This article was originally published by Aaron Kesel at Activist Post.
Today, people all over the world are celebrating WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange’s birthday, and Freedom Of Press with the
#Candles4Julian campaign, but one group of people — the Catalans — are also marching in a hunger strike celebrating their independence and fighting for the freedom of their own politically imprisoned comrades.
WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange has been imprisoned for months in Belmarsh prison, pending a hearing on extradition to the United States. Ironically, when Assange was holed up inside the Ecuadorian embassy, his internet was taken away for criticizing the treatment of the Catalan people and daring to tell the tale of their revolutionary referendum from Spain in 2017 when Spain responded by invoking article 155 of the constitution, which suspended Catalonia’s autonomy. Assange further stood with the elected Pro-Independence President, Carles Puigdemont, against his extradition to Madrid, tweeting that he would later have his internet privileges revoked, as Activist Post previously reported.
Assange also highlighted at the time that “in 1940, the elected president of Catalonia, Lluís Companys, was captured by the Gestapo, at the request of Spain, delivered to them and executed.”
Wikileaks editor @julianassange has been gagged and isolated by order of Ecuador's new president @Lenin Moreno. He cannot tweet, speak to the press, recieve visitors or make telephone calls. Ecuador demanded that he remove the following Tweet: https://t.co/uaDAEBKtwR
— WikiLeaks (@wikileaks) March 28, 2018
This is the same tweet that got Assange’s internet cut after Ecuador demanded he remove the tweet referencing foreign political prisoner Carles Puigdemont. Ecuador at the time claimed that Assange’s internet was cut “due to an alleged breach of an agreement to refrain from interfering in other states’ affairs.” WikiLeaks then stated in a tweet that Assange was never under a gag agreement, calling the allegations “entirely false.”
Assange highlighted the struggles of the Catalan people time and time again, including the attacks by police that referendum activists had to endure and the imprisoned Catalan prisoners who did nothing more than exercise their right to vote.
Bailey Lamon, Vice-Chair of Pirate Parties International, detailed the horror the Catalan people suffered just for voting for their independence from Spain, as well as the political prisoners imprisoned for daring to stand up for freedom.
“Voting day was met with police brutality as ballot boxes were confiscated, protesters were kettled and tear-gassed, and even elderly voters were beaten in the streets as they cast their votes. Many people were seriously injured and even arrested for exercising their right to free expression and engaging in the democratic process,” Lamon wrote.
Catalan voters drive back Spanish riot police trying to stop them voting today in the #CatalanReferendum for independence. #referendumCAT pic.twitter.com/ktF2Ec8npN
— Defend Assange Campaign (@DefendAssange) October 1, 2017
WOW. Massive crowd in #Barcelona tonight calling out loud for Spain to release Catalonia's political prisoners. #n11 #freejordis pic.twitter.com/QNKZwwhxgd
— Defend Assange Campaign (@DefendAssange) November 11, 2017
Now those same people are standing up for Assange just like he stood up for them during their October 2017 referendum.
On Sunday, an estimated 15,000 activists set out marching from Catalonia to Strasbourg (where they will meet with Pirates from Pirate Parties International) and are expected to march to Brussels in a few days. When the group arrives in Brussels they will be given a platform at the EU Parliament by Pirate Parties International Members of the European Parliament, (MEPS.)
Today, in Strasbourg, France, the Catalan activists will be given candles to participate in the Candles 4 Assange event, where they will march 15,000 strong around EU Parliament to the Gandhi statue, according to Anonymous networks within the hacktivist/activist collective.
Catalans are also demanding that Carles Puigdemont be recognized as their rightful duly elected legitimate President.
? Els catalans ja som a Estrasburg reivindicant el nostre vot i el nostre President legítim Carles Puigdemont @KRLS al cor d' Europa ✊#OmplimEstrasburg #NoSurrender #Catalunya #Catalogne #catalonia#vídeo
Via @LenaSelles33 pic.twitter.com/jL8OUS1l3i
— ElsImpliCATs ? (@ElsImpliCats) July 1, 2019
Catalans are also calling for the release by Spain of 12 democratically elected political leaders and imprisoned activists those names include – Dolors Bassa Coll, Jordi Cuixart I Navarro, Carme Forcadell Lluis, Joaquim Forn I Chiariello, Oriol Junqueras I Vies, Raül Romeva Rueda, Josep Rull I Andreu, Jordi Sànchez I Picanyol, Jordi Turull Negre, Carles Mundó i Blanch, Meritxell Borràs i Solé, and Santi Vila. (Although, three of these people, Carles Mundó i Blanch, Meritxell Borràs i Solé, and Santi Vila have been let go on bail.)
At the same time, the Candles 4 Assange event is happening globally, Courage Foundation/Defend WikiLeaks are running their own campaign for Julian Assange’s birthday, a photo collage dubbed #WeAreMillions.
Assange is facing extradition to the United States for 17 charges under the Espionage Act which were revealed. In total, Assange faces 18 charges including a charge under the CFAA for computer hacking by helping his source Chelsea Manning protect herself against being discovered, as Activist Post previously reported.
In other words, Assange is facing life in prison if he is extradited to the U.S. and found guilty in Virginia’s Kangaroo secret court — his only crime, publishing the truth.
Assange has called on WikiLeaks supporters to “save his life” in a recently published letter that was sent to journalist Gordon Dimmack.
An organized up-to-date list of known street actions can be found on Unity4J’s Pinterest account which will be kept promptly up to date by volunteers.
To truly understand the mark Julian Assange and the WikiLeaks team has made on the world, watch this heart-wrenching video of Nobel Peace Prize Winner Mairead Maguire speaking on the imprisonment of her longtime friend Julian Assange during her acceptance speech for the GUE/NGL journalism award in his honor.
