Frank Ball, Tweed Heads
The debacle taking place in Afghanistan after 20 years of war shows that the attempt to bring ‘western type’ democracy to the country was an abject failure.
The actions of the major occupying power, America, were exposed by Julian Assange when he published the Afghan War Logs. These logs set down in detail what was happening in the country to many citizens. They exposed war crimes on an industrial scale, and corruption at the highest level.
For this Julian has been hounded, endured years of detention, culminating in spending the last two years in the UK’s worst prison – in solitary confinement. An appeal by the US against the lower court judgement to refuse extradition based on the state of his mental health is to take place in October. The failure of the Australian government to take a strong stand to get him freed is a disgrace.
He is being punished for telling the truth. Not only about Afghanistan and Iraq but numerous other areas [of alleged government misconduct]. He is looking at a 175-year sentence if extradited. This is not just about Julian, it is an attack on the right to know what our governments are doing in our name. It is about journalists being able to report issues that matter. It’s about a free and fair press. We should all be worried about the consequences of Julian Assange’s persecution. You might be next.