Julian Assange’s Father on Looming Extradition and Imperative of Mass Resistance

On the 22nd September 2022, Chris Hedges reports on ScheerPost and interviews John Shipton available on You Tube

The persecution of Julian Assange is a window into the collapse of the rule of law, the rise of what the political philosopher Sheldon Wolin calls our system of inverted totalitarianism.

A society that prohibits the capacity to speak in truth extinguishes the capacity to live in justice.

Tyrannies invert the rule of law. They turn the law into an instrument of injustice. They cloak their crimes in a faux legality. They use the decorum of the courts and trials, to mask their criminality. Those, such as Julian Assange, who expose that criminality to the public are dangerous, for without the pretext of legitimacy the tyranny loses credibility and has nothing left in its arsenal but fear, coercion and violence.

The long campaign against Julian and WikiLeaks is a window into the collapse of the rule of law, the rise of what the political philosopher Sheldon Wolin calls our system of inverted totalitarianism, a form of totalitarianism that maintains the fictions of the old capitalist democracy, including its institutions, iconography, patriotic symbols and rhetoric, but internally has surrendered total control to the dictates of global corporations.

I was in the London courtroom when Julian was being tried by Judge Vanessa Baraitser, an updated version of the Queen of Hearts in Alice-in Wonderland demanding the sentence before pronouncing the verdict. It was judicial farce. There was no legal basis to hold Julian in prison. There was no legal basis to try him, an Australian citizen, under the U.S. Espionage Act. The CIA spied on Julian in the embassy through a Spanish company, UC Global, contracted to provide embassy security. This spying included recording the privileged conversations between Julian and his lawyers as they discussed his defense. This fact alone invalidated the trial. Julian is being held in a high security prison so the state can, as Nils Melzer, the U.N. Special Rapporteur on Torture, has testified, continue the degrading abuse and torture it hopes will lead to his psychological if not physical disintegration.

The U.S. government directed the London prosecutor James Lewis. Lewis presented these directives to Baraitser. Baraitser adopted them as her legal decision. It was judicial pantomime. Lewis and the judge insisted they were not attempting to criminalize journalists and muzzle the press while they busily set up the legal framework to criminalize journalists and muzzle the press. And that is why the court worked so hard to mask the proceedings from the public, limiting access to the courtroom to a handful of observers and making it hard and at times impossible for us to access the trial online. It was a tawdry show trial, not an example of the best of English jurisprudence but the Lubyanka.

It is imperative that those of us who care about a free press and the persecution of an innocent man, for Julian has not committed a crime, make our presence felt in the streets. I will be in Washington on October 8 with, I hope, thousands of others to ring the capital to call for Julians’ release, an act that will be replicated by protesters surrounding the British parliament the same day. Joining me from Mexico, where Mexican president Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has defended Julian’s innocence and offered asylum to the WikiLeaks founder, is Julians’s father John Shipton.

Read original article in SheerPost

Melbourne Human Chain – 8th October 2022

A whole a week of rallies and activities culminating in a film with David McBride on Friday (7th Oct) and the formation of a Human Chain along the banks of the Yarra on Saturday (8th Oct)

  • Monday, 3rd October 12:00 – 2:00 pm:
    BBQ and party for WikiLeaks 16th birthday at ABC offices, Southbank.
  • Tuesday, 4th October 10:00 am – 9:00 pm:
    11 hour vigil at UK Consulate.
  • Wednesday, 5th October 11:00 am – 1:00 pm:
    Picket the office Attorney General Mark Dreyfus (Mordialloc).
  • Thursday, 6th October 6:30 pm:
    David McBride film plus Q&A panel with John Shipton (Nova Cinema Carlton).
  • Friday, 7th October 10.30 am – 12:00 pm
    Picket office of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Richard Marles (Geelong).

Saturday 8th October, 11am
Human Chain (Calender)

Make a Human Chain along the banks of the Yarra for a visual show of solidarity for Julian Assange.

A map of the area is attached below for your convenience.

Preliminary event schedule:
  • 11:00 am:
    • The Human Chain will start forming on Princes Bridge.
    • The gathering will be divided on the bridge into two single files each moving down and heading west either side of the Yarra River.
    • Upon reaching the pedestrian (Evan Walker) bridge, each line will turn onto the bridge and be heading towards each other.
    • The lines will meet and connect with an almighty uproar.
    • There is wheelchair access via the River Terrace with lift access at the Federation Square corner of Princes Bridge on Swanston Street.
    • Depending on volunteer interest, marshals in yellow vests will be strategically placed to assist and coordinate movement.
  • 12:00 pm:
    The Human Chain moves toward Princes bridge to gather in preparation for speeches.
  • 12:30 pm:
    John Shipton, Gabriel Shipton and David McBride speak on Princes Bridge.
  • 1:00 pm:
    March to Government House at Kings Domain for a pop-up protest picnic with music.
  • 4:00 pm:

Many in the West Support Assange’s Leaks, and Few Want Him Extradited to U.S.

