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The spirit of the holidays: loyalty.
PATRAS/KNIGHTSBRIDGE (Rixstep) — The feast is at an end, mostly. People's poor stomachs are bloated. Some people are very hungover. British television, available by satellite in our coastal location, is ripe with iconic movies of deeds of legend, with people slaughtering one another, in the true spirit of the season.
A desultory glance at years gone by yields a gem we'd never read properly before. It's not dated, but must be from early 2011. It's by Israel Shamir, published somewhere at CounterPunch, and it's about what the author calls 'PoliceLeaks'. We noted his quote of our 'Translator's Note', but were likely too busy to give it a thorough read.
And, as we're tiring of watching Trini Lopez battle Jim Brown, or whatever, we thought we'd look at this document again, and share some observations.
Credit is to be given to Israel for getting most of the facts right. The one major error is probably due to confusion about the dates, and is understandable.
Finally, a word at the end about a coming publication, detailing these past years, and adding new revelations never before shared in public.
'The British magistrate court has decided to surrender Julian Assange to the Nordic Amazons who were hunting for his head - pending appeal', Shamir begins. This is certainly before 2012, when Assange made his way to the embassy of Ecuador. 'The judge decided to honour the European Arrest Warrant issued by man-eating Swedish prosecutor Marianne Ny.'
The case, which was bizarre to begin with, at first seemed to resolve some ten minutes short of twelve hours, when hyper-sharp Stockholm prosecutor Eva Finné, out in her summer cottage for the weekend, had been contacted by Prosecutor-General Anders Perklev. Someone had lit a fire under Perklev, and he was told to 'clean up the mess but quick'. Sweden didn't seem too keen on the notoriety.
'The Swedish police papers pertaining to Assange case have surfaced on the web - and there are some shocking revelations. One revelation concerns the investigative editor of The Guardian, David Leigh, and his accomplice Nick Davies. They were given the leaked police papers well before they were made public, and Davies constructed a story that revealed his special 'unauthorised access'. Now the original documents (in Swedish) have been published on the site flashback.org, and the English version is now available on Rixstep.com with this touching foreword from the translator:
'The truth will out, the truth wins out. Let no journalist ever again speculate into what the protocols say. Six months of digging and the people at Flashback have the actual documents. The sleaze printed by rags such as the Daily Mail, Sweden's Aftonbladet and Expressen, and perhaps above all the toxic Nick Davies of The Guardian, can stand no more. Yet more: these documents are an indictment of the 'news organisations' who've printed deliberate inaccuracies all along or even worse: refused to print anything at all. Nick Davies' account of the protocols was maliciously skewed; both Aftonbladet and Expressen had copies early on and printed nothing. Bloggers had copies but arrogantly kept the information to their Smeagol selves.'
Memories of that day are still strong. Having followed Flashback closely for all those months, and having established a 'safe harbour' for forum members, we immediately saw when the post broke. It was an AOL server in the UK that uploaded the documents.
We immediately began work on the translation, and yet today have the only complete translation. (There's been another translation, only in part, and its author admitted copying our work and avoiding the more difficult passages for fear of being found out. See below.)
The entire translation took about five days.
You can't imagine how punch-drunk one gets from lack of sleep. You can't imagine what it feels like when your fingers just won't type anymore, and when you have to go back over the same sentence, over and over again, because your fingers simply won't work.
Mark Stephens (the reason J-R moved employers) advised Julian to get an 'official' translation. This would involve what is known as an 'authorised translator'. One of the requirements for being an 'authorised translator' is, as anyone in the business knows, that you are able to translate back and forth between two languages, which, as anyone in the business knows, is not going to work unless you run into someone who is truly bilingual. And all too few 'authorised translators' are truly bilingual.
The result was that Julian paid £30,000 for a translation that was worthless, worthless in the sense that it made absolutely no sense to anyone reading it. Perhaps someone versed in 'Swenglish' might have got few things out of it, but certainly no one else.
Therefore it was not surprising to hear that our translation was submitted to the Belmarsh court.
'Once again we can compare the raw data with the official story, and once again we can confirm that Leigh and his partners are brazen, busy little cooks. They cooked the Embassy Cables, as we reported in Counterpunch, and now we can see exactly how they cooked the Assange police papers too. Leigh and his supporters have loudly proclaimed that his deletions and redactions were due to British libel laws. In this story, he proves how empty was his rhetoric. Every damaging accusation against Assange was given a place of prominence; the true and disturbing picture has remained buried until now.'
