Rape and sexual assault are serious issues, but it’s impossible to take the allegations against Assange at face value, given the circumstances of the case and the attack on him by the U.S. government.After an initial investigation, a Swedish prosecutor refused to bring charges against Assange, stating publicly that he was not wanted for rape. It was only after intervention by a prominent Swedish politician that a second prosecutor, Ny, re-opened the case.
According to reports, Assange remained in Sweden for more than five weeks after the initial allegations were made against him. Repeated attempts by Assange to meet with Ny failed, his lawyers say. Ny reportedly then granted Assange permission to fly to London–but later issued the European arrest warrant.
Unfortunately, the defense of Assange against the threat of political repression has been undermined by sexist assumptions voiced by some supporters and Assange himself–from author Naomi Wolf mocking the alleged victims as “scorned women”; to other supporters questioning the two women’s motives without any real evidence; to Assange, who said in an interview with The Australian that “Sweden is the Saudi Arabia of feminism” and “I fell into a hornets’ nest of revolutionary feminism.”
These statements should be rejected outright–as should the decision by Assange’s lawyers to try to smear the Swedish legal system as excessively responsive to feminists.
Note added 4:15 a.m. 2-10. C.I. called and said, "I think you meant 'own.'" I did and have changed it to "own" and starred it [*own*] to indicate I've changed my journal.