First they came for Assange...


The fate of Julian Assange, just like that of Chelsea Manning or Edward Snowden, represents a far bigger issue than that of him as an individual, writes Mediapart’s publishing editor Edwy Plenel in this opinion article. Whatever Assange’s personal faults or mistakes, he argues, the move for his extradition to the US is about making an example of him to others because he had the audacity to challenge the powers that be with the weapon of the right to know.

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A parable written shortly after the end of the Second World War by a German Lutheran pastor (and wrongly attributed to Bertolt Brecht) underlined what is the most important ally of those who are enemies of democracy and our freedom; indifference – our indifference. It recounts how one can always find good excuses for not concerning oneself with the fate of the those who are the first targets of extremisms and authoritarian regimes.