On the 17th September, Alex Willemyns reported in Morning Consult

As WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange remains in extradition limbo, a new Morning Consult survey shows Americans, Europeans and Australians are far more likely to say the Australian national was “right” than “wrong” to shed light on U.S. government policies such as the secret surveillance of American citizens, and few want to see him extradited to face espionage charges in the United States.

Read complete article in Morning Consult

UN Peace Day Rallies – Sept 2022


Melbourne UN Peace Day rally
State Library of Victoria
noon 18 SeptemberIt is lies that start wars and have brought the world to the brink of climate devastation. It is truth, and acting on truth, that can save us.

Our theme for this UN Peace Day rally is Truth Not War.

The event will be a broad-based, inclusive, colourful and peaceful rally with speeches and music that celebrate Melbourne’s longstanding tradition of rallying for Peace, opposing nuclear weapons and arms buildup, respecting and protecting our environment and showing resolve in protecting peacemakers like WikiLeaks publisher and the recipient of the 2011 Sydney Peace Prize, Julian Assange.

In the words of Prime Minister Albanese: “Enough is enough!”

Join us at the State Library of Victoria.
11am – Music starts 
12 noon – Speeches and more music 
1pm – March down Swanston St to the British Consulate, 90 Collins St 

Organised by Melbourne 4 Assange, PEN Melbourne, Anti AUKUS Vic and Extinction Rebellion


–  Wednesday 21 Sept 10am
– – US Consulate
– Thursday 22 Sept 11am-12pm
– – Electorate office PM Anthony Albanese Marrickville.


 –  Wednesday 21 Sept 12.30pm
– – Garema Place Canberra City


–  Wednesday 21 Sept – 12.30pm 
– – Parliament House Steps Adelaide 
– –  Free Assange SA Government Vote (More)

Julian Assange Presented Keys to Mexico City

On the 15th September 2022, Gabriel Shipton tweeted about John Shipton and he accepting the keys to Mexico City on behalf of his brother Julian Assange

Editors Note: Mexico City has a population of 9 million. More than a third of that of Australia

Further coverage in the ABC reports

“The Mexican President López Obrador has written multiple times to Joe Biden, calling for the prosecution against Julian to be dropped,” Gabriel Shipton told the ABC.

“He has also offered Julian asylum in Mexico.

“He met with [US] Secretary of State [Antony] Blinken a couple of days ago, and also in that meeting discussed Julian’s freedom and how to get Julian out of prison.”

His family is continuing to pressure Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to intervene in the case.

“There’s this expectation in the electorate in Australia that Anthony Albanese, the Prime Minister, is going to actually do something to end Julian’s persecution,” Mr Shipton said.

“I’m beginning to sense that there’s a bit of disappointment after a hundred days of government that the Albanese Government hasn’t been able to act to free Julian.”

Gabriel Shipton said he wanted to see the case resolved and his brother freed before the end of the year.

“If the Australian government can manage that, I think that would be a Christmas miracle for us,” he said “We take a lot of energy from the growing wave of support around the world for Julian’s freedom.”

Also covered in The Associated Press

This week the objective was to insert mention of Julian Assange into a meeting between Mexico’s president and the United States’ top diplomat. Next week, it will be to have Australia’s prime minister bring it up with the U.S. president at Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral

“We call President López Obrador an ice-breaker,” because afterward the leaders of Chile, Colombia and Bolivia called for his release too, Gabriel Shipton said during the visit to Mexico. Among a packed scheduled of events, John Shipton received the key to the capital Wednesday on behalf of Assange, a ceremonial honor the city bestows on distinguished guests. The day before, he addressed Mexico’s Senate.

President of Mexico Andrés Manuel López Obrador demanding the release of Julian Assange

Read covering article in the
ABC News
The Associated Press
The New York Post

Assange supporters call for ‘Truth not War’ on UN Peace Day

On the 14th September 2022, the Assange Campaign issued this press release

Calls of ‘Truth not War’ can be heard around the globe this week as supporters of the world’s most famous political prisoner, Australian journalist Julian Assange, rally for his immediate release by the 21stanniversary of the United Nations International Day of Peace (21 Sept 2022). 

