Julian Assange makes his first public appearance in two months, ever since he took refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in London. The WikiLeaks founder was granted political asylum on Thursday — a decision that ignited a wave of international responses, with the UK and Sweden opposing the verdict and Latin American countries strongly supporting Ecuador’s move.
You can read below the UK mainstream’s slant that has been put forth in print regarding Assange and his speech. It’s rather obvious that they seem more like agents of the state than journalists:
Luke Harding, the Guardian: “At around 2.30pm Assange emerged on to the balcony, a pallid figure dressed in a business-blue shirt and maroon tie. There was an enormous roar. Assange managed a thumbs-up, then tapped the microphone and inquired: “Can you hear me?” This, perhaps, was the moment for someone to shout: “‘E’s not the Messiah! ‘E’s a very naughty boy!”
The Sun’s editorial: “Odious Julian Assange loved every second of his pompous balcony rant. His speech was long on egotistical claptrap, but oddly failed to mention what this extradition case is actually about — the rape of one woman and sexual molestation of another.
Melanie Phillips, the Daily Mail: “Posing as a champion of justice and human rights, Assange made a theatrical statement from the balcony of the Ecuador embassy in London’s exclusive Knightsbridge, for all the world like an Eva Peron of the ether. Instead of the adoring multitude, however, all he addressed was a few bedraggled if noisy supporters, scores of police officers trying both to stop a riot and protect him from being shot, and phalanxes of the world’s media delighted by a dramatic story in the August silly-season.
Gary Slapper, the Times: “He got off to a bad start. It was an explicit precondition of his being granted asylum by Ecuador that he did not use his status within the embassy to make political speeches. So technically his outrageous address denied him the right to be on the balcony from which he spoke.
South American leaders offer support to Ecuador after UK threats.