The Socialist Equality Party (UK) urges all readers of the World Socialist Web Site to attend our public meeting in London on Sunday February 23, to demand freedom for imprisoned WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning.
Don’t miss this important public meeting being held on the eve of the extradition hearing in London. Keynote speakers are Joseph Kishore, the SEP’s candidate for President of the United States; WSWS journalist Oscar Grenfell from the SEP (Australia); and SEP (UK) National Secretary Chris Marsden.
Socialists from the three imperialist countries trying to silence Assange and Manning will outline the fundamental principles and programmatic conceptions that must animate the fight for their freedom. The meeting will include a Q&A.
Assange has been charged under the Espionage Act and faces a 175-year prison term, or possibly the death penalty, for courageously exposing US war crimes and illegal mass surveillance against the world’s population. Former US army soldier Chelsea Manning has been incarcerated for nearly 12 months in a US federal prison for refusing to testify against Assange.
At stake are fundamental democratic rights—including free speech and freedom of the press—now being shredded by a ruling class that has embarked on the road to war and dictatorship against the working class.
The US extradition hearings in London are a show trial, with a corrupt UK legal system preparing to deliver Assange to the clutches of the US military-intelligence apparatus.
February’s extradition hearing is the outcome of a decade-long campaign of lawless state persecution abetted by the official political and media establishment in every country.
Assange and Manning will not be freed by appeals to “dissident” MPs, human rights organisations or trade unions.
Jeremy Corbyn’s actions are an object lesson in the failure of any strategy based on appeals to Labour and its “left” representatives. Corbyn shamelessly betrayed the anti-war sentiments that propelled him into the Labour leadership. For years he kept his mouth shut about the world’s most famous political prisoner, being tortured in the centre of London! Corbyn’s 30 second statement last week in parliament opposing Assange’s extradition was a cynical face-saving operation before he departs for the safety of Labour’s backbenches.
Corbyn was assisted by the pseudo-left parties of the affluent middle class, who abandoned Assange as part of their lurch into the camp of imperialism. Obsessed with identity politics and the fight for wealth and privilege, having promoted regime-change operations across the Middle East under the fraudulent banner of “humanitarian intervention,” organisations such as the Socialist Workers Party and Socialist Party are politically hostile to Assange. Recycling the lies of the Pentagon and its liberal mouthpieces such as the Guardian and the New York Times, they lined up with fraudulent sexual allegations against Assange by the Swedish state and retailed the anti-Russia narrative employed by the Democratic Party to justify taking Assange down, depicting him as a tool of the far right.
Our meeting is dedicated to the independent political mobilisation of the international working class, the only social force with the power to secure Assange and Manning’s freedom. The objective basis for securing Assange and Manning’s freedom is already emerging in the resurgence of the international class struggle and eruption of mass protests against the intolerable growth of social inequality and the growing threat of dictatorship and war.
Free Julian Assange! No US extradition!
Sunday, February 23, 2:30 p.m.
Mahatma Gandhi Hall
41 Fitzroy Square
London, W1T 6AQ
(nearest Tube: Great Portland Street)
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