how much longer can Julian even survive?

‘I can’t think properly’: Assange disoriented as court rejects delay for extradition proceedings’, 21 Oct, 2019, RT.com

“With his supporters rallying outside the court building, Julian Assange showed signs of fatigue in a bid to delay extradition proceedings scheduled for next year. The London court ruled against him."
Fatigue??? He's barely able to speak!
Cleanly shaven and dressed in a navy suit, Assange appeared before Westminster Magistrates Court on Monday to seek the postponement of an extradition hearing scheduled for February.

His lawyer argued that the US government had attempted to kidnap and cause harm to his client, and that he would need more time to compile evidence for the case.

Although Assange raised his fist to supporters in the public gallery, the imprisoned journalist did not appear to be in good form. The WikiLeaks founder reportedly struggled to say his own name and date of birth, and held back tears as he told the court that he couldn’t “think properly.”

The court ultimately rejected the proposed delay. Outside the building, protesters chanted slogans and held up a giant banner reading “Don’t extradite Assange.”

 In a video published by Ruptly, activists can be seen trying to surround a police van believed to be carrying Assange. Officers at the scene rushed to move protesters away from the vehicle.”  (I can’t find an embeddable version at Ruptly.)

On Oct. 19, 2019, Oscar Grenfell had reported at wsws.org that the push is on for the Australian government to defend Assange, and some MPs certainly are defending him, but this was the response by the head of the government:

“Prime Minister Scott Morrison responded this week by blandly declaring that Assange must “face the music” in the US. Senior government ministers have previously maligned Assange, repeating the lies concocted by the US intelligence agencies to discredit him.”

Laura Tiernen’s first-hand report of the delay today, Oct. 22, 2019, wsws.org is a horror story, and hard to read without committing Thought Crimes to the judge and every single person who has helped  in his persecution, and likely death. 

“Standing in the dock—a room enclosed by reinforced glass panels—Assange mentally paused and appeared to stumble as Judge Vanessa Baraitser asked him to state his name and date of birth.

Baraitser’s vindictiveness towards Assange was clear from the first moments of the hour-and-a-half-long case management hearing. She told Assange’s supporters watching silently in the public gallery that “those causing a disturbance … will be asked to leave.” WikiLeaks’ editor and veteran journalist Kristinn Hrafnsson, investigative journalist John Pilger and former Lord Mayor of London Ken Livingstone were among those seated.” [snip w/ arguments by QC’s for both the US and for Assange]

“Summers requested that Baraitser grant a three-month delay to the extradition hearing scheduled for February 25. He pointed to “extraordinary” revelations of illegal US interference against Assange’s legal rights. Legal action taken by Assange against a Spanish security company had exposed the US “actively intruding on privileged discussions” between Assange and his lawyers at the Ecuadorian embassy.

The US state was involved in the illegal theft of information from telephones and computers, “hooded men breaking into offices” and “plans to kidnap and harm Mr Assange.”

“To be blunt, we need more time,” he told the court. The “enormity” of the issues in the case required “evidence gathering that would test most lawyers.”

Summers explained that a delay was also needed due to conditions facing Assange at Belmarsh Prison. His client had no access to information, no phone contact with his US legal team and mail restrictions meant he had only received court documents from his lawyers one week before today’s hearing.

Responding on behalf of the US government, Lewis told Baraitser, “You shouldn’t be beguiled into accepting” the three-month delay argued by Assange’s lawyers. “It’s just a guesstimate.”

Summers appealed to Baraitser that the February date for a full extradition hearing “isn’t sustainable.” He repeatedly stated that Assange’s right to a fair and equitable trial was being placed in jeopardy.

Baraitser was unmoved, stating: “My intention is to adopt the timetable suggested by Mr Lewis.” While granting to the defence a two-month extension to gather further evidence, she ruled the full extradition hearing would proceed on February 25.

In a final vindictive move, Baraitser declared that next year’s week-long extradition hearing would take place at Woolwich Magistrates Court near Belmarsh Prison. There were audible gasps in the public gallery at Baraitser’s announcement. The venue near Belmarsh has a “public gallery” of just three seats, all but denying public scrutiny and allowing a biased media to selectively report and spread disinformation and lies.” [snip]

“As the hearing drew to an end, Baraitser to turned to Assange and asked him to rise. “Do you understand what has happened here today?”

Assange, who has endured months of solitary confinement and been cut off from daily access to outside information, replied after a long pause: “Do I understand? Not really.”

“Is there anything else you would like to say?” Baraitser asked.

“I don’t understand how this is equitable.” Assange replied, speaking softly and inaudibly at times. “This superpower had 10 years to prepare for this case. I can’t remember anything. I can’t access any of my written work. It’s very difficult to do anything with such limited resources against a superpower intent on [inaudible]… They have an unfair advantage dealing with documents. They [know] the interior of my life with my psychologist. They steal my children’s DNA. This is not equitable what is happening here.”


Kristinn Hrafnsson speaking alongside John Pilger after the hearing

“I can’t think properly,” he concluded, fighting back tears and raising both hands to his head. “The conditions of your detainment are not the subject of this court,” Baraitser replied. These were the final words spoken before Assange was led from the dock, out of view of his supporters in the public gallery.”

Tiernan then finishes with quotes by Kristinn Hrafnsson and John Pilger concerning the grotesque illegality of the entire political prosecution and persecution of Julian Assange.

I’ll include a few Tweets in a comment as they embed here and at c99% differently.

(cross-posted from Café Babylon)

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wendy davis's picture

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gulfgal98's picture

@wendy davis I do not see a tweet. Am I supposed to see a tweet?

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"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." John F Kennedy

wendy davis's picture

@gulfgal98

tweets in the (my) first comment, as promised. try 'refresh' perhaps?

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gulfgal98's picture

@wendy davis as I am not seeing them. Thanks.

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"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." John F Kennedy

travelerxxx's picture

@gulfgal98 @gulfgal98

May be you, gg. I see them all just fine.

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wendy davis's picture

@gulfgal98

and just sent them to you by PM.

best,
wd

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"The music." What a pretty little description for the total massacre of the life and mind of a man who wanted us all to know exactly what our governments are doing to sabotage our world.

The governments of the US and Britain are so thoroughly awash in CIA generated corruptions that the attempt to label them as two of the world's "great Democracies" is beyond humorous.

And you can add Australia to that list.

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"Without the right to offend, freedom of speech does not exist." Taslima Nasrin

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Fishtroller 02

They more or less operate as one.

I don't want to hear anybody talking anymore about how Trump is a threat to our democracy. You can't be a threat to something that doesn't exist.

