Galloway: I’m looking into running for London Mayor


by Sunny Hundal    
8:40 am - June 10th 2013

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At first I thought it was a joke when I was asked if I’d heard about this, but it seems George Galloway is serious.

In an interview with the Russian channel RT TV, Galloway said, quite seriously, that he was actively considering running for Mayor of London in 2016.

The video was recorded ‘backstage’ after Galloway finished an interview with RT presenter Max Keiser.

It was uploaded Wednesday last week, 5th June. Galloway says (1m 30secs in):

I have a committee which is seriously looking at the prospect of [me] running for Mayor of London at the next election.

I’d like to fight Boris Johnson, and I think David Cameron probably wishes I’d be fighting Boris Johnson because if I’m not, Boris Johnson is back in Parliament fighting him.

And Galloway looks quite serious when he says that.

He later adds:

We will execute a regime of justice and fairness and democratic penetration [wtf?] of their [the bankers] workings, because there is no point in having an economy unless it works for the people.

It’s highly unlikely George Galloway will be up against Boris Johnson, if he was to run – there’s a consensus that the latter will look to get back into Parliament after 2016, if not earlier.

In the meantime, I’m sure the residents of Bradford will be pleased to know that their elected representative is already looking to move on.

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About the author
Sunny Hundal is editor of LC. Also: on Twitter, at Pickled Politics and Guardian CIF.
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Reader comments


1. the a&e charge nurse

If gorgeous ever abandons Bradford voters will face the exciting prospect of going back to Millibore or D-Cam – these blips, are only ever just that, blips.

Does anyone know if Labour are planning to parachute in their latest PPE clone to contest any post-galloway vacuum?
http://labour-uncut.co.uk/2013/06/05/councillor-complains-that-liverpool-mp-made-his-life-unbearable/

2. Baton Rouge

I’m not sure why anyone should find this a joke. Galloway on a radical programme challenging the TORY-LIBDEM-NEW LABOUR-BANKSTER-CORPORATE austerity on the poor lash up and the far right’s Islamaphobic back lash and attempt to divide the city along sectarian and racial lines in a mayoral election that the world takes note of would make sense.

`In the meantime, I’m sure the residents of Bradford will be pleased to know that their elected representative is already looking to move on.’

Desparately puny stuff. Galloway is doing a great job in Bradford and will continue to do so and, with him having broken the spell of the big three parties, I’m sure the people of Bradford are now capable of finding a radical politician from their own ranks to follow him.

From his platform as Mayor of London or just during his campaign I’d like to see Galloway argue for the end of the bail out of the bankrupt City, for the taking of their staff, deposits and estates into public administration there to form the basis of a new People’s Bank lending at base rate to small business and facilitating social investment in accordance with a democratic plan. This bank should have a monopoly of credit so that the private finance sector can never rob the world blind again through the creation of trillions and trillions of counterfeit claims on social wealth. He should also stand for full employment by sharing the available productive work and the minimum of a living wage for all Londoners and also an end to the misery of mass economic migration via a demand for an EU-wide living wage and full employment. I would not like to hear him supporting the Butcher Assad but instead coming out unconditionally in favour of the Arab Spring and the ending of the West’s criminal arms embargo (the only true Western intervention so far in Syria) on the Syrian rebels whilst of course maintaining his world renowned support for the Palestinian people.

For the sake of democracy he should run, there are people who will only vote for Galloway, and they deserve a chance of representation and to be engaged in the democratic process.

Personally I think he’s ego-centric, just in it for money, and not at all interested in what’s best for the UK.

4. Robin Levett

@Chris #3:

Personally I think he’s ego-centric, just in it for money, and not at all interested in what’s best for the UK.

And those are his best points…

5. Shatterface

We will execute a regime of justice and fairness and democratic penetration [wtf?]

He’s probably alluding to his views on sex with unconscious women.

Galloway one of the most despicable people in British politics – and that’s saying something.

A grubby oportunist happy to suck up to genocidal monsters overseas and the most hate-filled misoginist homophobic antisemites seen in the UK for centuries.

London would be better off with the slightly less odious Ken Livinstone.

6. Baton Rouge

Shitterface: I can tell you Galloway’s views on sex with unconscious women and by unconscious I presume you mean sleeping and not properly unconscious. It is rape unless there is a pre-understanding between the couple. What Galloway actually said was that what Assange is accused of (sex without a condom when an aversion to this has been expressed), even if true, would not be considered rape under UK law even if we consider it `bad sexual etiquette’ which he like everybody else does.

I would have to say though that if Galloway were not to come out as unconditionally in support of the Arab Spring including its Syrian manifestation against Assad the Butcher it would be a deal breaker for me. I don’t think one’s anti-imperialist credentials are endangered by demanding the imperialist West’s arms embargo against the rebels is lifted.

So much for his commitment to Bradford. I was watching Salma Yaqoob on QT last week. If Respect had more of her and less him in the party, it’d have been a meaningful party. She’s intelligent, polite and calm when she conveys her views. Not shouting down others and name calling.

