TRIGGER WARNING: There are trigger warnings for victims of abuse in some of the links below if you click through to the Rixstep article or the picture of the tweets.
We decided to find out how high-profile Wikileaks supporters are reacting to the assorted news that:
- Sweden do not and cannot extradite for espionage or hacking into government systems or leaking (see Prof Klamberg’s legal blog for the original authority used by Green). Sweden do not extradite for these acts to the USA or to anywhere else.
- Much of the false information circulating about the case (some repeated by ABC Australia) can still be seen on the official Wikileaks site justice4assange (and is still repeated by the organisation), despite having been thoroughly debunked here and elsewhere.
- This includes the claim that Julian Assange has not been charged.
- Wikileaks have previously linked directly (TRIGGER WARNING) to an internet page on rixstep.com that names and attacks the alleged victims, says that domestic abuse is “chiefly caused by women”, and some far nastier things. You can see selected quotes here (TRIGGER WARNING).
- The Wikileaks official site still links to the same attack article at the top of this page (TRIGGER WARNING).
Also, as this graphic (TRIGGER WARNING) shows:
- Wikileaks follow @rixstepnews as one of their few feeds on Twitter.
- @Rixstepnews regularly launches personal attacks on the two women on twitter.
- Wikileaks continue to retweet items from @Rixstepnews, thus giving tacit support to the behaviour.
Peter Tatchell very kindly replied to an advance draft copy of the above. He said:
I believe that Assange should answer the sexual assault allegations. The alleged victims of sexual assault should not be abused or vilified. Their claims should be taken seriously. They deserve justice if a crime has been committed.
I do not and never have tacitly supported the comments to which you refer. Nor do I approve of the phrase you quote [from Rixstep].
While not agreeing with everything that Wikileaks says or does, overall I support its exposure of war crimes and other abuses by US military and diplomatic personnel.
I urge Wikileaks and my fellow Wikileaks supporters to not abuse or harass our critics or the alleged victims of sexual assault. Let’s keep the debate civilised and honourable, even if some people on the other side don’t.
If Sweden doesn’t extradite to the US on the grounds of espionage and leaking, why has the Swedish government refused to say this publicly?
Mr Tatchell also referred us to his twitter feed, where he (incorrectly) states the following:
- Assange has not been charged (see above).
- Sweden could extradite to the USA for leaking military secrets and face the death penalty (Sweden cannot extradite for espionage at all – or for any crime if the death penalty is not ruled out by the requesting country in advance).
- If extradited for one offence, Assange could later be charged with another one in the USA (this last is also explicitly prohibited by the extradition treaty, as is standard in such treaties).
Vivienne Westwood’s office asked for us to re-confirm the details we had sent. We re-sent the email, and it was acknowledged. We have not heard from them since, despite a reminder we sent a week later.
We attempted to contact Michael Moore via his website. We do not know if the message was received; we have had no response.
Women Against Rape have been emailed and tweeted several times over several weeks to ask for their views. They have not replied.