We are in do or die times, says Caity Johnstone. The only question left is, “Should journalists be jailed for exposing U.S. war crimes? Yes or no?”
By Caitlin Johnstone
The propagandists have all gone dead silent on the WikiLeaks founder they previously were smearing with relentless viciousness, because they no longer have an argument. The facts are all in, and yes, it turns out the U.S. government is certainly and undeniably working to exploit legal loopholes to imprison a journalist for exposing its war crimes. That is happening, and there is no justifying it.
So the narrative managers, by and large, have gone silent.
Which is good. Because it gives us an opening to seize control of the narrative.
It’s time to go on the offensive with this.
Assange supporters have gotten so used to playing defense that it hasn’t fully occurred to us to go on a full-blown charge. I’ve been guilty of this as well; I’ll be letting myself get bogged down in some old, obsolete debate with someone about some obscure aspect of the Swedish case or something, not realizing that none of that matters anymore.
All the narrative manipulations that were used to get Assange to this point are impotent, irrelevant expenditures of energy compared to the fact that we now have undeniable evidence that the US government is working to set a precedent which will allow it to jail any journalist who exposes its misdeeds, and we can now force Assange’s smearers to confront this reality.
“Should journalists be jailed for exposing US war crimes? Yes or no?”
The Only Question Left
That’s the debate now. Not Russia. Not Sweden. Not whether he followed proper bail protocol or washed his dishes at the embassy. That’s old stuff. That’s obsolete. That’s playing defense.
Now we play offense: “Should journalists be jailed for exposing US war crimes? Yes or no?”
Demand an answer. Call attention to them and demand that they answer. Dig them out of their hidey holes and make them answer this. Drag them out into the light and make them answer this question in front of everyone. Because that is all this is about now.
Don’t get sidetracked. Don’t get tricked into debating defensively. Force the issue: the US government is trying to establish and normalize the practice of extraditing and imprisoning journalists for exposing its misdeeds. That is the issue to focus on.
You will find that anyone who dares to stick their head above the parapet and smear Assange now gets very, very squirmy if you pin them down and force them to address this issue. Because they cannot answer without admitting that they are wrong. And that they’ve been wrong this entire time. It’s a completely unassailable argument.
We now have two and a half months to prepare for the second half of Julian Assange’s extradition hearing: all of March, all of April, and half of May. We’re going to need all that time to seize control of the narrative and make it very, very clear to the world that a very important decision is about to be made by the powerful on our behalf, if we don’t make that decision for them.
It’s Do or Die
This really is do or die time, humans. If we allow them to extradite and imprison Julian Assange for practicing journalism, that’s it. It’s over. We might as well all stop caring what happens to the world and sit on our hands while the oligarchs drive us to ecological disaster, nuclear annihilation or authoritarian dystopia. It’s impossible to hold power accountable if you’re not even allowed to see what it’s doing.
If we, the many, don’t have the spine to stand up against the few and say “No, we get to find out facts about you bastards and use it to inform our worldview, you don’t get to criminalize that,” then we certainly won’t have the spine it will take to wrest control of this world away from the hands of sociopathic plutocrats and take our fate into our own hands. We are deciding, right now, what we are made of. And what we want to become.
This is it. This is the part of the movie where we collectively choose the red pill or the blue pill. We are collectively being asked a question here, and our answer to that question will determine the entire course we will take as a species.
So what’s it going to be, humanity?
Truth, or lies?
Light, or darkness?
A world where we can hold power to account with the light of truth, or a world where power decides what’s true for us?
A world with free speech and a free press, or a world where journalists are imprisoned whenever they expose the evils of the most powerful institutions on this planet?
A world where we all actively fight to free Assange and get the job done, or a giant, irreversible leap toward the end of humanity as we know it?
Do we free Assange?
Or do we sit complacent with our Netflix and our KFC and trust the authority figures to do what’s best?
Do we take the red pill?
Or do we take the blue one?
Choose your path, humans.
Caitlin Johnstone is a rogue journalist, poet, and utopia prepper who publishes regularly at Medium. Follow her work on Facebook, Twitter, or her website. She has a podcast and a book, “Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers.”
This article was re-published with permission.
The views expressed are solely those of the author and may or may not reflect those of Consortium News.
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They aren’t jailing him for exposing war crimes. He’s being jailed for something far worse. For allegedly interfering with the coronation of Queen Hillary, which is overthrowing our unelected government.
