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Assange Rape Case Reopened 529

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the some-things-never-end dept.
eldavojohn writes "Wikileaks' Julian Assange had a warrant issued for his arrest in Sweden on the charges of rape. But it was withdrawn shortly thereafter. Now the case has been reopened to investigate 'molestation charges.' On top of that, a new site (parody?) called wikileakileaks.org has been launched by the chief editor of Gawker to give Wikileaks a taste of its own medicine. You can find links to details on the molestation charges there."
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Assange Rape Case Reopened

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  • by jgtg32a (1173373) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:18AM (#33434572)
    Oh wow

    The only time you hear about molestation in the US is when it involves a minor.
  • by GreatBunzinni (642500) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:18AM (#33434574)

    Governments either are or should be open, something which, unfortunately for any of their citizens, is routinely opposed and undermined by the very same people who swore to represent their fellow citizens, uphold the law and respect democratic values. Sites such as wikileaks are here to enforce the rules of government that those who managed to find themselves in positions of power and influence actively push to quench or undermine.

    The main point is that governments must and should follow the law, which forcefully means that their actions must be free from illegalities and unethical behaviour, and their constituents must be informed of their actions and of the consequences that they bring. In short, every government, due to their nature, must be opened and failing to be so constitutes a violation of their own founding principles.

    On the other hand, private citizens do not have that responsibility. Private citizens have the right to privacy and do not have absolutely any responsibility or obligation to disclose every single piece of information regarding their lives, their business or even their relations. They are entitled to live free from tyranny and free from any oppressive influence imposed by their government and, even moreso, by fellow citizens.

    Therefore, trying to impose to private citizens the very same full disclosure principles that is expected from governments is either a perfect sign of ignorance or a poorly thought out harassment campaign based on an unexplainable demand for revenge. I don't know why that the idiot from Gawker believes the idea to persecute Assange is any reasonable or even if he decided to do that to be able to profit from the controversy. What I know is that this sort of campaign, which is nothing more than persecuting someone for his attempts to defend healthy and lawful government behaviour is not in anyone's best interests.

  • That's Great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by techsoldaten (309296) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:21AM (#33434608) Journal

    That's great. Someone comes forward with evidence of war crimes, and all anyone wants to talk about is his sexual habits.

    I was just in Denmark, a friend and I met 2 Swedish women in a bar. Contrary to the rumors, they did not have blonde hair. They were out celebrating a recent birthday, and appeared to have all the same motivations going for them as anyone from anywhere else in the world.

    Let me be the last person on Earth to attack a victim, if this 'molestation' actually happened that is just awful. But let me be the first to say, war crimes are more important. Evidence of armies going around wiping out villages is not something to ignore because there is some juicy innuendo (which may or may not be true) going on.

  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:27AM (#33434662)
    The real charge is "Pissing off the CIA."
  • by ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) <obsessivemathsfreak@nosPAm.eircom.net> on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:34AM (#33434740) Homepage Journal

    In reality, the offense is that Assange alleged seduced the women, got them to buy stuff or him, and then he refused to call them back. In America, this behavior is par for the course.

    It's par for the course when the guy buys the stuff and the woman doesn't ring back. Like most things, when you reverse the sexes it becomes an act of deviancy. Assange may as well have worn a neon dress and high heels.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:36AM (#33434758)

    Either you have no idea about what Sweden is like, or you have no idea about what North Korea is like.

  • by pnewhook (788591) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:37AM (#33434766)

    I hope you can see the difference, and I hope you'll understand why I don't think it's very funny.

    Yes, Assange-Wikileaks releases confidential information getting good people killed in the process. Gawker creates a parody site that gives back a little medicine that Wikileaks are dishing out and does no real harm.

    Basically if you expect everyone else to be open, you have to be open yourself. If Assange doesn't like that then he is a hypocrite.

  • by monoqlith (610041) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:40AM (#33434790)

    Honestly, the guy sounds like an arrogant prick from all of the WikiLeakiLeaks (should be called WikiLeaksLeaks).

