WikiLeaks' Julian Assange is merely 'fighting baddies,' says his mom
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's mother Christine is defending her son as fighting a good fight, saying she gave him a strong grounding in ethics.
The mother of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has emerged to defend her son as fighting a good fight, saying she raised a highly intelligent and sensitive boy, and gave him a strong grounding in ethics.Skip to next paragraph
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"Whether you agree with what Julian does or not, living by what you believe in and standing up for something is a good thing," she told the Australian newspaper Herald Sun, in an article dated Dec. 2. "He sees what he's doing as doing a good thing in the world, fighting baddies, if you like."
But that’s not exactly what government authorities are considering as they seek to arrest the renegade Australian. Mr. Assange is wanted on rape allegations in Sweden, the international police organization Interpol has issued a “red notice” alert for his arrest, and Australian and American law enforcement agencies are reportedly studying the possibility of issuing criminal charges against him.
While leftist Latin American governments praise his efforts, former friends and colleagues describe him as a self-absorbed authoritarian. Yet none can deny his growing stardom. He is reportedly leading the poll for Time magazine’s 2010 “Person of the Year” – a title that went last year to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and before that to President-elect Barack Obama.
Person of the Year?
Born in Townsville, Queensland, the former computer hacker and now self-styled “editor-in-chief” of WikiLeaks on Sunday began releasing the website’s third major cache of confidential US documents in five months.
Each release has set a new mark for the “largest leak” of government documents in US history. The latest includes 251,287 US diplomatic cables – provided in advance to Germany's Der Spiegel, Spain's El País, France's Le Monde, and the Guardian in Britain (which in turn passed it along to The New York Times). As of Wednesday morning, only 485 cables were viewable on WikiLeaks.org, with the remainder to go online in the coming months.
A Swedish court issued a detention order for Assange on Nov. 18, on allegations of "rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion” that prosecutors had been investigating for months. Assange denies any wrongdoing and has appealed the arrest warrant, Sweden's High Court said on Dec. 1 – a day after Interpol issued a 'red notice' against Assange connected to Sweden's allegations.
According to the New York Daily Post, a British lawyer acting for Assange said "the basis for the rape charge purely seems to constitute a post-facto dispute over consensual, but unprotected sex days after the event."