Tag Archives: julian assange

Some Interesting Links On Politics

John Pilger recently wrote an excellent article, Getting Julian Assange: An Untold Story, about Julian Assange on his website. The article was endorsed by Assange himself on Twitter. It tells the story about how Julian Assange has been made a political prisoner. The article was written in response to the closing of an investigation against him by Sweden. Although this is positive, the United Kingdom police has declared that it will still arrest Assange if he steps out of the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

Chelsea Manning was released from prison on May 17, after Barack Obama reduced her punishment. Glenn Greenwald put up a fantastic article on The Intercept telling us how she is one of the biggest heroes of our generation. Greenwald says:

Ever since Chelsea Manning was revealed as the whistleblower responsible for one of the most important journalistic archives in history, her heroism has been manifest. She was the classic leaker of conscience, someone who went at the age of 20 to fight in the Iraq War believing it was noble, only to discover the dark reality not only of that war but of the U.S. government’s actions in the world generally: war crimes, indiscriminate slaughter, complicity with high-level official corruption, and systematic deceit of the public.

The recent terrorist attack in Manchester has again raised the question about what the root causes of terrorism are. There was a conversation last year between Edward Snowden, Noam Chomsky and Glenn Greenwald on this. The discussion—although titled, A Discussion On Privacy—has an interesting digression on terrorism. The YouTube video with the link to that part of the discussion is here. It’s far from the lazy explanation usually given, i.e., religion.

Glenn Greenwald On The New Yorker‘s Admission

Since the U.S. elections results, the media has been hysterically claiming that Hillary Clinton lost the election because of “Russian hacking”. This is mainly to suffocate the debate on why Clinton really lost. A lot of journalists leaning Hillary Clinton before the election do this Russian hacking thing regularly either on TV, or on Twitter or in their articles. Even Paul Krugman has been mentioning Vladimir Putin’s name in almost every article since Nov 9.

There is of course little truth to all this. The main reason this story has attention is that Julian Assange’s WikiLeaks leaked emails of John Podesta, a former White House chief of staff. It’s true that Russia tries to hack the U.S. government servers regularly and hence it’s become easier for people promoting the Russian hacking story to claim that WikiLeaks’ source is the Russian government. But nobody has given any proof of this, yet.

But instead of stopping, the hysteria keeps continuing. Recently The New Yorker published a 13,000-word cover story (Mar 6, 2017) on Trump and Russia/Putin. 

The online version has this header image:

But toward the end of the long essay, The New Yorker makes this admission:

No reasonable analyst believes that Russia’s active measures in the United States and Europe have been the dominant force behind the ascent of Trump and nationalist politicians in Europe. Resentment of the effects of globalization and deindustrialization are far more important factors.

So despite so much hysteria, the magazine is conceding to the effect of globalization and de-industrialization on workers.

Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept has a nice critique of The New Yorker‘s cover story. He says:

As long as the Russia story enables pervasive avoidance of self-critique – one of the things humans least like to do – it will continue to resonate no matter its actual substance and value.

And quoting the cover story’s reference to globalization and deindustrialization, he says:

As Even The New Yorker Admits™, the primary reason for Trump, for Brexit, and for growing right-wing über-nationalism throughout Europe is that prevailing neoliberal policies have destroyed the economic security and future of hundreds of millions of people, rendering them highly susceptible to scapegoating and desperate, in a nothing-to-lose sort of way, for any type of radical change, no matter how risky or harmful that change might be. But all of that gets to be ignored, all of the self-reckoning is avoided, as long we get ourselves to believe that some omnipotent foreign power is behind it all.

Donald Trump has to be resisted but a strong alternative would not be neoliberalism.

The Full Julian Assange Interview With John Pilger

Recently, Bloomberg’s Mark Halpern in a short clip managed to get an answer from Julian Assange to the question, “what aspect of the recent leaks by WikiLeaks has the media under-reported” and it was, “Everything”.

Russia Today has released the full video (link at the bottom) of a recent Julian Assange interview with John Pilger. In that, Assange talks about corruptions of the Clinton Foundation and how it has been responsible for terrorist funding. Assange also defends against the charges on him by various others that WikiLeaks is trying to put Donald Trump into the White House.

Hillary Clinton is a leader for neoliberals and neocons. She pretends to look progressive but is far from it. She’s for free trade and balanced budgets and a war hawk. She started sounding progressive and lefty in order to compete against Bernie Sanders.

Julian Assange has exposed Hillary Clinton, although the media tries to pretend otherwise with a “meh”, everytime WikiLeaks releases new emails in the past 30 days. But it’s not the case: Democrats and their supporters are fearful of WikiLeaks as can be seen by a Tweet now deleted tweet by Matthew Yglesias in which he accuses WikiLeaks of trying to side with Donald Trump:

Report on the documents all you like, but the tweets show Wikileaks is a pro-Trump disinformation operation not a transparency group.

As Mark Halpern says in the short clip linked above, you have an Australian guy working for an Icelandic organization, in the Ecuadorian Embassy in the United Kingdom striking fear in the heart of the Democratic presidential candidate in the United States – that’s one hell of a story. I should also add, effectively detained by the Swedish government.

The Julian Assange interview with John Pilger is at Russia Today’s YouTube channel. Transcripts are available at John Pilger’s site.


Julian Assange with Embassy Cat. Source: Embassy Cat’s Instagram page.

Noam Chomsky On Free Trade Agreements

Julian Assange is a probably the third most important figure in the current US elections. I came across a video from earlier this year in which Noam Chomsky defends Julian Assange.

“Free trade” puts a tight reign on the rise in output of economies, takes away a sovereignty from nations and is anti-democratic. Not only that, from the very start, free trade agreements are reached in the most undemocratic ways. Around 2/3rd of this nine-minute video, Chomsky explains how this is so. First, the documents are secretive. Then they are handed over to governments for a yes/no vote, which Chomsky says means they should vote “yes”.

It’s also one of the most important speeches on politics and power.


Julian Assange with Noam Chomsky. Source: WikiLeaks

Julian Assange On TPP, TTIP And TISA

This is nice video of Julian Assange speaking via teleconference on TPP, TISA and TISA with philosopher Slavoj Žižek and former Greek finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis in a conference organized by Southbank Centre on Nov 16, 2015.


click to see the video on YouTube

The relevant part starts at 1 hour, 15 minutes, 22 seconds.


[TTP, TTIP and TISA] are a part of a new global economic partition of the world. It is – I think – the most ambitious, concrete plan since the creation of the European Union, since possibly the creation of the WTO, although it goes much further.

That organized plan … and it’s the largest plan and will lock in, permanently will lock in a more radical form of neoliberalism into Europe, into South East Asia, into the United States … and must be intellectually engaged with not just left to the vulgarities of whether and how market prices change and how people move.


Julian Assange On The Mire Of Politically Distorted Language

To radically shift regime behavior we must think clearly and boldly for if we have learned anything, it is that regimes do not want to be changed. We must think beyond those who have gone before us, and discover technological changes that embolden us with ways to act in which our forebears could not. Firstly we must understand what aspect of government or neocorporatist behavior we wish to change or remove. Secondly we must develop a way of thinking about this behavior that is strong enough carry us through the mire of politically distorted language, and into a position of clarity. Finally must use these insights to inspire within us and others a course of ennobling, and effective action


Picture source: “Embassy Cat”‘s Instagram page.