I wonder, is there no blowback among Brits for the Crown so baldly adopting the role of America's attack dog? Or is that de rigueur now?
It is bordering on the farcical how much money they have spent on this and just because of that they eventually have to show a result. The only other alternative is that Assange leaves the embassy in a coffin.
I'm pretty sure that if this was an actual option that the Ecuadorians would have jumped at it.
> In 1964, a Moroccan-born Israeli double agent named Mordechai Ben Masoud Louk (also known as Josef Dahan) was drugged, bound, and placed in a diplomatic mailing crate at the Egyptian Embassy in Rome, but was rescued by Italian authorities. The box that he had been sealed into "had almost certainly been used before for human cargo," including possibly for an Egyptian military official who had defected to Italy several years before but then disappeared without a trace before reappearing under Egyptian custody and facing trial.
> In the 1984 Dikko Affair, a former Nigerian government minister, Umaru Dikko, was kidnapped and placed in a shipping crate in an attempt to transport him from the United Kingdom back to Nigeria for trial. However, it was not marked as a diplomatic bag, which allowed British customs to open it.
The Egyptian diplomatic box "almost certainly" worked as intended, and it is quite believable that the Nigerian diplomatic crate would have worked without the obvious omission.
Either way, I strongly suspect the UK government not to be so stupid not to check any container large enough to contain an Assange shaped object that is marked as diplomatic mail from the embassy in London to the home country.
It makes for a nice movie plot but it would be pretty shoddy if they went for it.
The correct place to answer the justice question is in a law court.
Basically you're asking the UK to [publicly and openly] forgo the rule of law.
Yes, it's highly annoying that Assange's actions have led to this cost in seeking to fulfil the warrant to have him answer for this alleged crime. But I can't see how we can maintain rule of law if we let people who have allegations to answer in court simply hunker down for a bit and avoid having to do so.
The British legal system may look like idiots to you, but that's immaterial. What they look like if the let Assange walk free is a system in which the rule of law doesn't apply to people who can muster the right social supporters.
Should we let all departments operate without budget considerations? For road and rail maintenance, is it acceptable to simply let some problems be left alone if the cost goes beyond budget?
Police do not spend infinitive amount of resources on all crimes. Those 10M+ represent assaults that don't get investigated, ironically also sexual assaults. How many future crimes, murders, rapes, or theft is the UK allowing because funding to stop those criminals are being spent on this single case?
The Assange case is like the government building a hospital in the middle of London, employing thousands of employees and treating exactly 1 patient. Telling them to not do so is not to forgo having health care or telling them to disband government, but rather demanding that government funding is held to some minimal standard.
Can we have a rule of law while accused criminals of crimes that has a maximum of 4 years jail time, who then can run to a embassy, be granted asylum, and 8 years later have the case dropped? Is that such an massive loophole? How many potential criminals should we expect to use such loophole over the next 100 years? My prediction: 1 if we count this case.
It should be clear to all parties by now that nothing is to be gained from continuing it and yet it is continued.
I totally understand the British governments perspective.
The resource-usage is wasteful to the point of irresponsible.
It appears that Assange can be tried for "Bail, failure to surrender". (Maximum 3 months sentence unless sent for trial.) I'm not aware that he's be charged with anything else, so, on the face of it, the money could have been more usefully dispersed to protect the public.
Agreed, but that's not how the law works. The law should prosecute everybody they have on their lists, regardless of the economics, it should be a matter of principle rather than one of cost-benefit analysis.
Not saying that this isn't how it often turns out to be, but that's how it should be.
Another alternative (to a coffin) is the expiration of the statute of limitations on the charges against Assange. Britain may choose to refile/renew them indefinitely, but it now appears that they'll do so alone, without collaboration from Sweden. I think eventually the political odor of this will sufficiently embarrass the Brit electorate and the CPS' charges will finally expire, with more whimper than bang.
Comparing Assange to Dreyfus is obscene.
The longer the investigation into Russian involvement in the US elections goes on the less Assange looks like a brave leaker and more like a (voluntary or otherwise) Russia apologist.
Go to an extradition treaty country? Clock keeps running.
