On December 10, the British High Court upheld the appeal of the US government, clearing the way for Julian Assange’s extradition to the US. The ruling was a travesty. It confirms that the British state, as part of a decade-long conspiracy involving the Australian, US, UK and Swedish governments, will stop at nothing in the relentless persecution of this courageous journalist who exposed the atrocities of the US and its allies, including during the criminal invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq.
The ruling means Assange’s life hangs in the balance. To discuss how to take forward the fight for his immediate freedom the Socialist Equality Party (SEP) in Australia has called an emergency online public meeting this Wednesday, December 22 at 7 p.m. (AEDT).
Workers and students in Australia, where Assange is a citizen, are sending the SEP statements of support for the fight to free the WikiLeaks founder, denouncing the British court ruling. They are joining many voices internationally, revealing the widespread revulsion and anger among ordinary people at Assange’s treatment.
We urge all defenders of democratic rights and opponents of imperialist war to participate in the online public meeting on Wednesday evening. Click here to register.
Margaret Grace, a registered nurse, has been an active campaigner for Assange’s freedom since April 2019. She has spoken at a number of SEP public meetings and rallies to defend the WikiLeaks founder. She wrote:
“Julian Assange has committed no crime, yet on 10th December in a continued violation of domestic and international law, the UK High Court made the devastating decision to rubberstamp the appeal to extradite him to the United States.
“The court ignored Assange’s frail and deteriorating physical and mental health, including his recent stroke. He is being placed into the hands of the very people that plotted to kidnap and assassinate him. If anyone was under the illusion that we are living in a democracy, then this belief must be now shattered.
“This award-winning journalist and publisher will face charges of espionage. This is the first time a journalist has been charged under the Espionage Act. This is to send a global message to other investigative journalists and any future organisations like WikiLeaks, that truthful journalism is illegal and punishable by a lifetime in prison, under the most inhumane and brutal conditions imaginable. The US and imperialistic governments want to protect their military interests and ensure they can conduct future crimes without exposure.
“Julian Assange is an international hero to millions and the most important, influential, and ground-breaking journalist of this century. He displayed immense courage and the highest level of integrity in exposing war crimes that were previously unknown and unreported. He made public the illegal wars of Iraq and Afghanistan, including the murders and torture of innocent adults and children. In turn saving thousands of lives. For that he should be held up as an example of extraordinary journalism.
“Instead, for 12 years, he has been the target of a systematic medieval witch-hunt by the ruling elites, conspiring governments and their media mouthpieces. He has been the subject of persecution, character assassination, lies, psychological torture, medical neglect, spied upon whilst with his lawyers by the CIA, illegally removed from a place of asylum, held in solitary confinement, and subject to interminable show trials and hearings where he is prevented from communicating with his lawyers or giving evidence.
“As the horrifying reality of Assange’s extradition looms there has been an enormous groundswell of public support globally from groups and individuals alike. Calls for Assange’s release have deepened across all sections of the working and middle classes, who must now join forces and insist this extradition cannot take place.
“The ruling elites are acutely aware of the mobilisation and public support of Assange from the working class, who are outraged by his treatment. This is why a few political members have come forward to offer placating comments, but no action materialises, and the slow murderous silencing of Assange continues.
“We must let the ruling class know we will not tolerate this. Assange cannot be handed to his persecutors and assassins for five minutes; let alone 175 years. His life literally hangs on a knife’s edge. If he is extradited, it will set a precedent for the oppression of all dissenting voices. He has fought for the truth and now we must fight for him.
“We must mobilise, demand all charges are dropped once and for all, and that Assange is given unconditional freedom immediately. His life is in our hands.”
Gina, a student from Sydney and an SEP electoral member, wrote: “The crimes against Julian Assange by governments worldwide are a warning of the impending treatment to any individual who dares to expose the criminal secrets of governments.
“Julian Assange and WikiLeaks fought to ensure the lies and crimes of the ruling class were brought to light for the working class to see.
“Assange now faces life in prison or execution, all while experiencing serious illness. He has spent years on remand without any charges against him while being placed in a maximum-security prison!
“Fighting for Assange’s freedom means fighting for the objective truth which is something we should all be fighting for.”
David, a Queensland educator and SEP electoral member, wrote: “I denounce the vicious UK High Court judgment against Julian Assange, whose only ‘crime’ was to reveal US war crimes and foreign machinations. This judgment opens the way to his death sentence. We must call for massive demonstrations demanding Assange’s release. These would show the anger of the working class and the danger it poses to the ruling class if they don’t release their victim.
“No one should put any faith in Australian politicians of any party, from the deputy prime minister down. They will not do anything more than utter feeble calls for action by the Australian or British governments, calls which they know are useless.”