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Excerpt: "Mr. Assange is not an American citizen, and none of his actions have taken place on American soil. If the United States can prosecute a journalist in these circumstances, the governments of Russia or China could, by the same logic, demand that foreign reporters anywhere on earth be extradited for violating their laws. The setting of such a precedent should deeply concern everyone, admirers of WikiLeaks or not."

The British government has the right under the relevant treaty to prevent Mr. Assange's extradition to the United States from Sweden, but has refused to pledge that it would use this power. Ecuador's attempts to facilitate that arrangement with both governments were rejected. (photo: Time Magazine)
The British government has the right under the relevant treaty to prevent Mr. Assange's extradition to the United States from Sweden, but has refused to pledge that it would use this power. Ecuador's attempts to facilitate that arrangement with both governments were rejected. (photo: Time Magazine)


WikiLeaks and Free Speech

By Michael Moore and Oliver Stone, The New York Times

21 August 12

 

e have spent our careers as filmmakers making the case that the news media in the United States often fail to inform Americans about the uglier actions of our own government. We therefore have been deeply grateful for the accomplishments of WikiLeaks, and applaud Ecuador's decision to grant diplomatic asylum to its founder, Julian Assange, who is now living in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London.

Ecuador has acted in accordance with important principles of international human rights. Indeed, nothing could demonstrate the appropriateness of Ecuador's action more than the British government's threat to violate a sacrosanct principle of diplomatic relations and invade the embassy to arrest Mr. Assange.

Since WikiLeaks' founding, it has revealed the "Collateral Murder" footage that shows the seemingly indiscriminate killing of Baghdad civilians by a United States Apache attack helicopter; further fine-grained detail about the true face of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars; United States collusion with Yemen's dictatorship to conceal our responsibility for bombing strikes there; the Obama administration's pressure on other nations not to prosecute Bush-era officials for torture; and much more.

Predictably, the response from those who would prefer that Americans remain in the dark has been ferocious. Top elected leaders from both parties have called Mr. Assange a "high-tech terrorist." And Senator Dianne Feinstein, the California Democrat who leads the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, has demanded that he be prosecuted under the Espionage Act. Most Americans, Britons and Swedes are unaware that Sweden has not formally charged Mr. Assange with any crime. Rather, it has issued a warrant for his arrest to question him about allegations of sexual assault in 2010.

All such allegations must be thoroughly investigated before Mr. Assange moves to a country that might put him beyond the reach of the Swedish justice system. But it is the British and Swedish governments that stand in the way of an investigation, not Mr. Assange.

Swedish authorities have traveled to other countries to conduct interrogations when needed, and the WikiLeaks founder has made clear his willingness to be questioned in London. Moreover, the Ecuadorean government made a direct offer to Sweden to allow Mr. Assange to be interviewed within Ecuador's embassy. In both instances, Sweden refused.

Mr. Assange has also committed to traveling to Sweden immediately if the Swedish government pledges that it will not extradite him to the United States. Swedish officials have shown no interest in exploring this proposal, and Foreign Minister Carl Bildt recently told a legal adviser to Mr. Assange and WikiLeaks unequivocally that Sweden would not make such a pledge. The British government would also have the right under the relevant treaty to prevent Mr. Assange's extradition to the United States from Sweden, and has also refused to pledge that it would use this power. Ecuador's attempts to facilitate that arrangement with both governments were rejected.

Taken together, the British and Swedish governments' actions suggest to us that their real agenda is to get Mr. Assange to Sweden. Because of treaty and other considerations, he probably could be more easily extradited from there to the United States to face charges. Mr. Assange has every reason to fear such an outcome.The Justice Department recently confirmed that it was continuing to investigate WikiLeaks, and just-disclosed Australian government documents from this past February state that "the U.S. investigation into possible criminal conduct by Mr. Assange has been ongoing for more than a year." WikiLeaks itself has published e-mails from Stratfor, a private intelligence corporation, which state that a grand jury has already returned a sealed indictment of Mr. Assange. And history indicates Sweden would buckle to any pressure from the United States to hand over Mr. Assange. In 2001 the Swedish government delivered two Egyptians seeking asylum to the C.I.A., which rendered them to the Mubarak regime, which tortured them.

