Julian Assange Irreverenced
Whether you think Julian Assange is guilty of leaking state secrets or is a whistleblowing journalist is more a question of politics than law. Both colours of US partisan politics have furiously called for his extradition since his WikiLeaks shared thousands of files about the Iraq and Afghanistan wars around 2010-11.
The international Left including Michael Moore, plus celebrities like Pamela Anderson, have since spoken out in defence of Assange's own right to self-expression. His case asked a still unresolved question: in a time of liquid information and who controls it, at what point does journalism become international espionage?
If Assange were American like Bradley/Chelsea Manning, it might have been easier to hang, draw and quarter them; however, he's Australian, and believes in the moral truth of right and wrong in that monomaniacal way beloved of many with Asperger's Syndrome. His condition was revealed during later extradition proceedings what many had suspected from time, and as Psychology Today commented:
'Autism seems a dubious diagnosis, given Assange's extreme cognitive and social competence.'
but went on to correctly observe that
'Even if it's a correct diagnosis, there are many people with autism serving lengthy sentences in both the U.S. and UK.'
To add complexity to Assange's already controversial, none-more-zeitgeisty legend, he took a jolly to Sweden in the summer of 2010, in which he slept with at least two women.
It emerges that both were on the radical feminist activista scale of the international progressive movement, while Assange was accused of tampering with a condom (or 'Stealthing', as it has become latterly known. This new phenomenon was memorably portrayed in BBC3 TV drama I Will Destroy You, where a male lover stealthily removes his condom during otherwise consensual sex).
Once Assange's foreign adventures would have been lauded as a popular hero/journalist making hay while the sun shone, following those perfectly natural sexual urges, necessary for the furtherance of the procreative needs of the intercontinental solidariat.
However, complainant two, already chafing over discovering that Assange was texting her on his way from the previous girl's company, complained of consensual sex the night before (with a grumpily begrudged condom), followed by an allegedly unprotected wakeup call the next morning.
During the long years that Assange was in exile in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in the 2010s, the #MeToo movement came along and 'Changed the conversation' (if little of the behaviour it was trying to eradicate. Boys will be boys). Now surprise morning sex was seen as rape if so declared, far from warm and woozy hangover of the night before of legend – itself a move that would surely lead to the now regular 70,000 rape allegations per year in the UK.
Since, Assange has been in London's grim HMP Belmarsh, however, the Depp-Heard case has gone Depp's way, and Kevin Spacey has been exonerated of all historical charges of non-consensual touching in the US. All the while Assange languishes without charge, his political prisoner status undiminished; but intentionally tarnished, like all others accused of such things.
The mainstream media are conspicuously quiet on the assault of their trade, probably because Assange - Aspergers or no - was already seen as a hooded, Anonymous-style maverick, and quite into the hero-worship-like attention, or so it appeared.
From Elon Musk and Greta Thunberg to Gary Numan and Chris Packham, people with Asperger's often seem to have a very determined, non-emotional, non-nuanced relationship with right and wrong that is out of step with the multi-layered complexity of the world. They often comment on feeling like they're 'From another planet', wired differently. But as we see, it's still possible to thrive on this one.
The treatment of Assange was, however, discombobulating for the humblesnark left, Vice magazine noting:
'Left-wing thinkers from Michael Moore to Naomi Wolf defended Assange, with Moore calling the allegations “hooey.”'
Everyone knew sexual assault allegations only hit the deviant Right, surely? Especially in such a progressive country as Sweden? Sady, Doyle pointed to the reality:
'Particularly for progressives, there was a real reluctance to admit that one of “ours” could be guilty of something like that.'
This wasn't rape as the general public might expect, with a fashion for scope expansion that had been creeping since the early 2000s. Force, violence or harmful intent weren't mentioned, and you can only imagine Assange's discomfort at being questioned:
“Assange told police that he had sex with Ardin but did not tear the condom.”
What happened on tour used to stay on tour, between consenting adults etc … until it was more forcefully activated that consent on the night does not constitute consent in the morning. Particularly when it's been announced that the famous activist you've just slept with has just been accused of 'Stealthing' by a peer who you respect more than him. Vice again:
'In the days that followed, Ardin told a friend that she was still allowing Assange to stay with her, but they were not having sex because he had “exceeded the limits of what she felt she could accept.”'
Of course, those macho Aussies also like to sow their wild oats, particularly if they're long-term computer nerds who never got the girls after cricket matches at school. Better rely on a big reputation for outing political misbehaviour, and leave those pesky, life-defining urges out of it:
'Miss W met Assange at a seminar organized by Ardin, she told police. They later met up and went to her apartment, where they started to have sex. But Assange did not want to use a condom, Miss W said, so they stopped and eventually fell asleep. Later that night, she said, they woke up and had consensual sex, during which he “unwillingly” used a condom. But in the morning, Miss W said, she woke up to find Assange penetrating her without a condom.'
No one seems to have told Aydin or Assange that the international progressives are required not to fight amongst themselves. Feminism and journalistic integrity in exposing corruption are intersectional bedfellows, right, and can surely accommodate a bit of insufficiently risk-averse Scandinavian action? Naomi Wolf certainly hoped so:
'At the Huffington Post, feminist writer Naomi Wolf wrote that Assange was guilty of no more than “narcissistic” behavior: “I understand, from the alleged victims’ complaints to the media, that Assange is also accused of texting and tweeting in the taxi on the way to one of the women’s apartments while on a date,” she wrote'.
High functioning adults on the autistic spectrum are often legendary for their fastidiousness in organisation of course, and Assange was presumably texting from expedience, with dates to keep and beanos to attend. The British right wing press were bemused: traitor, pervert, hero or caught between the devil and the deep blue sea?
'The Daily Mail, for instance, noted that Ardin “had not only been the protegee of a militant feminist-academic, but held the post of ‘campus sexual equity officer’ while working at a local university, and speculated that she might have been out to get Assange because she was jealous that he also had sex with Miss W.'
The (once, in a time gone by) impressively rampant Assange was as unimpressed by this as Thunberg often seems by western politicians, or Musk seems to be by the majority of earthlings, and let out his inner tabloid humblesnark for a pronouncement meant for a time when he was free:
'“Sweden is the Saudi Arabia of feminism,” he said in one interview. “I fell into a hornets’ nest of revolutionary feminism.”'
The really useful thing about sexual allegations is the mysterious, ambiguous, essentially unprovable nature of the majority of them. If you really want to bring down a successful male in a time of 'Believe the Victims', it's nowadays more than possible. Well, it had been for a number of years before Amber Heard was found to have lied in court about domestic abuse and battery, anyway.
Stealthing and sly morning sex have moved from boys-will-be-boys to illegal in a few short years of hysterical, activista-helmed media outcries, buffeted along by the MeToo movement. Getting the public to hate someone for telling the truth, however non-Western, is more difficult than it was in the Age of Deference; add a habit of libidinous sex into the mix, and any political advisor will tell you it's game over if you spin it correctly.
By Sean Bw Parker
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