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Julian Assange on Why Calls for His Death and the McCarthyesque Crackdown on WikiLeaks Are Good Signs

Assange and renowned philosopher Slavoj Zizek discuss the release of the largest trove of classified U.S. government records in history.

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But an interesting phenomena has developed amongst the journalists who work in these very large organization that are close to power and negotiate with power at the highest levels, which is the journalists having read our material and having been forced to go through it to pull out stories have themselves become educated and radicalize. And that is an ideological penetration of the truth into all these mainstream media organizations. And, that to some degree, may be one of the lasting legacies over the past year. Even Fox News, which is much disparaged, is an organization that wants viewers. It cannot do anything else without viewers. So, it will try and push news content.

So, for example, with collateral murder, CNN showed only the first few minutes and blanked out all the bullets going to the street, completely blanked it out – and said they did it out of respect for the families of the people who were killed, well there was no blood, there was no gore. And then they cut out all the most politically salient points. And the families had come forward and said that it was very important for us to have seen it. Fox actually displayed the first killing scene in full. Quite interesting. So, Fox not perceiving itself to be amenable to the threat of it not acting in a moral way actually gave people more of the truth than CNN did. So,
Fox also motivated to grab in a hungry way this greater audience share as possible took this content and gave it to more people. Afterwards, of course, they put in their commentators to talk against it but I think that the truth that we got out of Fox was often stronger than the truth we got out of CNN and similarly for many institution in the media that we think of as liberal.

AMY GOODMAN: Speaking of other legal cases I just wanted to ask you about what you face next week, the extradition case on July 12th. The Nation magazine has done two pieces—one is forthcoming. And they quote your new lawyer, Gareth Peirce who is very well known for representing prisoners at Guantanamo, a renowned human rights attorney. And Tom Hayden, who writes the piece, interviewed many people in Sweden and the United States and sort of talks about a feeling in Sweden of an attack very much represented by your past lawyers on the Swedish justice system, and on the integrity of the women in Sweden. And he quotes Gareth Peirce saying…

JULIAN ASSANGE: Our lawyers never attacked any integrity of women.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, he quotes Gareth Peirce saying, “the history of this case is as unfortunate as it is possible to imagine. Each of the human beings involves deserves respect and consideration.” And I just wanted to ask if you are seeing this as a change of approach with your legal team in dealing with your possible extradition to Sweden?

JULIAN ASSANGE: Possibly, I mean the situation….What has happened to Europe and what has happened to Sweden is fascinating. It is something I have come to learn because I’ve been embroiled in it. But it is intellectually extraordinary—so we see for example, that the European Union introduced an Arrest Warrant system. And that Arrest Warrant system to extradite from one state of the EU to another state of the EU was put in place in response to 9/11 to extradite terrorists—to have fast extradition of terrorists. And it introduced this concept, or rather recycled a European Union concept of mutual recognition. This is sort of a very feel good phrase, that one state in the EU mutually recognizes another state in the EU, and that shrunk down into mutual recognition between one court in the EU to another court in the EU. But actually what it seems to be talking about, if you think about it, given the reality that three people a day are extradited from this country to the rest of Europe, is a mutual recognition of the elite in each country in the EU. It is a method of, um, of being at peace.

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