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

wendy davis's picture

@Fishtroller 02

also included this in that section of his report:

Liberal Senator James Paterson attempted to provide a more sophisticated argument for the government’s refusal to defend Assange, telling the Sydney Morning Herald last week that both Britain and the US were “rule-of-law countries.”

Paterson piously stated: “This is not the case in many other countries in the world. Sadly, we know there are Australian citizens detained right now in China and Iran who are not facing free and fair legal systems ... and the Australian government does have a greater obligation to assist those citizens.”

The suggestion that the Australian government has a responsibility to defend its citizens in some jurisdictions, but not in others, is a legal fiction that has no basis in Australian or international legislation.

Paterson’s statements, moreover, fly in the face of repeated warnings by United Nations officials and human rights organisations that Assange’s legal and democratic rights have been trampled upon by the British and US authorities.

Paterson’s comments point to the real reason why successive Australian governments, Labor and Liberal-National alike, have joined the US-led vendetta against Assange. Their participation in the attacks against him has gone hand in hand with unconditional backing for the US alliance and support for Washington’s military build-up in the Asia-Pacific region, in preparation for war against China.

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there will be nothing left of him.

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wendy davis's picture

@irishking

i've been playing various covers of this dylan song all morning; will julian's release only be by death/crossing to the other side? i do fear that it has been written, and will be so.

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gulfgal98's picture

and has written about what he witnessed. I had a very difficult time reading it because the picture he painted was so horrific. Here is Murray's description of Julian Assange in court.

Before I get on to the blatant lack of fair process, the first thing I must note was Julian’s condition. I was badly shocked by just how much weight my friend has lost, by the speed his hair has receded and by the appearance of premature and vastly accelerated ageing. He has a pronounced limp I have never seen before. Since his arrest he has lost over 15 kg in weight.

But his physical appearance was not as shocking as his mental deterioration. When asked to give his name and date of birth, he struggled visibly over several seconds to recall both. I will come to the important content of his statement at the end of proceedings in due course, but his difficulty in making it was very evident; it was a real struggle for him to articulate the words and focus his train of thought.

Until yesterday I had always been quietly sceptical of those who claimed that Julian’s treatment amounted to torture – even of Nils Melzer, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture – and sceptical of those who suggested he may be subject to debilitating drug treatments. But having attended the trials in Uzbekistan of several victims of extreme torture, and having worked with survivors from Sierra Leone and elsewhere, I can tell you that yesterday changed my mind entirely and Julian exhibited exactly the symptoms of a torture victim brought blinking into the light, particularly in terms of disorientation, confusion, and the real struggle to assert free will through the fog of learned helplessness.

I cannot believe how cruel the American /British systems of "justice" are. It is obvious Assange is a political prisoner who has been subjected to severe torture and yet good people are helpless to stop it. Any person who has participated in this travesty is simply pure evil.

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"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." John F Kennedy

wendy davis's picture

@gulfgal98

he'd alluded to how hard it would be to write it up in the first tweet i'd entered in the first comment.

more tears, more terror for julian. but factor in ecuador's lenin moreno, who sold julian to the UK belmarsh gitmo for an IMF loan and a memo-of-understanding with the pentagon.

how's that going for ya know, moreno? looks like the indigenous are kickin' your sorry ass! good!

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

which is one of the aims of this endeavour, of course. Apart from revenge, and terrifying anybody who contemplates doing the same thing.

What made them hold back from doing this for years and suddenly makes them able to do it now?

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

wendy davis's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal

yes. but why now? because raffael correa's hand-picked successor lenin moreno sold julian to the american empire and clients for a few pieces of silver. and on that day, he was dragged out of the ecuadorian embassy to 'face the music'.

thus: the stars were aligned in a perfect storm, if i may mix metaphors.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@wendy davis

I assume that what's kept them from moving all this time is not the right of Ecuador to have sovereignty over its embassy, nor the economic or military power of Ecuador, which are insignificant compared to those of the Five Eyes, but rather some information Julian and Wikileaks were holding back to release in case of danger.

I can't believe that respect for Ecuador's sovereignty was holding back these fascists.

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

wendy davis's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal

the speculation that wikileaks/assange has a 'deadman's switch'. there was one time folks thought it had been by assange, with endless lines of inscrutable code, but it turned out not to be. but i hadn't been speaking of ecuador's military power, but the joint power of that nation coupled with the US military's.

it's still unclear as to bolsonaro's nation whether colombia is a formal nato member (to threaten VZ, & any other enemies of the capitalist hegemon) or just 'under nato's umbrella' or 'soon to be nato members', but i do remember it well.

but given the IMF loan that seems to have backfired in ecuador, as well as becoming an official client of amerika, i'd think that would have been plenty. i'd even include the many times that assange had been leaving sound traps in his rooms, as scaffolding was built to access his balcony, and ever increasing numbers of black SUVs were parked in front of his wing of the embassy, meaning to him: kidnap and get away vehicles.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

is continue to tell the truth.

It's not enough.

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

ggersh's picture

really need to learn what real democracy is.

the bush/clinton/zero/trump cabal can't get more
evil than this

https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/

Everybody in that court yesterday saw that one of the greatest journalists and most important dissidents of our times is being tortured to death by the state, before our eyes. To see my friend, the most articulate man, the fastest thinker, I have ever known, reduced to that shambling and incoherent wreck, was unbearable. Yet the agents of the state, particularly the callous magistrate Vanessa Baraitser, were not just prepared but eager to be a part of this bloodsport. She actually told him that if he were incapable of following proceedings, then his lawyers could explain what had happened to him later. The question of why a man who, by the very charges against him, was acknowledged to be highly intelligent and competent, had been reduced by the state to somebody incapable of following court proceedings, gave her not a millisecond of concern.

The charge against Julian is very specific; conspiring with Chelsea Manning to publish the Iraq War logs, the Afghanistan war logs and the State Department cables. The charges are nothing to do with Sweden, nothing to do with sex, and nothing to do with the 2016 US election; a simple clarification the mainstream media appears incapable of understanding

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trump will be amerika's last president

There is no way in the American political system to vote against the interests of GS, JPM, Citi, ATT, AMZN, MSFT, WM, Alphabet, FB, APPL, Exxon Mobil, Lockheed Martin, UHG or Northrop Grumman.

wendy davis's picture

@ggersh

for bringing a few different excerpts from ambassador murray's long outrage essay. he's included some of the austrialian MPs support as well (at least 'support' on scanning.

julian's mum adds:

but i think he's being chemically altered in gitmo prison hospital, as well.

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ggersh's picture

@wendy davis what else they are doing to him in Belmarsh

I only wish we/they could do more

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/10/19/assa-o19.html

In a statement to the House of Representatives on Wednesday, independent MP Andrew Wilkie declared that Assange is “an Australian citizen and must be treated like any other Australian. He was not in the US when he provided evidence of US war crimes in Iraq. He can’t possibly have broken their laws.”