Go somewhere that you "can't be reached"? Clock is paused.
Again, similar reasoning. At least in the UK.
(EDIT: changed "committed" to "accused" as per discussion below)
In light of Assange's political activity, and now the astonishing level of CPS persistence in pursuing him, the Swedish charge against him appears: 1) awfully convenient, 2) increasingly implausible (i.e. politically trumped up), and of course, 3) not a crime until his guilt is proven.
To look at your logic in the reverse direction, you are basically implying that in light of Assange's political activity he cannot be credibly accused of any crime, because it will be a false accusation trumped up by state actors.
That doesn't stand up to any logical scrutiny. Just because it could be the case doesn't mean that it is. It doesn't mean it isn't either, but you can't just assume it is because it is "strikingly convenient".
No, he has never been charged, he is wanted for questioning regarding an accusation of rape. Funny is that he was already questioned for that exact accusation BEFORE he left Sweden, then he was told to return for further questioning.
Also the first prosecutor immediately dropped it, then another prosecutor decided to re-open it, which is very unusual.
As for the actual rape accusation: first they had sex, then the woman says she fell asleep and awoke from him entering her, she asked if he was wearing anything (protection) and he said 'only you'. She stated that she was too tired to argue so they had sex.
Next day they joked about him having to pay her student loans should she get pregnant, and naming the kid 'Afghanistan'. He was to go on a meeting in Stockholm so she gave him a ride down to the train station on her bike, and then paid his ticket since he didn't have any swedish currency. Later after talking with friends, she realized that she had been subjected to a crime and went to the police station.
This is the actual rape allegation (in swedish): https://info.publicintelligence.net/AssangeSexAllegations.pd...
I think the guy could be called one of the biggest assholes. But let's not add to be pile of rubbish and defamation that deliberatley has been amassed regarding this case.
Having sex with an unconscious person, even someone asleep, is against the law in some jurisdictions. Really depends on how they define consent (in England's case sleep is "black-letter" lack of consent).
Specific to England: https://www.cps.gov.uk/legal-guidance/rape-and-sexual-offenc...
The allegation is not that he had intercourse with someone unconscious.
The allegation is that he re-initiated sexual relations with a coitus partner who was initially asleep and who then woke up, asked about a condom, then later regretted not stopping because of the lack of a condom.
There is a distinct legal difference between non-consensual intercourse with someone drugged or passed out and engaging in petting of a naked person who did the naked-nasty with you a few hours ago to see if they're keen on round 2...
And that right there makes it non-consensual. The law (in England and other jursidictions) specifically mention asleep (amongst other conditions) that render a person unable to consent to sex.
Once Assange stuck his penis into a sleeping woman's vagina means he's guilty.
Um, the Supreme Court's view was that under English law what he was accused of would be rape.
No, I think he was implying that until he's been successfully using the phrase "a crime that was committed" is premature. It is still alleged.
If you want to know who did say "in light of Assange's political activity this crime is likely not credible" well... that would inconveniently be GCHQ:
>That doesn't stand up to any logical scrutiny
Straw men usually don't.
Of course it is, Assange never came in for questioning! That's the reason people are arrested: so that they can be charged. Since he evaded arrest, he hasn't been charged. It's absurdly circular logic to suggest that this implies innocence.
You did a little more than imply he was guilty. You directly called him guilty when you used the phrase "a crime was committed".
You are now contradicting yourself by agreeing that the crime was alleged.
(it certainly wasn't directly calling him guilty in any case - people are arrested "in connection" to crimes all the time without being accused of being the perpetrator of that crime)
Where the crime is known while the criminal is not this is true.
Not to mention the other glaring hole in some of this, those that believe it was a plot, a smear.
Really? A state attempts to destroy someone's character and credibility and the best they can manage in their set-up of him is "may have had 'sleepy sex' with someone while lying about a condom"?
Not much of a smear. Politicians are accused of far worse every day in the US and many times it barely affects their career, if at all.
I realize people like to joke that governments/security/intelligence services are "bozos", but I've never had any patience for the "it was all a smear to destroy him".
Worked like a charm, didn't it?
