Writingspress statementsFREE JULIAN ASSANGE! HANDS OFF WIKILEAKS!

FREE JULIAN ASSANGE! HANDS OFF WIKILEAKS!

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By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson
International League of Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS)
10 December 2010

The International League of People’s Struggle (ILPS) condemns in the strongest terms the unjust arrest of Julian Assange in the United Kingdom and the assault on Wikileaks by the US, UK and Australian governments, giant US financial corporations and powerful US neoconservative politicians.

Assange was arrested and jailed without bail last December 8 in the UK on the basis of a warrant issued by Sweden after two women accused him of spurious sex crimes. The website Wikileaks is being harassed and sabotaged as Paypal, Mastercard, Visa, EveryDNS.net, and Amazon dropped it. There is a proposal from the US Congress to designate Wikileaks as a terrorist organization. Assange is in fact the target of prominent North American politicians publicly urging his assassination. The US is pressuring Scotland Yard to extradite him to face espionage charges.

These are clearly ultrareactionary assaults in the wake of Cablegate, Wikileaks’ release to the public domain of an unprecedented trove of more than a quarter million secret US State Department cables from around the world that expose the vile US imperialist designs against oppressed countries, rival capitalist countries and even longstanding allies; and the previous release of thousands upon thousands of secret multimedia files from US military forces exposing criminal and bloody operations in the US wars of agression in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In targeting Wikileaks and Assange, the US imperialists and their acolytes have attacked the people’s right to freedom of expression and to the free flow of information; and freedom of the press. They have shown their utter disdain for transparency in governance and for holding public officials accountable.

The sex assault case against Assange is a direct result of covert official Western operations against his person, setting him up particularly in an insidious “honey trap”. One of the complainants has confirmed ties to the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

We contradict the claim that Assange and Wikileaks have violated any laws of the US or of other countries. The Cablegate exposes have proven that far from having an open political system, the US in pursuit of world hegemony systematicaly indulges in state secrecy to hide its criminal enterprises and acts from the world’s peoples who bear the brunt of suffering from these heinous crimes. The US imperialists are fearful that the people would rebel once they are made aware of these grievous crimes that amount to fascism.

The vicious attacks against Wikileaks form part of a broader US objective to foil the Internet as a potent tool of the peoples of the world against imperialist designs. Among the recent moves along this line are:

1. The US government’s unprecedented clampdown on at least 82 websites on the deceitful claim that these were distributing and selling illegal copyrighted works and counterfeit goods;

2. Proposed US laws to stifle freedom of expression on the Internet, like the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (COICA) internet censorship bill, that would allow the US Attorney General to censor the Internet in the name of copyright enforcement; and

3. The longstanding spin of US media supermonopolies since 9/11 on an “internet jihad” by al-Qaeda and its allied terrorist groups;

We laud Wikileaks for persevering to defy the powerful assault against it by pushing ahead with its steady public release of Cablegate information despite the unprecedented attacks. We also laud the corps of thousands of Wikileaks supporters for their multiple replication of the disputed contents of the website all over the World Wide Web. Similar acts of defiance have been made in the face of similar repressive acts against other websites. A US group of former CIA employees, Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence, has in fact given its annual award for integrity to Assange.

Indeed, let a thousand Wikileaks flourish! We call on conscience-stricken fellowmen in a position of doing so to blow the whistle on the crimes, shenanigans and nefarious schemes of imperialists and their cohorts by making use of Wikileaks and other similar tools available to the people. As US imperialism is beset by an unprecedented crisis, it will resort to ever more desperate measures to the detriment of humanity. To be a whistleblower against such criminal measures is completely justified.

We call for the immediate release of Assange and the dismissal of the trumped-up charges against him. We call on the member organizations of the ILPS and their friends to mount in their respective countries pickets at the US, UK and Australian embassies and at the offices of the corporations harassing Wikileaks as well as other related direct concerted actions to demand: Free Julian Assange! Hands off Wikileaks! No to Internet censorship, war, plunder and fascism! ##

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