“He’s being jailed for something far worse. For allegedly interfering with the coronation of Queen Hillary, which is overthrowing our unelected government.”
The opponents are not particularly wise, particularly when being vindictive, and consequently they are not omniscient.
However they do attempt to fashion hopes/strategies/tactics/wishes to achieve certain purposes.
These purposes tend to lie within the frame of their overall purpose of maintaining a status quo in modulated form and “pour encourager les autres” to be complicit in this purpose.
Thank you Caitlin, you are an inspiration to us all.Please keep up your good work. The world needs more people like you!
I just realized that to me is seems that Julian has been (unjustly) imprisoned forever….which then made me wonder what it must feel
like to Julian himself!!
Although I agree fully with your current simplified push, I seriously question your assumption that we supporters are the “great majority” and that only a few powerful weasels need to be converted. It IS unfortunately the great silent majority that must be confronted with the simple question in a way that cannot be denied.
Your offensive would therefore also be far more effective on sites and platforms frequented by that majority.- Remember, all “NEWS” sources are just advertising and promotion agencies, and NONE will report anything that doesn’t suit them – However, you might get a simple inoffensive question past their algorithms.
Thank you Caitlin, I have also been completely disregarding any issues other than the simple question, “Did he ever publish anything that wasn’t true?”
Absolutely nothing to do with whether he is nice, cute, sexy, rude, hygienic, or an agreeable personality with the “correct” views.
Very true that the USG seeks to “normalize the practice of … imprisoning journalists for exposing its misdeeds.”
The decision of humanity is already that the USG is a corrupt oligarchy, not a democracy, and history will likely judge that it was irreparable by the late 19th century due to failure to protect its institutions from money power. But indeed we must press the battle, as it will determine our future, and still few are both aware of the truth and concerned for justice.
Julian Assange is being tortured openly by the UK. I wonder why his attorneys do not appeal to the European Court of Human Rights.
Thanks Caitlin for your inspiring piece.
I posted a letter to Julian today. He replied to a letter of mine last year with the words “Keep fighting, we can win this!”
This time I quoted his words back to him and said, “Don’t ever give up on your freedom, my friend!”
It’s really important to keep on fighting for Julian, and not to give up until he is a free man once again.
Thank you for writing to Julian and for letting us know is answer.
Last week’s hearing was a complete travesty. The judge and the prosecution apparently don’t even know what a trial is supposed to look like. They didn’t even seem to know the meanings of simple words, arguing that Assange was guilty of political crimes and that Assange was not accused of political crimes. Their knowledge of law was equally perplexing and Orwellian. They argued that Assange should be extradited under the treaty between the US and the UK and that the terms of the treaty didn’t apply. Both the prosecution and the judge resembled nothing so much as Humpty Dumpty in Alice in Wonderland.
Since the “judge” had already decided he was guilty and ignored all the evidence pointing out that the charges were all lies, it seems that the British “justice” system has been fully taken over by the present US maladministration.
Free Assange! Free Manning! I’d say it’s time to round up all of the oligarchs running this farce of a country and throw them all into Guantanamo…
Yes! Incarceration of Manning is the harshest application of a profoundly unfair combo of “grand jury” and “contempt” sentence. His fate shows that when it comes to “national security”, the concept of fair trial in USA is an empty shell. 18 months in prison plus ca.500 k fine for refusal to participate in a secret charade is vicious and sinister — the reign of fear.
Yes, the kleptocrats, mass media propagandists, and their opportunists have very deliberately subverted our Constitution and laws, acts tantamount to treason, and Guantanamo is truly the best they deserve.
Yes. This should not be happening to the brave few who dare show us a glimpse of the truth. We are so tired of the lies. It’s important that we keep flooding the WH with phone calls, letters, whatever we can. I know e-mails tend to be less effective. A lot of Trump voters care about this issue. I know they do. I’ve see quite a few say they’re done with Trump, if he refuses to help Assange. We need to speak out, regardless of party affiliation. We claim to care about justice in our society. Sadly, it’s clear that she lost her blindfold a long time ago. We must replace it. What’s the point of living in a world of lies? We are more aware now (than at any other time that I can remember) of how deep the lies go, and how corrupt the system is, and this is in large part due to the information we’ve gained from these real whistleblowers. My family was stationed at Fort Bragg from 2009-2015. There was no increased sense of fear or anxiety among anyone that I knew (even upon deployment) because of the leaks.
Thank you for your your continued coverage of this outlaw behavior of the outlaw empire.