2011年1月5日水曜日

アサンジ情報の暴露

スウェーデンは、女性の就業率が高く、女社会と言われる。
二人の女性への避妊具の破損と未使用によるアサンジの性行為で、婦女
暴行(性的虐待)の逮捕状が申請され指名手配となった。
一人の女性は、場所を提供したと言うことだから、誘った可能性が高い。
もう一人の女性も熱狂的な支持者だったから、場所を提供、誘った可能性
が高い。
どちらにしてもアサンジを追跡していた米工作員らが、哲学や女性らの
弱みを利用したように見える。

アサンジ逃走報道では、「絶えず支持者の計らいで移動している」との
ことだったが、この例を見ると滞在先の性行為は習慣だったように見える。
逃走も危機意識は深刻ではなかったようだ。
他人の情報ばかりを漏洩していたが、アサンジ自身の行動も漏洩した。
HIV検査で非感染との結果が出ておらず、殺人未遂も追加される可能性も
ある。自分は安全な場所にいて、自分の金銭や売名、性欲等の欲望のため
に、他人を危険にさらす。CIAはどこまで工作するのだろうか。


内部告発ビジネスモデルの確立


Julian Assange Attorney Furious About Leaking Of Police Report About Assange Rape Case


The Full Julian Assange Interview - Frost Over The World (WikiLeaks)


WikiLeaks Julian Assange - Conspiracy - Federal Crimes - Extradition


---【海外事件簿】アサーンジが落ちたセックスの罠 嫉妬か陰謀か…秘められた“スウェーデンの夜”---
2011.1.2 18:00
http://sankei.jp.msn.com/world/europe/110102/erp1101021802002-n1.htm

 スウェーデンから性犯罪容疑で国際手配された内部情報告発サイト「ウィキリークス」の創設者、ジュリアン・アサーンジ容疑者(39)は12月7日に英国で逮捕され、現在、保釈中だ。スウェーデンへの身柄送還の是非をめぐる審理は1月に本格化する見通しだが、同容疑者を追い詰めているのは、ウィキリークスが進める米外交公文25万点公開とは無関係な、女性2人との性関係だった。 “スウェーデンの夜”に何が起きた?

「アサーンジにエイズ検査を」
 「空港で寝泊まりしているようなものだ」とも語ったことがあるアサーンジ容疑者がスウェーデンの首都ストックホルムに招待されたのは昨年8月。中道左派、社会民主労働党のキリスト教系団体が主催した「戦争の最初の犠牲者は真実」という講演会だった。
 多くの場合、ネットインタビューなどにしか応じない同容疑者本人が登場した講演会は14日に開催され、無事に終了した。しかし、その6日後の20日午後、2人の女性が連れだって「アサーンジ氏にエイズ検査を強制的に受けさせることは可能か」と、警察に相談に訪れたのだ。
 フランス通信(AFP)によると、2人は当初、「告訴の意思を持っていたわけではなかった」というが、応対した婦人警官が検察官に報告。直ちに婦女暴行と虐待罪の容疑で告訴手続きが取られた。この動きはその日のうちに有力タブロイド紙の知るところとなり、瞬く間に大ニュースとして世界を駆けめぐった。
 事件を詳細に追う地元消息筋によると、その直後、検事側はいったん「婦女暴行」については嫌疑なしとしたものの、高等検事が11月18日、最終的に婦女暴行、性的虐待、強制わいせつ罪の容疑でアサーンジ氏への逮捕状を申請し、国際手配の手続きを取った。
 同容疑者は10月下旬にスウェーデンを出国し、一時、所在不明となった。

ミスAのケース
 アサーンジ容疑者が2人の女性に加えた「性犯罪」は、どのようなものだったのか。英裁判所の審理では「ミスA」「ミスW」と呼ばれた被害者の実名は明らかにされなかったが、地元消息筋によると、ミスAはなんと、講演会に同容疑者を招待した張本人の社民党員、アンナ・アルディーンさん(31)。
 地元紙の報道などによると、ミスAは11日にストックホルムに到着した同容疑者に自分のアパートを提供。その夜から2人は性的関係を持ったという噂もあり、ミスAは警察に対し、13日夜のセックスで避妊具が破れたのは同容疑者が「故意に破損させたためだ」と訴えたという。
 また、AFPによると、英国での審理に派遣されたスウェーデンの検察官は、同容疑者が14日にミスAを押し倒し、この行為が強制わいせつに当たると主張。18日には同容疑者が避妊具を使用せず性行為に及び、同じ夜には「この女性(ミスA)の品位を侵害する様態のわいせつ行為を故意に行った」としている。