    You would have to be somewhat arrogant to make an enemy of so many governments. But I think that this world-wide conspiracy to bring down Assange is more fancy than fact. The Pentagon really doesn't have to conspire to bring Assange down; he is clearly capable of doing that himself. So I'm not sure that his nomadic lifestyle and overly cautious aversion to leaving footprints is warranted. It seems like just another aspect of his narcissism, as well as a means to seduce women.

    I still think that Assange is on an important mission, and it would be sad to see that mission fail because Assange was so stupid. Bottom line, this is all so fucking amateurish it's unbelievable. Assange is going to defeat his own purpose merely by being himself.

  • Re:Next time... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:42AM (#33434814) Homepage Journal

    according to the daily mail [dailymail.co.uk] there is some confusion over whether the condom used with woman A broke intentionally or accidentally, but they claim that the police report clearly shows that the condom was worn but it failed. Then the following report about woman B from an anonymous source:

    One source close to the investigation said the woman had insisted he wear a condom, but the following morning he made love to her without one.
    This was the basis for the rape charge. But after the event she seemed unruffled enough to go out to buy food for his breakfast.
    Her only concern was about leaving him alone in her flat. 'I didn't feel I knew him very well,' she explained.

    So let's see, at night she said wear a condom, in the morning he boned her without one, but she went out and bought him breakfast and left him in her apartment even though she "didn't know him very well", so obviously she wasn't too concerned.
    It seems to me from where I am sitting that one or both of these women were coerced or at least cajoled into testifying against him on the basis of their anger for both being seduced by the same guy who wasn't as into them as they were into him. It's called jealousy, and it's sad, and at least one of these women has already realized that.
    Of course, there could be additional facts to which I am not privy...

  • by mikael_j (106439) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:43AM (#33434824)

    Wow, you really don't know much about Sweden.

    A lot of the weirdness when it comes to our current sex-crime laws come from a short period during which radical feminism was very popular, then several leading figures in the swedish radical feminist movement accidentally revealed themselves to be completely batshit crazy which brought things sort of back to normal, but just like in most other countries the laws stayed.

    As for the left and the right, if anything our right-wing "Alliance" is a mix of "baton liberals" (international definition of liberal, not the US one. They basically believe in free trade and freedom for the rich and powerful while everyone else should be kept in check by the threat of violence, drug testing and any other crypto-fascist control measure they can come up with), loud-mouthed christians (who have very little actual political clout as very few people actually vote for them) and conservatives while our "left" is basically the social democrats who are no longer particularly social democrats as they have traveled toward the center, the left (former communist) party which isn't nearly as radical as it once was and the greens.

  • by Halifax Samuels (1124719) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:49AM (#33434886)
    I just changed my mind about letting my friend borrow that $80 from me a few years ago that he already paid back. I'll be contacting the police shortly about this theft and subsequent donation.

    You don't get to just change your mind once the action in question has been completed. Then all you can do is chalk it up as a mistake. I wouldn't let someone borrow my car for the day only to call the police an hour later and report it stolen because I decided I wanted to go buy some cheese doodles at the grocery store and needed my car for it.
  • by airfoobar (1853132) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:50AM (#33434898)
    I'm sorry, but fuck that. There's a huge difference between Al Qaeda and Wikileaks -- one is blowing people up, while the other is making sure the government is transparent.

    And yes, the more people know what their governments are doing, the more likely it is they'll step up and say "stop it" when the government starts bombing hospitals. Shutting people up by keeping them ignorant is evil no matter what spin you put on it. It's plain stupid when you shrug and say "it's inevitable" -- like you did.
  • Re:Childish (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:53AM (#33434944)

    Someone should launch wikileakileakileaks.org

    By the way, the website wikileakileaks welcomes with a misquote ... not a good sign.

    Wikileakileaks will make it harder for wikileaks to publish sensitive information. When the people behind wikileaks are known, more death threats than in recent years will be successful in surpressing releases. Some other sites might come along and pick up Wikileaks agenda, but they will definitely do a worse job.

  • by Scrameustache (459504) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:54AM (#33434946) Homepage Journal

    I hope you can see the difference, and I hope you'll understand why I don't think it's very funny.

    Yes, Assange-Wikileaks releases confidential information getting good people killed in the process.

