EDITORIAL

Defend Assange’s truth-telling

A photo of Julian Assange edited by adding a U.S. flag covering his mouth.
Digital art by Antonio Marín Segovia
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In subservience to the U.S., Britain plans to turn over whistleblower and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to be tried for espionage. His crime? Opposing U.S. war atrocities in Iraq.

If convicted, Assange faces up to 175 years in prison. He has already spent a thousand days in maximum security Belmarsh Prison, Britain’s Guantánamo Bay. Before that, he spent seven years isolated in the Ecuadorian embassy. Civil liberties activists worldwide condemn his persecution as violating his free speech rights, not to mention society’s right to a free press!

It’s unequal justice. As of this writing, only a handful of right-wing leaders of the January 2021 attempt to overturn the U.S. 2020 election have been sentenced to any jail time. Why the difference?

Because espionage, treason and sedition laws are meant to target left opposition, not Nazis and white supremacists. During both world wars, thousands of U.S. socialist and pacifist resisters went to prison. Nearly 150 opponents of WW I got life sentences.

This tells us something fundamental about capitalist so-called democracy. For piercing its façade, Assange deserves loud worldwide support.

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