Prominent American figures are openly calling for the assassination of WikiLeak's boss Julian Assange. The Australian government has yet to respond to these threats and outline how it intends to ensure Assange's safety who is an Australian citizen currently living overseas.
You know that matters are getting completely out of hand when public figures like former advisor to the Canadian Prime Minister, Tom Flanagan and Washington Times columnist Jeffrey Khuner in his article on Friday, are publically calling for the political murder of Julian Assange. "I think Assange should be assassinated, actually" Said Flanagan on the CBC News Network. "Assassinate Assange" reads Khuner's headline.
Given the upheaval caused in Washington by the latest round of material published by the WikiLeaks website, Assange who has yet to be charged with breaking any citable laws either here in Australia or the U.S, is at high risk of becoming another human rights abuse victim.
Under the Bush administration, Australian David Hicks was denied a court hearing for more than five years while he was held in legal and political limbo in Guantanamo Bay prison as an “enemy combatant”. It’s difficult not to draw parallels between Assange and Hicks. Given the current sentiment being expressed about him, clearly the potential for things to turn out very badly for the WikiLeaks boss is high.
One of the most disappointing but most telling things about this situation is the insight into the political animal which is the United States. It’s going on close to ten years that they have been harping on about protecting democratic rights, political freedoms, justice for all and all things apple pie. Apart from the unsurprising insight into the disdain harbored by some U.S diplomats towards their foreign counterparts, the lynch mob mentality displayed by Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee and other vocal enemies of Assange’s, reveals the blatant contempt for due process that feeds the U.S administration and subsequently its foreign policy. This has been the case since the Bush days, as the late U.S Senator Robert Byrd would no doubt have agreed.
Following Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s assertion that Assange’s publishing of leaked US diplomatic cables was “illegal”, in his letter to the Prime Minister on the 4th of December, Australian Supreme Court Solicitor Peter Kemp wrote:
“As a lawyer and citizen I find this most disturbing, particularly so when a brief perusal of the Commonwealth Criminal Code shows that... Julian Assange has almost certainly committed no crime under Australian law in relation to his involvement in Wikileaks”.
As an Australian citizen myself, I am ashamed by the lack of leadership shown by the Australian government in the handling of this matter. The PM and Attorney General McClelland both have been quick to wash their hands of Assange leaving his fate it would seem entirely in the hands of a foreign government.
At Parliament House On Monday 29th November in relation to how the government intended to handle the WikiLeaks matter given that Assange is still an Australian citizen, McClelland said:
“obviously Australia will support any law enforcement action that may be taken. The United States will be the lead government in that respect..”
It is beyond my comprehension how the Attorney General, a sworn Australian Public Servant, could make a statement so misaligned with his oath of loyalty to the Australian public. It is absurd that I must point out to the Attorney General it is the core duty of his post to uphold the Australian constitution and no other.
In the face of very public death threats against Assange by very public figures I would have thought this was the time for Australian leaders to speak up in support of the human rights of one of our own and take every step possible to ensure his humane and just treatment. Given America’s track record with its treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay and primarily with its failure to provide David Hicks with a fair and timely trial regarding the crimes he was accused of, McClelland’s comments are a betrayal not only of Assange but of the Australian people.
It was very heartening but also embarrassing, when Vancouver lawyer Gail Davidson came forward amidst all the outrageous commentary being flung about to file a written police complaint against Tom Flanagan as Flanagan had “counselled and/or incited the assassination of Julian Assange contrary to the Criminal Code of Canada".
Mrs Davidson’s courageous stance has inadvertently shone a floodlight on the inexcusable lack of action by Australian leaders to protect the rights of one of it's own citizens by insisting to have Assange processed through the Australian legal system in regards to WikiLeaks.
Written by Jim Morris
Freelance web designer and writer located in Sydney Australia
Read more: http://www.bukisa.com/articles/411738_calls-for-assanges-blood-australian-government-washes-hands#ixzz17WNQvqL8
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