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wikileaks front man arrested
12-07-2010, 07:57 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-07-2010, 08:40 PM by rsol.)
wikileaks front man arrested
Julian Assange, the public face of wikileaks just handed himself over to London police to face extradition to Sweden over an alleged rape. He will fight this for obvious reasons.

Now its gets interesting.....

and now...the news.....

Quote:"Its servers were attacked, its payment structure pulled, a bank account canceled -- and now in the latest blow to the controversial WikiLeaks website, founder Julian Assange was arrested today and is in custody in London under a Swedish arrest warrant.

The arrest of the elusive Assange will almost certainly raise questions about whether and how he might be prosecuted in the U.S. for the ongoing release of 250,000 sensitive State Department cables.

Assange, wanted for questioning under a Swedish arrest warrant for allegations he denies of rape, sexual molestation, and unlawful coercion in that country, turned himself in to London police this morning and was denied bail at his extradition hearing.

Assange's lawyers have said they will fight his extradition to Sweden, for fear he could be turned over to the United States. He is due to appear in court for his next hearing on December 14.

U.S. officials and lawmakers have widely denounced WikiLeaks’ massive document dumps, which follow the release of hundreds of thousands of sensitive documents relating to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who has been forced to lead damage control for diplomatic relations with world leaders, has called for “aggressive steps” to find and hold responsible those involved in the leaks.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder also said earlier this month that these steps are “not saber-rattling.” With the world watching on Monday, he said that he has authorized “significant” actions in the ongoing criminal investigation into the legality of the site. Holder did not indicate what they were, or ultimately which way he is leaning when it comes to bringing criminal charges against the site’s founder.

"National security of the United States has been put at risk," Holder said Monday. "The lives of people who work for the American people have been put at risk. The American people themselves have been put at risk by these actions that I believe are arrogant, misguided and ultimately not helpful in any way. We are doing everything that we can."

WikiLeaks insisted today that the site is operational and that Assange’s arrest would not change its operation or plans to release more documents in the coming days. "We will release more cables tonight as normal,” said a post today on WikiLeaks' Twitter account."

Quote:Whistleblower website Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who has been in virtual hiding in south-east London, has been arrested on a European arrest warrant by British police over alleged Swedish sexual assault claims. Assange, who appeared at a police station at 09.30 today by appointment, has been refused bail and will be remanded in custody until December 14 when a extradition hearing will take place. Wikileaks has vowed to continue with the publication of US diplomatic cables despite the arrest of its founder.

The arrest follows repeated cyber attacks on Wikileaks and the freezing of Assange’s bank account by Swiss post bank PostFinance. The arrest is being interpreted by his supporters as a US-led campaign to decapitate the Wikileaks project in the wake of Cablegate. Opponents of Assange are pleased to see the legal net tighten on a man they consider a dangerous, unaccountable renegade who endangers lives in the quest for transparency.

According to The Guardian, one of the news organisations carrying the Wikileaked cables, Assange has told friends he is increasingly convinced the US is behind Swedish prosecutors’ attempts to extradite him for questioning on the assault allegations and believes that Sweden is behaving as “a cipher” for the US.

The arrest of Assange means most media attention surrounding Cablegate has now shifted to the plight of the founder. Assange’s lawyer Mark Stephens said the issue could be summed up as a “dispute over consensual but unprotected sex” and informed BBC Newsnight viewers that Assange has been repeatedly trying to set up a meeting with the Swedish prosecutor Marianne Ny to clear his “good name.”

“As the legal net continued to close around the whistleblowers’ website and the US attorney general, Eric Holder, said he had authorised ‘a number of things to be done’ to combat the organisation, Assange appeared to be reconciling himself to a lengthy personal court battle to avoid extradition to Sweden,” interpreted Owen Boycott at The Guardian.

