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If I recall the evidence was always pretty weak. I don’t have time to find the news article from back then, but it was “sexual assault” because he didn’t wear a condom and at the time the woman (perhaps plural) didn’t want to really participate.

Could be wrong though...

Does anyone have some news from back then?




The charge was always pretty consistent as "sexual assault" as you described, yes, with "rape" having a specific definition in Swedish law.

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2010/dec/17/julian-assange...

It sounds like the women didn't really want to pursue the case (which is not at all uncommon in sexual assault cases!), they just wanted to track down Assange and make him take an STD test after he had unprotected sex with them, and the police said, well now that you've told us this, we're going to tell the prosecutor.

(One plausible interpretation is that the assaults did in fact happen as described and that the Swedish justice system was pressured by the US to prosecute it aggressively with the goal of getting him into US custody - the two are not necessarily contradictory.)


Personally I think Assange may well genuinely have believed it was US involvement - rape sentences in Sweden are short and lenient enough that evading charges for years makes no sense unless he was scared of something else. But of course that does not tell us anything about whether or not he was right.

At the same time I suspect the oddities in how the case was pursued is more likely to simply have been about domestic Swedish politics - both the prosecutor and one of the lawyers involved are known to have favoured a stricter handling of rape cases, and it's plausible they saw Assange as someone getting away with something they wanted to make an example of.

So he may well have been genuinely worried for all the wrong reasons.

Of course this is just a hypothesis.


> rape sentences in Sweden are short and lenient enough that evading charges for years makes no sense unless he was scared of something else

Yes he was obviously not running from the Swedish sentence. I used to think that must have meant he ran from the US. But another theory could be that he ran from the reputation hit.


https://www.rollingstone.com/culture/culture-news/julian-ass...

> Assange, who was aware that it was the expressed wish of the injured party and a prerequisite of sexual intercourse that a condom be used, consummated unprotected sexual intercourse with her without her knowledge.

> Assange deliberately consummated sexual intercourse with her by improperly exploiting that she, due to sleep, was in a helpless state. It is an aggravating circumstance that Assange, who was aware that it was the expressed wish of the injured party and a prerequisite of sexual intercourse that a condom be used, still consummated unprotected sexual intercourse with her. The sexual act was designed to violate the injured party’s sexual integrity.


These are just the original accusations, this is not a summary of established facts.


The parent comment gave a somewhat inaccurate picture of the allegations, hence my linking them.


That's literally rape. If you consent to a sex act, that doesn't mean you consent to any sex act. If you "switch holes", or "lose the condom" or simply don't put one on at all, without consent, that's a non-consensual sex act and thus rape.


If you lose the condom it doesn't make it rape. It makes you a loser who will probably be a social outcast.

If you agreed before to kiss for 10 minutes but stop after 5 it doesn't make it rape either.

If the person asks you to stop and you refuse that's rape.

If she finishes first and asks you to stop and you continue that is rape.

But you don't need to have a detailed conversation agreeing to everything beforehand. If you try something and the other person doesn't stop the action it is not rape.

You could both agree not to do something beforehand and end up doing that act and it wouldn't make it rape unless one party refused that action during the attempt.


If you agree to "we can have sex if you wear a condom" and then secretly take off the condom, that's rape. The sex being had was not consensual.


If you take that point of view and use a different example it sounds foolish.

If we agree to have sex while she has a blindfold on but only if I wear a clown mask. If I take off the mask before sex and she watches the tape later she cannot claim rape.

Or do you think that's rape as well?


1. I think it's extraordinarily disingenuous to compare protected vs. unprotected sex to whether or not one has a mask on. The consequences of unprotected sex - pregnancy, STDs, etc. - are potentially deadly.

2. Yes, your example describes non-consensual sex, i.e. rape.


Your political belief on the importance protected sex shouldn't be part of what defines rape as a term.

If someone has aids doesn't tell the partner and they die they could be charged with murder or assault. But never rape.

If you think pointn 2 is rape then a husband promising to take out the trash if sex is performed and him not doing later makes it rape. Fraud perhaps.. you are missing the violence that rape puts the victim through.


Rape doesn't need to be violent to be rape.