ミスWのケース
 もう1人の被害者、ミスWは講演会当日、ピンクのジャケットを着て最前列に陣取り、アサーンジ容疑者に熱い視線を送った。本名をソフィア・ヴィレーンという20歳(一説には27歳)の女性は、同容疑者を英雄視するファンで、講演会をネットで知って、仕事を休んで首都から約80キロ離れた町からやってきた。
 講演会後も同容疑者の友人らとともに残り、その夜、映画館で同容疑者と2人だけになり、再会を約束。2日後の16日夜、2人はミスWのアパートで避妊具を使って、さらに翌朝は避妊具なしで性交渉に及んだ。このときミスWは眠っていたと主張しているという。だが、その後、ミスWはアサーンジ容疑者に朝食を用意し、同容疑者はストックホルムに戻った。

ばれた“浮気”
 ところが地元紙などの情報によると、アサーンジ容疑者との再会を望んだミスWは、同容疑者の携帯に電話をしても連絡がつかなくなったことから困惑し、講演会を実質的に切り盛りしたミスAに電話し、同容疑者の所在を聞き出そうとした。このため、ミスAは同容疑者の“浮気”に感づき、ミスWと話し合い、警察に相談にゆくことを決めたという。
 AFPによると、ミスAは自らのブログに「政治学者、コミュニケーター、起業家であり、宗教や男女同権、フェミニズムなどに専門知識のあるフリーライター」と自分のことを書いている。消息筋によると、彼女は左派フェミニストで、野党・社会民主労働党のキリスト教系団体の幹部(政治局員)を務める同党の将来有望な人材だ。
 また、同筋によると、ミスAは、2010年1月には「合法的復讐(ふくしゆう)の7カ条」とのタイトルで女性を裏切った男に復讐する方法をブログに書き込んだことがあり、アサーンジ容疑者の“浮気”に対する報復を開始したとの見方もなされている。

新しい女性保護法
 アサーンジ氏への容疑は、あまりに気楽で安易な性交渉で自ら墓穴を掘った感もあるが、2人の女性の怒りを買って訴えられた同容疑者が「加害者」とまで言えるものなのだろうか。
 地元消息筋は、背景には2001年に改正された新女性保護法があると指摘する。同法では、女性の申し立てがあれば担当検事の判断で「加害者」の事情聴取なしに起訴申請が可能で、「女性側の明確な合意」のない性行為はあくまでも「性的暴力」となる。
 このためにスウェーデンでは近年、数千件の起訴が行われるものの、実際に有罪になるのはうち10件にも満たないのが実情。だが、アサーンジ事件の担当検事は「男が有罪となるより、まず起訴されることに一定の女性保護の意味がある」と語っているという。

ネットでは陰謀論も
 外交公文を暴露された米国政府は、アサーンジ容疑者に対してスパイ罪や窃盗罪の適用を検討し、何とかウィキリークスの動きを止めようと必死になっている。ネットなどでは、今回の事件は、すでにアフガニスタンやイラク関連の内部文書の暴露で米政府を震撼(しんかん)させていた同容疑者を“別件逮捕”するための謀略だったとの陰謀説も流れた。
 確かに、スウェーデンの連立政権の核となる保守系「穏健党」は米政府と極めて良好な関係を保ち、情報機関の協力関係も強力だといわれている。仮に陰謀だったとすれば、米情報機関はかなり手回し良く“工作員”を埋め込んでいたことになる。「アサーンジ封じ」が目的なら、もっと効率のよい方法もあったはずで、陰謀説を否定する証拠はないが、かといって積極的に肯定する材料もない。いまのところ陰謀説はごく少数派だ。
 ただひとつ確かなのは、さまざまな報道などで同容疑者の「性犯罪」の中身が明らかになるにつれ、政府や企業の内部情報を洗いざらい白日の下にさらすことが善であると主張するアサーンジ容疑者の“夜の行状”の情報公開も進んでしまったということだろう。

【被害者の訴えを中心としたアサーンジ容疑者の性交渉】(AFP、消息筋がまとめた地元紙報道から)
 11日 同容疑者を講演会に呼んだミスAの自宅に宿泊。その夜から自由意思による性交渉開始との説も(ミスAは否定)
 13日 ミスAと交渉(ミスAは避妊具が破れたと主張)
 14日 講演会当日。ミスAを押し倒して性交渉とミスAは主張
 16日 ミスWの自宅で性交渉(避妊具を使用)
 17日 朝、ミスWとさらに性交渉(避妊具なし)。ミスWは眠っていたと主張
 18日 ミスAと避妊具なしで。夜にはミスAの「品位を侵害するようなわいせつ行為」
 20日 アサーンジ容疑者がミスAの自宅を退去。ミスAとミスWが警察署に届け


