HomeArticleAs Long As Assange Is Silenced, Claims Against Him Are Illegitimate

As Long As Assange Is Silenced, Claims Against Him Are Illegitimate

As attempts to evict Julian Assange from the Ecuadorian embassy in London get more and more aggressive, we are seeing a proportionate increase in the establishment smear campaign against him and against WikiLeaks. This is not a coincidence.

The planned campaign to remove Assange from political asylum and the greatly escalated smear campaign to destroy public support for Assange are both occurring at the same time that Assange has been cut off from the world without internet, phone calls or visitors, completely unable to defend himself from the smear campaign. This, also, is not a coincidence.

The ability to control the narrative about what is going on in the world is of unparalleled importance to the plutocrats who use governments as tools to advance their agendas. The agenda to make an example of a leak publisher with a massive platform who has repeatedly exposed the corruption of the establishment upon which western plutocrats have built their empires will require continuous narrative spin, since the precedent set by prosecuting a journalist for publishing authentic documents would arguably constitute a greater leap in the direction of Orwellian dystopia than the Patriot Act.

Among the latest components of this campaign has been a viral dump of Twitter DMs being promoted as a hot news item by outlets like Motherboard, The HillForbes and Think Progress and across #Resistance Twitter. The fact that the juicy bits from those DMs had already been published months ago by The Intercept, and the fact that the smears and spin we’re seeing reruns of today were long ago ripped to shreds in journalist Suzie Dawson’s epic essay “Being Julian Assange” after the Intercept publication, has not dampened the orgiastic frenzy with which this non-story is being bandied about by establishment loyalists and defenders of power as evidence of Assange’s nefariousness.

This is entirely illegitimate. It is not legitimate to make claims about someone who has been deliberately deprived of the ability to defend himself. It is not legitimate to spin a narrative about someone whose ability to participate in that narrative has been deliberately cut off. You don’t get to silence a man and then legitimately take over the public narrative about him. That is not a valid thing to do.

But that of course is the idea. By cutting Assange off from internet access, phone calls and visitors, he has been deprived of the ability to give his side of the story in another interview with Fox News, for example, or in tweets to his millions of followers, thus making his side of the story mainstream knowledge. Every voice has been shoved off the stage but that of the political and media establishment which just so happens to be owned and operated by the same powerful oligarchs who want Assange silenced and prosecuted for challenging their rule. This is not a coincidence.

I have said it before and I will say it again: whoever controls the narrative controls the world. If you can control the stories that the public are telling themselves about what’s going on in the world, you control the public itself. So many of the plutocratic establishment’s most aggressive spin campaigns recently have been about securing narrative control in a new media environment with unprecedented public internet access, from constant warnings about “fake news” and “conspiracy theories”, to fearmongering about “Russian bots” and “Russian propaganda”, to promoting and legitimizing the persecution of Julian Assange and WikiLeaks. The empire hates Assange because he punches holes in their ability to control the narrative, and thus control the public, and they have silenced him to deprive him of the ability to control his own narrative about himself.

Every claim made about Assange since his silencing in late March of this year can therefore be safely dismissed by the public on general principles. As long as they are rigging the debate in their favor, the debate is invalid. Literally any attack on or criticism of Assange being promoted in public discourse can legitimately be dismissed with “Assange has been deprived of his ability to defend himself from that accusation. As long as he is cut off from the world, that’s an invalid accusation to make.”

Feel free to say this to every blue-checkmarked establishment crony on social media who is bravely kicking Assange while his hands and feet are tied behind his back. Their smear campaign is intrinsically invalid, and they should be told so at every opportunity.

___________________

The best way to make sure you see the stuff I publish is to get on the mailing list for my website, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. My articles are entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, checking out my podcast, throwing some money into my hat on Patreon or Paypalor buying my book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers.

Bitcoin donations:1Ac7PCQXoQoLA9Sh8fhAgiU3PHA2EX5Zm2

Liked it? Take a second to support Caitlin Johnstone on Patreon!

