When people are so stupid that they can't see the obvious, it makes me just want to give up. I can't believe the number of fools in this country. And that's coming from someone who can be a bigger fool than anyone and enters every room assuming to be the most stupid person present. Which is why if I can see something, I feel everybody should be able to.
I warned about Vincent Warren. I warned here, I warned offline. I had a huge argument with Michael Ratner over Vinnie. I said that the secret meeting with Barack Obama was a sign that Vincent was not to be trusted. I repeated that to Michael over and over. I told him repeatedly that he'd realize too late, when Vincent stabbed him in the back on Julian, that I was right about this. Shortly before he died, a conversation he had with Vincent revealed I was right. Michael and I made plans to discuss it when I was next in New York six weeks from our phone conversation but Michael ended up passing away before the six weeks period.
A major event took place Friday.
But check the website of the Center for Constitutional Rights or their Twitter feed in vain because they're not noting it. This was the biggest issue Michael was working on at the time of his death. And nothing. Not even on little Vinnie Warren's own Twitter feed.
Little Vinnie's not going to like what I'm saying here and that doesn't matter one damn bit to me. But what he really should worry about is what I'm saying to other CCR donors today and what I will continue to say to them over the weekend.
He better hope he can hustle that lazy ass come Monday to make it look like he and CCR were just momentarily distracted because I am -- and will be -- invoking Michael's cause to CCR donors -- people who know Michael and I were friends. Between that link and the fact that CCR issued a statement on Saturday -- not about Julian, still nothing about him -- will lend a lot of credence to my call on fake ass Vince Warren. Better work hard Monday, Vince, the people will be watching.
In case the title didn't clue you in, we're talking about journalist Julian Assange.
US President Joe Biden continues to persecute Julian for the 'crime' of journalism. Yesterday, the government of England formally agreed to go along with the persecution. Robert Stevens (WSWS) reports:
UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has approved the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to the United States. If extradited, he faces life imprisonment on charges under the Espionage Act for journalism exposing US war crimes, coup plots and human rights abuses and the complicity of the UK and other imperialist allies.
After over 11 and half years since he was first arrested in London in December 2010, kept in arbitrary detention and then imprisoned in London’s maximum security Belmarsh, the British government has dispensed with all legal norms and signed an order that could well result in Assange’s death.
A Home Office spokesperson said, “Under the Extradition Act 2003, the secretary of state must sign an extradition order if there are no grounds to prohibit the order being made.
“Extradition requests are only sent to the home secretary once a judge decides it can proceed after considering various aspects of the case.
“On 17 June, following consideration by both the magistrates court and high court, the extradition of Mr Julian Assange to the US was ordered. Mr Assange retains the normal 14-day right to appeal.
“In this case, the UK courts have not found that it would be oppressive, unjust or an abuse of process to extradite Mr Assange.”
Patel’s decision obliterates any notion of democracy and due process. WikiLeaks denounced the decision as a “dark day for Press freedom and for British democracy”. It announced it would appeal the decision to the UK High Court.
Binoy Kampmark (DISSIDENT VOICE) offers:
The only shock about the UK Home Secretary’s decision regarding Julian Assange was that it did not come sooner. In April, Chief Magistrate Senior District Judge Paul Goldspring expressed the view that he was “duty-bound” to send the case to Priti Patel to decide on whether to extradite the WikiLeaks founder to the United States to face 18 charges, 17 grafted from the US Espionage Act of 1917.
Patel, for her part, was never exercised by the more sordid details of the case. Her approach to matters of justice is one of premature adjudication: the guilty are everywhere, and only multiply. When it came to WikiLeaks, such fine points of law and fact as a shaky indictment based on fabricated evidence, meditations on assassination, and a genuine, diagnosed risk of self-harm, were piffling distractions. The US Department of Justice would not be denied.