    CITATION NEEDED

    The murderers responsible for thousands of dead bodies are claiming that by exposing their acts he's the one getting people killed, and imbeciles are believing them. The pentagon said that it *could* lead to people getting killed (because they're careful word weasels) and you gladly swallowed that load, took it to the conclusion they were leading you to, and now you're making baseless claims that are getting modded up.

  • by thijsh (910751) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @08:54AM (#33434952) Journal

    It's par for the course when the guy buys the stuff and the woman doesn't ring back. Like most things, when you reverse the sexes it becomes an act of deviancy. Assange may as well have worn a neon dress and high heels.

    The sexual revolution is not over until that statement no longer holds! People always confuse feminism with the sexual revolution but that is just half the story. It's time for men and women to be completely equal in rights while keeping in mind the differences and strong points of both sexes. And to achieve that we first need to get trough the masculist revolution. Although I must admit I am not looking forward to the prospect of walking around on high heels... ;)

  • by tgd (2822) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:03AM (#33435056)

    And if you believe that, you've already bought into the Pentagon propaganda.

    I ask you one simple question... If he was such a 'douchebag' all along, why did we not hear ANY of this until he dared to challenge the US military? Why are all these little details suddenly 'leaking' now? The obvious answer is that it's all BS. But no one even questions it. It's scary how blindly people follow media.

    Perhaps because before that point no one knew or cared who he was?

    Fact of the matter is, you and the GP post know the exact same thing about the reality of the situation -- absolutely nothing. Pretending otherwise amounts to ego masturbation. You assume he's bought into the propoganda, and he assumes you're wearing a tinfoil hat.

    And you want to know the real truth? Neither of you will ever have a provable position. That's the reality of the world you're on.

  • by Americano (920576) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:05AM (#33435086)

    Has Wikileaks provided any citations or evidence of all the war crimes that they've asserted the documents they're releasing "may contain evidence of"?

    What, you mean both sides are making shit up, and people are believing the side that fits their assumptions and view of the world?!

    I'm shocked. I thought the internet was a bastion of reasonable, careful, and deliberate thought. Next you'll be telling us that MSNBC and Fox News are BIASED!

  • Re:That's Great (Score:3, Insightful)

    by PhrostyMcByte (589271) <phrosty@gmail.com> on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:09AM (#33435114) Homepage

    That's great. Someone comes forward with evidence of war crimes, and all anyone wants to talk about is his sexual habits.

    I thought that was kind of the point. Isn't it obvious that this is a smear campaign to discredit him and distract from the evidence?

  • Re:That's Great (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Shompol (1690084) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:09AM (#33435118)
    Since this is a very obvious case of political persecution, I would say that the "victims" represent those covering up acts of war crimes. So, you are wrong here.
  • Re:Coming up next (Score:5, Insightful)

    by iamhassi (659463) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:10AM (#33435122) Journal
    I love how she's the press officer for a group that invited Assange to speak at one of their events [gawker.com] and then she hooked up with him and now crying rape/molestation.

    Isn't that like going to a concert and sleeping with the lead singer and crying rape/molestation?

    In other news, she's not too bad looking, [ibf.uu.se] not the most attractive woman but after a few drinks I could see something happening.
  • by Americano (920576) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:13AM (#33435158)

    Please cite the crimes being hidden that have been revealed by this raw dump of intelligence data? I think I must have missed those news stories about how wikileaks blew the lid off the war crimes being committed, despite my careful attention to multiple news services.

  • by abigsmurf (919188) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:13AM (#33435168)
    Tell that to the named individuals in the wikileaks reports. Whether it be soldiers or informants (whose lives are now at risk).

    Also, your belief that governments and their employees should have different rights to 'private citizens' is fundamentally flawed and doesn't create a fair and equal society at all. It creates a tyranny of the majority where people pick and choose which people should have which rights.

    Don't believe me?

    OK then: Tell me exactly who should be treated as 'government' and who should be a private citizen. Give me a cast iron definition in a single sentence.

