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London Protests Outside Prison Where Julian Assange Is Being Held (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 143.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris present interview and video footage courtesy of Dr. Catherine Brown, who attended a protest outside the prison where Julian Assange is currently being held in London.

The event was attended by Patrick Henningsen (https://21stcenturywire.com), Lee Stranahan (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCz_DqJvYXMfmc9gSNhbqkrQ) and George Galloway (https://georgegalloway.com/on/).

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Authored by Caitlin Johnstone via Medium.com:


At a time when everyone should be out in the streets shaking the earth and protesting the Trump administration’s prosecution of Julian Assange for exposing US war crimes, those who continue to support this president have one message and one message only when it comes to the WikiLeaks founder: Don’t do anything. Relax, wait and see, trust Trump, and don’t do anything. Trump is about to save Assange, and save us all. Do nothing.


Who do you guys think this strategy benefits, exactly?

These are all people who say they support Assange and WikiLeaks, who say they support free speech and oppose the deep state, and yet what they are doing today hurts Assange and helps the unelected power establishment known as the deep state just as much as the hysterical Russiavape dupes who are overtly smearing Assange today.

To be clear, not everyone who voted for Trump is doing this; many are aggressively opposing this administration’s prosecution of Assange and vocally withdrawing all support for him. But the ones who are engaged in the behavior I’m describing are all helping to kill the loud and aggressive opposition to Assange’s imprisonment which is so desperately needed right now, and they’re helping everyone they claim to oppose. The pussyhat-wearing Assange haters and the MAGA hat-wearing Assange lovers are on the same side on this issue, mindlessly working toward the exact same agenda: the permanent imprisonment of a truth-telling journalist.

Every time President Trump advances a longstanding evil agenda of America’s permanent government, I see my social media notifications swarmed with Trump supporters telling me that it is actually a good thing, because it’s secretly a brilliant strategic chess move that the 45th president is taking against the deep state.

When I say that this happens every time, I’m not being hyperbolic to make a point. I mean it happens every single time, without a single, solitary exception, always. It happens with such clockwork reliability that I preemptively addressed it in the article I wrote when Julian Assange was arrested, saying, “I am going to have a zero tolerance policy for QAnon cultists who try to tell me that this is actually 5-D chess by Trump to overthrow the Deep State. Stay out of my comments, stay out of my social media notifications, stay the hell away from me, and please rethink your worldview.”

I said this because I knew it was coming, and indeed it did. All sorts of theories have been concocted since Assange’s arrest which people cite as proof that Trump is actually protecting Assange with his administration’s indictment and extradition request, instead of working to imprison a journalist for exposing US war crimes, which is actually what’s happening.

They tell me that Trump is bringing Assange to America for trial because he can only pardon him after he’s been convicted. This is false. A US president can pardon anyone at any time of any crime against the United States, without their having been convicted and without their even having been charged. After leaving office Richard Nixon was issued a full presidential pardon by Gerald Ford for “all offenses against the United States which he, Richard Nixon, has committed or may have committed or taken part in during the period from January 20, 1969 through August 9,1974.” Nixon had never been charged with anything. If Trump were going to pardon Assange he could have done it at any time since taking office, instead of issuing a warrant for his arrest in December 2017 and executing it on Thursday after a series of international legal manipulations. A pardon is not in the plans.

Another common belief I keep encountering is that Trump is bringing Assange to America to get him to testify about his source for the 2016 Democratic Party emails in exchange for a pardon, thereby revealing the truth about Russiagate’s origins and bringing down Clinton and Obama. This is false. Everyone who knows anything about Assange (including the Trump administration) knows that he will never, ever reveal a source under any circumstances whatsoever. It would be a cardinal journalistic sin, a violation of every promise WikiLeaks has ever made, and a betrayal of his entire life’s work. More importantly, imprisoning a journalist and threatening him with a heavy sentence to coerce him into giving up information against his will is evil. If you believe your president is doing that, the last thing you should be doing is cheering for him.

