No idea how many here are following the story, I know a couple are but I think most aren't. If you don't know what the latest on this is, two months
ago the UK court ruled that Assange needed to be extradited to Sweden to answer more questions relating to his "rape" charges. In response, Assange
jumped his bail and ran to the Ecuador embassay in London which is a rather tiny apartment. He has been holed up there for 2 months now while seeking
asylum claiming that the whole thing is a pretext to extradite him to the US where he'll disappear in guantanamo or a similar prison facing torture or
simply be killed as many of our politicians have publicly spoken out that they want him executed.
Ecuador has agreed to turn him over to Sweden if they give assurances that he won't be sent to the US. Sweeden refuses. On top of that documents came
out recently that showed the Obama adminstration was putting considerable pressure on the UK to make sure he's apprehended and turned over to Sweden
(and the US has a great extradition treaty with Sweeden, almost anyone either country asks for gets turned over). Ecuador has also offered to allow
Sweden into the embassy to question Assange and Sweden has refused. They've also refused to ask over telecommunications equipment.
Now, Ecuador has announced that they're granting Assange diplomatic asylum on the basis that if he's handed over to Sweden he will likely face
extradition and execution in the US. The UK response to this has been interesting. They've massed a bunch of cops outside of the building (300 at last
count), and have also placed cops inside of the embassy along all corridors in the building as the connecting halls don't count as foreign territory.
Last night a military special operations team was sent into the building, sneaking in through the fire escape, presumably to apprehend Assange.
However, there's a huge mass of protestors outside and they got caught.
In addition to all of this the UK has said that if Ecuador doesn't turn Assange over they're going to storm the embassy and take him. This is a huge
deal, if the UK shows they won't respect another countries embassy when it's not convenient they face many of their embassies across the world being
shut down. Most Latin American countries have responded saying that if the UK storms the embassy all UK embassies in their countries will be shut down
and corporate contracts (including a lot of oil) will be canceled. In response to this the UK backed up on their statement and said they don't
recognize the Vienna convention (despite using it to defend their own embassies many times in the past) and won't storm the embassy. Instead they're
going to revoke it's diplomatic status and storm it when it's just another building. Effectively closing down the Ecuador embassy.
I'll say one thing for Assange, he's great at stirring up drama. This whole attempt to apprehend him is bullcrap in the first place though. To start
with, the authorities in Sweden have already questioned him, twice. They want to do so again saying the previous questioning isn't good enough because
it's a new investigation (the "rape" case has been thrown out twice). Next, it's called rape but it isn't really rape. They're using a definition of
rape that's really loose. Basically it comes down to the fact that a woman had unprotected sex with him, continued to have sex with him (but with
condoms) many times afterwards, and later when she asked him to get an STD test for the time without a condom he refused. In Sweden that counts as
rape. In the case with the other woman, he had sex with her then a week later (after they spent a week together) she decided that he wasn't as amazing
as she initially thought and felt that he mislead her about how amazing of a person he was and that had she known him as well at the end of the week
as at the beginning of the week she wouldn't have had sex with him.
Both women admit to these details in their rape cases, and they aren't even seeking prosecution. Instead it's Sweden itself trying to prosecute the
rape case and the cases have been thrown out twice in the past (by women prosecutors) now it's a man prosecuting it and he says it's a grievous sex
crime against all women and Assange needs to be brought to justice.
edit on 19-8-2012 by Vrill because: (no reason given)