Julian Assange of Wikileaks, and Bradley Manning, an American soldier who’s been accused of a leaky conscience and is currently in prison in Virginia, are being ruthlessly persecuted by a Coalition of the Desperately Willing more impressive than the one that invaded Iraq. Assange is also being accused of rape. Many governments seem to be giving unprecedented attention to the felony of rape. I can’t recall another suspect being pursued with such spectacular ferocity and sweating foreheads. Can you?
Whether Assange had indeed raped another human being is not for me to speculate. Most people have given their verdict one way or the other anyway. However, he has indeed forcibly screwed a very self-righteous system, damaging its verbose facade on all sorts of inviolable principles: Human rights, government integrity, political openness, accountability, and freedom of information and expression. He has flashed light at a dark corner, exposing hypocrisy without consent. I can understand why those unveiled feel assaulted naked - feeling on the receiving end of a molestation for a change. Furthermore, if the charge against him is fabricated, like many cynical people conjecture, then Mr. Assange should in addition be guilty of having indirectly defiled the pretence of the rule of law and respect for justice. Unforgivable, really, therefore: Crucify him! Crucify him!
I have never met a rapist; but if I were a movie director casting for one, Julian Assange has very little chance. I might pick him for an assassin, a hacker, or math professor with a turbulent home life, but rapist . . . ? Ah, I might pick him for a Nobel laureate though. Why not? In comparison with Al Gore, uh, Dalai Lama, uh, Obama and, uh, uh, Liu Xiao Bo . . . I’d find it much easier to compose Mr. Assange’s nomination. Before downloading a Peace Prize application, however, we need to make sure he stays alive. On that, all we can do is pray and plead: “We ask the United States to respect the freedom of information and other miscellaneous nobel principles that they hold sacred, and stop using their national might to persecute a single individual (weighing, what, 170 lbs.?) for putting some of these principles into action. Finally, Mr. Assange and Manning have the prayer of the international community, mumble jumble. God bless. Mumble jumble.”