Refugee Assange Deserves His Freedom - and Our Nation's Thanks (La Jornada, Mexico)
deplorable, but indicative of the contemporary world disorder, that Swedish
legal officials have been suborned to invent allegations of sex crimes in the
context of what has been exposed as a Washington revenge and damage control operation,
as well as an attempt to suppress transparency, freedom of expression and the
release of information carried out by the Australian and his organization.”
The unexpected appearance of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the Ecuador Embassy in London, his formal
request to the Andean country for political asylum, and Quito’s offer to evaluate
the request based on the principles of international law
and the country’s political tradition of protecting human rights, has dispelled
fears that the Australian journalist would be handed over to Sweden in the next
few days. It is in Sweden that he faces charges of alleged sexual harassment
and rape, which seem a fait accompli given the refusal of the British Supreme
Court to reopen the case last week.
Whatever response the Rafael Correa government gives Assange,
the existence of a political refugee in contemporary Europe, the legal fury
being directed against him by the authorities of two Old World countries,
England and Sweden, and the silence of the Western powers in regard to this
situation, demonstrates the hypocrisy and moral and political bankruptcy of
governments that repeatedly claim to be champions of freedom, transparency,
legality and respect for human rights, but instead act as advocates of
authoritarianism, defenders of opacity, partisans of the reactionary use of law
and the disregard of individual rights.
It is worth remembering that strictly speaking, there is no
criminal charge against Assange, but merely a demand
that he present himself as part of an investigation, the true motive of which
cannot by hidden: to transport him to Sweden for eventual delivery to the U.S.
government, whose spokespeople have made no secret of Washington’s intention of
charging him with acts of terrorism. It is deplorable, but indicative of the
contemporary world disorder, that Swedish legal officials have been suborned to
invent allegations of sex crimes in the context of what has been exposed as a
Washington revenge and damage control operation, as well as an attempt to
suppress transparency, freedom of expression and the release of information
carried out by the Australian and his organization.
The persecution began against the backdrop of global outrage
in the face of evidence of war crimes committed by the forces that has invaded Iraq and
Afghanistan, the dissemination of State Department documents that revealed
all manner of unmentionable practices - conspiracy, incitement of corruption,
acts of spying, acts of espionage, attacks on sovereignty, diplomatic hostility
toward government critics, the white-washing of dreadful regimes, and a general
irritation over the work of WikiLeaks expressed by Washington and the world’s
other leading powers.
In this connection, it is worth mentioning that yesterday,
while Assange was seeking political asylum at the
Ecuador Embassy to avoid being extradited to Swedish territory, representatives
of these powers attended the G-20 Summit in Los Cabos,
Mexico, where there was confirmation of their inability to come up with
proposals for resolving the social and economic devastation that confronts
their populations, particularly in European countries.
Posted by Worldmeets.US
Moreover, it is clear that Assange’s
application for political asylum constitutes a tricky diplomatic scenario
between the governments in London and Stockholm on the one side, and Quito on
the other. For the moment, it is to be hoped that the is able to face down the
outside pressure that it is undoubtedly being subjected to and honor Assange’s record of dignity, personal sovereignty, respect
for human rights, and his willingness to help correct the current world order,
and respond favorably to the WikiLeaks founder’s request.
To do this, Ecuador will require the solidarity of honorable
governments and societies like ours, which benefitted from the work of Assange and his team, and have obtained by way of their
“leaks,” an invaluable tool for public scrutiny and social control of the
authorities and world powers, and which have been strengthened in terms of
transparency, freedom of expression and the right to information, which are essential
elements for the development of democracy and civilization.