It is astonishing the extent to which Australians don’t give a shit about what happens to Julian Assange. He can be kept in a Kafka prison, undergo a Kafka trial at the behest of a country who openly want to torture him, and probably kill him. But no one except a very few good guys, like George Christensen, says a word. Nothing from the Poster Child for Principle, Penny Wong. Nothing from Albanese. Of course nothing from ScoMoFo or the invisible Payne-in-the-ass. Nothing from our oh-so-wonderful stately journalists, from Michelle Grattan or Laura Tingle or Katherine Murphy, and of course nothing from the stable of Murdoch toads. Nothing from Paul Barry and of course nothing from Michael “Gold Star” Rowland. Nothing from any of them. Deutsche Welle and Le Monde and Aljazeera can publish opinion pieces on the lunatic sadism of the persecution of an Australian. Cédric Villani, while taking time off from winning Fields medals, can lead a French political call for Assange’s asylum. But from Australians? A screaming nothing.
To even read about Assange, one has to scour. Here are a few recent articles.
Saska Peachey in Jacobin.
Bernard Keane in Crikey.
Phillip Adams and guests on Late Night Live (audio).
Oscar Grenfell in World Socialist Web.
Gary Lord at Michael West Media (09/21/21 – thanks, Simon).
No one else in Australia seems to give a Rat’S.
That other Good Guy, Barnaby Joyce, has written a strong opinion piece in the Sydney Morning Herald, opposing Assange’s extradition to the US. There have also been editorials supportive of Assange in The Age and The Guardian.
Guy Rundle has written an excellent piece in Crikey.
Well-known peacenik Bob Carr has written a good editorial in The Guardian.
The noted scholar Adam Creighton has a weird but strong opinion piece on Assange in The Australian (Murdoch, paywalled).
14 Replies to “RatS 16: The Sacrificing of Julian Assange”
I think you might find that one of Australia’s most honest journalists, Michael West has written something on Julian Assange (https://www.michaelwest.com.au/britains-guantanamo-is-julian-assange-a-terrorist/)
George Christensen is a “good guy” ? And he’s now on Alex Jones’s rant show…..hmmmm
Simon, obviously I was teasing about Christensen, but I was also making an important point. What should matter is how people behave, not whether they are in the Good Guy Camp or the Bad Guy Camp. In this instance, Christensen is behaving well and Penny Wong is the quisling.
Thanks for the reminder about Michael West. I had intended to include that link and simply forgot. Of course my point still holds, that it is only a few second tier publishers/journalists who have said anything. The major media and the elder statesmen have been disgracefully silent.
Phillip Adams on Radio National 22:00 M-Th is an ardent supporter and friend of Julian .
Well worth listening too IMO
One sample here
Another example from this year
Thanks, Steve. I have that link above.
I wish I knew enough about politics to know of any particular ramifications that more public figures would face in publicly calling for Assange’s release & return.
Matt, it’s an excellent question. Obviously Assange’s exposure of State (and corporate) nastiness made him a lot of specific enemies. But the almost universal disowning of Assange suggests a very general collusive dishonesty amongst the politicians and the major media. I don’t tend to towards conspiratorial thinking; most of their nonsense can simply be explained by the fact that our Glorious Leaders are third rate and inept. But I think the silence over Assange requires more explanation.
I was sincerely hoping when Trump got kicked out four years too late that the US under Biden would cease pursuing JA
Unfortunately that wish appears to be optimistic at present
Yep. Julian Hill’s been given the job of creating the illusion that the Labor Party has a conscience.
The Age had an editorial on the case for long overdue action today
Thanks. Not a great editorial, but much better than no editorial.
But the Philistines took him, and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza, and bound him with fetters of brass; and he did grind in the prison house.
Pretty much. Now we get to see if the Australian media has any principles, and if Albanese has any balls.