[A-List] Fwd: [R-G] Curiosities Abound in Assange Case

Suzanne de Kuyper suzannedk at gmail.com
Sun Dec 19 12:30:46 MST 2010

Since it was the Brits that requested he stay in Jail, not Sweden, one goes
back to Tony Blair's Britain that caters to all U.S. propaganda needs.
They are still just as powerful.   Remember, Ben Bernake prints U.S. dollars
at whim and will.  He oversaw the gifting of 13 TRILLION dollars of taxpayer
money to the biggest banks in the world, in secret.....Why would he not help
buy U.K. 'co-operation' with Assange propaganda?    Suzanne

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Romi Elnagar <bluesapphire48 at yahoo.com>
Date: Sun, Dec 19, 2010 at 8:00 PM
Subject: [R-G] Curiosities Abound in Assange Case
To: Suzanne de Kuyper <suzannedk at gmail.com>

 Curiosities Abound in Assange Case

                 Dennis Bernstein

                 December 18,   2010
Editor’s  Note: WikiLeaks founder
Julian Assange was released on bail in London on  Thursday, after nine
days in the bowels of a Victorian-era prison awaiting  possible
extradition to Sweden over charges of sexual misconduct. But Assange
also faces a threatened indictment in the United States for “conspiracy”
 in disseminating  leaked U.S. government documents.
       After the  hearing, Assange
 told supporters outside the High Court that "I will  continue my work
and continue to protest my innocence" regarding the accusations  from
two women in Sweden. On Thursday, Dennis Bernstein of Pacifica’s
“Flashpoints”  program spoke with filmmaker and author John Pilger, who
was present in the  courtroom:
       DB: Let me get your overview here of Julian Assange and what  is
happening to him. How do you see this?

