Naming Anna Ardin on Newsnight

by craig on August 21, 2012 2:31 am in Uncategorized

Anna Ardin herself went to the media, under her own name, as long as two years ago to publicise her allegations against Assange. From the New York Times, 25 August 2010:

Anna Ardin, 31, has told the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet that the complaints were “not orchestrated by the Pentagon” but prompted by “a man who has a twisted attitude toward women and a problem taking no for an answer.”

The furore that I “revealed” her name on Newsnight is a pathetic spasm of false indignation by establishment supporters.

A google search on “Anna Ardin” reveals 193,000 articles, virtually all relating to her sexual allegation against Julian Assange. The Australian Broadcasting Corporation last week broadcast nationwide a documentary investigating Ms Ardin’s allegations and not only naming her repeatedly, but showing several photographs of her and Assange together; it is a documentary everybody interested should watch. Literally thousands of newspapers and magazines all over the world have named her, including the New York Times and the Times of India, aside from those near 200,000 internet entries. The Twittersphere numbers are astronomical.

Gavin Esler, Joan Smith and I all knew her name – what special rights do we three enjoy that entitle us to know that, but would intend to debar the viewers from knowing that? I am willing to bet that virtually all those tweeting and pretending outrage that I named Ms Ardin, already themselves knew her name. They just somehow think nobody else should be allowed to. There is virtually nobody in Sweden – which is after all where she lives – who does not know her name. It is a cause celebre there.

If what I did was illegal, as is being claimed, then somebody had better come and arrest me. As however there are no legal proceedings on this issue in the UK and no prospect of a prosecution here, I know of no lawful reason I should not have named her. I suspect that the number of Newsnight viewers who heard the name for the first time is very small indeed. It might, of course, give some a tool to research further for themselves the facts of the case. That would be very useful indeed.

As for the interview, I was sorry that Aaronovitch was not there (as I had been told he would be) as I might have been more robust – I felt rather constrained arguing with Joan Smith as I generally like and respect her. Strangely enough, as I did the interview I was much less worried about it than I was on subsequently hearing it, because I did not realise the extent my microphone had been turned down compared to Gavin’s and Joan’s when they were speaking across me – which was most of the time I was speaking. It would be interesting if someone with the patience could tot up how many seconds I had speaking with nobody speaking over me, compared to Joan.

To sum up, I was insufficiently assertive and allowed myself to be shouted down, than which I really should know better. But I did succeed in getting over the fact, with examples, that whistleblowers are routinely fitted up with unrelated charges. And all the manufactured fury at my naming Anna Ardin might well lead people to research her claims and behaviour, which would be a good thing. So I am reasonably relaxed.

UPDATE

I have just found the transcript of the Australian Broadcasting Company’s documentary on the Ardin claims against Assange. This is genuine and painstaking investigative journalism from the flagship and long-established “Four corners” programme and shows a glaring contrast between the British and Australian Broadcasting Company approach. The BBC won’t even allow you to mention Ardin’s name, let alone question her story or her motives. The ABC does a full investigation and comes up with some extremely important facts.

It is also interesting that ABC interview Ardin’s own lawyer, as well as Assange’s, and neither shows any concern at the repeated use of Ardin’s name in the interview, of a piece with the fact that it has frequently appeared in the Swedish media.

The documentary is entitled “Sex, Lies and Julian Assange.” This extract starts about twenty minutes in. Click on the title for the full thing. Another interviewee, politician Rick Falkvinge, is obviously extremely conscious of what he may and may not say legally while extradition proceedings are in train, but again appears to have no problem with the interviewer using Anna Ardin’s name.

What is such a big issue for the BBC, and the politically correct media twitterers of London, is apparently not an issue for those in Sweden most closely connected to the case.

ANDREW FOWLER: At the heart of the matter is whether the Swedish judicial authorities will treat him fairly. Certainly, events so far provide a disturbing picture of Swedish justice. Using facts agreed between the defence and prosecution and other verified information, we have pieced together what happened during those crucial three weeks in August.

On August 11th, 2010, Assange arrived in Sweden to attend a conference organised by the Swedish Brotherhood – a branch of the Social Democratic Party. He was offered Anna Ardin’s apartment while she was away, but Ardin returned home a day early on Friday the 13th. She invited Assange to stay the night, and they had sex. She would later tell police Assange had violently pinned her down and ignored her requests to use a condom. Assange denies this.

The following day, Assange addressed the conference with Ardin at his side. Later that afternoon Ardin organised the Swedish equivalent of a top-notch barbeque – a Crayfish Party. She posted a Twitter message. “Julian wants to go to a crayfish party. Anyone have a couple of available seats tonight or tomorrow?”

The crayfish party was held that night in a court yard off her apartment. It went on until the early hours of the morning. Ardin tweeted at 2am: “Sitting outdoors at 02:00 and hardly freezing with the world’s coolest, smartest people! It’s amazing!”

A guest at the party would later tell Swedish Police the event was a very hearty evening. When he offered to put Assange up at his apartment, Ardin replied, “He can stay with me.”

In the past 24 hours, Ardin had worked closely with Assange, had sex with him, organised a crayfish party on his behalf – and, according to one witness, turned down alternate accommodation for him. It is during this same period that police will later investigate whether Assange coerced and sexually molested Anna Ardin.

PER E. SAMUELSON: Well, if you send text messages like that, “I’ve just spent some time with the coolest people in the world”, the night after you then say you were raped – I mean you shouldn’t write such text messages if you had been raped by that person the night before.

ANDREW FOWLER: Your client described Julian Assange as a “cool man”. I think, one of the “coolest men in the world” that she’d had in her bed.

CLAES BORGSTROM: I will argue in court. I have of course arguments concerning exactly what you’re talking about now, but I will not tell any media of how I am going to represent the women in in court. I’m sorry.

ANDREW FOWLER: But can you see how that looks as though…

CLAES BORGSTROM: Yes, of course I can.

ANDREW FOWLER: …it’s a fit up. It looks as though they are in fact setting him up.

CLAES BORGSTROM: I’m quite aware of that.

ANDREW FOWLER: Sunday August 15th – the next day. Assange attended a dinner party at Stockholm’s Glenfiddich restaurant, organised by pirate party founder Rick Falkvinge.

RICK FALKVINGE: I think a lot of people at the… at the table had meatballs. I think Julian might have been one of them. Now, Swedish meatballs that, that’s a little bit like mum’s apple pie in Sweden – as in, you can call my wife ugly, you can kick my dog, but the instant you say something bad about my mother’s meatballs I’m going to take it personal.

ANDREW FOWLER: Also at the dinner was Anna Ardin.

(to Rick Falkvinge) So, just to get this straight: Julian Assange arrived with Anna Ardin and he left with Anna Ardin.

RICK FALKVINGE: Yep.

ANDREW FOWLER: What was their behaviour like towards each other?

RICK FALKVINGE: Well, I was discussing mainly with Julian and the… again I can’t go into too much detail here, but it was at least a very professional dinner. There were two high level organisations, both intent on changing the world behaving professionally.

ANDREW FOWLER: The fact that Anna Ardin accompanied Julian Assange through this dinner and left with him – what does that say to you?

RICK FALKVINGE: Well that’s going into speculating on merits of extradition, and I can’t really do that. I think that be… you’re presenting an objective fact, as did I, and if people want to read something into that that’s obviously ripe for doing so, but I can’t spell it out.

ANDREW FOWLER: Four Corners has obtained a photograph, lodged with police investigators, from that evening. Anna Ardin is on the left. Afterwards, Assange would again spend the night at her apartment.

The following day, August the 16th, Assange had sex with Sophia Wilen at her apartment. According to police records, Ardin was aware that he had slept with Sophia. A witness told police he contacted Anna Ardin looking for Assange. She texted back: “He’s not here. He’s planned to have sex with the cashmere girl every evening, but not made it. Maybe he finally found time yesterday?” That same day, the witness asked Ardin, “Is it cool he’s living there? Do you want, like, for me to fix something else?” According to the witness she replied: “He doesn’t, like, sleep at nights so that’s a bit difficult. So he has a bit of difficulty taking care of his hygiene. But it’s ok if he lives with me, it’s no problem.”

Three days later on August 20th, Wilen, accompanied by Ardin went to the Klara police station in central Stockholm to seek advice about whether Assange could be forced to take an STD test. Ardin had gone along primarily to support Wilen. Sometime during Wilen’s questioning the police announced to Ardin and Wilen that Assange was to be arrested and questioned about possible rape and molestation. Wilen became so distraught she refused to give any more testimony and refused to sign what had been taken down.

JENNIFER ROBINSON: The circumstances leading up to the issue of the arrest warrant gave cause for grave concern for Julian about the procedures that were adopted in the investigation. We have to remember that when the announcement was put out that he would be subject to a warrant, one of the complainants was upset by that, and later said that she felt railroaded by the police.

KARIN ROSANDER, SWEDISH PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE: Well what happened is what was that the duty prosecutor got a phone call from the police and the duty prosecutor decided that he should be arrested.

ANDREW FOWLER: And what happened?

KARIN ROSANDER: He was arrested in his absence, but he… they never got in… got in contact with him so, but he was arrested in his absence. It’s a technical… technical thing in Sweden, Swedish law, yeah.

ANDREW FOWLER: The Prosecutor’s Office might not have contacted Assange but within hours they let the whole of Sweden know what was going on – leaking to the Expressen Tabloid the statements of Ardin and Wilen. The newspaper front page read: “Assange hunted for rape in Sweden”.

JENNIFER ROBINSON: Julian wakes up the following morning to read the newspapers to hear that he’s wanted for double rape and he’s absolutely shocked.

THOMAS MATTSSON: Two of our reporters had information about Julian Assange, and we also had a confirmation from the prosecutor which confirmed on record that there was a police investigation against Julian Assange.

ANDREW FOWLER: It was now the case took a strange twist. Within 24 hours, a more senior prosecutor dismissed the rape allegations, leaving only the lesser accusation of molestation. Assange willingly went to the police on August 30th and made a statement.

During the interview he expressed his fears that anything he said would end up in the tabloid newspaper Expressen. The interviewing police officer said: “I’m not going to leak anything.” The interview was leaked.

PER E. SAMUELSON: Why did you leak his name to a tabloid paper? How… how can you drop the case and reopen the case and how can you… how can you not say that he waited for five weeks in Sweden voluntarily to participate in the investigation? Why do you have to arrest him? Why do you have to keep him in handcuffs? Why can’t you conduct this in a proper manner? The rest of the world sees it, but Sweden unfortunately doesn’t.

ANDREW FOWLER: It is perhaps understandable that Assange had doubts he would receive fair treatment from the Swedish authorities. On September 15th, the prosecutor told Assange he was permitted to leave Sweden. Assange, back in England, would later offer to return within a month. The Swedish Authorities said too late – a second warrant had already been issued for his arrest.

ANDREW FOWLER: He says that he left the country and then was prepared to come back at any time. Is that your understanding?

CLAES BORGSTROM: I don’t believe that.

ANDREW FOWLER: He says that he was prepared to come back in October but the prosecutor wanted him back earlier.

CLAES BORGSTROM: I don’t know. I don’t believe he wanted to he was he wanted to come freely back to Sweden. I don’t think so.

ANDREW FOWLER: Can you understand that the Australian people may not understand how somebody can be accused in their absence when they haven’t even been interviewed, then have that rape case dropped, the arrest warrant removed and then have it re-instituted, all in the space of a few days?

KARIN ROSANDER: Yeah I can very well understand the confusion and, and, I… that is very difficult to understand, well, exactly how it works.

ANDREW FOWLER: Well you call it confusing, it’s… it may be slightly more than that.

KARIN ROSANDER: Well that’s the way it works here in Sweden so, well… but I can understand the confusion, definitely

.

Tweet this post

183 Comments

  1. Ben Franklin

    21 Aug, 2012 - 2:46 am

    The duration of the interview was what, 7 minutes and change? It should be obvious to anyone that the subject matter should cover 10 or 11 minutes. (heh)

    Is there any doubt the Meedia has no interest in the facts, just the sensationalism.

    Give the People what they want; American idol. Just enough to titillate.

  2. With due respect, Craig: your defence can be summed up as, others have named her, so what’s the big deal if I followed? I am not going to question your motives, but defending what you did – and adducing the excuse that her name’s widely known – is truly appalling. You had absolutely no right to name her. I did not know her name – and I have reported from Belarus about Assange. I was prepared to overlook it when you uttered her name: a slip of the tongue, perhaps. But to see you defend it – to see you, in effect, hold her culpable – is deeply disappointing. There’s no grand conspiracy against you here. You should just apologise.

  3. The difference is that you were on Newsnight on a significant UK TV station.

    Total wrong, I’m horrified you’re still defending your stupidity.

    Issue a serious apology asap

  4. Don’t worry about it Craig.People are not nearly as foolish as these little media-mafias think they are.It doesn’t matter if you tot up sentence numbers or relative decibel differentials the people are wise to the score.Today we witnessed The Grauniad and Newsnight looking like the pathetic propagandist fools that they are.Their lack of depth,balance and integrity is but another step in their inevtiable self-caused obsolescence.They have become a pardoy,a joke to any halfway intelligent citizen.

  5. Ben Franklin

    21 Aug, 2012 - 3:02 am

    “With due respect, Craig: your defence can be summed up as, others have named her, so what’s the big deal if I followed? I am not going to question your motives, but defending what you did – and adducing the excuse that her name’s widely known – is truly appalling. You had absolutely no right to name her. I did not know her name – and I have reported from Belarus about Assange. I was prepared to overlook it when you uttered her name: a slip of the tongue, perhaps. But to see you defend it – to see you, in effect, hold her culpable – is deeply disappointing. There’s no grand conspiracy against you here. You should just apologise.”

    Sorry. I don’t get it. Ardin is now a public figure, but it wasn’t Craig who outed her. Your squeamish regard for her privacy is admirable, in the vacuum of innocence, but out of place in this case.

  6. Andy

    The difference to what? The Australian Broadcasting Corporation is not significant? Nor the New York Times, nor the Times of India? Was it, incidentally, the first time you yourself had seen the name? I should be most surprised – please answer that, I am not being rhetorical.

    The problem is you believe a genuine judicial process is going on, and normal rules should be followed. I believe this is a stitch-up, there is no impartial process and we have to break normal rules to prevent an innocent man being framed.

