Thom's blog - Tuesday December 7th, 2010

You need to know this. Julian Assange was arrested today in London. The wikileaks founder turned himself in to London authorities this morning in relation to a sex crimes investigation in Sweden. Assange is accused of having consensual – but unprotected sex in that country – which is illegal. His accuser is a woman who works for an anti-Castro group funded by the CIA. Unclear what happens next – Assange is likely to challenge extradition to Sweden which means he will stay in custody in the UK or be released on bail pending another hearing. Yesterday – his legal defense fund – 31,000 pounds - was frozen by a Swedish bank – affecting his chances to receive a fair trail should it come to that. A spokesperson for wikileaks – claimed Assange’s arrest will not impair the site – and the release of more sensitive documents will continue. Also – the site has no intention yet of dispatching the “doomsday” files that Assange warned would be released in case he was arrested or killed. However – should the United States – which has also launched an investigation against the whistleblower for unknown crimes – succeed in having Assange extradited here – the release of those files is highly likely.

Comments

Boris31's picture
Boris31 13 years 28 weeks ago
#1

I remember when they pinched Noriega how odd it seemed to be going into another country and arresting their leader (Dictator notwithstanding). The jokes of 'Spam in a Can' made the rounds, but it was the strange charge of supposedly finding Kiddie Porn in the basement of one of his homes that put the fingerprints of a certain Government agency on the situation.

As far as the Tax debate... once the deal is struck.. the Clock starts. The R's have killed their deficit arguments with this tax giveaway, but have hung their fortunes on 'Job Creating'.

Now the public will have a target.

cbrack211's picture
cbrack211 13 years 28 weeks ago
#2

Thom, keep the pressure on. The U.S. continues to subvert our democratic principles in order to target those who cannot be targeted and dealt with within the law. They are using tactics to assasinate Mr. Assange's character, financial ability, and personal freedom by using allies and U.S. corporations to do so. Who is fighting for the people? These documents are in the public interest if they serve to remove what Noam Chomsky calls "the justification for power." In this light they show our own Secretary of State requesting secret passwords, financial information, and compromising details of representatives within the U.N. I say, the control of information is the most frightening power that a government can exercise to control it's citizens. There is the necessity for a certain amount of secrecy in diplomatic dealings, but let's be honest, most people are concerned with the abuse of power that that secrecy allows. Keep fighting the good fight!

http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2010/12/fighting-wikileaks

Diana Frank's picture
Diana Frank 13 years 28 weeks ago
#3

He and his team should get the medal of honor.

sunka2911 13 years 28 weeks ago
#4

I totally agree, but I have one question. Why didn't "anyone" go after the people that outed Valerie Plame. Didn't her outing cause many people to be in jeopardy for their lives? There was certainly a necessary amount of secrecy for her job and the Bush administration blew her cover.

stonesphere's picture
stonesphere 13 years 28 weeks ago
#5

What ever happened to "sunlight is the best medicine" ? What "they" do and how they go about doing it is none of the publics business apparently. "Government for and by the people" ??? "Government for and by the government" would seem more accurate. True enough that certain information may not be suitable for public consumption and needs to be classified but in conducting witch hunts against whistle blowers in order to further curtail exposure to questionable comments and conspiracy made by the politic on the publics behalf they are putting national security at risk. Not good, not good at all.

leighmf's picture
leighmf 13 years 28 weeks ago
#6

Get as much attention as possible- such typical Bush-faction CIA discrediting tactics! They have so much to hide.

"anti-Castro group funded by the CIA"

"his legal defense fund – 31,000 pounds - was frozen by a Swedish bank"

Swedish ties with Shamrock Oil, Amarillo TX exist since 1905

1933 Newspaper story "An Orphan Child- The idea of armed American intervention in Liberia seems fantastic but American officials there have raised it as a threat against Liberians who balk at signing a League of Nations reconstruction Plan. Critics, who say this country is engaging in its worst venture of imperialism ever, charge the plan would virtually deliver Liberia to Harvey Firestone, who has a (1924) 99-vear rubber development lease on 1, 000, 000 acres and pays 6 cents an acre for land the League report says is worth 50 cents."

WALKER MINING COMPANY INCORPORATED : Control Numnber: 193010-103 Creation : 2/15/1933 Inactive : 1/1/1970

4/28/1960 Liberian American-Swedish Minerals Co (LAMCO) agreement with Bethlehem Steel for development of certain ore deposits, commenced 5/1/1963

All Zapata Oil SEC filings 1960-1966 were lost.

4/04/1985 Bush Investments Corporation Liberia ; aoi. 4/04/1985 ; diss 11/29/1992; renewed in GA 4/22/1996

Bonsai's picture
Bonsai 13 years 28 weeks ago
#7

I'm torn... on the one hand I want to know what's going on with my government, and on the other hand I also know that for any country to be effective in foreign policy it has to be able do some things in secret.

And is it me or is it that the US government is being targeted here? Where are the Chinese secrets, or the British or the Russians? If we are going to have sunshine on Government secrets then we need to do it for everyone, and not just the US.