Latest comments

  • I have been coming round to the view that Julian should leave the embassy. I’m not sure there will ever be a time when he can trust the British government. Maybe – and only maybe – Jeremy Corbyn would be sympathetic if he became Prime Minister, but that is a big if.

    If reports are true that he is ill and needs medical treatment then as I say, I feel he should leave. He will get medical treatment if he needs it. He is a public figure and will not be tortured by the British.

    Kim Dotcom has fought extradition to the US successfully for years now. And we don’t even know yet what will happen if and when Julian leaves.

    It must be hell being couped up in that building for years.

    • J, on one hand you say there may never be a day when Assange can trust the British government and on the other hand assert that the British would provide any needed medical treatment and that he would not be tortured by the Brits. So I’m a little confused. Plus I don’t trust one single thing about either the American government and secret agencies OR England’s (toadies to the US and now Dump). And now things are worse for Assange because he’s basically in solitary confinement.

      I just want him to be safe and to heal from the horrible ordeal he’s been put through.

    • I am astounded by your statement that the British government would not torture Julian Assange. A government which tolerates the regular sexual molestation of children by its privileged “lords” has no moral bearings whatsoever and is capable of anything except honesty..

      • The British Monarchy is a comical side-show that even Monte Python could not adequately satirize, a burlesque, a parody of democratic government. I can hardly keep myself from laughing when I see them parading around majestically in their circus costumes, except I know how ruthless, bloodthirsty and dastardly they are. I’m amazed that the British vassals have put up with them this long.

  • Happy Whistleblower Appreciation Day

  • VICE neglects to mention THEIR fascist connections in this article. Vice Media co-founder Gavin McInnes may have left the news group in 2008 but is still indeed a co founder as well as the founder of the Proud Boys.

  • Well, you can mass share this essay, for a start.

  • Bernie Sanders should be hammered on this and the true colors of his loyalty to the Truth may come out… or will he help? Tell his supporters to demand the truth from him, or dump him with the other Liars in Chiefs D and R politicians. What if all Bernie supporters (or ex supporters) hammer his phone lines etc.! Just a thought. Free Assange…

    • Imagine Caitlin, Jimmy Dore, Abby Martin, Glenn Greenwald, etc. did a coordinated effort ?

    • I’ll start calling him today!

  • The only thing left to complete this real-life parable is a modern-day Pontius Pilate. Who will that be?

  • Because Assange is charged with being “anti-Semitic” we should start getting Jews, and Israeli Jews at that, to start lobbying for him to be given political asylum in Israel, and see what happens. Will he reject the idea? Will enough Israelis reject the idea for it to be clearly absurd?

    • I’m not sure how sincerely you mean your idea, but I would NOT want to see Assange go to Israel. Israel has turned into a right wing state under another lying demagogue equal to Dump. Assange needs to be in a place where peace, justice, and freedom of the press are valued, not in a place that has its lips affixed to America’s ass.

      • Yes. There have been other reactions of this kind (but some favourable reactions also). Will it be possible for the experiment to go ahead?

        • I hope not. Specious experiment.

      • Yes, there have been other reactions of this kind (but some favourable reactions also). Will it be possible for the experiment to go ahead?

      • Julian Assange should demand that his case be heard at The World Criminal Court in The Hague. And if there is any justice in the world, Assange will be vindicated and the USA, UK, and other enablers should be fined thousands of dollars for their guilt.

        • Agreed, but I’d make it millions, not hundreds.

        • There is no case to answer.

  • Reportedly, one of the items published on the Bilderberger Conference agenda this year was “The Post Truth era.” In other words, “what do we do, now that the Truth is coming out?” Or, alternatively, “how can we make the Truth irrelevant in the future?” Everything is for sale, even the facts.

    Go figure.

  • As always the truth sets us free – from the lies of those who fear Julian Assange/WikiLeaks! Thanks again and forever – Team Caitlin! And what a woman of courage – Christine!

  • I don’t know how to help Assange. My congressional delegation in the US is part of the problem. I’m not on any social media.

    • Me too, TL. The world needs a coordinated effort to gather people like us to stand up for Julian Assange and other whistleblowers and world PEACE.

leave a comment