Supporters are asked to donate to the numerous defenses for WikiLeaks by visiting this link or purchasing merchandise from the WikiLeaks Shop, which goes towards Assange and other WikiLeaks volunteers’ defenses and future releases.
Now more than ever: Fight back against the US war on journalism #NoExtradition #FreeAssange
Take Action: https://t.co/DtxFXP86hH
Resources: https://t.co/VXWrrxKX4E pic.twitter.com/uBoazAY4kq
— Courage Foundation (@couragefound) May 23, 2019
For up-to-date accurate information on Julian Assange’s plight, see @Wikileaks, @AssangeMrs, and @Unity4J and Assange’s lawyers Twitter accounts far too many to list, most notably the editor of Justice4Assange — @AssangeLegal. The Unity4J Twitter account will be up to date with information, live streams, and the Pinterest account will detail places where protests will be held in support of Julian Assange above and beyond his birthday.
Also, see the Candles4Assange account for further information on protests, the global movement to “stop the war on journalism.”
Happy birthday Julian Assange, cheers, from all of us fighting against your extradition and for a free press, thank you for sacrificing your freedom for our benefit.
Trump has absolutely no right to incarcerate a US citizen for exposing the truth, no less a foreigner. Fellow slaves, where is your outrage?
Assange exposed the US military for what there really are, he exposed the US government for what they really are. The US government is not happy, they want to keep the world from not seeing or hearing what crap they are doing around the world.
“… fighting for the freedom of their own politically imprisoned comrades.”
Wherever you can show no victim of tangible damages, wherever he is not being restored, it’s political imprisonment — on either side of the Atlantic.
Anyone who doesn’t see it that way is effectively a collaborator.
The world is full of corrupt, greedy, self-serving tyrants. Greed got Mr. Assange kicked out of the Ecuadorian Embassy. US bosses bought off Lenin Moreno with IMF loan guarantees ( yes, the IMF is controlled by the US) and “foreign aid” packages. The so-called aid will line Moreno and his crony’s pockets. He is a Washington stooge puppet. Moreno has even agreed to a US base on the Galapagos Islands… explicitly going against the Ecuadorian Constitution that says no foreign bases in their country. His puppet strings are easily seen.
It all comes down to greed. There is no honor among greedy tyrannical thieves. They occupy all the high level positions around the world.
From “WikiLeaks. I love WikiLeaks” to – WikiLeaks, it’s not my thing – the president has distanced himself from this situation. Sad. Do his puppet strings need to be painted day-glo orange for you to see them?
There are lots of ways gov’t is stifling and marginalizing dissent. Such as the IRS revoking the tax status of conservative organizations, or members of Congress only allowing certain individuals and groups into their meetings and rallies while back in their home districts. Now we have officials who want to arrest and imprison citizens if they say something they don’t like.
With a cursory amount of research one can find a huge number of examples. Even state and local gov’t is getting in on the act. There are lots of videos showing local councils, boards, and various official bodies prohibiting citizens to speak and even having them arrested if the citizen insists on exercising their rights. Several states have passed extra legal (un-Constitutional) measures confiscating the property of gun-owning citizens though no crime has been committed, and depriving them of due process. The examples are almost endless.
This all proves to thinking people that gov’t in general does not seek the consent to govern. Officialdom pursues their own agenda, and the agenda of the powerful and wealthy – period. Furthermore, after seeing and hearing on-line comments from many officials (both elected and non-elected) it is obvious they actually despise the citizens they supposedly represent or work for.
NO, officialdom/gov’t is not your friend, and they are not there on your behalf. They exist for themselves, and see the citizens as nothing more than captive managed resources for the state.
Gov’t and officialdom make claims they are enhancing the rights and lives of their citizens. Just a little thinking shows that is not true. For example, the state says abortion, same-sex marriage, transgender restrooms, etc. are rights. Wrong! They are only privileges granted by the state, they are not rights because they do not and cannot empower the individual against the state as real civil rights do. Secondly, civil rights are human rights endowed by our Creator, they supersede any institution’s ability to bestow upon a person because what gov’t gives gov’t can take away. Gov’t has a NO right to limit or eliminate individuals rights, doing so renders gov’t illegitimate. Meanwhile they are working hard curtailing our self-empowering rights, we do not consent to this.
In order for TPTB to get away with all this they use a variety of methods including dumbing down public education so that critical thinking is impossible, propagandizing society in believing lies (fake news), deploying “civil rights” organizations against certain groups and citizens, and creating catagories of “hate crimes”. George Washington said gov’t is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force.
John Mark civil war 2. Be fore warned , As in Russia trillions will be poured to them, it won’t be easy.
Who, are as great as these Catalans?
A little group of catalonians; I live here, I am catalonian, and the independentist are a minority stupid
One of my English Lit teachers said that, during easy times, people become morbid, because they are compensating for not seeing the death, that is part of nature and hard life.
I think, they become virtue-signally and shallow, to compensate for not doing any good deeds, in real life.
I have stood-in for communist, state services, many times this week, helping rescue animals and people, and improving carrying capacity, while also resisting one or two authoritarians.
But, if you don’t want to do gnarly things for yourself, you need the govt. Most people need the govt, or at least some kind of chieftain, seeing as how executive function is found in humans as often as in other hives.
Noone, who has climbed dangerously, or crawled, has any problem with what I have just written. It will be the virtue signallers, who dislike this. I suggest that you make yourself so useful that never need to deal with someone like me.
Happy Birthday Julian Assange!
Free Julian Assange!