2012-06-28 Julian Assange needs another Houdini? Romeo Dallaire socked it to them. Conflicting reports on the departure of Elections Canada Robo-call man.
Is there a bigger “David versus Goliath” story than
- Julian Assange (Wikileaks) versus
- the American Military Empire?
What a cliff-hanger! Will he be extradited to Sweden, or will Ecuador come through?
For Assange, it is the difference between death and life (the Swedes will turn him over to the Americans. Ecuador, into whose custody he masterfully escaped, will hopefully grant him asylum.)
For democracy it is life or death. Citizen in every would-be democracy, let’s celebrate his work!
The most recent developments:
- June 20: JULIAN ASSANGE PULLS A HOUDINI. He slipped his electronic surveillance ankle bracelet, plus the police and sought asylum inside Ecuador’s Embassy in London See Why Julian Assange’s Ecuador Move is Brilliant,
- And now: June 28, Julian Assange sent extradition notice by Met Police (while awaiting decision from Ecuador to accept or reject him).
History in the making. For a complete listing of the Assange postings, click on Julian Assange, Wikileaks, and scroll down.
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Amy Goodman, Democracy Now, 2011 interview with Julian Assange (Wikileaks) and Slavoj Žižek:
“ Information is a matter of life and death. We’ve learned that through these remarkable trove of documents (INSERT: documents leaked through Wikileaks) that have been released in the last year. The Iraq War Logs, the Afghanistan War Logs, and what’s been called Cablegate, the U.S. State Department documents that are continuing to be released. Why does it matter so much? . . .“
Why DOES it matter so much?
Assange asserts that freedom of speech is not the jewel in democracy, so much as the freedom to communicate our ideas with each other. (WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange & Philosopher Slavoj Žižek, interview by Amy Goodman, Democracy Now! .) He talks about the importance of an accurate societal record of what’s happening; that societal record (independent, accurate journalism) is a driving force for him.
Slavoj Žižek introduces the idea of “public reason”, the independent space of communication and debate. I think of it in relation to our ability to make intelligent decisions for the society in which we live. If public reason is not carried out in an independent space (free of undue influence), we will make lousy decisions, or lousy decisions will be made for us!
But again, Why does it matter? . . .
What if no one knew, about “what’s happening” to Julian Assange and why? Are you hearing it in the media? . . . Try these additional two examples:
- 2012-05-11 Historic judgment: (Charge #2) Bush & Associates found Guilty of torture, Kuala Lumpur.
Would some people act differently if they didn’t know that even a former U.S. President will be held accountable for war crimes?
It’s not only the small players like Bosnian Serb general, Ratko Mladic, or al-Bashir from Sudan, or a general from Sierra Leone that will be put on trial. It is also George Bush and his pals, eventually. If we were in the dark, we would not be in a position to help.
And what if we didn’t know WHO is assuming responsibility? Changing roles in the world, empowerment.
One of the major forces behind the efforts to bring Bush and Company to justice is “part of an initiative by former Malaysian premier Mahathir Mohamad” who stated simply:
“Unlawful use of force threatens the world to return to a state of lawlessness.
The acts of the accused (Bush and Co.) were unlawful.”
It’s a group of international people, with leadership in Kuala Lumpur, who decided that they had to play their part to defend justice for all. Their position is well documented: Historic judgment: (Charge #2) Bush & Associates found Guilty of torture, Kuala Lumpur.
For newcomers: there’s a long list of people working to ensure the arrest of Bush – see Arrest George Bush. Rule of Law essential to democracy.
Another point made in the Amy Goodman interview with Assange and Žižek: the ordinariness of people who just decide to do something.
2. Click on this short video: Julia Bacha: Pay attention to nonviolence (from TED.com – Ideas worth spreading)
“. . I believe that what’s mostly missing for non-violence to grow is not for Palestinians to START adopting non-violence, but for us to start paying attention to those who already are . . “.
(I relate this to Julian Assange’s statement of society’s need to record and communicate what is happening in the real world. . . . If we don’t know . .?!)
Slavoj Žižek, in the interview with Goodman says:
(the “he” referred to is Sgt Bradley Manning who is alleged to have leaked the documents to Wikileaks),
“ . . There are many examples that I know of ordinary people who are not anything special, they are not saints. But all of a sudden, they see something, like probably he, if he is the one, saw all these documents, and something told him, “Sorry, I will not be pushed more. I have to do something here.”
This is so precious today, because it also goes against a note which is in a way true, but it’s exploited by our enemies, this idea ideology today is cynical, people are totally duped, and so on. No, they are not. I prefer her to play a little bit of simple moralism.
From time to time, there are ethical miracles. There are people who still care, and so on and so on. This is very important because, you know, like, let’s not leave this domain of a care for simple, dignified, ethical acts to agencies like Catholic Church and so on. Who are they to talk about it? We . . . should rehabilitate this-I know it doesn’t sound very postmodern or cynical-this idea that there are out there quite ordinary guys, nothing special, but who all of a sudden, as if in a miracle, do something wonderful. That’s almost, I would say, our only hope today.”
Julia Bacha is a quite ordinary person (maybe!) who did something wonderful! What if the villagers’ story wasn’t told, in their communities?
= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
- Julian Assange
- Mahathir Mohamad
- Julia Bacha
- tonnes of other such people
find Canadians looking at actions of
- the U.K. (in relation to Assange) (did their Supreme Court uphold the rule of law?)
- Sweden (how credible is their position on Assange, in whose interests, and with what intent?)
- the U.S.A. (look at the actions of the American military in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, etc. Sgt Bradley Manning is alleged to have leaked documents to Wikileaks, bringing light to the darkness. If time permits sometime I would like to post what has happened to him at the hands of the military beasts. Manning is an incredible hero. I wonder how the historical record will read.)
- Ecuador (how is it that Ecuador can stand up to the U.S. and Canada can’t?)
- Malaysia (Bush found guilty) and
- Palestine (Julia Bacha)
Maybe our stereotypes are challenged, because “what’s happening” hasn’t been communicated to us.
TURN THE TABLES:
What are Ecuadorans, Malayans and Palestinians being told about what’s going on in Canada?
Indeed, what are we being told about what’s going on in Canada? . . .
There’s lots of really good things happening. We just have to communicate it! Democracy Now!
ROMEO DALLAIRE SOCKS IT TO THEM! God bless Senator Romeo Dallaire – his speech against Bill S-10, cluster bombs
Or, how about this? short Animation: Enbridge spills it out
And robo-call updates:
- THE NOOSE IS TIGHTENING: 2012-06-27 New evidence backs claims of questionable Dean Del Mastro donations
- CONFLICTING REPORTS ON THE DEPARTURE OF ELECTIONS CANADA ROBO-CALL MAN: (he “resigned” or he “retired”, Globe & Mail vs National Post, 2012-06-21):
- Election-law enforcer resigns amid robo-calls investigation, G&M OR
- Elections Canada robocalls probe taken over by ‘low-key’ bureaucrat Yves Côté, National Post.
Happy Canada Day!