Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) Sydney branch secretary Paul McAleer gave the speech below at a July 16 rally in Sydney to support WikiLeaks and Julian Assange.
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Comrades and friends,
Congratulations to you all for your support of this important international rally for Julian Assange and WikiLeaks.
Thank you to the previous speakers for your contributions and thank you to the organisers for the opportunity to speak.
Assange should be questioned in relation to the sexual assault claims made against him, questioned in the United Kingdom, as he has given the Swedish authorities the ability to do so. They will not agree to this, because if they did it would shatter the myth that has been created to demonise Assange and divide his supporters.
Bradley Manning is a hero whose act of bravery allowed another generation of people a keen insight into the terrorist activities of the United States.
Julian Assange and the WikiLeaks platform is a symbol of truth against the lies and hypocrisy of the capitalist dictatorship.
This issue fundamentally is about democracy, real democracy. Not the fake democracy that is trumpeted about by Western governments, trying to hide their acts of barbarity against their own citizenry and crimes against humanity committed around the planet.
People are allowing their rights to be swallowed up in the false belief that their nation states will provide them the necessities of life, it is a lie that is too easily swallowed.
The reason for this is propaganda, information used to justify or manufacture support for an issue. Without WikiLeaks, without Assange, without the bravery of real journalists and not the fake corrupted journalists of most newspapers, we would not have the truth to dissect.
We would question why it is legal to blow a kids head off with the most technologically sophisticated of missiles and illegal to publish material which showcases the truth as to why that kid is now dead.
Assange created a platform not only for information about war crimes and Western government collaboration with corporations in smashing the rights of citizens, but also a platform where the mass media had to release the information that WikiLeaks and Assange provided for them. If they didn’t someone else would, and people would flock to alternative media agencies.
The appetite for knowledge in the news cycles made it necessary for the mass media to get the scoops out as quickly as possible, that is how Assange and WikiLeaks became so important and in the end so dangerous so quickly.
Information that would rarely be published suddenly became available, people became more sceptical about their governments, less trusting in the lies they were being sold and that is the crime of WikiLeaks and Assange in the eyes of the capitalist dictatorship.
Undermining criminal governments through the truth is a dangerous business. Activists the world over have suffered, been tortured, shot, brutalised and locked up for decades for having the audacity to question the corrupted lies of governments and corporations.
There has been and there are so many who have stood up for justice who find themselves imprisoned, who have been brutalised by police forces, whose job it is to protect them not smash them into the ground for telling the truth, for having the guts to stand up against gutlessness, against the acts of those that aren’t brave and are in fact criminals.
Those wondering why Assange has sought asylum in Ecuador should not be surprised by the fact that Ecuador is moving away from corporate media, something the West fears as a return to people’s media, a return to truth, a move away from 1984 style ownership of information and the hiding of truth.
When free media is that considered to be media owned by billionaires and not the people, Assange becomes essential to support. Do we support Assange?
When people exposing terrorist governments are jailed for exposing that truth, Assange becomes essential to support. Do we support Assange?
When corporate lies, corruption and theft are the enemy of the people Assange becomes essential to support. Do we support Assange?
When governments can collaborate with corporate plunderers against the interests of people through secret networks out of reach of the people, Assange becomes essential to support. Do we support Assange?
If we believe that Guantanamo should be free from scrutiny, if we believe that soldiers on whatever side who murder simply are mistakes free from scrutiny, missiles dropped onto the houses of innocents is just a price we all have to pay for democracy and justice then do nothing for Assange, WikiLeaks and Bradley Manning. Do we support Assange?
If the murder of truth, innocence and justice is something we believe is necessary in order for us to be free, then continue to turn a blind eye, and allow Assange, Manning and WikiLeaks to be marginalised and criminalised. Do we support Assange?
If you believe in truth, real democracy and justice then continue to rally for Assange, Manning and WikiLeaks until they are all held in the regard they deserve. Do we support Assange?
The hypocrisy that we are witness too is sickening. We have a US President given the Nobel Peace Prize who acts as a hitman, who has been Commander in Chief of an army that has continued wars of occupation and murder of hundreds of thousands of innocent people, and we have a soldier in Bradley Manning behind bars for releasing the truth.
When the truth becomes illegal and the truth becomes the enemy we are all in trouble. Each and every one of us. It is our duty to rise against this, it is our duty to defy and if acting illegally is necessary to secure justice, then let us all become outlaws.
If the union movement in this country believes in truth and democracy, then we must support Assange. If the people of this country value truth and democracy then we must as a duty and responsibility support Assange.
The threat to Assange is a real one. Bradley Manning is behind bars. Evidence has been produced that demonstrates that the US want to prosecute Assange.
Assange has been labelled a terrorist and WikiLeaks a terrorist organisation by American politicians. The capitalist dictatorship is without equal in its ability to contradict itself in the one sentence whilst looking the people in the eye and telling them they are telling the truth.
The capitalist dictatorship is the fabric that unites us all in economic slavery and political ignorance that allows for a society of the politically deaf, dumb and blind.
If any editor is to be jailed it should be those whose subservience to capitalism and warmongering is unquestionable, who allow their billionaire owners to brainwash the people through corrupted journalism and lack of holding the politicians accountable for a society racked by war, poverty and corporate corruption.
Political accountability is one of the only ways that the people can expose their leaders for the frauds that they are. WikiLeaks helped do this, WikiLeaks and Assange helped expose a world of criminal collaboration between governments and corporations. When it was in African countries, Assange was a hero and lauded so around the world, when he exposed the Americans he became a terrorist.
Being labelled a terrorist by the United States has become almost honourable if it wasn’t so dangerous for your health.
The strangulation of WikiLeaks has become accepted by the gullible and ignorant, much in the same way as the illegal blockade against Cuba. Just like the economic blockade against Cuba is trying to starve one of the bravest countries on earth, the blockade against WikiLeaks is trying to starve into extinction one of the bravest media organisations on earth.
Democracy is under attack in ways that we have rarely seen before, if true democracy is not fought for we end up with fascism. How far are we from this abomination. Those who fight in the streets against hostile governments are freedom fighters, those against friendly governments no matter their crimes are terrorists. Americans are maced in their faces for asking questions like why is my community poverty stricken yet corporations are making billions of dollars out of that poverty.
The criminalisation of truth is a weapon of all those whose corruption maintains their power. The coward media in this country must ask themselves whether turning a blind eye to a true journalists possible incarceration for exposing the truth is an attack on them all or not. The ones who answer no are simply the servants of criminal capitalist dictatorship.
We must always remember that Bradley Manning is still behind bars whilst we are free.