    Someone who receives money from the tax payers? Awesome, I can get info on anyone receiving state benefits.
    Someone whose income is *mostly* from the government? Those farmers on subsidies didn't need their privacy anyway! All those people working for the arts and education? They don't need their privacy!
    Only elected officials? That leaves out huge areas of the government, including all the supreme court judges.

    Then there's the fun of how much of a government employee's private life do we have the right to know about...

    You cannot draw a fair line between private citizens and government employees without picking and choosing who to apply it to (which just reeks of fairness doesn't it?) because of the simple fact that governments are in fact made up of private citizens.
  • Re:That's Great (Score:3, Insightful)

    by abigsmurf (919188) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:18AM (#33435236)
    So to sum up your argument, people should be allowed to break the law if they do important work?

    What do you think is the worst crime he should be allowed to (allegedly) commit before he gets arrested then? Shall we draw the line at rape? Murder?
  • Too fucking bad. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by FatSean (18753) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:27AM (#33435346) Homepage Journal

    I want the truth. I don't care about our "allies" in Afghanistan either. We never should have invaded and occupied the place. Stop crying like a little bitch.

  • by Raumkraut (518382) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:32AM (#33435418)

    You seem to be erroneously conflating "socialism" and "authoritarianism"

  • Re:Next time... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hedwards (940851) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:33AM (#33435426)
    Yeah, that seems kind of odd to me. Failing to use a condom for the second time isn't rape unless she withheld consent from that time. By that logic, if a woman insist on using a condom each time then after several months of a committed relationship and several STI tests they have sex without he could be brought up on rape charges. I'm sorry, but there's something very wrong here. Given the claim she's making that he broke the condom on purpose, I have to assume that there's something going on here because that's a very strange assertion to make. And probably grounds for a slander suit as well.

    Strikes me that the rape charge could be motivated by the CIA or another intelligence organization, or more likely she's using the claim as a way of protecting herself should she wind up pregnant as a result. I'm not sure about her religious beliefs, but there's a lot of Christians that believe that abortion is only OK in the case of rape or incest.
  • by timeOday (582209) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:34AM (#33435432)

    The only time you hear about molestation in the US is when it involves a minor.

    You have to be careful reading that much into a particular word when working between languages. (Translation issues are a bonanza for inciting war).

  • by crossmr (957846) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:38AM (#33435482) Journal

    Someone actually quoted the text of the swedish law on molestation in a previous story and the wording was something along the lines of "if someone does something by word or deed that offends the sexual personality, integrity or something or other" I'd have to dig it up but I remember it being ridiculous, and a strict reading of it did mean that basically anything I woman found offensive could technically be a crime. Simply say "Hey nice ass" to a woman walking down the street, or even a friend, could theoretically be a criminal offense because the text included "by word"

  • by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:39AM (#33435508)

    You know, contrary to the popular opinion in some quarters of Slashdot, there actually is a genuine national security concern with some sensitive information, and a good reason for it not to be public. I'm not saying that every time a government bleats "national security" they are justified in doing so. I'm not saying there shouldn't be stronger controls, or additional independent checks, to make sure that the privilege of hiding data from the public is only used under circumstances when it is truly justified. But revealing sources, particularly sources based in countries that do not have the political and law enforcement sensibilities that some of our home nations do, can and does get people killed. Revealing military plans and current locations/movements of valuable targets can and does get people killed. There is even a standard military term for the consequence: "target of opportunity".

    Does anyone seriously believe that Wikileaks have the resources and skills necessary to ensure that all information they publish is guaranteed not to compromise anything valuable by mistake? They published over 75,000 documents about the Afghan war, to which presumably only a very small inner circle had prior access. Did they have time to review every one of those documents, with the same skill and care of a military intelligence analyst? Did they have access to all other relevant non-public information, to make sure nothing sensitive could be deduced from what they were leaking by someone bad who already had some but not all of the picture? This is one of those situations where Wikileaks have to be lucky every time but the bad guys only have to get lucky once, and I just don't see how they can possibly vet the sort of stuff they publish properly to ensure the leaks do no harm to innocents.

    The bottom line in this debate is that Wikileaks have shown that they do not respect the law in several countries by now. They have also shown that they are not merely engaging in responsible civil disobedience, but are quite willing to leak information that outs people who could be seriously damaged (and there have definitely been serious consequences in some such cases, even if nothing has been reliably confirmed yet in the case you're talking about).

