Julian Assange arrested in London

Discussion in 'Politics' started by jammy, Dec 7, 2010.

  1. jammy


    I'm impressed how many countries have united to go after this guy and make his life hell: Australia is looking into whether he has broken any laws there, France won't let him get server space there, Sweden cooked up a phony sex-crime charge, even Switzerland is dubious about letting him base there. The self-censorship of American companies is disturbing, they are preemptively complying with a government order that possibly hasn't come yet. If anything this leak is showing that freedom of speech needs to be protected from corporations as much as governments, seeing as the latter hasn't actually done anything yet other than condemn it.

    Either way, this piece of news shows that Assange certainly is very high up in the most wanted scalp list. If we trust Wikileaks, and why wouldn't we, the amount of money on that Swiss bank account was very small - compared to all illicit funds hidden by for example African or Arab dictators in Switzerland.

    His behavior is anything but "anti-American". The reason he's doing what he's doing is because of his philosophy regarding regulation and the free sharing of information to keep despotism and corruption in check. Taken at face value, that's actually quite pro-American.

    I guess a lot of governments have realized these leaks are really powerful stuff potentially and that there could be more where this came from ---- against other governments.

    Julian Assange arrested in London
    7 December 2010 Last updated at 13:08 GMT

    The founder of the whistle-blowing website Wikileaks, Julian Assange, has been arrested by police in London.

    The 39-year-old Australian, who was the subject of a European arrest warrant, denies allegations he sexually assaulted two women in Sweden.

    Mr Assange is due to appear at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court later.

    A Wikileaks spokesman said Mr Assange's arrest was an attack on media freedom but it would not stop the release of more secret files.

    Kristinn Hrafnsson told Reuters on Tuesday: "Wikileaks is operational. We are continuing on the same track as laid out before.

    "Any development with regards to Julian Assange will not change the plans we have with regards to the releases today and in the coming days."

    Secret locations

    He said Wikileaks was being operated by a group in London and other secret locations.

    Scotland Yard said Mr Assange was arrested by appointment at a London police station at 0930 GMT.
    Continue reading the main story
    Clive Coleman BBC News

    Following his arrest, Mr Assange will be brought before a court as soon as possible. That may be on Tuesday afternoon. If the court is satisfied the arrest warrant is valid, a date will be set for a full hearing, which is not likely to take place for some weeks.

    Mr Assange will be able to raise his arguments against extradition at this stage.

    The 'fast-track' European arrest warrant system is based on the concept that all the participating countries have legal systems which meet similar standards, and fully respect human rights. In other words, it is assumed that a person will get an equally fair trial in any of these countries.

    If the accusation from the requesting state is valid, the grounds for opposing extradition are very limited.

    Mr Assange is accused by the Swedish authorities of one count of rape, one of unlawful coercion and two counts of sexual molestation, alleged to have been committed in August 2010.

    If the district judge rules the arrest warrant is legally correct, he could be extradited to Sweden.

    But the process could take months.

    Police contacted his lawyer, Mark Stephens, on Monday night after receiving a European arrest warrant from the Swedish authorities.

    An earlier warrant, issued last month, had not been filled in correctly.

    Mr Stephens said his client was keen to learn more about the allegations and anxious to clear his name.

    The Web activist's British lawyer, Mark Stephens, told the BBC this weekend that he was worried the attempt to extradite Assange to Sweden could be a precursor to moving him to the U.S.

    "It doesn't escape my attention that Sweden was one of those lickspittle states which used its resources and its facilities for rendition flights" by the U.S. to transport terrorism suspects around the world for interrogation, he said.
  2. He's probably safer in jail
  3. Ricter


    Over 500 mirrors and growing.
  4. 377OHMS


    Hopefully somewhere along the line here he'll be run over by a double-decker or catch a freak line drive in the temple at the local cricket match.

    Its a dangerous world. :D
  5. jammy


    Apparently, the US government is now warning universities to tell students not to link to Wikileaks, download it or read it if they want to work on government contracts or apply for federal government jobs. They may face a polygraph later on it they are being warned.
  6. jammy


    The new Reformation: how Julian Assange broke the world and why no one can put it back together

    By Ferdinand Bardamu
    7 December 2010

    Yesterday, I linked to a post by Advocatus Diaboli in which he discusses WHY the emergence of an organization like Wikileaks is so important:

    We never had anything comparable to WikiLeaks in recorded history. Imagine a decentralized, inexpensive, easy to setup/update/maintain system which can disseminate leaked digital information to anybody who has the curiosity to find out. While there have been whistleblower websites and blogs for years, they were largely individual efforts with a very ephemeral existence and limited readership.

    He’s right. The emergence of Wikileaks and similar entities is a complete game-changer. Let me illustrate why with a historical comparison.

    [​IMG]For over a thousand years, from the fall of the Roman Empire in the west to the Protestant Reformation, the Catholic Church was the most powerful entity in Europe. Then, in the span of a hundred years, they lost almost everything. Half of Europe converted to Protestantism, breaking the political and economic grip that popes possessed over them. The Church’s land holdings were gradually eaten away until today, where the Catholic Church’s temporal power extends to an area the size of Central Park guarded by a bunch of Swiss mercenaries who gallivant about in Renaissance-era clothing wielding pikes. How could an organization that held so much power for so long collapse so swiftly?