Londoners were put off by Red Ken’s associations. What makes Galloway think he’d be more electable. That said, I’m no fan of Boris the populist Johnson.

On most domestic issues, George makes some very good points though. Only time will tell two things: 1. If he does put his hat into the race; and 2. If Londoners will vote for another left wing maverick.

Well if we are to entertain the possibility of Galloway in high office could we have some evidence of the kind of things he’s achieved for his previous constituents? Apart from self-promotion and radical noises?

9. Charlieman

@2. Baton Rouge: “Galloway is doing a great job in Bradford and will continue to do so…”

So let’s take a look at his website, http://www.votegeorgegalloway.com/

Constituents can email or write to Gorgeous George, but there’s no mention of turn up on the day surgeries. They can download the GallowApp (I didn’t make that up) and receive invitations to see GG speak at a protest. It’s a bit more difficult to meet him face to face.

Galloway’s website notes that he was MP for “Bethnal Green and Bow and before that Glasgow Kelvin and Glasgow Hillhead”. In other words, he’ll be gone in a couple of years. In other words, Galloway cares about Bradford as much as I care about a piece of bread: once consumed, where is the next one.

10. John Reid

Is he gonna stand down as an M.P in 2015

11. Shatterface

Shitterface: I can tell you Galloway’s views on sex with unconscious women and by unconscious I presume you mean sleeping and not properly unconscious.

I’m not sure it’s possible to be asleep and conscious – except in the film Inception.

It is rape unless there is a pre-understanding between the couple.

You can’t assume consent just because it was given previously.

What Galloway actually said was that what Assange is accused of (sex without a condom when an aversion to this has been expressed), even if true, would not be considered rape under UK law even if we consider it `bad sexual etiquette’ which he like everybody else does.

Farting in bed is bad sexual etiquette: pretending you are using a condom where consent to sex is conditional on using a condom is rape and if Galloway spent less time associating with men who regard women as sunhuman he’d recognise that fact.

As long as he rejoins Labour (he should never have been expelled) I’d be delighted to have a socialist mayor of London.

“if I’m not, Boris Johnson is back in Parliament ”

I wonder if he meant to say that his candidacy would boost Boris’ chances?

14. Barry Edwards

I haven’t forgiven Galloway for what he did to War On Want in the 1980s.

Couldn’t he be persuaded to go and live on Rockall?

15. So Much For Subtlety

7. W.E.

I was watching Salma Yaqoob on QT last week. If Respect had more of her and less him in the party, it’d have been a meaningful party. She’s intelligent, polite and calm when she conveys her views. Not shouting down others and name calling.

But she did endorse terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as call 7-7 a reprisal attack. I doubt Respect would be doing better with more of her.

Shatterface

You can’t assume consent just because it was given previously.

Although in reality everyone does. If I come home and pat my SO on the arse as I go past, I would be surprised to be charged. But if I did it to some random stranger on the Tube, I would hope I would be charged. It would be utterly absurd to say that I need to ask permission in both cases.

pretending you are using a condom where consent to sex is conditional on using a condom is rape and if Galloway spent less time associating with men who regard women as sunhuman he’d recognise that fact.

I am not sure it is rape. We would have to see a test case. I think most men have wanted to have sex, only to find there are no condoms or they are not functioning, and then have had sex anyway – with an implied, but not explicit, consent being given. The question is what does the consent consent to? If she consents to sex and then asks him to wear a condom, are these two separate events? If she specifically and clearly said sex is allowable but only if a condom is worn – which is not very likely I think – and he lied to her, perhaps there is a case for some sort of sexual assault. But I doubt it. Because as long as he has one sane juror there will always be some reasonable doubt about whether he thought consent was given or not.

I think Assange belongs at the end of a short piece of rope, but these charges are utterly bogus.

“I think Assange belongs at the end of a short piece of rope”

15.You are as bad as any terrorist

17. Colin Puddlethwaite

I believe the accusation was that she said to him that if he penetrated her whilst she was asleep to make sure he was wearing a condom. He did but he didn’t wear a condom though he says he did but that it burst or some such. Her complaint was not that she had been raped whilst `unconscious’ but that the promise to wear a condom was not adhered to. Not rape in UK law (or Swedish law) but definitely bad etiquette as Galloway says if true but we’ll never know because the Swedish police refuse to send someone over to interview Assange pursuing instead this ridiculous claim for extradition first.

What did he do to War on Want in the 80s?

18. Evan Price

I’m not a criminal lawyer … but I am a practising lawyer. As far as I can remember, in English law consent can be conditional and can be withdrawn.

As a result, in English law, if A agrees to penetrative sex on condition that a condom is used, consent is not given to sex without a condom. Unless there is a reasonable belief that consent is given, which is determined by all the circumstances of the case, including as to the steps taken by B as to whether consent is in fact given, then B is guilty of the offence of rape. So, if the condom used breaks, it may amount to sufficient reason for not charging or not convicting. But if no condom is used, then the question of whether B reasonably believed that consent had been given is one for the jury …

If B started using a condom and then decided to remove it before continuing, then a charge would be justified.