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trump will be amerika's last president

There is no way in the American political system to vote against the interests of GS, JPM, Citi, ATT, AMZN, MSFT, WM, Alphabet, FB, APPL, Exxon Mobil, Lockheed Martin, UHG or Northrop Grumman.

wendy davis's picture

@ggersh

and grenfell had also added:

Wilkie’s statements followed comments at the beginning of the week by Nationals’ MP and former deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce, who warned against the far-reaching implications of the US attempt to prosecute Assange, an Australian citizen, under domestic American law, for publishing activities carried out in Europe.

Joyce is a right-wing figure who has played a leading role in governments that have participated in predatory US-led wars in the Middle East and eroded democratic rights in Australia.

Significantly, however, he was among the first MPs to call on the former Coalition government of John Howard to take action for the release of Australian citizen David Hicks from the US military prison in Guantanamo Bay. Hicks’ brutal treatment had provoked widespread outrage, and a campaign for his freedom was winning growing support.

Joyce, a populist who has sought to build a base of support in rural areas, was well aware of the sentiments in favour of Hicks among workers in regional centres and country towns. He played a role in the sordid agreement brokered by Howard, which saw Hicks returned to Australia in 2007. Hicks was forced to serve out a bogus prison sentence in Australia and was banned for a year from speaking to the media.

In comments to the media on Monday, former Labor foreign minister Bob Carr hinted at the concerns animating the comments in defence of Assange by such figures from within the political establishment.

Carr told the Sydney Morning Herald that ordinary people would be “deeply uneasy” about the prospect of an Australian citizen being handed over to the “living hell of a lifetime sentence in an American penitentiary.” He criticised current Foreign Minister Marise Payne over her claim that she made “friendly” representations on behalf of Assange to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Pompeo has denounced Assange as a “demon” who is not entitled to any democratic rights and labelled WikiLeaks as a “non-state hostile intelligence service.”

Carr stated: “I think the issue will gather pace, and in the ultimate trial there will be a high level of Australian public concern, among conservative voters as much as any others.”

as iirc, craaig murray, but from carr's mouth to the gods' ears. but...i'm agnostic. time for a reprise of caitlin johnstone's 'why australia should (needs to repatriate?) repatriate julian assange' (or a title close to those). i'll hunt it down if i can, and bring it in a bit; it was fantastic.

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wendy davis's picture

@wendy davis

Why Bringing Assange Home Would Be The Best Possible Thing For Australia, june 8, 2018; she opens:

“Well I’ll be damned, it’s about time.

According to a new report by the Sydney Morning Herald, officials from Australia’s High Commission have just been spotted leaving the Ecuadorian embassy in London, accompanied by Julian Assange’s lawyer Jennifer Robinson. Robinson confirmed that a meeting had taken place, but declined to say what it was about “given the delicate diplomatic situation.”
So, forgive me if I squee a bit. I am aware how subservient Australia has historically been to US interests, I am aware that those US interests entail the arrest of Assange and the destruction of WikiLeaks, and I am aware that things don’t often work out against the interests of the US-centralized empire. But there is a glimmer of hope now, coming from a direction we’ve never seen before. A certain southerly direction.

If the Australian government stepped in to protect one of its own journalists from being persecuted by the powerful empire that has dragged us into war after war and turned us into an asset of the US war/intelligence machine… well, as an Australian it makes me tear up just thinking about it. It has been absolutely humiliating watching my beloved country being degraded and exploited by the sociopathic agendas of America’s ruling elites, up to and including the imprisonment and isolation of one of our own, all because he helped share authentic, truthful documents exposing the depraved behaviors of those same ruling elites. I have had very few reasons to feel anything remotely resembling patriotism lately. If Australia brought Assange home, this would change.

We Australians do not have a very clear sense of ourselves; if we did we would never have stood for Assange’s persecution in the first place. We tend to form our national identity in terms of negatives, by the fact that we are not British and are not American, without any clear image about what we are. A bunch of white prisoners got thrown onto a gigantic island rich with ancient indigenous culture, we killed most of the continent’s inhabitants and degraded and exploited the survivors, and now we’re just kind of standing around drinking tea as the dust settles saying, “Hmm… well, we’re not stuck-up like the Brits, and we’re not entitled like the Yanks.”

That’s pretty much our entire nation right now. A beautiful continent where the Aboriginal Dreamtime has been paved over with suburbs and shopping centers. We are a warm and charitable people, we value family and community, but we’ve got no sense of who we are and what it means to be Australian.

We try sometimes; there are attempts to uplift Australian art and culture which we call Australiana. I remember going to “bush dances” as a kid where old-timey settler music was played and everyone pretended to have some kind of connection with it. We like meat pies. The footy’s great. But our sense of ourselves has never really taken root.

(@suigenerisjen is jen robinson)

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travelerxxx's picture

@wendy davis

Caity Johnstone has published more today. It's a must read.

An excerpt:

Only Cowards And Sadists Support The Persecution Of Assange

We are watching a great tragedy unfold in a fractal-like way, from the zoomed-out meta tragedy of the worldwide death blow to press freedom, drilled down to the personal tragedy of this death blow to a man called Julian Assange. His once encyclopaedic brain can now barely remember his own birthday. This guts me. There are no other minds on earth that understood the power dynamics of invisible imperialism and the Orwellian dangers humanity now faces as we hurtle towards and AI-dominated information landscape as well as his did. That mind has been purposely destroyed. We must never forget that. We must never forgive that.

There is much more.

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wendy davis's picture

@travelerxxx

and i'll bring a bit more, given it's a bit confusing what of craig murray's brilliant piece she'd quoted, tweets and whatnot:

'Cowardice is driving public support for Assange’s persecution. Cowardice and sadism. Even if every single bogus smear against him were true, from the lies about feces on embassy walls to the still evidence-free allegation of Trump/Russia collusion, even if every single one of those ridiculous fantasies were true, his punishment to date would be more than enough. I mean, exactly how much torture is appropriate because your preferred candidate wasn’t the one who was elected? How weird is it that such entitled sadism goes unquestioned? To continue to call for more is to reveal your sick fetish, whether you’re one of the powerful people he pissed off or just another mindless repeater in the comments section. Enough. You’ve had your pound of flesh.
........................

