Let the court decide.
Eighteen months ago when Julian Assange was first charged with sexual assault charges in Sweden I wrote this:
Many “truth-to-power” Liberals are anxious to make a hero of Julian Assange. But what if our hero is indeed a rapist? Can we separate the important U.S. government lack-of-transparency disclosures provided by WikiLeaks from the felonious actions of its founder?
There are two women in Sweden who allege that they were sexually assaulted by Mr. Assange. Today, some Liberals are trying hard to establish the fact that these two women are actually the guilty parties, and that Julian Assange is the victim of their (and the right-wing conspirators’) attempt to smear him.
But, what if these women are correct? What if Julian Assange is indeed guilty of sexual assault?
Normally, Lliberals recognize the biases that exist in this country when a male celebrity is charged with sexual assault. From the sexual escapades of Kobe Bryant to Bill O’Reilly, we have always felt that it is the insensitive middle-aged male conservatives who tend to side with the male perpetrator (“She asked for it!"). Should we switch our views in regard to Assange simply because he is a Liberal?
Can we say, “Hypocrisy?”
According to the sketchy police reports that have been released to date, one of the accusers alleges that she let Assange stay in her apartment while she was away. When she returned home early, she agreed to let him stay a few days longer. That evening she was awakened to find Assange on top of her. The other accuser reported similar unsolicited advances.
Granted, there are many suspicious details coming out of the heavily redacted reports, but separating truth from fiction is precisely the reason why we have courts of law.
Months ago, when a Swedish prosecutor filed the initial charges against Assange, Swedish authorities quickly retracted the charges saying that they needed more evidence. After compiling significant sworn testimony, they re-opened the investigation. The Swedish authorities would not have done this unless they felt that they had enough evidence to take this case to trial.
At the end of the day, Julian Assange’s innocence or guilt can only be proven in a Swedish courtroom. Let's hope that this trail takes place.
With the UK court's okay of Assanges's extradition this week, it appears that his trial is close to taking place. And it should take place. Let’s let the Swedish courts decide whether Julian Assange is innocent or guilty of sexual assault.Some bloggers have been trying desperately hard to link these charges with the attempt by the U.S. government (and others) to bring Assange to trial for other charges. This is not the case. Assange will eventually be tried for his alleged personal offenses in Sweden.
He will rightfully have his day in court.