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December 16th 2010
Saving Assange from Fox News

Former Magnetic Island boy Julian Assange While former Magnetic Islander Julian Assange languishes in solitary confinement at London's Wandsworth Prison, a reader, Mr Mike Shearer, writes to highlight the attitude of Rupert Murdoch's Fox News commentators, Bill O'Reilly and Lt Col. Ralph Peters and why Assange should never be handed over to the US.

The O'Reilly Factor, the most watched cable show in America, had a short segment in which Brett Solomon from GetUp in Sydney and the American Lt Col Ralph Peters were “interviewed”.

Below is the best transcript I can derive because both Peters and the interviewer interrupted and talked over Solomon. You can see the YouTube copy (here).

BS: From our perspective I think it's important to ensure that [Julian Assange] is not actually demonised … Australians are basically saying that we don't want to see our citizen being persecuted and called a terrorist … [unintelligible interruption] … treated with the same respect that an American would be treated in America.

Interviewer: Well OK Ralph, I'll let you take that.

RP: That's the biggest crap(?) of bull since Bill Clinton said I did not have sex with that woman, as Clinton stated …

BS: You don't believe in the rule of law...

RP (interrupting): I do believe in the rule of law

BS: … or that a person should be tried? I mean, what you have said and many others have said is that he should be assassinated.

RP: Here's a fundamental problem. Assange is a cyberterrorist in war time, he's guilty of sabotage, espionage, crimes against humanity, he should be killed. I mean, absolutely.

BS: Actually the sapce between the citizens and the government needs to be reduced. We've seen essentially, and as Glen Beck says, that you know Assange is actually the Man of the Millenium. Why? Because it stops governments from lying to their people.

[At this point both the interviewer and Peters talked over Solomon]

Interviewer: Hell, I could care, I mean, that's just juvenile... I
mean, who cares?

RP: What we've been hearing from him is babytalk. We want him to die.

BS: We're talking about an Australian citizen...

Actually, an ex-Townsville (& Magnetic Island) Australian citizen.

Mike Shearer
Hermit Park

(It is worth remembering that The Townsville Bulletin is also owned by Rupert Murdoch. Ed.)

Julian Assange graphic: George Hirst

To add your comment,
or read those of others, see below

Saving Assange from Fox News
Jenny Stirling
December 16th 2010
You did that likeness George? Hmm it has captured something of his curiosity and distain. As for the moral of the story, there will be a mock trial and all hell is set to break loose. Wikileaks will certainly be a facor in the US presidential elections.
Mal Hamilton
December 16th 2010
Is it possible to buy a newspaper in Queensland that is not owned by Rupert Murdoch?

Those in the USA baying for Julian Assange's blood should rightly be more concerned about American citizens committing terrorist acts against other American citizens on American soil. Assange merely presents a softer, more visible target.

Haven't they found Osama yet?
Chris C
December 16th 2010
Agreed Mal - Isn't it interesting how quickly Assange was cornered (courtesy of the Swiss) and yet Osama (the reason for at least two wars) is still apparently free after all of these years and deaths?

Could it be that each of these seemingly contradictory outcomes (i.e. Assange neutralised and war continuing) represent exactly what is in the best interest of the US weapons industry(and quite possibly therefore, old Rupert as well)

Nice pic too George although, for the statue, I still prefer the idea of the fountain rather than the bust !
David Crusty Herron
December 16th 2010
Right or wrong, I feel strongly about this...

A rabid minority are seeking, by any means, the demise of Julian Assange, ("he should be killed", Lt Col Ralph Peters. USA), thinking to end Wikileaks and what it stands for. But I do not believe for one second that whatever happens in the next few weeks will bring an end to the outrage many of us are experiencing as a result of the revelations in the WikiLeak disclosures.

Elected governments, along with their powerful and insidious bureaucracies, have taken away our inalienable rights to self determination. Open, democratic, representational government is a farce. The Code of Secrecy & fallacy is the norm for all our governments actions. How can we exercise our rights if we are 'kept in the dark', lied to, and disenfranchised?

The democratic processes, for freedom of information and the rights of the individual, that should be the essential basis of our way of life are denied us.

It appears that our governments mandate no longer includes the provision for open, honest representational democratic government for the benefit of the people.

And further, In the light of what is happening in our own state, our own country, any thinking person would be forgiven for concluding that our governments finally have come to the misbegotten realisation that we the people, the people they govern are powerless and have no rights.

Once elected precious few of our representatives represent us or our needs. Oh they sometimes listen but they don't hear us. The well being of the people, the battlers, is no longer a consideration. They believe that they do not need to be honest and open in their governace. They believe that they can do whatever they like and that there is little we can legally do or say of influence to stop or guide them. They seem to think that we do not scare them at all.

But they are wrong. Julian Assange and his team have set out to do what many of us just talk about or are too scared to do. He has found a way, right or wrong, to remind those who rule us that we, the people still have the power not only to make our governments and their bureaucrats accountable but to restore, at least in part, some of the democratic process that is rightly ours.

Regardless of what is being said, or done, Julian with Wikileaks has set an example of how and exposed why "the space between the citizens and the government needs to be reduced" (Brett Solomon, GetUp!)

They may try to remove Julian Assange but others will follow and act more stridently until our governments not only listen but act accountably and openly in accord with the rights, needs and will of the people.
David Crusty Herron
December 16th 2010
In regard to Julian Assange & WikiLeaks; when our feral politicians state that they have a mandate to act in the national interest which nations interest do they mean?
George Hirst
December 16th 2010
Ta Chris and Jenny re the sketch. It's hard for us to get photos of the man that don't raise copyright so this way I can claim originality. Meanwhile the "fountain" will be up tomorrow. George Hirst Ed.
George Hirst
December 17th 2010
Thanks again Jen. It's probably appropriate that the drawing has no original as it is the first drawing I have undertaken with an electronic tablet. No pencil or paper just straight onto the screen. So, in keeping with the subject's passion, a computer generated image which can go anywhere instantly and in unlimited numbers. I am thinking about a T-shirt though. Cheers, George
jenny Stirling
December 17th 2010
Yes the sketch is good and I like it because it is interpretative. Perhaps you might like to put an 'original' up for auction to further highlight Magnetic Island and its link with this famous son. What other Australian community could have produced such a prodigy? Think about it: Magnetic Island has an online newspaper; access to a global commnunity including many back packers from Sweden; a history of political dissent; provides the joys of an unrestricted childhood; an amazing natural and beautiful environment which lends itself to the development of a 'critical' spirituality; and an ongoing committment to free speech. Perfect in every way.
December 21st 2010
Crusty - fully agree with you, the more people start to stand their ground against government lies and tyranny, the more extreme we see governments clamp down on 'political dissidents' (now absurdly relabelled 'terrorists') such as Julian Assange. It sickens me that America's neo-con AND republican politicians AND media goons are calling for his assasination on the basis that the USA has 'lost face'... no trial, no jury, they want him strung up - hung drawn and quartered it would seem, this is something akin to KGB or Nazi mindset...."silence the dissenter!" Luckily people ARE starting to wake up and I think we are in for a bumpy ride, we the people need to stand our ground and be strong - not be intimidated by fascist thugs such as Bill O Reilly and Ralph Peters, Hillary Clinton etc etc.

George - yes please - print the sketch of Julian Assange onto a White T-Shirt I will buy it for sure and I bet lots of others will! Sell them on ebay I reckon you'd sell loads!!!

PS Check out my youtube channel - I am Lemonyofthestate

Wish I could be back on Maggie Island I miss it like crazy!!!

What do you think? Send us your comments.

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