---Enough with the Julian Assange hero worship---
Submitted by Bill Weinberg on Sun, 12/26/2010 - 18:19.
http://www.ww4report.com/node/9282

We are probably risking getting our website sabotaged by saying it, but the unthinking cult of personality that has swelled around WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is appalling on several counts. For those who can see past the groupthink glorification, it reveals another example of the dissident space traditionally held by the left being assumed by the populist right-a frightening and growing phenomenon. We will make this case primarily in the words of Assange himself, and his supporters. So, as the ubiquitous catch-phrase in his defense goes, "Don't shoot the messenger"...

Demonizing "revolutionary feminism"
The most blatantly irritating thing is abject demonization of the women who have made the charges of sexual abuse against Assange. In any other context, the summary dismissal of a woman's rape accusations would be seen as utterly politically incorrect. But Assange gets away with anti-feminist rhetoric that would do Rush Limbaugh proud. In an interview now receiving widespread coverage in the British press (e.g. The Telegraph, Dec. 26), Assange says: "Sweden is the Saudi Arabia of feminism... I fell into a hornets' nest of revolutionary feminism." Assange added that one of the women who said she was assaulted took a "trophy photo" of him lying naked in her bed. (TMI, Julian.)

Especially sickening is Naomi Wolf, who sneers in Huffington Post at the international "Dating Police" that have snared Assange. Flaunting her supposed creds as a "longtime feminist activist" in the opening sentence, she writes that "Assange is accused of having consensual sex with two women, in one case using a condom that broke." A Dec. 17 account in The Guardian (based on Swedish police documents that were-ahem-leaked) paints a rather different picture. (E.g.: "She told police that she had tried a number of times to reach for a condom but Assange had stopped her by holding her arms and pinning her legs.") John Pilger, who presumably wasn't there when the putative leg-pinning took place, nonetheless told ABC Sydney on Dec. 8 the case against Assange is a "political stunt." Wolf's glib dismissal of the allegations is especially ironic in light of her own sexual harassment claims against Harold Bloom, which many had similarly dismissed as spurious (e.g. Meghan O'Rourke in Slate, Feb. 25, 2004).

The Cuban connection -or not?
The apparent ties of one Assange accuser to Cuban dissident organizations is being used as evidence that she was part of a "honey-trap" arranged by US intelligence agents. The Miami Herald informed us Dec. 8: "She visited Cuba about four times between 2002 and 2006 as a representative of Swedish social democrats, said Manuel Cuesta Morua, head of Cuba's Arco Progresista, a social-democratic dissident group." But Arco Progresista-like most of the groups highlighted in the accuser's Uppsala University thesis on Cuban democratic opposition-is a left dissident group, not linked to the right-wing "gusano" establishment in Miami (or, presumably, to the CIA). If anyone has really got dirt on Arco Progresista, we'd like to hear it.

Whither Israel Shamir?
A refreshing voice of dissent from the kneejerk vilification of Assange's accusers is Katha Pollitt in the current edition of The Nation, who despairs that "when it comes to rape, the left still doesn't get it." She also finds that a key source of the "honeytrap" theory is the bizarre Israel Shamir (who we are informed by the British anti-fascist watchdog Searchlight has an alter ego as Swedish anti-Semitic writer "Joran Jermas"). Follow this carefully...

Pollitt notes claims by blogger Mark Crespin Miller that "Assange accuser 'Miss A' had 'interacted' in Cuba with an anti-Castro women's group supported by terrorist and former CIA agent Luis Posada Carriles." (Posada Carriles is indeed utterly sinister, but what does "interacted" mean, Miller?) Pollitt comments:

You would think the left would be more sensitive to charges of guilt by association-since when did marching in a demonstration mean you sign on to everything its supporters support? By those lights, everyone who went to an ANSWER-sponsored march against the Iraq War thinks North Korea is a Marxist paradise.