I remember it being brought up. People immediately believed it. A more serious accusation (say, a murder) wouldn't be so easy to buy.
Or it could just be him raping or sexually assaulting two women in Sweden and the police and prosecution wanting to follow their rules and interview him about it.
1) He is not accused of that
2) If we're gonna translate legal charges we should be consistent and honest -- Assange is accused of what the rest of the world calls 'sexual misconduct'
3) This article is showing the intense and continued irregularities in this case that are so large as to be visible from orbit. Even if Assange is guilty as fuck it does not change the verifiable nature of "special" treatment he has received, implying a strong political motive
4) Conspiracy is a collaborative effort to break or subvert the law -- the national governments pissed off at Assange are asserting preferential treatment to support a political end. That's sketchy, and maybe scary, and maybe immoral, but totally legal.
5) US military and top leadership gets egg on face in every paper in the world at the same time, and gets nailed by every diplomat in the world at the same time, and... what? Says 'no biggie' and walks away? ... That is improbable. That would be historically uncharacteristic.
2) Now you're being dishonest with your translation. Julian was accused of "Olaga tvång", "sexuellt ofredande" and "våldtäkt". If you want to translate "sexuellt ofredande" to sexual misconduct I guess that's fine but it seems most news papers translate it to sexual molestation or sexual assault. "Våldtäkt" cannot be translated to anything other than rape.
3-5) This is more conspiracy theories. The only special treatment Assange has gotten is by Ecuador and large part of the internet that claims the US is behind all this.
2) I have read the entire allegation and accordant police reports, på svenska, in the allegers own words. Våldtäkt directly and literally translates to rape, yes. Know of any examples where direct and literal translations don't work? ... You have not understood my point and answered another. His alleged behaviour is described as sexual misconduct for english speakers the world over. This point is brought up many times in this thread and whenever the case is discussed, it's equally disingenuous each time its wilfully conflated.
3-5) I have directly addressed the fallacious use of the word "conspiracy" in this context. I have shown explicit objective facts, including those detailed in this threads article, to articulated a highly unspeculative pattern of behaviour with deep historical precedent and blatant irregularities. You have dismissed that without addressing any of the content or fact and proffered a verifiably untrue assertion in return.
You have not read what you have responded to, or not taken the time to think it through.
Seek first to understand, then to shitpost ;)
It was not "trumped up". It was followed up on disproportionately, but let's not pretend there's no substance there.
And it's hard to hold a trial to prove his guilt when he's hiding in an embassy closet.
Not setting that precedent is likely one of the main reasons the UK wasted so much money on policing.
They're members of Five Eyes and NATO. So yes, they do have a "personal stake".
Australian Defence Force troops, for example, are a puppet military force deployed in places where it would be illegal to have American troops. ADF can get away with doing a lot of things the Americans cannot - just like their counterparts in the Israeli Defence Forces.
The truth of the matter is, there really is an inner state within our states, consisting of the coalition of military entities, and yes: they do rely on each other to do each others' dirty work. This should come as no surprise to any citizen of a Five-Eyes state; the new world order is well and truly upon us.
Stratfor, a _private company_, with no connections to the DOJ, had one of its employees say in an internal email seven years ago that they had an indictment.
Based on "conversations" with "people".
In among literally thousands of emails doing little more than smearing Assange and Martin.
And this was in context to Bradley Manning, though no confirmation of the indictment was mentioned in the grand jury.
I have zero love for Assange. Quite a bit of contempt, actually. But it's not particularly verifiable to note that "they" have a "secret" indictment that hasn't been heard of much since a private security firm rumored it seven years ago.
More seriously, you're moving the goalposts. There are lots of people who are better off sticking to Disneyland, Paris rather than Disneyland, Anaheim. That doesn't mean the US government is actively trying to get a hold of them or considers their apprehension and prosecution in US courts important or even feasible.
The idea that the USG is actively hunting Assange is his main excuse for hiding out in the Ecuadorian embassy. The main source of that idea, as far as I can tell, is Assange and the evidence for it is very thin indeed.
Excuse me, Disneyworld. I'm not exactly their target demographic.
