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The maximum security prison as at home

Last Sunday marked the second anniversary of Julian Assange’s arrest in the London Embassy asylum. While people in many places around the world demonstrated for his release, he remains in isolation in Belmarsh prison in London. Politicians who otherwise like to demand respect for human rights when it comes to China, Russia or other unwelcome states are silent about this case in their own ranks. The influence of the US on its “allies” is too great.

On Sunday there were protest events in London, Constance, Frankfurt, the USA and Assange’s native Australia. And also today and in the next few days there are vigils in many places in Germany, where you can participate.

The street commitment to Assange and press freedom seems to be growing steadily, while the established media and politicians in the haze of power are inaudible through silence.

At the end of January, for example, the Green leader Robert Habeck said in an interview that he was calling for Assange’s release. If you search the Internet for “assange habeck” now, you will find nothing new 2½ months later.

Probably the Greens are too busy to become governable and to throw overboard the principles that still exist. Unfortunately, they are not the only party that has thrown its basic pacifist stance overboard in favor of a policy that tries to play policeman in many places around the world.

This policy of rearmament is likely to go wrong and the world will become an increasingly unsafe and violent place. When people from the Middle East use violence in our Western community of values, we call them terrorists, when the German army kills people in Afghanistan, “our freedom in the Hindu Kush is defended”.

In fact, this can only be about economic interests that are superior to all human and moral doubts and are sold to us as humanitarian intervention. 68 billion euros for armaments in the federal budget can certainly earn a lot and at the same time you can secure resources with military power. It is not for nothing that the last soldiers of the USA are standing in Syria in the oil-rich east. 11 years ago, Federal President Horst Köhler resigned because he had described, but not demanded, that the Bundeswehr would probably wage wars for resources in the future, and this met with strong criticism at the time.

Nowadays, this assessment seems to be much more acceptable.

Only a few years earlier, Wikileaks and its co-founder Julian Assange had stepped in to expose this very policy of wars and interventions and the murders and other crimes associated with them. After a brief period of euphoria and support, as well as gaining profile, most of the established media that had worked with Wikileaks took a battering and kept silent about the treatment of Julian Assange or participated in the hunt for him and the destruction of his person. Wikileaks seems to be busy taking care of itself and Julian Assange right now.

Now he is sitting alone in the Belmarsh maximum security prison without the editors of SPIEGEL, The Guardian, New York Times, etc.sitting with him in the dock.

It is interesting that it is the less powerful individuals, initiatives, institutions and publications who are working for him, and it is to be hoped that the pressure of the street will continue to increase.

Here is an interesting article written by Assange’s brother Gabriel. He suspects that the appeal hearing at London’s High Court could take place as early as May. It would be nice if the rejection of his extradition was confirmed and he was then really released and he could celebrate his 50th birthday in freedom and with his family on July 3.

We humans are literally up to our necks and yet we seem to have learned nothing from our conflict-ridden history, in which wars have led to unspeakable suffering, trauma and destruction. The consequences of the Second World War are still having an effect today and yet we are conducting manoeuvres on the border of Russia and are surprised that the Russian government reacts to this with troop concentrations or only reports on the Russian armament, but not on what preceded it.

The overall situation on our battered Earth demands cooperation rather than confrontation.

I am curious to see whether a party now represented in the Bundestag will be taking part in the Bundestag election in autumn, which rejects foreign missions of the Bundeswehr, or whether the general forgetting of the horrors of war will continue.

It should be understood that the wars currently being waged around the world have the same terrible effects as the last and the next war in the middle of Europe. It is not useful to hide this and not to do everything possible to avoid it.