If Mr. Assange is extradited to the United States, the consequences will reverberate for years around the world. Mr. Assange is not an American citizen, and none of his actions have taken place on American soil. If the United States can prosecute a journalist in these circumstances, the governments of Russia or China could, by the same logic, demand that foreign reporters anywhere on earth be extradited for violating their laws. The setting of such a precedent should deeply concern everyone, admirers of WikiLeaks or not.

We urge the people of Britain and Sweden to demand that their governments answer some basic questions: Why do the Swedish authorities refuse to question Mr. Assange in London? And why can neither government promise that Mr. Assange will not be extradited to the United States? The citizens of Britain and Sweden have a rare opportunity to make a stand for free speech on behalf of the entire globe.


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+149 # Lisa Moskow 2012-08-21 10:58
THANK YOU FOR THIS MOST IMPORTANT POINT.

ASSANGE IS A WHISTLEBLOWER. THE SEX CHARGES ARE OBVIOUSLY TRUMPED-UP BECAUSE
YOU WILL NEVER SEE A "SHE-SAID-HE-SAID"
"rape" case in court. THAT IS BECAUSE
YOU CAN'T PROSECUTE WITHOUT EVIDENCE.
SHAME ON ENGLAND AND SWEDEN FOR THEIR PART IN THIS TRAVESTY OF JUSTICE. THE SHAME OF THE US IN THIS MATTER GOES WITHOUT SAYING.
 
 
+68 # readerz 2012-08-21 12:13
I do not know Swedish law, but in America, legally the actual rape victim is only a "witness" to their own crime, and if some powerful institution is involved (such as a rape occurring on a campus, committed by a favorite sports team member), sometimes the legal victim, "society," decides not to prosecute even in the presence of DNA evidence. But without any evidence at all, in the United States there is no case at all. The murder trial of Robert Chambers who killed Jennifer Levin during "rough sex" was never called rape; if that wasn't "legitimate," then I don't know what would be "legitimate rape" in the U.S. I am all for more strict legal guidelines concerning rape, and not the description of the crime proposed by Reps. Akin and Romney-Ryan. But the charges against Mr. Assange look like trumped-up charges; none of the evidence has been revealed to the press, and it is possible, and probable, that there is no evidence. At least in the U.S., unfortunately, aside from the victim's name, everything about any criminal trial is public, including the graphic details and evidence. I had to tell the details of my rape in 1985 to a 45 person grand jury in New York, and the DNA evidence was also given by the police.

As to freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and the rights of citizens to make inquiries that pertain to their own and everybody else's health and safety, Mr. Assange should be able to have his rights.
 
 
-43 # brux 2012-08-21 12:41
> But the charges against Mr. Assange look like trumped-up charges; none of the evidence has been revealed to the press, and it is possible, and probable, that there is no evidence.

This is the only real point, and of course the government says it is to protect the victims.

I don't know, and neither do any of the rest of you, but it ought to be a clue that assange has some issues even if it is just being rough or rude enough to at least two of the women he slept with to get to them inquire legally about what their rights were.

assange also never did deny anything in the media either or call these trumped up charges ... although he is correct when he says it is a witchhunt.

assange ought to to have the sense not to get himself into these circumstances with women, if he actually did anything.

we do not know, but i would be equally bothered by a high-profile lefty being given a free pass to commit crimes as i would a koch brother or anyone else.

assange got himself into this, and he needs to get himself out of it. i applaud the ecuadorian embassy for at least sheltering him while this is played out.
 
 
+4 # indian weaver 2012-08-21 14:20
brux - see my comment below and my quote from a Swedish national living in Sweden, who emailed me regarding the Assange case, as understood by the Swedish citizens and legal system. My quotation below will answer many of your questions above.
 
