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Friday, January 14, 2011

The Empire Versus the Two Julians, Assange and Heicklen, and the Anti War Activists

The US government really wants Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. They’re mad at him for releasing video of the military’s murder of civilians in Iraq and more recently a list of sensitive diplomatic cables too long to get into here. A grand jury has been empaneled in Alexandria, VA  to consider criminal charges against Assange. He may never be extradited to the US for trial, but what if he is?

He has many supporters here in the peace community. This includes the Fully Informed Jury Association (FIJA ) activists  who started a campaign, Julian Assange's Fully Informed Jury, at the website The Point. The campaign’s objective is "If Julian Assange is extradited to the United States, I will do my best to fully inform his jury." Inform them of what you may ask? Of the right of the jury to nullify the law regardless of the facts of a case. From FIJA’s website:
The FIJA mission is to educate Americans regarding their full powers as jurors, including their ability to rely on personal conscience, to judge the merit of the law and its application, and to nullify bad law, when necessary for justice, by finding for the defendant.
The US government is also after a number of anti war activists. The FBI raided their houses and an office in Minneapolis, Chicago, Michigan, and North Carolina last September after sending in an agent to infiltrate and spy on them. Twenty-three people have been issued subpoenas. The first are scheduled to appear before grand juries on January 25, 2011. As this author pointed out in "Jury Nullification May Be The Only Salvation For The Antiwar Activists":
Given that we live in an age when it has been said that "A good prosecutor could get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich." It is sadly very likely that indictments will follow. If this is the case jury nullification may be these activists only salvation.
The prospect of not being able to convict opponents of its tyranny must be terrifying to the government. There is no better way to stop FIJA activists from educating jurors and, therefore, keeping dissidents free than to start charging them with felonies for their activism.  This may be why they are now charging FIJA activist Julian Heicklen with jury tampering. Professor Heicklen is a long time activist and leader in educating juries. He has been harassed and arrested many times for handing out FIJA literature at federal courthouses, especially the one at 500 Pearl Street in New York City where he has to appear for a hearing on January 24, 2011.

According to Professor Heicklen’s website the summons he received was short on details as to when and where he committed the alleged tampering:
…the summons does not include any deposition from the accuser, so that I do not know the specific incident that is involved. The summons states that there is only one charge, but gives no particulars, including a date, time, location of the incident, names & dates of jurors tampered, & how tampered.
Having been to several of these FIJA outreach events with Julian Heicklen myself I’m quite suspicious of these charges. Not once have I seen him tell a juror how to vote on a case. He merely hands out fliers to all passersby. His prosecution can be seen as nothing more than an attempt to squash our efforts to educate juries on how they can check tyranny with jury nullification. No doubt the government will be most upset if they try Assange or the anti war activists only to have them set free by a jury bent on justice. To make sure that happens we have to make sure that first Julian Heicklen is found not guilty. Whatever your political views, show your support for him. Come to his hearing on the 24th if you can. Together we can defeat this tyranny.


  1. I am concerned that Julian Heicklen has not made public the actual summons that he was issued - all pages - so that everyone everywhere can see for themselves that "no particulars, including a date, time, location of the incident, names & dates of jurors tampered, & how tampered". I think that just such a publication by Twitter influenced a lot people against the "legality" of that court order. And everyone needs to keep in mind that "legal", "illegal", "lawful", "crime", etc are all defined by governments.

    I've registered my concerns at Julian's website and hope that he gives serious consideration to the wide viewed longterm effect his website publicized letter to the Court Clerk (and apparent planned approach) is likely to have on the efforts to make jury nullification understood and utilized. The specific recommendations of 2 previous commenters there appear sound and well-reasoned. I hope that he makes use of them.

  2. Good point, Kitty. Thanks for the comment.

  3. The calls in our flacid media to moderate rhetoric in the wake of the Tucson shootings underline the incompetence of our institutions. The media have marginalized leftist views and analyses almost out of existence, so that almost all the harsh rhetoric is coming from fascists. We have packed the Federal bench with fascists, as evidenced by the charge against Julian Heicklen. The "fair-minded" judge killed in Tucson had presided over any number of high-profile cases in support of Prohibition. Those who believe in karma and freedom may regard his summary removal from the bench favorably, but there are many more fascist agents ensconced in power in America today.

  4. Robert, Libertarian views are just as marginalized. Thanks for the comment.

  5. Forget Assange and his $1,500,000 corporate book deal (some rebel, what a sell-out), instead read a book that’s really been BANNED like “America Deceived II” by E.A. Blayre III.
    Last link (before Google Books bans it also]: