Ayatollah Cameron Threatens to invade Ecuador Embassy re: Assange (or, Whitewashing Iran for the US National Security State)

Update: Ecuador granted Julian Assange diplomatic asylum on Thursday.

The British government’s menacing of the Ecuadorian embassy in London on Thursday morning, with its threat that its police might well come on to the embassy grounds to arrest wikileaks leader and fugitive Julian Assange, resembles nothing so much as the Iranian regime’s cavalier attitude to the supposed inviolability of embassies. To be sure, Assange does not himself have diplomatic immunity. But the ground on which the Ecuadorian embassy sits is considered in international law to be Ecuadorian territory, and breaching it is tantamount to an invasion.

There is no question in my mind that President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have pressured British Prime Minister David Cameron into taking this step. The Obama administration’s reaction to the Wikileaks release of State Department cables with a relatively low level of classification has been astonishingly wrong-headed. The Pentagon Papers case in the 1970s established the principle that the US government had a right to try to keep its documents secret from us, but that if the documents were revealed, they could be freely published and cited by the public. In contrast, the current stance of the US government is that classified documents remain classified and US government property even if they have been published! And, State Department spokesmen have actually tried to threaten college students about talking about the documents on social media sites, since if they ever wanted to work for the US government, that sort of thing might be held against them. The Tomdispatch.com site has been banned on US government computers via filtering software because of its use of the Wikileaks cables. These measures are petty and ostrich-like. The cables have been released. Get over it.

The US government is anyway classifying too many documents, which is undemocratic (92 million urgent secrets?). And the US more or less tortured Bradley Manning to punish him for the leaks.

The British threats do a great deal to absolve Iran of its bad behavior toward embassies. British Foreign Secretary William Hague fulminated (with some justification) in November, 2011, that the Iranian authorities had “committed a grave breach” of the Vienna convention in neglecting to protect the British embassy in Tehran from being invaded by angry crowds of protesters on November 29.

In the wake of the embassy invasion, then UK ambassador to Iran Dominick Chilcott told the Washington Post, “as a foreign diplomat, you can’t work in a country that does not respect the norms of the Vienna Convention.”

The incident did not lead to hostage-taking, as had a similar embassy invasion in 1979, when radical youth (including the Mojahedin-e Khalq or MEK members) took the American embassy and kept 52 members of its staff hostage for 444 days.

Now, what is at stake here? What exactly does the [pdf] 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations say? Here is the relevant language:

Article 22
1.The premises of the mission shall be inviolable. The agents of the receiving State may not enter them, except with the consent of the head of the mission.

2.The receiving State is under a special duty to take all appropriate steps to protect the premises of the mission against any intrusion or damage and to prevent any disturbance of the peace of the mission or impairment of its dignity.

3.The premises of the mission, their furnishings and other property thereon and the means of transport of the mission shall be immune from search, requisition, attachment or execution.

There are many difficult issues around diplomatic asylum, the technical term for the status that Mr. Assange sought and obtained from Ecuador. There is a long tradition of diplomatic asylum in South America going back to the 19th century, codified in treaty. (Diplomatic asylum itself was known in early modern Europe, but its precise legal status was in dispute). South American diplomatic conventions condition Ecuador’s attitudes to this unfolding crisis.

But the United States has sometimes accepted the principle, and acted on it. Most famously, the US embassy in Budapest gave diplomatic asylum to Cardinal Joseph Mindszenty for 15 years, beginning during the Hungarian uprising of 1956. Had Communist Hungary sent police onto the grounds of the US embassy and brought the cardinal out in handcuffs, I think we all know how that action would have been received in the United States.

And, ironically, the British embassy in Tehran gave diplomatic asylum to Iranian dissidents during the Constitutional Revolution in Iran in the early 20th century. Again, the Qajar Empire did not invade the embassy grounds to crush the dissidents and ensure absolute monarchy, and if it had, there would have been a war.