But that isn’t what Trump is doing. Trump is pursuing the imprisonment of a journalist for exposing US war crimes, so that he can scare off future leak publishers and set a legal precedent for their prosecution.

I’ve been engaging people in debates on this subject online so I can understand their arguments well enough to address them, and what I’ve learned is that they don’t really have any. Those who believe Trump is actually secretly helping Assange and helping the American people by prosecuting a journalist have no basis for their belief other than pure faith that Trump is good, therefore anything he does must be good. It’s the exact mirror image of Russiagate hysterics, and it benefits the exact same corrupt establishment.

The mental contortions that people are doing to avoid the cognitive dissonance between their support for Assange and their support for Trump is truly something to behold. For the last 24 hours QAnon adherents have been telling me that Assange holding a Gore Vidal book when arrested is an undeniable signal that he’s in coordination with the Trump campaign to bring down the Deep State, and that I’m crazy for being unable to see that. Turns out it was actually a book that Assange wanted to read while he was waiting to be processed at the courthouse, which makes sense since Vidal’s “History of the National Security State” covers a subject that Assange has devoted his entire life to.

QAnon is such a brilliant propaganda construct. With some cryptic posts on an anonymous message board, whoever is behind that psyop has succeeded in manipulating a vocal and impassioned sector of Trump’s base into applauding every single step he’s taken in advancing the dystopian agendas of his predecessors as a brilliant 4-D chess move against the establishment. I’ve been told that his bombing of Syria actually took out an Iranian nuclear base, that he’s helping to free the Venezuelan people without harming anyone, that he’s fighting the deep state in Iran, that his dangerous escalations against Russia are just a show because he and Putin are working together (a comical overlap with the Russiagate crowd), and last year they were telling me that Assange isn’t in the embassy at all because Trump had already covertly rescued and pardoned him. There are people who honestly believe that there is a revolution against the establishment underway which is being led by a plucky alliance between the President of the United States, the Prime Minister of Israel, and the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. It’s that bad.

QAnon followers make up a minority of Trump’s base, but the insanity of the QAnon psyop bleeds into the greater MAGA crowd and helps normalize the kind of thinking which leads people to conclude that a blatant prosecution of a journalist for telling the truth about the US political construct is actually a strategic maneuver against the establishment. The enthusiastic promotion of this narrative has an undeniable and pernicious chilling effect on opposition to Assange’s wrongful imprisonment, which should be an issue upon which the right and the true left agree.

I’ve never pushed away Trump supporters because I believe isolating into ideological echo chambers makes the left impotent and stupid, and many of them have followed me since I started this gig because they agree with some of what I’ve got to say. I don’t know how many MAGA people I still have in my readership after all the stuff I’ve been writing about their president, but those of you who are still out there, please, for the love of God help get this idea out there. This is a time where everyone who supports WikiLeaks should be flooring the gas pedal, and all the “Don’t do anything, trust the plan, wait and see” rhetoric is keeping one foot on the brakes.

Assange should have been pardoned already, long ago, if not by Obama then by Trump. There is no excuse whatsoever for this not to have happened already, let alone for Assange to be behind bars at the behest of this administration. Stop saying “wait and see”. We’ve already seen. The time to protest is now. Get your foot off the brakes, and aggressively demand that your president cease doing what he is doing. Make this an election issue. Trump can’t afford to lose his base, but if you keep saying “wait and see” the narrative manipulators will keep moving back the line you’d sworn you’ll never let him cross until before you know it you’ve got another four years of another Bushbama while Assange remains locked in a cage.

Don’t let them do this to you. Use your power now.


Everyone has my unconditional permission to republish or use any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge. My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, throwing some money into my hat on Patreon or Paypalpurchasing some of my sweet merchandise, buying my new book Rogue Nation: Psychonautical Adventures With Caitlin Johnstone, or my previous book Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers. The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for my website, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here.

