One Month in Belmarsh: 29th Vigil for Julian Assange

Join us for a discussion online on the latest news about Julian Assange, who has now spent one month behind bars in London. 

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31 comments for “One Month in Belmarsh: 29th Vigil for Julian Assange

  1. John Wall
    May 12, 2019 at 10:45

    Getting a taste of his own medicine…traitors are not heroes

    • hetro
      May 12, 2019 at 12:33

      Here’s an argument against the “traitor” charge you assert here with no discussion. It’s somewhat long and similar to a high school lesson. I hope you and all those calling Assange a “traitor” will consider it.

      This argument is also based on an ideal system of democracy versus an authoritarian style which rejects criticism and seeks to distract and placate its citizens with brainwashing.

      It rejects the idea that “freedom” primarily means materialism and narcissistic self-pleasuring plus obedience to The State, and is closer to Camus’ idea that “freedom is a burden.”

      ~~

      First, it should be noted that “love of America” can be claimed by both sides of the conflict, not just those angry over release of classified materials.

      At an extreme of being angry one could defend any exposure of wrongdoing by officials of America, including by its military services, as service to America, and love of America no matter what.

      This is the meaning of “my country, right or wrong.”

      Either way “love of country” is a beautiful allegiance. Entirely opposed viewpoints can claim to love it, and to being patriots.

      But a problem exists if it is possible America’s government could fall into the wrong hands, or into the hands of those no longer loyal to essential ideals and principles in the nation’s backbone, as with its aspiration to belong to the people, in a democracy.

      Therefore, going further into the discussion, both sides of the conflict may claim a right to “love America” and to “defend it”—even with dire disagreement.

      It is also possible that a government representative may pretend to love America while engaged in betraying it. This notion, in fact, was (is?) a central suspicion relevant to the recent Trump collusion conspiracy idea.

      To reduce emotionalizing, discussion of what is best for America must be founded on facts and principles consistent with its Constitution and its ideals of a representative democracy.

      It should not be founded on distaste for personalities involved, on rumors, ad hominem attacks, on false narratives, and on false flags.

      Now, the case for requiring espionage laws must rest on the belief that a) it is wrong to disclose information damaging to a military’s capacity to defend the nation.

      Further, that defense must pertain b) to a just cause (as with national defense), and c) use methodologies consistent with that just cause, within the boundaries of what type of defense is allowed.

      It may not allow, for example, capturing an enemy village of civilians, the torturing of village children as an intimidation tactic to the elders of that village.

      Or for that same village, bayoneting all toddlers and infants as another way of intimidating the enemy, as was the method of troops under Henry V a few centuries ago.

      In terms of “rules of war” (if there are any) for a nation priding itself on decency, civility, and democracy, plus making efforts to be at peace with other countries, there may be certain conditions considered so abhorent (as above) that they belong only to the more savage and uncivilized world nations, such as those of our enemies.

      ~~

      In order to probe these foundations under “espionage” more thoroughly, an analogy may be helpful. No analogy is adequate, only approximate, and not a proof. But an analogy can help to elucidate underlying principles.

      Back to love of one’s country, the flag, and “America, right or wrong.”

      Suppose a person discovers that his/her mother has been engaging in suspect activity, in fact, increasingly clear as criminal activity.

      Of course the person’s love and loyalty to his/her mother is paramount and the first impulse is to reject, deny, disbelieve, protect.

      But if the mother’s behavior becomes ever more clear as a threat to law, to neighbors, to one’s children, to one’s self, to surrounding communities, the question now becomes what to do.

      To continue to wrap one’s arms around mother, or the flag, while denying any possibility of wrongdoing, while that wrongdoing is in plain sight, is to avoid making any response whatever.

      The harm meanwhile may continue or worsen, while one looks the other way, or pretends not to notice.

      The dilemma is exceedingly harmful and traumatic. Turn in one’s mother? It seems, a priori, not possible to do this.

      This analogy I believe is parallel to what lies behind “America right or wrong.”

      But it also lies behind Chelsea-Bradley Manning’s action that led to disclosing various classified information to wikileaks and Julian Assange.

      Information on what was disclosed is available. Note that what has been disclosed does not bear on why the entry into the Iraq War in the first place, its justifications, and its pretenses.

