much for Julian Assange.
My contempt for this bunch of vapid weasals is almost bottomless. Oh yeah, how often did Shorten visit his mates at the United States Consulate? Thanks to Wikileaks we know what they got up too.

Protect
Protect
Jan 16, 2020 2:24 PM
Reply to  Gezzah Potts

He decided to spend hiw waking time chasing his own tail, all in the interest of National Security. Perhaps ‘power hungry’ isn’t one of his attributes.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:41 PM
Reply to  Gezzah Potts

Howes, and Marrun Fungusson, in particular, are as filthy sell-outs, Labor rats, as is imaginable. But Labor produces rats as a dog does fleas.

Gezzah Potts
Gezzah Potts
Jan 16, 2020 9:55 PM

That’s why I used them as examples.
The lowest of the low. Like Shorten.
All disseminators of lies and bullshit in the full service to the Empire and Big Business.
Your comment below further illustrates the moral and ethical bankruptcy of creatures like Shorten.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:39 PM
Reply to  Protect

Shorten was shown in some Wikileaks documents to be a ‘protected source’ or whatever of the US Embassy. He was also a pet Sabbat Goy of Jewish billionaire Pratt. He led the knife party that despatched Kevin Rudd in 2010, as Rudd proved unreliable in the war preparations against China, and had upset Israel by expelling a MOSSAD agent from the Israeli Embassy in Canberra after the MOSSAD stole Australian passport identities for its murder operations overseas, after previously ‘promising’ not to do so again, after a previous such episode. That expulsion was recommended by our US-controlled ‘intelligence’ agencies, so was probably a set-up. Shorten is shite.

Lysias
Lysias
Jan 16, 2020 10:57 PM

I recently learned that John Kerr was in “Australian” intelligence during WW2. No wonder the U.S. intel community considered him “our man”.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 17, 2020 8:07 AM
Reply to  Lysias

Clyde Cameron knew that and warned Whitlam about appointing Kerr, but Whitlam arrogantly thought that he could control Kerr. He was wrong.

BigB
BigB
Jan 16, 2020 11:57 AM
Reply to  Harry Stotle

Unfortunately, Harry, 31mn people are on the wrong side of the moral and political line. The State is using our own self-alienated powers against us and against Julian. Which is the ongoing point I have been trying to expose: we are the State. It is a co-constituted institutionalised social construct and imaginary social reality we voluntaristically submit to. When it acts in a morally reprehensible way – which is what States do – we further devolve ourselves from our own creative powers by masking the States co-constitution …which is the reification of our own alienated shared belief.

Admittedly, bringing this to light in the run up to last months election makes inevitable the social habitus of the compulsion to vote. But there is time now to reflect on what it means to alienate our own creativity and abdicate our own morality and value-ethical choice to the co-constituted State. The State does not act on our General Will or Common Good: it acts against it. It always has and always will. Which pulls the General Intellect away from humanistic value-judgements in order to continue to justify the periodic re-constitution of the State. In short, we need to deconstruct State power and expose its legitimising lies: because, unfortunately, 31mn people just invested the State with the rational-legal power to do this. If we are serious about prevention, we need a radical reboot of true authority, jurisprudence, and executive power …which is and can only ever be our own. Why do we give it away?

Also, highly unfortunately, Chris is no longer a Labour MP. Or any sort of MP. He even lost his deposit. Lord only knows if is staunch defence of Julian had anything to do with his no-platforming: but I suspect it did.

paul
paul
Jan 16, 2020 4:51 PM
Reply to  Harry Stotle

Isn’t our Jess lovely? Tory MPs would “walk over hot coals” for her.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:33 PM
Reply to  Harry Stotle

Hyde is a truly Evil, despicable, snide, Guardian feminazi (expletive deleted). Stomach-turning nasstiness.

George Mc
George Mc
Jan 16, 2020 11:13 PM
Reply to  Harry Stotle

Jess Phillips represents the new brand of post-Blair politician: brain dead and soul dead but with just the right amount of chummy pop-culture smartness to hook in the gullible.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 17, 2020 8:09 AM
Reply to  George Mc

One by one every decent person is being purged from politics, to be replaced by scum, the ‘antisemitism’ smear being the chief means of achieving this social euthanasia.

George Mc
George Mc
Jan 17, 2020 10:27 PM

And one effect of this is to create an ever widening gap between the British population and their so-called representatives. The vast majority of people couldn’t care less about anti-Semitism, identity politics or any of the other prissy archaic irrelevances that obsess the emerging i.e. increasingly stunted political class. But then again the British population have never been the issue as far as the political system is concerned – this system only existing for the tiniest minority at the top and it is this minority that the political class must serve.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 19, 2020 12:33 AM
Reply to  George Mc

The vast amount of people know that Jews are human beings like the rest of us, some good, some bad, some indifferent. That they are being RELENTLESSLY brainwashed to see them as uniformly alike, veritable ‘Gods Upon the Earth;, even as they slaughter Gazan children, can only breed resentment and antipathy, but THAT is precisely what the Zionists and Judeofascists want.

David Macilwain
David Macilwain
Jan 17, 2020 7:18 AM
Reply to  Harry Stotle

I’d only criticise on one a point – that Britain “mishandled” Assange’s case. Perhaps it was shorthand, but we need to understand that judicial process has not been perverted or mishandled – it doesn’t exist. This court is – appropriately enough, a kangaroo court, trying to convict a political prisoner who has committed no legally definable crime.
In three days time, Brits who haven’t yet seen Official Secrets will be able to, following its delayed release. They will then understand what the “Westminster system” is all about.

