Julian Assange Granted a Fleeting Reprieve from US Injustice

Free Julian-Assange

Julian Assange staves off extradition to US for now

For now, the valorous truth-teller Julian Assange has been granted a temporary stay from the remorseless clutches of American persecution. But make no mistake – this latest legal deferral is the flimsiest of reprieves in the face of an unrelenting, vindictive campaign by the US imperium to crush an embarrassing avatar of journalistic accountability.

Almost five harrowing years have now been endured by Assange in the dank confines of Britain’s Guantanamo – the notorious Belmarsh prison gulag. Torn from his young family and entombed in a concrete vault, his Orwellian “crime” was to dare unveil the war crimes and manifold deceits of US foreign policy to the world through the bravery of WikiLeaks.

For this defiant commitment to transparency, this abiding faith in sunlight as the greatest disinfectant, Assange has been persecuted, smeared and dehumanized by the American state in a grotesque spectacle of authoritarianism unbecoming of any nation boasting civilized values.

Now, a British court has temporarily stepped in to halt the sordid extradition pantomime – the better to wring more procedural “assurances” from Washington over Assange’s constitutional rights and immunity from lethal reprisals upon arrival on American soil. A three-week stay has been cynically granted while this fatuous charade plays out.

What to know about the High Court’s judgement

  • Assange will not be extradited immediately.
  • The UK High Court has given the US additional time to give “satisfactory assurances”, namely that Assange will face a fair trial and that his extradition will not amount to a death sentence.
  • If the US does not provide these guarantees within the set time frame, the leave to appeal will be granted.
  • In this case, there will be a new hearing on May 20.
  • Therefore Assange faces a further wait to find out whether his final UK bid to appeal over his extradition to the US can go ahead at the High Court.

Let us be clear – this is mere judicial theatre designed to obscure the bitter truth that a firm American ally has already shown itself to be little more than a vassal accomplice to egregious human rights abuses and suppression of basic press freedoms. Far from some morally upstanding arbiter of Assange’s fate, the British establishment has already shown where its true allegiance lies through its cruel, punitive detention of Assange all these years.

They cannot credibly promise fair treatment or constitutional protections to a prisoner already being psychologically and physically broken on the rack of prolonged solitary confinement. What use are “First Amendment safeguards” to one who has already suffered the most degrading privations at the hands of his UK overseers?

This case lays bare the putrid hypocrisy and capricious malice at the heart of Western liberal democracies when their criminality is boldly unmasked. Assange’s “crime” was to hold up a mirror to the global hegemon and reflect back its naked aggression, deceptions and war crimes for all to behold. In doing so, he committed the ultimate sin – revealing the lies and brutal self-interest underpinning the imperial mission.

For this, he has been made to suffer a Promethean martyrdom, a warning to any who would dare challenge the ruling Western orthodoxies through ethical, adversarial journalism. Assange’s treatment is nothing less than an assault upon the Fourth Estate itself – one which must be fiercely resisted lest further truth-tellers find themselves sacrificed upon the altar of manufactured consent.

So let us dispense with these meaningless legalistic sideshows and demand Julian Assange’s immediate release – anything less is to be branded a craven accomplice to institutionalised tyranny. For too long this heroic figure has languished, persecuted for upholding the highest ideals of a free press in service of peace and human rights. If our nations cannot summon the moral courage to defend such a stalwart, then they are nought but vacant husks – self-proclaimed democracies in name only.


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