 
+7 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 20:33
More So Sweden who is supposedly against many attrocities. Obviously not injustice
 
 
+68 # indian weaver 2012-08-21 11:01
These 2 international heroes are the true Patriots, not unlike Patrick Henry, Paul Revere, George Washington, Ben Franklin et. al. We're pleased to see them published in the NY Times, a reasonable newspaper not yet completely censored or threatened by our government to dissuade the publication of truth, and not constant and overwhelming media lies we see from NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX, etc. And to have their article also published on the international news forum Al-Jazeera. With the humiliation of England, Sweden and Amerika ongoing and increasing due to Ecuador's incredible courage - not to mention Assange's and all WikiLeaks and associated free speech forums' courage - I urge networked folks worldwide to continue attention to these developments which are truly historic and encouraging. Assange should be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and Obama, should he ever gain any courage, needs to relinquish his Nobel Peace Prize in order not to sully it any further. And contact the Nobel committee to voice your disgust at their collapse of ethical and moral actions. Obama would have refused this award were he to have any integrity and honor at all, knowing he deserves no respect from anyone.
 
 
+10 # unitedwestand 2012-08-21 12:07
President Obama said he would donate the financial gift that came with the Nobel Peace Prize. That's something.
 
 
+19 # Kwelinyingi 2012-08-21 18:33
Quoting unitedwestand:
President Obama said he would donate the financial gift that came with the Nobel Peace Prize. That's something.

This, as noble as it sounds, does not vindicate President Obama as CIC, for his callous crimes against innocent women and children.
 
 
+15 # Archie1954 2012-08-21 12:12
100% correct!
 
 
+98 # Small Family Farmer 2012-08-21 11:01
Ah yes, "change we can believe in" and "transparency in government." Right Mr. Obama, your administration has certainly delivered on your promises.

Actually, in Obama's defense, my suspicion is that shortly after the inauguration each new POTUS is taken to a building in DC by people who aren't officially on any payroll, to a room that doesn't exist on any floor plan. Once there they are informed of the "real" situation in the world, who "really" is the power in the world, and what will happen to the new POTUS and/or his family if he doesn't play the "game."

All that is needed to make the point is an explanation of what "really" happened to JFK.
 
 
+49 # tomo 2012-08-21 11:30
What Small Family Farmer proposes may seem preposterous, but it would help to explain the sea-change that took place between some of the campaigning promises of 2008 and Obama's actual performance. More plausible is that a very opportunistic young man read the signs of the times even as he was campaigning, and made in private the promises and gave the signals that reassured important backers that he could be trusted not to take seriously the promises he was making publicly.
 
 
+13 # brux 2012-08-21 12:47
If anything remotely like this happens it is done during the lives of the people who have a chance to become President.

Obama minced his words very carefully, and in his mind at least in the words he has said about it he is consistent with the mood and values of the country - that is why he is more or less popular even though he has not gotten a whole lot done because of these Republican games.

Even if he is re-elected I doubt he will change his stands on any of his decisions or efforts.
 
 
+24 # Observer 47 2012-08-21 14:43
What Small Family Farmer proposes doesn't seem at all preposterous if one does much reading. In fact, I've believed that the scenario he describes is accurate since right after the 2008 election. Nothing else explains the 180 that Obama did on almost every promise he made. Unless, of course, he was just playing a game from the beginning, which is also possible.

Farmer's reference to JFK is spot on. It's no coincidence that Kennedy was assassinated six weeks after he proposed a complete withdrawal from Vietnam. The CIA and MIC weren't going to let such a withdrawal happen.
 
 
+55 # readerz 2012-08-21 12:18
After he spoke to the military after he became President-Elect , he did indeed change. I'm hoping that there is some improvement. As a woman, I must vote for Pres. Obama; the alternative is more frightening than I, as a woman, can imagine. What is the difference between "honor killings" and prosecuting a woman for murder who has a miscarriage? Or not letting a woman have an abortion who will die because of heart problems if she has to wait? I'm not even counting what will happen to my elderly father if Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are gone.
 
 
-43 # brux 2012-08-21 12:44
>> shortly after the inauguration each new POTUS is taken to a building in DC by people who aren't officially on any payroll, to a room that doesn't exist on any floor plan. Once there they are informed of the "real" situation in the world, who "really" is the power in the world, and what will happen to the new POTUS and/or his family if he doesn't play the "game."

Really ... and how do you know this, or are you and ex-President or something? I think you have been watching too many movies.
 
 
+36 # Small Family Farmer 2012-08-21 13:05
Thanks for playing "how to leave off a key word when quoting someone." Had you started the quote with "My suspicion is that...." you could have saved us all from reading your meaningless reply that was simply a waste of bandwidth.

