Dec 10, 2010
Crikey readers have their say.
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[Justin Pettizini writes: It is not true that WikiLeaks has done nothing illegal. In whatever western countries it has published US cables it has breached copyright law.]
Next time Justin, spend a few milliseconds on checking your own incorrect “sweeping generalizations”; Googling copyright AND Assange would have turned up this yesterday: (the article is probably the most detailed treatment of this issue you will find).
Justice Department Studies WikiLeaks Prosecution
By CHARLIE SAVAGE Published: December 7, 2010
Intellectual property law criminalizes the unauthorized reproduction of certain kinds of commercial information, like trade secrets or copyrighted music, films and software files. But those categories do not appear to cover government documents, which by law cannot be copyrighted and for which there is no ordinary commercial market.]
[Niall Clugston writes: One of the major Australian casualties of WikiLeaks has to be Kevin Rudd.]
Get a grip, Niall. The publicity (if it has been noticed anywhere outside Australia) will do Rudd no harm whatsoever. We cannot say the same about Gillard and Macfarlane who look like right prats. Rudd, presumably by being outside the party mind control, is one of the few government ministers speaking some sense on Wikileaks and this cable nonsense, by correctly laying it at the feet of the hapless dumb Americans who allowed more than 2 million citizens to read 250,000 diplomatic cables.
And do you seriously believe the arbiter of smart diplomacy or analysis are those same Americans? Anyone willing to buy into an American opinion on any of this, or world events, is beyond help. Just like most Americans they must be in an irony-free zone.
Heaven’s Niall you are odd. The comments were made by two of Dubya’s best buddies who were pissed off because Rudd kept saying Iraq was the most dangerous foreign policy since Vietnam.
If Dubya’s mates hated Rudd he gets my vote.
And he has defended Assange when the gutless cowards McClelland and Gillard will not.
Funny that just last month our high court said they were acting unlawfully locking up refugees outside the law.
Oops, in my 1.38 pm comment I meant Robert McClelland the AG, not Macfarlane.
Good post Marilyn. I also believe that unlike the others, Rudd has looked a bit into the future and seen where this is leading: freedom to Assange and vindication of Wikileaks. Any embarrassment is mostly American, which they richly deserve.
Kathleen I didn’t dismiss three of the four charges. Based on the expert opinion of Mary Heath, whom I quoted at length, I suggested that three of the charges looked very difficult to get a conviction from (as would the fourth charge of rape, involving physical force).
Secondly I pointed out that two of the charges were ‘ofredande’ – annoyance charges, a misdemeanour in Swedish law. These were the only accusations that were left in place when the initial charges were dismissed.
Thirdly, I did argue that a law that takes a situation as ‘he said, she said’ as a morning glory tackle rub between two adults in a bed in a sexual relationship pushes the law so far into the fluid relations of everyday life that it is repressive to such a degree that it amounts to a net social negative
Fourthly, I agree that character and sexual history should play no part in assessing a case. But we’re not required to leave our brains at the door. When you have a complainant who has:
– been a gender equality officer at university
-published a how-to revenege guide on lovers, including ‘lying’ in order to get the law involved
– has attempted to delete tweets from the week after the alleged incidents occurred
– has made a statement to the press saying there was no physical coercion involved in her accusations, and then producing a charge – the only charge that might guarantee extradition on its own – that suggests violent coercion.
together with a process that is being run by a former Swedish political heavy, and proceeeds without publicly available evidence everytime Wikileaks hits a new stage in its ‘cablegate’ release, then I suggest that with Naomi Klein and many others, we are allowed to think critically about what is going on. It is not the complainant’s sexual etc behaviour that causes serious doubt about the charges in a charged political atmosphere – it is her juridical behaviour, the celebration of lying and revenge, and the attempt to destroy potential evidence.
I wouldn’t get involved in it either, normally. But the fact that it may make it possible for Assange to end up for fifty years in a US supermax prison prompts many of us to wade into such matters and make an assessment.
actually an emendation – it is not the mere fact of being a gender equality officer that raises suspicions – it is that in combination with the publication of a revenge guide that uses all the knowledge that a gender equality officer would ordinarily have at hand to pursue legitimate cases.
Rudd is looking like a level-headed statesman in relation to Assange. Unlike Gillard and McClelland who, in addressing the situation, engaged their mouths prior to their brains. Frankly, I’d LOVE to see them move to cancel Assange’s passport, what a nasty shock they’d get.
Gillard hasn’t been savvy at judging the mood or focus of the Oz electorate and she’s not getting any better at it.