This is pretty clear – I do not think that there needs to be a test case – in most cases it is a question of fact for the jury to determine.

It is not a matter of etiquette – and, in my view, it is unpleasant to suggest otherwise.

19. Colin Puddlethwaite

Trouble is we’ll never know if there is a case to answer if the Swedish prosecutors don’t send someone over to interview Assange or give guarantees that there will be no question of onward extradition to the US. Given the circumstances it is not unreasonable that they send someone here as they have done in many cases long before proceeding with extradition claims. No wonder he was given asylum and rightly so.

I think the problem for the Swedish prosecutors is they want to get Assange to Sweden but know that if their case depends on Assange’s own testimony (and he is hardly likely to confess) then it will have to be dropped for the simple reason that it would be impossible to secure a conviction. It is not unreasonable to conclude that the true aim of the extradition proceedings is not to bring Assange to trial in Sweden but to get him to the states. Personally I would like to see Assange have the chance to clear his name if there is a case to answer but the Swedes have already said once that there wasn’t and now won’t do the right thing with their second bite at the cherry.

20. Colin Puddlethwaite

Evan: I think you are confused. A jury decides if the law has been broken not what the law is.

Not rape in UK law (or Swedish law)

Two English courts said if the conduct occurred as described it would have been rape. Are people really still arguing about this? It’s almost as if they haven’t read the judgements.

http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/Misc/2011/5.html
http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2011/2849.html

22. Baton Rouge

I’m not that interested in the fake outrage generated by a bunch of Zionist hacks over some reasonable comments made by Galloway around the Assange case. For me a true scandal is Comrade Delta and the SWP and the fact that they intend to do nothing to rectify the situation.

No, for me the only thing that would stop me from giving Galloway full-throated support in any Mayoral challenge would be if he didn’t drop his oppostition to the Syrian rebels and their legitimate struggle against a truly barbarous regime. I’m not interested in people who are intensly relaxed about mass murder or gulags or any of the other paraphenalia of tyranny simply because their world view prevents them from computing what is right and what is wrong. We should be unconditional supporters of the Arab Spring unlike the West who slapped an arms embargo on Syria almost immediately whilst Assad has been freely supplied by the Russian kleptocrats. Western imperialism has and always will be an enemy of the Arab people but the Arab people have the right to arm themselves against tyrants.

Apart from that I think he’d be just right as a candidate opposing the `austerity on the poor’ narrative of the other three candidates, demanding the opening of the City’s books and marginalising both Islamist thugs and the far right boot boys of the EDL as between them they try to turn London into a sectarian, racist shit pit. Respect I think could organise a proper defence of hard-pressed minority communities against fascist bullies whilst offering a radical alternative to war and austerity that will marginalise the Islamists at the same time as taking on the New Labour opportunists intend on starving working, disabled, young, old and sick people out of their homes and out London.

23. Barry Edwards

Colin (message 17)- George was General Secretary of War on Want for four years in the 1980s. His tenure was marked by lavish expenses and personal foreign travel. Although cleared of personal dishonesty the charity was declared insolvent after he left and had to be relaunched on a much smaller scale later.

This was covered in the media at the time including a report in the Daily Mirror and an ITV documentary.

Galloway standing for Mayor would split the left vote and hand an easy victory to the Tories. It’s bizarre that there are still those who see the vile toady to dictators as some sort of asset to the broader left or society in general. He’s always only ever stood for himself and his murderous heroes.

But Galloway in the mix would certainly be interesting in a train-wreck spectacle sense. I wonder if the foolish people of Bradford are yet waking up to the fact that they are just another notch on George’s bedpost.

25. Evan Price

“Evan: I think you are confused. A jury decides if the law has been broken not what the law is.”

No confusion here. It is for the Jury to decide the facts – the question of whether consent has in fact been given for penetrative sex is one of fact – if consent has not been given, then the jury ought to convict. The secondary question – whether B had reasonable grounds to believe that consent had been given, is also one of fact – for the Jury.

The Judge would give a direction – in accordance with guidance – as to the law.

““I think Assange belongs at the end of a short piece of rope”

15.You are as bad as any terrorist”

Coming from a delusional supporter of a man who actually hands cash over to terrorists, that rebuke will probably not carry much force.

27. Baton Rouge

Well will you look a here:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/jun/11/bnp-nick-griffin-syria-assad

Evan Price says,

`No confusion here. It is for the Jury to decide the facts – the question of whether consent has in fact been given for penetrative sex is one of fact’

You simply are not listening are you? I suspsect because the least of your concerns is the actual alleged victim. According to all sides consent was given for penetrative sex. At dispute is the question of the use of a condom.

28. Evan Price

“You simply are not listening are you? I suspsect because the least of your concerns is the actual alleged victim. According to all sides consent was given for penetrative sex. At dispute is the question of the use of a condom.”

