On July 25, Wikileaks released 76,000 pages of classified documents relating to US operations in Afghanistan. This pissed off the folks at the Pentagon, claiming the release of such information put the lives of US troops and US allies in Afghanistan at risk. This hardly bothers me. I haven’t read any of the documents, but my understanding is that none of them contained any timely intel. Rather, they could apparently make certain people upset, leading to a change in behavior toward US troops and allies. Sending these folks to Afghanistan is what put them at risk.
Around the middle of last month, Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange, went to Sweden where he spoke at a seminar organised by the Social Demoratic Party. He also, apparently, filed for a permanent work Visa, probably to avoid returning to the US, where he might someday face charges for the leaks. While there, he had a fling with two different women who later found out about each other and decided they were victims. Together, they went to a police station and told their stories. They both were concerned about the possibility of having contracted an STD, and the younger one wanted to find out how or if she could force Assange to be tested. It seems that they did not intend to accuse him of rape, but according to this story at the Daily Mail:
…the police woman at the reception and two male officers, one from the sex crimes unit, believed there was enough evidence to call the female duty prosecutor, who issued the warrants.
The story was leaked to a Swedish tabloid and Assange’s high profile led to the case being taken over by a senior female prosecutor who, after reading the statements, concluded there was no evidence of rape.
She agreed to the sexual molestation charge related to the first woman, but even that was watered down last week. Some legal observers now believe that will also disappear.
That story came out August 29th.
Yesterday, CNN published this story saying that:
The rape case involving WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is being reopened, Swedish prosecutors said Wednesday.
“There is reason to believe that a crime has been committed,” read a statement from Marianne Ny, Sweden’s director of public prosecutions. “Considering information available at present, my judgment is that the classification of the crime is rape.”
If you read the Daily Mail article, the source for my above summary, this seems highly absurd. How did this happen?
Swedish authorities arrested Assange “in absentia” last month on charges of rape and molestation. The chief prosecutor later revoked the arrest warrant and dropped the rape charge. The charges came from two separate women.
The lawyer for both women appealed, asking for the rape charge to be reinstated and the molestation charge to be upgraded to include a sexual component.
For clarification, the molestation charge was comparable to a harassment charge in the US. So, these two women got a lawyer who somehow convinced prosecutors to reopen a case where there isn’t even an allegation of a crime, let alone evidence. These women were upset with Julian for fucking them and later not calling them. I really don’t think that’s a crime, not even in Sweden. Back to the Daily Mail Article:
Woman A, who works for the Christian branch of the party, was the main organiser but they had never met before.
The attractive twentysomething, described by friends as hardworking and fun-loving, offered to let him stay in her one-bedroom flat in Sodermalm, Stockholm.
She planned to visit her family on the other side of the country and would be away until the Saturday seminar.
But she returned on the Friday, anxious about the amount of work still to do for the seminar.
According to a police source: ‘They had a discussion and decided it would be OK to share the living space, then went out together for dinner.
‘When they got back they had sexual relations, but there was a problem with the condom – it had split.
‘She seemed to think that he had done this deliberately but he insisted that it was an accident.’
Whatever her views about the incident, she appeared relaxed and untroubled at the seminar the next day where Assange met Woman B, another pretty blonde, also in her 20s, but younger than Woman A.
This is all based on the police reports. Woman A is apparently the molestation “victim”, but I don’t see how.
Woman B described how, in the wake of the Afghanistan leaks, she saw Assange being interviewed on television and became instantly fascinated – some might even say obsessed.
She said she thought him ‘interesting, brave and admirable’.
Over the following two weeks she read everything she could find about him on the internet and followed news reports about his activities.
She discovered that he would be visiting Sweden to give a seminar, so she emailed the organisers to offer her help.
She registered to attend and booked the Saturday off work.
She appears to have dressed to catch his eye, in a shocking-pink cashmere jumper. But, she says, among the grey-suited journalists who filled the room, she felt uncomfortably out of place.
Undeterred, she bagged a seat in the front row and was asked to buy a computer cable for Assange.
No one bothered to thank her, she later complained.