Julian’s growing army of millions of supporters – from ordinary people to governments, politicians, professional and non-government organisations, charities, activists, lawyers, journalists, authors, academics, doctors, artists, unions and grass-roots community groups – are all calling on the USA and UK Governments to stop the US extradition and drop the charges against the award-winning Australian journalist and WikiLeaks founder.

On 5 April 2010, WikiLeaks published ‘Collateral Murder’, a classified US military video depicting the indiscriminate slaying of over a dozen civilians in the Iraqi suburb of New Baghdad, including two Reuters news staff.

Julian has now been detained and imprisoned in the UK for over 12 years in what former United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, Nils Melzer describes as “murder by slow torture”.

Julian’s father, John Shipton says that the politically-motivated US charges are ‘unprecedented in our times, of attacking knowledge’: our right to know the truth, the truth about government war crimes and policies, adherence to law and international law and abrogation of the International Declaration of Human Rights.

“Julian Assange, for publishing the truth; the truth of monumental state crimes, is constantly pursued with severe and unrelenting malice, exceedingly bitter animosity and a vile, deceitful and unscrupulous crusade of lies and slander,” says John.

“The precedent set by this political prosecution is extremely dangerous. The extraterritorial application by the United States of its laws to Australian citizen Julian Assange and the death penalty sentence equivalent, 175-year incarceration. Julian will pay the ultimate price for exposing the truth and his persecution inevitably chills and intimidates exposure of government criminality and public contribution to policy formation. Erecting a wall of secrecy between government and the people. Results of which, are before our eyes; corruption, war crimes and crimes against humanity … us!”

“I mention the destruction and emiseration of Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Yemen … We cannot and must not allow this to occur.”

he United States government has charged Julian with 17 counts under the Espionage Act 1917 and one charge of conspiracy to commit unauthorised access to a government computer, a violation of the US Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), a terrorism offence under the US Patriot Act.

However, last month US Republican Senator Rand Paul called for the repeal of the Espionage Act after it was used by the FBI to justify a recent raid on the home of former US President Donald Trump.

The US Government and its spy agency the CIA, now face multiple court proceedings in the UK, USA and Spain over:

  • their ongoing persecution of Julian Assange including the plot to murder and kidnap him
  • violations against Julian’s basic human rights
  • illegal bugging of a foreign embassy (the London Ecuadorian Embassy)
  • hacking into world leaders’ personal phones and emails
  • the violation of the US First Amendment of American citizens who visited Julian during the 7 years he spent in asylum at the Ecuadorian Embassy before he was forcibly dragged out by London police, and
  • Julian’s ongoing, unjustified, solitary confinement incarceration in the high-security HM Belmarsh Prison where he is seriously ill and being denied lifesaving medical attention, access to his legal team and regular family visits.

Julian’s brother, Gabriel Shipton – who is in Mexico with his father for talks with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador- says that Assange relatives, along with those of Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King and Che Guevara have been invited by the President as special guests to attend the country’s Independence Day celebrationson 16 September. 

“We are humbled by the invitation from Mexican President Obrador. The Mexican President continually stands for Julian’s freedom publicly and in his talks with President Biden. He has also offered Julian the protection of Mexican citizenship. Our family again plead with the Australian government to simply stand up for one of its own citizens and publicly call for Julian’s immediate release,” says Gabriel.

Adds John Shipton: “We urge Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to act soon, otherwise it may be too late to save Julian’s life. And if Julian dies or if the US extradition succeeds, it will also be the death of truth in war, the death of press freedom and journalists, freedom of speech, the protection of human rights plus international law and whistle blowers. There’s a lot at stake here.”

In Australia, UN Peace Day events will be held in:
Sunday 18 Sept noon-2pm,
– – State Library of Victoria Peace Day ‘Truth Not War’.
– – FreeJulian Assange event (More)
Wednesday 21 Sept 10am,
– – US Consulate
– Thursday 22 Sept 11am-12pm,
– – Electorate office PM Anthony Albanese Marrickville.
Wednesday 21 Sept 12.30pm,
– – Garema Place Canberra City
Wednesday 21 Sept – 12.30pm 
– – Parliament House Steps Adelaide 
– – Free Assange SA Government Vote (More)

Listen or download radio grabs of John Shipton speaking about his son, Julian Assange 

Media contact: Jodie Harrison 
+61 (0)425 754 370

Download press release
Australian edition
International edition

Songs for Julian Assange Events

In August 2022, circulated via email, a list of songs suitable for events.

Copyright has been waived at a prior Free Assange rally. A blanket waiver for not for profit Free Assange rallies is being followed up.