I am sorry, but I simply do not understand where that comes from.

In my part of this discussion (see 18 above), effectively I have argued that consent to condom protected sex does not mean consent to unprotected sex. How that means that I have no or a reduced concern for the victim of an assault is not something that I understand. Please explain.

In 24 above, I was responding to the suggestion that I was confused about the role of a jury – which I don’t believe I am.

I do not understand or agree with those who assert that consent to penetrative sex means consent to penetrative sex in all circumstances. When I was studying criminal law, I remember writing an essay on when consent is withdrawn – in the act – and the effect of that withdrawal of consent on the status of the act itself. I realise that writing these things down means that they appear to be rather cold, but there needs to be both clarity and understanding if the law is to be understood and then enforced.

From my perspective, Assange should be sent to Sweden in accordance with the rulings already made by Courts here. His claim to asylum is a stretch of the rules of asylum as understood by lawyers who work in that area of the law – and so he should not have been granted asylum at all. Those who defend him on this are misguided – either deliberately or through a failure of understanding. How that makes me unsympathetic to the victims of Assange’s alleged offences is something that I simply fail to see.

According to all sides consent was given for penetrative sex. At dispute is the question of the use of a condom.

SW consented to penetrative sex while she was awake. The dispute is whether she consented to penetrative sex while asleep, or whether Assange had reasonable belief she consented to penetrative sex.

30. Baton Rouge

`The dispute is whether she consented to penetrative sex while asleep, or whether Assange had reasonable belief she consented to penetrative sex.’

No it is not because she did consent. Her complaint is regarding the condom not the fact that she was asleep.

The text of the European Arrest Warrant:On 17 August 2010, in the home of the injured party [SW] in Enkoping, Assange deliberately consummated sexual intercourse with her by improperly exploiting that she, due to sleep. was in a helpless state.
It is an aggravating circumstance that Assange. who was aware that it was the expressed wish of the injured party and a prerequisite of sexual intercourse that a condom be used. still consummated unprotected sexual intercourse with her. The sexual act was designed to violate the injured party’s sexual integrity.

http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2011/2849.html

32. Churm Rincewind

I’m rather with Chris (@3). Personally, I think that Galloway is barking mad, but I do respect his willingness to submit to the views of the electorate. What can be wrong with that?

The point is that, while making radical noises, George seems to archive very little for his constituents. He does very well for himself though. The lefty’s Nadine Dorries.

34. the a&e charge nurse

[31] Theresa May, would need to waive specialty under section 58 of the Extradition Act 2003, before Assange could be extradited from Sweden to the US, so why would the Home Secretary REFUSE to issue this assurance sought of her regarding further extradition to the US?

If the US has issued an invitation for JA to enroll at the Bradly Manning solitary confinement center then shouldn’t he have a right to know about it?

As you know the EAW does not require any scrutiny of evidence to even show if there is a prima facie case to answer in Sweden – there is hostile environment there while the sole item of forensic evidence, the torn-johnny, does not contain JA’s DNA.

I’m have sent him tanning lotion because I am worried about all the sun he has been getting while holed up at Hans Crescent
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/breaking-news/let-assange-sunbathe-ecuador-minister/story-fn3dxix6-1226662172150

a&e,

[31] Theresa May, would need to waive specialty under section 58 of the Extradition Act 2003, before Assange could be extradited from Sweden to the US, so why would the Home Secretary REFUSE to issue this assurance sought of her regarding further extradition to the US?

It seems SOP for politicians to avoid giving assurances one way or another about hypotheticals. How can she give an assurance about a request that doesn’t exist? Suppose she had given such an assurance and subsequently they wanted to extradite him for mass murder (an extreme and unlikely example to make the point).

If the US has issued an invitation for JA to enroll at the Bradly Manning solitary confinement center then shouldn’t he have a right to know about it?

If by invitation you mean a extradition request, yes JA should know about it and be able to challenge it just as he knew about and challenged the Swedish EAW. AFAIK there have been no such requests.

London would be twinned with Tehran.

37. Baton Rouge

#32 `Personally, I think that Galloway is barking mad’

Was he barking mad when he warned that Bush and Blair’s externally imposed `revolution’ on the Iraqi people i.e. invasion would end in disaster for them and us especially them. Millions marched, not for Saddam the Tyrant, but against such true madness and imperialist hubris? Where he has gone wrong is in not giving unconditional support to the Arab Spring which is a genuine revolution from within by the Arab masses against the semi-colonial brutal tyrannies they have had to endure. Galloway warned about the consequences of the illegal war and the sad thing is that 100s of thousands of Iraqis killed in the sectarian civil war unleashed by the invasion and by US troops directly could now be participating in the Iraqi leg of the Arab Spring against Saddam. Galloway should think of that otherwise it is going to look in retrospect that he is little more than an apologist for tyranny. Like the Spanish workers in the 30s fighting Franco’s fascists the Syrian masses far from being supported by the West have been comprehensively abandoned by it.

