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December 10, 2015: The Silence
First published at Assange in Sweden.
A week Saturday it will be two months since Stefania Maurizi released the FOI documents that turned the case of Assange in Sweden on its head - or more accurately: put it out of its misery, once and for all.
Stefania's documents showed, in black on white, beyond a shadow of doubt, that Sweden's chief prosecutor Marianne Ny has been lying to Assange and his attorneys, and lying as well to both Swedish and international media.
The documents also showed that neither Marianne Ny nor Great Britain took the allegations seriously - although they took the threat of WikiLeaks seriously. Their 'cat and mouse' game, ongoing since September 2010, was meant to 'contain' Assange - to 'neutralise' him. Or even better: keep him locked away. Somewhere, anywhere.
In one of the letters, Paul Close of the Crown Prosecution Service repeated his admonition to Marianne Ny to not question Assange in Great Britain, as her case would fall apart.
This was at the same time Marianne Ny was telling TIME Magazine that questioning suspects abroad is illegal according to both Swedish and British law.
And only a few months later, Carl Bildt was telling Assange attorney Jennifer Robinson that it's also unconstitutional.
That Marianne Ny and Carl Bildt couldn't understand they'd be exposed sooner or later: it's staggering. Of course it's not illegal to question suspects abroad: EU member states have something called 'Mutual Legal Assistance' precisely for this purpose.
Yet even more incriminating: during the same time Assange was asking (over and over again, ultimately over thirty times) to be questioned, only to be ignored by Marianne Ny, the same Swedish prosecution authority questioned 44 (forty-four) other people in Great Britain, whereof 18 (eighteen) as suspects, in criminal investigations.
But Carl Bildt, Marianne Ny, and Sweden stuck to their story that questioning suspects abroad is either illegal or unconstitutional or both.
Sweden's media have never challenged this claim.
At one point, Ivan Johnson (@figaropravda) poked deeper into the matter, and got Carl Bildt's office to retract and admit their claims were not true. And yet the charade continued.
There are so many anomalies in the Assange case that people at large have long ago tired of giving Sweden any benefit of the doubt. The FOI tranche of 19 October should have ended the charade once and for all. Or so one would think.
But as with the publication of the report from the state crime lab five years earlier, which embarrassingly showed that Anna Ardin had supplied the police with fabricated evidence, Swedish media as a whole gathered their covered wagons in a circle and kept to a total blackout. The people of Sweden have still not, two months later, heard of these developments, much less had a place to discuss them.
Members of the Flashback forum have for the longest time been reporting that their journalist friends, who otherwise are eager to talk about almost anything under the sun, fall into complete silence when asked about the Assange case or why they're not allowed to write about it. They admit that it stinks to high heaven, but they dare say no more.
There's also evidence of 'Sweden the state' being able to censor their own media. When Marianne Ny first talked to TIME, several news sites in the country scooped the interview; yet one day later, they'd all either changed their articles or made them disappear.
Sweden's media have at least a responsibility to report on Stefania's FOI documents, especially as they otherwise report on the most unnecessary trivialities in the Assange case. They could have attempted to analyse the documents, even if they wanted to scorn at their relevance. For the news of these documents spread across the globe like wildfire, with several hundred articles appearing within hours, all the way from the Americas to the British Isles to Assange's own Australia.
Sweden's media could have at least been expected to comment on this tremendous development. But they chose instead to do nothing - to report nothing at all. And this, if anything, should convince even the most cynical observer that there must be something very very wrong.
Should one mainstream site - just one - break the blackout, it's game over for Marianne Ny and Sweden.
So in an attempt to get to the bottom of the matter, Assange in Sweden contacted the following people ten days after the FOI release.
- Henrik 'HAX' Alexandersson, former salaried assistant to MEP Christian Engström in Brussels. Henrik's often written about what's wrong with the Assange case, but not now.
- Stefan Wahlberg, editor-in-chief of Dagens Juridik, Sweden's leading site for judicial matters. Stefan's enjoyed a comfortable reputation, and the site's reported several times on the case.
Stefan's been been contacted several times.
- Svante Thorsell, an active attorney in Sweden who's previously been outspoken about the case.
- Anne Ramberg, general secretary of Sweden's bar association. Anne's previously been outspoken about the case as well.
One week ago, two sites representing Sweden's 'alternative media' were also contacted.
Only Svante Thorsell has replied. Svante replied the same day. Since then: nothing more.
It is great,
I will study the material with interest.
There is, in our minds, nothing at all that can explain the blackout without pointing a finger at an increasingly corrupt Sweden. There are over 150 news sites in the country, and yet there's still total silence.
The same mechanisms, once used to redact the story of Marianne Ny's fiasco with TIME, are back in play again.
l'Espresso: New FOIA Documents Shed Light on the Assange Case
l'Espresso: New FOIA Documents Shed Light on the Assange Case (PDF)