Another question is whether Julian Assange is a candidate for political asylum. Technically, a British court has ordered him to be extradited to Sweden for an inquiry as to whether he is guilty of sexual crimes peculiar to Sweden, not exactly rape but rough sex in one instance, and in the case of another woman, resisting, during passionate love-making, a request that he use a condom. (In both cases, the sex appears to have been consensual and so he could not have been charged with rape in the UK or the US). The statute under which he would be tried in Sweden does not exist in the same form in Britain.

Since he is Julian Assange of wikileaks, it cannot be ruled out that the UK judges were influenced in their decision to extradite him by their distaste for his release of government secrets, some of which embarrassed the British government. Many observers believe that if he is tried in Sweden, the US will request that he be extradited to the United States for trial on espionage charges of some sort, and could even be executed.

So a case could certainly be made that he is seeking political asylum in the Ecuadorian embassy, not just fleeing a criminal complaint.

But it seems to me that the asylum issue is anyway a red herring. Because the Vienna Convention strictly forbids the invasion of the embassy grounds, and the UK can’t arrest Assange on those grounds without violating Ecuadorian sovereignty.

The British argument that the Vienna Convention does not apply if the embassy is used for non-diplomatic, criminal purposes is a slippery slope. Cardinal Mindszenty probably did break Hungarian law, after all, and whether laws are legitimate or not is a matter of opinion. Further, everyone knows that governments routinely place intelligence agents in embassies with a diplomatic cover. Spying is not a legitimate embassy function, and is moreover illegal in the host nation, so that you could argue that all embassies can always be invaded in search of the fruits of their espionage there. In fact, that is precisely the Iranian justification for the invasion of the US embassy in Tehran in 1979– that it was a “spy’s nest” not an embassy at all. This assertion is outrageous, but there almost certainly were CIA analysts and operatives based in the embassy. Likewise, Iran arrested UK embassy staff in 2009 on charges that they were playing domestic Iranian politics and not restricting themselves to diplomacy. Once embassies can be violated for ‘criminal’ activity that is so open to interpretation, then that seems a slippery slope.

Finally, Assange did not commit a crime in the UK, and what he is accused of in Sweden isn’t even a crime in Britain. Violating an embassy merely to support an extradition request by a third party is excessive any way you look at it.

The Ecuadorian government denounced the British threat to invade the embassy grounds as unacceptable, and called a meeting of the Organization of American States to seek support. The government of President Rafael Correa thundered, “We are not a British colony!” The Ecuadorian embassy described the British threats as “unacceptable and a menace to all the countries of the world.”

58 Responses

  1. Yes, respect for embassies is of the oldest and most-established principles of international law. The UK would be acting outrageously were they to send police in.

    • International law is being systematically undermined. Only the weak have need of the law. America is strong, the hegemon, these “international laws” that you speak of are only for little countries.

      Tell a policeman that he is breaking the law. After he finishes beating you, he’ll laugh at you.

      I don’t approve of any this, btw. Just to clear.

  2. I’ll accept that the sexual allegations perhaps should be taken more seriously, but the notion that this is what underlies all this is laughable. It’s completely disproportionate.

  3. It’s true that the British threat is outrageous. But you don’t need to play defense for Assange on the rape charges either. If someone consents to having sex, but only if a condom is used, or withdraws consent after the other person does something distasteful, that means theres no consent. That’s rape. This may or may not have happened in Assange’s case (we don’t know, because there hasn’t been a trial), but that doesn’t mean the underlying bare allegations are meaningless or illegitimate. Writing what amount to excuses for rape just distract from the overall point.

    • I think it’s outrageous that you claim Cole’s original post implies the ‘underlying bare allegations are meaningless or illegitimate.’ Where did you read this or get this impression? Cole analyzed the charges under American, British and Swedish law. THAT was germane to his key point about what the British threat could mean for international relations. Stick to the issue at hand instead of using this space as a soapbox.