Clearly you are not much of student of history either. What I alluded to has been a common occurrence throughout history. Example: most, if not all, of the monarchies during the ascendency and domination of government by the Roman Catholic Church during the Middle Ages. Those old boys all got told what the real story was after their coronations.

Studying what happened to those who didn't play along with the Church makes for some interesting reading. There really is nothing new under the sun, our technology is what makes it all really a little more frightening. These sort of "behind the scenes" machinations have been going on for thousands of years.

But, yeah you're right, just me and my little tin foil hat talking.
 
 
+22 # Observer 47 2012-08-21 14:53
Well, then, Farmer, there are a LOT of us who are wearing the same hat. Just a little bit of research reveals that nothing in this world is what it seems to be. And you're 100% correct: the lessons are there in history for all who want to see them.
 
 
+26 # Majikman 2012-08-21 16:07
One more thing, SFF...John Perkins in "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man" lays out exactly how this gov't deals with recalcitrant foreign leaders: first the squeeze, then the threats, then the jackals move in for the kill.
The difference between JFK's time and the present is people like Assange who can ferret out the truth and spread it via the internet. That all-seeing eye the gov't is so fond of using against us citizens works both ways.
I would love to see 9-11 reopened.
 
 
+1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 20:40
I voted up to tin foil hat
 
 
+19 # Observer 47 2012-08-21 14:51
brux, suggest you read "The Secret Team," by L. Fletcher Prouty, formerly of the CIA; and "JFK and the Unspeakable," by James Douglass. These are but two of the many books that describe the reality of what happened in Dallas on 11/22/63, as well as the preceding events and the aftermath. Another good resource is Taylor Caldwell's bibliography at the end of "Captains and the Kings." If you truly don't think there are forces beyond governments that actually control world affairs, you're living in a world of blissful naivete.
 
 
+28 # Majikman 2012-08-21 12:57
My thoughts too, Small Family Farmer. Notice that all the horrible things that have come out of his admin. involve the military/CIA. He threatened to veto NDAA, then abruptly signed it...why?
I suspect the conversation went something like, "go piddle with domestic social issues and leave the rest to us. We'll tell you who to appoint for what"
 
 
+6 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2012-08-21 23:28
Many years ago, I watched then President Reagan give a short televised speech. As he concluded and was walking away from the podium, he made some remarks to certain people in close attendance. Some of the president's remarks apparently did not do well with members who were in close attendance. "Someone" who may have been responsible for the president's safety or responsible for what the President might say, did say, took him by the arm and said, "that's enough Mr. President."
Anyone on this board remember this event. I have spoken with several people over the years, but only a handful of people remember this incident.
 
 
+81 # Milarepa 2012-08-21 11:16
It should be known that Assange when in Sweden tried repeatedly to see Stockholm police and DA to give his side of the story. These authorities refused to see him. It's anybody's guess why not. Today Assange is made to look as if he is fleeing from
the Stockholm DA. The opposite is true, the Swedish authorities hid from him.
 
 
+99 # Dumbledorf 2012-08-21 11:18
Mr. Assange is a hero. He has done what no one else could or would do-- expose the war crimes and criminal actions of the U.S. and its lying leaders for all the world to see!
 
 
+72 # indian weaver 2012-08-21 11:51
Quoting from a Swedish friend's email who lives in Sweden: " ...the Swedish judicial system is treacherous, bound by no rules, chauvinistic and racist or ethnicist. Two women got together to frame Assange. Being Swedish they knew if they just went in to the police and let THEM handle it, a case would be built up. Sure enough a female prosecutor
took over and is gung-ho to put Assange in prison for a good long time. It's ridiculous. Imagine a case
in which a damaged condom in a plastic bag is the main piece of evidence! Nobody knows what happened
in those bedrooms - nor should they. Assange tried several times to see the prosecutors when he was in Sweden - no luck, they avoided him. Now the entire media is solidly against him, day after day. They're trying to sweep the entire first month of this thing under the rug. For example, one of the women had an article online where she gave advice to women how to frame their men/husbands. That was on the Web BEFORE the Assange accusations were made. Also, the first woman went to a crayfish party with
Assange the day after she was supposed to have been raped by him. Neverthless, if he's delivered to the Swedes he's in deep trouble. The Swedish prime minister, Carl Bildt, was on the board of directors of Rand Corporation, he is deep in Washington's pockets. A sneaky bastard whom you can't trust as far as you can throw him..."
 
