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October 24 2019

mr-absentia

Assange in Court - Craig Murray

«I was badly shocked by just how much weight my friend has lost, by the speed his hair has receded and by the appearance of premature and vastly accelerated ageing. He has a pronounced limp I have never seen before. Since his arrest he has lost over 15 kg in weight.

But his physical appearance was not as shocking as his mental deterioration. When asked to give his name and date of birth, he struggled visibly over several seconds to recall both. I will come to the important content of his statement at the end of proceedings in due course, but his difficulty in making it was very evident; it was a real struggle for him to articulate the words and focus his train of thought.

Until yesterday I had always been quietly sceptical of those who claimed that Julian’s treatment amounted to torture – even of Nils Melzer, the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture – and sceptical of those who suggested he may be subject to debilitating drug treatments. But having attended the trials in Uzbekistan of several victims of extreme torture, and having worked with survivors from Sierra Leone and elsewhere, I can tell you that yesterday changed my mind entirely and Julian exhibited exactly the symptoms of a torture victim brought blinking into the light, particularly in terms of disorientation, confusion, and the real struggle to assert free will through the fog of learned helplessness.

I had been even more sceptical of those who claimed, as a senior member of his legal team did to me on Sunday night, that they were worried that Julian might not live to the end of the extradition process. I now find myself not only believing it, but haunted by the thought. Everybody in that court yesterday saw that one of the greatest journalists and most important dissidents of our times is being tortured to death by the state, before our eyes. To see my friend, the most articulate man, the fastest thinker, I have ever known, reduced to that shambling and incoherent wreck, was unbearable. Yet the agents of the state, particularly the callous magistrate Vanessa Baraitser, were not just prepared but eager to be a part of this bloodsport. She actually told him that if he were incapable of following proceedings, then his lawyers could explain what had happened to him later. The question of why a man who, by the very charges against him, was acknowledged to be highly intelligent and competent, had been reduced by the state to somebody incapable of following court proceedings, gave her not a millisecond of concern.»

«For the prosecution, James Lewis QC stated that the government strongly opposed any delay being given for the defence to prepare, and strongly opposed any separate consideration of the question of whether the charge was a political offence excluded by the extradition treaty. Baraitser took her cue from Lewis and stated categorically that the date for the extradition hearing, 25 February, could not be changed. She was open to changes in dates for submission of evidence and responses before this, and called a ten minute recess for the prosecution and defence to agree these steps.

What happened next was very instructive. There were five representatives of the US government present (initially three, and two more arrived in the course of the hearing), seated at desks behind the lawyers in court. The prosecution lawyers immediately went into huddle with the US representatives, then went outside the courtroom with them, to decide how to respond on the dates.

After the recess the defence team stated they could not, in their professional opinion, adequately prepare if the hearing date were kept to February, but within Baraitser’s instruction to do so they nevertheless outlined a proposed timetable on delivery of evidence. In responding to this, Lewis’ junior counsel scurried to the back of the court to consult the Americans again while Lewis actually told the judge he was “taking instructions from those behind”. It is important to note that as he said this, it was not the UK Attorney-General’s office who were being consulted but the US Embassy. Lewis received his American instructions and agreed that the defence might have two months to prepare their evidence (they had said they needed an absolute minimum of three) but the February hearing date may not be moved. Baraitser gave a ruling agreeing everything Lewis had said.

At this stage it was unclear why we were sitting through this farce. The US government was dictating its instructions to Lewis, who was relaying those instructions to Baraitser, who was ruling them as her legal decision. The charade might as well have been cut and the US government simply sat on the bench to control the whole process. Nobody could sit there and believe they were in any part of a genuine legal process or that Baraitser was giving a moment’s consideration to the arguments of the defence. Her facial expressions on the few occasions she looked at the defence ranged from contempt through boredom to sarcasm. When she looked at Lewis she was attentive, open and warm.»