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       JP: Well,  it’s a very complicated
and very suspicious case, of course. Today [Thursday[  we saw a pinch of
 justice, that’s all. But his bail is weighted down with
conditions. He’s virtually under a kind of house arrest. Now if he
wasn’t Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, none of this would have
 happened. I doubt whether there would be any prosecution, we’d be
having  this conversation.
                 And  we learned today
[Thursday] that the Swedes had not initiated this appeal  against bail
that was heard today in the London court. It was the British. Why  were
they doing it? Were they doing it on behalf of the U.S.? I don’t  know
the answer to those questions. But suspicions really do mount in this
                 Because  the unspoken in
the court … was the possible prospect of Julian Assange being
extradited to the U.S. to be prosecuted under a law, which at this point
 doesn’t exist, which the Attorney General in the U.S. is at the moment
 is  trying to invent. ‘Cause there isn’t such a law against
whistleblowers,  certainly not against those who facilitate
whistleblowing as WikiLeaks  does. But that is speculation.
                 But  then there’s the
Swedish case which is very strange indeed. I’m not saying  that it is
being run by the CIA or anything like that but it’s got very strange
and dark elements and very contradictory elements to it. So more of this
 is  going to emerge when the expedition issues are heard. I think the
next  hearing is in January but it will probably run through for a
couple of  months.
                 DB: In  the United
States, everybody has everything on the table now, not for Iran, but
for Julian Assange. Arrest him, prosecute him, lock him down,
assassinate  him. Could you talk about this?
                 JP:   Well, I mean, you
know there’s always been this tension in the U.S. hasn’t  there? Between
 all that rosy history of Georgian gentlemen handing down tablets  of
good intentions and the other side, a bunch of lunatics. I’m not saying
 these people writing those columns are lunatics but they’re on the
fringe of  that fringe. So they’ve always been there, and so we expect
to hear from  them at times like this.
       But  I think what’s more worrying
is that the, as I mentioned, the Attorney General  in the Obama
administration is making all these boorish noises about he’s going  to
prosecute him. For what? For what? This is supposed to be the land  of
the First Amendment. And I dug out a statement by Obama just before he
came to power about how he wanted it to be the most informed period in
modern  U.S. history and all that nonsense. I think that’s the worry.
                 The  truth is the Obama
administration is worse than the Bush administration certainly  in this
area. You know Bush didn’t actually prosecute a single
whistle-blower. He  made a lot of noises. Obama is breaking all records
in Justice Department  prosecuting whistle-blowers. So there is clearly a
 motivation there to try  and get Assange.
                 DB:  I suspect that the
idea, in part, is to keep the focus on Assange and off the  information
-- some of which helps to fill in some pretty big holes. Speaking  about
 some of the documents, it was rather interesting and significant that
we  saw the administration and the Congress in the U.S. playing a key
role in  trying to prevent the former Vice President of the U.S.,
Cheney, et al, from  being indicted by a Spanish court, indeed trying to
 suppress the court from  indicting members of the Bush administration
for torture and related adventures. That  kind of material is
interesting and it seems to put the fire under Obama and  official
Washington to go after WikiLeaks.
                 JP: Yeah,  because it
might lead to them. They know that they’ve all got secrets, and  they
want to keep their secrets from us, and they are all implicated, to some
 degree. And they are worried. A lot of these people are worried about
 what’s going to come out, all over the world.
                 Truth,  they are worried
about the truth getting out. That’s why there’s such  intense feeling
about, as you say, distracting from all this by pursuing  Assange but
also trying to shut him up. They won’t, of course, because  WikiLeaks is
 all over the world. It won’t shut him up one bit. In fact, I think  it
will have the opposite effect.
                 It  is interesting as the
 Swedish case came up WikiLeaks released a whole lot of  documents in
Sweden that showed the nefarious relationships between the  government
and the media and the U.S. and so on. So it’s an interesting struggle.
                 DB:  Official documents
are for journalists, often more effective than eyewitness
accounts. Because sometimes what people see through their senses is
deeply  affected by everything and the chemistry of the moment. But when
 you see  the cold rule on the page you can work with it and you can
make a very strong  case.
                 JP: Yeah,  that’s
absolutely right. There is nothing like evidence in their own
words.That doesn’t mean to say we have to believe everything they’ve
written  down, of course not. But it gives us a very good idea of the
thinking of  those in power in their own words. That’s the most
revealing of all.
                 DB:  Well what are your
concerns now? What do you see as some of the  pitfalls? Some people are
already active in this country, one, in creating  all kinds of devices
to shut down Internet sources like WikiLeaks and their  secondary
support services. And we’ve also seen moves to say that this is  why we
can’t have this kind of Internet.
                 JP: Well,  they’re not
going to succeed. They won’t shut it down. And WikiLeaks has  shown that
 there are so many mirrored sites, WikiLeaks sites, all over the  place.
 You know, they keep duplicating themselves. It’s not possible.
                 They  can throw the
amassed ranks of Mastercard and Visa and Paypal and all the rest  of at
them. And the Pentagon can try its best to conduct a kind of
cyber-warfare against them but it won’t work. They won’t succeed. So
it’s very interesting.
                 DB: Do  you think that
those people, those journalistic institutions given access now  have
done a good job?  Do you think maybe it’s time to have a consortium  of
independent thinkers/journalists going through this stuff in a
methodical  way. How do you perceive the best way to deal with this
amount of  information?
                 JP: Well,  I think that
is happening. WikiLeaks itself is very good at analyzing and
interpreting the material. If you look at their site it is very clear in
 the way it interprets and kind of navigates through the documents. And
 then you also have, well, particularly the Guardian has done a
skillful job in  putting out the documents. So you know I think it is
out there. I  think it is there. You get the New York Times completely
runs to the White  House to “please sir, can we….”
                 DB: To  get permission…
                 JP: Yeah.  So I
wouldn’t…what I have seen of the New York Times’ slant on them I
wouldn’t  really take the time to read it the way they do it. But I have
 been  reading them in the Guardian and it’s pretty straight. So yeah, I
 don’t  think people have any difficulty reading these documents
actually. I’ve  seen plenty of them and once you unscramble the acronyms
 and the codes and all  that, they are pretty easy.
                 DB:  Well, final question
 and I have to say, I don’t really quite get it or accept  the fact as
has been suggested that the overwhelming amount of these documents  came
 from one private in the military. Maybe they did. But what do you
think about that story and the potential that it could have been a
private  somewhere in the U.S. military that could reveal this amount of
                 JP: Well,  I mean, it’s
surprised [me] to read that for the certain diplomatic cables they  were
 available to 2.5 million people. They had clearance to have access to
them. So who should be surprised that they were leaked? It’s amazing
they  weren’t leaked before.
                 I  can only speculate,
the technology for all this is beyond me. But it does  seem farfetched
to think that … suggesting Bradley Manning would have done  it. He seems
 to have leaked, or may well have leaked the Apache footage  and some of
 the other material. I don’t know. I don’t know.
       But when  I spoke to Julian Assange
 about this he was clear and spoke about people who he  compared with
the conscientious objectors in the First World War so he was  talking in
 the plural. So I think, the suggestion is there’s more than one  and
perhaps many more than one.
                 DB:   Did you talk to him today [Thursday]?  Do we know how
he was treated?
        JP:   Well, he was in solitary, so
 he was isolated basically. He looked ok in  court, he looked fine. It’s
 an unpleasant experience.
                 DB:  And just to
underline where we started, you are saying, it is your  understanding
now that the reason he stayed in jail was not the Swedes pressing  the
case but it was the Brits.
                 JP:   It appears that’s
the case. Yes, he was given bail on Tuesday, and within two  hours there
 was an appeal against that bail. Everyone assumed that the  Swedes
appealed and it emerged this morning that it wasn’t the Swedes. In  fact
 the Swedes say “We don’t have a view on bail.” It was the British
prosecution service who have tried to explain it away by saying “Well,
it’s in  this country, it’s up to us.” It wasn’t very convincing at all.
 So the  question is “What’s going on?”
       Dennis Bernstein  produced
this interview for "Flashpoints" on the Pacifica network,  which was
broadcast across the US on Thursday, Dec. 16, from the KPFA studio in
Berkeley, California. You can access the audio archive of that entire
show on  their Web site, www.flashpoints.net.
       From the  Web site you can
also sign up to the Flashpoints mailing list. Please  follow Flashpoints
 on Facebook and/or Twitter at twitter.com/FlashpointsNews.  Additionally,
you can get in touch with Bernstein at  dbernstein at igc.org.


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