 
+15 # Archie1954 2012-08-21 12:14
I think his soon to be ex wife agrees with you.
 
 
+25 # readerz 2012-08-21 12:25
Sweden probably wants to be a big player; they don't have property near the north pole, the new trade route for billionaire shippers. I note that Finland isn't included sometimes in this bunch, because Russia claims Finland's international waters: the U.S., Russia, Canada, Denmark (Greenland), and Norway: all near new shipping routes. The same billionaires who say they don't believe in global warming are making more billions off of it. But notice that Sweden, once more powerful than Norway, doesn't have a piece of this pie? It was the Rand corporation (or parent at Darpa, as stated in "A Beautiful Mind") whose idea it was to spray dark paint over the northern ice so that it would warm up to make new shipping lines; a project that supposedly was shelved back in the '50s. I wouldn't trust anybody from Rand.
 
 
-19 # brux 2012-08-21 12:34
at least realize this is complicated.

there is something fishy in these charges, but i do not believe in attacking the victim of these things. the fact is that assange did break the law or sweden.

from what i heard the women did not want to even press charges against him, but also did not want him to be able to continue his pattern without doing something.

lots of women are put in situations like this and it is not for you or me to decide it that is rape or not.

assange apparently has problems with women. you notice how no women spring up to say what a nice guy he is? no personal character references, not a one.

this should not be used as a an excuse for political harassment though, and it is complicated to separate the two.
 
 
+6 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 20:45
Sure the Media is against him, he took his freedom to expose War for what it is.
He didnot care who was doing the War Crimes he would have exposed all and should

If Journalists in Media of any type had the backbone to actually do their stories, told their knowledge, We would no be arguing about who to Vote for. We would have a real Candidate to Vote for.

Monkeys are all the News are. They do small stories but nothing to catch one's interest. No better than the dime store publications with headlines and no beef.
 
 
+8 # Dion Giles 2012-08-21 22:02
I agree with Indian Weaver, but a note of caution on one aspect: Carl Bildt is Sweden's Foreign Minister. He can't be totally in Washington's pocket - look what a Zionist writer in the Jerusalem Post thinks of him:

http://blogs.jpost.com/content/carl-bildt%E2%80%99s-belligerence

It looks as if the setting and springing of the Swedish honey trap has been the subject of complex tugs of war between Stockholm's closed doors, and it may not be fully played out even now. The better elements in Sweden may yet end up forcing a face-saving backdown.

Meanwhile, note that Australia House in London is within walking distance of the Ecuadorian Embassy - what does it say of the Australian Government that an Australian whistleblower has to seek the protection of Ecuador instead of Australia?
 
 
+30 # James Marcus 2012-08-21 12:43
This 'Get Assange' Charade, a frontal assault on Morality, Integrity, International Rule of Law and the U S Constitution .....simultaneo usly, is surely a 'sign of these times'. We suffer endless malfeasance, dishonesty, cover-up and 'termination' of Truth-Tellers. The name 'whistle blower' is somehow twisted around a ridiculous notion of 'Security', as though Truth was an egregious assault on safety.
It is , quite, the other way around.
Lies and cover-ups, obviously hiding depraved intentions and actions, are really the Elephant in the Living room threatening both our Way of Life and personal safety. Threats upon 'truth-telling' are a 'standard' tactic of Bullies, Mafioso-types, and Other (Government) Shamefuls who refuse to admit their own Dirty Laundry and will go to any length to see that others do not see, take note, or refute such M O.
And 'We, The People' stand by, like fools, sheep before the slaughter, whilst the brave amongst us are corralled and slaughtered by these thugs we dare to call 'Our Representatives '.
 
 
+29 # brux 2012-08-21 12:43
>> And Senator Dianne Feinstein, the California Democrat who leads the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, has demanded that he be prosecuted under the Espionage Act.

Feinstein is my representative, and this really makes me sad, especially since it makes no sense.
 
 
-13 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 20:53
I do not understand the Espionage. I can understand the hissy fit of being caught with our pants down but this is not new Military...this has been happening for a long time.
If Assange assaulted these Women then perhaps Ecquador would be the better place to have him tried in front of these women.