  7. KK,

    “With due respect, Craig: your defence can be summed up as, others have named her, so what’s the big deal if I followed? I am not going to question your motives, but defending what you did – and adducing the excuse that her name’s widely known – is truly appalling. You had absolutely no right to name her. I did not know her name – and I have reported from Belarus about Assange. I was prepared to overlook it when you uttered her name: a slip of the tongue, perhaps. But to see you defend it – to see you, in effect, hold her culpable – is deeply disappointing. There’s no grand conspiracy against you here. You should just apologise.2

    So silly.Get a grip KK.Any monkey with a Google search could find her name in 5 seconds.Stop playing the disingenuous fool.The cat’s been out the bag for a long time.Get real and stop being so prissy.

  8. Leonard Young

    21 Aug, 2012 - 3:07 am

    I thought you were being deliberately measured Craig, in order not to appear sensational or too emotional. I thought that was a good approach until Esler began interrupting you and “putting you on edge”. I think you have no need to chide yourself at all. What came over to the viewer – any viewer – was that you were making reasonable points and were hardly allowed to get a word in edgeways.

    Joan Smith was equally dishonest since she knows perfectly well the background to the case.

    I was fuming with Esler. He must have known that since the case was actually not sub-judice in any sense that would be applicable to the UK, and the fact that Ardin’s name had been discussed on Australian TV and all over the ‘net in addition to the Swedish defence AND prosecuting team having also acknowledged the name when mentioned by interviewers for various broadcasters, he was censoring you on an entirely spurious point.

    By the way I thought your Speech outside the Embassy was brilliant. Chin up!

  9. Andy,

    You’re fucking joking right? Or at least i hope you are.Her name’s been all over the datasphere for many months.Stop playing the Outraged Of Oswestry card and get with the multi-dimensional reality of the information age.

  10. Whooo saaid Jehovaah?

  11. Thatcrab.

    “Whooo saaid Jehovaah?”

    You did and it made no fucking sense whatsoever.I guess it’s pub closing time somewhere in the world.

  12. Jives

    I got thatcrab’s Jehovah bit. It’s Life of Brian and quite funny.

  13. kaam daown kaam daown, dats just wat et wus liek

  14. Leonard Young

    21 Aug, 2012 - 3:23 am

    KK: “I did not know her name – and I have reported from Belarus about Assange. I was prepared to overlook it when you uttered her name: a slip of the tongue, perhaps. But to see you defend it – to see you, in effect, hold her culpable – is deeply disappointing.”

    What? You are a journalist who has reported on this and you DIDN’T know the woman’s name? What else “didn’t you know” that half the world does, and you call yourself a reporter?

  15. alan campbell

    21 Aug, 2012 - 3:23 am

    Ah, the old “my microphone was turned down” ploy. Oh dear. It probably would have been better for you if it had been switched off.

    How WikiLeaks Blew It
    The sad downfall of Julian Assange and his empire of secrets.

    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/08/16/how_wikileaks_blew_it?page=full

  16. Thatcrab and Craig,

    Sincere apologies chaps,aint seen the movie.It’s just that there’s been so many bampots on here lately i assumed another random troll.

  17. Still taking the corroding coin Alan i see? It’ll never be enough to cover what you’ve lost.

  18. np Jives
    Yay! if i did nothin else for once Craig got me!

    It was right to stick there too, it drew out the farce – if ever it needs to be on BBC Newsnight.

  19. Thanks Thatcrab :.)

    Spot on about Newsnight.

  20. Jives? never seen.. the Life of Brian?
    you need to schedule some classic time.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SYkbqzWVHZI

  21. Andy wrote: “The difference is that you were on Newsnight on a significant UK TV station.Total wrong, I’m horrified you’re still defending your stupidity.
    Issue a serious apology asap”

    Andy, Newsnight and British state tv has descended into a comical farce. Regardless of the ins and outs of this case,they have absolutely no moral or ethical ground left to stand on whatsoever. They very well know this and are running scared,as they should be, because they have no legitimacy left from which to defend or attack any moral position.A spotty 15 year old teenager on a cheap laptop in his bedroom in Oswestry has as much if not more moral authority than these corrupted people

  22. Thatcrab,

    Yeah i’ve seen bits of it never the entirety.I feel obliged now to watch it all thus to atone for my earlier ignorance :.)

  23. I thought Craig’s performance was so measured and understated that he exposed the emotive agenda of both Smith and Esler. Yet he also managed to plant a PR bomb. This furore over his name-dropping will give the story wings throughout the blogosphere and even the mainstream meeja. Which is no bad thing. It was entirely lawful – at most he perhaps infringed a politicised internal embargo at the Beeb. Yet the bleating and spinning of right-wing bloggers and editors will turn the spotlight onto Craig Murray, which will attract more casual readers to this very blog. Craig can then set out the hyperinanity of the stitch-up in his usual cogent manner. Accordingly, the next blog entries should be phrased with care and packed with potent myth-busters for maximum impact. It’s a fair bet they’ll start to propagate one way or another.

  24. ‘And all the manufactured fury’ ‘might well lead people to research’

    It is, indeed, all ‘grist to the mill’ of the uncovering of Truth, which, being more nuanced than can possibly emerge in any combative (and stupidly brief) ‘debate’, inevitably and necessarily spills and is teased out in chaotic ways.

    EVERYTHING which keeps Julian, WikiLeaks, this case, in the public eye and debate is a further safeguard (amongst other things of Julian himself), a further step away from that dangerous lack of public scrutiny that the powers that be rely on, and takes us further away from that burying of the huge issues which are the whole backdrop and context.

    It is almost impossible for injustice and lies (especially in ‘high places’) to be exposed, without there being an ‘incarnation’ of the effects of them in someone’s life – and this, as well as the revelations they bring us, is what whistleblowers flesh out for us.

    They become iconic to the issues they confront in their own suffering, and this doubles what they do for us and the effects of their truth telling. This is so in CRAIG’S life and travails which have served to bring horrific and endemic injustice to the attention of many, AND WHICH GO ON DOING SO.

    Likewise the far reaching revelations of the Afghan and Iraq War Logs, the Collateral Murder video, the State Dept Cables etc continue to reverberate and are opened up to more and more people through the PROTRACTED travails of BRADLEY MANNING and JULIAN ASSANGE.

    It all TAKES TIME, and we wouldn’t remember a thing if it didn’t…

  25. Jonangus Mackay

    21 Aug, 2012 - 3:50 am

    V. good point, Nextus.

  26. From the ‘Sketch’ Andy McSmith – the Independent

    ‘what CANNOT BE DISPUTED (!) is that two women who trusted and admired him enough to go to bed with him were put through experiences horrible enough to cause them to complain to the authorities.’ my caps and (!)

    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/the-sketch-he-tried-to-appear-churchillian-but-ended-up-more-john-inmanian-8061661.html

    don’t think anyone’s taking sub-judice very seriously in this case…

  27. Jonangus Mackay

    21 Aug, 2012 - 4:34 am

    ‘Assange is like a soldier. This is a war’—Swedish journalist Helene Bergman (recorded before asylum was granted) http://bit.ly/ShaZTs

  28. What is inexcusable is the conspiracy to conceal the name of the woman, clearly a CIA freelance asset if not a salaried agent, who is providing this veneer of pseudo legality to the campaign to punish Assange.
    This woman consorts with fascists and cooperates with the US government, acting as a provocateur, in its blockade of Cuba. She works with terrorists responsible for the killing of air line passengers, hotel employees and tourists. And she has been paid for such work.
    How can her role in the current nonsense be credible to sensible, informed people? Who can doubt that she is acting dishonestly, insincerely? And that in doing so she does immense damage to real victims of rape?
    Far from being a “victim” or possibly a victim, she is clearly culpable of being an accomplice in crimes the victims of which would regard, if they are still alive, her claims of having been abused as outlandish and disingenuous.

  29. @KK: What I saw as truly appaling: a brutish mob reaction of moral
    panicky outrage and character assassination directed at Craig Murray,
    not without some shepherding from some who should know better *and* know
    better [ e.g.,
    https://twitter.com/jamesrbuk/status/237670310294462464 ].

    Given the context, @KK, this is an utterly void “moral” issue
    where even the “excuse” label reeks of hypocrisy and intellectual
    dishonesty. Is Newsnight supposed to be an entertainment show for
    some isolated high security penal colony? Is TV discourse in a journalistic context supposed to be
    ‘properly’ insulated from reality (and vice-versa) by mindlessly following, a la lettre,
    arbitrary rules picked up in some fashionable new Debrett’s guide? Or is there still hope
    for common sense and a no-nonsense code of ethics?

    Is it so hard to understand that something which is a valid
    concern in other contexts is in this case nothing more than a pretext
    for fingerpointing? Is it, by the way, hard to understand why it is
    so *regardless* of any opinions one may have on the facts and on the
    women involved? If not, is this then yet another instance of the rise
    of the newfangled “right not to be offended”?

    With due respect and the benefit of doubt, @KK, it’s somewhat
    surprising that someone who has “reported about Assange” is seeing the
    name “Anna Ardin” for the first time. Not surprising though, for
    those whose world views are mostly based on a TV diet. Not surprising
    they’re also unaware of how Craig Murray has been denouncing murder,
    mutilation and, yes, rape — many victims of which may remain
    adequately anonymous forever, while many of the guilty pose for
    posterity in events of perfect etiquette and political correction.

    Being an outsider, there’s of course the chance that I’m simply out of
    touch with the current moral values of Britannia. Time to buy one of
    those Debrett’s guides, I suppose. Or just stick to the BBC.

  30. It’s worth mentioning that Anna Ardin is not an alleged rape victim. The only allegation of rape pertains to the other complainant, SW – who refused to sign the police report after she realized that her attempt to compel Assange to take an STD test was being interpreted as a rape complaint by the police,

    All of the allegations having to do with Ardin are sexual misconduct allegations.

  31. ‘The problem is you believe a genuine judicial process is going on, and normal rules should be followed. I believe this is a stitch-up, there is no impartial process and we have to break normal rules to prevent an innocent man being framed.’

    With all due respect I don’t think it’s your place to judge wether or not these women are lying. Every woman who comes forward about a sexual assult deserves to be taken seriously at least until it’s proven otherwise. I do think that society as a whole already has a fairly poor view on womens sexual rights. And you dimissing the ediquette for formal proceedings gives an impression that these rights only exsist for some when you choose to grant them. A very poor show indeed.

  32. Jonangus Mackay

    21 Aug, 2012 - 5:12 am

    Oliver Stone & Michael Moore write in the New York Times: ‘It’s the UK & Swedish governments that stand in the way of an investigation, not Assange’:
    http://nyti.ms/PsveLX

  33. Craig,

    I would just like to chime in that you are 100% correct.

    The people who make an issue of this are hypocrites and concern trolls. They cannot win the argument on their own methods so they resort to under the belt tactics.

  34. Sarah, you speak about ‘dimissing the ediquette for formal proceedings’. There was no etiquette from the beginning.

    When Ardin and Wilen went to the police, on duty was officer Irmeli Krans, a political acquaintance of Ardin’s — a fellow Social Democrat, fellow member of the party’s LGBT network, and fellow candidate in the Stockholm City Council elections. Krans should have excused herself from involvement in the case. Instead she interviewed Wilen. Ardin did not give a full statement that day. However, some brief remarks she made would used to add two accusations of misdemeanour “ofredande” (annoyance) to subsequent accusations. Ardin departed the station.

    Towards the end of her 90-minute interview, after being informed that a r-pe investigation had been opened against Assange, Wilen broke down, claimed (this is recorded in the police report) that she never wanted to report the incident as r-pe but had been “influenced by the police and people around her”, and refused to sign the police report.

    On Saturday afternoon the next day, Ardin was interviewed by police — once again basic protocol was broken, and the interview was conducted by phone, and no transcript recorded. By now, Eva Finne, the Stockholm chief prosecutor had called the case in, after reading the leaked report of it in the right-wing Expressen newspaper.

    The previous night Ardin had given an interview to a media contact at Aftonbladet newspaper — without Wilen.

    In the two weeks following the appeal of the prosecution, Ardin removes two tweets from her twitter feed, which demonstrate an ongoing relationship with Assange in the days following the August 13 s-xual encounter which forms the basis of her complaint . Later, Ardin deletes a post from her blog, a nine-step guide to revenge on cheating ex-lovers adapted from a popular US blog meme.

    More than a week after the allegedly coercive s-xual encounter, Ardin supplies a condom to the police, with a cut/tear at the tip, claiming it is one that Assange tore off during their s-xual encounter. Forensic examination contained in the police report cannot conclusively determine the nature of the cut/tear. No DNA is found on the condom.

    From: crikey.com.au/2012/04/20/rundle-pursuit-of-assange-a-product-of-fraught-swedish-s-x-crime-politics/

  35. Have nothing more to do with the bastards at the BBC. It was almost a set up. You were p;aced on the outside and then the sound quality difference. I thought she was extremely cocksure and was allowed to hold forth and thus dominate. Esler’s face was a picture when he seized on the Ardin name with Smith. Pure aggression and vitriol.

    Smith has poor taste in men – Francis Wheen and then Denis McShane aka Denis Matyjaszek, who is ‘a policy member for Labour Friends of Israel’. Does Smith herself have some leanings in that direction too?

    Why did Aaronovitch slide out and when were you told he wasn’t appearing and why?

    Radio 4 Today just now headed with an item that Lansley is allowing NHS Trusts to introduce overseas operations but only using funds from their private work in this country to set them up. Any profits back to the NHS. A very subtle litte trick to enlarge the private sector within the NHS. It will set the signal to green.

    This was followed by Obama saying that he will not intervene in Syria (although he has already done so covertly) unless he finds that chemical weapons are in use. Bush/Iraq Mk II. Wait for a suitable event. They take us for idiots and laugh in our faces.

    Nil desperandum Craig and DLTBGYD.

  36. So Ardin falsifies evidence, tries to destroy evidence and reveals her own identity to the media. Why should Craig be keeping her name a secret?

  37. Jonangus Mackay

    21 Aug, 2012 - 6:51 am

    Quasi-forensic analysis of how besieged Assange carefully teetered on national boundaries: http://bit.ly/Nb4Uau (Link immediately above first pic also worth a click—informative HD take on this top gun farce not readily available elsewhere.)

