Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 7th Feb 2011 23:11 UTC
In the News "So why do all these American reporters, who know quite well that they get praise and money for doing what Assange has done, stand in a silence that can only be called cowardly, while a fellow publisher faces threats of extradition, banning, prosecution for spying - which can incur the death penalty - and calls for his assassination? [...] U.S. journalism's business model is collapsing; the people who should be out in front defending Assange are facing cut salaries or unemployment because of the medium that Assange represents. These journalists are not willing to concede that Assange is, of course, a publisher, rather than some sort of hybrid terrorist blogger, because of their self-interested prejudices against a medium in which they are not the gatekeepers." Great article - focussing on the US, but just as applicable in the rest of the world (except the great nation of Iceland, obviously). The internet could very well become the single most important 'invention' in human history. We must stand guard against our governments getting their filthy, inefficient, censoring, controlling, and damaging hands on it.
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no death penalty
by JoeBuck on Tue 8th Feb 2011 01:38 UTC
JoeBuck
Member since:
2006-01-11

I agree with you that the American news media are worse than useless, that the treatment of Bradley Manning is heinous, that the Swedish charges are suspicious. But the US doesn't have an Official Secrets Act like the UK does, and it's difficult to see what Assange could be prosecuted for in the US. Simply receiving leaked classified material and publishing it is something American journalists do on a regular basis.

There's no death penalty for spying that could be imposed here. If anything were to happen to Assange, it would be extra-legal; some of the people connected with the security services in the US, as well as in a number of other countries that Wikileaks has angered, are basically thugs.

Reply Score: 9

RE: no death penalty
by acobar on Tue 8th Feb 2011 08:28 in reply to "no death penalty"
acobar Member since:
2005-11-15

While I agree on general lines with your arguments, I would add the following points:

* Recent track, like Guantanamo prisoners detention conditions, cast a worrying stain on the legal system on USA and its ethics. I think they would not apply the same rules, or lack of thereof, to Assange because he is internationally famous and also because he is a Australian citizen, but I have no idea what they would come with and have a suspicion that they would try something - at least to save face, like "see, you are guilt of this and that, but as an act of good faith, will leave you walk free provided that you recognize you were wrong, begs for pardon, stop publishing any other things you still have, give names to us and pay this bill", on same line used on to be remembered Mcarthyism tragic era;

* Not all USA media is useless, just the big ones. If you search on Internet you will find lots of both, good and bad journalism on USA. I used to go to propeller.com to read about lots of things and the best part used to be the antagonist opinions, but AOL canned it (why? hum ...).

I read a long article on NYTimes a couple of days ago about the leaked things and Assange. While I agree on many things with the article, I also assign to envy many of personal comments directed to Assange. Some may not know, but Assange asked for help to publish things on a responsible way, even though he was a bit ingenuous about what the edited material would be when published. He should have predicted the outcome.

Edited 2011-02-08 08:31 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: no death penalty
by abstraction on Tue 8th Feb 2011 11:58 in reply to "no death penalty"
abstraction Member since:
2008-11-27

I just wan't to clarify something. There is no conspiracy, Swedish authorities is not planning on sending Assange to the United States. The reason for why Sweden wants to get Assange sent to them is that there have been allegations against him and they want to question him about it. He is not charged with anything yet so it is not like he is a fugitive or anything. They only want to question him about the events regarding this alleged rape.

Sweden is not a corrupted country. We don't just send innocent people to other countries without good reason. Our legal system is one of the better in protecting it's citizens rights and especially their right to free speech. Why do you think Assange wanted to have Sweden as the homebase for Wikileaks? The media makes us sound like some sort of fascists. This is as far from the truth as can be.

Edited 2011-02-08 11:59 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: no death penalty
by drahca on Tue 8th Feb 2011 13:38 in reply to "RE: no death penalty"
drahca Member since:
2006-02-23

He is not charged with anything yet so it is not like he is a fugitive or anything. They only want to question him about the events regarding this alleged rape.


He has been arrested and detained, set free on a ridiculously high bail, has to wear an ankle bracelet and report to authorities every morning at 6 AM and all of that without being charged because you friendly Swedes just want to ask him some questions. The Swedish police actually already questioned him about the alleged rapes and the original prosecutor was not even willing to make a case. Indict him already if you believe you have a case.

Sweden is not a corrupted country.We don't just send innocent people to other countries without good reason. Our legal system is one of the better in protecting it's citizens rights and especially their right to free speech. Why do you think Assange wanted to have Sweden as the homebase for Wikileaks? The media makes us sound like some sort of fascists. This is as far from the truth as can be.


Get you head out of your ass please. Sweden is acting as a puppet of the USA. No way would you otherwise use Interpol if you only want to question someone. You should read some Franz Kafka.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: no death penalty
by Soulbender on Tue 8th Feb 2011 14:28 in reply to "RE: no death penalty"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Sweden is not a corrupted country.


Or so we Swedes like to tell ourselves. At best Sweden is not as corrupt as some other countries.

We don't just send innocent people to other countries without good reason.


Yes we do. I seem to remember the recent issue over christian iraqis being sent back.

Our legal system is one of the better in protecting it's citizens rights and especially their right to free speech.


True but that doesn't mean mistakes aren't made and sometimes the Swedish government can be incredibly wrongheaded. See Anders Alhmark, for example.
Isn't it also amazingly timely that these allegations appear at this point in time? Some would questions such a lucky co-incidence.

The media makes us sound like some sort of fascists. This is as far from the truth as can be.


Maybe not as far as can be. With the creepy popularity of Sverige Demokraterna you could argue that fascism is on the rise in Sweden.

Edited 2011-02-08 14:32 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: no death penalty
by Laurence on Tue 8th Feb 2011 12:53 in reply to "no death penalty"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

I agree with you that the American news media are worse than useless, that the treatment of Bradley Manning is heinous, that the Swedish charges are suspicious. But the US doesn't have an Official Secrets Act like the UK does, and it's difficult to see what Assange could be prosecuted for in the US. Simply receiving leaked classified material and publishing it is something American journalists do on a regular basis.

I'm sure the US could trump up some kind of terrorism charges. Or even worse yet, change legislation to give themselves powers to charge him.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: no death penalty
by earksiinni on Tue 8th Feb 2011 17:43 in reply to "no death penalty"
earksiinni Member since:
2009-03-27

If anything, Wikileaks has increased my respect for the traditional media. The leaks have confirmed that all those lines in news reports that read "our correspondent reports that" or "one anonymous government source claims that"--you know, the ones where they don't know enough to claim it as categorically true and yet wouldn't want to leave you out of the lurch--have actually turned out to be completely true. It's a testament to the professionalism and sleuthing skill of some reporters.

Obviously, I'm not talking about Fox News, but Fox isn't traditional at all. To claim that the traditional US media is "less than worthless" is sheer hyperbole.

You are aware, of course, that the most traditional US media source of all, the New York Times, is collaborating with Wikileaks to publish the cables?

Reply Parent Score: 1