Assange, dressed in grey jeans and a suit jacket, spoke earnestly for 90 minutes on the theme ‘The first victim of war is the truth’.
He could not have failed to notice the attractive blonde taking photographs of him.
Later, geek game:
Assange seemed pleased to have such an ardent admirer fawning over him and, she said, would look at her ‘now and then’. Eventually he took a closer interest.
She explained in her statement that he was tucking into cheese served on Swedish crispbread when she asked if he thought it was good.
Assange looked at her directly and started to feed her.
His next move was pure computer geek – he told her that he needed a charger for his laptop, and she eagerly offered to help.
Assange smiled, put his arm around her back and said: ‘Ah yes, it was you who gave me a cable.’
They went on a vain search for the charger. She bought him a travel card for the metro because he said he didn’t have any money.
At 6pm they entered a bijou cinema to watch a short film about the ocean, called Deep Sea. In the darkness Assange became amorous.
At one point they moved to the back row, where it is clear from the woman’s statement that the pair went far beyond kissing and fondling.
After the show, they wandered towards a park. He turned to her and said: ‘You are very attractive … to me.’ [Oh, how smooth!]
Assange said he had a traditional Swedish crayfish party to attend and needed a power nap, so they lay side by side on the grass and he fell asleep.
She stayed awake and woke him about 20 minutes later. When she asked if they would meet again, he replied: ‘Of course.’
What he did not tell her was that the party was being hosted by the woman he had slept with two nights before and whose bed he would probably be sleeping in that night.
By the time she had arrived home, 46 miles outside Stockholm, and charged her mobile phone, there was a message from Assange asking her to call.
He was still at the party.
The next day Woman B tried to call him but his phone was turned off. She eventually spoke to him on the Monday when he agreed to meet her in the evening and suggested they spend the night at her flat.
She wanted to go to a hotel, but he said he would like to see her home.
Again she bought his £10 train ticket because he had no cash and said he didn’t want to use his credit card in case his movement was being tracked.
He spent most of the 45-minute journey surfing the internet on his laptop, reading stories about himself and twittering or texting on his mobile phone.
‘He paid more attention to the computer than to me,’ she said bitterly.
Remember that this is all supposedly coming from the police reports. Sweden has a rape shield law, a law that protects the identity of accusers of rape. They have not been interviewed because their identities are shielded from the press. They will not even tell Assange or his lawyer who these women are, though I suspect he knows.
It was dark by the time they arrived in her suburb and the atmosphere between them had cooled.
‘The passion and attraction seemed to have disappeared,’ she said.
Most of what then followed has been blacked out in her statement, except for: ‘It felt boring and like an everyday thing.’
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.
Apparently, having sex without a condom in Sweden is rape. Doesn’t that cheapen the term to something pretty meaningless? Like when someone steals sex from a prostitute and it’s called rape?
Her only concern was about leaving him alone in her flat. ‘I didn’t feel I knew him very well,’ she explained.
They ate in an atmosphere that was tense, though she said in her statement that she tried to lighten the mood by joking about the possibility that she might be pregnant.
They parted on friendly terms and she bought his train ticket back to Stockholm. When she asked if he would call, he said: ‘Yes, I will.’
But he did not and neither did he answer her calls.
This is the real basis for the rape charge.
The drama took a bizarre and ultimately sensational turn after she called the office of Woman A, whom she had briefly met at the seminar.
The two women talked and realised to their horror and anger that they had both been victims of his charm.
The issue of unprotected sex left a fear of disease. It is believed that they both asked him to take a test for STDs and he refused.
Woman B was especially anxious about the possibility of HIV and pregnancy.
And it was in this febrile state that the women, who barely knew each other, walked into a police station and began to tell their stories.
…And the rest is history, or should be. Now, I’m looking at the same story at Gawker.com and they were saying that woman A is Anna Ardin, the political secretary and press officer of the Swedish “Brotherhood Movement.”
False rape accusations get a lot of attention in the MRA world, as far as I can tell, these women never actually accused Assange of rape. They accused him of not calling, not paying for his own train-fare, and not using a condom. These non-crimes were then twisted into a rape charge through some mental effort that I can’t quite understand. Is there a term for this?