And everyone who believes and promotes the "information" that "Miss A" is a CIA "honeytrap" is an anti-Semite and a Holocaust denier. Because the original source for that story is one Israel Shamir, writing in Counterpunch and vigorously defended by Counterpunch editor and Nation columnist Alexander Cockburn, who also belittles the accusations as "unsafe sex and failure to phone his date the following day." I spent a few hours on www.israelshamir.net and learned that: "the Jews" foisted capitalism, advertising and consumerism on harmonious and modest Christian Europe; were behind Stalin's famine in Ukraine; control the banks, the media and many governments; and that "Palestine is not the ultimate goal of the Jews; the world is." There are numerous guest articles by Holocaust deniers, aka "historical revisionists." We have now produced on the left an echo chamber like that on the far right, where the scurrilous charges of marginal fanatics are disseminated through electronic media and end up, cleansed of their original associations, as respectable opinion.

The predictably vile Counterpunch has of course wasted no time in providing a forum for the ultra-vile Shamir's conspiracy theories in the Assange case. New York magazine meanwhile touts claims (admittedly from right-wing sources) that Shamir may actually work for WikiLeaks. (More about this below...)

Assange the Teabagger?
Equally disconcerting are Assange's recent comments to Time magazine expounding his political philosophy-which turns out to be fashionably muddle-headed and reactionary. This is winning Assange some friends among our (supposed) enemies. In a post entitled "Julian Assange: Villain or Victim?," the Virginia-based Teabagger blog Capitol Rush approvingly quotes from the Time interview (emphasis added):

"[The US] Constitution comes out of a revolutionary movement and has a Bill of Rights appraised by James Madison and others that includes a nuanced understanding for the balancing of power of [the] states in relation to the government" He continues, "The United States has some immutable traditions, which, to be fair, are based on the French Revolution and the European Enlightenment. The United States' Founding Fathers took those further and the federalism of the United States also, of relatively powerful states trying to constrain federal government from becoming too centralized. [They] also added some important democratic controls and understandings. So there is a lot of good that has historically come from the United States."

Assange continues by saying, "But after World War II, the federal government of the United States started sucking the resources to the center, and the power of states started to diminish. Interestingly, the First Amendment started overriding states' laws around that time, which I see as a function of increasing central power in the United States. The US saw the French Revolution and it also saw the behavior of the UK and the other kings and dictatorships, so it intentionally produced a very weak President. The President was, however, given a lot of power for external relations, so as time has gone by the presidency has managed to exercise its power through its foreign affairs function."

Woah, Nelly! Does Assange really think it is a bad thing that "the First Amendment started overriding states' laws"? The only thing he can possibly mean by this is that states cannot make laws abridging free speech-which has not been the case since "after World War II," but since the post-Civil War 14th Amendment, extending Bill of Rights restrictions to the state governments: "No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

All the gains of the civil rights movement are predicated on this fundamental principle, which is why Jim Crow defenders put forth the bogus doctrine of "state sovereignty"-now being revived by the most noxious elements of the anti-Obama backlash. How strange for a supposed First Amendment advocate like Assange to be echoing this poisonous rhetoric. Julian, if you are reading this-can you please explain what the hell you mean?

Dissidents hung out to dry?
The voluminous diplomatic communications seemingly dumped on the Web more or less indiscriminately by WikiLeaks of course contain much incriminating dirt on authoritarian regimes around the world-and connivance with them by Western powers. Among the many revelations is British training of a Bangladeshi paramilitary force that rights groups call a "death squad" and that even the US State Department derided (in private) as culpable of gross violations. (The Guardian, Dec. 21)

But those responsible for passing on incriminating information to diplomats may face repercussions on the ground. Reuters reports Dec. 25:

Zimbabwe's attorney general plans to set up a commission to investigate possible treason charges against locals over briefings with US diplomats reported in confidential State Department cables released by WikiLeaks.

The move appears to be targeting Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, following state media reports that hawks in President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party wanted an official probe into Tsvangirai's briefings with the US ambassador in Harare.

In comments cited in one US State Department cable obtained by WikiLeaks, Tsvangirai appeared to suggest that his Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) was not genuine in calling for the lifting of Western sanctions against ZANU-PF.

There is admittedly a certain irony in the fact that Robert Mugabe's regime may prosecute dissidents for talking to the US while the White House may prosecute Assange for revealing those conversations. But are Assange and his supporters going to loan any solidarity to the dissidents if they do face prosecution? Or they are all dupes of US imperialism, and we don't care about their rights?

In Belarus, WikiLeaks and Israel Shamir have been directly implicated in repression-reportedly passing on to the regime leaked evidence that opposition figures were in communication with Western governments. From The Guardian Dec. 23:

Assange defended one of WikiLeaks' collaborators, Israel Shamir, following claims Shamir passed sensitive cables to Belarus's dictator, Alexander Lukashenko. Lukashenko has arrested 600 opposition supporters and journalists since Sunday's presidential election. The whereabouts and fate of several of the president's high-profile opponents are unknown.