For more information contact our music master

Please feel free to add to this list and share wit all Assange supporters or community groups 

Leo Sayer
– The Wrong Man https://youtu.be/3rAJqGp7-C0 
Bruce Woodley
– I Am Australian https://youtu.be/xh9DusRmM-0 
The  Seekers
– I’ll Never Find Another You https://youtu.be/MsgXbSUMzR4 
– Jailbreak https://youtu.be/g8xScxmekQk 
Green Day
– American Idiot https://youtu.be/Ee_uujKuJMI 
Midnight Oil
– US Forces https://youtu.be/SAFv2NEE-_c 
Midnight Oil
– Beds Are Burning https://youtu.be/ejorQVy3m8E 
– Pride (In the Name of Love) https://youtu.be/LHcP4MWABGY 
Pink Floyd
– Money https://youtu.be/-0kcet4aPpQ 
– Another Brick In The Wall  https://youtu.be/PDl6iuku_mw 
– Wish You Were Here https://youtu.be/IXdNnw99-Ic 
Roger Waters
– Mother https://youtu.be/9lCFaSL9aSE 
Bob Marley & The Wailers
– Get Up Stand Up (for your rights) https://youtu.be/JLYOOezs3DA 
The Traveling Wilburys
– Handle Me With Care https://youtu.be/1o4s1KVJaVA 
Bob Dylan
– Times They Are A-Changin https://youtu.be/8b3RqnzgH1E 
– Masters Of War https://youtu.be/h2mabTnMHe8 
The Black Eyed Peas
– Where Is The Love? https://youtu.be/WpYeekQkAdc 
Cat Stevens
– Peace Train https://youtu.be/UkTQri3a4Gg 
John Farnham – You’re The Voice https://youtu.be/tbkOZTSvrHs 
Creedance Clearwater Revival
– Fortunate Son https://youtu.be/06CPuM0UVVM 
Pharrell Williams
– Freedom https://youtu.be/LlY90lG_Fuw 
Rage Against The Machine
– Killing In The Name Of https://youtu.be/bWXazVhlyxQ 
The Cranberries
– Zombie https://youtu.be/6Ejga4kJUts 

Open Letter on the Concerns of Many Australians About the Well Being and Future of Julian Assange.

On the 28th August 2022, The Assange Campaign Inc wrote to the Prime Minster of Australia and copies to other senior ministers. The open letter reads:

Subject: Open Letter on the Concerns of Many Australians About the Well Being and Future of Julian Assange.

To:  Honourable Anthony Albanese MP, Prime Minister
CC: Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon Penny Wong
        Attorney-General, Hon Mark Dreyfus QC, MP

Dear Prime Minister, 

As secretary for the Assange Campaign Inc., I wish to raise with you the concerns of many Australians about the well being and future of Julian Assange.The Assange Campaign Inc is Australia’s peak body supporting Julian Assange.  The concerns and issues we raise below represent the views of:

  • 700,000+ petitioners on change.org
  • senders of more than 110,000 + emails to Members of Parliament
  • 500,000+ viewers of the film Ithaka on the ABC
  • numerous groups that participate in events nationwide
  • a multitude of users active online and in social media
  • active groups of professionals such as:
    • Lawyers for Assange
    • Doctors for Assange
    • Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance (MEAA)
    • concerned religious groups

Recent polling shows us the majority of Australians who are aware of Mr. Assange’s circumstances favour his return to Australia.

I am writing to ask you to use your influence with your colleagues in the UK and the United States to ensure Mr Assange is released from  Belmarsh prison and into a home detention and/or electronic monitoring setting as soon possible.

We were very encouraged by your election commitment that the “ongoing pursuit of Mr Assange” served no evident “purpose” and that “enough is enough”.  We wish to take up your offer to “change the way politics operates in this country and actually answer questions”, and to provide some “transparency” of process long denied by the previous Government.

Our question, then, is what progress in your ninety-nine days of government has been made to ensure that Mr Assange’s mental and physical health are prioritised which means his release from Belmarsh prison.

This request is made on the basis it addresses many urgent concerns relating to Mr. Assange such as:

  • unrestricted access to medical attention of his own choosing
  • unrestricted access to legal services in his own timing and choosing
  • unrestricted access to the healing benefits of family life
  • a non violent detainee should not be incarcerated with violent criminals
  • an uncharged detainee should not be incarcerated with convicted detainees
  • an uncharged detainee should not be incarcerated in an institution lacking facilities to provide for uncharged detainees
  • one thousand, two hundred and fifteen days incarcerated in Belmarsh Prison without conviction

We have been warned Mr Assange’s situation is life threatening and this request is based on the presumption of innocence before conviction and other core international human rights. Both the UK and Australia are signatories to common binding treaties.