So I don't really see anyone as heroic here. I see a group who think they are right and want to change the way things are done by exposing secrets, but I don't see them applying their zeal in a way that is doing any real good at the moment. I also think that there is some real harm in exposing everything all the time. We all wear clothes to cover some things up. Governments need to have the same right to keep some things under covers.

As for the arrest, Who Knows? It could be retaliation but I don't go in for conspiracies unless it involves Republicans and Sarah Palin.

Aussie Progressive 13 years 28 weeks ago
#8

If there is some juicy stuff concerning Australia's previous conservavite government I hope wikileaks lets it rip!

RW Pfaehler 13 years 28 weeks ago
#9

I worked in gov't for 34 years. I and others had opportunities to expose waste and abuse. It never worked when going through "normal chain-of-command channels". Secretly meeting with a news reporter, or "dropping" off some documents in an unmarked manila envelope was necessary to try and get the info out to the public....and that method wasn't a sure thing either.

We punish those who try to help expose wrongs, and reward / honor those who undermine what's left of our democratic society.

I wanna see President Obama bestow the Medal of Freedm to Julian Assange.

wmstoll's picture
wmstoll 13 years 28 weeks ago
#10

If he had published Russian or Chinese secrets he would have disappeared.

Airborne855's picture
Airborne855 13 years 28 weeks ago
#11

This episode reveals clearly what a dangerous imperial power the United States has become. No citizen is safe anywhere in the world in his or her own country. The whole world has become America's war zone. If Americans ever wondered how it was that Hitler rose to power and why the masses marched lockstep to his war drums, they need only look around them now. Germans nursed grievances against enemies real or imagined. Germans believed in their own mythology. Germans fervently promoted a deep-rooted social philosophy that can be traced back through leading intellectuals and philosophers, among them Nobel peace prize recipients, going back to Nietzshe, 33 years before Hitler rose to power. Germans believed that they were making a better world in search of the übermensch (superman aka Zarathustra). Germans had their own version of manifest destiny. America is now a dark mirror image of another world order run amok.

Barliman's picture
Barliman 13 years 28 weeks ago
#12

There is way too much secrecy in government. Secrecy is essential to maintaining an "us versus them paradigm" that is so important in maintaining the power that seem along with money, the only thing that is worshipped nowadays.

Julian Assange should be honoured for his work towards restoring participatory democracy.

michael deterding's picture
michael deterding 13 years 28 weeks ago
#13

For anyone who still thinks that democratic political entities are truly that, get a clue. A democracy is the most easily corruptible state. All a corporation has to do is buy it . Many corporations own several..The population is enslaved by debt legislated by banks , funded by the elected state governments. The more expensive/profitable states are split up and owned by cabals. The occupants are anesthetized by the corporate media and sweetheart deals . The political leaders (corporate sock puppets, carefully groomed and vetted , able to act out scripted dramatizations and sound bite succinct photo ops, are installed like the chocolate chips in a delicious cookie). Democratic style states involve the dominated population by convincing them that their participation is effectual in their self governance, and a numbing bombarge of media broadcasts of sports,social hype and religion. The scope of the choices should be a sufficient clue to the oxymoron of this premise. Look at the U.S. today." Of the ...by the..for the..." ,, gimme a break. An Aussie got a "gimmee" citizenship, bought a boatload of broadcasting bandwidth and started his takeover of the corporate states of amerikkka via the airwaves, and everything under the sun as well.If we are to believe the stats, how does 2 percent of the population control the other 98percent? They take control of the military via the presidency (any body seen obama?) . The real corporate agenda is to move public acceptance of nuclear technology forward.

michael deterding's picture
michael deterding 13 years 28 weeks ago
#14

Sssssst !

Hey barliman, the best way to spread a story is to designate it as a secret .

Chas_in_ca's picture
Chas_in_ca 13 years 28 weeks ago
#15

We are NOT going to trade the cowardly republicans 2 years of unfunded tax cuts for the rich just to extend unemployment 1 year!

It is time to hold these cowards out in the light of day and have single-issue roll-call votes on each and every item.

Best regards,
Charles, in California

Bullhorn Journal's picture
Bullhorn Journal 13 years 28 weeks ago
#16

Took me a couple hours to expunge paypal from my movie's website. Now I have to cancel the Visa card too. Assange, why can't you just be a Good American and not inconvenience me so much? I have comments to write on HuffPo.

SadArtist's picture
SadArtist 13 years 26 weeks ago
#17

To me this is scary. But what's scarier is that many Americans agree with it. Let's face it, many people don't believe in freedom of speech, freedom of the press, democracy in general.

Personally, I believe surveillance cameras are a violation of the 4th Amendment but that those who are in power do need to be surveilled. Because power corrupts. And those who wield it can do tremendous damage. But does it matter what I think? What we think? Our government doesn't seem to be listening to us. And most Americans have no clue as to what is happening to this country right now, so I think those of us who are concerned about these things and who are able to think differently from the Fox News pundits are in a tiny minority...

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