  38. Mary,

    To be fair, I don’t know that Aaronovitch ever confirmed. Simply the BBC told me he would be there – live lineup changes happen for all kinds of reasons. Joan Smith is generally a decent person. I think her concern for rape as an issue and for genuine rape victims is quite real and commendable. I just think it clouds her perception of what really is happening in this case. I think a great many feminists have the same difficulty.

  39. Looked like an ambush, Craig. It took them less than two minutes to label you a ‘conspiracy theorist’ – always a sure sign that you’re on the right track and they don’t like it. The interview was contextualised by female vox pops worrying about sexual offences, some kid from Index on Censorship (won’t trust them again) saying he didn’t like Assange and a demonic-looking George Galloway being rather unhelpful.

    And you’re right about the sound balance. A recent radio debate between Simon Raeburn of the law journal The Firm and Magnus Linklater (another media asset) had Linklater on full volume on the guilt of Al Megrahi, Raeburn on the probable miscarriage of justice barely audible, apparently somewhere outside the building.

    Yes, Esler was awful, but that’s not new.

    There’s something in the optimistic view that you were on a major TV channel and caused a sensation. It might not have been quite what you wanted, but the attempts to shut you up may activate something like the Streisand Effect. Keep plugging away anyway, and well done.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streisand_effect

  40. craig its very well a cause for concern bwtf.

    Go and catch the peodifiles.

    All this effort.

    They waste trillions on bombs and kids are starving.

    they are all leaning the same way.

    Greed and materialism.

    Turn your cheek.

  41. Keith Crosby

    21 Aug, 2012 - 7:37 am

    “Like and respect Joan Smith”? Do you still think she isn’t a shit? Could it be that your gentlemanly demeanour is the reason they could mug you? Perhaps you could practice a few well-rehearsed spontaneous comments, in case there’s a next time. I’m rather fond of “Fuck off yer red-nosed twat!”, I got it off Plato. ;O)

  42. Keith,

    I tend to like people, and in general try to think the best of them. Foolish often, but it is part of my homespun philosophy of getting through the day.

  43. Thanks for replying Craig. You said it better than me Vronsky and yes Craig is too gentlemanly for his own good Keith Crosby. That is why they substituted Aa for the harpie Smith. I have not forgotten that expression on Esler’s face when he knew that a goal was being scored and he joined in.

    A midnight chat on Medialens with ‘Rippon’ angry and hot under the collar. I suppose Craig is used to the slings and arrows by now although they must still wound.

    http://members5.boardhost.com/medialens/thread/1345501230.html

  44. > I am willing to bet that virtually all those tweeting and pretending outrage that I
    > named Ms Ardin, already themselves knew her name.
    Well, I didn’t. So you’re wrong on at least one count !

    > And all the manufactured fury at my naming Anna Ardin might well lead people to
    > research her claims and behaviour, which would be a good thing.
    Meaning ? It seemed from the interview that you were trying to discredit her claims by attacking *her* personally, although the interview never quite got that far. If you really are married to a survivor of rape, then I’m sure you’ll know quite how damaging the ‘victim blaming’ game is, yet you seem happy to perpetuate it.

  45. Only caught the end of the NewsNight piece on Assange. Well done for naming Ardin and exposing how completely fake the concern for the alleged victims are.
    .
    If Joan Smith and others had any worries before about the women being named I am not aware of it. Where are their opinion pieces on the Swedish media and their naming of the women? And as far as I am aware they have never concerned themselves with Miss A and Miss W’s or Assange’s statements to police being leaked to the press. Obvoiulsy leaked BY the police OR the prosecutor. Or have they asked why the Swedish investigation has been conducted in such an amateurish way, for example, the two women were interviewed informally and together on their initial visit to the police station.
    .
    Any examination of how the investigation has been conducted is completely off limits as if simply asking some basic questions on the behavior of the police and prosecutor you are accusing the women of not telling the truth.

  46. Craig,

    What’s all this with the word ‘charges’? Esler used the word and you didn’t stop him in his tracks. You use it again in the article above. Craig, there ARE NO charges. You failed to point out that Assange had already offered himself for questioning in Sweden. You also failed to point out that Assange can be interviewed by Sweden, there’s no legal reason they can’t question him in Britain, they have happily gone abroad to question a murder suspect.You should have expected dirry tricks from Newsnight, they’re famous fr setting people up, rather, you were like a vestal vrgin walking into a rapists convention, or was it the BBC ‘hospitality’ that did you?

  47. If I called Obama a racial slur, and defended it by saying such comments can be found all over Google, this would make it ok then?
    Regardless of the actions of others, we should be judged by our own actions and moral choices.
    I’ve always supported wikileaks and free speech, I will never support those who dodge fair legal process for sex crimes and those who defend them.
    I doubt any objective, unbiased observer would doubt that Assange’s dodging of the blatantly fair (and not US-loving) Swedish authorities in favour of the decidedly US-loving UK shows he is more afraid of the sexual assault accusations than the US threat. Not hard to then wonder why.
    Can you all not see that defending him on this only harms the rest of the free speech cause?

  48. Oh and David, Assange has repeatedly refused to be questioned in the embassy, all this apologizing and defending him tars the rest of us with the accusation of being rape-apologists.

  49. It is a pity you didn’t have time to mention Sofia Wilen too!

    I think there is, as Nextus said, a lot of mileage to be got from slipping in Anna Ardin’s name. The hypocritical Press Association has taken up on it and superciliously does not mention Anna Ardin. These people make themselves look stupid.

    http://www.pressassociation.com/component/pafeeds/2012/08/20/galloways_assange_blog_criticised?camefrom=home

  50. David,

    Actually I don’t view it as an important point. I respect your right to do so. Swedish criminal procedure is different to ours and I actually don’t think it is helpful to get bogged down in semantic discussions rooted in that fact. It is indisputable that Swedish authorities want to extradite him to face allegations. The motivation and origin of those allegations and above all the fact that they are part of a strong recent pattern of fitting up those connected to whistleblowing, is for me much more important. People always have different views of what are the killer arguments for a case.

  51. John Goss,

    Actually I feel sorry for Sofia Wilen. You must remember she was worried she may have an STD and was persuaded to go to the police station on the pretext it could result in Julian being tested. She then rather bravely refused to sign the police statement alleging a sex crime had been committed against her. It was not an accident I did not mention her – I fear this may all be very hard for her indeed. I hope she has good friends and family around.

  52. Good for you, Craig. The current establishment position is that Ardin and Wilen (both names now freely available on the internet) are poor little innocents brutally assaulted by the evil Assange.
    As I think I commented before, the idea that Ardin (name in public domain)slept with Assange and was so troubled by the “rape” that she organised a party for Assange to attend the next day, and to which her friend Wilen (name in public domain) was also invited (but not warned of Assange’s alleged behaviour), is manifestly absurd.

    And then I found this old report about Ardin (name in public domain since 2010) -
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/09/anna-ardin-julian-assange_n_794285.html

    Things that make you go hmmm, eh?

  53. Arnold Bocklin

    21 Aug, 2012 - 8:38 am

    The thing is, Craig, that these are unlikely to be the only women that Assange has assaulted. If you were one of his other victims, would you come forward now, having seen the sort of public humiliation you’ll be exposed to?

  54. Perhaps those so zealously concerned over the rights of Anna Ardin and the minutiae of her allegations might like to comment on the rights of those victims of the “Collateral Murder” incident (and their families) as exposed by Wikileaks. There was I recall a young girl who was a victim and the pilots simply laughed about it.

    Why no baying mob calling for justice to be done and howling for the perpetrators to “man up” and face trial in Iraq?

    http://www.bradleymanning.org/learn-more/collateral-murder-video

  55. Ardin seems to be something of a dab hand at working the media….

    “Anna worked with various issues and different sections of the embassy. In the political and economic section she (…) helped writing the final reports on the respect for Human Rights in Uruguay and Paraguay. To accomplish this Anna independently carried out a fact finding mission to Uruguay (…) Last but not least Anna was a great asset to the press and information section of the Embassy, where she worked with press information, promoted tourism to Sweden and administrated the website of the Embassy in an excellent way. Anna quickly became an appreciated member of the Embassy staff. Her positive attitude and good language skills makes her very easy to work with. I can warmly recommend Anna and I wish her all the best in the future.”
    September 1, 2005
    Fredrik Folkunger, chargé d’affaires a.i., Embassy of Sweden, Buenos Aires

    “Anna took on the job as Press and PR manager with great energy and managed to communicate ZERI Foundation’s message in a way that created very good publicity. Particularly her energy and focus is something that would make her a fantastic contribution to any team or situation.”
    July 22, 2002
    Anders Landberg, Pavilion Director, ZERI Pavilion at the World EXPO2000
    .
    http://annaardin.wordpress.com/quotes/

  56. It must be the heat getting to me but I can’t stop thinking the earlier ‘life of brian’ comment was quite pertinent and a light hearted break from all of this misdirected energy:

    Murray: Look, I don’t think it should be a sin, just for saying “Ardin”.
    [Everyone on Newsnight and twitter gasps]
    Esler: You’re only making it worse for yourself!
    Murray: Making it worse? How can it be worse? Ardin! Ardin! Ardin!
    Esler: I’m warning you! If you say “Ardin” one more time (gets hit with rock) RIGHT! Who did that? Come on, who did it?
    Studio audience: She did! She did! (suddenly speaking as men) He! He did! He!
    Esler: Was it you?
    Smith: Yes.
    Esler: Right…
    Smith: Well you did say “Ardin. ”
    [Virtual twitter crowd throws rocks at Smith]
    Esler: STOP IT! STOP IT! STOP IT RIGHT NOW! STOP IT! All right, no one is to stone _anyone_ until I blow this whistle. Even… and I want to make this absolutely clear… even if they do say, “Ardin. ”
    [Virtual twitter crowd stones Gavin Esler to death]

  57. I only know what I’ve read and seen on documentaries about Sofia Wilen and Anna Ardin. Julian Assange had been warned of a possible ‘honey trap’. Anna and Sofia are friends. They spoke to one another before going to the police station. They went to the police station together. Sofia may have been coerced. I don’t know. The reason both names should be in the public domain, and they are, is because, unless Assange was guilty or rape, which I don’t believe he was, they are the two people causing him all the problems. It is as well Sofia Wilen never signed the police statement because if she had Julian Assange would now be in a US prison. Ardin had connections with CIA-funded anti-Castro groups in the US.

    http://my.firedoglake.com/kirkmurphy/2010/12/04/assanges-chief-accuser-has-her-own-history-with-us-funded-anti-castro-groups-one-of-which-has-cia-ties/

    My guess is that when the US learned Sweden had allowed Assange to leave the country they got directly in contact with the powers that be to find out why and to instruct them to issue a warrant for questioning. This was complied with immediately.

  58. The Guardian’s heavily weighted coverage of Assange is of course coming from a feminist p.o.v. Rusbridger has adopted the print persona of Germaine Greer, but hasn’t quite got the balls to, er, pull it off. Here’s a plea from another feminist:

    Dear Interpol:

    As a longtime feminist activist, I have been overjoyed to discover your new commitment to engaging in global manhunts to arrest and prosecute men who behave like narcissistic jerks to women they are dating.

    I see that Julian Assange is accused of having consensual sex with two women, in one case using a condom that broke. I understand, from the alleged victims’ complaints to the media, that Assange is also accused of texting and tweeting in the taxi on the way to one of the women’s apartments while on a date, and, disgustingly enough, ‘reading stories about himself online’ in the cab.

    Both alleged victims are also upset that he began dating a second woman while still being in a relationship with the first. (Of course, as a feminist, I am also pleased that the alleged victims are using feminist-inspired rhetoric and law to assuage what appears to be personal injured feelings. That’s what our brave suffragette foremothers intended!).

    Thank you again, Interpol. I know you will now prioritize the global manhunt for 1.3 million guys I have heard similar complaints about personally in the US alone — there is an entire fraternity at the University of Texas you need to arrest immediately. I also have firsthand information that John Smith in Providence, Rhode Island, went to a stag party — with strippers! — that his girlfriend wanted him to skip, and that Mark Levinson in Corvallis, Oregon, did not notice that his girlfriend got a really cute new haircut — even though it was THREE INCHES SHORTER.

    Terrorists. Go get ‘em, Interpol!

    Yours gratefully,

    Naomi Wolf

    https://www.commondreams.org/further/2010/12/08-4

  59. It’s all a matter of perspective. Leave out the names but keep the star status & girl number 2 looks even more a a stalker than ‘back home early’ girl number 1. Wink wink.

  60. @Sarah – I agree with you about taking rape claims seriously. Despite Craig’s saying above that the ‘killer argument’ should not be about the minutiae of Swedish law, I still think that pointing out that Assange would be happy to be interviewed in London by Swedish prosecutors is relevant. It shows that he is not “evading justice”, and illustrates that there is an ulterior motive for extraditing him to Sweden. The Swedish police have consistently failed to explain why they won’t come to London, and the lawyer for the two women is being hugely secretive too.

    Out of interest, are you otherwise a supporter of Wikileaks?

  61. The Goose, The Gander, Anna Ardin
    There’s enough for a psychologists’ convention.
    http://radsoft.net/rants/20111121,00.shtml

    (undated)

    She (Anna Ardin) was on the front cover of Time Magazine December 2010 entitled Slut of the Year! The photo at the bottom.

  62. One more and I’ll shut up. I’ve been trying without much success to get a coherent timeline on the events leading to Assange’s problems. This is (via http://rixstep.com/1/20100914,00.shtml )from Aftenbladet, so as the site says, not reliable. But it looks like a logical sequence of events, and indicates that some of my previous assumptions are wrong. On the other hand, it shows that Wilen very much wanted to get near Assange, and that, unless Ardin and she were very good friends there is a huge question over why she later (but before going to the police) contacted Ardin.
    And, according to this account, it was Wilen who wanted to prefer a rape charge. This, after parting amicably from Assange, and confirming that he would phone her…

    √ 2010-08-20 (Friday). Assange moves his things out of Ardin’s flat. He claims it’s first on Friday he hears of her request.

    Wilén and Ardin arrive at the Klara police station at 14:00. Wilén wants to file charges of rape; Ardin tags along to be of help.

    They talk to a female police officer who concludes they’re both victims of sex crimes and decides to interrogate them separately. Of Wilén the female police officer writes the following in the report.