The evil of Leigh and the others at that rag is hard to fully appreciate. News bunnies is what Leigh called Assange and his crew. Davies is the one tasked with combing all over Europe to find the elusive Assange and get him to work for them. But they weren't prepared to see him as a fellow journalist - see the story at this site on how Spiegel alerted Assange to their duplicity, and Assange and Stephens raided the 'bunker' when they found out. And Leigh's always been that way. Teamed with Harding, of all people, to write what was initially titled 'The Rise and Fall of WikiLeaks', he chose to deliberately reveal a complete encryption key (with salt) as the title of a chapter in his book, and thereby risk lives, real lives. He didn't give a shit. He never has. This brought about 'Cablegate2', which was a scramble to save the lives Leigh had put at risk.
'Our story begins on Friday, August 20, 2010, when the two women of our story, Anna Ardin and Sofia Wilen met in Stockholm, compared their experiences and discussed how to commemorate their weekend with Julian.'
Actually they'd spoke on the phone earlier in the week, and Donald Boström gave an excellent account of what transpired, how manipulative Anna Ardin could be, and how convincing she could be, even when lying.
'Manipulative and ambitious, Anna Ardin had decided to get some sweet revenge on our breezy, festive Julian, who had drifted like a butterfly away from her bed and over to the bed of the younger Sofia.'
Ardin was indeed desperate to get a foothold in major league politics. She'd espouse any fringe cause at all, if she thought it'd gain her votes. She even went so far as to admit that her myriad supported 'causes' were often in conflict and contradictory, but so what, she'd shrug. One of Ardin's final 'causes' was to champion beggars who suddenly had to walk an additional two city blocks to redeem empty beer cans.
'Anna's plan was to stay out of the limelight - she convinced Sofia to make out the complaint. But she did arrange for it: Anna took Sofia to see the police.'
Yes. There have been other theories, but this is the most plausible. The police station which Ardin's friend, constable Irmeli Krans, would report to was right in the train station where Sofia would arrive from Enköping. They actually met some time before 16:00, but things got underway at the time specified here.
'But Anna did not take Sofia directly to the nearest police station.'
Depends how you look at it. There are other police stations closer to Anna's address, but Irmeli's station was closest for Sofia and most reasonable on all accounts.
'No, Anna had already arranged an appointment with her good friend, policewoman Irmeli Krans.'
We don't know this. This is not documented or reported anywhere.
'Anna Ardin and Irmeli Krans were once political running mates for a city hall election - Irmeli came in at 38th place and Anna won 12th. Irmeli is a well-known gender activist, a member of the LGBT movement and the Gay Police Union. Krans's blog is full of pictures taken at gay parades from Riga, Tallinn, and Stockholm.'
Oh yeah! And the two of them even leased a venue on the island of Gotland to host regular gay parties, their venture (their nightclub) being called 'FEVER'. A quick perusal of Ardin's CV (her university years) also shows what weird stuff she's into.
It should also be pointed out that Ardin was well versed in police procedures in such matters, having worked as liaison for her university (Uppsala, infamous for many reasons). Ardin of course knew the important distinction between misdemeanours and felonies in this particular category. She knew that reporting a misdemeanour tacks one's own name on the complaint, whilst reporting a rape does not. She also knew better than to outright accuse anyone of anything - the ruse that they only wanted advice in getting someone to take a STD test: very clever. That way it'll be the police who detect a crime may have been committed, the police who will, on behalf of the state, file the actual complaint, and not Sofia, and certainly not her. Ardin put Sofia in the care of Krans, then went out on the town with her friend Kajsa for the night.
'Anna Ardin was always present in the room...'
As far as we know, this is not true. See above.
'... but her presence was never mentioned in the protocols.'
What is known is that Ardin had argued that Sofia's story and her own were remarkably similar (broken condoms).
'The interrogation was not even over before a different policewoman, as if on cue, called the prosecutor and obtained an order to arrest Julian in absentia.'
Actually that should have been prosecutor-on-duty Maria Häljebo Kjellstrand.
'The prosecutor issued the arrest warrant without having read the complaint and before Anna had made a statement or even a complaint.'
True. Kjellstrand's decision was based solely on what another policewoman had told her, the policewoman who reportedly met Sofia and Ardin at 14:00. She was to have immediately separated the two of them, talked to each separately, then reported to Kjellstrand - she used the phrase 'rörande överens' ('touchingly in agreement') about what her colleagues had said, their consensus that this was a rape case.
'... the very next morning (Saturday August 21st), the sleazy right-wing tabloid Expressen, a Swedish clone of the New York Post, had already published all of the police allegations, featuring a photo of Assange on the front page and the headline DOUBLE RAPIST.'