There was also some chatter about the woman being a former CIA operative. The whole thing has smelled so bad right from the start.


There's chatter that the Queen of England is a lizard shapeshifter. The claims that one accuser was a CIA operative appear very, very thin.

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2010/dec/07/rape-claims-ju...

> What has most engaged the conspiracy theorists and Assange's more excitable defenders, however, are a few key incidents in Miss A career, in particular that she is said to have worked in the Swedish embassy in the US, and wrote her university thesis in 2007 on a vision of Cuba after the death of Castro.


In may she was quoted as saying "she wanted to reopen the case at any cost" and "get justice". I guess she's cool with it now? /s


Victims and prosecutors disagree on the path forwards regularly.


"didn't really want to participate" is basically the definition of sexual assault.


> "didn't really want to participate" is basically the definition of sexual assault.

Yes, but is also a case of "your word against mine" unless supported by verifiable data.


Didn't really isn't = decided not to. It could be didn't feel like it but did it anyways.

Ever heard someone say this..

I didn't want to go to school but I did.

It's like saying I didn't want to kill that person. It is an unfinished statement to what the final decision is. It could be: So I did or so I didn't.


If we go by that definition then everytime your partner is horny and you're not, but you have sex with them regardless you're "sexually assaulted". As you didn't really want to participate.


True, but I think the parent's absolutism is closer to reality than your absolutism. I.e. it's essentially a pointless semantic argument - "didn't really want to" doesn't have enough context to decide in either direction.


I agree with you there, my point was that his definition is highly fallible and easily abused. And I was attempting to point that out with an example.

It might seem pointlessly semantic, but I think it's important with issues such as sexual assault and rape. Especially considering the people on either side of this likely have their lives ruined.


No.

"Eh, whatever" and "no, not without a condom" aren't the same thing.


My point was that it isn't a good definition, I'm not implying anything regarding the assange case.


That's rubbish; you may not be in the mood, but you still consent to it - wanting to do something isn't the same as being horny. The point isn't about being horny, it's if you want to do it - being aroused is a factor you're introducing.


My point was that your partner can be pushy enough that you participate even though you didn't really want to. I.e. they are horny/want to have sex, you don't, yet you still have sex. By the definition above that is sexual assault.

If you don't communicate that you don't want to have sex it becomes a really murky topic, as you didn't give verbal nor non-verbal consent. But you also didn't give verbal nor nnon-verbal disconsent. This could be something you regret afterwards, but I don't think you can attribute that to malintent (or rape/sexual assault) on your sexual partner's side.

So removing the condom mid-act would be sexual assault, a broken condom wouldn't be. But the partner consented to sex with a condom.

Or in case a woman says she's on birthcontrol (or has a spiral) and it later turns out that was false, then you also didn't consent to that.

So basically my second point is that it takes a lot of language to define what is and what isn't sexual assault or rape. Condensing it down would be harmful to victims and people accused.


Your definition of sexual assault is dangerously lacking in nuance.

Most people who have had long term sexual partners have had a time or two where they "didn't really want to participate" but did anyway without much/any complaining for the sake of their partner. Are all all those instances "basically sexual assault"?

Watering down the definition of sexual assault to include instances where nobody felt assaulted in any way does not result in it being taken more seriously.


While there are situations like you describe where "didn't really want to participate" represents something immoral and selfish but less insidious than what we think of as rape, there are also plenty of situations where it does represent the weighty event of sexual assault. I think your simplification is less nuanced and much more dangerous than the parent's simplification. I also think "overwhelming majority" is a scary assumption, in terms of what it says about your experiences, unless we are mapping "didn't really want to" very differently onto real examples of emotional state.

*Disclaimer: The parent post was edited after I began replying to be worded a bit less absolutely.


>While there are situations like you describe where "didn't really want to participate" represents something immoral and selfish but less insidious than what we think of as rape, there are also plenty of situations where it does represent the weighty event of sexual assault.

I'm talking strictly about situations where there is no threat of violence.

Obviously there is a spectrum of varying degrees of consent from "perfectly ok" to "definitely rape" and somewhere in there is a range that constitutes sexual assault but to say that the lack of specifically enthusiastic consent defines the floor of the sexual assault range is farcical when there are so many other variables to consider.

