Australian authorities reacted to the latest UK legal strike against Assange with silence

Monday’s statement from Britain’s Supreme Court – to refuse to hear an appeal from Julian Assange against his extradition to the US has passed with almost no mention in Australia’s political establishment, or for that matter in state-owned media.

As far as the press has reported on the case, detentions outside detention in the UK and threats of life imprisonment against Australian citizens and journalists in the US are treated as petty news. The relentless persecution of Assange has normalized, if not completely buried.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange greets supporters from the balcony of the Ecuadorian embassy in London. [Foto: AP Photo/Frank Augstein, arkiv]

The state-funded broadcaster Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and most corporate news channels only publish brief agency reports on court decisions. Where they barely concealed their solidarity with the US-led effort to destroy Assange, the report stated that US prosecutors charged him for “publishing a large number of classified US military histories and diplomatic cables, which they say have put lives at risk.”

It did not mention that the diplomatic wires revealed historical war crimes, including the killing of thousands of civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan. The fact that the United States’ claim that Assange is “a life threatening” has never been supported by a shred of evidence. The official media, such as the CIA and the US Department of Justice, present standard journalism, critical of the United States and its allies such as Australia, as illegitimate and criminal.

The weak response to the Supreme Court’s decision is all the more striking because of its far-reaching implications for the Assange case. Supreme Court judges refused to hear the appeal, despite the fact that the lower court’s High Court earlier this year accepted that Assange had a “debatable legal point”.

The Supreme Court decision excludes any defense of extradition on the grounds of Assange’s poor health, stemming from a decade of persecution. The district court – the Magistrates’ Court – blocked his extradition in January 2021, arguing that Assange might die in US custody. This ruling was overturned by the High Court, based on worthless US diplomatic guarantees. And now the UK Supreme Court is refusing to hear an appeal against the decision from the High Court.

Assange’s only remaining ways in the British justice system are to seek a pardon from Home Secretary Priti Patel, from a government that fully supports extradition, and to appeal the substantial political points in the case, which it ruled in favor of the United States in court. first trial in the District Court. These points include the political nature of the prosecution, its violation of the Anglo-American extradition treaty, and its character as a frontal attack on press freedom.

Given Assange’s entire treatment history, the prospects for such an appeal are dire. In other words, he was closer to being sent to the pages of hell that was America’s prison for the rest of his life, than he was before.

Nonetheless, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has not said a word, nor has opposition Labor leader Anthony Albanese. The two major parties have collaborated on the US campaign to destroy Assange and WikiLeaks, and have rejected demands that they use their diplomatic and political powers to ensure Assange’s freedom.

Elena Eland

"Web specialist. Incurable twitteraholic. Explorer. Organizer. Internet nerd. Avid student."

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.