38. the a&e charge nurse

[35] SOP!! – we now have SWAT team permanently stationed in the cafe on the corner of Hans Crescent at a cost of £2.9 million and counting
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/02/15/julian-assange-ecuadorian-embassy-police-costs-_n_2696532.html

Sucking up to the yanks does not come cheap – be it the illegal invasion of Iraq, or the hounding of a whistle blower, sorry I meant alleged infringer of minor sex laws.

“SWAT”? I heard it was tanks, Apache helicopters and anti-personnel mines. And “minor sex law”? I heard he’s accused of not returning a borrowed biro.

40. the a&e charge nurse

[40] ‘I heard he’s accused of not returning a borrowed biro’ – at least that has slightly more credibility than condoms mysteriously turning up one month post coitus.

Any reports on where this key piece of DNA-free forensic evidence was stashed before being triumphantly unveiled as ‘new’ material.

Did you know ‘On 6 December 2011 the Swedish Prosecution Authority issued a statement pointing out that Sweden decided to make ALL public prosecutors “judicial authorities” for the purposes of issuing EAWs under the Framework Directive. This is not something that was anticipated by British Parliamentarians when drafting the UK Extradition Act 2003 (Hansard), who felt strongly that such warrants should only be issued by a court’.

How often a Swedish public prosecutor nominates themselves as the chief investigator in a case? The Swedish Prosecution Authority English website says: “In the case of less serious crimes, the police continue to lead the preliminary investigation.” As the strongest allegation against Mr Assange is described on the Prosecution Authority’s own website as “less serious crime”, it is not clear why Marianne Ny is involved in the case as chief investigator at this stage.
http://www.swedenversusassange.com/Action.html

£2.9 million – worthy every penny despite the current penny pinching climate.

re “judicial authority”: argument dealt with by the High Court at paras 19-54 Julian Assange and Swedish Prosecution Authority 20111 EWHC 2849 (Admin)
http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2011/2849.html

for the reasons we have given we are satisfied that the Prosecutor was a judicial authority. … [in addition] the action of the Prosecutor has been subject to independent scrutiny by judges in Sweden [Svea Court of Appeal, 24 November 2010] which as judges in another Member State we should accord due respect. We therefore dismiss this first ground of challenge.

re £2.9m: of course if you think the allegations are baseless and Assange has no case to answer you will think the £2.9m a waste of money. On the other hand a person inclined for now to go along with three English court decisions and two Swedish court decisions might consider that 0.03% of the police officers in the Met and 0.07% of its budget isn’t a high price to ensure (A) someone alleged to have committed four sexual offences has his day in court and (B) the UK doesn’t breach its treaty obligations.

“How often a Swedish public prosecutor nominates themselves as the chief investigator in a case?”

I think I would rather that person as the chief investigator of allege crimes committed in Sweden than a bunch of self-appointed experts on the internet who seem to think they already know everything about the case and can judge it online and determine whether and where a person shold stand trial.

Do you extend this free divination service to every person accused of committing a crime, or just to elite people like Mr Assange?

a&e,

How often a Swedish public prosecutor nominates themselves as the chief investigator in a case?

I don’t know, do you?

The Swedish Prosecution Authority English website says: “In the case of less serious crimes, the police continue to lead the preliminary investigation.”

In fact it says “less serious offences”.

As the strongest allegation against Mr Assange is described on the Prosecution Authority’s own website as “less serious crime”, it is not clear why Marianne Ny is involved in the case as chief investigator at this stage.

I think you’ve confused / conflated two things here: the set of “less serious offences”, and the specific allegation in Assange’s case which is about the degree of offence. Rape isn’t a “less serious crime” or offence as you’ve inadvertently suggested; there are apparently three degrees of it in Swedish law. The one Assange is alleged to have committed is punishable by up to four years in prison. I grant you that the Swedish prosecuting authority’s website isn’t particularly clear about this, especially if one is inclined to believe the Swedish prosecutor, two Swedish Courts, and three English courts are conspiring to hand Assange over to the USA.

44. the a&e charge nurse

[42] ‘Do you extend this free divination service to every person accused of committing a crime, or just to elite people like Mr Assange?’ – to begin with I had no particular views about assange one way or other, although I am pro-wiki.

I just read what was out there and formed the opinions I did against a backdrop of the US taking extremely robust measures to deal with its perceived enemies – and as the war, guitmo, and now Ed Snowden tells us, the US is so in thrall to its power elite that just about anything goes if they want it badly enough.

They were certainly able to persuade Tony to sign up to an illegal, costly, and murderous war so I imagine they would also have the means to enlist the help of neo-con sympathizers in europe to nail a serial pest like assange once a window of opportunity arose for them to do so.
One things for sure, none of this is about the 2 women, at least you should be able to recognise that much?