It’s been a tough day. My heart has been hurting and my sighs have been long. The only brightness I can see through the bleakness is the quandary that appears to be emerging for these nationless plutocrats who are pulling the strings. The more they get their way, the more obvious their actions must necessarily be, because the thing they are attempting to do is so totally abnormal. Yesterday’s court proceedings were blatantly farcical, from the curious rulings, to the strange sight of US advisers interfering in a UK case about an Australian citizen, down to even the dismissive smirk on the judge’s face. None of this is normal, and when things aren’t normal there is a risk that people will notice, and things are only going to get stranger as they attempt to pull this off.'

now her link to 'every single bogus smear' did not seem to include those from edward snowden, glenn greenwald, naomi klein and several other 'fearless investigative journalists' at the Intercept, , and they piss me purple.

perhaps she'd included wikileaks being kicked out of the freedom of the press foundation, which was the anonymizing format for contributions to wikieaks, and other organizations. irrc, it was just after wikileaks had published CIA vault VI, and a bit of vault VII, which he's long surmised is the core reason they're after his ass more than before. i agree.

anyhoo, good on her; she's been a true warrior in defense of julian for the longest time.

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lotlizard's picture

— tamed and confined to toeing the anti-Trump line over at TOP for some years now — would have had something to say in defense of press freedom and true whistleblowers like Julian Assange.

So many people claim to be fighting fascism, but when confronted with fascist torture of a journalist by the authorities, out in the open like this in full view of the world, they cover their eyes and stop their ears.

At least Raúl Ilargi Meijer over at The Automatic Earth doesn’t mince words.
https://www.theautomaticearth.com/2019/10/debt-rattle-october-22-2019/

As Julian Assange has been reduced to a vague shadow of himself, Britain has been reduced to a lawless medieval banana republic, where someone can be tortured to death in full view, while agents of a foreign country run proceedings in the courts.

And the million or so who came out in London for Extinction Rebellion or a Final Say, you are all completely useless drips too. You’re incapable of discerning what is truly important. Which is that your government flouts all laws, British and international, with impunity. And then it makes no difference if those laws are defined by your own country or as part of a European Union. Torturing a man to death in 2019, with nary a protest being heard, is truly taking all of you back to the Middle Ages.

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wendy davis's picture

@lotlizard

and i couldn't agree more with his 'useless drips' metaphor. and since one of the things i love best about his automatic earth is the artwork he features, i'll bring the painting that accompanies today's prose cum exposé; so appropriate it is!

Eugène Delacroix Liberty Leading the People 1830

on edit: i saw an instagram on twitter of the 'X rebellionists' standing on the top of a train during rush hour traffic, trying to shut it down, and commuters throwing stuff at them, pulling them off the train. and guess what? it was a fricking electric train! nice job, drips.

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I am not interested in being scolded about the fact that I have no proof. I think I can state firmly that the means, motive, and opportunity is rock-solidly established. So while I have no proof I have a strong basis for posing this semi-rhetorical (inasmuch as I don't actually expect an answer) question.

Anyone who would like to scoff at the idea should offer proof that the authorities don't have the means, don't have any motive, or don't have any opportunity to drug him.

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wendy davis's picture

@entrepreneur

thread believe he is, including myownself, and some (?) months ago, some noteworthy friend of julian's said directly that he is/was being 'chemically treated', given what he/she'd during a (then) recent visit. cassandra fairbanks, perhaps? although cassandra (of the gateway pundit site) was rightly chastised for what she'd said was a film of him in side the prison, but the date stamp was waaaaay off, so...i dunno.

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@entrepreneur with him being drugged. Someone, maybe snoopydawg, linked an article in one of these essays on Julian to a drug the US has used called BZ I believe? It was tested on US troops and many of them reported not only psychotic episodes during the time that drug was in their systems but afterwards as well. I am lousy at finding links, and God knows one has to be very careful when googling something like that, but I for one would not put that past our owners for one second.

They want him absolutely broken to show just what happens to anyone who dissents and the truly horrifying part is the absolute IDIOTS in this country who not only go along with this but celebrate it! I have friends that no doubt still believe that rape bullshit and no matter what I say or what information I try to provide, I know damned well they're still under that spell. I'm sure those friends are also swallowing whole that latest McCarthyite smears from their "abuela," HER, or as she should be labeled "IT," as well. Makes me so godamned angry. These are the same fucking people who will scream fascism out of the Rump a dump until they are hoarse but will NOT see that this country is fascist to its very core and pretty much ALWAYS has been!

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wendy davis's picture

@lizzyh7

and i did finally dig up my kinda coverage of the question: 'Is Julian Assange being chemically tortured?', may 11, 2019

'Karen Kwiatowski is making that case at Off-Guardian, May 9.

I find that I just need to get this out of my head and leave it here. You may find that I’m a truly paranoid nutbar, but as the old saw goes: just cuz you're paranoid it don't mean that they really ain’t out to get ya! Nor does Kwiatowski offer ‘proof’ save from unnamed source(s): (some snippets):

“The US appears to be a nation of laws, and yet, we absolutely are not. One of many lessons and perspectives we gain from the study of Julian Assange is just that. US political influence and debt-funded largesse resulted in Assange’s ejection from the Ecuadorian Embassy into the UK prison for terrorists in Belmarsh. US domestic corruption and misreading of the Constitution produced his indictment.

Furthermore, US government employees, from the DoD, FBI and the CIA have been interviewing Assange in Belmarsh Prison, prior to any extradition decision.
Interviewing is the wrong word. I’d like to say doctoring him, because it would be more accurate, except that word implies some care for a positive outcome. Chemical Gina has her hands in this one, and we are being told that Assange is being “treated” with 3-quinuclidinyl benzilate, known as BZ. What BZ does, from the New Yorker:

“Exposed soldiers exhibited bizarre symptoms: rapid mumbling, or picking obsessively at bedclothes and other objects, real or imaginary. “…The drug’s effect lasted for days. At its peak, volunteers were totally cut off in their own minds, jolting from one fragmented existence to the next. They saw visions: Lilliputian baseball players competing on a tabletop diamond; animals or people or objects that materialized and vanished. ….

Soldiers on BZ could remember only fragments of the experience afterward. As the drug wore off, and the subjects had trouble discerning what was real, many experienced anxiety, aggression, even terror. Ketchum [Dr. James Ketchum, DoD Edgewood Arsenal, MD] built padded cells to prevent injuries, but at times the subjects couldn’t be contained. One escaped, running from imagined murderers. Another, on a drug similar to BZ, saw “bugs, worms, one snake, a monkey and numerous rats,” and thought his skin was covered in blood. “Subject broke a wooden chair and smashed a hole in the wall after tearing down a 4-by-7-ft panel of padding,” his chart noted. Ketchum and three assistants piled on top of the soldier to subdue him. “He was clearly terrified and convinced we were intending to kill him,” his chart said.

[the lengthy New Yorker link]

“It is difficult to know if the state is more sociopathic or more psychopathic. What US government employees and/or contractors are currently doing to Julian Assange, and those who may have used Wikileaks as a journalistic avenue, may indicate it is the latter. Torture, isolation, brutality, and the use of psychotropic drugs during interrogations and hiding this from the defendant’s own lawyers by denying them access — this is Lubyanka in the 1950s, not London and DC in 2019.