> The idea that the USG is actively hunting Assange is his main excuse for hiding out in the Ecuadorian embassy. The main source of that idea, as far as I can tell, is Assange and the evidence for it is very thin indeed.
Well, yes. But given some of the statements of US officials and the way people on the US govt's shitlist (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Carruthers for instance) have been dealt with in the past lends some credence to this claims.
If any foreigners made it to the doubtful status of being on a list of secret indictments I would very much expect Assange to be one of them.
The fact that there is no proof is the expected status, it does not in any way reduce the likelihood of this being the case.
> The idea that the USG is actively hunting Assange is his main excuse for hiding out in the Ecuadorian embassy.
No, he most likely really believes this. Whether or not it is true is another matter but since the US government has never stated the opposite without qualification it will have to remain in limbo.
Are you sure you know what you're talking about here?
Also: Assange's fear was not to be extradited from the UK to the USA but from Sweden. Whether that is realistic or not is another matter entirely but there is some precedent.
If he's extradited from the UK to Sweden, they then they UK consent to a further extradition from Sweden, and he can fight extradition in both the UK and Sweden. (Unless, of course, they go for an "extraordinary" extradition, which seems unlikely in such a high-profile case.)
The principle is a fig leaf on top of a political issue. This situation will not change until a different party gets in power, carrying a different view of the UK’s relationship with their traditional military allies.
I’m not sure the PM actually has the power to do that. Assange is wanted right now for skipping bail. No government is going to pass an Act declaring that not-a-crime.
Max 12 months in prison.
The ONLY way Assange’s actions make sense is if he expects to be found guilty in Sweden.
The only thing that doesn't make sense to me is fleeing to the UK, who's government isn't known for it's integrity.
But yeah, we've seen over and over in the last decade that the UK is one of the last countries you want to be in, if you have anything to do with cybersecurity and digital rights. Assange, the Guardian computers after Snowden, the Snoopers' Charter, DNS censorship...
That's more than a little whitewashed, to me.
He had been contacted already, as part of the process under which charges were initially dropped. The case was subsequently resurrected by Ms. Ny, and it's the interview under this second process that was outstanding when he made arrangements to move on. The warrant was issued two months later.
Yes. Assange is most assuredly to be applauded for his wise strategizing in running from accusations.
Or in the US, where there was (still is?) an active criminal investigation of Wikileaks for publishing government secrets.
It’s called diplomatic immunity. Diplomats don’t have secret plans for bailing out of countries because they don’t need them.
Diplomats don’t hide in embassies. They walk onto airplanes and fly home.
Unless they have been declared persona non grata by the receiving nation ( Article 9 ).
Usually the individual is given 72 hours to get out but that is not codified.
EDIT : Down voters - why are you down voting? Are you down voting because I've made an error or breached the posting guidelines or just because you don't agree with me?
In other words, the "rule of law" has become a farce recently - the powerful (= government, RIAA, etc) get whatever they want, one way or another.
Again though, seems odd they would need to keep it sealed. I wonder what Assange would actually want to do regards to what would happen after he leaves the embassy (legal issues aside). I can't think there are many countries that would allow him entry, bar Ecuador and possibly Russia. Most likely Russia I'd assume as he seems on good terms with Russian media (thinking of his RT show)
Why would they unseal it?
I by no means want to see him extradited to the US, nor anyone come to think about it. I genuinely don't believe their judicial process to be fair. Maybe cultural bias, and I'm not suggesting my country is much better.
Pure government corruption and waste. If those lawyers was speaking of an official policy decision of the CPS, how many laws would they be breaking?
It's reasonably evident even from the limited number of emails quoted that this was not "Sweden wanting to do X, but the UK prevented them because $politicalagendaofUK" but prosecutor Marianne Ny notifying her UK counterpart that Swedish procedure may require her to drop the case and the counterpart expressing exasperation given the amount of resources the UK had dedicated to fulfilling their own obligations to honour European Arrest Warrants...
By the way, the lawyer's name is Paul Close , and it's shockingly difficult to find anything about him on on search engines, but more so on Google than others IMO. (Although given his age, this isn't too surprising in context to personal artefacts, but journalistically speaking it's interesting why he's mentioned so little.)
