By Paracelsus 4 Comments
The late George Orwell once quipped that there are some views so ludicrous that only intellectuals could believe them- no working person in their right senses would do so( he was referring to a popular belief amongst left-wing cirlces during WWII that US troops stationed in the UK were there not to fight the Axis but to put down a putative revolution).
Much of the arguments put forward by the supporters of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (now domiciled in the Ecuadorian embassy in Knightsbridge, London) has the same Alice-in-Wonderland quality. Whilst the ultimate truth or falsehood of the allegations of sexual misconduct made by two Swedish women against Assange can only be tested in court, at the very least we have received a blizzard of blather from the WikiLeaks founder and his supporters(eerily reminsicent of those made by several individuals such as French philosopher Bernard Henri-Levy and comedienne /actresss Whoopi Goldberg to defend director Roman Polanski on charges of raping a 13 year old girl back in 1977 and most recently George Galloway).
The first red-herring is that Mr Assange fears to go to Sweden for fear of being extradited therein to the United States and presumably executed, the implication being that Sweden, has suddenly morphed into a clone of North Korea and an uncritical toady of Uncle Sam. Which brings me to the point sedulously ingored by his supporters- wouldn't it be easier after all for the US to seek his extradition from the UK on the terms of the much criticized UKUSA Extradition Treaty of 2003 rather than do so from Sweden?(anyway the European Convention On Human Rights precludes both the UK and Sweden from sening people to societys where they might be executed)
Secondly, it is stretching this author's credulity beyond breaking point to believe that the UK High and Supreme Courts, the Swedish justice system are all pawns in the hands of the White House or Langley. (readers of this blog will be all too aware of that I am NO uncritical supporter of the US at times)- one is tempted to think of Kenneth William's character in "Carry On To The Senate"- "infamy, infamy, infamy- they've ALL bloody well got it in-fa-me!" Which brings me to John Pilger's assertion(that he has so far failed to back up this outre assertion with facts) that the accusations made by the women in question are "concocted" and the results of a dastardly CIA "honey trap"( I personally think Pilger for one gives the Agency WAY more credit than it deserves- I mean, it didn't even see 9/11 coming!).
Thirdly , IS Sweden the kind of country that routinely kow-tows to the US or any powerful nation? The evidence suggests NO- during WWII, it courageously sheltered Jewish refugees from Denmark and other occupied countries , refused to join NATO during the Cold War, gave a home to young Americans "dodging the draft" during the Vietnam War( and remained highly critical of US policy during this conflict) much to the unconcealed displeasure of the Johnson and Nixon administrations!
To conclude, the case made by Assange's supporters contains enough BALONEY for him to open his own chain of delicatessens(under no stretch of the imagination can someone trying to avoid answering allegations of sexual misconduct term himself a "refugee" under the terms of the 1951 UN Convention , which was drawn up in order to prevent a repitition of the forcible repatriation of Russian POWS, DPs, the "Victims Of Yalta" to the USSR between 1944-47, and their summary execution or deporartation to the freezing hell of Siberian Gulags, as the impeccably liberal/left-wing Guardian concluded last Friday in an editorial).
Fiat ruat justitia caelum- let justice be done though the heavens fall- let Mr Assange face his accusers in Sweden and stop acting like a five year old trying to avoid a spanking!