Allow me to get to the point. The latest word I have received from England is as follows:
“[Julian Assange] is presently under close observation in prison hospital because he has suffered ‘severe transient psychotic episodes.’ My source(s) indicate these episodes occurred after two sessions of coercive interrogation at the hands of UK and US officials. The source(s) stated the HUMINT interrogators used psychotropic drugs in the course of the sessions.”

There are no words. Nothing can be said. 2 plus 2 does equal 5. The FBI is our own special Cheka. The CIA Director’s hands are wet and her organization does not serve American values. Rather than choosing to stay secretive for national security, the modern CIA must stay secretive in order to survive, because it has become functionally illegal. Our president, who puts America first, is putting American values last, even as he tweets his concern for freedom of speech.

The agenda is to destroy Assange as a human being, and they may well succeed. In doing this evil deed, in all of our names, America herself – whether we put her first, last, or somewhere in the middle – will have dug her own grave.”

as i said in the OP, i'd kept on hunting, and had run into comments under a piece at consortium news:

Comment: Update from Pepe Escobar: IMPORTANT UPDATE ON POSSIBLE TORTURE OF JULIAN ASSANGE: This adds up to my previous post on Assange possibly being tortured in jail – according to retired USAF Lt. Col. Karin Kwiatkowski.

My great friend Joe Lauria at Consortium News tell me, “Karin is backing away from her statements and has removed her tweet. She says she was just ‘speculating about this when asked a question a couple of weeks ago. Some people think she may have been set up by a source to have her report this and thereby discredit VIPS, of which she is a member.

The attempt to discredit VIPS – who are EXTREMELY professional and in fact unimpeachable – makes total sense. They have been relentless debunking the WHOLE Russiagate narrative. I found it strange that Pamela Anderson and Kristinn Hrafnsson from WikiLeaks visited Julian on Tuesday and did not say anything about his condition being like this.

Besides, the UN rapporteur on torture saw Julian yesterday. Joe tells me “he had a doctor with him who examined Julian, and he said nothing when he met with the press afterward.”
Anyway, here are the facts. But I STILL don’t put beyond Chemical Gina and his goons to “interfere” with Julian in jail. “

but her tweet was still there, and as addendum from wd:

I'm fairly certain that it was BZ toxin that Sergei Lavrov had believed had incapacitated the disappeared Skripals, fwiw.

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@wendy davis nutbar then I am one too and today, I am damned proud of my nutbar status. Thanks for that article, that was the one I remembered. These people are psychotic IMHO, there just is no other word for what they are doing. The ones who REALLY piss me off are the lemmings who blindly swallow this crap. Sure they've been propagandized and trained over a lifetime but if you refuse to see what is in front of your own eyes then my sympathy evaporates. Willful ignorance is worse than stupidity, much worse, IMHO.

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wendy davis's picture

@lizzyh7

willful ignorance is fr worse that stupidity, amiga. someone posited to me on the boards recently that so many of the best and brightest believe the basic tenets behind russ-gate. er...i think not. in fact, and not altogether OT:

when i posted a lot of what the journalists at the duran had to say about the expanding investigations of mueller and durham investigating the spooky origins of that rubbish a couple days ago, they'd noted on the video that they needed to speak with julian assange. i'd said they sure have missed their chance, now that he's no longer compos mentus in bellmarsh hospital. they had their chance, of course, long ago, but the amerikan DoJ wouldn't guarantee him safe passage.

and as i'd said, every single fucking one of them who contributed to his eternal imprisonment, likely death...cause some barbaric thought crimes to rise in me.

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@wendy davis Lavrov did say that the Skripal's symptoms were more consistent with BZ than Novichok. There was some BZ in samples collected from the Skripal's environs and sent to a testing lab in Switzerland, although I don't think the concentration was high. One interesting thing is that the symptoms of BZ are delayed which would fit with what we know of the Skripal's time line (i.e. there is no way they would have contacted Novichok at their house and then had lunch, fed ducks, etc. before coming down with symptoms). The difference between the effective dose and lethal dose for BZ is large and people recover after a while, but I have no idea of long-term effects of chronic administration. I wonder if Porton Down (the oldest chemical warfare research lab in the world and 6-8 miles from the Sergei Skripal's house) is working on new acetylcholine receptor agonists. I am sure that Sergei came to live in Salisbury because he likes the cathedral or wants to be near Stonehenge; nothing to do with Porton Down, I'm sure.

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wendy davis's picture

@Roy Blakeley

amigo, and thanks for confirming. i'd been racking what's left of my brain trying to remember what bernhard at MoA had thought back in the day, and iirc, it was botulism poisoning from the restaurant. but BZ kept running thru my head, and when i'd looked it up, the scientific description was too much for me to grasp.

the named symptoms, though, seem somewhat related to the untrained.

but also, i did bingle for, and find this: REVEALED: Pentagon’s $70 Million Chemical & Biological Program at Porton Down in UK, March 28, 2018, Dilyana Gaytandzhieva, 21st century wire, FWIW she begins:

The Pentagon has spent at least $70 million on military experiments involving tests with deadly viruses and chemical agents at Porton Down – the UK military laboratory near the city of Salisbury. The secretive biological and chemical research facility is located just 13 km from where on 4th March former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found slumped on a bench following an alleged Novichok nerve agent poisoning.

Information obtained from the US federal contracts registry reveals that the Pentagon’s Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) has funded a number of military projects performed at the UK Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL), or Porton Down, over the last decade. Among them: experimental respiratory infection of non-human primates (marmosets) with Anthrax, Ebola virus, Marburg virus, Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus, Western equine encephalitis virus, and Eastern equine encephalitis virus. The US Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) has also funded experiments on animals which were exposed to chemical agents such as Sulfur Mustard and Phosgene gas. Phosgene gas was used as a chemical weapon during World War I where it was responsible for about 85 % of the 100,000 deaths caused by chemical weapons.

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@entrepreneur I’ve been led to believe that solitary confinement is an effective way of breaking someone, regardless of other techniques. Then add drugs, poor nutrition, harsh and/or inappropriate lighting, attacks on the diurnal cycle, and a panoply of sound assaults, ranging from high frequency to infrasound, and Belmarsh has many opportunities to slowly kill him, using techniques refined over decades, with no single instance to point to.

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wendy davis's picture

@tle

see nils melzer's reports of the same, as well as clinical psychologist @LissaKJohnson in the tweet via mama assange:

on later edit: i found it:

In court #JulianAssange said “I can’t think properly”. That is what prolonged solitary confinement does. It attacks victims’ brains #Torture
do you know whose bright idea solitary confinement in amerika was? the quakers...so a prisoner could commune with god in silence.

