I invite you to compare and contrast the cases of Julian Assange and Anne Sacoolas. I can guarantee you will have heard of Assange and been invited to form an opinion of him which is wholly warped by a tirade of misinformation and coordinated smears designed to dehumanise the individual and make you believe he is a ‘weirdo’ and an accused ‘rapist’.
Don’t let facts get in the way of such smears as all the allegations of rape have been thoroughly investigated by the Swedish authorities and consequently dropped but you wouldn’t know that unless you are paying attention to what amounts to the most heinous and dangerous persecution of a journalist by the most powerful forces on the planet.
Wrong Side of Justice
Anne Sacoolas on the other hand is an American citizen who drove a vehicle on the wrong side of the road near to an RAF Base in Northamptonshire on 27th August this year and collided with a motorcycle on the right side of the road. The young man riding the motorcycle was 19 years of age. He was knocked to the ground and writhed in pain and anguish. The driver of the motor car fled the scene. The young man was left in agony and fear. He subsequently died of his injuries. His name was Harry Dunn.
The parents of Harry Dunn are unable to properly grieve the tragic death of their son because they are being lied to and denied justice concerning the circumstances of his death. The woman driving the car is married to a US Government official of some sort. Originally the media and family were informed he was a US diplomat and as such his wife was allowed to leave the UK despite being the only suspect in the unlawful killing of a 19 year old man.
Indeed the family were denied the information that she had fled for several days as the local police were instructed by the British Foreign Office not to tell them. Only after vigorous and painful investigations were the family able to discover that the woman at the centre of the unlawful death of their son was allowed to leave the UK under the blanket of Diplomatic Immunity when in fact no such Diplomatic Immunity existed as the husband of the woman was not a US Diplomat at all. It is all a murky and stinking mess.
The family of Harry Dunn subsequently travelled to America seeking extradition of Anne Sacoolas to face charges of at least dangerous driving in connection with their son’s death. In an attempt to shut them up and silence the whole embarrassing story they were ushered into a hurriedly arranged meeting with Donald Trump who tried to get them to meet with Sacoolas without any legal representation. The mother and father bravely resisted that attempt and insisted Sacoolas be ordered to return to the UK to face proper investigation and probable charges. The US subterfuge backfired and Trump then made a stupid and pathetic statement implying everyone drives on the wrong side of the road in foreign countries and completely trivialised the tragic death with a “it happens” blurb. My contempt for him sunk even lower.
Right vs Wrong
What is clear is the US Government don’t want to do the right thing and extradite this woman back to the UK to face possible charges and the UK Government don’t want to upset their bosses in Washington as they have for many years done what they were told by successive US Presidents. It is a damned disgrace. The Queen is hosting Trump among other world leaders tonight. Harry’s family will be congregating outside Buckingham Palace. Through their legal representative they have communicated their intentions:
“Actions speak louder than words. We expect Mr Johnson to demand Anne Sacoolas’s return to the UK in his bilateral meeting with President Trump this week, to also call for that publicly, and then to meet with us to confirm that he has done so.
“Harry’s family, friends and supporters and people right around the country will not stand for it and we will be congregating outside Buckingham Palace in the early evening as the leaders arrive to make our feelings and presence known and to mingle with like-minded people who, like us, believe in right versus wrong”.
So while the family wait an inordinate amount of time to receive the Criminal Prosecution Report on the bringing of charges against Sacoolas in respect of their son’s unlawful death it is clear the US will resist the extradition of one of their citizens while the UK Government are acting like timid poodles in the face of a clear wrong committed against one of their citizens. A young man had his life snuffed out at the age of only 19. The only suspect at the centre of that death was allowed to flee the UK without criminal investigation on a false pretence. Now no one in Government will demand the woman his handed over to UK police. Pathetic.
Freedom and Democracy on Trial
Now think about Julian Assange. He hasn’t been accused of causing someone’s death. His only ‘crime’ is exposing the dirty deeds and unlawful actions of powerful governments and their security forces across the globe. Julian Assange formed WikilLeaks to facilitate the exposure of documents, videos, emails and other materials which expose war crimes, torture, mass murder and the conscious attempts of governments and officials to cover up those crimes against humanity. Julian Assange is not a criminal in any shape or form. He is a modern day hero who attempts to hold the powerful to account through the exposure of their misdeeds and criminality across the world. Assange is an enemy of lies, hypocrisy and war crimes not of ordinary human beings.
Assange now languishes in Britain’s Guantanamo Bay in the shape of Belmarsh Prison awaiting an unprecedented and pathetic extradition hearing to the US where he will face World War One charges under the archaic Espionage Act. A charge which carries a sentence of 175 years in prison if found guilty. In other words Assange faces a death sentence if he is extradited to the US yet the British Government is considering the US request.
For seven years Assange has been trying to avoid US persecution and the wrath of a rigged justice system enraged at his exposure of American wrong doing in Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantanamo Bay and all over the world. Abuses of power take place in darkness. The public are deliberately uninformed. Assange shone light on those abuses and now faces severe punishment for doing so. He is to face an extradition hearing in February next year which threatens the very existence of journalism. He is to face charges under the Espionage Act for publishing the truth. The truth about US war crimes, state assassinations, government lies to justify wars and the coordinated attempts to cover up these crimes. If Assange is a criminal for telling the truth then freedom and democracy itself is on trial.
Stand up for Truth
Julian Assange is very unlucky. If he was married to a US Government official he could have irresponsibly and recklessly killed another human being and been allowed to flee from being held responsible for the consequences of his actions and then been protected from justice. That is the reality of Anne Sacoolas and the injustice being committed against Harry Dunn’s family and the memory of their son. Julian Assange has had an entirely different experience to Anne Sacoolas. For daring to expose the dark and murky practices of the rich and powerful in Governments across the world, but particularly in the US, he has been effectively tortured according to the United Nations special rapporteur on torture and ill treatment, Nils Melzer:
“Wherever I delved into the case, I found a lot of dirty stuff,” … In 20 years of working with victims of war, violence and political persecution, Mr. Melzer added in his statement, he had “never seen a group of democratic states ganging up to deliberately isolate, demonize and abuse a single individual for such a long time and with so little regard for human dignity and the rule of law… the cumulative effects of Mr. Mr. Assange’s punishment can only be described as “psychological torture”.
As well as supporting the Harry Dunn campaign for justice I implore you to support the Julian Assange campaign for freedom and against extradition to the US. Assange believes in truth and accountability. If he is silenced we are all silenced. His persecution cannot be allowed to continue. We are all Julian Assange. Please resist the lies and bullying of the powerful and Defend Julian Assange. His belief in ‘The Right to Know’ is a virtue, not a crime. His words of wisdom and encouragement should inspire us all. He often says “courage is infectious” and:
“If wars can be started by lies, peace can be started by truth.”
Stand up for truth. Stand up for freedom. Free Julian Assange.