A number of great voices were raised outside Westminster Magistrates Court yesterday in defence of Julian Assange the WikiLeaks publisher. Listen to what Gordon Dimmack, Chris Marsden and Maxine Walker had to say.
And here is Maxine Walker’s Speech
You will have seen the letter from Julian Assange in Belmarsh prison.
“I am defenceless and am counting on you and others of good character to save my life….But the days when I could read and speak and organise to defend myself, my ideals and my people are over until I am free. Everyone else must take my place.”
Well we are here today to take his place. We are here to stand for Julian Assange.
In standing with him we are standing for what? We are standing for truth, we are standing for freedom, and we are standing for democracy.
And what are we standing against? We are standing against the imperialist war machine that has done everything in its power to demonise and destroy Julian Assange and WikiLeaks. The secrecy, the lies of the war machine of the imperialist countries. Their murder, their torture, their rendition, their coups and their wars. That is what WikiLeaks revealed to us.
We have chosen a side. We have chosen the side of justice. And the tyrants and the psychopaths who rule the world are doing everything in their power to destroy Julian Assange, physically and mentally to lock him up forever, to bury him and make an example to other people that if you take that stand for truth, this is what will happen to you. That is why this struggle is so vital.
We cannot let that happen. We must fight to stop them.
We cannot rely for help from those who have spent years smearing and lying about Julian Assange. Look at them – the press, the politicians, the NGOs – where are they? They know that Julian Assange has been in Belmarsh prison in solitary for the past 6 weeks under a regime condemned as inhuman and degrading – torture. He is now ill and in the prison hospital. We have told them and still they remain silent.
They are not just cowards and weaklings – they have decided which side they stand on. The war machine.
Many of them call for JA to be sent to Sweden as though this was somehow not going to result him in being sent to the USA. Does anyone still think Sweden is some kind of human rights fairyland? It is joined at the hip with the USA, with its wars, its surveillance and its arms trade. In 2010, it was reported that already the Swedish government and the US state had been discussing how to get Julian Assange to the USA.
Our slogan is Free Assange! No extradition!
We face a huge fight. We know what they are doing and our response must not only be talk – it must now be action and more action. Picket the liars, picket the politicians who are silent, picket the vile Belmarsh and the Ministry of Justice, so-called, which runs it. JA has made a huge sacrifice to reveal the truth and we must now sacrifice our time and our energy, our resources and our sweat to fight for him.
Terrific speech by Maxine Walker!
All truths that are kept silent become poisonous.
“To learn who rules over you simply look at who you are not allowed to criticize.”
“When the truth is replaced by silence, the silence is a lie.”
Yevgeny Yevtushenko: Russian poet.
“We must bear in mind that imperialism is a world system, the last stage of capitalism — and it must be defeated in a world confrontation. The strategic end of this struggle should be the destruction of imperialism. Our share, the responsibility of the exploited and underdeveloped of the world, is to eliminate the foundations of imperialism.”
“Why did they think that by killing him, he would cease to exist as a fighter? … Today he is in every place, wherever there is a just cause to defend.”
Fidel Castro: on the 40th anniversary of Che’s death.
“A system that perpetually condones the killing of people, without consequence, doesn’t need to be revised, it needs to be dismantled!” — Colin Kaepernick
‘The British have been there for 200 years – for every dollar that the British have put into Gambia, they have taken out 10. It’s just plain exploitation of those people.’
In 1943, US President Roosevelt visited the Gambia. The sheer poverty led him to describe it as ‘the most horrible thing I have ever seen in my life’.
“We’re not going to transform our fine FBI into a Gestapo secret police. That’s what some people would like to do. We are not gonna try to control what our people read and say and think. We’re not gonna turn the United States into a right-wing totalitarian country in order to deal with a left-wing totalitarian threat. In short we are not going to end democracy. We are going to keep the Bill of Rights on the books.”
Harry H. Truman: USA president.
“You can’t separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom.”