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Escalating Assange's Torture
<img attachment="image.jpg" align="right">If nothing else, Julian Assange's continued imprisonment lays bare the West's hypocrisy about rule of law and about human dignity. Whatever you may feel about Assange's journalism or views or connections, the man has not been charged with a crime but is a de-facto political prisoner in the heart of London. His jailers would almost certainly prefer to drone-bomb him but they certainly seem satisfied with the stalemate that results in him rotting in the Ecuadorian embassy in London. They are even happier, now that the Ecuadorian government that harbored Assange has been replaced by one more pliant to its true rulers and masters. The article <a href="https://www.truthdig.com/articles/in-defense-of-julian-assange-and-free-speech/" author="John Pilger" source="TruthDig">In Defense of Julian Assange and Free Speech</a> describes the most recent developments, in which the Ecuadorian government---which has housed Assange in its embassy for almost 6 years---has now cut him off from the Internet and from all visitors. <ul> His Swedish accusers dropped their case long ago The Swedish state kept going for years on its own, but has also dropped its flimsy charges The U.S. continues to pressure for extradition; England will happily comply Ecuador has a new government, which kowtows to the West The EU is complicit in London's flouting of the EU charter on human rights. No-one seems to care enough about principle to do anything about it. No-one feels themselves forced to care enough about their career or position to do anything about it. </ul> This action forces Assange's supporters to waste their time and efforts getting back to the prior status quo---where Assange was effectively jailed without charge as a political prisoner in England, but at least could exercise his freedom of speech in public forums. The list of signatories is relatively short, but chock-full of eminences that I recognize and wholeheartedly count among my most valuable and reliable sources. In addition to John Pilger, there are Noam Chomsky, Chris Hedges, Ray McGovern, Oliver Stone, Yanis Varoufakis, Ai Weiwei and Slavoj (Z-)i(z-)ek. More surprising was to see Pamela Anderson's name on the same list, but good for her. It's nice to see them all leaning out the window to try to <i>force</i> the powers-that-be to <i>own</i> their actions. The worst these powers fear is to be stripped of their plausible deniability, to be shown as hypocrites, paying only lip service to human rights when it suits them. They should all be ashamed of themselves---if it hadn't already been amply demonstrated that their capacity for shame is nil. And the media won't help. They've already amply demonstrated that they know which side their bread is buttered on. I imagine that they will either ignore this latest development or spin it as justice against a state terrorist and his supporters. The supporters will, as usual, be branded as deluded---if not foolish---leftists at best, and anti-Western communist terrorists, at worst.