“The decision to press on (with publication) will help allay fears among Assange’s supporters that his arrest would hobble the organisation’s work,” said Robert Booth at The Guardian, who reported that his paper “understands the organisation has no plans to release the insurance file of the remaining cables, which number more than 200,000.”

Quote:WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was remanded in custody today after appearing in court on an extradition warrant.

The 39-year-old Australian, who is wanted in Sweden over allegations he sexually assaulted two women, was refused bail on the grounds there was a risk he would fail to surrender.

Before a packed court No 1 at Westminster magistrates court, District Judge Howard Riddle said Assange was to be remanded in custody until a further hearing on December 14.

The ruling came despite Jemima Khan, film director Ken Loach and veteran journalist John Pilger standing up in court to offer to act at surety for Assange.

But the judge concluded that because of the "serious" nature of the allegations against Assange, his "comparatively weak community ties" in the UK, and that it was believed he had the financial means and the ability to abscond, there was a substantial risk he would fail to surrender.

"This case is not, on the face of it, about WikiLeaks. It is an allegation in another European country of serious sexual offences alleged to have occurred on three separate occasions and involving two separate victims," he said.

Assange appeared in the glass-panelled dock in a courtroom crammed with up to 50 British and international journalists. There was standing room only in the public gallery as he spoke to confirm his name and date of birth.

But there was confusion when he initially refused to give an address, stating only a post office box number, which was unacceptable to the court. Eventually, after discussions with his lawyer, he gave an address in Parkfield, Victoria, Australia.

Gemma Lindfield, representing the Swedish authorities, told the court he was wanted in connection with four allegations.

The first complainant, a Miss A, said she was the victim of "unlawful coercion" on the night of 14 August in Stockholm. The court heard Assange was alleged to have "forcefully" held her arms and used his bodyweight to hold her down. The second charge alleged he "sexually molested" her by having sex without using a condom, when it was her "express wish" that one should be used.

A third charge claimed Assange "deliberately molested" Miss A on 18 August.

A fourth charge, relating to a Miss W, alleged that on 17 August, he "improperly exploited" the fact she was asleep to have sex with her without a condom.

Lindfield argued Assange should be refused bail because of his "nomadic lifestyle", citing reports in the media he intended to seek asylum in Switzerland, he had access to money from donors and a network of international contacts, and because as an Australian he was only entitled to stay in the UK for a limited time.

He had also refused to have his fingerprints taken or give a DNA sample on arrest. She also argued it was for his own protection as "any number of unstable persons could take it upon themselves to cause him serious harm".

"This is someone for whom, simply put, no conditions, even the most stringent conditions that could be imposed, would ensure he would surrender to the jurisdiction of this court."

Well-known figures attended court to stake their reputation by offering sureties totalling at least £180,000.

Khan, former wife of the Pakistan cricketer Imran Khan and sister of the Tory MP Zac Goldsmith, told the court that although she did not personally know Assange she was prepared to offer £20,000, or more if needed.

Pilger said that he did know Assange and had "a very high regard for him". He was prepared to offer £20,000, he said, describing the proceedings in Sweden as "absurd" and saying it would be "a travesty" if Assange had to "go within that Swedish system".

Loach , who also offered £20,000, said he did not know Assange, but added: "I think the work he has done has been a public service, I think we are entitled to know the dealings of those that govern us."

Assange's solicitor, John Jones, said the case was not about WikiLeaks but was a simple accusation case with the right to bail. Assange was of good character, he had voluntarily surrendered to police, and he had a UK address where he was able to stay, he added. Assange, who had stayed at London's Frontline Club for two months, had been staying at this new address for the past three weeks, Jones said.

He had refused to have his fingerprints taken or volunteer a DNA sample on legal advice, said Jones. He said Assange did not have access to vast sums of money.

He also said Assange had left Sweden after seeking permission, had made offers to be interviewed either at the Swedish embassy in London, at a police station or via video conferencing.