«Finally, Baraitser turned to Julian and ordered him to stand, and asked him if he had understood the proceedings. He replied in the negative, said that he could not think, and gave every appearance of disorientation. Then he seemed to find an inner strength, drew himself up a little, and said:

“I do not understand how this process is equitable. This superpower had 10 years to prepare for this case and I can’t even access my writings. It is very difficult, where I am, to do anything. These people have unlimited resources.”

The effort then seemed to become too much, his voice dropped and he became increasingly confused and incoherent. He spoke of whistleblowers and publishers being labeled enemies of the people, then spoke about his children’s DNA being stolen and of being spied on in his meetings with his psychologist. I am not suggesting at all that Julian was wrong about these points, but he could not properly frame nor articulate them. He was plainly not himself, very ill and it was just horribly painful to watch. Baraitser showed neither sympathy nor the least concern. She tartly observed that if he could not understand what had happened, his lawyers could explain it to him, and she swept out of court.»

October 12 2019

mr-absentia

@SomersetBean: Today: Julian Assange has been in a London prison for 6 months, after UK police seized him from Ecuador's embassy. A journalist & publisher facing a US kangaroo court & 175 year prison sentence—for exposing the truth.

mr-absentia

@SaveManning: It's DAY 213 of @xychelsea's incarceration for resisting a grand jury subpoena with $104,000 in fines. ($1000 A DAY) (October 12 2019) Chelsea's legal defense fund is here: tinyurl.com/chelsealegal

September 28 2019

mr-absentia

Breaking The Media Blackout on the Imprisonment of Julian Assange

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«It is important to ask ourselves what Julian Assange’s real crime is. In an era, dubbed the Information Age, where the strategy of the powerful appears to be to know as much as possible about the rest of us while ensuring that we know as little as possible about them and how they operate, Assange worked to prevent that imbalance from becoming a rout, and stuck like a bone in the throat of the mighty.

A double chorus of voices across the mainstream media spectrum cheered the destruction of the First Amendment. The New York Times applauded Trump, claiming he’d “done well” to charge Assange with an “indisputable crime.” CNN demanded that Assange finally “face justice,” while others claimed the day in court of the “narcissistic” “internet troll” who attacked America with his “vile spite” was “long overdue.”

All around the world, Assange’s treatment seems to have given the green light to governments to intimidate and hassle journalists. Australian police, for instance, recently conducted a raid on journalist Annika Smethurst’s home. Smethurst had not long before that revealed that the government had been secretly requesting permission to spy on its own citizens. Meanwhile, independent media everywhere are being marginalized by the crackdown on internet freedom.

In a clear sign to the world, Assange held up Gore Vidal’s book The History of the National Security State to the cameras while being dragged from the Ecuadorian Embassy. The book warns of an increasingly powerful and unaccountable authoritarian government taking over the country. Part of that is silencing dissent and limiting or destroying the freedoms centuries of struggle have won us.

If Assange is successfully prosecuted it will send a message to the world that the era of freedom to speak and publish is well and truly over. He will not be the last to be persecuted. The more a power oppresses and takes away rights, the more it needs to oppress and take away rights, until the last vestiges of opposition are destroyed or driven far underground. We cannot expect corporate media to stand up to the corporate state. We have to do it ourselves, or any citizen of the world can be next. Will you heed this warning?»

Reposted bypressanybeton pressanybeton

September 27 2019

mr-absentia
Money vs Integrity. When governments all choose to look the other way, it is up to the people to monitor and penalize the government officials who fail to speak up against these severe violations of human rights.
— @hoccgoomusic’s comment on NYT report China Wants the World to Stay Silent on Muslim Camps. It’s Succeeding.

