10th December 2010
Remember the good old days of human rights activism and freedom of speech militancy? Those were the days when brave men and women put their lives on the line to defend hapless individuals who spoke out. The halcyon days when selfless warriors braved the bullets of rogue regimes to defend innocent victims.
Alas, those days are no more. Now countries can freely gang up and seal the lips of the tiniest individual who dares expose the truth, slapping a rape charge on him or even threatening to kill him. As we speak, such an individual is today languishing in the dungeons of Wandsworth Prison, the British equivalent of Rwandan Prison 1930.
For exposing the truth of the machinations of the countries of the West, Julian Paul Assange was on Interpol’s Red Notice on the wanted list. That means the national police forces worldwide had to hunt him down and silence him because he is “some sort of chaotic evil malcontent hell-bent on” effecting the destruction of Western “democracies”.
On his WikiLeaks website, Assange has published information that is supposed to be in the public domain, anyway. He has not called for the resumption of the unfinished 1994-Genocide, as Ingabire Victoire has done for Rwanda every time she has had the chance, albeit in thinly-veiled terms. He is not fronted by any terrorist organisation like the FDLR, the way Ingabire and Rusesabagina are.
Yet, except for the scattered voices of tiny individuals, the silence about his plight is deafening. Pray, where was I when the era of giant rights defenders was slipping away? It now looks like so long ago, when the ruckus of the advocacy groups used to shake the world by its roots.
I know, here in Rwanda they used to fill us with dread but, sincerely, I miss them. Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, Reporters Without borders and innumerable others, all gone? I remember how they used to cry into our ears to awaken us lest we were gagged and oppressed out of existence. Every morning used to come as a miracle of our survival.
Now an innocent man languishes in prison and no one is talking. We know he is innocent of the rape charges against him, of Miss A and Miss W. After all, Miss A is the same lady who invited Assange to her house for a night. The day after the alleged rape, Miss A threw a party in honour of her “rapist”? Whom are we kidding? We know also that Miss W’s encounter with Assange was only in a packed film theatre, an unlikely scene for any normal “rapist”!
Julian Assange is not a criminal. In fact, he is a blessing to many. But for his WikiLeaks, how could we have been privy to the shenanigans against Rwanda of a dubious judge and a génocidaire government in far-off Europe?
Judge Bruguière, claiming to be independent of the government, issued arrest warrants against top RPF officials, the very people who together with their comrades stopped the 1994 Genocide. The independent French government, to which he refers, is the same Chirac government that assisted the Habyarimana government and together they organised and executed the Genocide.
Now WikiLeaks has revealed that Bruguière “presented his decision to French officials, including President Chirac, to consult with them because he was convinced of the need to co-ordinate timing with the government.” Clearly, this was a super-power government using a so-called ‘independent judge’ to bully an innocent government and country that were nursing wounds inflicted by the same bully.
Surely, our international rights defenders, this is the chance for you to repair what is left of your tattered image. Seize it, because we know you are still around and are only in self-induced slumber. Speak up for this man.
An innocent man, persecuted for exposing the dirty truth. Now powerful politicians, captains of the leading media houses and heads of the moneyed organisations of the world are calling for his execution for sparking off what is being touted as the “First Wold Infowar”.
But, come to think of it, maybe these rights defenders don’t care about their own people. Their time is consumed by the concern of our people and they have no time to remember their own.
Which is confusing because, if it were so, then they should have time to understand us. If a well established government in the West can panic at the mere mention of its own plans, words and deeds, what about a third world government that is still fragile discovering that an individual is being fronted by a criminal group whose intention is to destabilise it?
No, doubtful ‘rights-defence’ constructs fighting for phantom victims, your double standards are known and you have never fooled anyone. We in the third world should rally together and rescue this man. For all I know, maybe these job-seeking ‘defenders’ were lined up for the next exposure in WikiLeaks!
Third world countries, in the name of transparency and equality of the world’s states, let’s rise in defence of the rights of Julian Paul Assange and his group at WikiLeaks!