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The Forum > Article Comments > Julian Assange: the freedom of free speech > Comments

Julian Assange: the freedom of free speech : Comments

By Stuart Rees, published 7/6/2012

A lesson from the Assange controversy is what we may learn about the nature of justice.

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Some of the most important of human rights is the right to privacy; and the right to have a private conversation!
Those who would deny those same rights, are an increasingly brutal Russian administration, intolerant Chinese tyranny, equally intolerant Iranian theocracy, and cyber vigilantes like Assange?
The endlessly put excuse for resisting extradition to Sweden, is that he Assange might be deported to America to face espionage charges, which apparently carry a mandatory death sentence.
The excuse simply doesn't wash, because America has a much stronger extradition treaty with England, in comparison to Sweden.
Freedom of speech carries with it certain responsibilities, like verification of source material; and or, if any lives will be placed at real risk with publication.
Assange publish and be dammed approach simply ignored those very clearly established journalistic requirements/principles/legalities?
Other pieces, that can be promulgated are simply private if entirely unprovable opinion or opinion piece editorials.
Apparently, one can commit rape in a very liberal Sweden, if one refuses to withdraw and apply a condom before continuing?
If one fails to comply with this entirely reasonable request, consent is automatically withdrawn? Even in paid for sex?
This is apparently all that Assange is fighting so very hard to simply avoid facing, which some might assume carries with it, an inherent admission of, guilty as charged M'Lord/your Honour?
Rhrosty.
Posted by Rhrosty, Thursday, 7 June 2012 11:28:30 AM
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Rhrosty "Assange publish and be dammed approach simply ignored those very clearly established journalistic requirements/principles/legalities?"

Is Assange a Journalist? If not the point is mute.
Posted by Geoff of Perth, Thursday, 7 June 2012 1:55:53 PM
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Geoff of Perth. Apparently Assange allegedly claims said Journalistic Licence, which if claimed, clearly condemns any publish and be dammed approach?
Cheers, Rhrosty.
Posted by Rhrosty, Thursday, 7 June 2012 3:06:15 PM
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An excellent article. Stuart Rees says a lot with few words; he provides the historical context needed to understand what is at stake. It deserves a second reading and more than a momentís thought. But Bleichís position may be more complex and less disinterested than appears - Assangeís scepticism on this point is evident on Phillip Adamsí Late Night Live for June 6.
Posted by maxat, Thursday, 7 June 2012 3:27:05 PM
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When Bleich appears on the television, I turn it off.

His falseness and his attempt at portraying Americans as 'God's Children Too' I find offensive and duplicitous. That he runs a spy network from the American Embassy is common knowledge.

Yes, we should have freedom of speech but not the freedom to indoctrinate and manipulate in a foreign country!

http://dangerouscreation.com
Posted by David G, Thursday, 7 June 2012 4:45:41 PM
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I think the question of whether or not Assange is a credited journalist is a furphy, and represents the type of distraction one would expect from people that wish to avoid the real issues here.

Whistleblowing and the attempts to quell it, particularly out of the US. Assange's only crime is that of being a conduit for whistleblowers. Up till now at the very least his credibility remains intact . His authenticity and credibility have allowed so many whistle blowers opportunity to shed light on reality. In the US they call this espionage and make punishable by death.

Which brings me too the second paramount issue here that of Assange's status as an Australian citizen. The Govt has not made their position clear in regard to their intentions in these matters of liberty for Assange.

I for one, would never ever trust any Australian Govt ever again, that allowed Assange to by extradited too the US on charges of espionage. In addition I would like think that whistleblowers would have sanctuary in a democracy, and not be threatened by fear of execution.
Posted by thinker 2, Thursday, 7 June 2012 7:26:50 PM
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