In another disgraceful turn of events with the Trump administration’s handprints all over it, the Ecuadorian embassy in London has finally turned over WikiLeaks whistleblower Julian Assange to British authorities. British police forcibly dragged Assange from his refuge.
The administration of Ecuador’s former president Rafael Correa was part of a “pink tide” of Latin American governments attempting reforms at home and independence from the United States. Correa granted Assange sanctuary at the embassy in 2012. But his successor, Lenin Moreno, has become increasingly friendly with big business in Ecuador and with Washington and other imperialist powers. His agreement to hand over Assange did not come as a surprise, but it is one more indication that Washington feels freer than ever to treat Latin America as its own backyard where it reigns supreme.
Now the issue is whether the UK will extradite Assange to the U.S., which wants to convict him on conspiracy charges. By the very fact that Britain has at last made the move to detain Assange, and in light of its general deference to Washington, it seems unlikely that it will fight extradition. Meanwhile, the U.S. government has re-imprisoned Chelsea Manning, the former soldier who made valuable and devastating WikiLeaks revelations possible. Assange and Manning both deserve the support of radicals, journalists, supporters of free speech, and opponents of the Pentagon/CIA/FBI machinery of wars, occupations, torture, civilian murder, and foreign coups.
Below are links to Freedom Socialist articles from 2013 and 2011 that show what an important service WikiLeaks provided by informing the public about the true face of U.S. intervention abroad. Please note that these articles were written before Manning publicly identified as Chelsea Manning.