Of Shamir, Assange said: "WikiLeaks works with hundreds of journalists from different regions of the world. All are required to sign non-disclosure agreements and are generally only given limited review access to material relating to their region. We have no reason to believe these rumours in relation to Belarus are true."

Neocons love Assange
The crowning irony of the Assange affair may be that much of the leaked diplomatic material actually vindicates the very hardline interventionists that the WikiLeaks cult hopes to undermine. Gloats the neocon Jewish Policy Center:

The WikiLeaks documents demonstrate that the White House's Middle East policy is based on a cloud of mythologies wholly rejected and contradicted by the analysis of American diplomats and allies in the region... Arab states throughout the Middle East have called upon the United States to stop Iran's nuclear program by any means (and without preconditions). Saudi Arabia King Abdullah calls Iran "evil" and urges the US to "cut the head off the snake," while the Saudi ambassador to Washington recalls the king's "frequent exhortations to the US to attack Iran." The king of Bahrain says Iran's nuclear program "must be stopped," and according to another cable, "the danger of letting it go on is greater than the danger of stopping it." The Emariti Crown Prince Bin Zayed explains the danger of appeasing Iran: "Ahmadinejad is Hitler."

WikiLeak's uncovering of US atrocities in Iraq and Afghanistan is morally unassailable, and we owe every support to Bradley Manning, the courageous military whistle-blower who now faces charges for his leak. Nothing we say here changes that. But a bandwagon is still subject to the pathologies of mass psychology-even if it is a left-wing bandwagon. And if you look at the actual politics, the Julian Assange bandwagon isn't even all that left-wing.


---Accusations against Assange's accuser---
This blog originally appeared on Salon's Broadsheet on December 7, 2010.
http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/41990.html

You don't have to be a conspiracy theorist to find the timing of Interpol's warrant for the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who turned himself in to British authorities this week, curious.

The charges - "one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation and one count of rape," according to a statement from Scotland Yard - were brought against him in Sweden last August, yet he suddenly graduated to "most wanted" status just after releasing over a thousand leaked diplomatic cables in late November? It would be irresponsible of journalists, bloggers and average citizens of countries most eager to plug the gushing WikiLeaks not to wonder if those dots connect.

Still, as the New York Times put it, "there is no public evidence to suggest a connection," which some members of the public seem to find unbearably frustrating. With no specific target for their suspicions and no easy way to find one, folks all over the blogosphere have been settling for the next best thing: making light of the sexual assault charges and smearing one of the alleged victims.

By Sunday, when Keith Olbermann retweeted Bianca Jagger's link to a post about the accuser's supposed CIA ties - complete with scare quotes around the word "rape" - a narrative had clearly taken hold: Whatever Assange did, it sure wasn't rape-rape. All he did was fail to wear a rubber! And one woman who claims he assaulted her has serious credibility issues anyway. She threw a party in his honour after the fact and tried to pull down the incriminating tweets. Isn't that proof enough? The only reason the charges got traction is that, in the radical feminist utopia of Sweden under Queen Lisbeth Salander, if a woman doesn't have multiple orgasms during hetero sex, the man can be charged with rape. You didn't know?

Even Naomi Wolf - Naomi Effin' Wolf! - has taken a public swipe at Assange's accusers, using her status as a "long-time feminist" to underscore the absurdity of "the alleged victims... using feminist-inspired rhetoric and law to assuage what appears to be personal injured feelings”.

Wow. Admittedly, I don't have as much experience being a feminist as Wolf has, but when I see a swarm of people with exactly zero direct access to the facts of a rape case loudly insisting that the accusation has no merit, I usually start to wonder about their credibility. And their sources.

Wolf links to exactly one, an article in British tabloid the Daily Mail. "Using a number of sources including leaked police interviews," writes Richard Pendlebury, "we can begin to piece together the sequence of events which led to Assange's liberty being threatened by Stockholm police rather than Washington, where already one US politician has called on him to be executed for 'spying'."

Well! A reasonable person might be sceptical of information coming from a single anonymous source via a publication known for highly sensationalised reporting, sure, but in this case, there are a number of them.

