Sweden drops Assange rape investigation


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/05/19/sweden-ends-assange-rape-inves.html


#2

How many years in the Ecuadorean embassy do you think it will take to equal one year in a Swedish prison?


#3

Assange said he’d submit to extradition to the U.S. if Chelsea Manning, a key Wikileaks source, was released—an offer he later made contingent upon cutting his own deal with U.S. authorities.

Small bit of errata, you seem to have misspelled “And immediately weaseled out of it on the technicality that he said pardon, and clemency is not a pardon.”

Let’s face it, he was never really hiding out from extradition. The US even said that they didn’t want to extradite him, and honestly didn’t want to charge him on account of the fact that they’d have to charge basically every news outlet in the country on the same grounds. And he was never, ever going to willingly face extradition, he was banking on the idea that the US wouldn’t grant any pardon for Manning so that he could get a quick PR bump without having to live up to his word.
This is just a story of an alleged rapist wanted for arrest dodging justice by hiding out from the investigation for a sufficiently long period of time, and isn’t something to be celebrated.

Manning is a hero. Snowden is a hero. Assange is a narcissistic right-wing twit cowering in an embassy broom closet because he didn’t want to face the consequences of his actions.


#4

I figure just another three, as the statute of limitations for the rape case will be up in 2020.


#5

The US even said that they didn’t want to extradite him, and honestly didn’t want to charge him on account of the fact that they’d have to charge basically every news outlet in the country on the same grounds.


#6

On the other had if extradition to Sweden would be the reason for his hiding he should be free to walk now, no? Funny how they got you to hate him, based mainly on allegation.


#7

#8

Nothing in this story or my post said he’d been charged with rape. That article’s footstamping about the prosecutor’s “third wave feminist agenda” rather undermines its own chiaroscuro-lit truthseeker pretensions.


#9

Nobby_stiles links an NYT article from April this year.

.
Unless he has a time machine to leap from 2012 to 2017 to see if charges are being considering, then jumping back and making his decision based on that, then it’s irrelevant.

Seriously, I don’t mean to offend, but I’m stunned that I even have to explain that the actions of the Trump administration now, just barely under five months old, have absolutely no bearing on decisions made almost a half-dozen years before. And just in case you don’t belive me, here’s an article from 2013, a year after he went into hiding, discussing EXACTLY that, how the US doesn’t really want to bring charges.

[quote=“stanestane, post:6, topic:101267, full:true”]
On the other had if extradition to Sweden would be the reason for his hiding he should be free to walk now, no? Funny how they got you to hate him, based mainly on allegation.
[/quote]He absolutely would be…IF he hadn’t also committed a crime in the UK that he’s now wanted for arrest for, namely, failing to surrender to a court, or in more colloquial terms, he’s still wanted for skipping bail in the UK. It’s literally quoted in the boingboing article you’re commenting on.

And I don’t hate him, at best, I dislike him as a person. But it’s not a matter of my likes and dislikes, I just want to see him face justice. You think he’s the first dude in the history of the world to spin a conspiracy theory as to why he’s copping a rape charge? What, do you think he deserves to just have a get-out-of-jail free card for all crimes, because he stuck some classified documents on a website? I don’t give a shit if he’s the worst of the worst, or the hero of the world, he deserves to face a court just as any other person does. Nobody should be above the law. And it’s not like we’re sending him to some third-world shithole where he’s going to be tortured until they get a sham confession and then executed, it’s Sweden, for christ’s sake, a country whose legal system and prisons make the USA look like the aforementioned third world shithole.


#10

I disagree: some laws are wrong and must be defied; the Law is not always the authority, and not always right.

That said, Assange didn’t want the rape allegation to become the first domino in a list of charges that really didn’t apply, but against which he would be powerless to fight.

And being stuck in a handful of rooms in an embassy for…6 years? That’s longer than most rapists spend in prison, and his time there is looking like its not going to end soon.


#11

[quote=“Blaze_Curry, post:10, topic:101267”]
I disagree: some laws are wrong and must be defied; the Law is not always the authority, and not always right.
[/quote]The laws against rape are not among those.

[quote=“Blaze_Curry, post:10, topic:101267”]
That said, Assange didn’t want the rape allegation to become the first domino in a list of charges that really didn’t apply, but against which he would be powerless to fight.
[/quote]An ability to come up with paranoid fantasies for which there’s no evidence does not mean he shouldn’t face the consequences of his actions.

[quote=“Blaze_Curry, post:10, topic:101267”]
And being stuck in a handful of rooms in an embassy for…6 years? That’s longer than most rapists spend in prison, and his time there is looking like its not going to end soon.
[/quote]That sounds more like a problem with the legal system and how we treat rapists with kid gloves, than anything to do with Assange. That, and a self-imposed confinement taken to escape arrest does not count as time served. They don’t just let you off saying “Well, fair enough, done and done” just because you play a bloody spirited game of hide-and-seek.


#12

I don’t disagree with your assessment of Assange, but at the same time it isn’t lost on me that the sort of circumstances that Assange was wanted for questioning in relation to are not the sort of circumstances that the police or the crown would go very far with in the UK. We see other powerful people (and not-powerful people) get away with sexually assaulting women all the time.

So at the same time as we shouldn’t let Assange off the hook for what he did, I’m not ready to let the US, UK or Sweden off the hook for using sexual assault as a chess piece on their revenge board. The whole thing makes me really angry. Message to women: if you’d like justice for your sexual assault, please try to get sexually assaulted by someone who powerful politicians have a beef with.


#13

I do not forgive or forget.

Expect him.


#14

I guess one could make the case that if the Trump administration thinks there is a case then other administrations might also have believed there was a case. The argument of Craig Murrary was that the Obama administration had issued a sealed indictment against him. I cant prove thats true. However I can show that there were never valid reasons to extradite to Sweden (no charges) and there is now a transparently valid reason for Assange to be afraid of extradition to the US.

So while you can argue that none of us can know if the Obama administration (which included one official who suggested drone assassination might be a good idea) had a sealed indictment against him, one can see that in retrospect, Assange’s decision to stay trapped in an tiny embassy for 6 years makes sense. Which it wouldn’t do if he was just afraid of being forced to give evidence in Sweden (which he has now done in London).

If you want people to whistleblow then you need to give them some protection. If you want them to stop whistleblowing then you want to take away their platform for so doing. After seeing what happened to Chelsea Manning and Ed Snowden I have a pretty good idea where the US stands on whistleblowing.


#15

Given how nice Scandinavian prisons are, I’d say it’s one-to-one.


#16

no it didn’t. you really think she was being serious there?


#17

I wish I could say it like that, but instead I dropped half the point with twice the words.


#18

No, you are right. It was a joke. lol. I’m sure what she really wanted to do was to thank him for his services to transparent government - maybe send him a fruit platter as a big thank you like they did with Ed Snowden or Bradley Manning.


#19

That charege in UK being the same one that UN panel characterised as arbitrary. And that conspiracy theory being serious enough to convince government of a sovereign country to grant him an asylum.

Now that charges in Sweden have been dropped it’s even more obvious that this is not about some dude trying to weasel his way out of rape charges. Using laws that are meant to protect victims of sexual abuse for arbitrary persecution of political opponents actually undermines these very same laws.


#20

A sad end for Mendax, for sure.

Mendax, the brave lad who rummaged through teleco and military network in search of the lulz. As Julian, who wanted to shine a light on the scummy behavior of the rich and powerful. Now Assange, an asshat hiding in an embassy because he couldn’t be assed to ask.