The case had been dropped by one Swedish prosecutor, only to be reopened by another, he told the court.
12-07-2010, 09:42 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-07-2010, 09:55 PM by Deathaniel.)
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
LOL Gotta love the distraction here, so drama filled.... While the Left hand is keeping the media busy what is the right hand doing is it really as simple as a vengeance for being a squealer....

Like even the shit released was mostly just gossip and tit for tat opinions no mass graves or admittance of the NWO agenda... the whole thing is a smoke screen...Dodgy

Like was there any leaks of such juice as...." Heir Rothschild communicated to us all to introduce the new flu then 3 months later the Vaccine, with the new additive 13rx2 to salt and sugar, for public consumption in all conquered countries." with other reports letting us know 13rx2 + vaccine leads to mass sterilizations, or fatalities from something as fun as mad cow or, or fast acting cancer!

Frankly I'm surprised this site was taken in by such an obvious attempt at MSM BS, What is Wikileaks to us? We don't need proof the NWO exist we already know! We don't need proof of corrupt govs, we know! this whole thing with Wiki leaks is for the unwashed and dumb ed down masses who need there noses rubbed in shit and even then most will say they smell nothing! Even this new development and the closing of the sites accounts.... for us who know how it works this is just BAU folks.... more distraction while they continue wasting what little time we all have and to keep folks from the real issues. I'll be honest I have not read much but what i did look at was shit ... like who the f cares... but I'm open to being corrected, as i mentioned if any here have studded in detail the leaks and can give something sup sup juicy like above I'm all eyes, but until then have some Pride in your years of commitment to the truth and not be taken in by this non-sense, try to see what is really going on, like i said maybe there is some gems in the leaks, but I'm skeptical
Remember Knowledge is the only thing THEY can't take from you, and Knowledge is Know how, and Know how is Power!!!

Live long and Prosper!!!! Have a plan beyond words, and worry not of why the storm is coming as to how you're going to survive in it!!!!

Deathanyl @gmail!!!!!!
12-07-2010, 10:39 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-07-2010, 10:41 PM by rsol.)
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
we shall have to see. I'm still looking at this in its raw form. i just wish for it to evolve..... if he dies and i would still be stuck in out corners. If he gets released there might be SOMETHING left in our lands left to fight for. I wont take pot shots on very little information.

The danger you face death... is disbelieving something/someone because they are not exactly telling you what you want to hear.
12-08-2010, 12:40 AM,
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
(12-07-2010, 10:39 PM)rsol Wrote: we shall have to see. I'm still looking at this in its raw form. i just wish for it to evolve..... if he dies and i would still be stuck in out corners. If he gets released there might be SOMETHING left in our lands left to fight for. I wont take pot shots on very little information.

The danger you face death... is disbelieving something/someone because they are not exactly telling you what you want to hear.

naugh i just don't care much bout the MSM trickery and deception and I never needed Wikileaks to know what i know... I doubt many of us here did, and like i said unless it was super official and traceable any intel from there will be not very relevant to much, the NWO secret shadows don't post memos and leave correspondence to each other... But I'm open and wanting to be wrong so I lookforward to your posts.

For now though i say folks need to turn off the TV's and MSM it's just a deception, stay online, and keep your ears and eyes peeled and your mind open as the truth is out there and time is scarce, the time it might take for a group to filter through is time wasted if for no results that can make difference, and well times up on the arrest them all and take back the world getting the justice were all due... now it's time to prep, plan and educate, so as if one makes it through they have a fighting chance. Weither there is a NWO gov in place or not in next 10-20 years, there will always be a resistance!

"Truth is a hard thing to kill, but easy to enslave and keep in prisons" JTW
Remember Knowledge is the only thing THEY can't take from you, and Knowledge is Know how, and Know how is Power!!!

Live long and Prosper!!!! Have a plan beyond words, and worry not of why the storm is coming as to how you're going to survive in it!!!!