(i'd researched the issue as (then) chelsea manning was being tortured at quantico by solitary and forced to stand at attention in her underwear for hours on end, with the lights always blaring. gawd's blood, what monsters do this sort of evil?

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Cassiodorus's picture

See e.g. what happened to Slobodan Milosevic.

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"I was Zuckerberging people before Zuckerberg's balls dropped." -- the Devil, on "Rick and Morty"

lotlizard's picture

@Cassiodorus  
http://www.iskcon-truth.com/poison/prabhupada-poisoned-overview.html

Very possibly the victim of poisoning by arsenic, mercury, or cadmium compounds added to his food and drink over an extended period.

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wendy davis's picture

@Cassiodorus

i'm not sure it's a parallel situation with milosevic, but as i remember it, he was posthumously found not guilty of war crimes after he died in the prison at the hague.

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Wally's picture

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wendy davis's picture

@Wally

'evolved'/s. he used to simply say that assange shouldn't be charged under the espionage act, and that must have been post-April 12, and many berniecrats apparently called him out on it. meh.

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snoopydawg's picture

@Wally

He is a journalist who has never had to offer a retraction unlike the current crop of stenographers who still can't get their facts straight.

Bernie has been very weak on what is happening to Assange. But Wally..that is not the point of this essay. Support your candidate, but know when to do so.

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

wendy davis's picture

@snoopydawg

should have noted that to the 'fearless investigative journos' at the intercept, namely greenwald and snowden, assange is known as 'the bad whistleblower', and has been since kim dotcom's internet party confab at the aukland town hall years ago. stir in the hits by naomi klein, micah lee, and a few others...pffft on TI, pierre, and all of them can kiss my grits and worse.

i see ryan grim's name on the byline in the tweet, but can't even want to give the place a click to discover which other, and how many 'journalists' there penned this.

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wendy davis's picture

@Wally .

i was about to ask him if he'd make sure julian is freed 'if he's elected', but it dinnae seem worth the effort. 42 comments or so, and his was the sole comment to drag in a D candidate for prez. vexing.

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Wally's picture

@snoopydawg @wendy davis

The charge against Julian is very specific; conspiring with Chelsea Manning to publish the Iraq War logs, the Afghanistan war logs and the State Department cables.

If Manning can't be so prosecuted, then Assange can't be prosecuted for conspiracy with her.

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snoopydawg's picture

@Wally

This essay is not about Bernie or Manning. It's about the persecution of Julian Assange. Period. It is impolite to derail essays like you are doing here and have in others. Please just stick as close to the topic of essays you enter. This is not the first time you have done it, but it is the first time I'm saying something about it. You aren't the only one who does this, but here it is very noticeable. You just doubled down... do you see that?

Again...

Support your candidate, but know when to do so.

ETA

If Manning can't be so prosecuted, then Assange can't be prosecuted for conspiracy with her.

This is not true. We might be told that it's the reason he's being prosecuted, but there are over 15 charges against him. The one about him helping Chelsea 'break' into the server is just for show to make people believe that he isn't being charged for publishing what he did. The grand jury does not need Chelsea's testimony because she already testified to what she did that got her courts martial. But putting her in jail for refusing to testify against Julian is just one more scare tactic meant to send people a threatening message. Don't publish our secrets or we will get you.

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

CS in AZ's picture

@Wally

With apologies in advance for adding to this thread, may I point out that Chelsea Manning was *already* prosecuted and spent seven years in prison for it. How do you not know that?

Right now, she’s in jail again, for refusing to testify against Assange as the U.S. tries to obtain evidence for a conviction against him once he’s extradited. They already gave her immunity from further prosecution if she testifies. She won’t, so she sits in jail rather than do that. Your comment makes no sense whatsoever.

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wendy davis's picture

@CS in AZ

additionally, she's being fined one thousand amerikan dollars for every day she refuses to testify, due to her principled stand that grand juries are secret, therefore illegal (or should be). as is often said, 'a grand jury could indict a ham sandwich', as in: no defense attorneys are permitted behind those close doors.

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@Wally You absolutely cannot mansplain it away.

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@Wally but you, as a Bernie advocate, seem to be saying Bernie advocates are ok with...BULLSHIT.
There are times and there are places to try to persuade.
This is neither the time, nor the place.
Don't do this. Notice NOBODY gave you a click.
What does it take for you to do anything but talk about the greatness of Bernie?

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Wally's picture

@wendy davis @snoopydawg @on the cusp

Thank you for your concern about me not doing "my cause" any good.

I own what? Assange being prosecuted? Wow!

Yea, right now he's being prosecuted for extradition.

To face charges for what? Where? In conjuction with conspiring with whom?

Manning was granted clemency by Obama. Last I noticed, she is still appealing her conviction which can take years.

Really, pardon me for not shutting down a possibility, even remote as it may be, that an Attorney General along the lines of a Ramsey Clark is so appointed, could work wonders.

Sometimes this place feels waaaay too much like the other place.

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wendy davis's picture

@Wally

..........................

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wendy davis's picture

on edit: a sky news journalist, iirc.

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wendy davis's picture

i reckon i just gotta go with this jeff buckley cover of dylan's song, and ask once again:

will death be julian's final release? hard for me to think it's not so...

pray for him if ya got 'em, can't say i'll pray to them who've put him here to repent, see the light. fuck 'em; they're on their own.

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it should be possible to declare the case against Julian illegitimate because the U. S. government had eavesdropped on his defense preparations.

https://consortiumnews.com/2019/10/22/editorial-dont-railroad-julian-ass...

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wendy davis's picture

@laurel

said, the tapes that amerika now owns recording meeting with his psychologists should have caused the case to be thrown out. it worked for daniel elsberg in 1971. but for julian, there are no legal 'niceties' at play, everything about his prosecution, persecution is political, which should have already mooted any possibility of assange's being extradited to amerika the beautiful.

thanks, laurel.

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@wendy davis , it was the writer of the editorial itself (unsigned, which seems a little unusual for Consortium News). Not sure how much difference that makes but maybe it's worth mentioning.

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wendy davis's picture

@laurel

one another, and yes the editorial mentioned assange saying that all his interviews with his shrink were taped, but from commeter:

Ronelle
October 22, 2019 at 14:22

Daniel Ellsberg was spared a life in prison only because Nixon sent a goon squad to California to steal Ellsberg’s psychiatrist’s notes. Ellsberg walked out of court a free man because his civil rights to a fair trial had been abrogated. Back in 1971 there still was a little justice.