That Daily Mail article also helped to inspire a December 3 Gizmodo post in which Jesus Diaz boldly asserted, "While you can say Assange is a douchebag for not putting a condom on and continuing after the woman requested he use a condom, there was no rape accusation in both cases." The other source for that claim was an AOL News article that relied on (hey, look!) the same Daily Mail piece, a Swedish tabloid, and statements from Assange's lawyers to cobble together a theory of what happened and why Assange was charged. Rock solid!

To Diaz and Gizmodo's credit, they quickly posted an update upon learning that the Swedish prosecution office had "issued a notice saying that they are charging Assange with rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion." Diaz added, "Obviously, this is now a completely different issue altogether. Rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion are extremely grave accusations. This is not the 'sex by surprise' accusation that was discussed before." (I don't know that I'd go as far as "a completely different issue altogether" - Feministe's Jill Filipovic wrote a terrific explanation of why "sex by surprise" actually is a pretty big deal - but good on him for acknowledging that much.)

Still, the notion that consensual, unprotected sex equals rape in Sweden (despite millions of Swedish fathers walking around free today) continues zipping around the internet. One wonders if the statement from Swedish authorities, which elaborates that Assange is accused of "using his body weight to hold [a woman] down in a sexual manner" and having intercourse with a sleeping woman, among other things, will even slow them down.

OK, so maybe the charges really are for rape-rape, but still - the woman has CIA ties! I've read that on at least a dozen blogs! Keith Olbermann tweeted it and everything! That's got to be coming from a highly credible source, right?

Actually, as far as I can tell, the only source for that claim is an August Counterpunch article by Assange fanboys (seriously, they recast him as Neo of "The Matrix") Israel Shamir and Paul Bennett. Here's the most damning evidence Shamir and Bennett have compiled against Assange's accuser:

1) She's published "anti-Castro diatribes" in a Swedish-language publication that, according to an Oslo professor, Michael Seltzer (who?), is "connected with Union Liberal Cubana led by Carlos Alberto Montaner," who reportedly has CIA ties. Let me repeat that: She has been published in a journal that is connected with a group that is led by a guy with CIA ties. Says this one guy.

2) "In Cuba she interacted with the feminist anti-Castro group Las damas de blanco (the Ladies in White). This group receives US government funds and the convicted anti-communist terrorist Luis Posada Carriles is a friend and supporter." That link goes to an English translation of a Spanish article noting that at a march last spring, Posada "wander[ed] unleashed and un-vaccinated along Calle Ocho in Miami, marching alongside" - wait for it - "Gloria Estefan in support of the so-called Ladies in White." Apparently, it's "an established fact" that Posada and the Ladies also share a shady benefactor, which means he should clearly be called a "friend" of the organisation, and this is totally relevant to the rape charges against Julian Assange, because the accuser once interacted with them in some manner.

3) The accuser is a known feminist who once wrote a blog post about getting revenge on men, and "was involved in Gender Studies in Uppsala University, in charge of gender equality in the Students' Union, a junior inquisitor of sorts."

Are you kidding me? That's what we're basing the "CIA ties" meme on? An article that reads like a screenplay treatment by a college freshman who's terrified of women? Actual quote: "[T]he Matrix plays dirty and lets loose a sex bomb upon our intrepid Neo. When you can't contest the message, you smear the messenger. Sweden is tailor-made for sending a young man into a honey trap."

Look, for all I know, Assange's primary accuser does have CIA ties. Perhaps it was all a setup from the beginning. Perhaps she is lying through her teeth about the rape. Anything is possible. But in the absence of any real evidence one way or another, we're choosing to believe these guys? Or at least this guy at Firedoglake, who says he's "spent much of [his] professional life as a psychiatrist helping women (and men) who are survivors of sexual violence" - giving his post a shiny veneer of credibility, even though it's a pure regurgitation of Shamir and Bennett's - but segues from there into an indictment of the accuser's post-rape behaviour. She socialised with her attacker again! An expert like him can tell you that real victims never do that.

The fact is, we just don't know anything right now. Assange may be a rapist, or he may not. His accuser may be a spy or a liar or the heir to Valerie Solanas, or she might be a sexual assault victim who now also gets to enjoy having her name dragged through the mud, or all of the above. The charges against Assange may be retaliation for Cablegate or (cough) they may not.

Public evidence, as the Times noted, is scarce. So, it's heartening to see that in the absence of same, my fellow liberal bloggers are so eager to abandon any pretence of healthy scepticism and rush to discredit an alleged rape victim based on some tabloid articles and a feverish post by someone who is perhaps not the most trustworthy source. Well done, friends! What a fantastic show of research, critical thinking and, as always, respect for women.

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