Speech read by Tony, 11-Jun-2021

This is the eighty-first week that Sydney people have gathered to support Julian Assange! Julian is the Australian journalist who is held in solitary confinement in a UK prison for exposing war crimes. Officially, he is being held because the US wishes to appeal the UK court decision, made five months ago, that Julian should not be extradited to the US because there would be serious risks to his health if that occurred.

Many of us have been hoping the US appeal against the ‘no extradition’ decision will be denied, and that Julian will be released from the torturous conditions he is currently experiencing. It became apparent, this week, that there is no time limit for when a decision must be made. This week Stella Moris, Julian’s fiancé, informed us there is no deadline for the decision to grant the appeal and that this decision could come at any time which suggests Julian’s suffering may be prolonged for much longer.

We cannot permit ourselves to be influenced by propaganda, psychological operations, perception management or censorship. We cannot permit Julian Assange being locked away and undergoing psychological torture for publishing authentic public-interest information. We must unite for what we believe in! We must unite for human decency! We must unite for the freedom of Julian Assange.

In a democracy, everyone has a say. Censorship prevents everyone having a say. The censorship adds up! The lies add up! The persecution of innocent people adds up. It is clear we are moving further and further away from democracy and that we must come together to halt the departure from democracy!

As extreme propaganda takes us further from the truth, many of us are becoming fearful of freedom, even though there is much evidence to show that freedom enhances our safety, and that a lack of it makes us more vulnerable to government wrecklessness.

We need journalists to have the freedom Julian utilised when he was able to publish public-interest information through WikiLeaks. A society with greater levels of freedom allows its citizens to be able to make informed decisions and able to hold governments that engage in dangerous activities to account.

The truth is that governments and corporations have an agenda that doesn’t align with freedom or justice for any of us. It suits the powerful if we are compliant, unquestioning slaves, fearful of thinking and speaking for ourselves. Our freedom has been steadily and clearly diminishing, over the course of the twenty first century. Fortunately, there is a growing number of people who see what is happening and understand we must unite if we want a free, just and safe society.

Increasing numbers of people, knowing we must be united, is positive but we need to demonstrate this unity if we are going to achieve good outcomes. Our unity must be visible to everyone. The majority of people may be united on the need for our society to be based on things like truth, peace and justice but if this unity is hidden from public view we won’t know where we stand. We must therefore demonstrate our unity by demonstrating what we believe in, otherwise the world according to propaganda will continue to dominate us. Show your hand for Julian Assange!

Free Julian Assange!

Free Julian Assange!

Free Julian Assange!

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