      Instead the first significant leak bears on conduct of the war in the face of justifications for the invasion of Iraq, which we now know were based on false information, and which possibly had been used to mislead the public.

      Conclusion:

      In contrast to seeing the actions of Manning and Assange as “espionage” or “treason,” it can be argued they are actions of loyalty and patriotism, an idealism in the highest degree.

      It can further be argued that for each citizen of a supposed representative democracy, there is one duty which must be observed, and which should be actively taught to children.

      That is, continually evaluating and promoting government officials in terms of those who uphold the country’s integrity and honor.

      Each citizen in a representative democracy has a right to know—particularly in terms of information that assists evaluating government policies, programs, and justifications for its actions.

      If we as citizens forego the duty of keeping an eye on those who purport to rule over us, we are allowing the possibility for rogue elements to enter governance and take it over.

      And if that could happen, these rogue elements are likely to play on and advance citizen ignorance, particularly those who have stopped paying attention because the task is too boring or tedious or interfering with a shopping trip.

      A citizen watch-dog acuity is what we need to foster, not destroy, so that we might not be taken over by a predatory group with enormous brainwashing power.

      • Shannon Lee Gilmour
        May 21, 2019 at 06:10

        Eloquent and articulate. Transparency allows us to see through the fog of delusion.
        Belief in the foundations of US democracy is a mixed bag, however. Love of country makes us blind to its inherent problems. Taboo against speaking up keep people in control and allow the admin to manipulate perceptions. WW2 was started because it was taboo to speak against country when the German were at war. being in the system it is difficult to step back and see the system’s structure. If you want to realize how the two party system is inherently corrupt, watch “cities on speed: bogota”. This is the story of Antanas Mockus and how he rose to power without a party affiliation. He was able to make change because he did not owe allegiance to a party that got him elected.
        I believe Assange and Manning are helping clear the fog, just a little bit. Yet when they clear the fog, it is not love of country they are hoping we realize.

    • hetro
      May 12, 2019 at 14:51

      The Manning-Assange collaboration was not a betrayal (as with “traitor”); it was an act of duty to conscience, to an interpretation of wrongdoing on the part of the US Government, and to a duty to reveal it.

      Manning and Assange have a right, every much as anyone else, to be considered loyal to convictions of right/wrong, indeed as “heroes,” not “traitors.”

      A major question is: to what authority should one’s allegiance be given?

      Take the “collateral murder video.” Should that information be kept hidden/”classified”/ignored/brushed under the carpet?

      If there is wrongful conspiracy to wage a collusion accusation and campaign against an elected leader, should that be kept quiet?

      If YES this particular authority would seem to prescribe blind obedience to an authoritarian state governed by a select group, and no matter what it does should be ignored/obeyed.

      If NO there is another authority, sometimes called a “higher authority,” which is determined by values of what is right/decent/civilized/prescribed by international law.

      This higher authority is founded in principles–not in loyalty to human beings subject to corruption and lust for power.

      Assange and Manning have responded to this higher authority.

      Let’s argue further—unless all you want to do is name-calling.

      • hetro
        May 12, 2019 at 14:52

        CN editors please delete this comment and what it’s connected to–I assumed you didn’t want the longer response.

        Thanks.

  2. Robert Mayer
    May 12, 2019 at 09:18

    2:06: Tulsi… msm blackout Already! “T’other Joe” gettin it all ?… & @ 2:12 “Our Joe” sez DNC media pals already pullin Bernie on Tulsi… (as xposed by the late Ed)… Agreed!! Tnx CN 4 Truthtellin’! &Tnx Elizabeth4 outin’ Intercept2 (w/ Kuriaku quote)!!! Discussion Quite Informative (2:40-:50) props George2…
    GREAT STUFF! But How effin’ SCARY 4 U$ CITS

  3. Robert Mayer
    May 12, 2019 at 07:29

    Hey Joe @ around 58:00 mention of CNN… didn’t Sanders etal altar a tape to appear the White House correspondent assaulted a govt page? How can That msm outlet give “yer fired” adm a break?