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Patricia OrmsbyKarl PomeroyFlying GabrielNorah Dean Recent comment authors
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Norah Dean
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Norah Dean

If Assange is extradited anywhere he will end up in a Cell in the US for 30 plus years where he will be somebody’s bitch every night. The gutless UK government will meekly obey the Empire and ship him to Sweden or the US very soon. It’s all bad news for all Internet based journalists who will all go the same way if they dare to criticize the Empire’s activities.

Flying Gabriel
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Flying Gabriel

So – do you think not enough people read Caitlin Johnstone’s garbage yesterday? Are you going to publish the same diatribe under another heading tomorrow? How many times? The Duran’s starting to look remarkably like just another propaganda channel.

Karl Pomeroy
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Well said Gabriel!

Karl Pomeroy
Guest

Hello Caitlin Johnstone, This is certainly an interesting article. At risk to myself, given that you are anti-Trump and that The Duran is sometimes hostile to my comments, I must, for the sake of truth, point out arguments for Trump that you have missed. I deplore Assange’s arrest and persecution. I have also read carefully your many criticisms of Trump supporters, and you have covered the topic with the thoroughness of a logician. That is commendable. But your sincere efforts also bring to light that no matter how hard we journalists (if I can be called one) try to be… Read more »

Patricia Ormsby
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Patricia Ormsby

I think the McLeft’s fixation on Trump and unceasing attacks on him and his supporters drive some of his supporters to continue sticking up for him despite real disappointments and seek some momentary comfort in what Q is saying, despite not really believing it. Still, I agree they ought to be putting pressure on Trump while telling the McLeft to stuff it.

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Peace on Korean Peninsula within reach, if only Trump can remove Pompeo & Bolton (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 152.

Alex Christoforou

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RT CrossTalk host Peter Lavelle and The Duran’s Alex Christoforou discuss the results of the Putin-Kim summit in Vladivostok, Russia, aimed at boosting bilateral ties between the two neighboring countries, as well as working to contribute to a final peace settlement on the Korean peninsula.

Putin’s meeting with Kim may prove to be a pivotal diplomatic moment, as North Korea continues to work towards normalizing ties with the U.S. amidst ongoing denuclearization talks with the Trump White House.

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Via the BBC…

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un needs international security guarantees if he is to end his nuclear programme.

Such guarantees would need to be offered within a multinational framework, he added, following talks near Vladivostok in Russia’s far east.

Mr Kim praised the summit as a “very meaningful one-on-one exchange”.

Mr Putin said North Korea’s leader was “fairly open” and had “talked freely on all issues that were on the agenda”.

The meeting followed the breakdown of talks between the US and North Korea in February, when Mr Kim met US President Donald Trump in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi.

Those talks reportedly stalled over North Korea’s demand for full economic sanctions relief in return for some denuclearisation commitments – a deal the US was not willing to make.

Speaking after the talks on Thursday, Mr Putin said he wanted to see full denuclearisation on the Korean peninsula.

But he said this could only be achieved through respect for international law.

“We need to restore the power of international law, to return to a state where international law, not the law of the strongest, determines the situation in the world,” he said.

Mr Kim greeted Russian officials warmly when he arrived in Russia on Wednesday.

The North Korean leader was entertained by a brass band in Vladivostok before he got inside a car flanked by bodyguards, who – in now familiar scenes – jogged alongside the vehicle as it departed.

What do we know about the summit?

According to the Russian presidential spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin believes the six-party talks on North Korea, which are currently stalled, are the only efficient way of addressing the issue of nuclear weapons on the peninsula.

Those talks, which began in 2003, involve the two Koreas as well as China, Japan, Russia and the US.

“There are no other efficient international mechanisms at the moment,” Mr Peskov told reporters on Wednesday.