“Under the Extradition Act 2003,” a nameless spokesman for the Home Office stated, “the Secretary of State must sign an extradition order if there are no grounds to prohibit the order being made. Extradition requests are only sent to the Home Secretary once a judge decides it can proceed after considering various aspects of the case.”
Evidently, overt politicisation, bad faith, and flimsy reassurances from the US Department of Justice on how Assange will be detained, do not constitute sufficient grounds. But the cue came from the courts themselves, which have done a fabulous job of covering the US justice system with tinsel in actually believing assurances that Assange would not be facing special administrative detention measures (SAMs) or permanent captivity in the ADX Florence supermax in Colorado.
This persecution is about silencing the press. Monday April 5, 2010, WIKILEAKS released US military video of a July 12, 2007 assault in Iraq. 12 people were killed in the assault including two Reuters journalists Namie Noor-Eldeen and Saeed Chmagh. That is when the persecution begins. It was an intimidation carried out by multiple presidents starting with Barack Obama, continuing with Donald Trump and now the baton for killing the press has been handed off to Joe Biden. This has had the effect of scaring off many traditional news outlets. They once partnered with Julian to report and now they act as though they've never heard of him. Saving their own asses? They may think that. If they do, they're dead wrong. An attack on Julian is an attack on all. And if the attack on Julian is not loudly and publicly rebuked, you can be sure that next up will be THE WASHINGTON POST or THE MIAMI HERALD or some other institution -- despite the US Constitution -- the same one that's being ignored in this attack on Julian.
Kevin Gosztola (SHADOWPROOF) explains that Patel and the Home Office made the decision that press freedom is "an act capable of 'far more serious damage' than traditional espionage." Here's Max Blumenthal:
Glenn Greenwald (SUBSTACK) notes, "An extremely unusual unanimity among press freedom and civil liberties groups was formed in early 2021 to urge the Biden administration to cease its prosecution of Assange, but Biden officials — despite spending the Trump years masquerading as press freedom advocates — ignored them (an interview conducted last week with Stella Assange by my husband, the Brazilian Congressman David Miranda, on Brazil's Press Freedom Day, regarding the latest developments and toll this has taken on the Assange family, can be seen here)." And Caitlin Johnstone (SUBSTACK) concludes:
Assange's fight against US extradition benefits us not just because the empire's war against truth harms our entire species and not just because he cannot receive a fair trial under the Espionage Act, but because his refusal to bow down and submit forces the empire to overextend itself into the light and show us all what it's really made of.
Washington, London and Canberra are colluding to imprison a journalist for telling the truth: the first with its active extradition attempts, the second with its loyal facilitation of those attempts, and the third with its silent complicity in allowing an Australian journalist to be locked up and persecuted for engaging in the practice of journalism. By refusing to lie down and forcing them to come after him, Assange has exposed some harsh realities of which the public has largely been kept unaware.
The fact that London and Canberra are complying so obsequiously with Washington's agendas, even while their own mainstream media outlets decry the extradition and even while all major human rights and press freedom watchdog groups in the western world say Assange must go free, shows that these are not separate sovereign nations but member states of a single globe-spanning empire centralized around the US government. Because Assange stood his ground and fought them, more attention is being brought to this reality.
Amnesty International has called out the move to extradite Julian:
Responding to the news that the UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has certified Julian Assange’s extradition to the United States to face charges under the Espionage Act, Agnes Callamard, Amnesty International Secretary General said:
“Allowing Julian Assange to be extradited to the US would put him at great risk and sends a chilling message to journalists the world over.”
“If the extradition proceeds, Amnesty International is extremely concerned that Assange faces a high risk of prolonged solitary confinement, which would violate the prohibition on torture or other ill treatment. Diplomatic assurances provided by the US that Assange will not be kept in solitary confinement cannot be taken on face value given previous history.”
“We call on the UK to refrain from extraditing Julian Assange, for the US to drop the charges, and for Assange to be freed.”
Julian Assange is likely to further appeal the extradition on separate grounds that it violates his right to freedom of expression.
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