    ‘She said she’d been raped in her home on the morning of Tuesday 17 August by a man who had sex with her against her wishes.’

    The female police officer ends her report with the following.

    ‘Everyone I spoke to was in earnest agreement that this was a case of rape.’

    Ardin, who only came along to help Wilén, tells the policewoman she also had sex with Ardin. She tells the policewoman the condom broke during sex and now accuses Assange of deliberately breaking it. The police conduct their interrogation of Ardin the following day on the phone.

    So I don’t think Wilen comes well out of this either.

  63. Completely O/T but watch your shopping bills. I had a £12! overcharge on a Sainsburys bill the other day and then a smaller one when the prices on the shelf edges are different (ie lower) than the prices charged. This morning the CoOp did it too. Tesco do it but do at least pay back double the difference even though you have to go to the time and trouble of returning. Rarely do the staff at the ‘customer’ desks say sorry or if they do, sound as if they mean it.

  64. @Arnold – we can’t take your view seriously if you intend to make up “other victims” of Assange. Stick to the facts, and try to be even-handed (if you don’t like Wikileaks, then you need to put that to one side). As others have said, if the claims of sexual misdemeanor are correct, then the women have been badly let down by the Swedish prosecutors, who in turn appear to have politicised the case in a way that would cause any trial to fail *. Equally they have let down Assange, who – presumably you agree – also has the right to a fair and just hearing.

    (* I can’t speak for Swedish law, but here in the UK if there is significant media reportage on a jury trial before it has taken place, we call the situation “prejudiced” and our prosecutors can stop on the basis of the possibility of an unfair trial.)

  65. Her name is essentially public knowledge so it’s rather silly to ignore it in a discussion centered around her is it not?

    Why be so farcical?

  66. Dunno why you like and respect Joan Smith, to me she looked like a total arse. Obvious wittering stooge is oh so blindingly obvious. Well done sticking up for yourself, I hope this helps more people see through the Chicanery of the Anglo-American propaganda effort. Once those blinkers are off they stay off!

  67. My microphone was turned down compared to the other – er, no it wasn’t. I watched the programme and heard you all equally well.

    I did not know this woman’s name, I don’t know anyone who did know it until you clearly said it, and I didn’t want to know her name, because it is her absolute right not to be named.

    Craig Murray’s behaviour demonstrates to me that although he clearly places his own profile and political considerations, above the human rights of 50% of the population – women. Murray came across as arrogant, peevish and childish, even more offensive than Galloway.

  68. The discussion on Newsnight last night was a real disappointment – not your fault, Craig, but it simply ended up being layer upon layer of matters of secondary or minor importance. The whole naming-the-victim distraction was a prime example.
    .
    So I ended up trying instead to think how to avoid this happening in future… first and critical thing, it strikes me, is that you have to find a way of putting the Swedish charges to one side. Perhaps, by saying something like up front: “Julian completely rejects the sexual assault allegations, which he believes are a ruse and fabrication. His basic fear however is that in fighting the accusations in Sweden, he is putting himself at significant risk of extradition to the USA. It’s the latter issue which I am here to talk about.”
    .
    If someone else then wants to discuss to the Swedish charges, the instant rebuttal is – “sexual assault is obviously a serious crime, but as we can all agree, Julian Assange completely rejects the allegations against him, and that’s as far as we can helpfully advance this issue here. Now, back to why he is seeking political asylum…”
    .
    Maybe there’s a meta-legal strategy that makes this line of discussion unwise, but to me, unless you can set the sexual assault charges put to one side, it’s near impossible to have a substantive discussion about what’s actually going on here.
    .
    Finally, before anyone suggests I’m arguing otherwise, it is possible Julian Assange committed sexual assault. If he has, then he should face justice in Sweden. None of the discussion around his asylum bid negates this argument.

  69. @ Mary, The Ripster was a bit incandescent wasn’t he? I’m trying to get a list going of well rehearsed spontaneous comments, as an anti-COMbbc dirty tricks check list as a constructive alternative. You’re welcome to join in.

    http://members5.boardhost.com/medialens/msg/1345532361.html

  70. Ardin and Wilen were outed in 2010 in the NYT and Huffington Post. Counterpunch had both names by Aug 14th, 2010. ( http://www.counterpunch.org/2010/09/14/assange-beseiged/ ) By 2011, major print media worldwide (including Paris Match) are publishing Ardin’s name. There is one significant exception: the British English-language press.

    The names are in the public domain. The genie is out of the bottle. It is perfectly legitimate to use these names in a public discussion. The fact that they are out there at all is the fault of the Swedish authorities, and their shambolic handling of the case.

    You hadn’t heard of Ardin? Google Assange. The UK MSM is not the only show on the planet, and if you rely on it you are forging your own chains.

  71. Another Gavin

    21 Aug, 2012 - 10:34 am

    Craig – just a message of support. I’m a journalist of 25 years standing and a news junkie … I watched Newsnight last night and was horrified by the way Esler spoke to you and the unashamed bias he demonstrated. I switched off immediately after that. Who did the jumped up Paxman stand-in think he was speaking to adopting that tone? You did nothing wrong – this is just another smokescreen. Fight on.

  72. Komodo, that is classic. So the Swedish press are trying to get this case thrown out when the prosecutor turns out to be a friend of Anna Ardin! Wonderful. It won’t be long before Julian Assange is walking free – with any luck.

  73. @Susie – I assume you’re an opponent of Wikileaks too, then.

    You know, it is quite possible to hold views that you presently regard as contradictory – you can oppose the work of Wikileaks, support the right of the women in this case to be heard, and be horrified at the covert and underhand campaign at extraditing Assange. As has been mentioned many times on these threads, the Swedish prosecutors could come to London, and turned down many chances to interview Assange in Sweden.

  74. Simon McGrath

    21 Aug, 2012 - 10:45 am

    If you think the case is so weak why not let it go to trial ?

    Glad you are no longer a Lib Dem – saves the trouble of trying to have you expelled.

  75. Simon McGrath,

    “Glad you are no longer a Lib Dem – saves the trouble of trying to have you expelled.”

    You mean the LibDems are(gasp!) actually going to do something?? Still,i suppose if Cameron allows you to why not.Cant be many left in your party now..

  76. Yes it appears Ardin and the interrogator knew each very well indeed.The interrogator seems quite the celeb too and bangs a fair few political drums.

    Curiouser and curiouser…

  77. Esler’s venom was palpable.
    .

  78. If you think the case is so weak why not let it go to trial ?

    Glad you are no longer a Lib Dem – saves the trouble of trying to have you expelled.

    All you Lib Dems have to do is ask your idol very good friend Hague to formally deny the Swedes permission to render Assange to the US, and – problem solved!

    That’s if even the Swedish justice system doesn’t consider any possible case to have been hopelessly compromised by its own leaks and drop the case anyway…

  79. (In a hurry)

    As already someone has mentioned it, the fact that bait and switch tactic used by the hacks in the bbc, has worked, is corroborated by Craig himself in admitting to;“I was sorry that Aaronovitch was not there (as I had been told he would be) as I might have been more robust – I felt rather constrained arguing with Joan Smith…”

    Then his microphone has been turned down, whilst the others’ mics have been turned up so they could shout him down much more effectively, showing the punters and giving these the cues as to what line of thought they ought to be taking.

    Finally the god given excuse of the sacred Anna Ardin the sacred saint of confused whores and flighty spooks, mentioned. This latter point somehow confusing the issues, despite the fact that Assange will not be tried in UK for his “rape”. However this indignation overlooks that there is no judicial advantages or disadvantages to be gained or lost because her name was broadcast in UK. (never mind the fact that everyone across the planet knows this character)

    Further because Anna Ardin is a Swedish national therefore it is hardly likely that naming her on the telly in UK would cause her any kind of hardship, or embarrassment. However given that in the crazy times that we live in, any excuse to bash the dissents would do, and therefore the sacred rules broken here matters a great deal to Essler the anchorman who is in all probability and allegedly a guanine card carrying SIS asset among the many others masquerading as “reporters”. These fakes blow the matter up and run with the false indignation completing the farcical drama that Billy fourteen pints (the boss man) started by thinking; if he swings his dick around and looks big, it will do him good. Alas Billy fourteen pints has only ended up with his dick caught up in a door frame which Rafael Correa has been shutting it jam and holding onto the door handle steadfastly on the other side, leaving Billy fourteen pints with some considerable embarrassment and misery.

    Therefore the furore is to divert attention form the simple fact that a dissident is persecuted and upon his dash to freedom from persecution, the plutocrats are pulling all the stops to head him off at the pass, and keep persecuting, humiliating, and soft torturing him for the time being. Fact that some of the reporters ought to start reading wikipedia is an all too apparent need, these reporters should look up al Capone and see that he was arrested for spitting on the pavement and then tried for his none payment of taxes, and thereafter kept getting stitched up and kept there.

    In case of Mr. Capone the law did not have enough evidence to put him on trial for his crimes, in case of Assange he is going to be a guest in Gitmo for sure as already the Grand Jury in US has been set up in secret and is only awaiting his handover, by his future captors, however a little bit of extra torture dose not go wrong and puts the shits up any would be whistle-blower to go and mind his/her own business and stop being so fucking prissy about mundane facts: truth, justice, honesty, equity, and morality. QED mission accomplished.

  80. Sorry, yes, I meant the police interrogator, not the prosecutor. The Expressen article suggests the police interrogator also seems to have a few lively interests.

    “The police interrogator has amongst other things been on the board of the HBT (homo-, bi- and transsexual) social democrats. On her homepage she has published pictures of herself together with the retired leader of the party Mona Sahlin, and the former minister Thomas Bodström. The same Bodström who together with the social democrat Claes Borgström runs the law firm that has been hired by the plaintiffs in the Assange-investigation.”

  81. I have only just enough Spanish to get the general drift of this, but looks like a good and insightful piece, naming Ardin and Wilen (26), but unfortunately unable to identify the 26-y.o woman who wound up $1m better off after a Greek holiday. Translation welcome:
    http://www.israelshamir.net/Spanish/Asedio.htm

  82. Liz Morgan

    Well, I didn’t. So you’re wrong on at least one count !

    Forgive me for prying, when was the last time you sat for tea and scones with Anna Ardin?

    Now that you know her to be the plaintiff, will you be taking tea and scones next Maundy Thursday, or is that to be scrapped?

    What utter nonsensical bile, now that you know the name what difference does it make to anyone, or anything, other than you pouring your venom in a “rational” fashion given this apparent opportunity to do so.

    I bet you are one of those man hating feminista whom will happily cull the last male or “potential rapist and aggressive killing murderer scum bastard” to have a world with perfect harmony of womanhood alone.

  83. Whoops. Israel had the English version on his site all along. Senior lizard moment:
    http://www.israelshamir.net/English/Assange.htm

  84. I am dubious about the defence you used for naming Anna Ardin and I think that a dismissive one that Swedish law does not apply in Britain would have been better. You certainly could have used that against Esler when he went all precious on you.

    As for the rest I think your own analysis is spot on. You were too self-effacing and came over as a sort of other wordly vicar out of his depth. What was needed was a political bruiser like George Galloway who would have wiped his arse on that mouthy hackette.

    Still, the points about how the Great Satan and its vassals smear their opponents came over loud and clear and people will remember that nugget of information. Could you very briefly give us the four names and the details again please?

  85. Susie and Sarah are clever enough to use twatter, are able to find this place here and complain to their hearts content that they did not know Anna Ardins name?

    I do not believe one word they are saying, its reactionary nonsense.
    I presume that they are interested in feminism, why else should they be bothered to react. So, given this interest, they are making out that they did not look into this male’ honey trap’ for endangered party politicians with anti Cuban vexations. That they were not interested in Ms Wilen tweeting during the Conference he shared with Anna Ardin after they had sex the night before ‘that he has looked at her’?

    Both of the women expressed interest in his person, Anna, even after having been alledgedly raped, invited friends to a hastily arranged crayfish party?

    For what was that? because she felt bad a being raped by this man she arranged the party for.

    Susie and Sarah’s silly girl comments here are about as superfluous as an ice cube in a single malt.

  86. ‘Equality of arms’ is a fundamental component of true justice, hence Assange is innocent until proven guilty. Anna Ardin has yet to prove she was a victim, especially owing to the facts so far relating to real events, and her behaviour in situ, and after so called offences.

    Only Marxist-Feminists who conspire to destroy our culture, and its world class standards of justice, are guilty in this matter. So evil are Marxist-Feminists, that they will even destroy their allies to further their subversions:

    “RICK FALKVINGE: Well, I was discussing mainly with Julian and the… again I can’t go into too much detail here, but it was at least a very professional dinner. There were two high level organisations, both intent on changing the world behaving professionally.”

  87. I still find a most intriguing that Craig actually made it to the BBC. After the pattern of last minute cancellations over the past few years it is probably as significant as the content of those few minutes.
    Craig, do you have a theory about being off the black list ?

  88. The more we read and know about these two women, the more complicated the case seems.

    Dear old ZBC are jeering about Julian hugging Senor Garzon before he emerged to speak. All human feeling is despised by them.

    ‘The interview with Mr Correa opened with a short report from inside the Ecuadorean embassy in London.

    It showed Mr Assange hugging his lawyer, the former Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon, just minutes before he addressed crowds of his supporters from the embassy’s balcony on Sunday.’ {http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-19328335}

    As I keep saying, bastards.

    Anonymous are attacking government websites including No 10 and the Home Office.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-19330592

    As the horrible crowd all appear to be on holiday, I should think that is futile.

    Did you know that St Theresa of May is i/c of the country whilst Agent Cameron and Cleggover are away? :)

  89. AlexT, I think Craig’ll be back on the blacklist after mentioning the unmentionable!

  90. @ Ken, 11:35 am
    .
    I thought Craig’s defence was okay, but this mainly showed up the limitations of tv debates.
    .
    That her name is all over the internet is a little beside the point, the absolutely key fact is that she has given on-the-record comments to newspapers. She voluntarily gave up her anonymity. Simple as.
    .
    Had Craig been able to pull up the NY Times article – impossible in the TV debate format – which he referred to, Esler would have looked like a complete plonker… though if the BBC wants to show a bit of decency, Newsnight will apologise to Craig today.

  91. So, we’re NOT allowed to utter the name of a victim who publicised HERSELF in her blog posts about being with her “attacker” (AFTER the “attack”), who’s name has been public domain for nearly 2 years, BUT we’re OK saying the name of the man who’s not even been charged with a crime ???