“But, on the other hand, efforts are being made by other countries. Here all efforts merit support as long as they really aim at de-nuclearisation and resolving the problem of the two Koreas.”

What do both sides want?

This visit is being widely viewed as an opportunity for North Korea to show it has powerful allies following the breakdown of the talks with the US in February.

The country has blamed US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for the collapse of the Hanoi summit. Earlier this month North Korea demanded that Mr Pompeo be removed from nuclear talks, accusing him of “talking nonsense” and asking for someone “more careful” to replace him.

The summit is also an opportunity for Pyongyang to show that its economic future does not depend solely on the US. Mr Kim may try to put pressure on Moscow to ease sanctions.

Analysts say the summit is an opportunity for Russia to show that it is an important player on the Korean peninsula.

President Putin has been eager to meet the North Korean leader for quite some time. Yet amid the two Trump-Kim summits, the Kremlin has been somewhat sidelined.

Russia, like the US and China, is uncomfortable with North Korea being a nuclear state.

How close are Russia and North Korea?

During the Cold War, the Soviet Union (of which Russia is the main successor state) maintained close military and trade links with its communist ally, North Korea, for ideological and strategic reasons.

After the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, trade links with post-communist Russia shrank and North Korea leaned towards China as its main ally.

Under President Putin, Russia recovered economically and in 2014 he wrote off most of North Korea’s Soviet-era debt in a major goodwill gesture.

While it is arguable how much leverage Russia has with the North today, the communist state still regards it as one of the least hostile foreign powers.

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Putin meets Kim for the first time (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 151.

Alex Christoforou

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The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris take a look at the historic meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in the city of Vladivostok in the Russian Far East.

The meeting marks the first ever summit between the two leaders.

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Via RT…

Leaders of Russia and North Korea sat down for a historic summit in Vladivostok, expressing hope it will revive the peace process in the Korean Peninsula and talks on normalizing relations with the US.

The summit on Russky Island, just off Vladivostok, started a little late because President Vladimir Putin’s flight was delayed. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had made the trip by train, arriving on Wednesday.

In brief public remarks before the talks, the two leaders expressed hope the summit will help move forward the reconciliation process in the Korean Peninsula. Putin welcomed Kim’s contributions to “normalizing relations” with the US and opening a dialogue with South Korea.

Kim said he hoped the Vladivostok summit would be a “milestone” in the talks about denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula, but also build upon “traditionally friendly ties” between Russia and North Korea.

The North Korean leader also made a point of thanking Putin for flying all the way to Vladivostok for the meeting. The Far East Russian city is only 129 kilometers from the border with North Korea.

The historic summit takes place less than two months after Kim’s second summit with US President Donald Trump in Hanoi fell apart without a breakthrough on denuclearization. The US rejected North Korea’s request for partial sanctions relief in return for moves to dismantle nuclear and missile programs; Washington insists on full disarmament before any sanctions are removed.

Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula is the main subject of the Kim-Putin summit, but there will also be talks about bilateral relations, trade, and humanitarian aid. The first one-on-one meeting is scheduled to last about an hour, followed by further consultations involving other government officials.

Following the summit, Putin is scheduled to visit China.

 

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Kim And Putin: Changing The State Of The Board In Korea

The future of Korea could be decided by these two men today.

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Authored by Tom Luongo:


Today is a big day for Korea. The first face-to-face summit of Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un takes place.

At the same time the 2nd annual Belt and Road Forum kicks off in Beijing.

This meeting between Putin and Kim has been in the works for a while but rumors of it only surfaced last week. But don’t let the idea that this was put together at the last minute fool you.

It wasn’t.

The future of Korea could be decided by these two men today.

I know that sounds bold. But hear me out.

And while no one seems to think this meeting is important or that anything of substance will come from it I do. It is exactly the kind of surprise that Putin loves to spring on the world without notice and by doing so change the board state of geopolitics.

