Indictments Unsealed Against Julian Assange
Press freedom is under constant attack both in the US and across the world. One of the highest profile battles on this front has been the one waged against award-winning Australian journalist, publisher, and founder of the nonprofit media organization, Wikileaks: Julian Assange.
In 2010, in partnership with five newspapers, Wikileaks published a series of documents and other media provided by US Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning, including classified documents evidencing war crimes committed by US forces during its war in Iraq. The US has since unsealed indictments against Assange, charging him with a number of crimes that well be discussing today.
Currently, Assange is languishing in a maximum-security prison in London, struggling to maintain his physical health, his sanity, and his connections with loved ones. And in the meantime, an international movement of human rights and press freedom advocates are desperately fighting for his freedom, and against his potential extradition to the United States.
Guest – Stephen Rohde is a constitutional law scholar, author and past Chair of the ACLU of Southern California. He’s also founder and Chair of Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace and a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Review of Books, TruthDig and LA Progressive.
Weaponizing Antisemitism: How the Israel Lobby Brought Down Jeremy Corbyn
Asa Winstanley has written an important book titled Weaponizing Antisemitism: How the Israel Lobby Brought Down Jeremy Corbyn. His book has a lessons for those working for social justice in the United States.
Corbyn and the socialists in the Labor party in England were crushed by the mounting of a massive campaign cynically labeling Corbyn as an antisemite. It was a preposterous charge that stuck. The neo- liberal Labor party changed after the influx of several hundred thousand young people and elected long time socialist activist, Jeremy Corbyn as its leader in 2015.
Despite the huge campaign against him, led by the Israeli lobby, Corbyn was almost elected as the Prime Minister in 2017. Had he won, the history, not only of England, but of the world wouldve been different. Over the years Corbyn became popular especially among hundreds of thousands of young people who had recently joined the labor party.
He got his start in the trade union movement. He spoke out against racism and fascism and for immigrant rights. He opposed privatization cuts, and austerity. He campaigned against wars and military occupations. Asa Winstanley writes that probably more than anything else, Corbyn was known among activists for his involvement in the Palestine, solidarity movement.
The possibility of Corbyn being elected terrified the right and its allies. The Israeli lobby’s campaign against Corbyn got help from British intelligence, the entire British media, the right wing of the Labor party and even the CIA.
The most powerful, well-healed part of the American pro-Israeli Lobby is AIPAC, The American Israeli Public Affairs Committee. Justice Democrats wrote that it is a sinister right wing group. They supported Donald Trump, endorsed 106 insurrection Republicans, and spent millions to defeat progressives targeting and trying to intimidate black and brown women candidates across the country, threatening to spend against them if they even slightly criticize Israel’s far right apartheid policies. They conflate criticism of the Israeli apartheid state of with antisemitism.
Guest – Asa Winstanley is an investigative journalist and author who writes primarily about Palestine and the Israeli lobby. He lives in London. He is an associate editor with The Electronic Intifada, the worlds leading Palestinian news site in the English language. Asa Winstanley is cohost of The Electronic Intifada.