    Can the BBC even fucking SPELL “hypocrisy” ????

    Also, does anyone else think “Stockholm syndrome” is perhaps the most ironic phrase in the world at this present moment ???

    Let’s face it, a CHIMP could successfully defend this case within about 15 seconds…

    “Ms A, did you or did you not brag about your relationship with the accused, on the day AFTER your ‘ordeal’, tweeting and blogging about getting breakfast, arranging a party for the accused, your ‘attacker’ and tweeting and blogging about said party, before inviting the accused, your ‘attacker’ to remain at your home, before deleting these posts a few days later, after you had become aware of the accused’s sexual relationship with Ms W???”

    “Ms W, did you or did you not, upon learning that the accused was to be prosecuted for rape, refuse to sign your statement, and subsequently leave the police interview in a state of distress, saying that you had been coerced by the police and ‘those around me’..????”

    Exhibit A: iPad, with google cached page of Ms A’s blog/twitter feed

    Exhibit B: Unsigned statement from Ms W, from an interview taken by a police officer who was a personal friend of Ms A.

    Hardly “12 angry men”, is it ???

  92. Craig, another demonstration of how far the BBC have descended in to the inner workings of a sophisticated propaganda machine, every Newsnight/BBC presenter has laying down in front of the establishment alter. I see the same is happening at every other UK based TV station/News outlet, it has all descended in to an never ending torrent of abuse on anyone that disagrees with war, making money and the many lives being sacrificed in the pursuit of such. We live in such sad times, what happened last night was all so predictable.

  93. The monstrous Tartuffe in the debate were quiet happy to bandy the name of the accused NB not the convicted rapist, however soon as the name of the saint of confused whores, and flighty spooks was mentioned, the female looking to take a chunk out of Craig first drivels on interrupting Craig, and then the second time around as Craig mentions it, you can see the glee in her face, she takes up the role of the saint protector and in tag with Essler proceed to shout down Craig.

    Do these wankers know that we the peopel are on to them, or are they blissfully ignorant of the fact that we know these for the sacks of manure they are.

  94. The question that I have about all this is what compels certain individuals/groups (which might otherwise have sympathy with Wikileaks) to be going for Assange’s jugular in the way that they are.

    It seems that these individuals/groups (which tend to be made up largely of the same women – and men – who don’t think fathers should have any role in the lives of their children after separation) have been forced into a corner here, and will refuse to acknowledge that an innocent man is having his name thoroughly blackened, because to do so simply amounts to a betrayal of the otherwise laudable campaign against violence toward women. It seems that these individuals/groups cannot back down, simply because they cannot be seen (in the media) to be backing down, on issues that are otherwise very important.

    For anyone with open eyes, there is no question that allegations of sexual misconduct or sex crimes have become the most powerful weapon in the west against political dissidents or those who rock the boat and expose things.

    It just baffles me and makes me wonder why certain individuals/groups who surely should know this, are still being so gung ho with their witch hunt.

  95. Eddie-G,

    Sure, but what he needed was a zinger of a reply and “Swedish law does not apply in this country – we’re an American colony,” would have been great.

  96. I can’t work out if George Galloway’s comments have helped or not. All the talk radio phone-ins are discussing them but are they a distraction? Should Galloway have known better?

  97. Esler’s always been as weak as piss anyway i wouldn’t worry about his bought and paid for “reactions”

    The Guardian and Newsnight both scoring delightful own goals yesterday.Ah,bliss…

  98. It is sad that we can no longer expect quality, probing journalism from Newsnight and to see Craig treated in such a hostile manner. Perhaps I am more naive than I thought myself to be.

    Why does the worlds media think that is perfectly acceptable for an accused persons name to be leaked to the press, but unacceptable for the accuser to receive any exposure at all? The world has seen the accusations against Assange in all their prurient detail. His life, both public and private, has been held up for public examination resulting in permanent damage to character. Given that this has become a media trial, with little hope of impartial decision making, I fail to see why the characters and backgrounds of the accusers should not also be publicly tested.

    Too many people read a striking headline and accept it as truth. That headline becomes their opinion and therefore Assange, is to them, a rapist. I have even read articles, by people who I have had some respect for, who have fallen into the same easy acceptance of the guilt or misconduct of Assange. The Third State is failing miserably in it’s duty to inform by chasing sales figures and popularity at the expense of actual facts.

    I have no sympathy for any person guilty of rape. I also have no sympathy for any person who falsely alleges rape. I believe that Assange wants the opportunity to clear his name and face his accusers, however, I cannot see, in the current climate, how that can ever happen.

  99. I know how the French felt before the revolution. I feel so angry about this and the crap that is coming out of the mouths of the right wing and on their vile little Twitters. I think of Bradley Manning undergoing torture and Julian Assange who has no real freedom at the moment. Imagine if we were incarcerated in a London flat hour on end for two months.

    I do not want to belong to this set up and when I heard this morning that Group4S carry out the monitoring on my burglar alarm, I immediately cancelled it even though I live alone and might rue the day I made this decision. If we all rise up as one, that would be telling the gangsters-in-charge and the banksters who have ripped us all off. I expect you are all hearing the latter and their stooges in the media chiming for bank charges for current accounts?

  100. I’ve blogged on Komodo’s link to Expressen, thanks for that, on Assange’s chance of a fair trial and Craig’s Newsnight appearance, most references picked up on this blog. Thanks again.

    http://johngossip.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/breaking-news.html

  101. I agree Craig, I too feel sorry for Sofia Wilen who became entangled with Julian as an innocent admirer, groopie if you like, even lover. I too would not have named her. Most know here I am cynical even scornful of the incidence believing the molestation accusations against Assange is/was a classic ‘honeytrap’ manipulated by outside influences including Rove. I do hope details will emerge that prove this.

    Mary,

    I am so glad you picked up on the Syria chemical/biological weapons statement. This has been picked up again(I have warned here already) by the main media who I believe are now running with the story in front of a frenetic, convulsive Julian Assange backdrop.

    I warn again from I believe valid sources I cannot name here of a chemical weapons catalyst that will enable the US and Britain to force further action against Syria.

  102. So, friendly with the Man of Straw too.

    Joan Smith

    Joan Smith is a novelist, columnist, critic and human rights activist. Her most recent novel, What Will Survive, is set in Westminster and Lebanon. She is the author of Misogynies, Moralities and the Loretta Lawson series of crime novels, two of which were filmed by the BBC.

    She is President of the Creators’ Rights Alliance and a board member of ALCS. She chaired the English PEN Writers in Prison Committee from 2000 to 2004, and was a member of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office free expression panel from 2002 to 2004. She is an honorary associate of the National Secular Society and a regular contributor to BBC radio. She blogs at http://www.politicalblonde.com and is Political Blonde on twitter.

  103. There are also very sinister things going on when the BBC consciously puts a story of the rape of a boy in a store lift right next to a story about Assange.

    Rape is a disgusting crime, but that has nothing to do with what someone sleeping with another person in bed might retrospectively interpret as poor bedtime manners.

    In free countries, a person ought to be treated as innocent until proven guilty, but what we’ve got in Britain right now is a mob made up of the media, political elites, and certain organizations that are unwittingly plunging us back into the ages of the crusades.

    What about the disgusting crime that is the protracted persecution of a single innocent individual, carried out over months if not years with the express purpose of breaking him to the point where his brokenness will then be held up by the lynch mob as proof of his guilt.

    Bonkers.

  104. She (Anna Ardin) was on the front cover of Time Magazine December 2010 entitled Slut of the Year! The photo at the bottom.

    Sweet Jesus, that’s a crap Photoshop job. Is somebody meant to take that seriously?

    I stand second to nobody in my defence of Assange, and in my suspicions of this entire thing being a massive stitch-up. But the levels of misogyny and anti-feminist bullshit spewing out from various quarters is making me ill. The same kind of crap is being excreted in the sceptic, atheist, gaming, comic-book, and other communities historically dominated by repressed, fearful, ‘men’ who are unable to deal with the fact that women are human beings, not property, and aren’t there to service males. And there appear to be no shortage of female enablers who have been so brainwashed by the patriarchy that, like working class individuals voting Tory, they work against their own interests.

    In fact, the fact that rape and sexual abuse brings these people out of the woodwork (or out from under the rock) shows how effective a ploy it can be: by choosing this method of discrediting Assange, those in power have very effectively divided the opposition. Those wondering why the US didn’t simply extradite him from the UK should look no further than that: this has been far more effective at destroying both him and Wikileaks as serious threats to the imperium.

  105. Nomad_UK, Mary made a mistake. The photo is labelled above it; it says “Artwork from [such and such]“

  106. NomadUK:

    “this has been far more effective at destroying both him and Wikileaks as serious threats to the imperium.”

    Hear! Hear!

  107. Smith speaking to Jenny Jones who had had a hard time before Craig’s appearance. She was critizing the Policy Exchange suggestion to get all the plebs out of social (council) housing and move them to the outer suburbs so that the developers can make a killing redeveloping the sites. Ghettos for the rich in other words. She was up against a smug Tory type London councillor, from Hammersmith and Fulham I think it was.

    2h Joan Smith ‏@polblonde
    @GreenJennyJones Great to meet you. Wish you’d been there for the rest of the programme when Craig Murray named an alleged rape victim!

    The episode is not up on the iPlayer yet.

    ~~~~~

    And the slimy Aa amongst the little chats with Joan Smith, Rifkind’s son Hugo, also a Murdoch type and others.

    d Aaronovitch ‏@DAaronovitch
    @polblonde @kmflett Murray is a very unpleasant and angry man who could as easily have ended up on the far right as the left.

    ~~~~~

    You can see that they are all in IT together.

  108. Mary – you quote a twit:
    @polblonde @kmflett Murray is a very unpleasant and angry man who could as easily have ended up on the far right as the left.

    I think she/he must be thinking of someone called David Aaronovitch, whose leftwing youth -

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2009/jun/21/university-challenge-rules-television

    In 1975, a team from the University of Manchester, which included the journalist David Aaronovitch, answered every question with “Che Guevara”, “Marx”, “Trotsky” or “Lenin”, hoping to make the recording unusable.
    (he was also a contributor to Marxism Today)

    belied the brilliance of his current career working for Murdoch in a style pioneered by Goebbels.

    Unles, of course, he/she IS David Aaronovitch.

  109. Quite why Craig gave Joan Smith the benefit of the doubt is beyond me. Unlike the Great Germaine, or Naomi Wolf, I’ve never found her convincing, or even especially intelligent.

    She & her ex- Denis MacShane (who shamefully escaped being charged for his inflated expenses claims) have been very active in peddling false statistics about the number of foreign women being forced into prostitution in the UK.

    Nick Davies (in the days when the Graun had a few decent journalists) exposes their distortions here-

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2009/oct/20/trafficking-numbers-women-exaggerated

  110. Craig ” Was it, incidentally, the first time you yourself had seen the name? I should be most surprised – please answer that, I am not being rhetorical.”

    Yes, as a matter of fact, it was. Being UK based I don’t watch the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

  111. I knew her name ages ago. It’s all tosh, as anyone with an ounce of objectivity would conclude.

    Imagine a man having sex with a woman, bragging about his conquest to his mates, continuing to sleep with her for days, and only later complaining to the police about it because it turns out the woman also had sex with someone else. He wasn’t raped, he says, but she doesn’t really like condoms and persuaded him to go along: heat of the moment, etc. Our hero would struggle to be heard over the laughter. So much for equality.

    So he’s an arrogant git who sleeps with his groupies. So what? They wanted it, and bragged about it. Whether you like Assange or not, or Wikileaks, if you prefer trumped up accusations over a real case to answer, how are you different from Stalin and his show trials?

  112. The victim in a case of rape or one of the sexual offences listed in the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 1992 is entitled to anonymity in the press.
    Once an allegation of one of the relevant offences has been made, nothing can be published which is likely to lead members of the public to identify the victim.
    Link: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1992/34/contents

  113. Everyone making hay with juvenile ‘humour’. Eg:

    http://newsthump.com/2012/08/21/uk-to-take-assange-by-forcing-itself-inside-ecuadors-embassy-while-its-asleep/

    but nobody is talking about collateral murder.
    QED. Their strategy worked.

  114. @Andy:

    “Yes, as a matter of fact, it was. Being UK based I don’t watch the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.”

    Well that makes you look like an ignoramus as her name has been splashed all over the papers and internet media everywhere for the last 2 years.

  115. 50 Shades of Grey…

    50 ways to feel about sexual misconduct allegations.

    I thought it well put “are these RAPE allegations, or rape ALLEGATIONS?”

    What they really are is off limits to protect the alleged victims.

    So, Obama recently said: “Rape is rape. The idea that we should be parsing types of rape doesn’t make sense to the American people or to me.”

    We have to protect the alleged victims, so that is all we can do.

    Also get around to parsing “military sexual trauma”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_assault_in_the_United_States_military
    Sexual assault in the United States military

    “There is an ongoing problem with sexual assault in the U.S. military which has resulted in a series of scandals that have received extensive media coverage. According to a 2011 Newsweek report, 1 in 5 females and 1 in 15 males in the United States military reported having been sexually assaulted by servicemembers …. experience in the Iraq War showing significant incidence of post traumatic stress syndrome resulting from the combination of combat stress and sexual assault.[2] 15% of female veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan who have visited a VA facility have screened positively for military sexual trauma.[3]“

  116. @NomadUK – yes indeed, great points. If you’ve time, we’ve discussed feminism several times here before, and the comment debates have been very interesting – see the search widget on the right. We have a few contributors who might be said to be coming from a Men’s Rights Activist approach on that topic, which usually makes for a lively argument!

    My interest in feminism as a man was sparked here, I think, as a result.

  117. @Sarah

    “Every woman who comes forward about a sexual assult deserves to be taken seriously at least until it’s proven otherwise. ”

    Every man who is accused of a sexual assault deserved to be treated as innocent at least until it’s proven otherwise. ‘At least’ because of history’s many miscarriages of justice.

  118. Arden made Assange a crayfish meal on a Swedish balcony to win back his affection from that cashmere women, but he was ungrateful! Now the whole world will pay. He should have gone back with her to her condo and handled things with more care. Moreover, he should have remembered her.