>Disclaimer: The parent post was edited after I began replying to be worded a bit less absolutely.

I changed the order of the three points.

>we are mapping "didn't really want to" very differently onto real examples of emotional state.

I think a lot of people find "didn't really want to" to be equivalent to "really didn't want to"


Spousal rape and sexual abuse were legal in many places for a long time (and still are in some), doesn't make it not rape and sexual abuse, though.

"Informed enthusiastic consent" isn't so hard to figure out, is it? If you feel like you're being pressured into something you don't want, that's still non-consensual even if you don't put up a fight.


I think most people feel like they are sometimes pressured into work they don’t want to do, but we don’t call that slavery.

Frankly maybe we should, but until we do it’s going to be hard to make this a bright line.


Voluntarily doing something you’re not excited about is different than having something done to you you don’t want done. It’s not kidnapping if I agree to go with my wife to visit her sister. It is rape if I agree to sex with a condom but the other party removes it. It’s also rape if I agree to sex with someone and then they engage in sex a second time while I am asleep hours later.


> and at the time the woman (perhaps plural) didn’t want to really participate.

AFAIK, the sexual interactions where consensual as they occurred. But the two woman withdrew consent after the fact as they learned he hadn’t been wearing a condom (and they discovered he’d been with both of them).

leftyted 16 days ago [flagged]

I do think it's likely that, assault or not, Assange behaved in an unaceptable way toward these women. He has often been quoted mentioning that he has children all over the world with various women. Surreptitiously removing a condom would be in character.

If true, his attitude reminds me of Jeff Epstein's plan to "seed the human race with his DNA" by impregnanting a bunch of women on a ranch he owned. These people see their own supposed genius as justification for violating moral norms.

You can still think Assange is right (or at least important), but he's a deeply flawed person and it's not all propaganda.


>"Surreptitiously removing a condom would be in character."

You provide zero evidence for that naked assertion.

> it's not all propaganda.

If it has no evidnce and no substance as it seems no to, the rationale behind it is of academic interest alone. Maybe it's pure malice? Maybe it's jealous rage? Maybe it's delusional? Maybe it's propaganda? Maybe it's just not interesting what caused it - it shouldn't be to the legal process. Substance is everything. What seems like a strong lack of it here, stinks.


> If it has no evidnce and no substance as it seems no to, the rationale behind it is of academic interest alone. Maybe it's pure malice? Maybe it's jealous rage? Maybe it's delusional? Maybe it's propaganda? Maybe it's just not interesting what caused it - it shouldn't be to the legal process. Substance is everything. What seems like a strong lack of it here, stinks.

What I'm doing is what you're doing and what everyone should do: synthesize information into an opinion. I don't claim knowledge, but I have a model of the world, of how people act, and I'm feeding various information into that model and using it to generate an opinion. You have a different model and you've generated a different opinion. That's fine. But to conclude that people can't form certain opinions absent evidence is naive. Human beings are not courts of law.

I made no comment about whether Assange should be convicted in a court of law. I only said that I think he did something wrong and that, if I'm right, I see his behavior as representative of a pattern wherein certain people view themselves as above normative morality.


I disagree on the strongest possible way with your characterisation of what you are doing based on reading of it. Information. The lack of it are key. Let us leave it at that.


It would not matter one fuck were he a murdering, misogynist, insert horrible personality types here. The discussion is not about his personal attractiveness, but a selection of a few of his actions relating to wikileaks. You know nothing about him raping, I know nothing about him raping, but we all know the US government murdered people, covered it up and all we're stuck here talking about is raping.

This isn't Richard Stallman 2.0. Assange told you something that nobody denies is true. He's not head of GNU, let the rape allegations be dealt with by the appropriate people. Your job as somebody talking about Assange is to say, "yea, that shit he told us was terrible, something should be done." Not "he might take his fucking condoms off".


Did you make it to the end of my post?

> You can still think Assange is right (or at least important), but he's a deeply flawed person and it's not all propaganda.

Anyway, I agree with you that the release of the "collateral murder" video was a good thing. But I strongly disagree with the idea that I "shouldn't have an opinion about certain things that are beyond my purview" or whatever you're saying.




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