Mar 17, 2011

Grey areas reshape the Assange debate

A popular new social movement in Sweden, dedicated to exploring the "grey areas" of s-xual life, has been accused of being a campaign directed at Julian Assange.

Guy Rundle — Correspondent-at-large

Guy Rundle


A popular new social movement in Sweden, dedicated to exploring the “grey areas” of sexual life, has been accused of being a campaign directed at Julian Assange, with tweets between the organisers talking of naming the movement after one of his accusers, and coaching each other to “keep the story close to the Assange situation”.

The tweets seem to contradict claims by the organisers that the movement was only inspired by the Assange situation, and had no focus on it, and the leading figures are all well-connected friends of Assange case complainant Anna Ardin.

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10 thoughts on “Grey areas reshape the Assange debate

  1. Richard Wilson

    Co-intel for sure!

  2. Rod Taylor

    I’m an Assange supporter and I find it fascinating to have the events surrounding his case examined in detail but I think you go too far in your breathless claim that these people are “Twitter friends” and therefore that means there’s a conspiracy. I follow and am variously followed by people like Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd, Malcolm Turnbull, etc. but I would be horrified if someone described any of them as my “friend”. Following someone doesn’t mean you’re friends or you agree with them, just that you are willing to listen to what they say. Journalists seem to follow each other to see what everyone else is saying so it stands to reason they would all be linked via Twitter.

  3. Scott

    I don’t know where GR is going with all these pro-assange conspiracy stories…Twitter feeds! Lobby groups! Secret links between people! Please.
    Informing people of the Swedish law and various scenerios that may result in a sex crime is a good thing isn’t it? For both males and females. Maybe it was set up to stop the whole episode happening again. I’m sure the complaintants wished it had not happened.

  4. arbed

    Rod Taylor/Scott

    I’m afraid you haven’t quite grasped the full story here. One of the core 12 who started the PrataOmDet campaign on Twitter also acted as a witness for the prosecution – ie she was at the Crayfish party and she’s a CLOSE friend of Ardin’s. Go to the Rixstep website – they’ve got the full original Twitter feed. Once you read it, it’s quite obvious it’s a deliberate orchestration.,01.shtml

  5. figaropravda

    Rod Taylor: Members at the Flashback forum have mapped out the relationships between the participants in great detail, and many of them are close personal friends of the accuser. They are Facebook friends, they appear together on photographs, go to parties together and comment on each others blogs.

    Swedish newspapers published several dozens of articles by these friends of the accuser. Most were totally unrelated stories of sexual abuse by an anonymous perpetrator. Yet they all linked their stories to the Assange case, and most featured his photograph.

    The campaign very successfully reshaped the public’s perception of the Assange case.

  6. molok

    Prataomdet contacted Jessica Valenti and she had no doubts about what the campaign was all about. From JVs blog:

    “Johanna Palmström, an amazing young Swedish feminist I met in Denmark last year, alerted me to a Twitter campaign that’s started up in defense of one of Assange’s accusers. She’s being smeared and mistreated on Twitter and in Swedish social media spaces, so feminists there have started a campaign, #prataomdet – in English, #talkaboutit. From Johanna:

    “In the wake of the doubt and skepticism directed toward the women who filed charges against Julian Assange, journalist Johanna Koljonen recently tweeted openly and intimately about drawing lines, gray areas, and crystal clear violations in sexual situations. Hundreds followed Koljonen’s example on Twitter under the hashtag #prataomdet (”#talkaboutit”). As a result of this debate, several Swedish magazines, newspapers and other media outlets are publishing pieces on the subject. Something is going to change. We are going to dare to #talkaboutit.”

    Find out more about the campaign here, and please consider tweeting your support!”

  7. Dr Stuart Jeanne Bramhall

    Sure looks like a smoking gun to me, the missing link (along with evidence that Bush’s con artist friend Karl Rove also has ties to these people – that proves Michael Moore’s and Naomi Wolf’s original claim that Assange was framed.

    What gets me is that this particular set-up serves two ugly purposes. In addition to demonizing (and possibly jailing) Assange on frivolous charges, it has, yet again, caused deep fissures between American feminists and other progressives. The whole Wikileaks/feminist controversy has smelled like classic Cointelpro tactics from the beginning.

    The use of identity politics to divide the progressive movement dates back to Gloria Steinem’s stint with the CIA in the 1960s. I write about my own close encounter with some of her agents in my recent memoir THE MOST REVOLUTIONARY ACT: MEMOIR OF AN AMERICAN REFUGEE ( I currently live in exile in New Zealand

  8. Elan

    PILLOCK: I clicked on your link. It’s fair and reasonable to take a look at the hordes rushing to defend two so-called feminists. (Who have successfully dragged the feminist cause back several decades!)

    Six posts: 17Dec-25Dec. (I’m sure you can provide the PTD link where there will be other supporters of Ardin. That is OK. But it won’t be in meltdown, simply because there are machinations that are quite correctly being questioned.

    Assange may well be guilty of that if which he stands accused. The evidence to date is spurious at best.

    Feminists are NOT fools!

    This matter would have brought them to global howling protest. Why hasn’t it?? Why would global feminists largely disassociate themselves from these women and their supporters?

    Because feminists are not fooled.

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