Flick Harrison on Mon, 13 May 2019 21:04:50 +0200 (CEST)
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Re: <nettime> Sweden: Preliminary investigation in the Assange case to be reopened
- Subject: Re: <nettime> Sweden: Preliminary investigation in the Assange case to be reopened
- From: Flick Harrison <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Mon, 13 May 2019 12:00:03 -0700
- Cc: a moderated mailing list for net criticism <email@example.com>
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This will be a tricky discursive moment. Mainly the battle lines will zig zag around Hillary supporters, pro-military authoritarians, anti-feminist rape deniers, Russian bots, whistle-blower defenders, Russiagaters and libertarian hackers.
Any position on the Swedish rape charges will inevitably be tied to deep-state conspiracies and the continuing suspended animation of the zombie US Election 2016.
I have already seen talking points arguing that the "real" problem in Sweden is sexual assaults by foreign immigrants, which seems to be a potentially-powerful alt-right vector to derail the conversation from Assange's behaviour and the rise of Russian active measures into a more emotional racist ranting that serves a general right-populist messaging strategy - which somehow has absorbed the left anti-interventionist messaging of the last 30 years into a sort of isolationist nationalism that fully accepts Assange as a hero.
Likewise the debate over whether Assange's actions constitute "rape" promises to divide the public along exactly similar lines to the ones drawn in the cases of Jian Ghomeshi, Bart O'Kavanaugh and Trump himself. The Putinist alt-right cry that "gay liberal cuck feminazis" are the "real enemy" will find solid purchase once again, as every sexual assault accusation is just a tool to bring down righteous men of course!
I would like to see Assange get a fair trial in Sweden only to flush out the incels in his support base, and really show the world how a proper country does sexual assault prosecutions. Scratch that, some surface googling suggests Sweden is no utopia on that count.
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