Yesterday we woke up to the terrible news: at the behest of the U.S, the U.K. has taken Wikileaks founder Julian Assange into custody and any day now may extradite him to the U.S. to stand trial for the “crime” of truth-telling.
Wikileaks burst onto the scene in 2007 with the release of the “standard operating procedures” (a.k.a. torture) taking place at Guantanamo Bay prison camp. They followed that up by exposing the secret drone strikes, civilian casualties, and war crimes the U.S. military was committing in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Yemen.
The fate of Julian Assange is now in the hands of the United Kingdom. Will you join us in asking British Prime Minister Theresa May to use her influence as prime minister to tell the U.K. court not to extradite Julian and to release him immediately?
Freedom of the press is perhaps the most essential feature of a democracy and it under siege. Between the arrest of Assange, reimprisonment of whistleblower Chelsea Manning, and persecution of other whistleblowers and journalists — we are in real and immediate danger of losing our cherished First Amendment.
The U.S. government says Julian is charged with hacking computers. But make no mistake about it: his actual crime is having exposed vital information the U.S. wanted to keep secret.
In 2010, Wikileaks exposed Saudi requests for the U.S. to “cut off the head of the [Iranian] snake. ” In 2011 they revealed conversations between Israel and the U.S. in which Israel admitted “we don’t do Gandhi very well” — meaning non-violence is not part of their playbook.
Upon Julian’s arrest, U.K. Labor party leader Jeremy Corbyn tweeted: “The extradition of Julian Assange to the U.S. for exposing evidence of atrocities in Iraq and Afghanistan should be opposed by the British government.” We agree and are calling on Prime Minister Theresa May: Don’t extradite Julian Assange. Release him immediately and ensure his safe passage home to Australia.
In solidarity with Julian, Chelsea, and all the other journalists and whistleblowers being persecuted.
Ann, Ariel, Carley, Caroline, Jodie, Kelly, Kelsey, Kirsten, Lily, Maya, Mark, Medea, Nancy, Paki, Ryan, Sarah, Tighe, Ursula and Zena