Julian Assange

The WikiLeaks Files: The World According to the US Empire
Verso, 2015
624 pages, hardback

George Orwell said: “In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”

These are dark times, in which the propaganda of deceit touches all our lives. It is as if political reality has been privatised and illusion legitimised.

The information age is a media age. We have politics by media; censorship by media; war by media; retribution by media; diversion by media — a surreal assembly line of clichés and false assumptions.

One of the epic miscarriages of justice of our time is unravelling. The United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention — an international tribunal that adjudicates and decides whether governments comply with their human rights obligations — has ruled that Julian Assange has been detained unlawfully by Britain and Sweden.

The siege of Knightsbridge is a farce. For two years, an exaggerated, costly police presence around the Ecuadorean embassy in London has served no purpose other than to flaunt the power of the state.

Their quarry is an Australian charged with no crime, a refugee from gross injustice whose only security is the room given to him by a brave South American country. His true crime is to have initiated a wave of truth-telling in an era of lies, cynicism and war.

The persecution of WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange must end. Even the British government clearly believes it must end.

Julian Assange will stay in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London as long as the United States government continues its case against him for his work on whistleblowing website Wikileaks, his lawyers said on March 19.

The recent development of the Swedish prosecutors agreeing to question Assange over two cases of sexual assault in 2010 within the embassy has led to speculation that he could leave the building, where he has taken refuge for over 1000 days, if the Swedish charges are dropped.

Assange, who has never been charged, has always denied the sexual assault allegations.

United States politics is witnessing a new sorry spectacle — and one with real consequences for Australia, as well as other nations on the Pacific rim.

US President Barack Obama is trying to drum up support from his party to implement the agenda of the huge corporations that sought to block his election and re-election via the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) “free trade” deal involving 12 Pacific rim nations.

The text of the proposed agreement and the negotiations have been kept secret, but key chapters have leaked and been published by WikiLeaks.

Julian Assange,‭ ‬founder and editor,‭ ‬of WikiLeaks had been a refugee in the Ecuadorian‭ ‬Embassy in London for three years as of June‭ ‬19.

The key issue in his extraordinary incarceration is justice.‭ ‬He has been charged with no crime.‭ ‬The first Swedish prosecutor dismissed the misconduct allegations regarding two women in Stockholm in‭ ‬2010.‭ ‬The second Swedish prosecutor's actions were and are demonstrably political.

Until recently,‭ ‬she refused to come to London to interview Assange‭ ‬-‭ ‬then she said she was coming.‭ ‬Then she cancelled her appointment.‭

WikiLeaks chose the the third anniversary of its founder’s stay in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London on June 19 to release thousands of cables about Saudi Arabia.

Among the revelations contained in the files, believed to have been leaked by a group calling itself the Yemen Cyber Army, are details about the country’s focus on its strategic rival, Iran, and the revolution in Egypt.

French president Francois Hollande called for an emergency meeting with his defence council on June 24, after WikiLeaks released documents showing the United States has been spying on all France's presidents since 2006.

“The French people have a right to know that their elected government is subject to hostile surveillance from a supposed ally,” said WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Alexa O'Brien has become known as a "one-woman court record system" for her extensive coverage of whistleblower Chelsea (formerly Bradley) Manning's trial. She has also covered the WikiLeaks release of US State Department Cables, the Guantanamo Files, the global "war on terror" and the Arab Spring.

This is an edited extract from a speech she gave to a public forum called “Defending Dissent: from Manning to Occupy” in Sydney on September 17. The full forum can be watched here.


Auckland Town Hall was packed to overflowing on September 15, with almost 2000 people. They heard US National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden present new evidence that the New Zealand government has been collaborating with US authorities to carry out wholesale surveillance and data collection on NZ citizens.


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