Pack a scrum of solidarity for Assange & Manning!
DONATE to the Pvt Manning Family Fund - and win a Rugby League World cup 2013 football signed by Julian Assange!
*The above site & bank account has been set up to defray the costs of Pvt. Mannng's Wales based family in their tranatlantic
visits to the one they love imprisoned in Ft. Leavenworth
FPC Manning who tranisted through Shannon Airport to the war on Iraq (now 4 years into a 35 year sentence at Ft. Leavebworth military prison, Kansa, USA) & family and Julian Assange (now 500+ days surrounded by London' Metropolitan police & a variety of state agencies at the Ecuadorian embassy/ London) & WikiLeaks need your help.
They are in jeopardy for exposing the nature of wars millions of us marched against!
As Australia takes on the U.S.A. in the Rugby League World Cup 2013 series quarter final at Wrexham Racecourse this
Saturday, we will return to the ground to offer solidarity support Australia and chat to Rugby League fans about Assange
We will conduct a solidarity from 11 am vigil up to kick off at 1pm.
***The article below has been published in Rugby League Week magazine hitting the news stands today in Australia.
Thursday Nov 14th. 2013
*ARTICLE FROM RUGBY LEAGUE WEEK MAGAZINE, AUSTRALIA
AUSTRALIAN players have been urged to stick it to Uncle Sam by visiting exiled activist Julian Assange ahead of their quarter final clash with the USA in Wrexham.
In a twist to a new sporting rivalry, the Kangaroos face a decision whether to join a long list of Aussie athletes to champion a political cause.
Currently holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London in fear of a death sentence in the US, Assangehas extended an invitation to meet through ‘bodyguard’ Ciaron O’Reilly.
Born in Townsville, Assange has also signed a RLWC 2013 ball which has been doing the rounds throughout the tournament, raising funds and awareness for Chelsea Manning (formerly Bradley).
Manning is currently serving 35 years imprisonment for releasing classified military documents, a charge to which Wikileaks founder Assange has been implicated as a co-conspirator.
“We are non-violent and we don’t want to disrupt the World Cup at all…in fact I’m a big sports fan,” says spokesman O’Reilly, a relative of former Queensland captain Ken McCaffery.
“But if there are any players in the Australian team with sympathy for Julian’s or Chelsea’s case, we can arrange a meeting.
“There’s a history of sports activism in Australia going back to Peter Norman and the Black Power salute at the 1968 Olympics, and more recently Wally Lewis and the maritime workers in 1998.”
The Assange team are known to be particularly interested in gaining the support of Johnathan Thurston, due to his shared Townsville ties and his advocacy for indigenous causes.
The prospect of Tim Sheen’s men placing international focus on this weekend’s contest by visiting such a divisive figure may seem remote.
However Australians throughout the past century have put their neck out to support numerous social issues.
The past four decades have seen team boycotts of South African, Russian, Zimbabwean and Pakistani events.
In league, TimanaTahu famously walked out of New South Wales camp in 2010 for an alleged racial slur used by coaching staff.
Assange ally O’Reilly, jailed for disarming a B-52 bomber in protest over the Iraq war, grew up supporting Brisbane Brothers and knew Joe Kilroy through his work with a West End orphanage.
He was part of the 1982 Commonwealth Games protests for Aboriginal rights in Brisbane, coming face-to-face with policemen Wayne Bennett and Mal Meninga.
Though he has been used to issue statements and shield Assange from large crowds in the past, he says he has no desire to get physical.
“These days I’m a creative opportunist into non-threatening ways of promoting an anti-war message,” says O’Reilly.
“Our group was at the previous Wrexham game, because Private Manning has family in Wales.
“We cheered the Welsh against the US and played music through the game and we’ll definitely support Australia against the Americans.”
AUSTRALIAN SPORTS ACTIVISM THROUGH THE DECADES
1968 – Silver medallist for the 200m, Peter Norman supports Black Power salute.
1972-1991 – Australian cricket and rugby union teams boycott South Africa over apartheid.
1980 – Tracey Wickham and Raelene Boyle among Australians boycotting Moscow Olympics due to Russian invasion of Afghanistan.
1998 – Wally Lewis supports Maritime Workers Union in wharf conflict.
2000 – Cathy Freeman wins 400m gold and does lap of honour with Aboriginal flag.
2007 – PM announces Australian cricketers will not tour Zimbabwe due to Mugabe regime.
2008 – Australian cricketers pull out of Pakistan tour due to terrorism threats.
2010 – TimanaTahu walks out of NSW State of Origin camp due to racism row.
2012 – Boxer Damien Hooper wears Aboriginal shirt to Olympic bout.
2013 – Cricketer Fawad Ahmed refuses to wear alcohol sponsors