    Wikileaks are irresponsible, they do pose a clear threat to the national security of several countries in both military and civil/political terms, and they have made it very clear that they intend to continue doing so and don't much care what anyone else thinks. It genuinely amazes me that none of those countries has dealt with that threat more seriously yet (by which I do not mean summarily assassinating someone, before the testosterone brigade start reading words I didn't actually write — making Assange a martyr probably wouldn't help anyway).

  • Re:Childish (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:52AM (#33435708)

    I wondered few days ago why on earth Gawker has started such hate campaign against Julian Assange: they have several posts with titles like "Are Wikileaks Activists Finally Realizing Their Founder Is a Megalomaniac?". What is their motivation?

  • by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:52AM (#33435714)
    I'm willing to bet a large sum of money that the person who translated that report for general release to the English speaking press knew that well in advance.
  • Re:That's Great (Score:5, Insightful)

    by chrb (1083577) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @09:53AM (#33435728)

    Assange drummed up excitement, played the media really well, and then released these so-called Afghan War Diaries, to much fanfare...and it's turned out to be a fat lot of nothing.

    The of course, we have the civilian casualties, currently standing at a few hundred.

    The very Wikipedia article you link to, and your second statement above, contradict your first claim that the leak was "a fat load of nothing". Wikipedia says "revealing how coalition forces have killed hundreds of civilians in unreported incidents," and "Hundreds of civilians have been killed by coalition forces in several instances that were not previously revealed."

    The fact that hundreds of civilians have been killed by NATO troops and that this has been hidden from the public is significant.

  • Re:Childish (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Score Whore (32328) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @10:08AM (#33435958)

    Wikileaks secrecy is bad. Sunlight is good for all parties in political discourse, not just some of them. If wikileaks was entirely unbiased and published everything that came across the wire then there might be an argument to be made. But they aren't unbiased, so being subject to scrutiny is appropriate so that we can understand where they are coming from to be informed adequately so that we can properly assess what they are telling us.

  • Re:Childish (Score:4, Insightful)

    by siloko (1133863) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @10:09AM (#33435980)

    Wild guess here, but probably because someone with mod points thought it was funny.

    No surprise you're posting as AC with such ludicrous leaps of logic . . .

  • Re:Next time... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Richard_at_work (517087) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .ecirpdrahcir.> on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @10:11AM (#33436030)
    To all the conspiracy theorists out there on this - do you really think the CIA/NSA/Pentagon Special (because their mommy says so) Activities Group couldn't come up with something a little more watertight and less ... rubbish than this? Do you really think they would have any difficulty coming up with an *actual* rape victim if they were behind this? Someone who had a black eye, bruises on their wrists and arms, signs of forced entry, high emotional distress rather than a case that hinges on whether a condom was worn or not?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @10:18AM (#33436120)

    Cats don't expect you to send them half your paycheck every month when they decide to leave.

  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @10:29AM (#33436280)
    If the U.S. press spent a fraction of the energy investigating the government that they do investigating the celebrity scandals of the week, we wouldn't need sites like Wikileaks.
  • by Deus.1.01 (946808) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @10:38AM (#33436402) Journal

    Sure the circus of multi party ideologies sounds confusing but i prefer let it be confusing then to let it be radically simplified into just left/right and thus leaving out the details, so people becomes easy pickings for populist rhetoric.

    Its a blessing that the world is confusing as hell, but it wont do us no good unless people realize that.

  • by Americano (920576) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @10:52AM (#33436658)

    I think you're missing the larger point, which is this:

    1) WikiLeaks has asserted that there is evidence of war crimes in this data;
    2) They (and the rest of the crowdsourced investigative journalists who are no doubt combing through the data) have been unable to produce any evidence that supports their assertions;

    Shouldn't they be held to the same standard you're holding GP poster to? Both groups should either provide evidence, or shut up with the accusations and rhetoric until they have evidence to support their assertions.