Deathanyl @gmail!!!!!!
12-08-2010, 09:05 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-08-2010, 09:49 PM by rsol.)
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
Quote:naugh i just don't care much bout the MSM trickery and deception and I never needed Wikileaks to know what i know.
Quote:keep your ears and eyes peeled and your mind open as the truth is out there and time is scarce.

Two contradictory statements. you have already decided its a deception. thats not a mind i can consider open, more like half open. Or perhaps you think that anyone gaining notoriety instantly becomes suspect? perhaps all the info you and i have read is all suspect? can i even believe my freshly peeled eyes? and can i keep my mouth closed? lots of bugs around atm.
the story continues.......

Quote:Julian Assange rape allegations: treatment of women 'unfair and absurd'

The process of taking a rape allegation to court is notoriously hard for the victim. When the accused assailant is a high-profile campaigner with thousands of active and vocal supporters, it becomes acutely fraught.

Claes Borgström, the lawyer for the two women whose complaints of sexual assault triggered Julian Assange's arrest, said his clients had been assaulted twice: first physically, before being "sacrificed" to a malevolent online attack. The women were having "a very tough time", he said.

A wealth of hostile material attacking the two women has appeared on the internet since August, when they took their complaints to the police. Their right to anonymity has been abandoned online, where enraged bloggers have uploaded dossiers of personal photographs, raked through their CVs and tweets, and accused them of orchestrating a CIA-inspired honeytrap operation. These online rumours were a convenient way for Assange to divert suspicion from the actual allegations, the women's lawyer said.

Keen to set some of the more outlandish rumours to rest, Borgström, a highly respected Swedish lawyer with 30 years of experience, today rebutted the claims and counter-claims that Assange's arrest has unleashed. He said his clients were "the victims of a crime, but they are looked upon as the perpetrators and that is very unfortunate".

In an interview at his fifth-floor office in central Stockholm, he continued: "What is going on now is very, very unfair to them because they are being pointed at as if they have started a conspiracy against Assange and WikiLeaks, and that is not true. There is nothing wrong with their reputation and they have done nothing wrong in going to the police. What they are going through is unfair and absurd."

He questioned whether the women would have pressed charges had they known in advance how their reputations would be attacked. "If they had known what was going to happen, maybe they would not have gone to the police at all … I would not have done it," he said.

His own involvement in the case has not been without complications. On Monday night his firm's website was hacked and shut down. "We have never experienced anything like this before," he said.

In today's London Evening Standard, Assange's UK lawyer, Mark Stephens, repeated his conviction that the affair was politically motivated. "The honeytrap has been sprung. Dark forces are at work. After what we've seen so far you can reasonably conclude this is part of a greater plan," he said.

But Borgström rejected the notion that the rape case and the extradition demand form part of a conspiracy to damage the reputation of the WikiLeaks founder. "It has nothing whatsoever to do with WikiLeaks or the CIA and I regret very much that Julian Assange does not publicly say that himself. That would be a way of leaving all these rumours," he said. "There are no political ingredients in this at all, but I quite understand that there are rumours.

"WikiLeaks is headline news all over the world at this time and Assange is suspected of a sexual crime in Sweden, so of course people think there is connection. There is nothing, zero."

The women were "very credible" witnesses, he said. "They have given very detailed stories about what they have been through."

Assange's reputation is less the focus of scrutiny online, but an acquaintance who met him and both women in Stockholm around the time of the alleged assaults told the Guardian he had warned Assange that his behaviour towards women was going to get him into trouble.

"I don't think it was a conspiracy, but this provided a golden opportunity for the enemies of WikiLeaks to use the situation to neutralise him," said the man, who wanted to remain anonymous. "A personality like Assange, who is known throughout the world, in the media every day, has a huge attraction to women. A lot of women invited him to their beds and he took that opportunity too much … all the time.

"I spoke to him about this. I warned him that it was not a good way to behave ethically and also in terms of his security. His weakness was – is – women. I warned him it would cause him trouble."

