In one swift move Sweden shifted the burden of Julian Assange’s plight from themselves directly onto Britain. Watching things like a hawk is the United States which has traditionally enjoyed what can only be described as an air-tight alliance with both Sweden and the UK. This is more true in 2017 than it has been in recent decades.
Sweden had the audacity to drop the investigation against Assange without doing their ethical duty and exonerating Assange. Although he is all but exonerated against rape allegations that were suspect from day one, his name has been tarnished and those gullible enough to still believe what states like Sweden say, means that Assange’s reputation has suffered a tremendous injustice.
Now though, all eyes turn to Britain. Wikileaks has reported that UK police still intend to arrest Julian Assange for a comparatively minor bail infraction dating back to 2012 when he left legal British jurisdiction and entered the Embassy of Ecuador in London.
Many correctly worry that a possible UK arrest of Assange, should he leave the Embassy, is merely a legalistic cover for detaining Assange long enough for the US to ask for an extradition of the Wikileaks founder where he could face charges of espionage that could carry the death penalty.
However, due to the fact that America hasn’t yet fully descended to the level of kangaroo court justice and because many American lawyers would love going up against the Trump justice department, even if it meant defending Julian Assange, things in America in respect of Assange, continue to move at a snail’s pace.
This gives Assange a window of time in which his fate is technically exclusively in the hands of Britain.
Britain is in the hot seat and has several options.
First of all, Britain could relentlessly stand by the idea of arresting Assange should he come out which would essentially mean that until America finally makes up its mind in respect of what to do with Assange, he could effectively be in Embassy limbo-land for the foreseeable future. This in spite of the fact that the reason for Britain holding him on bail is now totally defunct. The idea of holding someone on a bail violation for a total non-event seems preposterous, indeed it is and Assange has said so.
Hardly anyone in the British deep state has any sympathy for Assange, but then again few in Sweden did either. Britain just may decide to wash its hands of the issue and let Ecuador and America slug things out for the next however many years.
In such a case, Britain could wash its hands of the ‘Assange problem’ by ascending to Ecuador’s request for Britain to allow the safe transfer of Assange to Ecuador.
Why might Britain benefit from such a move?
At the moment, Britain is in the midst of a General Election campaign which the incumbent government looks set to win in spite of having no real policies and being led by one of the most confused, indecisive and uncharacteristic Prime Minister in recent memory.
A wise adviser might just say to the British government that if Assange’s safe passage to Ecuador could be arranged, it could distract news coverage from an election wherein every time the leading incumbent speaks, she loses points and every time the opposition speaks, it narrows the gap in opinion polls.
Furthermore, at a time when the UK’s governmental lawyers are busily engaged in the Brexit process, dealing with Assange would appear to be a time consuming and expensive headache that they do not need.
Then of course there is America and Donald Trump. Does a Donald Trump legal team currently fighting the looming threats of impeachment really have time to take on Assange?
To that end, where do Trump’s loyalties lie? He praised Wikileaks during the election, though recently his CIA director Mike Pompeo and Attorney General Jeff Sessions have condemned him in the harshest terms imaginable.
The worst case scenario is that the deep states of Britain and America, intertwined as they are, may want only the worst for Assange without thinking of the time and energy it would take to ruin Assange’s life more than they all ready have done.
The only glimmer of hope is that Britain might get as exhausted of the issue as Sweden apparently did.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.