September 22 2019

mr-absentia

September 21 2019

mr-absentia
Reposted byin-god-we-trustthauturienswissfondue-interimPewPowFeindfeuerDevatchortv3bsoschaafplepleKryptonitecleanschlachtorosJoschIsAGeekOverseerSkretusogibmetafnord

September 16 2019

mr-absentia
Reposted byin-god-we-trustswissfondue-interimPewPowplepletimmoe

August 27 2019

mr-absentia
8266 cee9 500

diese 3 herren überfielen 9 länder in nur 20 jahren und sind für den tod von über 11 millionen menschen verantwortlich. trotzdem nennt sie niemand TERRORISTEN.

mehr muss man über diese merkwürdige welt nicht wissen.

May 18 2018

mr-absentia

sudaneseculture: Please let us help our sister Noura Hussein. Noura is a 19 year old girl, in Sudan. One of many whom are a victimsnof marital rape. Unlike most, Noura has defended herself. Noura was forced to marry a man, who raped her, having his relatives hold her down and at his second attempt she managed to defend herself and stab him. He died, she went to her family who disowned her and handed her to the police. She was found guilty of premeditated murder which is punishable by death in Sudan. On the 10th of May 2018 the court sentence Noura death by hanging. Her legal team now have 15 days to appeal the sentence. Let us help our Sudanese/ African sister. & Please sign the petition.

May 17 2018

mr-absentia

October 12 2017

mr-absentia

so he defended Israel’s vicious war crimes…

1371_a478

June 20 2017

mr-absentia
7229_9707_500
  • thedailybeast.com: Is Japan’s Top Politician Behind a Shameful Rape Cover-Up?

    “Japan’s ruling coalition, headed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, has been mired in scandal for several weeks amid allegations Abe personally bent the law or broke it to benefit his political cronies and friends. Even a senior member of Abe’s own Liberal Democratic Party says, ‘There is nothing this administration wouldn’t do to crush its enemies and reward its pals.’

    But new allegations have raised the possibility that the administration may have gone so far as to quash a rape investigation on behalf of a close friend of Abe: the dapper, hipster-bearded broadcast journalist Noriyuki Yamaguchi, who also penned two laudatory books on the prime minister.

    The story became national news on May 29 when a 28-year-old journalist named Shiori held a press conference at the Tokyo District Court as she sought to reopen the closed investigation into her case. In accordance with the wishes of her relatives, she has kept her family name out of the papers.

    In a country where fewer than 10 percent of rape victims ever file a report, it is rare for victims to speak out and even rarer for them to show their faces.”

  • japansubculture.com: Shiori’s Full Statement On Her Ordeal

    “Two years ago, I was raped. Going through the subsequent procedures, I came to the painful realization that the legal and social systems in Japan work against victims of sex crimes. I felt strongly about needing to change this adverse structure, and decided to go public with my case.

    I will go into details later, but in the beginning, the police would not even let me file a report on this case. They told me that it was difficult to investigate sex crimes under the current law. Also, the person in question, Mr. Yamaguchi, was the Washington Bureau Chief of Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) at the time, and a public figure. During the investigation, I received insults that were unbearable as a victim.

    However, my intention is not to criticize the entire police force. The Takanawa Police eventually became sympathetic to my situation and worked hard to investigate this case. Thanks to their efforts, investigations were completed and an arrest warrant was issued. But just as the warrant was about to be executed, the then-Chief Detective ordered investigators to call off the arrest. I question the existence of a police organization that allows such unforgiveable circumstances to transpire.

    I also question the procedures that sex crime victims are required to undergo at hospitals in order to receive treatment and examinations, as well as the insensitivity of organizations that provide information for victims. A fundamental change needs to be made to this structure.”

    “I want to ask a question to all people living in Japan. Are we really going to continue to let this happen?

    For the past two years, I often wondered why I was still alive. The act of rape killed me from the inside. Rape is murder of the soul. Only my body was left, and I was overwhelmed by the feeling that I had become a shell.

    After the incident, I concentrated on seeking the truth as a journalist. I had no other choice. I felt like I would be mentally crushed if I considered myself a victim. Focusing on work was a way for me to protect myself.