He said women responded to him in the way they might respond to meeting Mick Jagger. "When you attract that many women you have to think about how you behave," he said.

The unusual circumstances surrounding the initial handling of the alleged assault have been used by Assange's online supporters to fan suspicions about the case. Why was an investigation launched by the Swedish prosecutors before being dropped and then revived? Why did the women, who had not previously known each other, go together to the police to report the assaults? Why was an extradition required when Assange had earlier been allowed to leave Sweden?

Borgström attempted to refute this speculation point by point today. He would not say where the women were, only that he was in daily contact with them. He had advised them not to read what was being said about them on the internet, he said. "But they do …"

There was nothing unusual about different prosecutors, of varying seniority, coming to different conclusions about whether a crime had occurred, he said. Rape was rarely a clear-cut case of an unknown man pouncing on a woman, he said, and this case, like most, was nuanced and complicated.

He refused to reveal sensitive details of the evidence provided to him by the women. "It is important for the future investigation that the suspect himself does not know more than necessary before he is interrogated by the Swedish police," he said.

But he gave a concise summary of the key allegations. "These two women were molested by Mr Julian Assange at two different times, independently of each other," he said. One of the two women, who met Assange at a lecture he gave in Stockholm in August, wanted to contact him after the alleged assault because she wanted him to take a test for sexually transmitted infections. She contacted the second woman, who had helped organise the lecture, to see if she could help her to find him. "When they spoke to each other they realised they had been through something very similar so they went to the police. That's not odd," he said.

"They decided to go to the police, to inform the police of what happened, to ask for advice; also they were interested in whether there was a risk that they could have got HIV. They were not sure whether they should make a police complaint, they wanted to have some advice. But when they told the police officer, she realised that what they were telling her was a crime and she reported that to the public prosecutor, who decided to arrest Assange."

Two days later a second prosecutor, who conducted a preliminary investigation, came to a different conclusion, judging that the evidence did not meet the criterion of a rape or sexual molestation charge. "She made another judgment, saying: 'No it's not. It's very close, but not quite,'" he claimed. "So she cancelled the arrest order and he was still suspected of molestation without sexual motives.

"When I read that decision, my own conclusion was and still is that it was a rape, so I asked for a reopening of the case, and then the investigation was reopened." There was nothing suspicious about this closing and reopening of the case, he said. "The law is not an exact science. You can always make different judgments. Different courts and different prosecutors make different decisions. I think that the prosecutor who cancelled the arrest warrant did not study the case well enough."

Assange was at that time free to leave the country, Borgström said. "He didn't have to ask anyone if he could." It was only later when it appeared that Assange was unwilling to return voluntarily for questioning that the extradition process was launched, he said.

"It turned out it was impossible to get him here for an interrogation, he wanted to be interrogated in the embassy, or wherever. Then the prosecutor decided to arrest him," he said.

Privately, Assange has suggested that he is being victimised because Sweden has a tougher approach to prosecuting rape than other countries. There are differences, not least the division of the charge of rape into three different subsections: severe, standard, and less severe. Assange is charged with the lesser charge, but still faces a maximum sentence of four years' imprisonment.

Lawyers are said to joke here that men in Sweden need written permission to have sex, but Borgström, who was for seven years the country's equal opportunities ombudsman, dismissed this today as an inaccurate, chauvinistic interpretation of the country's law.

"Men like to repeat that joke … no woman would say that. I think it is very unfair. There is not an equal situation for men and women in society as a whole, but especially not in this field."

Whether Assange will be prosecuted in Sweden on the four charges of rape, sexual molestation, and coercion against him depends on whether or not the Swedish director of prosecutions, Marianne Ny, finds enough evidence to be confident that the case will stand up in court. Before she does that, she needs to question Assange further, and may also need to question the women again.

