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Photo Reveals UK Plan: "Assange To Be Arrested Under All Circumstances" 847

Posted by timothy
from the ok-let's-call-it-the-assange-effect dept.
politkal writes with the lead from a CNN story: "A policeman in London appears to have accidentally revealed an arrest plan for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, in what UK media have branded an embarrassing slip-up by London's Metropolitan Police. Clearly legible in a zoomed-in view of the clipboard, on a sheet of paper headed 'Restricted,' are the words: 'EQ Embassy brief — Summary of current position re. Assange. Action required — Assange to be arrested under all circumstances.' It goes on to suggest possible ways in which he could exit the building, such as in a diplomatic bag or vehicle."
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Photo Reveals UK Plan: "Assange To Be Arrested Under All Circumstances"

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  • Why bother? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Kenja (541830) on Saturday August 25, 2012 @11:11PM (#41126769)
    He's stuck living in some guys office, sleeping on an air matres. And from what I hear, he's a really bad house guest. Leave him there, its punishment all around.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 25, 2012 @11:11PM (#41126775)

    Then watch the machinations.

    • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Sunday August 26, 2012 @12:51AM (#41127259)

      Diplomats are not created by the guest country, but by the host country. The guest country says "We have this person here that we wish to represent us to you," the host country then says "We accept that person as your representative and confer upon them status as a diplomat." There are various level of official ceremony that go along with this, depending on the rank of the diplomat (for example in the US an ambassador meets with the president and presents formal credentials and so on, whereas a junior lackey gets little more than an ok from the State Department).

      You don't just get to declare someone to be a diplomat at any time because you feel like it. Remember that the whole thing is a treaty between countries, not a unilateral deceleration enforced by some higher power. This is also why diplomats can be expelled by the host country. They say "This person is no longer welcome here." In the event said diplomat doesn't leave, they lose their diplomatic status and can be subject to arrest and so on.

      So no, Ecuador can't just say "Oh ya, he's a diplomat," the UK would simply say "No, sorry, we haven't recognized him as such."

      Also even if they could there'd be the problem of diplomatic fallout. Not only with the UK, but other countries as well. Many nations might decide they weren't interested in having an diplomats from a nation if that nation would decide to make criminals (Assanage is a criminal in Britain, he skipped his bail) diplomats when it suited them.

  • Solution (Score:5, Funny)

    by sixtyeight (844265) on Saturday August 25, 2012 @11:22PM (#41126835)

    Ecuadorean diplomats should now regularly ship moving crates, boxes, novelty oversized cakes and so forth out of the embassy on a daily basis.

  • how many? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by maijc (1365289) on Saturday August 25, 2012 @11:24PM (#41126849)
    how many rape victims would like that kind of police commitment to arrest their aggressors?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 25, 2012 @11:45PM (#41126953)

    Nobody "accidentally" carries a restricted document outside on the front of a clipboard. Good for those coppers. They can't publically declare their support for Wikileaks and Assange's movement to Ecuador, but it's awesome of them to be helping out where they can.

  • The good side? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by gman003 (1693318) on Sunday August 26, 2012 @12:07AM (#41127067)

    Doesn't seem to include "assassination" in the list of options.

    Sure, if you just wanted to be rid of Assange, that would be easy. Snipers. Bombs. Even just a guy with a pistol.

    Problem is, you have him killed in any way that looks deliberate, and he becomes a martyr. I would hope that anyone in power is smart enough to know that, but I've also learned that you can never underestimate just how stupid people can be.

    Now, you could try other ways. If he was just in hiding, not causing an international incident in an embassy, you could stage a "mugging gone wrong" or even just a car accident. "Problem" eliminated, but it doesn't look like you did it. If you were really good, try to make it look like it *was* deliberate, but a plan by Ecuador from the beginning to kill him for... some reason. Has to be a good reason, obviously, but it's plausible.

    But even then, he dies "fighting". It's obvious that they want to first assassinate his *character*, not the person himself. Assange the man is a nobody, a mildly egotistic anti-authoritarian who started a website almost anyone could make. The problem is Assange the concept, Assange the idea. The lone rebel trying to show the evil empires for what they really are.

    That's who they need to eliminate. They started with the rape allegations. Perhaps they simply embellished what actually happened. Perhaps they twisted what was said, what was done. Perhaps they made the whole thing up. They've blurred the charges so much that I can't even tell what he's actually charged with anymore. But they did a good job of it - Assange the Idea, at least to some, is gone, replaced with Assange the Man, a man who (at worst) is a hypocritical rapist scumbag, or (at best) a regular guy who made a few mistakes on par with public intoxication.

    Their next step, obviously, is to milk the "common criminal" idea for all it's worth. I don't think they'll even extradite him to the US to face some vague treason charge - that brings back discussion of the leaks, the rebel and the big bad empire. No, they'll try to avoid even mentioning that. They'll hit him with rape charges to make him scum (rape is often considered the worst crime, worse even than murder). They'll probably bring in charges like shoplifting to make him seem petty, small. Then when they've finished their show trial, they'll lock him away and try to shut him up. Only once he's in prison will they think of trying to kill him, again while avoiding martyrizing him (if it were an American prison, just staging a prison fight and shanking would be enough).

    • It's obvious that they want to first assassinate his *character*, not the person himself. Assange the man is a nobody, a mildly egotistic anti-authoritarian who started a website almost anyone could make. The problem is Assange the concept, Assange the idea.

      So, what you're saying is Assange is the hero the world deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So they'll hunt him. Because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian of truth, a watchful whistle blower.

      The governments are just trying to keep him from becoming Batman?

  • by hyades1 (1149581) <hyades1@hotmail.com> on Sunday August 26, 2012 @12:48AM (#41127253)

    I wonder how long the people of London would stand for it if 50 small trucks a day started pulling into the embassy garage, then pulling out again and heading for Europe. What kind of police presence would it take to search every one of them on a daily basis?

    Maybe once in a while, just for a laugh, have somebody approximating Assange's physical appearance hop in for a ride around the city.

    • by isorox (205688) on Sunday August 26, 2012 @01:11AM (#41127341) Homepage Journal

      I wonder how long the people of London would stand for it if 50 small trucks a day started pulling into the embassy garage, then pulling out again and heading for Europe. What kind of police presence would it take to search every one of them on a daily basis?

      Maybe once in a while, just for a laugh, have somebody approximating Assange's physical appearance hop in for a ride around the city.

      Embassy garage? This isn't some enormous castle, it's a ground floor flat.

  • by wonkey_monkey (2592601) on Sunday August 26, 2012 @02:43AM (#41127665) Homepage

    a spokeswoman for the Metropolitan Police told CNN "the document is not related to the Julian Assange case."

    That's cleared that up! Nothing to see, move along.

  • Missing question (Score:4, Insightful)

    by xenobyte (446878) on Sunday August 26, 2012 @06:58AM (#41128307)

    Why isn't anyone asking the question: Why is the British authorities so fixated on extraditing Assange to Sweden when he's only wanted in connection with an accusation concerning two counts of the mildest form of rape (consensual sex under false pretenses - without condom) ? - If convicted he can't even get jail time for a first time offense!

You can do this in a number of ways. IBM chose to do all of them. Why do you find that funny? -- D. Taylor, Computer Science 350

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