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Assange again

Every time I go to read some news, I come across more and more about Wikileaks and Assange.

I have a lot of thoughts on the topic, but I think I can summarize them briefly:

1 - Assange is a jerk. He's a manipulator. But after reading the accounts of what happened with the two women in Sweden, I still don't know that he's a criminal. It sounds, by their own accounts, like the women are pissed off because he was a two-timing jerkoff. It's reprehensible, but not criminal.

2 - Assange being tried under the Espionage Act strikes me as the stupidest thing ever. Anyone with any familiarity of wartime history understands that he Espionage Act (and the accompanying Sedition Act, which was later repealed) has traditionally been used to shut people up who disagreed with government acts during wartime. In particular, it was used initially to throw socialists in jail, a response to the 'red scare' after the Bolsheviek Revolution. The act itself is an attempt to curtail freedom of speech and keep those in power from being questioned.

3 - I think Wikileaks is, in general, a good thing. I think that too many people are willing to hand over their critical thinking abilities to the government and never question that what it's doing is wrong. During the Bush (W) years, I was horrified at how American's rights were being suspended and the Constitution was followed only when convenient. The Patriot Act should have never happened, nor should Guantanamo, among other things. Despite Obama's statement that government needs to be more transparent, he's not delivering...perhaps realizing that those empowered by this arrangement, once entrenched, are loathe to give it up. I couldn't help but laugh at the commentary that Wikileaks is helping to keep Obama good on his promises.

4 - I am horrified by the continuing ignorance of constitutional and international values. Lieberman apparently has no clue about the notion of a free press (see here). And then there are the calls for the assassination of Assange. What about a trail to determine if he actually HAS broken any laws? Hague convention, anyone? And, of course, there are issues of things we are actually doing, being exposed by wikileaks, which are probably violations of the Geneva convention. All of these things need to come to light.

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( 1 Transmission — Comment )
Dec. 19th, 2010 10:41 am (UTC)
I agree on all counts.
( 1 Transmission — Comment )

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