  4. I’m afraid you are incorrect. The British courts have ruled that the allegations against Assange would constitute rape in Britain.

    link to jackofkent.com

    On a further, more technical point, the British government did not threaten to invade the Ecuadorian embassy. They threatened (although reading the letter it looks to me more like they informed the Ecuadorians they had the power) to revoke the status of the embassy.

    link to headoflegal.com

  5. It would be insane of the UK to declare war against Ecuador because an Australien forgot to use a condom in Sweden.
    Wars could be avoided if their leaders received psychiatric counseling.
    Imagine if the US had a better health care system, then the previous US president could have received the mental care he needed, and the Iraq war could have been avoided.
    Imagine if an Australien that is suspected of stealing a car in Sweden, flees to the UK, and seek asylum in the Chinese embassy. Would the UK declare war against China?
    Invading a US or British embassy would be regarded as similar to declaring war.
    My recommendation to Cameron. Get some psychiatric treatment before. Don’t wage a war when it’s not needed.

  6. “Finally, Assange did not commit a crime in the UK, and what he is accused of in Sweden isn’t even a crime in Britain.”

    He’s accused of rape in Sweden. Is that not a crime in Britain now?

    We can all agree that all of these government bodies suddenly up in arms about rape don’t care about rape or they’d be doing something about rape in their own countries, or maybe focusing on the rapes of women and men in detention centres and bordering crossings and prisons around the world. But we can do that without pretending that Assange isn’t accused of rape, a real actual crime. The fault is not with the accusation, it’s with the governments and court systems pretending they care about *that*.

    • There’s no rape and no charge. Pay attention. He is wanted for questioning in relation to allegations that he committed something that translates to “sexual misconduct”. Why is there no charge? Well, the original prosecutor said there is absolutely no basis on which to charge Assange (so the prosecutor was replaced by the swedfish government). One “victim” didn’t even go to the police to report a rape, but to check if Assange could be compulsorily tested for STDs. The other continued to associate with him for weeks after the events in question (which doesn’t disprove any “rape” claim, but doesn’t exactly support it either).

    • What he is accused of doing would be a very minor offence in most Western countries. It was not “rape” in the popular sense of the word.

      The original posters point was that Assange did not commit any crime in Britain.

  7. Bravo Ecuador!

    Wars, the US proping up thugish regimes, Israeli oppression, US government paranoia; when will it all end?

  8. Thank you Professor Cole for extensive coverage. The US Justice Dep’t has a sealed indictment on Julian Assange according to this report.

    A famous asylum case in the Dutch Embassy of South Africa from 1985-1987.

    South Africa’s Detention of Dutch Teacher in Arms Case Sparks Outrage in Netherlands

    (LA Times) July 12, 1985 – Botha was attempting to dampen growing outrage in the Netherlands over De Jonge’s original arrest and his recapture, when several security policemen took him from the Dutch Embassy here after he had escaped from custody and sought asylum.

    Botha asserted that the police, who were taking De Jonge around Pretoria to get him to point out the hidden arms caches, did not realize that he had entered the embassy, which is housed on the second floor of a bank building.

    “As he was all the time legally in custody, … the police escort pulled him back into the passageway,” Botha said, adding that South Africa respects the inviolability of diplomatic premises under international conventions.

    Klaas de Jonge stayed in the Netherlands Embassy in Pretoria and took refuge there for two years after which he was released in exchange for the release of Wynand du Toit, and departed to Holland. In legal terms this was a unique study of asylum, immunity of consulate or embassy grounds.

    Complex Pow Deal Unfolds Southern African Swap Involves 5 Nations and includes Klaas de Jonge

  9. Pace Glenn Greenwald on twitter, it seems Assange offered to go to Sweden to face the charges, if the Swedes would promise not to extradite him further to the US. And the Ecuadorans made the same offer. The Swedish government has refused this deal, which makes it somewhat harder to believe that their primary interest here is the enforcement of their own laws.