    While it is true that by the time of the Renaissance, the Church was a sclerotic, ineffective, corrupt empire that existed only to enrich itself and screw over the peons, that’s only one half of the answer. The other half is that technology had advanced to the point where critics of Catholic policies could not only cheaply and efficiently spread their ideas, the Church’s ability to suppress those ideas was greatly diminished. The technology in question? The printing press.

    [​IMG]Think about it. The time cost of writing and producing books prior to the invention of the printing press kept them out of the hands but a few, the educated clergy and nobility. With the printing press, books, pamphlets and other writings could be cheaply and easily mass-produced. Less than a hundred years after Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press, Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of Wittenberg Church. It was this combination of information-spreading technology and the Catholic Church’s own record of behaving in bad faith towards its subjects that enabled Luther and his Reformation successors to crush the Church in such a short amount of time.

    Not a week ago I wrote on why re-instituting the Fairness Doctrine in the U.S. would have no effect on political discourse because the ease of distributing information on the Internet makes radio and TV increasingly irrelevant. The exact same ease of information dissemination that makes it possible for me to write this blog also enables websites like Wikileaks to exist. If the Internet is our printing press, Julian Assange is our Martin Luther, in terms of impact on the world.

    Like Luther, Assange is capitalizing on both a technology that enables him to spread ideas and info quickly and cheaply and a massive disillusionment with modern society. One or the other is not sufficient for instigating social change, but the two combined are a deadly brew that can wreak serious havoc. And once the engine of revolution starts going, it perpetuates itself, no longer needing the person who gassed it up. The people who are calling for Julian Assange to be incarcerated or assassinated are the equivalent of the radicals who wanted the Catholic Church to arrest and execute Martin Luther for “heresy.”

    [​IMG]No matter what action the U.S. government takes against Assange, they can’t stop him or the movement he’s created. If they ignore him, he’ll keep on publishing leaks, embarrassing them even further. If they up their internal security, they’ll hinder their own operations, playing right into his hands. If they imprison Assange, he’ll become a living symbol of oppression and tyranny, the Nelson Mandela of the anarchist set. And if by chance a corporate hitman puts one right between his eyes, Assange will become a martyr to millions of would-be techno-jihadists around the world.

    Some people will say to the previous sentences, “Why should the government care if some anti-establishment losers hate them? Jailing or killing Assange will strike fear into their hearts and make them think twice before they mess with Uncle Sam!” Except that you’re forgetting that the government can’t suppress dissidents or information on the Internet. Advocatus Diaboli explains:

    Some techy morons, including a retard from MIT, predict that they can stop such leaks. However these clever morons don’t get one property of information (as opposed to content). If someone can read it, see it, transfer it, back it up or send it to someone-it can be copied and unlike entertainment related content, low quality copies are as valuable and useful as high fidelity copies.

    I wrote something similar last year on why fighting online piracy is technologically impossible:

    Finally, both Agnostic and Journalism Online don’t even take into consideration the rampant growth of online piracy in the past few years. Part of the reason that TimesSelect, the New York Times’ online subscription program, flopped (which, by the way, Agnostic COMPLETELY FAILS TO MENTION in any of his rants) was because most of the subscription-only content was stolen and thrown up on blogs and websites where people could read it for free. Have any of these idiots heard of BitTorrent or LimeWire? The RIAA, MPAA, ESA and other media interest groups have been entirely unable to keep people from illegally downloading music, movies, and games from P2P networks and torrent websites. The anti-P2P groups are retreating on all fronts – file-sharing is now legal in Canada, and the Pirate Party recently won a seat in the European Parliament. What’s going to stop people from ripping worthwhile articles from subscription newspapers and putting them up on the web? Nothing. Trying to fight online piracy is like one person trying to play Whack-a-Mole with one mallet and a trillion moles.

    Forget piracy – attempting to fight the spread of information on the Internet PERIOD is like trying to play Whack-a-Mole with one mallet and a trillion moles. No matter how many times Wikileaks gets taken offline, they’ll simply set up shop somewhere else. And even if Wikileaks goes down for good, the concept and information they publicized will continue to exist. Men may die and organizations may disband, but ideas live on. Hell, there are probably already plenty of people who, inspired by Assange’s efforts, will set up their own Wikileaks-like websites. You think Interpol’s going to be able to arrest them all? You think Bank of America and the CIA will be able to recruit enough hackers to shut them all down?

    Put simply, if you oppose Julian Assange and Wikileaks, there is no way for you to win against him. You can only choose how you will lose. The cat is out of the bag, the toothpaste is out of the tube, insert your favorite metaphor here. Arguing over things like whether Assange has the right to play God with state secrets is missing the point entirely. Short of mankind shutting down the Internet entirely and returning to a pre-computer existence, the revolution will stay alive.

    Martin Luther could not have predicted that his followers in Wittenberg would proclaim a violent revolt against Catholicism in his absence, or that even more radical Protestant theologians would rise in his stead. Likewise, neither Assange nor we have any idea where the Wikileaks revolution will take us. We can only wait and watch.

    source: http://www.inmalafide.com/
  7. 377OHMS


    If the net is used for anarchy the net will be regulated, controlled, restricted. Congratulations.

    The White Zone is for loading and unloading only. :)
  8. Ricter


    Everytime Power installs more cameras in public we're told, "if you're not doing anything wrong then you have nothing to hide."

    So, Power, if you're not doing anything wrong...

  9. It's a no brainer, you uncover your cable you get arrested.
    #10     Dec 7, 2010