Another day has passed, and there is still no official WikiLeaks statement on Julian Assange. WikiLeaks had said they were going to make an official announcement, but all that has happened so far is that they have posted a poll asking the public how best to go about proving that Julian is still alive. While this is technically an official announcement, many of us were hoping for more. What is happening at this stage of the game?
Having Julian Assange stand at his window in the Ecuadorian Embassy might not be such a good idea after all. If a sniper is able to take him out from nearly a mile away, I think we can all understand why Julian stays well away from his window these days. Assange clearly fears for his life and if he didn’t, he would just saunter over to the window, pull the curtain, and wave to everybody. He knows people are concerned about him, but he is right not to put his life at risk just to reassure us with a physical appearance, however fleeting it may be.
Lest you think I am being paranoid by suggesting that there could be a sniper lying in wait for him, just remember that Hillary Clinton once quipped that he should be taken out by a drone. Even if you say that it was just “a joke” and meant in jest only, what Secretary of State jokes about murdering somebody in front of other government officials? Many of us have no doubt whatsoever in our minds that if she or someone else were able to do this and get away with it, they would.
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) October 3, 2016
Speaking of putting his life at risk, Julian is one of the most extraordinary and heroic men on this planet and has already bravely done this for us by releasing documents that we should all be entitled to see and is getting very little support from the media. As George Orwell once said, “In times of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”
If H.L. Mencken was still around and practicing journalism today, he would probably be praising Julian Assange. But these days, the vast majority of journalists are mainly concerned with the brand that they represent. And if journalists don’t espouse the political ideologies of the publication they work for, they’ll either keep quiet or say whatever they think they should be saying, even if it’s the polar opposite of what they actually believe in. Anything to keep them working. But this is cowardly at the heart of it. Isn’t it the job of a journalist to seek out the truth and then present it to the public?
But what is even worse is when you get journalists who say that Assange isn’t giving us any truly titillating information and that Julian couldn’t possibly influence the upcoming election in any way. Because they’re so cynical about the world and political dealings themselves, they’ve lost any semblance of idealism that they may have once held and think that the rest of us just accept that most politicians are crooked and don’t actually mind. Well, they’re wrong. As evidenced by all of the concern for Julian Assange we’re seeing on the internet right now, I would respectfully suggest that many journalists are just as out of touch with the public as politicians are.
And isn’t it utterly fascinating how people are crawling out from everywhere now just to spread a bit of unhelpful and pointless gossip at this time when Julian is missing? Take “former colleague” James Ball, who worked with Assange for a whopping three months, way back in 2011. He has just decided to run to the press. But why? Well, he felt it was somehow newsworthy to let us all know that Julian has an aversion to “taking advice, anyone else having a power base, and being challenged – especially by women.” But how is this helpful to anyone, you may ask? And are we really meant to care? Is this all Assange’s enemies can give us?
Which brings me back to my original point. Julian has every reason to fear for his life. When governments, politicians, and journalists are all too power hungry and lazy to really care about the people they’re meant to represent, it takes someone with vast amounts of courage to stand up to them and continue to carry on with their work. Internet connections at embassies may be cut, but the fight will continue.
You can’t silence people forever, especially when you have global support. You can threaten them with drones, extradition, or rape charges, but the good work will still go on. Because when you back an ideology that actually means something to you, the people know it and they will stand beside you and fight. And this means more than any government or journalist ever could. So if Julian Assange or anyone at WikiLeaks is reading this right now, please, stay safe.
[Featured Image by Rosie Hallam/Getty Images]