The probability of the prosecution going ahead is around 50-50, or perhaps a little more than that, Borgström said.

"In Sweden, like in other countries, the burden of proof lies upon the prosecutor. The prosecutor must prove beyond reasonable doubt that a client is guilty of the crimes. Beyond reasonable doubt is very high – I don't know whether she can reach that level. And history tells you that you can reach different judgments on the same material depending on how you interpret that material."

The way the case has been handled in Sweden attracted criticism in the UK earlier this week, amid confusion over the opening and closing of the case. But Assange would get a fair trial, Borgström asserted: "The Swedish court system is one of the best and strongest in the world. The WikiLeaks affair will have no influence on the case if it goes to court."

this is the important bit for me.

Whether Assange will be prosecuted in Sweden on the four charges of rape, sexual molestation, and coercion against him depends on whether or not the Swedish director of prosecutions, Marianne Ny, finds enough evidence to be confident that the case will stand up in court. Before she does that, she needs to question Assange further, and may also need to question the women again.

He is not going to sweden yet. We do have good people out there folks. dont forget them.
12-09-2010, 03:14 AM,
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
Let's hope the Swedish Director of Prosecutions is able to put aside any political pressures in this case, and just focus on the evidence at hand. Either way, charges true or not true, there WILL be pressure coming from at least all non-American nations, if Wikileaks is legit, that would include the USA.

What I don;t get is, if there was DNA evidence to back this up (which of course there should have been as the incidents were reported (as far as I recollect) right away, then they wouldn't have dropped the charges in August. Also, did you hear that Sweden made a mistake on the first edition of the most recent arrest warrant and had to get another done 3 or 4 days later!?! Does that not sound like a nation "stalling" for time? I'm sure they didn't make such a "mistake", it was surely accidentally on purpose Wink But why?
"He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked." -- 1 John 2:6
"Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly... This is the interrelated structure of reality." -- Martin Luther King Jr.
"He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him." -- Proverbs 18:13
"Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself." -- Leo Tolstoy
"To love is to be vulnerable" -- C.S Lewis

The Kingdom of God is within you! -- Luke 17:20-21
12-09-2010, 01:16 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-09-2010, 01:20 PM by rsol.)
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
(12-09-2010, 03:14 AM)Dunamis Wrote: What I don;t get is, if there was DNA evidence to back this up (which of course there should have been as the incidents were reported (as far as I recollect) right away, then they wouldn't have dropped the charges in August. Also, did you hear that Sweden made a mistake on the first edition of the most recent arrest warrant and had to get another done 3 or 4 days later!?! Does that not sound like a nation "stalling" for time? I'm sure they didn't make such a "mistake", it was surely accidentally on purpose Wink But why?

The case for rape in sweden is three fold. there is a standard rape charge and a worst and lesser charge. His is the lesser. He had unprotected sex with a woman who apparently (before throwing him a party and talking to the second woman) not concented to sex with this man because he didnt have a condom. Whats interesting is these two women have met. they had sex with him in 3 different occasions and all of them were consentual. in other words...if he was tried ANYWHERE else in the world....this wouldnt be rape. Its also interesting to note that these ladies seem to be getting some payback for what seems to be a bit of two timing by all accounts. one of the women had out a blog explaining "legal" ways to get back at your EX. im not sure if this is just a play by the yanks to get him into the country and book him out from sweden while the case is dropped....or just a couple of bitches got shagged and left and want some payback. im still in the dark here....
12-09-2010, 11:18 PM,
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
It looks like Assange is a victim of a "honeypot/honeytrap"

There is another thing about this. Julian Assange (of Wikileaks) is now being held at the EXACT same prison as John Hill (producer of "7/7 Ripple Effect" movie). They are BOTH being kept at Wandsworth Prison in London. Coincidence?

Assange is there taking extra grief for having leaked US State Department cables while Mr. Hill is there because of his work exposing governmental coverups regarding the 7/7 terrorist bombings in London (among other things on his website).

