How Free are we Really? -The Prosecution of Julian Assange Answers that Question

Today, UK Home Secretary Priti Patel, will be given the opportunity to decide whether or not to allow for the extradition of journalist Julian Assange to the US. The Secretary’s deadline for the decision is on the 31st of May, and thus it is crucial for everyone to understand what is happening.

Put very simply, Julian Assange is being persecuted by the US government for helping expose its war-crimes.

After having helped expose several major leaks in 2010, mainly regarding the US invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan, the US government began their investigation and prosecution of him. Because of this Assange has spent more than a decade imprisoned, either in a room of the Ecuadorian embassy in London, were he sought asylum, or in the maximum-security prison in London, Belmarsh.

For an extensive overview of the case, check out the series of articles by journalist Caitlin Johnstone, explaining the case and debunking the many smears used as an excuse to persecute Assange.

Now, Assange is closer than ever to the worst case scenario; being extradited to the US, where he will be placed in a maximum security prison, never to be heard from again.

If the experience’s of other whistleblowers, such as Chelsea Manning, are any indication of what Assange will experience, it entails being kept in constant solitary confinement and being prevented from communicating with anyone.

There are many smears against Assange; many influential people either dismissing, downplaying, or ignoring the importance of the case; some even outright stand by the US government. And while there are nuances worth discussing in the case, these nuances are almost always used as a smear to cover a simple truth:

Julian Assange is being prosecuted because he revealed the truth about the actions of the US empire.

He stepped out of line of the official narrative, by showing us that the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan were not noble wars, but rather unjustified atrocities that led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of civillians.

The US is now making an example of him, meaning that they are showing us all, “here’s what happens when you challenge us. Here’s what happens if you say something, expose something that goes against our narrative”.

This case shows us that our freedom is truly limited to what is approved of by our governments, and that if we challenge them, we too will face the same prosecution as Assange.

Home Secretary Patel now has an opportunity to demonstrate whether the UK government values freedom or control.

Actions speak louder than words.

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