  • Re:Coming up next (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @11:30AM (#33437258)

    Your assumptions abound. Yes, it could be like "...going to a concert and sleeping with the lead singer and crying rape/molestation?"

    It could also be like going to a concert to listen to music, getting invited back stage because you're hot, and having a lecherous musician paw and grope you when you just accepted the invite because you were excited to meet someone you previously held in high regard. You have no idea.

    You are identifying with Assange and imagining all of the things that evil people might try to do to him, then treating those imaginings as fact. I think what Assange has done is important, and that he is making enemies. I don't think that he is infallible, and I don't think it wise to presume his guilt or innocence until you know both sides of the story and try awfully hard to recognize and mitigate your own biases.

  • Re:That's Great (Score:3, Insightful)

    by c6gunner (950153) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @11:35AM (#33437348)

    Yeah, he's being smeared / discredited by a hardline feminist member of the far-left organization which invited him to speak in Sweeden in the first place. Right. Makes perfect sense.

  • by c6gunner (950153) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @11:49AM (#33437532)

    And yes, the more people know what their governments are doing, the more likely it is they'll step up and say "stop it" when the government starts bombing hospitals.

    Any person who didn't already know that civilian casualties occur in wars would have to be a drooling moron. What new information did wilikeals bring to the table? What do we know now about wars that we didn't know before Pope Assange the First graced us with his presence?

    That's right: nothing. We didn't learn a goddamn thing. All his actions did was stir up controversy, needlessly endanger lives, negatively impact ongoing operations, and, apparently, get him laid. If you could point to just one positive effect to come out of the whole mess, you might have a point. As it is, you're just pissing in the wind.

  • by JohnFluxx (413620) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @12:02PM (#33437782)

    > Seems to me the US military has done more to extend the lives of US citizens than public-funded medicine ever has or will.

    What on earth do you base this on? Medicine has been hugely beneficial. Plagues have wiped out half the population of a country in a single go. The Black Plague alone killed 100 million people.

    Even WW2 had only around 50 million deaths for all countries combined, and that was the highest death toll ever seen for a war.

  • Re:Coming up next (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @12:29PM (#33438104)

    The slashdot reaction to this reminds me of the Reiser case. Various theories went around of how he was set up; or the police and news media were hounding him with no real evidence because he was a geek; or Nina was alive and living in Russia; or the Russian mafia was behind everything; or his weird former business associate did it.

    Strangely few slashdot posters took the attitude that guilt or innocence was a question of fact that could best be determined by waiting to listening to accuser and accused make their cases, and by careful investigation. No, most were all too eager to jump the gun and proclaim that the geek was the true hero of the story, with no reference to fact or evidence.

  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @01:02PM (#33438588)

    As with most things in life, and especially most things in law, it isn't cut and dried.

    Unfortunately you are talking to a very biased audience here. For many /. types, Julian Assange is a hero. He mad the US government look bad and they don't like the US government so that makes him a great man. Now something you also discover, certainly in US culture but I suspect in most of them, is that when people decide someone is a hero, they want to over look any potential wrong doing from that person. Faults are downplayed, or claimed to be creations of those who would seek to bring down the hero.

    You see it big time in history books. Try and find a US history book that mentions any faults of any president. They were all model citizens according to that telling of their lives.

    So same thing here. Read the comments and you'll see most people are convinced this HAS to be a CIA (or US government at any rate) plot. They aren't interested in the facts of the case, or that Sweden might be its own nations with its own laws and its own reasons for an investigation. Their hero is being attacked and thus it must be for nefarious reasons. They can't accept that he could possibly do both things they approve of and things they do not.

