There will be some who are already sick of hearing about Julian Assange. But for those who feel that way it really is time to think about what’s happening here. For the last 60 years the world has been subjected to various US Governments using a combination of ignorance and might to reshape the world as they would prefer it. I specifically say “US Governments” because, I, like many, have met many America citizens who remain aghast at what their government does in their name. There are, after all, good people everywhere-and Julian Assange is one of them.
Since the creation of the web the oppression game is no longer about marching in with a bigger army, a bigger gun,waving your flag and writing your own history. That’s why there is so much of the “winning of hearts and minds” going on. The web and the technological age gives everyone the opportunity to tell the truth and the rest of us the chance to access it.
We now know without doubt, for instance, Bush and Blair lied, Colin Powell lied to the UN in his famous “I’ve got the pictures” speech. What irks them is getting caught at it. The battle now, then, is for the truth.
The US Govt have tried to come down on Julian Assange in an almost hysterical way. Amazon, Paypal, Mastercard, Visa have all been instructed to pull their services. Assange has become Public Enemy No.1 across the World……and then he gives himself up to face a charge for which he claims he is innocent and is willing to face his accusers. Maybe he should have stayed at large…………the US and Allies are still looking for Bin Laden !
It seems to me he is being presumed guilty until proven innocent. His quest to expose the truth about what the world’s mightiest power is trying to tell us is being challenged simply because he wants to tell the truth.
I don’t agree that he should have revealed everything – the key installations for instance – which is too broad a list and, on this occassion, could put people at risk. But I also understand that he cannot also be seen to be a censor. Censoring is collaboraton.
Julian Assange now has celebrity and cause on his side. Will it be enough? I suspect he needs the people too if the web as tool of free exchange is to remain the beacon of hope for free expression that the world deserves. Expect the power play and bullying to really kick in now. If power really rests with the people now is the time to stand behind the principle of free speech in the western world….and to stand beside Julian Assange and his colleagues.