    I then came across a photo documentary of rape victims and their families by Mary F. Calvert in a World Press Photo exhibit. In the exhibit, there was a diary of a woman who had been raped. In this diary, there was a drawing of wrist cutting, accompanied by a message that said, ‘If only it was this easy.’ In the end, this woman killed herself.

    I understand this woman’s pain. She doesn’t exist in this world anymore, but I witnessed those photos and received her message. And this is what I thought: ‘I have to reveal the horror of rape and the enormous impact it has on the victim’s life.’

    Becoming a rape victim myself made me realized just how small our voices are, and how difficult it is to have our voices heard in society. At the same time, I recognized the need to face this issue as a journalist. If I hadn’t been a journalist, I may have given up. I know there are countless women who have gone through the same experience, leaving them hurt and crushed. I know that, both in the past and still today, many of these women have given up.”

Reposted byRekrut-Kmolotovcupcakejapanicaschaaf
mr-absentia

June 14 2015

mr-absentia

“Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go 10,000 miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on Brown people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights? No I’m not going 10,000 miles from home to help murder and burn another poor nation simply to continue the domination of white slave masters over darker people in the world. This is the day when such evils must come to an end. I have been warned that to take such a stand would cost me millions of dollars. But I have said it once and I will say it again. The real enemy of my people is here. I will not disgrace my religion, my people or myself by becoming a tool to enslave those who are fighting for their own justice, freedom and equality. If I thought the war was going to bring freedom and equality to 22 million of my people they wouldn’t have to draft me, I’d join tomorrow. I have nothing to lose by standing up for my beliefs. So I’ll go to jail, so what? We’ve been in jail for 400 years.”

— Muhammad Ali, 1967 (via Ⓐnarcho Queer)

Reposted byin-god-we-trustverschwoerer

May 13 2015

mr-absentia

US: jail sentence on Jeffrey Sterling

  • 'Guilty of Embarrassing Government': CIA Whistleblower Gets 42-Month Sentence (Common Dreams, May 11 2015)

    “Following the announcement on Monday, advocates held that even the lesser sentence revealed the inequalities of the U.S. justice system with dangerous implications for government accountability. Further, the conviction marks the longest sentence delivered to a convicted leaker in a civilian court during Obama's tenure.

    ‘Sterling is the latest casualty in the administration’s war on national security whistleblowers,’ said attorney Jesselyn Radack, who serves as the national security and human rights director for the Government Accountability Project. ‘Like the other whistleblowers prosecuted under the Espionage Act, Sterling is guilty of embarrassing the government. This case lays bare the government’s rank hypocrisy in the prosecution of leaks. If you’re loyal to the truth rather than the national security establishment you’ll be bludgeoned.’

    In an emailed statement from the Alexandria courthouse, Norman Solomon, coordinator of whistleblower advocacy organization ExposeFacts.org and executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy, told Common Dreams: ‘The only fair trial would have been no trial at all. The only fair sentence would have been no sentence at all. Whistleblowing is a public service, and the government's continuing efforts to criminalize that public service is a double-barreled assault on both journalism and the democracy that it vitally seeks to nurture.’

    Prior to revealing his concerns about the covert CIA operation, Sterling, a black man, had filed a discrimination lawsuit against the agency. Supporters say he was unfairly targeted because of those claims.

    ExposeFacts.org has compiled a history of information about Sterling's trial.”

  • CIA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling Gets 42 Month Jail Sentence (teleSUR English, May 12 2015)

    “The 42 month sentence was a far cry from the federal sentencing guidelines that called for a minimum 19 year prison term.

    Yet the outcome was also harsher than that imposed on former CIA director David Petraeus in April. Petraeus was slapped with two years probation for leaking classified information to his biographer.

    While the defense argued Sterling's sentence should be similar to that faced by Petraeus, U.S. district judge Leonie Brinkema stated Sterling should face a higher penalty for failing to plead guilty.