    Greenwald cites an AFP report here:

    link to google.com

    • The Swedish government has refused this deal, which makes it somewhat harder to believe that their primary interest here is the enforcement of their own laws.

      Whoa whoa whoa.

      Sweden has an extradition treaty with the United States that imposes certain responsibilities on the Swedes, the violation of which could be a problem for Swedish-American relations.

      It does not follow that their unwillingness to violate the extradition treaty must demonstrate that their motive is not the enforcement of their own laws.

      • It certainly DOES show their ulterior motives. Sweden has not charged Assange for any crime, he’s simply “wanted for questioning”. To which the Ecuadorian Embassy has granted “any Swedish officials” to come to the embassy and hold their questioning there. . . . . It was refused!!! My guess is the IKEA furniture in Britain is maybe not the same as in Stockholm??
        If this has anything to do with the possible crimes (of which i hope he is prosecuted of if he is charged), it would be concluded by now.

      • This guy again. He’ll do anything to convince us the elephant in the room isn’t there. I actually do wish you had your way and Assange was extradited to the US. They would then either a) be forced to put him on trial, where it would be laughable to see how they frame his “crimes” of publishing already leaked documents or b) they would detain him indefinitely, further eroding US credibility in terms of its disdain for due process. This is the same school of thought that advocates military intervention in the Middle East as if empire overreach isn’t what extremists are shooting for.

    • Greenwald is the go to guy for a lot of good info on Assange. He has left Salon and is now with The Guardian. He starts on the 20th. Comment is Free section.

      I have rarely, if ever, seen such a miasma of lies, character assassination, and disinfo about anyone in my life. The NYT just ran a piece where they brought up Assange’s supposed lack of toilet flushing skills. I mean, who gives a shit?

      After a lot of criticism the Times has pulled that reference.

  10. Big fan, but you always come out confused when you talk about the Assange case. Julian is indeed accused of rape. The specific accusation that is leveled at him does not have an exact equivalent in British law, but that’s because they are two different legal systems written in two different languages. The crime that Assange is accused of in Sweden *includes* rape and other types of forced sex. You even make the (honestly) stupid assertion that he has violated a law that doesn’t exist in Britain. But of course it does. It is a regular sexual coercion law. (Sexuellt ofredande * 5, Våldtäkt and Sexuellt tvång.)

    Furthermore it makes no sense for Assange to be extradited from Sweden to the U.S., especially in the way you describe it. If there’s indeed a death penalty or other cruel penalty accosiated with the crimes the U.S. would accuse him of, then there’s no way he could be extradited from Sweden (that would be totally illegal and doesn’t happen). Any other accusations just wouldn’t fly anyway.

    You usually paint a shady picture of the events leading up to the police investigation an trial, but this is just a wrong this to do. If you’ve followed criminal cases before then you should know that things are pretty often not what they appear when details leak to the press. After a trial has been concluded and the protocols can be read, the picture that emerges are more often than not the same as before the trial. In fact the whole point of a trial is to make any hastily jumped-to conclusions unnecessary. You make very hasty conclusions about the case in which both Swedish and U.K. prosecution has deemed the charges reasonable, in other words believable.

    Also, you perpetuate a horribly tired old myth about the grounds of an embassy legally being the property of the country it belongs to. I repeat; it’s a myth, and a very old and tired one. The embassy of Ecuador sits on U.K. soil. The preposterous suggestion about “invasion” is completely off the wall. The U.K. need only revoke Ecuador’s diplomatic status and grab Assange.

    • There are no “Sweeds” that would put together this many logical fallacies without embarrasment. This is written by a paid dis-information agent. The agressively stupid arguments, pronouncements and assumptions indicate and “American” agent.

      TROLL!

    • He’s not accused of rape as it is defined in British, American or any other statute I know of. The difference is not language.

      One of the women went on sleeping with him for a week after the Episode of the Torn Condom, the other threw a party for him after their lovemaking. He is wanted for questioning on suspicion of deliberately tearing his condom after being requested to wear one.