  119. Majority of people do not know who Anna Ardin is, even in Sweden. She did her PhD at Uppsala university and has a blogg and is part of the social democrats. Besides that there is hardly any stories about her and Assange in the Swedish media. I believe her lawyer have instructed her not the say anything at the moment.

  120. NomadUK, did you get the dates on that TIME magazine photoshop job? The issue has Assange on the cover, with a gag of the flag, stars and stripes that is.

  121. did you get the dates on that TIME magazine photoshop job

    Don’t care, to be honest. The thing is so stupid and juvenile it’s not worth paying attention to.

  122. “Majority of people do not know who Anna Ardin is, even in Sweden”

    @Soc:

    The majority of people don’t know where Timbuktu is. The majority of people who are interested in Africa do.

    The majority of the people who are interested in this case (and I presume that includes everyone posting here) know who Anna Ardin is. It’s called being well-informed.

  123. Thanks for picking that up Clark. It was a genuine mistake be assured. I did think it odd for Time Magazine and should have twigged it. There were other photographs in the set. Specsavers call.

  124. Hans Niesund

    21 Aug, 2012 - 6:01 pm

    What we really need here is an Internet trial of the (alleged) victims by bloggers and tweeters. That will surely get to the truth of the matter.

  125. That is not allowed Hans, do not go there. We can say anything we want about the accused whistleblower though.

  126. How about a trial by the aftonbladet and the expressen, Hans, they have been at it for some while and they know all the important hands to press.

    Crayfish anyone?

  127. I think Eddie-G’s advice on the immediately preceding thread (Naming Anna Ardin, 21 Aug @10:19) is excellent. Given the nature of the enemy, exemplified in this case by the BBC, being polite and sweetly reasonable is not winning backgammon – backgammon being a game of ruthless calculation.

    Unfortunately on this occasion Galloway made a pig’s ear of his blog diary on the topic, but in general you can learn a lot from his approach: know the most telling points of your argument, stick to them and bat away any attempt to move the argument to more doubtful ground. On TV you are not trying to communicate with the others in the studio. The protagonists are chosen to make consensus inevitable (Question Time) or impossible (the sort of thing you will be asked to do). You won’t convince intellectual lichen like Gavin Esler/Joan Wotsitsname because you can’t better their salaries, so just take the opportunity to speak to the viewing public. Us!

    Look back at your interview and listen to the Raeburn/Linklater interview linked below – I think the parallels are clear. You will not be fairly dealt with: recognise that and plan any further such ‘discussions’ carefully. And ruthlessly. You might generally respect Joan Thingy but you should have pished on her anyway. There are much bigger chips on the table than old-fashioned gallantry.

    http://lockerbiecase.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/the-great-linklater-raeburn-lockerbie.html

  128. Stephen cook

    21 Aug, 2012 - 9:12 pm

    I believe there is an orchestrated UK-wide MSM propaganda campaign being waged here. I can’t believe I have just written that, but I am forced to as it is the only logical conclusion that can be drawn form the vile barrage of lies and misinformation being pushed out relentlessly at the moment, not least by the BBC on the Assange extradition case.

    Over the last several days, I have been reading the Guardian articles on this and am flabbergasted at the blatant smear tactics used by them. I have read the comments section and am now pretty sure there are paid shills on there because every time anyone tries to post the actual facts of the Assange case there is a sudden and mountainous flurry of posts that quickly buries them of the main comments page. When I have tried to post the known facts of the Assange case in response to the persistent and blatant lies, the mods have begun to delete them. These post have not been rude or using bad language.

    They have simply been deleted.

    Additionally, all of the Assange related stories that are on their front page on the website have now had all capacity for comments closed down. The only remaining one with such a capacity is off the main page and so difficult to find.

    This is orchestrated.

    I am frankly scared by this. I always know even an organisation like the BBC, with it’s supposed impartiality, is going to be a voice for the establishment world view. Even so, I always assumed there was only so far an agenda could be pushed before a line was reached that would not be crossed. I was wrong. I just feel that some kind of really important line really has been crossed and we are in a new world. A darker world.

    What the hell is going on?

  129. Stephen cook

    21 Aug, 2012 - 9:14 pm

    I’m sorry, I’m just a nobody and my last post must seem, to some, to be naive in the extreme. But, I find what is happening at the moment to be absolutely shocking

  130. “I’m sorry, I’m just a nobody and my last post must seem, to some, to be naive in the extreme. But, I find what is happening at the moment to be absolutely shocking”
    .
    .
    not too worry better ten years late than never .

  131. “Unfortunately on this occasion Galloway made a pig’s ear of his blog diary on the topic, but in general you can learn a lot from his approach: know the most telling points of your argument, stick to them and bat away any attempt to move the argument to more doubtful ground.”
    .
    .
    the mistake galloway makes is that he assumes that the public are aware of the context as detailed above by craig in his blog. they are not, majority of people are still spoon fed by the msm .
    .
    in order to get the point home a degree of context needs to be made as a point of entry ..

  132. To be honest I didn’t know the women’s name and the Newsnight interview was first time I heard it. I think the use of it was counterproductive and entirely inappropriate. Counterproductive because it just demeans the points made.

    Even if her name is over the internet, and even been used in other countries, this does mean it needs to be aired again on live TV in the UK (where it has not) and indeed many people have not sought out the information and do not wish to do so (myself included). Anonymity in the UK is guaranteed for people who make allegations of sexual offences and so this is as much about consistency. If a naming occurs this time what is to say it does not happen again and again in other instances, where some people may think they are equaly entitled to say it for another reason. It’s a slippery slope and whilst I appreciate people have strong passions around this case, sometimes there are a need to step back from what is in front of you and look at the implications.

    I also think bit silly to have a go at the interviewer. Gavin esler just interviewed like a normal presenter and asked challenging questions. Pretty standard across most interviews with different points of view, and indeed had occurred only moments earlier in the debate around housing.

  133. Stephen Cook, don’t worry. I know it seems so hard to believe. But it isn’t a massive conspiracy (though there are plenty of small ones). Here are some things that might help:

    http://www.medialens.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=90&Itemid=22

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/how-the-spooks-took-over-the-news-780672.html

  134. “The majority of the people who are interested in this case (and I presume that includes everyone posting here) know who Anna Ardin is. It’s called being well-informed.”
    .
    youre wrong. people consider themselves well informed but still not know who aa is or the details of the assange allegations.
    .
    what they do know is superficial and distilled from msm who muddy the water and out of that create their narrative for the benefit of those with vested interests bigger, brutal and dishonest than assange or galloways

  135. “I also think bit silly to have a go at the interviewer. Gavin esler just interviewed like a normal presenter and asked challenging questions. ”
    .
    .
    esler is not a neutral player he is very much neocon – pro zionist . in that context he is not a normal presenter asking challenging questions.

  136. Stephen Cook

    21 Aug, 2012 - 9:54 pm

    “…I also think bit silly to have a go at the interviewer. Gavin esler just interviewed like a normal presenter and asked challenging questions. Pretty standard across most interviews with different points of view, and indeed had occurred only moments earlier in the debate around housing….”

    I’m sorry, but I can’t agree with that.

    I have been watching Newsnight over the last few days and the presenting of the Assange case has not been merely the usual “challenging” questions. There has been an orchestraed tone in my opinion. Gavin Estler’s interview with Craig Murry and Joan Snith was just the latest expression of that orchestrated tone.

  137. I can’t comment on the overall tone of reporting in recent days, and may be is the case, and to be honest I was only watching yesterday due to the story on housing, but from an objective point of view (which I honestly think I am) I don’t think he showed bias. Think he and Joan Smith were just shocked and surprised to hear a name mentioned. This did not result in the interview stopping, indeed Craig Murray was invited to make the same point he was making, just told not to say a name. I don’t know the facts of the case, so not going make a judgement, but fair to say the use of the name was counterproductive as it knocked Craig Murray completely of his stride. I don’t think that was the fault of Esler and Joan Smith, as I said earlier, it just would not be correct to name anybody who has alleged a sexual offence (regardless of circumstance or sympathises) and so they, in my view, were right to interject on that point.

  138. “…..Stephen Cook, don’t worry. I know it seems so hard to believe. But it isn’t a massive conspiracy….”

    I would have always ordinarily been of a similar opinion. That is to say, there are factions in positions of power who, from time to time, push, nudge, or even force events in their favour. But, for the most part, there is no overarching orchestration from above, save for absolute totalitarian regimes such as Stalinist Russia etc.

    However, the lies and misinformation I am witnessing in the MSM at the moment can only be described as orchestrated. Also, it’s worth bearing in mind that our system is very pyramidal in structure. The chain of command from the newsroom to the very upper echelons of power will not involve that many people. A policy decision in terms of what news is going to get pushed and the manner in which it is be pushed, by the time it gets down to the editor’s desk or the presenters desk, becomes transformed from policy to procedure. Before long, every other news outlet gets the message and gets on message.

    At the bottom of these food chains are real people with mortgages to service and pensions to fill up who are not paid to seriously question what they are putting out.

  139. I can’t comment on the overall tone of reporting in recent days, and may be is the case, and to be honest I was only watching yesterday due to the story on housing, but from an objective point of view (which I honestly think I am) I don’t think he showed bias. Think he and Joan Smith were just shocked and surprised to hear a name mentioned. This did not result in the interview stopping, indeed Craig Murray was invited to make the same point he was making, just told not to say a name. I don’t know the facts of the case, so not going make a judgement, but fair to say the use of the name was counterproductive as it knocked Craig Murray completely of his stride. I don’t think that was the fault of Esler and Joan Smith, as I said earlier, it just would not be correct to name anybody who has alleged a sexual offence (regardless of circumstance or sympathises or country) and so they, in my view, were right to interject on that point.

  140. apologies pressed submit twice

  141. “However, the lies and misinformation I am witnessing in the MSM at the moment can only be described as orchestrated. Also, it’s worth bearing in mind that our system is very pyramidal in structure. The chain of command from the newsroom to the very upper echelons of power will not involve that many people. A policy decision in terms of what news is going to get pushed and the manner in which it is be pushed, by the time it gets down to the editor’s desk or the presenters desk, becomes transformed from policy to procedure. Before long, every other news outlet gets the message and gets on message.”
    .
    .
    a pretty accurate representation .. its why the murdoch deal is important but is being whitewashed away ..

  142. “….There are also very sinister things going on when the BBC consciously puts a story of the rape of a boy in a store lift right next to a story about Assange….”

    Theyve got him surrounded now.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/

  143. I thought you meant the embassy Stephen hehe!

    No its these BBC News headlines:

    Meles death ‘won’t unsettle Ethiopia’
    Paralympian trio facing charges
    Boy is raped in department store
    Assange protest hits UK websites
    Rape-remark US candidate digs in
    Galloway ‘clarifies’ rape views
    Wet weather ‘cuts insect numbers’

    Just a coincidence im sure, a dearth of rape headlines – it would be wrong to curate them any other way. /s

  144. Excellent and clear. Murray spoke very well outside the Ecuador Embassy. Anyone following Assange sees the name Ardin almost daily in the press.

  145. Of course, it was fine for the Swedish police to leak what should have been confidential and private to the tabloids and set-off an around the clock smear campaign against Julian Assange, but it’s not alright for you to name someone whom everyone familiar with the case has known about all along. I’m glad that the Australian media has been brave enough to name names and call this into question instead of taking on an overly sanctimonious air about Anna Ardin all the while character assasinating Julian Assange.

  146. Passerby

    What utter nonsensical bile, now that you know the name what difference does it make to anyone, or anything, other than you pouring your venom in a “rational” fashion given this apparent opportunity to do so.

    I bet you are one of those man hating feminista whom will happily cull the last male or “potential rapist and aggressive killing murderer scum bastard” to have a world with perfect harmony of womanhood alone.

    No, wrong again – but nice try ! Nor am I a fat hairy lesbian, or sexually frustrated and “in need of a good seeing to”, before you ask. I’m not quite sure what pouring of venom you’re referring to; I asked a simple question, to which I have yet to receive a response.

    Now are you going to discuss things nicely like an adult, or stay in the playground adn carrying on hurling insults to people who challenge your viewpoint ?

  147. I read above someone invoking the term feminism. It would of course be more accurate to speak of feminisms. Just as there are unhealthy forms of maleism (some call it misogyny), so to are there unhealthy forms of feminism. Feminism in principle is laudable of course, but much of British feminism failed, and cannot really be called feminism at all. We still have a disgusting patriarchy, and nowhere is it more visible than this notion that woman are to be protected, but men needn’t be protected – be it from false allegations, manipulation and control, etc. Feminism was hijacked long ago by the gender-warmongers and the domestic violence lobby, with the express purpose of pushing the myth of the violent male sexual predator, and with the upshot that loving fathers are routinely bullied out of the lives of their children, and have no say in reproductive, health and educational matters re children. This domestic violence lobby is extremely powerful, and maintains its power and funding by grossly distorting statistics of male-on-female violence (suppressing any hint that the violence is just as often the other way about).

    In the media at least, this is no longer about the politics of Wikileaks. The game has moved on. This is about the politics of gender warfare.

    Someone above also made the remark that nothing has done more to destroy Assange and Wikileaks than this divide and conquer strategy that certain parties are playing at. That couldn’t be more true.

  148. “…..In the media at least, this is no longer about the politics of Wikileaks. The game has moved on. This is about the politics of gender warfare.

    Someone above also made the remark that nothing has done more to destroy Assange and Wikileaks than this divide and conquer strategy that certain parties are playing at. That couldn’t be more true…..”

    Yep, they play us all like bloody fiddles.

    It’s so sodding depressing.

  149. I saw Newsnight and under ordinary circumstances it would be illegal and disgraceful to name a rape victim. Most decent people would support victims’ rights and the logical pursuit of “criminals”. The contention is that this is something else and there is good reason to think so. Anna Ardin has named herself and the Swedish police have behaved indiscreetly. The behaviour of the people concerned doesn’t add up. Assange has good reason to believe dark forces are at work here – after all in the initial instance he cooperated with Swedish police and was told he was free to leave the country. I actually don’t think there is a case that would stand up if heard in a Swedish court nor do I believe he would be extradited to the US. What is happening here is a good old fashioned bit of “discrediting” a whistleblower (of sorts) by polluting the issue with a controversial segue ie stop the media from printing Assange truthseeker / whistleblower etc and get them to print Assange – rapist. What is really disappointing is the number of single issue focused people including feminists out there who don’t know when they are being used. For anyone unsure there are facts available through basic online research.

