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Julian Assange: Here’s why Ecuador deserves credit for defending him

It is not surprising that Ecuador was bullied by the US. It is surprising that a small country has stood up to American pressure for so long.

We now know that Ecuador has been complicit in cutting off Julian Assange’s internet access due to pressure from John Kerry. It is not surprising that the US would bully a small, comparatively poor nation in the run up to the most vicious election in American history, one which the establishment has rigged in favour of the war monger Hillary Clinton. What is surprising is how Ecuador has done so much for the most important journalist in modern history against insurmountable odds.

I do not write the following in defence of Ecuador’s capitulation to US pressure. The cut off of Mr. Assange’s internet was an injustice by any definition, not least because the United Nations has come to his defence saying that his detention is unjust, arbitrary and that he is entitled to compensation because of the deprivation of his liberty. That being said, for over four years, Ecuador has been a shining example of how it is possible to stand up to a superpower in the name of justice and win.

When in 2012, Ecuador agreed to grant Julian Assange asylum, she did something far more daring than when Ecuador decided to default on her debt to international creditors in the name of her people, she did something far more controversial than her move to implement socialism in America’s presumptive back yard, she even did something more risky than withdrawing the lease of an Ecuadorian air base to the US military, which happened in 2009.

Whilst all of the things I’ve mentioned are moves that President Rafael Correa made against US hegemony in South America, his greatest legacy has been protecting Julian Assange against the injustice he has suffered at the tripartite hands of corrupt governments in America, Britain and Sweden.

Whilst Edward Snowden has been given asylum by a nuclear armed superpower, Assange has been given asylum by a country that could have otherwise been firmly in the sites of US ‘regime change’ and the wider world would have likely done nothing.

Yet from Venezuela to Bolivia to Uruguay, Latin America, once the global laboratory for the US to test out puppet right wing dictatorships, has steadily embraced left-wing anti-colonial governments and nowhere is this more true than in Ecuador under Correa.

Although many feared that Ecuador would cave in to US demands to surrender Assange, against the will of the United Nations, Ecuador has largely remained strong, reaffirming her commitment to protecting the liberty of Mr. Assange.

I of course am disappointed at the capitulation to the US State Department in respect of cutting off Assange’s internet, however this is an exception which proves the rule. For over four years Ecuador has been the underdog which has held firm against immense pressure.

What for a country like Russia would be simple, for Ecuador has taken a great amount of courage and stamina. It really all comes down to the leadership of Rafael Correa, a man who has not sold out his people to corporate interests nor has he sold out Assange to his would be hangmen.

The world owes President Correa a debt of gratitude for defending the liberty of a journalist who has changed the world. All supporters of Wikileaks ought to say Viva Correa. His country have done more to help defend the principles of truth and justice than many countries with far more wealth and military might. Long may it continue.

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