45. the a&e charge nurse

[41] ‘On the other hand a person inclined for now to go along with three English court decisions and two Swedish court decisions might consider that 0.03% of the police officers in the Met and 0.07% of its budget isn’t a high price to ensure (A) someone alleged to have committed four sexual offences has his day in court and (B) the UK doesn’t breach its treaty obligations’ – I know you are a fan of the present legal status quo vis a vis the instruments and processes used to get assange, and you cannot tolerate any doubt about the handling of the case by the various authorities, nor indeed the highly unusual circumstances surrounding the involvement of high powered protagonists.

Continue to cut and paste judicial rulings if you think this addresses the subtext that other commentators are rather more interested in.

I know you are a fan of the present legal status quo vis a vis the instruments and processes used to get assange

In fact I’m not a fan of EAWs.

Continue to cut and paste judicial rulings if you think this addresses the subtext that other commentators are rather more interested in.

“don’t cite judgements in response to legal arguments that don’t stand up to scrutiny.”

47. Shatterface

Was he barking mad when he warned that Bush and Blair’s externally imposed `revolution’ on the Iraqi people i.e. invasion would end in disaster for them and us especially them

Many of us made the same warning – without leaping into bed with Islamists and making a tidy profit into the bargain.

“I just read what was out there and formed the opinions I did”

So actually you are not really qualified to rule on the case after all. You may have read ‘what is out there’, but there is no reason to believe you know every bit of information that has been gathered about this case or will be used in the event of a trial.

“One things for sure, none of this is about the 2 women, at least you should be able to recognise that much?”

It may well not be. I don’t know. But the fog won’t be cleared by people such as yourself presenting yoursleves as experts competent to judge on an individual court case based on what you’ve read on the internet. Unlike you I’m not presume to know for certain one way or the other. that’s what a court and a legal system are there to determine. Otherwise we just have the ‘law’ of Chinese whispers or the lynch mob.

“…against a backdrop of the US taking extremely robust measures to deal with its perceived enemies…”

Your admitted bias (fair enough, we all have biases) ought to give you check about the safety of your premature conclusions. You’re inlcined to suspect the worst. Fine. That still doesn’t make you or anyone else on t’interweb competent to rule on whether this case should proceed, where it should be proceed etc. You just don’t know, any more than I or anyone else does. It’s laughable. I may as well declare myself an expert on the merits of a pie that came second place in a pie competition in Belgium – a pie that I’ve never actually seen or eaten, but that I’ve read about.

49. the a&e charge nurse

[46] “don’t cite judgements in response to legal arguments that don’t stand up to scrutiny.” – you just don’t get it.
The british legal system has made but one essential judgement, and that pertains to adherence to EAW requirement, nothing more, and certainly nothing about the strength of the case itself.

US hawks desperately want assange, yet neither May nor the swedes have offered any form reassurance, despite the gargantuan cost, timescale, and political embarrassment that assange only has sex allegations to defend himself against.

Mind you it is very difficult to see how justice is now possible given the absence of any forensic evidence and reliance on badly obtained, and incomplete police interviews.

50. Shatterface

No, for me the only thing that would stop me from giving Galloway full-throated support in any Mayoral challenge would be if he didn’t drop his oppostition to the Syrian rebels and their legitimate struggle against a truly barbarous regime.

If you give him full-throated support he’ll assume consent continues when you are sleeping.

51. the a&e charge nurse

[48] ‘So actually you are not really qualified to rule on the case after all’ – no, of course I’m not qualified – mind you judging by the performance of the swedes it seems like some of them aren’t qualified either.

Can I make a suggestion?
Why don’t you simply ignore my opinions – honestly they will have no bearing on what does, or doesn’t go down between neo-cons in the US and in europe.

Maybe those who feel the case is a pretext to get assange are deluded, and that we should just put our trust in the authorities, after all what can go wrong when we put our trust in the authorities?

52. John Reid

36 well said

a&e,

The british legal system has made but one essential judgement, and that pertains to adherence to EAW requirement, nothing more, and certainly nothing about the strength of the case itself.

It’s what domestic courts are supposed to do when there is an EAW – iow it’s a feature not a bug, and it’s not peculiar to Assange. You keep saying, “but they haven’t looked at the merits of the case, they haven’t looked at the merits of the case” – no, they aren’t supposed to look at the merits, that’s what the foreign court is supposed to do when/if it tries the alleged offender! And IIRC that’s something I told you</em. So what is the point in you repeatedly saying "UK courts haven't looked at the merits"? It doesn't speak to the strength of the case, it doesn't support the notion that the US has engineered the whole thing.

Who has looked at the merits of the case? Those two Swedish courts, the District Court and Svea Court of Appeal, which upheld the warrant, saying there is probable cause, which you seem to keep forgetting about.

yet neither May nor the swedes have offered any form reassurance

Because they can’t prejudge extradition requests that haven’t been made. We have been through that before, too – I pointed you toward two Swedish law academics for an authoritative word in relation to that.

BTW, £2.9m is not in the scheme of things a “garguantuan cost” – the Met spends four times that every day of the year.

54. the a&e charge nurse

[53] ‘You keep saying, “but they haven’t looked at the merits of the case’ – I have not said that, I mention it because the views of a british court add nothing, beyond EAW validation, to the merits of this case, that’s all.