  • Russia’s entrance into Syria in 2015, two days after Putin’s historic speech at the U.N. General Assembly
  • 2018’s State of the Union address where he announced hypersonic missiles, embarrassing the U.S. Militiary-Industrial Complex which accelerated the Bolton Doctrine of subjugating the world
  • Flying 2 TU-160 nuclear-armed bombers to Venezuela, creating panic in D.C. leading to the ham-fisted regime change operations there.
  • Nationalization of Yukos.
  • The operation to secure Crimea from U.S. invasion by marines aboard the U.S.S Donald Cook during the Ukrainian uprising against Viktor Yanukovich.

Both Putin and Chinese Premier Xi Jinping are angry at the breakdown of the talks in Hanoi back in February. It was clear that everyone expected that meeting to be a rubber stamp on a deal already agreed to by all parties involved.

In fact the two meetings between Kim and Trump were only possible because Trump convinced them of his sincerity to resolve the ‘denuclearization’ of North Korea which would clear a path to rapid reunification.

It’s why they went along with the U.S.’s increased sanctions on North Korea as administered through the U.N. in 2017.

That John Bolton and Mike Pompeo destroyed those talks and Trump was unwilling or unable (who cares at this point, frankly, useless piece of crap that he is) to stop them embarrassed and betrayed them.

They are now done with Trump.

He’ll get nothing from either of them or Kim until Trump can prove he’s in charge of his administration, which he, clearly, is not.

And they will be moving forward with their own agenda for security and Asian economic integration. So I don’t think the timing of this meeting with that of the Belt and Road Forum is an accident.

And that means moving forward on solving the Korea problem without Trump.

It is clear from the rhetoric of Putin’s top diplomat, the irreplaceable Sergei Lavrov, that Russia’s patience is over. They are no longer interested in what Trump wants and they will now treat the U.S. as a threat, having upped their military stance towards the U.S. to that of “Threat.”

If Bolton wants anything from Russia at this point he best be prepared to start a war or piss off.

This is also why Russia took the gloves off with Ukraine in the run up to the Presidential elections, cutting off energy and machinery exports with Ukraine.

To put paid Putin’s growing impatience with U.S. policies, he just issued the order to allow residents of Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republics to apply for Russian passports.

This will send Bolton into apoplexy. Angela Merkel of Germany will be none too pleased either. Putin is now playing hardball after years of unfailing politeness.

It’s also why Lavrov finalized arms and port deals all over the Middle East in recent weeks, including those with Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey and India.

Bolton, Pompeo and Pence are ideologues. Trump is a typical Baby Boomer, who lives in a bubble of his own design and believes in an America that never existed.

None of them truly understand the fires they are stoking and simply believe in the Manifest Destiny of the U.S. to rule the world over a dim and barbaric world.

Putin, Xi, Rouhani in Iran and Kim in North Korea are pragmatic men. They understand the realities they live in. This is why I see Putin willing tomorrow to sit down with Kim and flaunt the U.N. sanctions and begin the investment process into North Korea that should have begun last year.

Putin would not be making these moves if he didn’t feel that Bolton was all bark and no bite when it came to actual war with Russia. He also knows that Germany needs him more than he needs Germany so despite the feet-dragging and rhetoric Nordstream 2 will go forward.

Trade is expanding between them despite the continued sanctions.

Putin may be willing to cut a deal with President-elect Zelensky on gas transit later in the year but only if the shelling of the LPR and DPR stops and he guarantees no more incidents in the Sea of Azov. This would also mollify Merkel a bit and make it easier for her politically to get Nordstream 2 over the finish line.

There are moments in history when people go too far. Bolton and Pompeo went too far in Hanoi. He will pay the price now. Putin and Kim will likely agree to something in Vladivostok that no one is expecting and won’t look like much at first.

But the reality is this summit itself marks a turning point in this story that will end with the U.S. being, in Trump’s transactional parlance, a “price taker” since it has so thoroughly failed at being a “price maker.”

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