Now the US has obtained illegally filmed video of the private conversations between Julian and his psychologists and lawyers and he still remains in prison!? Every one of Assange’s civil rights have already been imperiously flaunted by several countries – including Ecuador which gave him asylum and imperiously took it back. Obviously, there is no civilized law the countries of this world will not unabashedly break to vindictively punish him and scare away all independent truth telling journalists.

plus everything julian owned but the book he carried on the way to the van to belmarsh prison was confiscated and given to the amerikan Injustice dept. at least that's how i read the editorial.

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wendy davis's picture

the additional 17 charges (under the espionage act) to assange's original indictment imply/charge, etc., and this is a compilation of things i'd found before ending up at the hill.

"Today the government charged Julian Assange under the Espionage Act for encouraging sources to provide him truthful information and for publishing that information," Assange's attorney Barry J Pollack said in a statement. "The fig leaf that this is merely about alleged computer hacking has been removed. These unprecedented charges demonstrate the gravity of the threat the criminal prosecution of Julian Assange poses to all journalists in their endeavor to inform the public about actions that have been taken by the U.S. government."

“The department takes seriously the role of journalists in our democracy,” Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Demers said.

Demers and other officials said they only charged Assange with publishing a narrow subset of material that included the names of confidential sources, including people who risked their lives talking to the U.S. government.

“Assange thereby is alleged to have created grave and imminent risk to their lives and liberty,” Demers said.

He is also charged with publishing a select range of the classified documents that revealed the names of low-level, local sources utilized by the U.S. government, including Afghan and Iraqi nationals, as well as journalists, human rights activists, and religious leaders.
“These alleged actions disclosed our sensitive classified information in a manner that made it available to every terrorist group, hostile foreign intelligence service and opposing military,” said John Demers, the assistant attorney general for DOJ’s national security division.

“Documents relating to these disclosures were even found in the Osama bin Laden compound. This release made our adversaries stronger and more knowledgeable, and the United States less secure.”

wikileaks.org has provided their response to the new charges, and provides a pdf of the additional charges. i'll include what's not in my compilation above:

The charges relate to disclosures of war crimes and human rights abuses by the US government, including the groundbreaking Collateral murder video, Iraq War Logs, Afghan War Diaries, Cablegate, and the Guantanamo Bay Detainee Manuals, published in 2010 and 2011.

The US Department of Justice indictment states that "Assange, Manning, and others shared the objective to further the mission of WikiLeaks, as an "intelligence agency of the people,"... in order to disclose that information to the public and inspire others with access to do the same." With this indictment, the Trump Administration seeks to do just the opposite: to cripple the free press and send a message that no journalist deserving of the description is safe from reprisal.

The Department of Justice wants to imprison Assange for crimes allegedly committed outside of the United States. This extraterritorial application of US law is explicit throughout the indictment ("in an offense begun and committed outside of the jurisdiction of any particular state or district of the United States"), thereby classifying any territory in the world as subject to US law.

In response to the unprecedented espionage charges filed against Julian Assange today, WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Kristinn Hrafnsson declared: "This is the evil of lawlessness in its purest form. With the indictment, the 'leader of the free world' dismisses the First Amendment -- hailed as a model of press freedom around the world -- and launches a blatant extraterritorial assault outside its borders, attacking basic principles of democracy in Europe and the rest of the world."

The indictment carries serious implications for WikiLeaks publishing partners, numbering over one hundred across the globe, including The New York Times, The Telegraph and The Guardian, who collaborated on the publications and may now face co-defendant charges.

The final decision on Assange's extradition rests with the UK Home Secretary, who is now under enormous pressure to protect the rights of the free press in the U.K. and elsewhere. Press rights advocates have unanimously argued that Assange's prosecution under the Espionage Act is incompatible with basic democratic principles.

This is the gravest attack on press freedom of the century.

some of you may remember which paper (the guardian?) gave out the password to some tranche of leaked info (strafor files?) that wikieaks hadn't intended to publish unredacted.

the other thing is the wording that amount to 'soliciting leaks for publication', and yes, wikileaks had done that. so what? apparently the DoJ believes that's a crime as well. but my guess is that given the fact that the Injustice dept. had offered both alleged leaker of the CIA vaults joshua adam schulte immunity to testify against julian....
as well as assange's avowed arch-enemy daniel dumb-shit borg, same deal...'solicting leaks' may be a big deal.

see, originally (iirc) they'd just been investigating schulte's laptop for porn...the the rest blossomed up.

now the indictment pdf filed may 23, 2019 is a mere 37 pages (aarrgh).

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@wendy davis
with for outing Valerie Plame.

"... that included the names of confidential sources, including people who risked their lives talking to the U.S. government.
“Assange thereby is alleged to have created grave and imminent risk to their lives and liberty,” Demers said.

Oh, that's right, DC did this plus he shot a man in the face and evaded police until he sobered up, and not a thing happened to him.

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wendy davis's picture

@entrepreneur

thanks, i needed the chuckles. but the outing of valerie plame was a contest among the cast of players, wasn't it? richrd armitage via robert novak, scooter libby...and judith miller?

but score another one for general CIA david petraeus's (stand at attention and salute, please) 'pillow talk' with his lover. i've forgotten which classified nothings he'd whispered in her ear. he's still in prison, yes?

different stokes for different folks, and so on and so on and...

i'd read another report from wsws this morning on the sham at judge bairatser's magistrate court of injustice, and richard tyler has included a few more depressing and outrageous bits:

Beginning at 9am, protestors loudly chanted “Free Julian Assange!” and “There’s only one decision—No extradition!” as other supporters queued up to attend the hearing. In a provocative move, the police, some in plain clothes, ordered the construction of a tiny fenced area into which they wanted to corral the demonstration. At one point an officer warned that the Tactical Support Group would be deployed if protesters didn’t move behind the barriers. All refused, but police decided not to risk a clash in front of many journalists and independent media representatives.

After over two hours, Emmy Butlin from the Julian Assange Defence Committee came out to explain what had been happening in court. Visibly upset, Emmy told the crowd: “Julian Assange’s condition is deteriorating daily, daily. What is he doing in there? Why are they torturing him? In front of our eyes, his health is failing him. Don’t let this injustice happen in front of our eyes. We will lose him.”

Emmy explained that a request for a three-month delay had been rejected by Judge Vanessa Baraitser, who also proposed that the February court hearing take place in Belmarsh Magistrates’ Court where there are just five seats [although their report yesterday claimed three seats] in the public gallery. This news was met with cries of “Shame! Shame!”

Socialist Equality Party (UK) National Secretary Chris Marsden addressed the demonstration, He explained: “It says on the front of this court, Dieu et Mon Droit—God and My Right! It also says established in 2011. That’s the last year Julian Assange enjoyed freedom.