Loverat
Loverat
Jan 16, 2020 8:51 AM

I saw a clip somewhere of the BBC interviewing Assange’s spokesman. He was saying how badly treated Assange was. The interviewer getting flustered saying something like ‘ it’s the legal process’ and ‘Assange was evading justice’. The spokesman handled these objections well. But I think the main points are the legal system in this case has been clearly hijacked. That’s obvious as I’ve never seen English law applied in this way with the conflicts of interest and behaviour of the presiding judge. Secondly, Assange skipped bailed and seeked asylum because he was in fear of his liberty and life.

Watching the proceedings is like being transported 330 years back to the Judge Jeffries trials – or more recent history – the German judge presiding over those who attempted to kill Hitler in 1944.

My question, and I’m not a lawyer but know enough and followed enough case managment to be aware the legal system has obviously been got at.

Where on earth are the lawyers who work in the profession? Why are they largely silent watching the law be manipulated to persecute someone guilty of exposing war crimes?

Too afraid to speak out?

Grafter
Grafter
Jan 16, 2020 1:30 PM
Reply to  Loverat

The BBC are part of the Establishment scum. Don’t pay their “licence fee”.

KarenEliot
KarenEliot
Jan 16, 2020 7:21 PM
Reply to  Grafter

“don’t pay the Regime’s Propaganda Tax”… there, fixed it for you 🤪

I have to say the streaming services are just as bad in terms of a lot of their content e.g. a recent Netflicks show called Messiah featured a CIA analyst as the heroine. embedded assumptions that “we know best and we will do exactly what we want”, crude racist stereotypes, and Assad Is A Butcher mise en scene, etc etc. ten minutes of their dreck was enough to literally make my flesh creep.

Thank Providence for books and of course OffG

paul
paul
Jan 16, 2020 4:53 PM
Reply to  Loverat

I believe in the Rule of Law and our Independent Judiciary.
I also believe in pixies, elves, and Father Christmas.

nottheonly1
nottheonly1
Jan 16, 2020 6:55 PM
Reply to  Loverat

Where on earth are the lawyers who work in the profession? Why are they largely silent watching the law be manipulated to persecute someone guilty of exposing war crimes?

Specifically: Where are the ‘Pro Bono’ Lawyers?

However, I will shorten the path to the truth. Lawyers are part of the problem, and only in rare instances instrumental in the solution as to defend the weaker against the stronger and the masses against the few.

They are silent, because they (where applicable) are such an elemental part of ‘the rich stealing the money of the poor’ scheme, that they better be silent, since – what happens to Julian Assange right now – is happening in one form or another to no income and low income members of society. Rarely are lawyers standing up for what is just. But for what brings reputation and popularity. Money and influence.

Why is there no AI directed to explore based on existing laws, how many of them were broken and/or bent, mutilated and desecrated?

Alexa, why is Julian Assange not a free man giving book signings like the people he uncovered to be war criminals?

Mike Ellwood
Mike Ellwood
Jan 16, 2020 8:19 PM
Reply to  nottheonly1

However, I will shorten the path to the truth. Lawyers are part of the problem, and only in rare instances instrumental in the solution as to defend the weaker against the stronger and the masses against the few.

This was made clear in that great (if depressing) UK TV series from 1978 “Law and Order” (not the American one of the same name). Written by G.F. Newman.

From Wikipedia:

Law & Order (often referred to as Law and Order) is a British television crime drama series, comprising four connected plays written by G. F. Newman and directed by Les Blair, which was first transmitted on 6 April 1978 on BBC Two. Each of the four stories within the series were told from a different perspective, including that of the Detective, the Villain, the Brief and the Prisoner.[1] The series was highly controversial upon its release due to its depiction of a corrupt British law enforcement and legal system.[2]

In 2009, G.F. Newman stated that he considered “90% of police to be corrupt at the time, and that there has been no significant change since then.”

The story depicts how a known criminal is “fitted up” for a crime he did not commit, by corrupt Flying Squad detectives, because “it was his turn”. We see the same story from the point of view of the police, of the “villain”, of the “brief” (lawyer), and of the “villain” once he is “inside”. It shows the defence lawyer cosying up to the prosecution lawyers, and missing opportunities to prove his client’s innocence.

nottheonly1
nottheonly1
Jan 17, 2020 2:01 AM
Reply to  Mike Ellwood

Yes, I remember that. I also remember that television was qualitatively so much better then. The show gave reason to believe, that the bad reputation that is attached to the second oldest profession on earth, is fully deserved.

richard le sarc
richard le sarc
Jan 16, 2020 8:51 PM
Reply to  Loverat

It’s that ‘Rule of Law’ that the fascistic thug scum rioting and destroying in Hong Kong are longing for.

MASTER OF UNIVE
MASTER OF UNIVE
Jan 17, 2020 12:21 AM
Reply to  Loverat

The Assange Case is for BIG Law litigators that realize they need approximately $50 million retainer to take on the conundrum. Big Law litigators are waiting for ground swell from the throngs of Assange supporters that are willing to start a GO-FUND-ME for his defense. Currently, his legal counsel is pro bono gratis stuff, but that ain’t near enough to take on The Man, man.

Option #1 is best for the establishment, but Option #2 is Civil Disobedience just like that old hack Thoreau, Henry, David said, eh.

I like Option #2 because The Man needs to understand that we can replace him with a trained monkey if we want to.

MOU

Protect
Protect
Jan 16, 2020 7:58 AM

Australian Elites, from both liberal and labor, strongly believe in the fairness and robustness of the British justice system.

George Cornell
George Cornell
Jan 16, 2020 11:40 AM
Reply to  Protect

The Tooth Fairy must have a large following there too.