  150. @Liz Morgan – I think you’ve judged Craig wrongly, but you are totally right to ask for a civil debate.

    @Passerby – please tone it right down, if only for the reason that you’re shooting yourself in the foot. I don’t recommend you go down an anti-feminist path either, since you’ll not do yourself any favours by appearing to be uncharitable towards alleged victims of sexual misdemeanour.

    For what it’s worth, we need to try to chart a path that acknowledges the right of the individual to bodily integrity (i.e. not to be sexually assaulted) as well as the right to avoid arbitrary imprisonment (i.e. for challenging imperialism). Liz/Passerby, isn’t this combination satisfied by insisting Swedish officials come to London? If they question Assange and then decide to press ahead with a charge, then he will have to consider his options, which will be extremely limited at that point.

    But until that point, people should be asking why the Swedes won’t come to London, and why the Swedes are still refusing to say why they won’t come to London. Ordinary folks should be asking these things even if they are opposed to Wikileaks on the grounds of national security, or if they are opposed to Assange on the grounds of feminism. Individuals of all political stripes should stick together on this one, since Assange won’t be the last person the US wish to have whisked away. The Natwest Three are still there.

  151. Phil,

    I should just like to object to your use of the term feminists. There are some real ones out there too, who are more alert to what is going on here, and would scream against the bastardization of the term rape by grunt journalists at the Guardian if it advanced their purpose. What is unfortunate perhaps is that they are not doing so, for the simple reason that at least this media spectacle is raising consciousness about the problem of rape.

    It’s just a little sad because, in the process, truth is wildly distorted, and human rights activists the world over will now think twice about what they publish.

    On the horizon is something much worse than Orwell could have imagined.

  152. Haven’t read the whole long comment thread here but,

    The problem is you believe a genuine judicial process is going on, and normal rules should be followed. I believe this is a stitch-up, there is no impartial process and we have to break normal rules to prevent an innocent man being framed.

    I’m sorry, that’s a disgusting thing to say. You don’t get to decide to ignore legal proceedings just because you personally believe an accused man to be innocent. He may well be, but that’s for a court to decide.

    I had no prior knowledge of Ardin before hearing that she had been named on Newsnight. I watched the ABC documentary, which seems to reach exactly the conclusions you’d expect it to when most of the contributions were from Assange’s lawyers. Ardin’s lawyer is perfectly justified to say that he will wait to put his defence before a court.

    All that said, if Ardin did choose to go to the press herself, then I see nothing wrong in you naming her. It seems odd that she would choose to do so, as all this public investigation into her past and private life is exactly the sort of thing that rape victims very reasonably are entitled to protection from.

  153. Craig I thought it was disgraceful how you were treated on Newsnight. Other than the hypocritical feigned horror at the name revelation, you were constantly interrupted, talked over and ganged up on. I was truly incensed after watching it. The British press, across the board has acted shamefully and deliberately obfuscated the facts of the Assange case.

  154. Tried putting a link to the Australian documentary on the Guerrdian CIF; moderated, and I didn’t use the words Israel or Zionist.

  155. Naming to women involved! Yea gods, I thought everyone knew their names within a week of the initial uproar…..we certainly did, as did most of our friends and we live 100 miles from the nearest civilisation……
    Pathetic, the whole tawdry affair – and that’s the governments involved, let alone the people…….

  156. I made an official complaint to BBC about the obvious bias…

    Please everyone do it… it can be done fairly simply on line and you should get an emailed receipt including your complaint in words for the record – so it can be followed up.

    Good luck Craig I have attempted to put a hyper link to your you tube speech on today’s CIF others go there as there seem to be a lot of Troll posters…

  157. “….Good luck Craig I have attempted to put a hyper link to your you tube speech on today’s CIF others go there as there seem to be a lot of Troll posters……”

    To be honest, the amount of concerted disionformatiom being pedalled on comments sections of the main newspapers and other high profile media outlets, it seems to me there are not just trolls out there, there are paid shills out in force as well.

  158. I watched your session on the night of the broadcast Craig and I thought you came across as a real human being, in contradistinction to Essler who’s strings are clearly visible to those with real eyes (and ears).I seriously wonder who the hell Essler really works for? I believe Newsnight is nothing but a state sponsored sham of bias reporting.
    Although I think I am “pissing in the wind”, I have raised 2 complaints with the BBC over Newsnight’s handling of the Assange saga, and I have raised a freedom of information request with them asking for the guidance documents used to govern the standards of reporting and editorializing for the show and the BBC in general. I have had a reply to my first complaint, a fob-off as you might expect and a factually false fob-off at that. I am happy to post the complaints & replies here if they are of any interest? But I just wanted to let Craig know that we are not all afraid of the childish sycophantic bully’s sidekicks that patrol the playground of the BBC.

  159. Here is the link to the 4Corners doco Sex, Lies, & Julian Assange if anyone still hasn’t seen it…

    http://www.abc.net.au/4corners/stories/2012/07/19/3549280.htm

    Keep up the good work Craig, your opinions count in Australia too…

  160. I for one salute you Craig. I find it bizarre the way the BBC deems the life and reputation of one person to be somehow worth less than the life and reputation of another just becuase the former is the accused and the latter is the accuser. Or is it simply because the former is an Australian and the BBC feels that it must kowtow to the Sweden the way the government does too?

    I echo Mike above: your opinions count in Australia too.

  161. Rupert Murdoch thinks he has the right to treat people with complete disrespect and an utter disregard of privacy. I did not think that I would see the day when Craig Murray decided that he had the right to behave in the same appalling manner. His performance on Newsnight was disgusting.

  162. Dear Jan,

    “Rupert Murdoch thinks he has the right to treat people with complete disrespect and an utter disregard of privacy.”

    That is the least of Rupert Murdoch’s crimes, small scale, the man has been largely responsible for the undermining of our illusory democracy for almost half a century, has virtually had a rubber stamp seal of approval on who should govern this country, manipulated elections, practically dictated government policy and is still in the forefront of cheerleading for, fomenting and manufacturing consent for a series of wars which have killed millions and caused intolerable suffering to tens of millions.

    9 out of 10 human beings (I’ve asked them all) share your dislike for that Murdoch. Now having established your ‘right on’ and firm anti-establishment credentials (just lacking in a declared intent speed Thatcher into her grave in order to defecate thereon), I don’t see though how you get from that to suggesting that Craig Murray’s appalling treatment at the hands of a state run disinformation establishment, the Broken Broadcasting Corporation, in trying to establish the truths behind this Assange/Ardin/CIA matter makes him in anyway comparable with Murdoch. Your reasoning is disgustingly unsound. You disgust me.

  163. The only thing left for the BBC to do is replace all programs with a record of the national anthem playing. It’s dead Jim. And good riddance. Thanks for the Goons and Just a Minute.

  164. I’ve read some horrible instances of unadulterated rape apologism and misogyny on the internet in my time, but have to say that this takes the absolute award.

    To raise a few points; I’m not going over the main points of the Newsnight fiasco again – other people have raised this in a better way that I could, and if people aren’t really understanding what was wrong about it, then I can’t add anything either. I will say however, that for man used to publicly documenting the vagaries and bias of the BBC over the years, it’s pretty disengenious to have the same person then appear on a BBC schedule and screach on about his treament so indignantly, as if genuinely expecting any other course of events; But then this doesn’t surprise me – I stopped reading this blog after getting sick to the stomach of reading about the hand-wringing of a Liberal Democrat, who – happy enough cheerleading for the coalition back in May 2010 – balked at the ebb of their ex-party’s influence, while people have died in this country as a direct result of government policy.

    To select a few more notable points…

    David…

    “I should just like to object to your use of the term feminists. There are some real ones out there too, who are more alert to what is going on here, and would scream against the bastardization of the term rape by grunt journalists at the Guardian if it advanced their purpose. What is unfortunate perhaps is that they are not doing so, for the simple reason that at least this media spectacle is raising consciousness about the problem of rape.”

    - Thank god (actually, thank feminism) that you don’t get to decide what feminism is; And if the day comes when any of you can actually find a real feminist who’ll go on record and tell you that the definition of rape as ‘non-censentual intercourse’ is a “bastardization of the term rape”, then let us all know so that I can pinch myself to make sure I haven’t been living in a fucking Victorian Novel all these years.

    “We still have a disgusting patriarchy, and nowhere is it more visible than this notion that woman are to be protected, but men needn’t be protected…”

    - Oh I dunno, I tend to think it’s visible, being patriarchy n’ all that, in every aspect of a hierarchical society and embedded in every aspect of our discourse in that society, none more so than in the fucking ridiculous notion of men being prima facie ‘oppressed’ (without additional factoring qualification) and the way in which discussions of female oppression inevitably get turned back round to talk about male disadvantage, without registering that patriarchal discourse always tries to re-center dialogue back on male experience. Which is pretty much what you’re doing here. I don’t know what your ‘Fathers 4 Justice’ histrionics are all about, but you’d probably be better off taking that baggage out of the equation when discussed feminism per se. It has nothing to do with your points.

    And speaking of which, Al…

    “Imagine a man having sex with a woman, bragging about his conquest to his mates, continuing to sleep with her for days, and only later complaining to the police about it because it turns out the woman also had sex with someone else. He wasn’t raped, he says, but she doesn’t really like condoms and persuaded him to go along: heat of the moment, etc. Our hero would struggle to be heard over the laughter. So much for equality.”

    - Excellent straw-example. ‘so much for equality’, you ask – yes, because if we’ve learned anything over the years, it must be that rape is definitely, definitely nothing to do with inequality – we could have total equality and it would still happen, women could set the terms for their consent to sexual intercourse, have their partner respect their wishes and understand the terms consent is given on, and *that it needs to be given* and we’d still have these ‘little misunderstandings’ happen (this is sarcasm btw, in case you didn’t get it, I know how differences in what words mean must flummox some of, what with ‘no’ and ‘yes’ and ‘consent’ and things like that). This is just plain fucking insulting, and bears absolutely no comparative resemblence to even the account put out by the defence.

    Oh yes, and finally, for those intellectually short-changed by misinformation,
    http://amiobjective.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/assange-case-quick-reference-with.html#!/2012/08/assange-case-quick-reference-with.html

    Fucking Sickening.

  165. Hi @SCM

    Yes, we do get some misogyny here – a small handful of contributors. We could strike them out, but then that would go against the freedom of speech we value here. Most commentators here condemn misogyny in all its forms.

    I agree that David doesn’t get to define “feminism”, and thankfully neither do you. There are plenty of different strands of thought in feminism, and – presumably within reasonable parameters! – we all get to define it, if we wish.

    Mine goes like this: a feminist defends the rights of women. Here, we have to balance the rights of women not to be sexually assaulted, against the rights of whistleblowers to expose (war) crimes against women. The inhuman machine of war affects women substantially, as you’ll know – as does the religious extremism (of all varieties) that it whips up.

    Liberals have, I think, shown that a path can be bridged between these competing interests, and in this case also, but sadly we hear from one or two who only want to see Assange suffer, his guilt already decided upon. That’s anti-feminist in my book, and – since it forms a direct attack on whistle-blowing, will ensure that the number of people [who] have died in this country as a direct result of government policy will just increase.

  166. I’m a fella and I frequently feel like I’ve been raped by the tax man, insurance companies, my local council, and the price of fuel for my car and the little gas fire in my lounge. That was deliberately provocative! But this is not about what constitutes rape! Despite Newsnight’s Kirsty Wark’s attempt to bring the debate around to that last night. This is about innocent until proven guilty and why it is acceptable to name the suspected rapist but not the suspected victim. In a fairer society, the names of both parties would probably be withheld until the jury has given its verdict. But all too often this is not what happens and it is especially not what happens when powerful authorities are bent on destroying the unwanted activities of those who believe that the only way to have a truly fair society is to have full disclosure with no contrived instruments of protection for the perpetrators of bad policy.
    In this instance, that bad policy is literally tearing the flesh of the living bodies of tiny innocent children in far off lands under cover of night and the operators of those flying machines of death have games controllers in their hands. “Wow dude, good shot” they cry with a slap on the operators back as the guts, blood, flesh and splintered bone of another innocent living baby get sprayed like a Christmas champagne celebration all over what must be the true spirit of humanity given the numbers of people willing to turn a blind eye. “Shouldn’t have brought children to a war zone” that pilot said after he strafed that van full of children who were just round the corner from their homes in their neighborhood with their relatives, trying to help a bunch of innocent un-armed men whose bodies had also just been ripped apart by an evil regime for nothing more than filming on their local streets. This we know because of Wikileaks and Bradley Edward Manning.
    The assault on Assange is clearly convenient for those who’s interests are not best served by disclosure of the truth. The sad fact is that the authorities can’t lose here because I would bet that the treatment of Mr Assange has already silenced many potential prominent conscientious objectors. “And Maggy, god bless Maggy, thinks it wouldn’t do for you, to know about the naughty things that grown up people do.” (Billy Bragg – spy catcher saga) ring any bells?
    Wake up, stand up and shout the truth, or get a knife and cleave the flesh from your children’s bones yourselves to see if you like what you are effectively sanctioning elsewhere when you support the UK / US establishments desire to prevent disclosures.

    Please, this is not man versus woman, this is soul versus evil!

  167. @Jon,

    “We could strike [misogynists] out, but then that would go against the freedom of speech we value here. Most commentators here condemn misogyny in all its forms.”

    - I’m saddened that you think this, you can’t value genuine freedom of speech and tolerate misogyny (where identified) anymore than you can tolerate freedom of speech and tolerate racism – because misogyny, like any other reductive patterning of oppression, thrives on dismissing, devaluing and misrepresenting the perspectives and reality of the people targeted by it. If you’re creating a space where this is tolerated, you can’t possibly talk about freedom of any kind for anybody.

    “I agree that David doesn’t get to define “feminism”, and thankfully neither do you. There are plenty of different strands of thought in feminism, and – presumably within reasonable parameters! – we all get to define it, if we wish.”

    - No, sorry you don’t. If I’m excused in making a reasonable presumption on the basis of screen-names and gender, ‘we’ don’t all get a say in defining it – a man can’t possibly define what feminism means (though he may define what he understands by the term); a man presuming to tell a woman what feminism means is exactly what I spoke about regarding masculine discourses above. There may be plenty of different strands, but there is a core, and that core is partly represented in my post above, which is generally accepted across the sphere of feminist thought.