Maybe your swedish experts are the final word on the possibility or otherwise of extradition – as a matter of interest are you aware of any precedent of a whistle blower triangulated between 3 countries, being wanted in one for espionage/security type offences and a sex crime in another while resident in a third?

Irmeli Krans (the policewoman and friend who interviewed the complainants) has already written on Facebook “SKANDAAAAAAAAL.”
http://justice4assange.com/extraditing-assange.html

a&e,

I mention it because the views of a british court add nothing, beyond EAW validation, to the merits of this case, that’s all.

No-one has said otherwise. So what?

Maybe your swedish experts are the final word on the possibility or otherwise of extradition

Sigh. I’m not claiming that at all, they just appear to be competent, qualified people with a reasoned argument. I’m quite happy to read alternative, reasoned views – on this particular issue (can the gov pre-empt non-existent extradition requests), I haven’t seen any supplied.

56. the a&e charge nurse

[55] ‘So what?’ – well nothing apart from the motives of key swedish protagonists being tainted.
‘The allegations against Mr Assange have NOT been brought by the women; the allegations have been levelled by the Swedish State. That was the whole point of his Supreme Court appeal. The women are as much victims of the Swedish State as Mr Assange himself is, as they went to police for advice about HIV testing and have publicly stated that he is not violent and they did not wish to file a complaint. One of the women has stated she felt “railroaded” by police and did not sign her witness statement, which was later amended by a politician acting as the women’s lawyer. After reviewing the police file, a senior Stockholm prosecutor dismissed all the allegations bar one (non-extraditable) molestation offence for further investigation, then closed the case entirely.
The case was re-opened by a politician (same one) campaigning during an election to expand Sweden’s sex crime laws and passed by him to an investigating prosecutor in another jurisdiction. That investigating prosecutor has publicly stated: “The detention time can itself be used as punishment if the offender subsequently is not convicted.”You may wish to read that sentence again. Yes, that’s right, punishment instead of conviction’.
http://www.swedenversusassange.com/Action.html

Using detention time as punishment – well that’s one victory Ny has pretty much achieved.

a&e,

[55] ‘So what?’ – well nothing apart from the motives of key swedish protagonists being tainted.

I don’t follow.

The allegations against Mr Assange have NOT been brought by the women; the allegations have been levelled by the Swedish State. That was the whole point of his Supreme Court appeal.

In fact the point of the Supreme Court appeal was that the prosecutor isn’t a ‘judicial authority’. Forgive me for citing a judgement but I don’t see how I can address this without doing so. See para 3 of Assange v The Swedish Prosecution Authority [2012] UKSC 22. http://www.bailii.org/uk/cases/UKSC/2012/22.html

58. Charlieman

@54. the a&e charge nurse links to :
http://justice4assange.com/extraditing-assange.html

The document is hosted by an Assange defence site (as shown in the site name), presenting a set of questions (eg The claim: “Sweden has no veto”) and a set of answers. But we should still have a look to determine whether the document presents a fair case.

In the first section (of twenty) entitled “What is the situation?”, we are told that Assange was held under “house arrest” in the UK. UK residents may be held in circumstances that amount to “house arrest” under the Prevention of Terrorism Act but there is no UK definition for it. Assange has not been charged for a PTA offence.

Assange was tagged with an ankle bracelet which required him to be at home between dusk and dawn. Assange was free to pop down to the corner shop for a packet of biscuits for afternoon tea. Assange was free to enjoy a lunchtime pint at the local pub. Assange was permitted to receive visitors at any time of the day.

If the pro-Assange lobby wishes to be taken seriously, it has to avoid ridiculous (and irrelevant) hyperbole in the setup for its argument.

59. Evan Price

“In the first section (of twenty) entitled “What is the situation?”, we are told that Assange was held under “house arrest” in the UK.”

And in any event, he was not held under ‘House Arrest’ he was granted bail on certain conditions – the first being the provision of funds to guarantee his attendance at court and the second being a residence condition – which is usually applied to a foreign national who is granted bail.

I appreciate that those who are critical of the actions will not appreciate the distinction – but frankly any reliance on a supporters website is absurd.

The EAW system is anachronistic and I do not and have never approved of it. I have argued against it in speeches and articles again and again – my principle objections being the failure to address the double criminality requirement and the failure to ensure that adequate safeguards are provided once a detainee is extradited by the scheme – for example, rights to bail, rights to adeqaute translation services and rights to proper legal representation.

In Assange’s case, however, he took advantage of every argument that could be raised – including attacking in court the very basis of the warrant and the reasons for it – in order to seek to overturn its effect. I believe (although I haven’t read the judgment recently, so my someone is welcome to correct my memory) that he even argued the points relating to the possible extradition to the USA. All of his arguments failed.

