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SOLIDARITY marking 5 months since Julian Assange entered the Ecuadorian embassy/London!!

category international | anti-war / imperialism | news report author Wednesday November 21, 2012 07:55author by Ciaron Report this post to the editors

Monday marked 5 months since Julian Assange entered the Ecuadorian embassy!
*Daily solidarity vigil Ecuadoran embassy, Knightsbridge London (now 2-5pm)
*Hi tech placard

The slow motion crucifixion of Julian Assange and Bradley Manning
by Ciaron O'Reilly

We are back in front of the U.S. embassy Grosvenor Square London. It is huge, taking up an entire city block, its Golden Eagle sculpture astride the building looks ready to strike against any dissent to Pax Americana, armed police patrol the perimiter. We are standing in line stretched out confornting the edifice with our message "Free Bradley Manning!"

It is Bradley's 900th. day in custody since being arrested in Baghdad, tortured in Quantico and now going through the pre-trial motions of his militay tribunal at Ft. Meade, Maryland Somewhere along the line we adopted the discipline of whenever they take Bradley to court, we would go to the streets. Others have gathered today in solidarity at the gates of Ft. Meade and in the militay courtroom itself. As we maintain a disciplined silence. the audio of the video is played aloud on the amp we have dragged into town on the tube. The audio the U.S. state tried to suppress and is presently seeking revenge on Bradley Manning and Julian Assange for making it known.

All the warmaking state desires from civil society in order to carry out such crimes in these daze is disengagement, silence and sedation. They no longer require popular support to wage their wars that are increasingly undeclared, robotic and constant backdround muzac. All we are asked to do in these times at the centre of empire, wheteher that be London D.C. or Sydney, is to avert our gaze from the killing on the extremities of empire. Bradley and Julian are accused of offending this arrangement. WikiLeaks put the realities of the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan and the daily machinations of empire before us. That is why Bradley and Julian remain in the crosshairs of empire.

This December will mark two years since Julian Assange was taken into custody in England. He has been detained two years without charge by a European Extradition Request issued by a police officer in Sweden. We accompanied Julian through all his dozen court appearances in London from Horsferry to Woolwich to the High Court and the Supreme Court as he ran a gauntlet of character assassination and state harassment.

Here we are outside the Ecuadiran embassy where we have managed to maintain a daily solidarity presence since Julian fled there 5 months ago. This is the latest stage on a 2 year sojourn

Five months in, Irish Tom and Chilean Clara are the mainstays of the daily solidarity presence. Clara lived through the U.S. sponsored coup in Chile as a nurse tending to torture victims, her husband detained for 2 years. She is aware that the British prosecutor of Julian Assange had defended Gen. Pinochet previously when he was fighting an extradition order in England from Spain. Tom crossed the water as a teenager many moons ago. He is aware that the solicitor defending Julian Assange is Gareth Peirce who freed the Birmingham 6, the Guikford 4, Maguire 7 and other Irish set up on bogus charges. We stand silently confronting the diplomatic police surrounding the embassy waiting to arrest Julian should he emerge.

There was a 24/7 solidarity presence maintained during the period before the granting of assylum when British Foreign Minister Hague was threatening to invade the embassy. The government has downsized the police presence since assylum was granted. The present cost of maintaining the siege is reported as 11,000 quid a day.

The way I look at it is if you were one of the millions who marched against this war in 2003, you implicitly incited Bradley Manning, Julian Assange and others to seriously nonviolently resist this war. Now that they are in legal jeopardy we have an obligation to accompany them in solidarity as the state places them in chains and confinement.

As we stand in the light rain a block up from Harrods assuring Julian he is not forgotten or abandoned we do not know when and where this will end. Neither, it seems, do the cops. We regret the lack of courage and solidarity for Julian and Bradley of those who claim to be the peace movement and are reminded of the words of Fr. Daniel Berrigan SJ

"We have assumed the name of peacemakers, but we have been, by and large, unwilling to pay any significant price. And because we want the peace with half a heart and half a life and will, the war, of course, continues, because the waging of war, by its nature, is total--but the waging of peace, by our own cowardice, is partial. So a whole will and a whole heart and a whole national life bent toward war prevail over the mere desire for peace…" - Daniel Berrigan

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author by fredpublication date Wed Nov 21, 2012 10:08Report this post to the editors

Fr Daniel is so right!

Two of our own more committed anti war activists arrested this week too:

Taken from Galway Alliance Against War FB page tuesday morning:

'An attack has been made on the peace movement in ireland- again. This morning 2 activists with Galway Alliance Against War were arrested on ridiculous charges of criminal damage. Margaretta D'Arcy, a woman of advanced years, and GAAW PRO Niall Farrell were nominated by the Galway anti-war group to participate in the global week of action against drone-warfare by holding a peaceful protest on the runway of Shannon warport. The 2 participants staged the protest with placards, yet the incompetance of the airport security meant that they were not spotted and as they could have been a serious safety risk to incoming flights they contacted airport security to alert them. They were subsequently removed from the runway.
Early this morning the 2 activists were arrested and taken to Mill Street Garda Station.
We ask people to call the Clare division on 065 6848100 and ask- why have these peace representatives been arrested? when will they be released? why are the planes not searched at shannon airport that contain killers and their killing machines? what about the criminal damage by the Irish government to our neutrality and to the people of Ireland? Are they just trying to hide their own incompetance by now taking procedings. Shame!'

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