The odd thing is, the media is spouting off madly about Assange and Wikileaks, but are keeping TOTALLY silent about John Hill and his "7/7 Ripple Effect" movie. Why is the media being so one-sided?

Makes a person wonder if the overflowing coverage of Assange is being done purposely to overshadow Mr. Hill and his actions. Everyone now knows about wikileaks. Do a GoogleVideo search for "7/7 Ripple Effect" and check out what Mr. Hill is in prison for or search for "Friends of Muad'Dib" for all the news regarding his situation which the media apparently don't want people to know about.

Looks to me like the real thing the corporate media wants to hide is what Mr. Hill is doing.

You can watch 7/7 Ripple Effect here:
12-10-2010, 10:11 PM, (This post was last modified: 12-10-2010, 10:32 PM by rsol.)
RE: wikileaks front man arrested
Quote:more to the story

Anna Ardin, one of the two complainants in the rape and sexual assault case against WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange, has left Sweden, and may have ceased actively co-operating with the Swedish prosecution service and her own lawyer, sources in Sweden told Crikey today.

The move comes amid a growing campaign by leading Western feminists to question the investigation, and renewed confusion as to whether Sweden has actually issued charges against Assange. Naomi Klein, Naomi Wolf, and the European group Women Against Rape, have all made statements questioning the nature and purpose of the prosecution.

Ardin, who also goes by the name Bernardin, has moved to the West Bank in the Palestinian Territories, as part of a Christian outreach group, aimed at bringing reconciliation between Palestinians and Israelis. She has moved to the small town of Yanoun, which sits close to Israel’s security/sequestration wall. Yanoun is constantly besieged by fundamentalist Jewish settlers, and international groups have frequently stationed themselves there.

Attempts by Crikey to contact Ardin by phone, fax, email and twitter were unsuccessful today.

Ardin’s blog has restarted after a fortnight hiatus, and her twitter feed has restarted after a two-month break. The twitter feed appears to be commenting on her ongoing profile in the media with the latest entry reading: “CIA agent, rabid feminist / Muslim lover, a Christian fundamentalist, frigid & fatally in love with a man, can you be all that at the same time …”

The previous tweet appears to extend support to WikiLeaks, after financial agencies withdrew their services, reading “Mastercard, Visa and Paypal — hit it, now!”*

One source from Ardin’s old university of Uppsala reported rumours that she had stopped co-operating with the prosecution service several weeks ago, and that this was part of the reason for the long delay in proceeding with charges — and what still appears to be an absence of charges.

News of Ardin/Bernardin’s departure comes as reports circulate of Ardin’s connection to the right-wing Cuban exile community in Miami, something that Crikey readers learnt of months ago. The reports have helped fuel wilder conspiracy theories about the nature of Ardin’s involvement with WikiLeaks and Assange.

A former politics student who had done internships at Sweden’s DC embassy, Ardin completed her thesis on Cuban political opposition groups, many of whom have involvement — and funding — from the US interests section, the only US diplomatic representation in Cuba. Ardin initially began her research in Havana and left after being advised that her position was no longer safe. She completed the research in Miami.

However, it seems more likely that the Cuban episode is part of the same political nomadism that led her to WikiLeaks. An office holder with the Social Democratic party’s Christian “brotherhood” faction, Ardin is active in a range of causes from Latin America to animal liberation.

Ardin’s move and confusion over her involvement and the real status of the charges against Assange come as the campaign questioning the charges against him has come to include a number of leading feminist activists. Naomi Klein tweeted that:

“R-pe is being used in the #Assange prosecution in the same way that women’s freedom was used to invade Afghanistan. Wake up! #wikilieaks”

While in The Huffington Post, Naomi Wolf posted a (quite funny) article asking Interpol to apprehend every date she’s had who turned out to be a narcissistic jerk.