  4. john wilson
    May 12, 2019 at 04:47

    The legal position with regards to the length of time Julian Assange stays in prison, is that, he is eligible to be released after he has served 6 months. He would however, be on some kind of licence and might have to wear an electronic tag. If this is the case for him, then he will be out in 5 months in early Autumn. Let’s hope so.

  5. PJB
    May 12, 2019 at 00:13

    I read an article from a website I was unfamiliar with that alleged that Julian had been forced to take a psychotropic drug (‘BZ’) that is known to have been used at Guantanamo Bay. Haven’t seen the same report in any reputable alternative media and not in any ‘mainstream media/propaganda’ – though the latter I wouldn’t expect much truth from anymore. Does anyone know if there is veracity to such a story?

    • Lolin
      May 12, 2019 at 09:38

      I also read about the psychotropic drugs based on my readings for the past 10 years A lot of it or CIA strategy and methodology from former officials in the US government I’d like to know I could see them giving him psychotropic drugs because he’s very agitated, those who are his overseers.
      last evening I saw a YouTube report called counterintelligence a lot of until officials were interviewed there was some video and so based on that and as I mentioned 10 years worth of we are mildly researching the CIA and their methodology I would say that certainly is possible. In his case they want to get into his head or destroy his memory because he has a tremendous amount of information he has been mistreated dehumanized and no one has been able to really help him including his lawyers.
      To YouTube heading is counterintelligence IV.
      It is fourth in the series.

    • Em Sos
      May 12, 2019 at 10:53

      Please see the interview link below:
      There is no mention of Assange’s behavior being in any way “crazed” as if he were on a psychotropic substance.
      These two people know Assange intimately, and personally, and for them not to have mentioned anything on the subject IS convincing; unless of course they too were threatened not to divulge the truth; or that the interview itself was doctored.
      This is doubtful, however, especially in the case of the Wikileaks editor.
      Does the fact, that after their most recent face-to-face visit with Assange – post psychotropic assertions, by ‘someone’ in media, convince you of anything other than you already know?
      Does it allay anyone’s fears about what is to come for all of humanity if Assange, the mortal hero, comes to harm?
      Yet, one can go on indefinitely, rationalizing in the dark.
      And that is where we, the public, are being kept, by the forces of darkness.
      This why they operate clandestinely – with the barbaric savagery they inflict upon the person – doing whatever they are doing to Julian Assange.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAYCq4QeAeM

    • O Society
      May 12, 2019 at 18:21
      • Em Sos
        May 13, 2019 at 18:15

        Who the hell is Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatowski? A Milton Friedman disciple? An aficionado of the likes of George Soros?
        An aspiring anarcho-capitalist!!!
        Now that is seriously funny! I may be a moron, but definitely not an ox.
        “All ‘public services’ are criminal and should be abolished and privatized… also the courts.” (Dictionary definition)
        I guess with this, their latest display of treachery against the general welfare of society, they believe they’ve arrived!
        The lives of the champions of humanity – such as Julian Assange – rather than the individual greed mongers of ‘free market mechanisms’ philosophies, is now expendable, because the law (power) of these few individuals, who own it all, rules supreme over morality and true justice.

  6. May 11, 2019 at 19:55

    CALLING INDEPENDENT AND SMALL PARTY CANDIDATES TO STAND UP FOR JULIAN ASSANGE
    https://candobetter.net/taxonomy/term/5305

    The following letter is to be sent to every independent candidate standing in the Federal Parliamentary election. A similar letter is to be sent to the candidates standing for the smaller parties, It is my hope that raising the profile of Julian Assange, now, may result in the election, on 18 May, of a Federal Parliament with at least a few members who are prepared to act to try to protect Julian Assange from those in the United States whose criminal conduct he helped expose to the world. One party, which is standing candidates this election and which has campaigned in support of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning is the Socialist Equity Party. … Let’s hope that we will soon learn of other candidates who will also stand up for Julian Assange.

    Dear Sir/Madam,

    Firstly, thank you for standing as a candidate in the forthcoming election of 18 May.

    I write to ask if you will use the election campaign to speak up for Julian Assange, an unjustly imprisoned Australian journalist, who faces extradition from Britain to the United States. Through the Wikileaks news service, established in 2006, Julian revealed to the world war-crimes that United States’ rulers wanted to remain concealed. One of the most infamous of those incidents was the 12 July 2007 “Collateral murder” in Iraq by the US crew of an Apache helicopter.

