On December 7, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was arrested in London just after he presented himself voluntarily before police and authorities. After a court hearing that lasted around an hour, a district judge denied bail and sent him to Wandsworth prison. While he has since been released on bail, the threat of his incarceration remains.
The alleged motive for the arrest is a warrant issued by Swedish authorities, where he is accused of sexually attacking two women. Assange vehemently denies the allegations, and the case against him is certainly not helped by the erratic way in which the accusations have been handled. After a first police investigation was started on August 14, prosecutor Eva Finné cancelled the arrest warrant that had been issued, and stated that she did not believe Assange was guilty of rape. New allegations by the purported victims resulted in a second police investigation, and a tortuous process that produced a new arrest warrant. The whole process has justly been suspected as being motivated by US government pressure.
Julian Assange should be freed, and adequate conditions must exist before an impartial inquiry of the accusations against him can be started.
Very sensitive and revealing information on US rulers′ arrogance, hypocrisy, lies, threats and outright atrocities have been exposed with the uncovering of thousands of official government documents during the last months. So the context is only too clear: US rulers and big business have unleashed their fury against WikiLeaks and its most recognized public figure.
The persecution against Assange is part of an aggressive campaign to shut down WikiLeaks and deny us the right to know facts that concern the whole of humanity.
Among other measures, US businesses have suspended the hosting of internet services for WikiLeaks. To their dismay, this crude attempt has been frustrated by international supporters of the whistleblower site, who have set up more than seventy “mirror” portals.
While conservative US politicians are calling for the death penalty against those responsible for revealing the incredibly embarrassing diplomatic and military dispatches, the British magazine “The Economist”, usually so congenial to US policies, has characterized the leaks as “unpluggable”. In other words, the WikiLeaks phenomenon means that rules have been changed from now on. Governments will be held to public scrutiny, and no “national security” pretext should stop some of their most abominable acts from being made public.
Readers of this declaration are almost certainly aware of the most important and shameful policies and practices that have been uncovered: the spying on the United Nations Organization General Secretary; the support for corrupt governments imposed by the US itself, as the one in Afghanistan; the fact that the “war against the narcos” in Mexico has really been conducted from the US embassy in Mexico City; the incredible degree of submissiveness of governments, and not only the one headed by the current president of Mexico, but the one that rules over England and the whole of Britain as well.
WikiLeaks and Julian Assange should be unambiguously and decidedly defended. Current threats to world peace and stability are not the result of the truth being known, but rather from the very real and violent wars and military interventions by the US, under the cover of such lies as pretending that the government of Iraq before the American intervention had weapons of mass destruction; or that it had somehow participated in the preparation of the September 11 attack on the New York Twin Towers.
The US government cannot claim it is defending legitimate state secrets and a legal order to sanctify them, when its military interventions under false pretexts and stories invented in order to disorient public opinion have caused more than one hundred thousand civilian deaths and more than a million and a half refugees and displaces people in Afghanistan and Iraq.
No more lies and disinformation from Washington!
Defend freedom of information!
The above statement has been jointly issued by Socialist Action/Ligue pour l’Action socialiste, Canadian State; Socialist Action/USA; and Liga de Unidad Socialista, México.