In The Guardian Karin Axelsson of Women Against R-pe questioned why Assange’s case was being pursued more assiduously than cases of r-pe judged more serious (Sweden has three degrees of severity for r-pe charges).

These moves are evidence of the situation your correspondent suggested in Crikey yesterday — that the Assange case is proving to be the final process by which the second-wave feminist coalition formed in the late 1960s splits substantially, with feminists with differing attitude to Western state power finding themselves on different sides of the debate.

Indeed, it puts one in the unusual position of saying that commentators such as Wolf are being too anti-complainant in their construction of the charges as nothing other than a couple of bad dates. It’s a strange world, and getting stranger.

The lawyer for Ardin and Wilen, the two complainants, has hit back at attacks and criticism of his clients, saying that they had been put on trial and effectively assaulted twice. He claimed to be in daily contact with the women, which suggests that he has a better reception to Yanoun than many of its inhabitants have to the outside world.

Even if the case comes to trial, the prospects of conviction look slim. Crikey asked Flinders University s-x crime law expert Dr Mary Heath to go over the charges (which may still be accusations at this stage) as they were relayed in Assange’s extradition bail hearing, and she made the following comments:

“Practically speaking, I would not like the chances of the prosecutor on charge 3 — pressing his erect p-nis into the complainant’s back … legally speaking I would have to suggest the chances of conviction would be slim for any Australian offence where both accused were adults. Proving non consent might be difficult but proving awareness of non consent would be even harder.

“Charges 1 and 2 (holding partner down, and unsafe s-x despite earlier expressed opposition to such) involve contexts where there would be room for defence argument about consent. On charge 1, when is one person ‘holding down’ another person lying beneath them, and when are they simply having consensual s-x in a position involving one person being on top of the other person? Is this force or just rough but consensual (compared to cases I’ve read, the allegation would hardly count as rough).

“On charge 2, prior unwillingness is not enough, the complainant must not be consenting and the accused must be aware of this ‘at the time of int-rcourse’. Did complainant one change her mind? Did Assange believe she changed her mind, and perhaps on reasonable grounds the charge does not disclose?

“On charge 4 (s-x while complainant was sleeping), recent experience in South Australia suggests this also could be difficult to prove if there was any kind of s-xual interaction prior to the complainant falling asleep, which might give the defence a plausible argument that belief in consent was present. I was deeply unimpressed by the level of protection the courts (let alone public attitudes) offered to people who are asleep or unconscious due to drugs/alcohol.

“… The one thing that is clearer, perhaps, is that the charges may turn on withdrawal of consent once a s-xual act had commenced. The law of almost every jurisdiction in Australia would recognise withdrawal of consent after a s-xual act commenced as rendering that s-xual act non consensual (and therefore r-pe). As for proving it … I reiterate what I said about proof previously.”

The Guardian reports that former Crown Prosecution Service extradition expert Raj Joshi said that extradition was unlikely:

“On what we know so far, it is going to be very difficult to extradite. The judge has to be satisfied that the conduct equals an extraditable offence and that there are no legal bars to extradition.

“Assange’s team will argue, how can the conduct equal an extraditable offence if the [Swedish] prosecutor doesn’t think there is enough evidence to charge, and still has not charged.”

This has added to speculation that the Swedish moves, which have coincided with the release of the Cablegate stories, are politically motivated as stalling tactics, allowing Assange to be detained while the US “prepares an extradition/rendition request”, according to Assange’s UK lawyer Mark Stephens.

* I might have that completely wrong. The Swedish is “Mastercard, Visa och paypal — skärp er, nu!” I’m happy to be corrected.

Quote:"There is another thing about this. Julian Assange (of Wikileaks) is now being held at the EXACT same prison as John Hill (producer of "7/7 Ripple Effect" movie). They are BOTH being kept at Wandsworth Prison in London. Coincidence?"

wandworth is one of the largest in europe. so yeah probs

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