And for the longest time the UK was if not outright promoting the idea that the Swedes wanted the case to be continued definitely not denying that and claiming that instead the UK was pushing things forward.
I'm thinking about what would happen if instead of Assange we were dealing with a person from a country where religion and government are intertwined, and that person was asking for asylum to the UK for accusations that are not crimes in the UK.
In Sweden he will be interrogated and set free without any conditions. Not "illegally rendered" to America, but "you're free, go wherever you want".
At that point Assange will be able to ponder his need for drama and attention on the one hand. And all those lost years on the other hand. But hey, he got Pamela Anderson!
I would find that ending almost poetic.
i believe that this is actually the case rather than longstanding collaboration based on WL originating as a russian intelligence program. anything is possible, of course.
Watch this shift to China or NK when Russia is no longer a "current enemy".
You can sufficiently explain all WL actions by simply assuming that they will do whatever it takes to hurt US interests.
All politics aside (as if that's possible), we should always strive to learn and expose truth...
Agreed, but selectively exposing the truth requires that if the net effect is a positive one that enough parties are exposing truths to ensure some kind of balance. If not then it becomes a political force in its own right rather than there is an overall gain in transparency.
I'm pretty conflicted about this, on the one hand I applaud WL for the degree to which they have exposed various wrongs, on the other I am disappointed in how they decided to become a political player rather than to just be a conduit.
not saying the information should not be out there, just saying that there are far too many nations who would as soon kill the messenger
So it is about selective releasing information about parties in the US rather than about differences in approach from one country to another.
Stating that Assange hoped that the leaks of the DNC emails would hurt the Clinton campaign clearly shifts WL from being 'just a conduit' for leaked material to being a political operator in its own right.
An organization devoted to transparency should not have an agenda of its own, this in contrast to Assange's previous claims that he did not have a favorite side.
Of course it's hard to prove existence of what they didn't publish. And it is plausible their personal opinions would influence their publication decisions. But that's simply an allegation, not evidence of it happening.
How would the auditor verify having received the complete dump though? It's not like there is a verifiable index of the material available to Wikileaks. Also I think it would be hard to satisfy the critics; next to the impossibility of securing funding for such an undertaking. On top of everything else Wikileaks would risk exposing their sources.
So please don't say it's easy for Wikileaks to get an audit.
Looking at it from another angle: If leakers are unhappy how Wikileaks is publishing, they may well decide to leak somewhere else too. That happening would actually lend credence to the claim that Wikileaks is redacting for political reasons.
I thought I had covered any fears about source exposure and being believable with my two suggestions for who could do this.
> That happening would actually lend credence to the claim that Wikileaks is redacting for political reasons.
Openleaks and the Intercept come to mind.
I assume it would be hard to pre-redact documents to hide your omissions. Outright omission of documents from a dump would be harder to detect in my view. But I must admit I'm ignorant of the techniques available.
> I though I had covered any fears about source exposure and being believable with my two suggestions for who could do this.
Partly. In my view it's up to the sources to decide who gets to see the original dump. They chose Wikileaks. Maybe they did so for reasons we'd judge nefarious but we are not free to assume they'd agree with sharing the originals more widely.
> Openleaks and the Intercept come to mind.
Did they get dumps Wikileaks had published before? Where the version published by Wikileaks turned out to have been selectively redacted for political reasons?
Though they also published climate scientists' emails, which was not a sign of great rationality on behalf of Assagne.
They also said Snowden and MLK were working for the Russians/Soviets
cough Democratic People’s Republic of Korea cough
-- Lord of War
I think he should go round to his local lawyer and ask about taking the UK police to court. He deserves to see stand in that court room and hear them answer for why this happened.
He doesn't seem to want to though... He just seems to want to moan on twitter without leaving his home...
Wikileaks has exposed some of the most horrific crimes committed by the Unites States and others yet we are still trying to kill the messenger.
They also released tons of military files relating to the Iraq / Afghan war and Gitmo that confirmed a lot of popular theory about the goings on over there - torture, Geneva violations, etc.