Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Assange and the He said She said

The press is full of it.... 

..sexual misconduct by Julian Assange that is.  And, while this is a great spectacle it is ultimately not that interesting.  Any trial is going to come down to a simple 'He said, she said' and while there may well be plenty of testimony it's unlikely that we will end up with a a full unbiased opinion of what actually took place. 

To be honest I don't care.  The ladies in question, driven either by the trauma of their experience, their virtuous desire for justice or a 'hell hath no fury' desire for revenge have reported an incident they believe breaks the law. Julian Assange almost certainly has a different interpretation of events...  and a court will decide if he either did, or didn't do something that breaches Sweden's laws. It will sell a lot of papers....

Neither outcome has any particular bearing on the activities of his brainchild Wikileaks

The fact that the case seems to have been badly handled by the Swedish authorities is largely a sideshow.  It seems likely that the way it has been handled falls short of the standards here for legal protection of information on a suspects identity - something they will no doubt get mauled for - but as far as I can see that all hinges on the original prosecutor who, when asked on the phone by a journalist if they had raised a warrant on Assange stupidly said 'yes' rather than 'no comment'.  Journalists we should remember are professionals in weedling information out of people... 

In fact the most interesting thing from my point of view is who tipped off the press?  .. and with what motive?  (...since it resulted in unproven but serious accusations about someone's private life becoming front page news around the globe)

But being Sweden, the press's sources have full legal protection...  so I'm not likely to find out anytime soon.

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