    Will you also stand up for Julian Assange?

    It is my hope that, by raising the issue of Julian Assange to independents and small party candidates now, I might help make it possible to have a parliament elected on 18 May that will act to get Julian Assange back to Australia safely.

    Yours sincerely,

    James Sinnamon

  7. Sally Mitcheell
    May 11, 2019 at 19:49

    We must mass and unite for the welfare of Julian Assange and return him home to his family. He is a remarkable man with a remarkable mind who is being mentally and physically tortured because of his decent and humanitarian approach to journalism. Australia loves you and hope you come home soon

  8. Katherine
    May 11, 2019 at 19:44

    Freedom for Julian Assange! Julian has done more than any other journalist on spreading truth! We need freedom of speech upheld, “especially “ when its “truth”. Truth may not always be pretty but so much easier to deal with then all the scattered lies. Thank you Julian my prayers are with and for you. I have written the President at the WH will continue to beg for your freedom.

  9. hetro
    May 11, 2019 at 13:30

    At approximately 1:18 in the discussion, re Joe Lauria’s call for a comment from anyone watching:

    Under discussion at this point:

    –that media when adversarial (as with Assange) is turned into the villain’s role. So that All the President’s Men (from the 1970’s) today would be seen as somehow disloyal or “against America.”

    Continuing: the 1960’s are now demonized as though what happened in those days was very terrible, whereas that “tumult” at that point was indeed positive, exciting, and a time of questioning The System, including The Vietnam War.

    If the 60’s are being demonized at this time that is another example of how Orwell’s predictions are taking hold in this society.

    I think we need to try to balance such negative sentiments due to brainwashing and the current state of “mainstream news” as it scrubs dutifully for The State . . .

    –VERSUS clear indications MASSIVE sections of the American public are fed up with the outrage The System has become.

    And this I submit is why we are seeing the emphasis on brainwashing increase, at the same time the flagrant nature of this brainwashing becomes more grotesque.

    Power might be somewhat nervous.

    Whereas in the 60’s we had Cronkite and Sevareid, with Edward R. Murrow still in memory, today we have numerous alternative sites such as CN to offer challenge to mainstream brainwashing.

    This is encouraging, as indeed with open and critical discussions such as this one being broadcast.

    The essential facts of a case and the essential issues need continual clarifying—as you and other sources are doing, and I hope will continue doing.

    For example:

    Assange did not do “espionage.” This is State BS. It is intimidation.

    He was doing journalism.

    He cooperated with Manning to release important information which can enable a citizen to evaluate his/her government.

    This is called a citizen’s right to know.

    This right to know and evaluating is an obligation in a System that supposedly values “democracy.”

    A democracy means The System is supposed to serve the citizenry, not special interest groups.

    It is not enough to yawn and say pass me my soda and let others run the government I’m too busy right now with my pastimes to be bothered.

    Citizens who want to remain actively informed, intelligent, and engaged MUST use their brains to evaluate the information and make decisions.

    • Bob Van Noy
      May 12, 2019 at 08:41

      hetro good response. I especially appreciate you picking up on the conversation so that it might be discussed further on this other platform making it multimedia.

      It’s incredibly important to understand that back in the sixties our government was Actively operating Against what would become largely unacceptable positions with regard to foreign policy. But (most importantly) it was a hostile and illegal government from November, 1963 forward. Understanding this is crucial for realizing that from that point on, the government was Working actively Against Democracy so that now we are faced with something akin to total fiction. Yes, the contemporary media is a non-participant in the truth but it has had fifty years to mature into near complete distraction. We’re left with this small but important glimmer of hope here at CN… I know you know this, but I thought it necessary to make a point. Thank you.

      • hetro
        May 12, 2019 at 12:20

        Bob, right on: “now we are faced with something akin to total fiction.”

        To what extent is this total fiction received and promoted by Americans in general? Are we still basing our understanding of a governing system in classic idealistic terms generated from the outset of this country (i.e. re “democracy”), or on “America means freedom to what you want, eat a lot, stay safe from other countries due to our isolation and our military–and all this means you should shut up and be grateful for this personal self-indulgence and materialism”?