If he is into game playing, although not cool but instead a real need for help. It is not ours to judge. But to allow him to continue is not any better than killing women and children.

It is strange how we judge others for rape, killing but would allow Assange to get away with it because of his expose. Lil bit of Judge and Jury yourselves. See that is why the black and white always gets shaded grey...everyone has there opinion....
 
 
+24 # brux 2012-08-21 12:54
The real valid points here are:

1) Why do the Swedish authorities refuse to question Mr. Assange in London?

2) And why can neither government promise that Mr. Assange will not be extradited to the United States?

The arguments that Assange is a hero or doing good work should not matter in that it should allow him to be a sexual predator if he does not good humanitarians work to balance it ... that is not the point here.

Yes, it seems like there is an effort to get Assange.

Yes, it seems like Assange has some issues with his sexual relationships.

One point we do not know is how common these kinds of sexual complaints are of men who are powerful or in the public light. It can bring someone down or it can cause what are possible crimes to go away.

As someone who admittedly does not know, given the relative fuzziness of the situation and the political overtones, this should have been over and done with a long time ago and seems to be being carried along in order to intimidate or harass assange.
 
 
+73 # walt 2012-08-21 12:55
This is all truly amazing! And it is most amazing considering that the USA has NEVER commissioned a single investigation into the Iraq invasion, torture, secret prisons, etc. An entire presidential administration walks free and the people are denied any chance of knowing how they lost over 5000 of their soldiers and were plunged into massive debt by Bush-Cheney, yet we imprison Bradley Manning and apparently want Assange too!
 
 
+28 # wleming 2012-08-21 13:00
bush and co. lied the u.s. into war in iraq; obama continues to kill with impunity using drones; and now lets arrest and prosecute anyone, like assange, who whistle blows on the worlds self proclaimed "greatest country in the world." imperialism by any definition
 
 
+24 # jwb110 2012-08-21 13:31
Feinstein had best keep her mouth shut and remember the state she represents. CA. has a more circumspect attitude about these things based on our past history. She is going to get herself un-elected should she react without all the facts.
Anyone who cannot see this for what is is, a ramrod, might not be capable of being a Senator.
I hope that Assange, somewhere has a bigger document bomb and he drops to make the Brits and the Swedes and Washington back off.
 
 
+2 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 20:59
Given the need to know only information, Sen F should get the foot out of mouth until we know what we really need to try him for.

Freedom of Press allows him to put what he wants on Air. People take cell phone shots of people and put them everywhere and that is illegal. Unless we start arresting everyone Assange took information and showed us what We Allow Military to do.

Rape, I do not like anyone using Rape. If these women were Raped, they deserve their day in Court. If they were paid or pushed into convicting someone for Rape they are exactly what Republicans want to have happen so that Rape becomes legal. After all their kids probably get away with it and worse, the victims take the money That too has not changed.
Predators can size up people...everyo ne has a price to them
 
 
+11 # Peace Anonymous 2012-08-21 13:34
Peace Anonymous recognizes that we have very little control over the actions of others. The recipe for peace we offer suggests every single person on this planet is responsible for their actions and, in a democracy, the actions of their governments. This fact demands that we know the truth about the actions of our governments AND the corporations they do business with. We are only as sick as our secrets and peace lies in not blaming others, but in taking a long, hard look at where we went wrong.
 
 
+31 # Peace Anonymous 2012-08-21 13:39
The big question should not be about Assange. The big question should be WHY are all of these elected officials so afraid of the truth? Yhey say Assange's information puts people in harm's way. The people who make these claims are already responsible for the deaths of thousands. WHO is putting people in harm's way?
 
 
+19 # the wizard 2012-08-21 14:04
In the name of concealing Bush cartel war crimes the U.S. has stepped onto the slippery slope of manufactured crime.
 
 
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 21:00
Now making Rape Okay
 
 
+8 # Peace Anonymous 2012-08-22 09:41
Quoting the wizard:
In the name of concealing Bush cartel war crimes the U.S. has stepped onto the slippery slope of manufactured crime.

The problem is much older than that. Check out 1928 and the Cienga, Columbia banana massacre courtesy of United Fruit and the US government.
 