The problem for JA is that he is accused of a crime. That crime is not a ‘political’ crime, it is common or garden rape. His decision to run away from that, rather than face it, has cost his supporters large sums of money under the terms of the guarantees they provided for him. In addition, it is normally understood that asylum is not available for people accused of such crimes.

60. Baton Rouge

Galloway and Farage on Question Time tonight. A great opportunity for Galloway to say he believes the Syrian Rebels have the right to acquire arms and that he is an unconditional supporter of the Arab Spring. That he has no faith in imperialism to sort anything out (in Israel they set up and support a sectarian genocidal state based on ethnic cleansing and terrorism) and calls on the international labour movement to support the Syrian National Democratic Revolution. I wonder if Farage will take the Nick Griffin line of supporting Assad.

61. Baton Rouge

Me: `Was he barking mad when he warned that Bush and Blair’s externally imposed `revolution’ on the Iraqi people i.e. invasion would end in disaster for them and us especially them’

Somebody else: `Many of us made the same warning – without leaping into bed with Islamists and making a tidy profit into the bargain.’

Galloway is certainly not guilty of jumping into bed with Islamists but don’t let the facts get in the way of your deluded hatred. If anything Galloway has been to sweet on the `secular’ tyrants such as Saddam, Assad, Abbas, Gadaffi, etc. Tonight is his chance to promote the democratic aspirations of the Arab Spring in all its manifestations from Iran and Turkey on the fringes of the Arab World to Bahrain, S Arabia, Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and Syria etc.

62. Charlieman

@61. Baton Rouge: “Galloway is certainly not guilty of jumping into bed with Islamists but don’t let the facts get in the way of your deluded hatred. If anything Galloway has been to sweet on the `secular’ tyrants such as Saddam, Assad, Abbas, Gadaffi, etc. Tonight is his chance to promote the democratic aspirations of the Arab Spring in all its manifestations from Iran and Turkey on the fringes of the Arab World to Bahrain, S Arabia, Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and Syria etc.”

You set up the argument so that it is about Galloway sleeping with Islamists. Others view that Galloway will sleep with anyone who has power.

Galloway jumped into bed with Saddam, Assad, Abbas, Gadaffi, etc. Galloway shared and continues to share a pillow with UK based Islamists in Respect (sic).

One of Galloway’s beliefs is that the enemy of my enemy is a convenient friend. Convenient friends of Galloway, and he has been making them for thirty years, include oppressors and murderers. I have no reason to believe that future convenient friends will be any different.

Evan Price,

I believe (although I haven’t read the judgment recently, so my someone is welcome to correct my memory) that he even argued the points relating to the possible extradition to the USA. All of his arguments failed.

Possible extradition to the USA was touched on in the extradition hearing. It was not pursued in closing or in the appeals.

Ironically a defence witness said in evidence it could not happen. (Whether that is true or not is another matter – I just thought it was ironic.)

64. Baton Rouge

`Galloway jumped into bed with Saddam, Assad, Abbas, Gadaffi, etc. Galloway shared and continues to share a pillow with UK based Islamists in Respect (sic).’

Crap. That list of names will tell you why Galloway has no chance with the Islamists and in fact is regularly attacked by them physically during his campaigns. No as I said Galloway’s problem has been a Stalinist-style devotion to the `secular’ Arab Tyrants. I hope on Question Time tonight he will come out unequivocally and unconditionally in support of the Arab Spring and the Syrian Democratic Revolution and support the lifting of the arms embargo. We know why Hague wants to lift the embargo because the West is starting to look weak against the Russians and Chinese and he hopes to force Assad into negotiations. Imperialism is entirely self-serving and has no interest in the plight of the Syrian people. Come on George you can do it.

65. Charlieman

@64. Baton Rouge: “Crap. That list of names will tell you why Galloway has no chance with the Islamists and in fact is regularly attacked by them physically during his campaigns.”

The Respect Party is supported by the Muslim Association of Britain. The Respect Party was co-created by the Muslim Association of Britain. The Muslim Association of Britain is a UK affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood.

George has always taken himself seriously – much to our hilarity. If he became Mayor, London would become broke in a year, and would end up the laughing stock of Europe. Please George, go away somewhere quiet and grow up.

67. the a&e charge nurse

[59] ‘The EAW system is anachronistic and I do not and have never approved of it. I have argued against it in speeches and articles again and again – my principle objections being the failure to address the double criminality requirement and the failure to ensure that adequate safeguards are provided once a detainee is extradited by the scheme’, careful, you are starting to sound like assanges defence team.

I’m astonished that you think it is any way odd they ‘took advantage of every argument that could be raised’ – what else were they meant to do?

68. Evan Price

“I’m astonished that you think it is any way odd they ‘took advantage of every argument that could be raised’ – what else were they meant to do?”

Not astonishment – in my own area of practice, I have argued difficult points – but having argued those points, the result was clear. JA decided to run away rather than face the result … costing his supporters.

This is the most vile creature on the face of this planet… he came from under a stone, and needs to go back there as soon as he can… Allahu Ackbar !

We don’t “run” in the UK, we “stand”.


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