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Monday, 7 February 2011

Welcome to the Show Trial

Banner outside court
Today is the first day in court for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, the London trial will decide whether or not Assange can be extradited to Sweden for alleged rape charges. Assange is adamant that there not be a decision to extradite him as once in Sweden the US authorities will be able to relocate him on terrorism charges which could lead to 'interrogation' in Guantanamo Bay or even death by execution.

The trial is still very much in its early stages so I'm providing two articles that I wrote for work before I set up this blog so you can get a sense of what is going on. You can also check out the Brief History of Wikileaks I created last year.

December 5th 2010
For anybody who isn’t aware of the site, WikiLeaks is an anonymous user contributed database (wiki) based around the gathering and releasing of sensitive material being withheld from the public by senior officials. It has been around the news a lot recently with reports leaking out about how US officials really feel about Afghanistan. Although it is perhaps most famous for uploading a report stating Russia had already been chosen by FIFA, six days before it was announced publicly.

The founder Julian Assange states that the site has opened up the world to information they should already have access to and was meant to take power away from officials and give the power to the people, and that WIkiLeaks is journalism in its purist form. However many governments (including the US and UK) have branded him an ‘Anarchist’ saying all reports on the site were kept form the public for a reason, and that the means used to access this information (mostly hacking official accounts) is criminal therefore Julian Assange should be treated as one. [END]

December 18th 2010
After making his £240,000 bail through known acquaintances and anonymous funds Julian Assange was released on December 18, 2010 and will be due back in court on February 7th 2011. As part of his bail conditions Mr. Assange must wear an electronic tagging device at all times and remains within a set perimeter of a chosen location.

Since being released Assange has been residing as the guest of millionaire supporter Vaughan Smith in his Norfolk mansion. In an attempt to remove the bad image given to him by the US media, Assange released pictures of himself enjoying a traditional Christmas with all of his family and close friends. Assange states that the charges placed against him in Sweden were “politically based revenge tactics” and expects the charges to be dropped very shortly.

Julian Assange
However Assange does fear that he may be extradited to the US on espionage charges in which he could be sentenced for life under US law. This is made even more real in the wake of the US Republican Party releasing plans to investigate WikiLeaks as a terrorist organisation meaning Assange will be put on the US most wanted list which will allow him to be legally targeted by attacks from the US military. In response to this Julian Assange has reluctantly agreed to a lucrative $1.8m book deal. Assange has says he has been forced to do this as all of his WikiLeaks funds have gone towards legal fees and the money from his autobiography will go towards further funding for WikiLeaks. It is also hoped that in being able to provide his side of the story, Assange will be able to de-stigmatise himself in the massively biased, government controlled US media. [END]

I'll try to keep you updated on the trail whenever anything of importance comes up, but if you'd prefer to know every little detail of the trail you can follow the live twitter update here. You can also check out my other blog Critical Hit for more light hearted look at the world; life doesn't have to be all doom and gloom.  


  1. I heard he was just nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

  2. I'm not sure what to think of him.

  3. I support what he does but not how he does it.

  4. I personally think Wikileaks is doing a great thing for the media and the world as a whole.

  5. I definitely support his cause, even more so if the goverments end up persecuting the hell out of him.

  6. It would be absolutely outrageous if he went to Guantanamo Bay.

  7. Urgh. It's funny. What he is accused of is neither proven nor even a crime in the UK...
    Assange does seem arrogant, but that is no reason to throw him in jail, and I deeply respect the man for Wikileaks.

  8. "I definitely support his cause, even more so if the goverments end up persecuting the hell out of him" agree with that

  9. Man, this stuff really gives me the creeps... I think he had every right in the world to do what he did. The more the governments of the modern world act against him the more I despise them.

  10. I feel bad for not hearing about him until his legal troubles.

  11. And it wasn't even rape. It's "sex by surprise" (google it). Not something you thought. Just the condom broke and he already left, but it's a crime in Sweden apparently.
    Funny how governments work. IMHO all governments in the world is corrupt in some way.

    He's the right guy in the wrong place.

  12. @Blu3hand - This is one of the main cases in his defence. What assange did isn't even a crime in the UK nor is it even against any EU regulations.

    The two incedents in question were the condom breaking [as you said] and having sex with a woman who had 'not properly woken up'. They are very pro-feminist in Sweden and the law is always leaning towards the woman, the second charge is the most ridiculous though as he had already had sex with this woman the night before.