“They have no right, no right to do what they are doing. Right is with us. Right is with the defenders of Julian Assange, the opponents of imperialist war, imperialist war crimes…

“Everybody here is here with right on their side—against a frame-up, a conspiracy and a criminal justice system that is working to silence whistle-blowers, opponents of war and colonialism, and criminality on an industrial scale which has claimed millions of lives.

“This is their court. Our court is the court of international public opinion! Everywhere there is a growing awareness of the gravity of the crime that is being perpetrated against Julian Assange. We want the working class to defend a man whose freedom is of paramount importance for every man, woman and child on this planet…. We will not accept this fraud of a trial on trumped up charges—175 years for espionage, for committing the crime of journalism!

ah, well; that's enough. i should go work on the coup afoot in boliia against evo morales's election win for something more uplifting. another US color revolution seems to be brewing, not unlike he-crowns-himself-king juan guaido in VZ.

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@wendy davis
on this despicable situation.

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wendy davis's picture

@entrepreneur
for the reminder of the cheney-whittington gambit, a variation on the fibonacci maneuver.
; )

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@wendy davis , and what you dug up rings bells for me as info I've come across, thought about, and should have saved (but if we did that religiously, we'd probably end up needing our own data servers!)

Yes, I remember the allegation that Julian "encouraged" Chelsea, but as I recall, it was in response to a request that she had made of him. So it's not like he was actively spurring whistleblowers into action. As a publisher, they came to him. So the government is exaggerating, i.e., falsifying the truth.

Beautiful description of Wikileaks as "an intelligence agency of the people." Since the current political battle can be boiled down to a war between the establishment and the people, organizations like Wikileaks (and all investigative journalism) are on the front lines of this battle. So "the establishment vs. the people" can be accurately expressed as "lawlessness vs. the U.S. Constitution," or "MIC vs. democratic governance," or simply, a ruthless coup taking place right before our eyes. This concept needs to be shared widely with everyone we know. There is now so much evidence in support of it that I don't think the label "conspiracy theory" can fit.

However, it troubles me that this should be attributed to Trump, as many of us know that it began back in the 70s/80s with the Powell Memo and supply side economics, continued through the 90s with the demolition of the Democratic Party by Al From and Bill Clinton, culminating in the triumph of PNAC via 9/11. Trump may want to keep his secrets, but he doesn't seem to hate the idea of a free press. In fact, one of the platforms he ran on was the breaking up of Clinton's 1996 media monopoly, and he had a fine position paper on it which has mysteriously disappeared off the web. He complains about fake news, clumsily resorting to Twitter to communicate with the American people, and once upon a time he liked Wikileaks. I don't doubt that he's cooperating with the CIA-led effort to destroy Assange, but I do doubt that it can be called his effort. Maybe attributing it to Trump is just a shorthand way of saying, "the bad guys on top," or even "the accepted scapegoat." As long as people don't actually believe it started with Trump, because that assumption leaves us misinformed.

"Any territory in the world as subject to US law," is about as good a tip-off on the global (totalitarian) reach of this coup as any one could ask for. They aren't even trying to hide their true face from us, although I fear there is worse to come in that regard. That's why the sham trial, the sneering judge, the flippant disregard for what we used to call the rule of law.

As for the revelation of damaging information about real people, Julian was famous for his careful redacting of any such information ever getting out. He was meticulously responsible in that regard. Yes, I recall the it was the Guardian who let that stuff out, which is not surprising as the once-respectable Guardian is now a piece of shit wholly owned by the Deep State/CIA. Same for WaPo and NYTimes, but most of us know that. But yes they're laying the responsibility for it on Julian, which may very well have been the intention.

Lastly, I do believe that there is a bizarre little side-train to all this coup activity, particularly that which expresses itself through smear campaigns against Julian, Tulsi, Russia, Bernie, and even Trump -- and that is the fury of a woman scorned, a narcissist rejected, a Gollum denied his Precious. The Clintons have a lot of money, numerous high-powered connections, and some kind of dealings with the Epstein leftovers that make them even more dangerous. And on that note, I'd like to share a video that Tulsi sent out this morning --

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wendy davis's picture

@laurel

understanding of what amerkia has become by bringing such a long historical narrative. i'd add sheldon wolin's positing in 2003: 'inverted totalitarianism', the wiki short hands in part:

The political philosopher Sheldon Wolin coined the term inverted totalitarianism in 2003 to describe what he saw as the emerging form of government of the United States. Wolin analysed the United States as increasingly turning into a managed democracy (similar to an illiberal democracy). He uses the term "inverted totalitarianism" to draw attention to the totalitarian aspects of the American political system while emphasizing its differences from proper totalitarianism, such as Nazi and Stalinist regimes.

Every natural resource and living being is commodified and exploited by *large corporations to the point of collapse as excess consumerism and sensationalism lull and manipulate the citizenry into surrendering their liberties and their participation in government.

[*including of course US War, Inc.]

Wolin describes this development toward inverted totalitarianism in terms of two conflicting political power centers, namely the constitutional imaginary and the power imaginary. Wolin speaks of imaginaries to include political tendencies as well as existing political conditions. He explains:

A political imaginary involves going beyond and challenging current capabilities, inhibitions, and constraints regarding power and its proper limits and improper uses. It envisions an organization of resources, ideal as well as material, in which a potential attributed to them becomes a challenge to realize it.

A power imaginary is usually accompanied by a justifying mission ("to defeat communism" or "to hunt out terrorists wherever they may hide") that requires capabilities measured against an enemy whose powers are dynamic but whose exact location indeterminate.

The power imaginary does not only reduce democracy within the United States, it also promotes the United States as "Superpower" that develops and expands its current position as the only global superpower.

, etc.

now i'm not able to speak to trump's liking for a freer media, as he campaigned on a lot of things he never did/portrayed. and of course i remember him tweeting his ♥ for wikileaks! nor can i speak to his being captured by the CIA borg as the power behind the throne, but i do think there have been several palace coups against boss tweet already, and there must be some reason he seems rather sanguine about it all. polling?

even (or maybe especially) given your last paragraph, i'll decline your offer to watch the video, albeit it you and others might dub what she says ad you've written as a 'coincidence theory', rather than a conspiracy theory. yes, tusli spoke truth to clinton (and good on her), and has won the hearts and minds of many, many alternative websites since. tulsi's gained so much praise, so many new followers that she could have paid for the amount of free advertising drone-assange-clinton gave her. sorry... but i do not trust her, nor any of the candidates (nor 'the squad'), given the disconnects between what they virtue-signal and how they vote.

and as it turns out re: bernie & whistleblowers? from RT.com:

thanks, laurel. p.s. n edit: nor do i want to further politicize this thread w/ another D candidate for prez, okay?

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