      It is a crock.

      And a distraction from the reasons for which he is really being bothered by the courts of great powers.

      • Well, Sweden is neither the U.S. nor Britain so that’s no surprise. What he is suspected of (on “reasonable grounds”) is “Sexuellt ofredande * 5, Våldtäkt and Sexuellt tvång” which literally translates into “sexual molestation, rape and sexual coercion”. In other words, there is going to be about more than just a broken condom in court.

  11. I would not be surprised if the UK broke into the embassy. If the Iraq war taught us anything, it’s that the USA and the UK, when their forces combine, roll over any and all intl law that doesn’t agree with their worldview. I think you are right to call Cameron the Ayatollah.

    • True. The Brits have truly become lap dogs to US imperialism

  12. I think you could have made your point without minimizing the seriousness of what he is alleged to have done in Sweden, which is what you did when you summed it up as a bit of rough sex that wouldn’t even be a crime elsewhere (“sexual crimes peculiar to Sweden”).

    In England, it IS a crime to have sex with someone who is asleep, because he or she cannot by definition give consent. Both the Magistrate’s court and the High Court who heard Assange’s case against extradition mentioned in their rulings that this specific allegation against him would constitute a crime under English law, and that crime would be rape.

    So there was no need to characterize the content of these allegations as something that wouldn’t be a problem were it not for those persnickety Swedes, with their over-zealous ideas about consent. It’s perfectly possible to believe that UK gov’s threat to violate the immunity of the Ecuadorean Embassy is outrageous and stupid, and to perhaps wonder about the convenient timing of the allegations against Assange, without doing that.

  13. Q: Why hasn’t there ever been a coup in Washington?
    A: The US doesn’t have an embassy there.

  14. Assange did commit a crime in England. This is indisputable, albeit a fairly minor one. He most certainly violated the terms of his bail.

    However, storming the Embassy is insanely out of proportion to that crime.

    It’s clear that our masters have decided to destroy Assange, he is to be a lesson to anyone who imagines that they can challenge the power of the state.

  15. For those who are analysts of the charges against Assange in Sweden: have you failed to mention or simply don’t know that his accusers…

    1. Wrote rightist screeds for and associated with groups patronized and funded by CIA operatives Carlos Alberto Montaner and Luis Posada Carriles (who is also believed to have bombed a Cuban flight killing 73 people; subsequently he was shielded from extradition by…you got it, the U.S.).
    2. Have written online manuals on how to get revenge on ex-boyfriends.
    3. Wrote exculpatory text messages and twitter posts after the alleged “crimes” and in one instances threw a party in Assange’s honor after the “crime,” tweeting about it that she was with the “coolest and smartest people in the world.”

    I don’t downplay the nature of the charges so much as point out that they seem politically motivated. That’s backed up by the fact that Sweden won’t promise not to extradite him to the U.S. for potential execution.

  16. Assange will be visiting Bradley Manning for sure. it is just a matter of time. whether in the Ecuadorean Embassy or elsewhere, it a fait accompli.

    watching the Swedes and the English do the Americans’ dirty work is an awesome and sad display of the rule of men over law. power corrupts. in this case Assange stepped on the toes of the angry Giant/Superpower.

    sad a folk hero like Assange would be sold off by a country like Sweden, which gladly will sell him to the Empire, and England, the poodle, dutifully obeys its masters’ bidding. all along i thought Sweden was a moral country. sounds like Somalia. seems the “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” story about Sweden wasn’t just a fiction about the corruption of Swedish Society. it obviously was an honest glimpse of the corrupt society that the Assange affair illustrates.

    Assange will “disappear” into the American gulag, sooner or later. Sad.

  17. NOT ‘more or less”!
    According to my reading of the facts presented…he(Bradley Manning) was tortured….PERIOD!

  18. Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino told a news conference that Ecuador had received a written threat on Wednesday from Britain that “it could assault our embassy” if Assange was not handed over.