    However, during sentencing Brinkema conceded the federal guidelines ‘are too high.’

    Despite falling short of the guidelines, the sentence remains one of the highest penalties meted out under the Obama administration's spree of prosecutions targeting intelligence leakers under the Espionage Act of 1917. Since President Barack Obama took office, the Act has been used seven times to prosecute leakers – more than all previous administrations combined.

    The administration has argued it is not specifically targeting whistleblowers, but critics have accused the government of trying to suppress embarrassing leaks. ”

  • In First Interview, CIA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling Says Congressional Staffer Urged Him to Flee (Firedoglake, May 12 2015)

    “Sterling, who worked as an African American case officer, was found guilty by a jury of committing multiple Espionage Act offenses when he exposed information about ‘Operation Merlin,’ which involved passing flawed nuclear blueprints to Iran in order to get the country to work on building a nuclear weapon that would never function.

    He left the CIA in 2002 and brought a claim against the CIA alleging racial discrimination. He appealed his case all the way to the Supreme Court in 2005. However, the government successfully had the case thrown out by invoking the “state secrets” privilege. The government has maintained that he leaked details about Operation Merlin in revenge for his discrimination lawsuit being dismissed.

    Sterling was sentenced to three and a half years in prison on May 11. It is the longest sentence issued by a federal court during President Barack Obama’s administration.

    Expose Facts, an advocacy organization that has mobilized support for Sterling, conducted an interview with Sterling, which aired on ‘Democracy Now!’.

    Sterling recalls receiving information that there was a ‘possible leak of information’ and ‘everyone’ was ‘pointing a finger’ at him. He needed to find some help.

    He went to a local congressman, Clay, and one of his staff members looked at him and told him he should ‘just leave the country.’ That hurt Sterling because the staff member was a black man working for a black representative and they were telling him not to stand up for his civil rights.

    ‘You don’t run away. You stand up for yourself,’ Sterling declares. ”

February 04 2015

mr-absentia
CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou was released today after being sentenced to 30 months in prison on 25 January 2013.
— from @wikileaks (Feb. 3 2015)
Reposted byin-god-we-trust in-god-we-trust

January 26 2015

Good news! The US government decided today that because I did such a good job investigating the cyber-industrial complex, they’re now going to send me to investigate the prison-industrial complex.

-Journalist and activist Barrett Brown in his public statement 

The news: In Texas yesterday, Brown was sentenced to 63 months in prison and more than $890,000 in restitution for his proximity to sources in the hacker group Anonymous and for linking to leaked Stratfor documents. Often called the “spokesman” for Anonymous against his wishes, Brown has been detained since his arrest in 2012, and since then has taken a plea deal to reduce his sentence from the decades of charges the prosecution was seeking. Journalists and activists alike agree this is just part of the slippery slope as classified government documents are leaked by hackers and journalists do their job investigating said leaks. As Kevin Gallagher (from the Free Barrett Brown Campaign) told The Guardian, “Any journalist that uses hackers as sources is extremely chilled by this.”

Like the tenacious dissident he is, Brown is now publishing a column from prison

From the rest of Brown’s statement

For the next 35 months, I’ll be provided with free food, clothes, and housing as I seek to expose wrongdoing by Bureau of Prisons officials and staff and otherwise report on news and culture in the world’s greatest prison system. I want to thank the Department of Justice for having put so much time and energy into advocating on my behalf; rather than holding a grudge against me for the two years of work I put into in bringing attention to a DOJ-linked campaign to harass and discredit journalists like Glenn Greenwald, the agency instead labored tirelessly to ensure that I received this very prestigious assignment. — Wish me luck!”

(via futurejournalismproject)

Reposted frombwana bwana viawonko wonko

January 23 2015

mr-absentia
If the machine of government is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then I say, break the law.
— Henry David Thoreau (via Ⓐnarcho Queer)
Tags: Law Injustice
Reposted bywonkostraycat

December 01 2014

mr-absentia
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