    “Mine goes like this: a feminist defends the rights of women. Here, we have to balance the rights of women not to be sexually assaulted, against the rights of whistleblowers to expose (war) crimes against women. The inhuman machine of war affects women substantially, as you’ll know – as does the religious extremism (of all varieties) that it whips up.”

    - There’s no balance to be had, you can’t simultaneously defend the inviolable right to freedom from sexual assault while writing an apologism for sexual assault (for reference to this specific case, even the defence’s record of events constitutes the terms for non-consensual intercourse. In both countries involved this, according to law, constitutes the specific offence of Rape). And, unfortunately for your argument, the right to whistleblowing is not in question. I support the protection of both women and men against Sexual Assault. I support the right of citizens to expose information relating to injustice. I don’t support the rights of perpetrators of either to evade trail, investigation or prosecution.

  168. Hi @SCM,

    I’m not tolerating misogyny at all. In fact in the several years I’ve been on this blog, I’ve frequently spoken out against it; see here and here (search for “Jon” and my opponent “JimmyGiro”).

    If you’re creating a space where this is tolerated

    Again, competing values. Freedom of expression is also important, so I would rather let the misogynist have his say, and then to reason with him, rather than call for his deletion. (In fact, since I am a moderator, I could delete his remarks myself, but that poses an additional difficulty – one cannot moderate and debate at the same time. It’s a conflict of interest – if you’ve ever moderated an internet forum, you’ll know what I mean!).

    Furthermore, I think the automatic deletion of all discriminatory attitudes is running away from the problem – so to categorise it as toleration is way off the mark. But, for the record, we have deleted nasty comments here of all kinds, where the poster is just being offensive and will not enter debate (anti Jewish racism is probably the most common).

    a man can’t possibly define what feminism means … a man presuming to tell a woman what feminism means

    Yes, I’m a man – assumption permitted :)

    You’re falling into two classic traps here, which is (a) men cannot be feminists, and (b) all women are feminist. Any Gender Studies course these days – primarily attended and taught by feminist women – I think would gently put you right you on this point, since you are shooting the movement in the foot with a pretty big gun. Both assumptions are false, and (a) additionally is sexist as well, which isn’t a good position for an anti-sexist to take.*

    There’s no balance to be had

    Not even for the women suffering around the world as a direct result of the neocon policies challenged by Wikileaks?

    you can’t simultaneously defend the inviolable right to freedom from sexual assault while writing an apologism for sexual assault… I don’t support the rights of perpetrators of either to evade [trial], investigation or prosecution

    Here is the nub of our disagreement. I’ve been quite blue in the face, on this very board, saying that Assange should face the sexual misconduct accusations. I don’t know how I can put it plainer, but it is as if my writing doesn’t appear on your screen. I do think that the process should have the Swedish prosecutors come to London, and I don’t think that the likelihood of justice for the women involved is modified (either way) if the prosecutors were to do so. I am quite sure that there is past precedent for police teams travelling within Europe in relation to offences under a EAW.

    Now, if the Swedish team were to come to London, and then subsequently decide to prosecute and go to trial, then he would probably have little choice but to go. I imagine his legal team would try to obtain assurances that he would not subsequently be deported to the US, either from the UK or from Sweden (I am not sure under the EAW who gets to decide). Presumably if your only interest is justice for the alleged assault victims, you would agree with this strategy?

    * If I can’t persuade you on the Assange case, I would at least like to persuade you of this, as I think it is important. I’ve expounded on this view elsewhere, and I should be interested in your view upon it.

    Thanks!

  169. Arnold Bocklin

    24 Aug, 2012 - 12:11 am

    @Jon

    Stick to the facts

    I am sticking to the fact – the facts of how sexual predators are known to behave. If Assange has assaulted two women, you can be certain that he’s done the same to many more.

    The two Swedish women are to be commended for coming forward; Assange’s other victims however are likely to be more reticent. By naming one of the Swedes on TV, Craig has made it less likely that those earlier victims will volunteer themselves, less likely that they too will get the justice they deserve.

    if you don’t like Wikileaks

    I’m a big fan of wikileaks. Or, rather, I was a big fan of wikileaks, of the old wikileaks, the wikileaks that fought to bring justice to the weak by exposing the crimes of the powerful. I’m not so keen on this new version of wikileaks with the opposite values, the wikileaks that seeks to hide the truth behind a smokescreen of lies in order to let a criminal escape from justice…

  170. @Arnold:

    the facts of how sexual predators are known to behave…

    …in order to let a criminal escape from justice…

    You’re assuming he’s guilty even before he’s been charged or convicted? I see. I thought his opponents were positioning themselves as being in favour of fair trials?

    If Assange has assaulted two women, you can be certain that he’s done the same to many more.

    At least you use the word “if” here. But, no, you can’t assume any such thing. You’re not even attempting a semblance of liberality and justice here. Again, a measure of guilt – including the numbers of crimes a person has carried out – must be determined by a fair and transparent judicial process. Not your “certainties”.

    I’m not so keen on this new version of wikileaks with the opposite values

    There is no “new Wikileaks” and your suggestion that Wikileaks itself is “hiding the truth” is nonsense. Certainly, if Assange were to be found guilty by a fair legal process, then I should think people would expect him to step down from Wikileaks, and the organisation would carry on, possibly with a new public representative.

    I’m interested in what @SCM says, since I think she is arguing from a feminist perspective, and although I think she gets the balance wrong, Assange supporters do need to answer the kinds of points she makes. She argues well and I am quite willing to believe she is genuine. You on the other hand make daft assertions about there being a “new Wikileaks” that is “a smokescreen of lies”. This is so baseless that even the Establishment right-wingers (Aaronovitch et al) wouldn’t try that in the MSM – which makes me wonder how much of a disinterested seeker of truth and justice you really are.

  171. Craig, I applaud your stance and commend you for having the courage of your convictions. I too will also make a complaint about the manner in which you were treated on Newsnight. Next time though you’ll have to adopt a Galloway persona and demolish your opponents because Esler and Brown did not respect your gentlemanly demeanour.

    At least now Esler has shown his true colours – along with the rest of the British media establishment in their campaign of disinformation against Assange – a man who has not been charged or convicted of any crimes. Sensible people will now look elsewhere for their news content because the British media have demonstrated their disingenuousness for all to see.

  172. Granny Graham

    25 Aug, 2012 - 9:55 am

    I thought you did very well to maintain your composure, Craig. My impression watching the interview was that Joan Smith’s (and Esler’s) aggression and appeals to emotion were a cover for the fact that she wasn’t very informed about the case while you were.

    The program seemed more like a propagandistic stunt than journalism.

  173. The evil of it all defies description. It’s a total setup from start to finish against Julian. There’s not a sceric of truth in any of it – so obviously Julian isn’t going to even mention it during his balcony speech last Sunday.

    Appropriate action needs to be taken to have the Swedish authorities withdraw any reason to require Julian to return to Sweden – and state unequivocally that there was insufficient evidence to suggest any wrongdoing whatsoever by Julian – and as a consequence he is free to travel to Ecuador without let or hindrance by anyone – in Sweden – in Europe – or – in the U.K.

    For the authorities in the U.K. – or Sweden to pursue this matter further will only add additional substance to the crimes committed by the U.S. & U.K. governments and political leaders as referred to in – #unspeakableevil@TheGlobalFund. In 4 parts. View in HD.

  174. I was prepared to think we had a polarising debate here, playing to deep seated ‘idealist’ versus’ realist’ attitudes towards whistle-blowing. I thought this showed itself in the way both sides to this debate refused to listen to one another’s points. But the deafness is becoming very one-sided, not to say very wilful, and I’m finding it hard now to say where it all comes from.

    Those opposed to Assange (I feel) thought they had him in a trap he couldn’t talk his way out of. His escape to the Ecuadorian embassy infuriated them, so there followed phase two, which involved journalists gloating over the fact he had made a prisoner of himself in the embassy. How long can it be, however, before it dawns on all disinterested parties that the sheer scale of the UK operation there – and its enormous cost – simply cannot be explained as a reaction to what even the Swedes call a ‘minor rape’ accusation.

    Craig, you are hugely experienced in international affairs, so tell me if by claiming we are obliged to honour the Swedish EAW (European Arrest Warrant) we haven’t already demonstrated a way out of the current impasse. We in the UK now want Julien Assange on charges of skipping bail, and this is second call to the Swedish rape charge. So can’t we propose, to Assange and Sweden, that Assange is returned to Sweden in response to their EAW, accompanied by an EAW from us in respect of the bail charges? That way, he would have to be returned to the UK by the Swedes, after they had finished with him, and that obligation would take priority over any demands from the USA for his extradition from Sweden on other counts – wouldn’t it?

    Surely that would protect Assange from the onward extradition he fears? And would allow both Sweden and the UK to do what they claim is their duty? We would also, as a kind of a bonus, gain some insight into whether the Swedish rape charges were a set-up or not. But, of course, I may totally misunderstand the system…

  175. @Colin:

    So can’t we propose, to Assange and Sweden, that Assange is returned to Sweden in response to their EAW, accompanied by an EAW from us in respect of the bail charges? That way, he would have to be returned to the UK by the Swedes, after they had finished with him, and that obligation would take priority over any demands from the USA for his extradition from Sweden on other counts – wouldn’t it?

    Interesting, but I think you over-estimate the honesty and fair-play of the British Establishment. They have little interest in protecting Assange, and much to lose if they anger the Americans; if the US gets him via Sweden, the UK will look relatively blameless whilst having quietly assisted the American extradition deliberately. For the most part, the UK doesn’t care how much the policing around the Embassy costs, since Assange is a valuable asset wanted by our transatlantic ally.

  176. John, thanks so much for replying. I think you are probably right, which is why I try, in all the ways I can think of, to propose it to them via public forums – if only because that way the ‘establishment’ would have to explain why they refuse to consider a reasonable way forward.

    It’s one thing saying our law or Swedish law doesn’t allow such and such, but this proposal is to use the EAW device (that they say can’t be messed with) right back at them, so they can’t say it’s impossible. I’m not skilled in PR, alas, but I’m trying my best.

  177. Arnold Bocklin

    1 Sep, 2012 - 11:41 am

    @Jon:

    You’re assuming he’s guilty even before he’s been charged or convicted?

    True, he hasn’t yet been convicted. But ask yourself this: would an innocent man act as Assange has acted? Would an innocent man go to such deranged extremes to avoid a trial? Would an innocent man manufacture such preposterous smokescreen of lies about a “threat” from the US? If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck…

    his opponents

    I’m not an Assange opponent, I’d call myself a supporter. But if you support someone, that doesn’t mean that you necessarily support all their stupid, selfish actions; sometimes tough love is required.

    Assange is actively harming himself and wikileaks with his nonsensical behaviour. The best thing for himself and for wikileaks would be for him to walk out of the embassy right now, go to Sweden, go on trial and serve his time.

    There is no “new Wikileaks”

    If you can’t see the enormous, gaping discontinuity between wikileaks past activities and it’s present ones, then… The phrase “wilful blindness” comes to mind.

  178. @Arnold:

    would an innocent man act as Assange has acted?

    When pushed to the extremes, yes. I believe he has been pushed there. (Aside, I think it is evident he has a number of character flaws, and isn’t as good at dealing with the cynical media as he thinks. I don’t know whether fleeing bail was the best strategic decision, but as Craig says, it is Assange’s life, and therefore his decision).

    The best thing for himself and for wikileaks would be for him to walk out of the embassy right now, go to Sweden, go on trial and serve his time [my emphasis].

    This is why I suspect you’re not here in good faith – you openly and repeatedly declare his guilt before a trial that you find so thoroughly just. I’m not sure your determination of Assange’s guilt is at all compatible with declaring yourself a supporter of Wikileaks, since I’d imagine all supporters of Wikileaks would be pretty strong on the legal principle of the presumption of innocence.

    If you can’t see the enormous, gaping discontinuity between wikileaks past activities and it’s present ones

    No, I can’t, but do explain it to me. For what it’s worth, the current drama is between Assange, the US, the UK, and Sweden, and specifically not Wikileaks. Wikileaks isn’t on trial here, and I am sure it would continue *if* Assange can no longer continue as the public face of the project.

  179. @SCM – any response? I should be genuinely interested in your reply, since feminism is something upon which I am trying to shape my perspectives.

  180. Colin Davis

    1 Sep, 2012 - 2:32 pm

    I know I’m repeating myself (29th August 2.20 p.m., above) but there IS a way out of the Assange impasse. It runs as follows (and I’ll roughly quote myself):

    ”The Swedes have issued an EAW (European Arrest Warrant) for Assange’s extradition on their rape charge. The UK says that warrant binds us.

    Therefore propose (to Sweden and to Assange) that we return him to Sweden ACCOMPANIED by an EAW of our own, demanding his return to the UK on the charge we have against him, that of jumping bail.

    The Swedes will then be obliged – in the same way as we say we are – to return Assange to the UK on the bail charge, the minute they have finished with him on the rape charge; and, because it came first, their obligation to us will take precedence over any subsequent demand for his onward extradition to the USA.”

    Every party to this ‘disagreement’ claims to be acting reasonably, and that they can do nothing other than what they are already doing. My proposal suggests that this is not true: one (or more, or possibly all) of the parties is being dishonest. So let the honest party propose the solution to the others, loudly and publicly, and their bluff will be called.

    The ‘disagreement’ may continue, but the endless speculation as to who is genuine and who has got an agenda will be at an end, because we will all know who is who.

  181. What right do people have to continue to use JA’s name in association with allegations of r-pe when he is supposed to be afforded the presumption of innocence? Every time someone names him in public discussion of this matter they are effectively contributing to the ongoing defamation of this possibly innocent man. If he is innocent, then he is a victim. So what does anyone have to say about *his* right to anonymity? Absolutely nothing.

    @Colin Davis – good idea + analysis.

  182. David Landy

    5 Sep, 2012 - 7:55 am

    “And all the manufactured fury at my naming Anna Ardin might well lead people to research her claims and behaviour, which would be a good thing.”

    It certainly is – that’s exactly how I found this website, and all the really useful information in it…

    :-)

Powered By Wordpress | Designed By Ridgey | Produced by Tim Ireland | Hosted by Expathos