This is simply a request for you to stand up for fair play for Australian citizens when detained abroad.

Our grassroots connections believe that your commitment to ‘change the way politics operates in this country’ has added heart into the management of our country, better reflecting our national spirit of fairness. Your commitment to the Voice to Parliament has been critical to this. We understand you will receive various official briefings on the Assange case but, for all those in Australia and globally who fear for Julian, we hope you can reply not just from your head but with some of this heart your Government has shared elsewhere.

We wish you every success in Government and feel our democracy will be strengthened by it.

Yours Sincerely
Matthew Bretherton


In support, a quote from the book,

‘The Trial of Julian Assange’ by  Nils Melzer (Former UN Rapporteur on torture)

“Quite obviously, however, for purely preventive custody, the extremely restrictive conditions at Belmarsh were neither necessary nor proportionate – two mandatory basic requirements for any lawful interference with fundamental rights. Instead, Assange should have been moved to a less securitized institution or to guarded house arrest, with unrestricted access to his professional activities, to his family, his lawyers and the outside world more generally.”

(Page 273

A summary of this book is available at https://www.assangecampaign.org.au/trial-assange/

Letter can be downloaded as a pdf

References for commitments used in letter
1. Daily Mail 2021-2-3
‘Enough is Enough’ he [Mr. Albanese] responded. ‘I don’t have sympathy for many of his actions but essentially I can’t see what is served by keeping him incarcerated.’ 
2 Sydney Morning Herald Albanese reveals two-term strategy if Labor wins
The Labor leader said if he won government on Saturday he wanted to “change the way that politics operates in this country” by avoiding soundbites and “actually answering questions”.
3. Twitter @AlboMP
The Australian people deserve accountability and transparency, not secrecy.
4. ALP National Platform 2021 Page 144
Labor believes that the Australian government should be doing everything necessary to ensure that Mr Julian Assange is treated fairly and humanely, and welcomes the priority given to the health and welfare of Mr Assange in the UK Court’s decision. This includes ensuring that under no circumstances should Mr Assange or any Australian face the death penalty. The UK Court has found that Mr Assange should not be extradited to the USA given his ill-health, and Labor believes it is now time for this long drawn out case against Julian Assange to be brought to an end.

Julian Assange Files Perfected Grounds of Appeal

On the 26th August 2022, Julian Assange’s legal team file his Perfected Grounds of Appeal

Today, 26 August 2022, Julian Assange is filing his Perfected Grounds of Appeal before the High Court of Justice Administrative Court. The Respondents are the Government of the United States and the
Secretary of State for the Home Department, Priti Patel.

The Perfected Grounds of Appeal contain the arguments on which Julian Assange intends to challenge District Judge Vanessa Baraitser’s decision of 4 January 2021, and introduces significant new evidence that has developed since that ruling.

The Perfected Grounds of Appeal concerning the United States Government include the following

  • Julian Assange is being prosecuted and punished for his political opinions (s.81(a) of the Extradition Act);
  • Julian Assange is being prosecuted for protected speech (Article 10)
  • The request itself violates the US-UK Extradition Treaty and International law because it is for political offences;
  • The US Government has misrepresented the core facts of the case to the British courts; and
  • The extradition request and its surrounding circumstances constitute an abuse of process.

The Perfected Grounds of Appeal concerning the Secretary of State for the Home Department (SSHD) include arguments that Home Secretary Priti Patel erred in her decision to approve the extradition order on grounds of specialty and because the request itself violates Article 4 of the US-UK Extradition Treaty.


4 January 2021: Westminster Magistrates Court discharges (throws out) the US extradition request against Julian Assange. District judge Vanessa Baraitser rules that extradition is barred under the 2003
Extradition Act because it is “opressive” (s.91). The United States Government appeals.
27-28 October 2021: US appeal hearing before the High Court Appeal. Julian Assange suffers a
transient ischemic attack (TIA) on the first day.
10 December 2021: The decision to discharge the extradition request is overturned by the High Court due to the United States Government issuing so-called ‘diplomatic assurances’ to the UK Government.
The High Court rejects the United States Government’s arguments that the district judge erred in her findings.
14 March 2022: The Supreme Court refuses Julian Assange permission to appeal the High Court’s decision. The case is sent back to the Magistrates’ Court with instruction to issue the extradition order.
20 April 2022: The Magistrate issues the extradition order, which is sent to Home Secretary Priti Patel for approval.
17 June 2022: Home Secretary Priti Patel approves the extradition order to extradite Julian Assange to the United States.

Coverage in many media outlets:
ABC News