Oh yeah. We caught it by accident. We were never up at 05:00 AM! But this morning we were. And we just happened to see when Expressen plastered that headline on their website. Most likely at all the news stands in the country as well. Svensson's role in the thing is dubious, but he's the (by far) best paid journo in the country, has an incredible network of sources, but later admitted he overstepped himself on this one - the 'scoop' belonged to his colleague Diamant Salihu.
The question remains who tipped him off. It would have to have been someone in the police station, or someone any of them talked to.
BTW: Expressen is not 'right-wing'. Only mildly so. They're 'liberal'. And strongly Bonnier. And Bonnier hate anything related to 'piracy', like Falkvinge, who worked with Assange. Bonnier also published DDB's silly book in Germany (they own that publisher too) and even brought him on a promotional tour to Sweden. Cringe.
'That was a Pentagon threat coming true.'
Oh to be sure. Obama had already demanded his head on a platter. Of all European governments. Just pick him up. Worry about the legalities later.
'The leaked police papers reveal that Sofia was heart-broken when she learned of the charges...'
Not 'charges', but otherwise that's what the records show. Most importantly: she broke off her time with Irmeli Krans and stormed out when she heard what Kjellstrand had done.
Look: we don't know what Sofia thought she was getting into. But we can reasonably conclude Ardin knew.
'Apparently Irmeli had made plans to comfort Sofia, and voiced her intentions to her superiors; she was promptly taken off the case and her boss Mats Gehlin took over. The first thing he did was order her to fix the record of the Sofia interview.'
Gehlin was always Irmeli's boss. What's not revealed by Shamir is that Gehlin had sent Sofia's 'testimony' to the infamous Claes Borgström before the latter had a legal right to see the document, and that Borgström, in a matter well known by his collegues, 'spiced up' Sofia's words to get them to sound more inflammatory. Borgström was already baiting his one-time colleague Ny.
'Irmeli knew this was wrong...'
Of course she did. Their 'DurTvå' system didn't allow for revisions after the fact.
'... the system re-dated the protocols to August 26, a sure sign of tampering...'
'So now the original protocol does not even exist.'
Nope. But work at Flashback, which we've covered, shows more or less what words Borgström added.
'... a very busy night for a pandering political party and its pet journalists...'
There are many parties involved here. Who knows what they were really up to, but collusion seems to be a key element.
'That evening there had been a lavish crayfish party at Harpsund Slott, the Prime Minister's summer residence, a Swedish Chequers.'
It's an annual do. What's not mentioned is how Niklas Svensson got word: it was through freelance photographer Stefan Söderström who'd been sent out to take photos for Niklas. Stefan got the call - presumably from Salihu. That's what prompted Svensson to break all known traffic laws to get back to Expressen's HQ in Marieberg - he wanted in on the scoop.
Svensson had to later recant in the Swedish media site Resumé where he admitted he'd overstepped quite a lot.
'That night Svensson received a message on his cell phone...'
No, it was photographer Söderström who got it. As explained above.
'We don't know whether or not he shared the good news with the ministers and Ambassadors at the party, but I don't see how he could have contained himself.'
That may have been impossible: Svensson was in a hurry to get back into town before someone else published and got exclusive credit.
'... the government was eager to placate the Americans, upset at Julian's new Swedish base of operations.'
Julian got colocation with Bahnhof, courtesy of Rick Falkvinge, in Pionen, a former nuclear bunker under the 'White Mountains' on the Stockholm city island of Södermalm.
'Svensson called the police and the prosecutor, and they confirmed the news as an official press release from the police department.'
That would have been Salihu, some time earlier. It would have had to have been, as otherwise Salihu wouldn't have contacted Söderström. The whole idea was they (Expressen) wanted to be on hand, with the police, when the police found Julian Assange and took him away in handcuffs - that was the wet dream for their big story.
And yes, Svensson and his boss Thomas Mattsson later admitted it to be the biggest scoop in their history - and that's probably why they didn't worry much about the ethics of blasting 'Assange' all across the front page, something 'verboten' in Sweden where one is expected to practice what they call 'god publicistisk sed'.
'Anna said that she freely consented to have sex with Assange, but that she wouldn't have let it happen if she'd known he didn't have a condom.'
Not that it matters, but this is blatantly incorrect. Anna told the police something about condoms the night before. Assange and his attorney Leif Silbersky discussed this openly in the former's interrogation with the police 30 August. And so forth. Anna reached for a condom after she'd invited Assange to her bed. She actually accused him of intentionally breaking the condom. (Although how that's done isn't revealed.) She later deliberately doctored a new condom to make it look like the old one (which she'd told the police she still had a week after the fact) forgetting they might, just might, do a DNA test on it and would then come up with nothing.