  10. Em Sos
    May 11, 2019 at 12:57

    “We are responding… ” whereas Julian Assange (J.A.) says “there must be absolute unity and determination, in the response.” The “unity in the oppression” that he is referring to has gone on for generations now. It is not a new phenomenon in human history, which suddenly popped up with the arrest of J.A.
    What is new in an ‘advanced’ world of 2019 is the reversion to the unscrupulously callous behavior of the-powers-that-be toward ‘humanity’.
    The question is: How is our responding this time going to be more effective in saving this one individuals life than it has been on all prior occasions, where protest has been ineffective in achieving rescue against those who hold unilateral power; so-called democratic processes notwithstanding.
    The law, quite apparently, is what ‘they’ determine it to be.
    In the West, are we not too ‘civilized’ even, to forcefully stand up to the oppressive powers we are facing as society, as has been evidenced time and again; whether it be in situations where one persons life hangs in the balance, or whether it be the lives of entire populations.
    What does radical opposition to tyranny even mean nowadays, when basic humane standards of unity are non-existent?

  11. hetro
    May 11, 2019 at 11:59

    It is unpleasant but I suggest the commentators clarify the “rape” charges against Assange. The term is highly loaded and dubious. Please clarify.

  12. hetro
    May 11, 2019 at 11:48

    Writing to Julian Assange

    Mr Julian Assange
    DOB: 3/07/1971
    HMP Belmarsh
    Western Way
    London SE28 0EB
    UK

  13. James
    May 11, 2019 at 09:46

    He deserves to be there

    • hetro
      May 11, 2019 at 11:50

      Make your case. Based on what?

    • Lily
      May 12, 2019 at 16:29

      James, please, why do you say that?

      When i think of Julien Assange my heart aches – the way it did when i first learned in school about the German Konzentration Camps. I think of him everyday first thing in the morning and at night wishing him well.
      May the resistance grow everywhere and rise above the lies of so many. My hope is with the British High Court. May human right prevail.
      May Julien Assange soon be free!

      Thank you CN for your vigil.

  14. Stephen Morrell
    May 11, 2019 at 08:27

    It really needs to be understood that the corporate media have no serious intention of speaking truth to power, ever again if possible and would prefer if they have a legal excuse not to. They’re now convinced they can make their profits from stories that don’t matter, from being faithful stenographers to power, and especially from spinning outright lies with a lurid or conspiratorial twist that keeps the public wanting more. Russiagate was the template.

    Infotainment is their current business model. They don’t care a toss if Assange is convicted, NYT general counsel to the contrary. The fourth estate is defunct and they know it. The online fifth, its replacement, should know it too.

  15. Richard
    May 11, 2019 at 05:46

    http://www.writejulian.com to show your support!

    • Lily
      May 12, 2019 at 16:38

      Thank you for the adress. I will spread it and write. Imagine tons of letters arriving at Belmarsh Prison!

  16. Stephen Morrell
    May 11, 2019 at 03:19

    That the corporate media isn’t defending Assange isn’t a bug. It’s the feature. They’re not there to provide information, and now they’re dropping even that pretence. The press will not go back to its old role of putting more effort into pretending to be a source of information once Trump is gone. Their authority among those 40 years and younger and thinking people in general is completely destroyed.

    It’s time to stop wringing hands about the demise of the fourth estate in its not holding power properly to account. It’s time to concentrate on protecting, reinforcing and expanding the online ‘fifth estate’ because the fifth estate has held the other four to account to an unprecedented extent, and needs to do this more. The fifth estate is the future, and this side of a revolution is a vitally important medium to defy the assaults by the ruling class on free speech and transmission of information.

    In short, more online news outlets need bullet-proof, NSA-proof, Wikileaks-type submission processes and protocols to protect sources. The now dubious and unsafe Intercept is exactly not that model.

  17. John G. Kenney
    May 11, 2019 at 02:23

    We’re living in bleak times. The silence here from the supposed stalwarts of the pseudo “#Resistance” speaks volumes.

    • richard
      May 11, 2019 at 05:47

      Most are too busy watching football or baseball. :( But if you’ve got time, writejulian.com!

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