    Has anyone seen this letter?

    There is no question in my mind that President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have pressured British Prime Minister David Cameron into taking this step.

    That seems a bit of a stretch. Being angry about the release of classified information and violating embassies are two quite different things.

  19. True, Sweden could not legally hand over Assange to the United States unless the U.S. government gave a commitment to Sweden that it would not to seek the death penalty when it brings Assange to trial (on whatever the charges in that sealed indictment may be). But even without the prospect of an execution, Julian Assange says he has reason to fear mistreatment if he is handed over to the United States. The treatment accorded in detention to the alleged source of the Wikileaks documents, Pfc. Bradley Manning, suggests those fears may be justified.

    If Assange does end up in Sweden, the Swedish authorities will likely be asked by the U.S. government to surrender Assange. If they comply with that U.S. request, it would not be the first time that Swedish authorities responded to American pressure by agreeing to violate their own and international legal norms.

  20. Professor, you are completely wrong. It is permissible for Great Britain to invade the Ecuadorian Embassy, because what the King says is right. Also, it is not permissible for Ecuador or any other 2nd tier nation to respond with reciprocity until the Northern European nations give them permission to do so.

  21. I really don’t understand why is it necessary to pretend that charges in Sweden are a joke. I don’t believe that he actually offered to go to Sweden. If he wanted to go there, he could have done that. If he is accused of smth else by US later, he can try to go to the embassy then. Right now all he is accused of is the Swedish stuff.

    • Officially, he’s wanted for questioning in Sweden. He’s offered to answer questions via videolink, but the Swedes aren’t interested in that.

  22. This is not really about Assange, but about the ability and disposition being exercised by the US/Elite Establishment to confirm its power over the Little People, domestically and abroad. Especially individuals like Assange, or Bradley Manning, and any one else who stands to empower The People so effectively. Its one thing for a smart guy with a blog like this one, but another thing when people like Assange can multiply their impact so dramatically. In today’s world that could potentially mean anybody with a used laptop and a lack of sufficient respect. Were the Establishment to NOT make an example of such people it would leave itself open to the End of Top-Down Power as we have always known it, from several billion different points. These are very, very big stakes indeed.

    The thing about Sweden, as noted in this link from one of Glenn Greenwald’s many excellent posts, is how lacking in transparency their legal system is link to ggdrafts.blogspot.com.br
    In terms of disposition to abuse people on demand by the US, Sweden was notoriously complicit in the CIA renditions of people later determined to be innocent.link to hrw.org

    Regarding Assange, the public record to this point demonstrates an extraordinarily well-focused and relentless national commitment to “get” this particular guy, aside from whatever he may have done to/with those women, and the unabridged story of his prosecution is nothing if not “shady.”

    To be fair, there is no “threat” to invade the embassy; the “observation” being made is that the legal status of the embassy could be changed, which would allow whatever naturally follows in terms of “law enforcement.” Funny how law works, when it is twisted to serve the purposes of a government: it essentially becomes arbitrary and is no longer really law.

    Which is the underlying issue at stake. At whatever point Assange is lucky enough to make it to Ecuador, he stands to be abducted off the street or whatever else the lawyers in DC/Langley rationalize. And so other smart alecs with access and and spare jump drives get the right message, he will not be forgotten until he is either in a grave or the equivalent of Gitmo.

    And between the fate of Manning and Assange the message will not be lost. Creativity and initiative, and all that other stuff, is fine as long as it serves to make the system and/or those above you stronger. Otherwise, ye best know your place.

  23. If I worked at the UK’s embassy in Ecuador, I’d be real busy shredding documents right now. Because if Cameron does attack the Ecuadorian embassy in the UK, in gross violation of international law, an appropriate retaliation would include seizing the UK’s embassy and publishing any piece of paper they can find, whether it’s top secret diplomatic cables or lunch receipts.

    What an appalling mess, when Sweden can’t be trusted not to illegally hand Assange over to the Americans and the UK can’t be trusted at all!

