The View Of Assange In The Press
This article on the BBC, gives a summary of what the world’s press has said about Julian Assange’s press conference yesterday. The Guardian, which would have been considered to be a likely supporter, said this.
“At around 2.30pm Assange emerged on to the balcony, a pallid figure dressed in a business-blue shirt and maroon tie. There was an enormous roar. Assange managed a thumbs-up, then tapped the microphone and inquired: “Can you hear me?” This, perhaps, was the moment for someone to shout: “‘E’s not the Messiah! ‘E’s a very naughty boy!”
The Independent, another possible supporter, was in a similar mood.
“A competent image consultant could have warned him not to emerge into the public eye looking as he did. Far from giving him a Churchillian look, his blue shirt, crimson tie and cropped hair created – as one wag pointed out on Twitter – a curious resemblance to John Inman, from the 1970s’ sitcom Are you Being Served?
“But what was much more serious – the elephant in the room, so to speak – was Assange’s wilful failure to say anything about the actual reason that the Swedish police want to question him.”
But The Sun, which seems to be an increasingly serious paper these days, was similar in tone to The Independent, without the theatrical references was quite matter of fact.
“Odious Julian Assange loved every second of his pompous balcony rant. His speech was long on egotistical claptrap, but oddly failed to mention what this extradition case is actually about — the rape of one woman and sexual molestation of another.
“If Mr Assange really does believe in the importance of transparent justice in a democratic state, he should subject HIMSELF to it now and get on the first plane to Sweden.”
Moving to Assange’s home country of Australia, the Australian takes a more practical approach.
“Assange is an Australian and Australia is a staunch US ally. If Assange’s legal future became a major talking point in this country, you could probably expect a bit of nationalism to intrude. It’s likely, though not certain, that Assange would be seen as wearing the white jersey and the US perceived as wearing a black one. In other words, it probably wouldn’t transpire as a US public relations triumph.”
It’s a mess and the sooner it’s cleaned up, the better.