I had intended doing a follow up before now but Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Chris Hedges had made the same comparison. Unfortunately his videos are no longer available on YouTube as they’re were hosted by RT which has been banned completely because of its Russian connection regardless of content.
When I first wrote on this subject last year human rights lawyer Steven Donziger was facing a 6 month prison sentence having already served an unprecedented pretrial term of two years under house arrest. Julian Assange had spent those two years in HMP Belmarsh awaiting a judgement on whether he can be deported to the USA.
The phrase “Weapon of Mass Distraction” is how Steven describes the way he’s been treated, and Julian has been used that way for a decade! What they have in common is that neither of them has committed any offence either legally or morally, they’re being used as scapegoats to distract from the real criminals
Steven has served his time in prison, but he’s unable to resume his legal career or travel abroad until his passport is restored. But he refuses to give up – his case has gained widespread attention. He insists that it’s not about him but about his clients – the indigenous people of Ecuador!Chevron don’t like people like Steven making waves, but their persecution of him has created a Tsunami!
You already know why Assange is being persecuted, he revealed war crimes that US governments hoped to keep secret. Donziger stood up against a more powerful opponent than the US Government, a multi-national corporation who preferred to buy a judge and prosecutor when the federal prosecutor declined to take up the case.
Steven is about to get his life back together, unable to practice law he’s falling back on is previous profession as a journalist. Chevron tried to break him but failed! Julian’s marriage to Stella Morris seems to me like the condemned man being granted his last wish. It’s long been my opinion that it would suit the United States for Julian to die in U.K. and. POTUS Pilate could wash his hands of the injustice!
Julian and Steven are both victims of a US legal system which defies the doctrine of the separation of powers – POTUS and SCOTUS and are usually aligned for the same reason our House of Lords is mostly conservative, the Prime Minister gets to select them 😀
Steven was asked why he was asking for a presidential pardon for a crime of which he wasn’t guilty and he explained that he had exhausted all other legal avenues. He’s personally seeking compensation for what he’s suffered over the last few years but, more importantly, he’s seeking justice for his clients – the indigenous people of Ecuador!
Julian’s case is being recognised by journalists as an attack on a free press, I see it as an attack on his human rights! What Julian and Steven have in common is that they’re victims of the injustice they seek to denounce! Julian may be remembered as a martyr, Steven will continue the fight for universal justice!
Here’s a link to the #FreeDoniger campaign https://actionnetwork.org/forms/demand-president-biden-pardon-steven-donziger?source=twitter&
To help finance his continuing fight against Chevron you can do so here https://www.donzigerdefense.com/
We’ve seen what People Power can do in Steven’s case, we need to pull out all the stops for Julian. If we’re not legally allowed to protest we should do it anyway. Civil disobedience is the only way working people worldwide have ever achieved any semblance of equality with those they had hitherto there masters
I feel I’m a bit of a hypocrite in advocating direct action in which I’m not physically able to participate, but is that any different from old men sending young men to fight their wars? We must fight injustice wherever it occurs
Priti Patel has, as expected, approved Julian’s extradition but Joe Biden is under increasing pressure from various sources. Jean-Luc Mélenchon has offered, if elected Prime Minister, to grant Julian French citizenship. The President of Mexico boycotted the Summit of the Americas because of the exclusion of Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua; but he met Joe Biden afterwards and offered sanctuary to Julian.
It remains to be seen what effect the change of government in Australia will have. An increasing number of politicians want to bring him home but Anthony Albanesi, now he’s Prime Minister, is more cautious – he doesn’t want to upset the Yanks 🙄
Steven’s case is different, he’s served his sentence but he’s not free to execercise his profession. He hasn’t given up, but neither have Chevron. They have a team of sock puppets with nowt to do but target anyone supporting him. I’ve had three replies like this one!