  • Re:Childish (Score:4, Insightful)

    by eyrieowl (881195) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @01:13PM (#33438746)

    absolutely. i understand if Assange and his fellows want to stay off the grid as much as they can, try to keep their lives private. Fine. But the public organisation, Wikileaks, which seems predicated on the idea that ALL information should be public, that the public needs to know everything in order to keep everyone honest...their operations should be completely open. "We believe that transparency in government activities leads to reduced corruption, better government and stronger democracies. All governments can benefit from increased scrutiny by the world community, as well as their own people." They weaken their claim by resorting to secrecy in their own activities. If they feel that making public the operations of the organisation would impinge on their individual privacy, then I'd say that perhaps they are too personally involved and that, in the interests of better serving the public (their stated raison d'etre), they should maintain better separation between their private life and their job. The other tack, attempting to cloak their professional activities with personal privacy, is untenable. And I completely dismiss out of hand any suggestion that they're trying to protect wikileaks from hostile governments with privacy. If those hostile governments are omniscient enough to keep track of all their credit card expenditures as they travel on the rail networks, they are surely already well aware of where Wikileaks' financing comes from as well as any other details they want to know about the operations. I doubt they're truly keeping wikileaks secret from the government, only from the public.

  • by halivar (535827) <bfelgerNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @01:14PM (#33438758) Homepage

    You are forgetting the advances in medical technology and personal hygiene (that's the big one, right there) that are a direct result of warfare and the well-keeping of armies in combat.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @01:23PM (#33438912)

    international definition of liberal, not the US one. They basically believe in free trade and freedom for the rich and powerful while everyone else should be kept in check by the threat of violence, drug testing and any other crypto-fascist control measure they can come up with

    That's not the definition of liberal that I grew up with. Please don't confuse (fascism-motivated) civil control measures with liberalism: the privatization (government out-sourcing) of public order flies right in the face of the liberal idea of freedom of movement.

    Actually, I realize the problem is not the definition of "liberal" but the field to which it is applied. Almost all parties that proclaim themselves liberal are economic-liberal but socially conservative, which leads to the situation outlined above. A true social-liberal party would seek to minimize civil control and most definitely will not delegate such responsibilities to non-government agencies.

  • by radtea (464814) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @01:32PM (#33439048)

    Tell me exactly who should be treated as 'government' and who should be a private citizen. Give me a cast iron definition in a single sentence.

    One of the general principles I teach my kids is that people who think that difficulty in drawing an infinitely precise line based on a trivially simple criterion constitutes an argument are intellectually bankrupt.

    Here's my counter-challenge: give me a cast-iron definition in a single sentence that will tell me exactly, to within the width of an atom, where the ocean ends and the land begins. Can't do it, can you? You can't even get one that will be good to within a couple of meters! So I guess you have to accept that boats and cars are impossible, as they would require knowing excatly where the land ends and the water begins.

    Difficulty in defining precise boundaries is completely unrelated to the the ability to clearly identify entities that are undoubtedly on one side of the (ill-defined) line or the other, and only people who've never been to the beach can possibly believe otherwise.

  • Re:Next time... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Znork (31774) on Wednesday September 01, 2010 @03:26PM (#33440774)

    It's not a stretch to say that it's rape if a man obtains consent for sex by falsely telling her he will wear a condom.

    Rape implies the sex was non-consensual. If the sex was consensual but the risks of unprotected sex were not, that would be more appropriately regarded as assault (similar to subjecting someone to such risks in other ways, such as deliberately exposing them to various hazardous substances without their consent).

    In the same vein of legal exploration, if a male consents to sex on the condition that she's on the pill, would that mean she's guilty of rape if she's not? Or some other crime? (Assault hardly seems appropriate in that case as the STD risk would be unchanged and any later possible bodily harm would happen to her).

    Moving the bedroom even further into the courts than it is today creates a whole class of issues; when consent becomes conditional upon chains of unverifiable assumptions, rather than plain 'yes' or 'no - and get out of my house you freak' you'll end up having to have your lawyer present to protect you from possible (il)legal exposure.

  • Re:Childish (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 02, 2010 @02:15AM (#33446520)

    Clearly this is absurd and naive. If he published everything he receives, most of which is agenda orientated rubbish, the wheat would be lost in the chaff. It is practically impossible for any news or information site to publish every document relating to any issue or disclosure from every souce. Some reasonable judgement must be exercised to weed out irrelevant, unsubstantiated, and clearly fictitious material. Assange has an obligation to cull information and sources and if you prefer not to accept some level of discernment by him and his staff then no one is forcing you to read the information on his site. Furthermore, if he did not exercise some discretion his critics and those he embarrasses would use every shred of bogus material to discredit him and the solid information he releases.

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