A BBC radio reporter in Stockholm this morning reporting on the Assange case said that Assange left the country not knowing there was an arrest warrant issued for him but managed to avoid bringing up the 5 weeks he waited in Sweden beyond his planned visit to be questioned, only leaving when the Swedes said he could.
The UKSC has the luxury of answering one simple question, whilst the world around swirls with complex issues. Leaving aside the possibility that the case against Assange seems to be politically motivated, that the Americans may want to extradite him, and that the women in question have never claimed that they didn't willingly have sex with Assange, there is still the exploitation of this situation by some powers that be.
Today at approximately 09:20AM the UK Supreme Court ruled against Julian Assange, upholding the European Arrest Warrant which orders his extradition to Sweden. Mr Assange's battle against extradition has so far spanned 540 days, 530 of which he spent electronically tagged under house arrest, the other 10 held in solitary confinement. He has not been charged with any crime and is being extradited solely for the purpose of questioning.
It is the first bilateral visit to Sweden by a US Secretary of State in a long time, Sweden's Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt writes, as he wishes a warm welcome to US Secretary Hillary Clinton who will arrive in the country just 4 days after Britain's Supreme Court announces its decision on whether Julian Assange is to be extradited to Sweden.
The announcement of Clinton's visit to Sweden, which will center around the subjects of "Internet freedom, green energy, Afghanistan and the Middle East", as well as other broad topics such as democracy and counter-terrorism, took place just 3 days after the Supreme Court published a date for Julian Assange's verdict to be issued. (The Supreme Court published the date of its judgment on May 23, Secretary Clinton's visit was announced on May 26.)
UPDATED WITH VIGIL INFO AND STATEMENT FROM CIARON O'REILLY:
Numbers are still growing for tonight's Brisbane #Rally4JA vigil from 4pm. Many thanks to Ciaron, Adele, Damien, Peter, Jimmy, Angela, Mark, Maggie, Carole, Razza, Kay, Cully, Martin, Phil, Janet and possibles Sean, AJ, Jim, Simon. Anyone else interested in joining contact Ciaron ciaronx AT yahoo dotcom or come along from 4pm outside DFAT corner Ann and Creek streets. There will be speakers and musicians from 5pm with the UK Supreme Court decision expected after 6pm AEST.
This Brisbane vigil joins in solidarity with the vigil in London outside the UK Supreme Court. It has been organised by former anti-war prisoner of the United States Ciaron O'Reilly, a Brisbane-born veteran protestor who has regularly assisted Julian Assange at court cases in the UK.
"We can never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was 'legal.'"
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
"Did you read Bonfire of the Vanities?" George asked me. I nodded, and he continued: "Do you remember that scene where he's getting out of the car, and there are all these people screaming his name, women throwing themselves at him? I mean, here's this guy who's in a terrible situation, but he's like a big celebrity."
Aussie publisher and Assange family acquaintance George Hirst had met me at the law school's cafe, so we could confer on ideas for helping the WikiLeaks leader. George and I both worried about Assange's potential extradition to the U.S., where harpy Hillary Clinton and other government vengefuls could use the EU's lax extradition laws to prosecute Assange, torture him, or worse. Now, months later, on the eve of the UK Supreme Court's final decision, we are all about to learn whether or not the embattled publisher will be extradited to Sweden, and then perhaps to the United States.
Foreword: On Sunday 27 May 2012, Swedish state media again attacked Julian Assange, this time in an attempt to link him to an unrelated ongoing murder investigation and to blame him for the difficulties Swedish authorities have had in their investigation.
This latest attack shows how thoroughly Swedish state media are biased against him and how public opinion has been poisoned against him, to the extent it's now inconceivable he can receive a fair trial.
We urge our readers to write to Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and bring this to his attention, to ask him to act to protect Julian from unfair extradition. A template letter is provided below - it's based on an earlier petition published by Justice for Assange.
Sunday 27 May 2012 Stockholm: Swedish state radio attempted early this morning to lay the blame for difficulties in the ongoing investigation of an unrelated Swedish murder case on Julian Assange.
Their article published online attempts to claim Assange is obstructing the course of justice by appealing his case before the UK Supreme Court and that killers pursued by Swedish authorities might go free as a result of a ruling in his favour.
On 30 May 2012 the UK Supreme Court will announce the ruling in the case regarding the extradition to Sweden of Julian Assange, after Assange has spent 540 days under house arrest without charge. Following a European Arrest Warrant issued in December 2010 on allegations of sexual misconduct, Assange submitted himself for arrest. Though Assange has not been charged, Swedish prosecutors have sought extradition from the UK for questioning.
On May 23, Julian Assange attended a screening of "Shadows of Liberty" wearing a kevlar Guy Fawkes mask.
Initially excoriated by mainstream media sources, Julian Assange's TV show, "The World Tomorrow," is now being hailed as the leading edge of a new era of "high quality alternative" broadcasting. The show's influence may become even more important, as two U.S. senators seek to overturn a longstanding ban on using the media for pro-government propaganda.
In the wake of Pfc. Bradley Manning's alleged part in Cablegate, the U.S. Army is still reeling from the blow it received from the biggest security breach in its history. Now, not only has the U.S. military drastically increased its monitoring of soldiers, but it's also working with the secretive DARPA agency -- combining new computer software with behavioral science techniques to try and predict when a "good" soldier will "go rogue."
On May 16th, a New York state federal judge granted a preliminary injunction to block provisions of the NDAA that allow indefinite detention, claiming they are unconstitutional. The decision is part of growing bipartisan opposition to the NDAA that includes prominent members of the US military.
U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest, originally appointed by Obama, clashed with the current administration by censuring the NDAA, saying that the act has a "chilling impact on First Amendment rights" to free speech, and infringes on the Fifth Amendment's right to due process.
On 16 May 2012 The Times published a piece claiming that information found in an embassy cable released by WikiLeaks directly led to the execution of Majid Jamli Fashi, an Iranian kickboxer. Within hours, media outlets around the world picked up the article and the story went viral.
Nothing could have been further from the truth.