Category Archives: Rights

Out for a night to campaign for Julian Assange

By Joe Montero

Moving through Melbourne on an evening with a group of campaigners drumming up support for Julian Assange, was a great experience. It showed that there is a lot of support around town for the journalist, editor and founder of WikiLeaks.

This was an action supported by WikiLeaks.

A small truck was loaded up with a big sound system, which could blast music and speeches through the streets led the cavalcade. Behind this, there was a truck with a billboard, calling for Julian Assange to be brought home. Behind that several cars. All moved along in a slow procession. Beside this, on the footpaths, walked groups of people, holding banners and signs, and talking to people along the way.

The whole thing had an air of a carnival. It worked too. Being a Friday night, pubs, restaurants and other venues on the commercial strips were loaded with customers. Many came out to see. People leaned out of upstairs windows. Many brought out their mobile phones and took photos. Quite a few, no doubt, to send along on social media, so others would know about what was going on.

Hardly anyone came out with a negative attitude. Although one or two drivers showed a little frustration, the overwhelming majority understood, and quite a few honked their support.

The whole experience left a clear impression, about how Julian’s home town feel about the matter.

The first major street was Brunswick’s Sydney Road. The journey has begun from near the northern end, and when it reached near the southernmost end, there was a stop a near busy a pub, to get a bit more time to talk to the many people there.

It was here that the police suddenly arrived in their blue light flashing cars. They came from all directions.

They wanted the convoy to go and free up the traffic jam. The big number of police was an over reaction, and the only thing it achieved, was to draw even more people to the spot. And this provided an opportunity to talk to even more people than would have been possible without the police.

After dispersing and regrouping, the convoy headed for Fitzroy and to Brunswick Street. The same story there. The extent of support was fantastic. Then it was off to Smith Street, where there were even more people about. The vehicles parked outside a pub again, with a crowd inside and outside.

Once again, The police came from all directions. The pub crowd booed them as they approached, and showed clear support for the pro-Assange campaigners.

The cavalcade broke up again. Police cars followed vehicles down side streets. After a time this regrouping, it was decided to call it a night. It was hitting midnight. To continue would risk arrests. The point had been made anyway.

The experience showed that with a bit of creativity, it is possible to find novel ways to reach a bigger audience.

Julian Assange is still facing the British legal system, which is hearing an application to have him extradited to the United States. to face charges of espionage. He faces a total of 175 years imprisonment. More charges are likely. For what? For telling the world about the wrongdoing powerful political and corporate leaders.

They are afraid of being further exposed. This is the reason why they are doing everything they can to shut him up.

An effort had been made to divert attention, and damage Julian Assange’s reputation with a set-up, over alleged sexual misconduct in Sweden. It turns out that there is no case and the Swedish authorities have dropped it.

Now the truth is out in the open and starkly naked, without a sideshow throwing in confusion. Collusion between the governments of the United States, Great Britain and Australia is being revealed.

Julian Assange is an Australian citizen, and his treatment at the hands of this government, and we must add to this previous Labor governments, is nothing short of a scandal.

Australia is seeing the rise of inhumanity under the name of the law, alongside the obvious subservience of political hacks to Uncle Sam. It seems like Australian governments must be told how to think and act.

Many Australians are saying they want an end to this, and the call for the freeing and bringing Julian Assange home is coming from more voices. His supporters around Australia, are working to build the campaign until he is brought home.

Last Friday night was an installment for what is coming.

US Marines in Darwin could drag Australia into war

From the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN)

A national peace group claims that the USA marines stationed in Darwin could drag Australia into war. The claim follows lengthy correspondence between IPAN, the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network, and a succession of Prime Ministers and Ministers of Defence. Continue reading US Marines in Darwin could drag Australia into war

Standing up for Julian Assange in Melbourne

By Joe Montero

On Friday 14 June, about 30 people arrived at 90 Collins street in Melbourne, to call on the British government to stop persecuting Julian Assange and, and for the Australian to prevent his extradition the United States and bring him back home to Australia.

 

Photo by Joe Montero: Gathering out the front of 90 Collins street

The location is the building housing the British Vice Consul’s office. The crowd and banners outside caused considerable disruption to business.

This marks a growing movement within Australia, backing the founder of WikiLeaks. As the process in the United Kingdom moves forward, this movement is likely to grow in numbers and impact.

It is not only that a wrong is being committed here and more people are starting to see through the smear campaign that has been carried out over the lest seven years. There’s a growing realisation that there is a connection between this and the rise of persecutions in a number of countries and in Australia.

On Friday it was an opportunity to talk about all of this to people in the city centre.

Earlier on, the event was marred by police action to take down a banner, which culminated with the arrest of two people. To witnesses this was clearly a case of over reaction and may have even been the result of politically inspired direction from higher up.

Photo by Joe Montero: Police make an arrest

It is was this it backfired and drew attention to what was going on, as well as bringing home that Australia moving in the direction of autocracy and increasing subversion of basic rights. This trend must be fought against.

Photo by Joe Montero: More police sent in

A point clearly made was that Julian Assange has been hunted, because he is seen as a major threat to some very rich and powerful individuals and groups. They fear exposure.

Julian Assange and WikiLeaks committed the crime of exposing the massive scale of corruption and tax evasion shown in the panama Papers. They also exposed the lengths to which political leaders will go to lie, in order to justify military action against other countries.

None have been more guilty than those in the United States, Great Britain and Australia. What they have done constitutes crimes against humanity.

The banner that led to the arrests and the two arrested

The combination of these crimes and the massive level of corruption, is the reason why they have been so intent on conspiring to get Assange and destroy WikiLeaks.

They have worked hard to dirty his reputation, using false claims that he has mistreated women, and even public speculation of hygiene habits and accusations that he failed to feed a cat.

Together, it has served the purpose of making Julian Assange look like a person unworthy of any sympathy.

The application by the United States to have him extradited is being is underway, and there is a real chance that he will be handed over, to face a mockery of a trial, on suspect espionage charges for charges, which carry 170 years or more of prison.

Despite his health problems, Julian Assange has made it clear that he intends to continue fighting with everything he’s got. By doing this, he champions our own right to speak. Can we do anything less?

Julian Assange campaigner Jacob Grech, speaks about Assange and the role the Federal Police are playing in the attack on the right to speak.

Video from Anthony Snowden]

The real issues for this election are whether or not the money is spent on the top end of town and everyone else is made to pay for it

By Joe Montero

On the eve of this year’s federal election, we should note the claims made during the campaign. This especially applies to those concerning the affordability of services and that ongoing matter of the budget surplus. Continue reading The real issues for this election are whether or not the money is spent on the top end of town and everyone else is made to pay for it