And Ardin was never part of any 'rape charge'. (And there was never a 'charge' either.) Ardin's part was classified as a misdemeanour - which must have given Ardin vertigo. Why? Because her name would then be on the complaint. It wouldn't be 'the state versus'. If you want to change your testimony (prior to a trial) where you're only a witness (Sofia's case) then that's OK. But when your name's on the complaint, as in Ardin's case, and you're caught lying... That's another matter altogether. And it's punishable. Yes, it's a felony. Ardin was looking at (fearing) serious prison time (years). No wonder she contacted Borgström! And yes, she must have been in quite the panic, as Finné had already closed the part relating to Sofia. And no, she didn't know another prosecutor could 'pull rank' and reopen a closed preliminary investigation - Borgstöm told the media it was his idea to contact Ny, 'the girls didn't know such a thing was possible'.
'But the closed case was soon to be reopened. Pro-American right-wing forces in Sweden wanted to do as much damage to Julian as possible.'
Most Swedish career diplomats are educated in the US.
'Reinfeldt would like to be considered 'the Ronald Reagan of Sweden'; he has tried for years to dismantle Swedish socialism and bring them into NATO.'
Reinfeldt and his friends Anders Borg and Ulf Kristersson in their party's youth league concocted a plan to destroy their rivals, the Social Democrats. They'd do this by crippling the country's world-famous welfare system, an achievement of the Social Democrats. And they'd do this by opening the borders and flooding the country with (mostly unemployable) immigrants. They started this back in 2010-2011. Brian Palmer, a professor from Harvard who's also taught extensively in Sweden, has published an excellent book on the subject.
'Borgström spoke to his old comrade Marianne Ny, and together they prepared new laws that stretched the definition of rape so far that 'if a woman doesn't have multiple orgasms during hetero sex, the man can be charged with rape', in the witty words of a sister feminist.'
Pretty much. Gudrun Schyman's party 'Feminist Initiative' told the women of Sweden that 'having sex with your husbands is an act of treason', that all hetero sex is rape, and so forth, and so forth. Borgström liked working with these people because there was good money in it.
'... to take feminism to the next level (a la Valerie Solanas)...'
That attitude has been very prevalent. Swedes are not even allowed to import good therapeutic methods for domestic violence that are proven to be successful because those methods assume everyone in such a situation is responsible, but Swedish feminists (in the 'Solanas' school) say 'all men are animals', 'to call a man an animal is to give him a compliment', and all blame for domestic turmoil is always the fault of the man, never the woman. This is seen in Evin Rubar's excellent documentary 'The Gender War'. (Yes it's mega-sick.)
'It was only much later, when he was in the UK, that Marianne Ny decided to demand his extradition. This was a smart move.'
Smart and devious. Assange asked and got permission to leave the country. He was not under arrest. This was a courtesy call only. But he was indeed given permission.
Sometime between his departure from his temporary living quarters in Sweden and his arrival at Stockholm's international Arlanda airport, Marianne Ny issued an arrest warrant.
This warrant was never made public. It could have been used to prevent Assange from leaving the country. (He had three separate security services trailing his every move, so they surely knew where he was, and their info was surely the reason for the timing of Ny's warrant.)
Ny thereafter promised Assange 'all would be well' when he returned (he was scheduled to attend Afghanistan Week in Stockholm and speak at one of their events in town and march together with the Grandma of Swedish Feminism Maria-Pia Boëthius) but then Ny blew it - of course she wasn't being honest, she planned to ambush Assange and have him taken away by the police - which of course meant he'd be entitled to legal counsel, which meant she had to contact Assange's then-lawyer Björn Hurtig. It isn't known if it was Hurtig who tipped Assange off before he boarded his flight back to Sweden, but, once Assange changed lawyers to Samuelson and Olsson, Hurtig's invoice came before the Stockholm District Court and suddenly all was revealed - he debited for the late-night hours when Ny wanted him on hand for the arrest of Assange.
'Our hero has found himself in quite a mess.'
Uh yeah. But do see the original. And see the final section 'Anna Ardin Follow Up'.
Come back often for news of our coming book Loyalty, covering the nine years we grappled with 'Assange in Sweden' at Ground Zero. No holds barred: the book tells all, every last uncomfortable detail. Stay tuned.
Israel Shamir: PoliceLeaks
The Police Protocol (Translated)
Rixstep: JA/WL (Assange/WikiLeaks)
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