 
+7 # Human Right 2012-08-21 14:15
Washington DC is a fascist government whose financial sector is literally owned and operated by an international mafia not to mention big pharma and a few others. The Washington mafia has attacked many countries without provocation now turning the country into a military/police state with Obama signing the congress passed “National Security Authorization Act”. We no longer have our habeas corpus, illegal prisons are the norm, and torture by the USA is OK, and the Washington regime enables the ongoing holocaust against Palestinians in occupied Palestine. Assange is only one of many travesties of justice in this ongoing criminal gang land called Washington DC The USA is in serious trouble land it’s possible that it will take China and Russia to settle with Washington DC.
 
 
-1 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 21:01
Yeah just what we need role models in treatment of Human Beings teaching the USA lessons.
 
 
+14 # Buddha 2012-08-21 16:06
If the Federal government could prove that what was hacked and leaked actually did endanger national security, I'd be supporting them. But they haven't, not even close. Everything released had obviously been kept secret because it was EMBARRASING to the government. And that isn't stuff that should be kept secret, but what we NEED to have public, especially in a representative democracy where the government is "US". But we are heading towards autocracy, so nobody should really be surprised at our government's efforts to suppress transparency and freedom of the press.
 
 
+11 # Dion Giles 2012-08-21 22:20
Assange is not American. So far as I know he has never been to America. What allegiance or loyalty to America should he have? What obligation does a non-American not on American soil have to protect American national security (so called)? Should an American have to account to Iran for blowing a whistle on backroom Iranian dealings? American exceptionalism is bad enough when it oppresses American citizens (which it does) but to have the hide to seek to project its domestic laws all over the world is beyond ridiculous.
 
 
+15 # ghostperson 2012-08-21 16:48
I agree with Small Family Farmer. For at least two decades I have had this conspiracy theory rolling around in the noggin in which once a POTUS is inaugurated, someone pulls out a big book that reveals something awful that makes every one of them break every campaign promise.

I need somone to answer something for me. I am neither Dem or Repub. I don't dislike Obama but neither do I like him. He lost my positive opinion when brought in economic advisors from the very sector that took down our economy. Compared to Bush's serial blunders, I see nothing comparable. Obama's jobs, jobs, jobs initiatives have been stonewalled by the House, House, House. What is it that Obama has done that has earned him the seething emnity of the right? I don't need to hear about the crime of being Black while president. Obamacare did it? Extending healthcare using a Republican governor's model? I'm going to rip the tongue out of the next person that talks about his birth certificate. McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone. Romney's dad was born in a polygamist community in Mexico established by the grandfather who emigrated so that he could have multiple wives. I truly don't get it. I don't consider Obama a Democrat. He is what moderate Republicans used to be. So was Clinton. Is it just because Obama actually has room in his mind for something besides corporations? Wall St. has turned on him and let the fox in the hen house. Your thoughts please.
 
 
+6 # Small Family Farmer 2012-08-21 20:48
Like it or not, in case you haven't noticed....he's black.

That said, this country has never healed or removed the attitudes that resulted in the Civil War. Much of what is happening is the result of the underlying ugliness that has always existed in this country.

Sorry kids but the myth of American "exceptionalism " is just that, a myth. There are many remarkable things about this country but until we truly become what we claim to be, the hate, prejudice, narrow mindedness, and ignorance continues to diminish what we have the potential to become.

The blind and ferocious hatred the Right has towards Obama is just a symptom of our national malaise.
 
 
+14 # genierae 2012-08-21 16:57
Julian Assange was asked in an interview some time ago, if he thought that he would be extradited to the US. He said, "That's up to the American people." We need to keep calling the White House and make sure President Obama knows that if he brings Assange here for trial, we will NOT support his reelection. If he has no power to stop this madness, then he needs to make that known to the American people. We have a right to know that our country is being run by a secret government, called the CIA.
 
 
+13 # angelfish 2012-08-21 17:33
Bravo, Michael! NO ONE could have stated the case ANY better! I wonder if we'll EVER know the Truth behind it all?
 
 
+6 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 21:04
Not unless we start making better decisions. We must start taking our roles as Americans more seriously
 
 
+14 # beeyl 2012-08-21 18:43
Moore and Stone have painted a very clear picture of the free speech issues in this case, and how corrupt US, UK, and Swedish governments seem to be conspiring to try to bring Assange here to be silenced.