  24. It is very hard to believe the US is not exerting a very heavy hand in this affair. I am shocked that the UK would threaten to withdraw diplomatic status. Clearly Assange’s release of US diplomatic documents is at the core of this conflict. Has the UK and US really dissolved to the level of blatant disregard for diplomatic security and integrity? The US has clearly walked away from international agreements on war and torture. Once our governments fail to uphold the law, how can we expect our banks to bother with following the law either? Or anyone else for that matter, it is just a power play now.

  25. We shouldn’t be letting Australia off the hook, either. They should be defending the rights of their citizen. They should be calling loudly for Swedish representatives to come to the UK and interview him in the Ecuadorian Embassy, as has been offered.

    • Ansolutely. All other Australians should call the foreign minister’s office on (02) 6277 7500 to protest Assange’s abandonment.

  26. If USA wants Assange so much, and has such good relations with Britain, why didn’t they just ask for his extradition from there? Why involve Sweden at all?

    The case against Assange in Sweden is kind of weak, but surely the police has a right to at least questing him regarding the allegations? My suspicion is that the case will be dropped at that point, which would surely be ironic given all the furor.

    • Assange had committed no crime in the UK and was not in UK custody, and so extradition was difficult. The same would not be true in Sweden, where once he was in the system, he could be turned over.

    • It is a weak case – which is why it was dropped (before the politicians intervened), and why no charges were restored. His lawyer claims that Assange offered to answer questions by videolink, and the Swedish government rejected that.

  27. Speaking as a woman, who actually suffered rape – at knifepoint in my apartment in the middle of the night – and as a diplomat (retired) I am disgusted by the behavior of the UK, US, and Swedish governments. And deeply thankful that I am not on active duty anymore, as this policy of the UK government, with I am sure the strong encouragement of the US, threatens all diplomats everywhere.

    And the US doesn’t have to execute Assange – just keep him in solitary confinement, forbidden to talk to anyone, maybe stripped naked to ensure that he has no forbidden objects – how long before he is driven insane?

    That is, if they don’t just use a drone on him and get it over with.

    • Wealth, men and power: the war game they play. I’m so sorry for all forms of abuse on women. Women are always in a position of vulnerability, their strength of character is due to the fact they bear our next generation and care. Where military conflicts are fought, women and children will be the main victims. The charges have been trumped up in Sweden due to the fact a European Arrest Warrant (EAW) was needed. The process by the prosecution had many flaws from the start. Just google “ofredande” or misconduct (misleadingly translated as molestation) – Anna Ardin and her blog Rebella – the role played by their lawyer Claes Borgstrom, Sweden’s former equality ombudsman. To be clear I do not condone Assange’s forcefull sex acts and should face a court for a ruling on the accusations. The Supreme Court ruling in legal terms had to take the prosecutor’s EAW at face value due to new European law dealing with states. Earlier extradiction law is much more critical of the case put forward by the prosecution.

  28. If we’re willing to go this far to destroy Assange, I wonder how much covert money we’re now willing to pour into Ecuador’s next election to steal it from Morales and get a more cooperative regime in power?

    We’ve cheated in allies’ elections. We’ve overthrown trivial governments on absurd Domino theory arguments. We’ve also gotten kicked out of so many countries that the ol’ covert election-rigging budget is probably begging for reasonable targets. Ecuador is small and poor, and a dollar still goes a long way there.

  29. link to craigmurray.org.uk

    “…I returned to the UK today to be astonished by private confirmation from within the FCO that the UK government has indeed decided – after immense pressure from the Obama administration – to enter the Ecuadorean Embassy and seize Julian Assange.

    This will be, beyond any argument, a blatant breach of the Vienna Convention of 1961, to which the UK is one of the original parties and which encodes the centuries – arguably millennia – of practice which have enabled diplomatic relations to function. The Vienna Convention is the most subscribed single international treaty in the world…”
    -Craig Murray

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