But does anyone else find it conspicuous and strange that these authors have omitted naming Obama as one of the chief moving forces behind these efforts? Does anyone think that W's name would have been omitted if it were his administration pushing for the extradition and trial and punishment of a journalist for doing his job extremely well?

As much as anyone, I love Michael Moore for the work he's done over the years exposing greed and bigotry and criminal irresponsibilit y by our most powerful politicians and businesspeople. But Obama's role in the persecution of WikiLeaks has been blatant and shameful, and election year or not, it's inexcusable for Moore and Stone to pull their punches as they've done here.
 
 
+4 # KittatinyHawk 2012-08-21 21:10
I believe they should make a movie about it and get it over with.

I do not appreciate them discussing the supposed rapes, like thy might not have been.

If Moore and Stone want some Changes maybe they should start in the USA with the Media, Congress, Republicans. With their money they can do investigations and start a dosier on all of Congress and Senate. Let see Moore and Stone do a Clean up on DC.
Assange took information like good Journalist of the Past, Woodwards etc and ran with it. It is too bad Journalists of TV and Papers did not stand up for his rights. Exposing what Wikki exposed is exactly what is missing in the World today.
Rape...Take him to Ecuador and try him...
If the Victims are truly Victims let them show their Bank Accts. But I believe there are two problems both evolve around the Truth. It is time we and Assange stops avoiding that.

Rape is a Crime. Exposing War Crimes is not. Hitler and his crimes were exposed now we condone Nazi behavior?
 
 
+7 # soularddave 2012-08-21 22:13
I suspect that WikiLeaks is not just Mr Assange, but rather, a group of people, loosely connected, who gather information they think the Public has the need (and right) to know. The Times and other newspapers delved into the info contained in "the leaks" and pulled out a few tasty morsels to investigate, print, and comment on. It seems as if they've been shut down.
Perhaps the rest of the info is not interesting like "that" video, , but in event that Assange does get brought to the US and imprisoned, I seem to remember a thinly veiled threat to release more damning evidence of official misdeeds on the part of a few governments.
 
 
+5 # beeyl 2012-08-22 03:04
If WikiLeaks wants its journalism to have the greatest impact, they're probably gearing up to release some important information over the next few weeks. We're still waiting to see some powerful evidence they promised they had of wrongdoing on the part of (at least) one of our largest banks. And if that Bank (of America?) corruption involves politicians, there would be no better time for our attention-defic it voters to hear about it than in the last two months before a presidential election.
 
 
-6 # Sensible1 2012-08-22 07:08
I do not believe there is any doubt that our President, regardless of who he is, is bound to protect the honor of the Republic no matter how wrong, illegal, or inhumane the crime, and forever hide the terrible evidences of past presidencies wrong doings no matter what the consequences may be. it is delusional to think otherwise. Just look at the record, and the factual knowledge that it has never before happened. Only people can make mistakes, but never the nation.
 
 
+10 # Small Family Farmer 2012-08-22 09:22
I suggest you read an account of the Japanese surrender. That nation did in fact accept responsibility for its action.

You really don't understand the concept behind a democratically elected representative republic do you? What you describe is that of an autocratic totalitarian regime. Of course that is what we're headed towards at an increasingly rapid rate.
 
 
-1 # barbaratodish 2012-08-22 22:12
If Julian Assange can get housing for free, at an "EMBASSY" suite, maybe I can try that if I am ever homeless (again).
 
 
+2 # independentmind 2012-08-24 10:38
The world needs people like Assange, because the whole system of news and communications has been hijacked by corporations. Without people like Assange there would be no other voice and no investigative journalism.
I like and support RSN, but these are interesting articles - not investigative journalism.
I see another group - Gawker has published some of the Romney offshore information. Much more of this is needed especially information on the backroom negotiations of the large corporations, of backroom negotiations between politicians and lobbyists.
It is about time that the hypocracy and lies are exposed. If those Diplomats and Officials had not said such boorish and stupid things and done things behind the backs of other countries, the publication of such documents would not have been a problem.
 
 
+1 # Shanti 2012-08-25 19:08
FREE PRESS! FREE PRESS MUST BE PROTECTED!
Shanti
 

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