For the third day in a row, @amnesty & 40 other legal observers, have been denied access to the technology that would allow them to observe the extradition hearing of @wikileaks founder #JulianAssange.

This was the letter we received yesterday.
In her letter, the judge expresses her "regret" at her decision to deny remote access to the proceedings to @amnesty but offers no reason for her decision

Instead, she sets out rules to ensure the court is #COVID19 safe

But remote access is FAR safer than practices I witnessed.
Telling legal observers - some of whom are from the European Parliament - that they have to compete with the public for one of 8 gallery seats results in a scrum of people at the doorway to the court.

There was no distancing & even court officials & police weren't wearing masks. ImageImage
Today, two activists joined the queue for the public gallery in the early hours of the morning in order to give their spaces to @RSF_en observers.

Despite this, the court has so far refused them entry as they're awaiting some "VIPs” who haven't turned up.
End of Day 3. “We were able to monitor about 45 minutes of Prof Paul Rogers’ testimony, in which he spoke of his belief that the US case against #Assange is politically motivated.” @rebecca_vincent @RSF_inter. #JulianAssange #AssangeCase #AssangeHearing
“Sitting 20 feet away from #JulianAssange", I was struck by how much of a shadow of his former self he had become."

For the fourth consecutive day, @amnesty & other fair trial monitors, have been refused access to the proceedings in the #Assange hearing.…
I met #JulianAssange briefly when he spoke at the Occupy London camp outside St Paul’s Cathedral in 2011

It was an extraordinary time

Occupy Wall St was spreading across the US & the Arab Spring was sweeping N. Africa / Middle East

It was a time when anything seemed possible. ImageImageImageImage
Outside the Old Bailey, #Assange's hearing has been like a carnival. Inside the courtroom, it's been a circus!

Hearing adjourned til Monday due to a #COVID19 scare with husband of one of the US lawyers coming down with Covid-like symptoms.
CARNIVAL: “We have a nice time here. But remember: carnivals come cheap. What matters is the day after.” Slavo Žižek

COURT: “Wherever he went, he’d bring the circus with him. But now - stood before the hanging judge - Moody longed for fewer clowns: for solemnity.“ Emerson Warner
The US Dept of Justice is reportedly obstructing a Spanish High Court request for assistance in its investigation into whether the Spanish company, UC Global & its owner, that spied on #JulianAssange, collaborated with the CIA. (@elpaisinenglish) #Assange…
Campaigns Director for @RSF_inter, @rebecca_vincent, gives an overview of proceedings so far at #Assange’s extradition hearing. Severe restrictions imposed on trial observers meant RSF is the only NGO that gained access to @wikileaks publisher’s hearing.
We’ve just had news that the US junior counsel’s #COVID19 test has come back negative and #Assange’s extradition hearing will therefore continue on Monday.

The hearing was halted on Thursday due to a #COVID scare. #JulianAssange #Assangecase #DontExtraditeAssange #BREAKING

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More from @StefSimanowitz

16 Oct
In the mid-20th century, satellites helped us determine the exact circumference of the Earth: 40,030km

But 2000+ years earlier, Eratosthenes
a Greek mathematician, came up with nearly the exact same figure using two sticks & his brain

Carl Sagan explains
I once asked “how is it that all scientists aren’t mystics, all cosmologists not poets?”

Carl Sagan was both of these

This passage - Pale Blue Dot - was inspired by the photo of Earth taken in 1990, by the Voyager 1 from a distance of about 6 billion km.
Scientists are like mystics in that they can travel in time explaining the past, seeing into the future

In this 1974 interview, Arthur Clarke makes precise predictions about the Internet & PC

And below James Burke predicts the rise of #CambridgeAnalytica
Read 6 tweets
12 Oct
1/. #BREAKING #COVID NEWSFLASH: The “official scientific advisers" behind the #HerdImmunityScandal were in reality were political advisors, appointed by politicians, who's advice had little or no basis in science (e.g. “Dr” David Halpern who has a doctorate in Political Science)
2/. Today’s findings are not new

The truth has been in plain sight from the start

We didn’t need #Cummings to tell us

Indeed, @Dominic2306 ‘revelations’ raised far more questions than answers

It was clear that #HerdImmunity was the strategy & they didn’t “pivot away” from it
3/. Every epidemiologist, virologist or public health expert will tell you that #HerdImmunity is an “outcome” NEVER a “strategy”

Without a vaccine it would involve sacrificing the vulnerable in vast numbers

This “strategy” would also clearly damage the economy

So why do it?👇
Read 12 tweets
10 Oct
As @BorisJohnson & @carrielbjohnson jet off to the Costa del Sol, @Coldwar_Steve has produced this

The man loading the boot is Tory donor David Ross, who allegedly paid for the PM’s Mustique holiday in 2019

Coldwar Steve is an important artist: the John Heartfield of our times Image
The truth is powerful
It’s why they try & hide it
Or distract from it
Or silence it

Like these women in Belarus striking fear into a bunch of secret policemen just by pulling off their balaclavas, artists can also unmask truths

Tyranny thrives in secrecy
You may not have heard of John Heartfield but his work will be familiar

He was sounding the alarm about the Nazi’s from the late 1920’s using humour to make visible their lies

He’s relevant today

Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it.
Read 5 tweets
5 Oct
“The most important thing is that we’re allowed to think about alternatives” (Žižek)

Ten years ago I joined @OccupyWallSt

Occupy’s incredible positive energy was underpinned by a cohesive sense of anger at corporate greed, govt mismanagement & inequality…
“This is the most hopeful I’ve felt for a long time.”

For those involved those early stages of Occupy Wall St in Zuccotti Park - nicknamed Liberty Plaza - the mood was intoxicating & contagious

But as Žižek warned: “Remember carnivals come cheap. What matters is the day after”.
Over the next month, @OccupyWallSt spread across the US attracting celebrity & political support including from @JoeBiden, @SpeakerPelosi, & @algore

Occupy also crossed the Atlantic popping up outside St Paul’s Cathedral, just after I got home to London.…
Read 6 tweets
3 Oct
1/. #PandoraPapers reveal secret dealings of 330+ politicians & officials - including 35 current & former heads of state & govt

Exposé is based on a leaked dataset of 11.9 million files from all over the world & include disclosures about Tory party donors…
2/. “The tax system is a haven of scams, perks, City deals and profits" (#TonyBlair 1994)

The #PandoraPapers reveal the Blair’s bought an offshore firm that owned the £6.5m house they were buying so did not have to pay £312,000 in stamp duty @BBCPanorama…
3/. The #PandoraPapers expose offshore accounts of world leaders, billionaires, oligarchs & criminals

It should lead to a crackdown on tax loopholes & money laundering...but we’ve been here before

What was the impact of #PanamaPapers & #ParadisePapers?
Read 5 tweets
28 Sep
“In the mid-1960s, I was a young NHS houseman in London specializing in obstetrics. One day I was called to A&E / ER to see a young woman who was bleeding...”

@Newsweek piece by retired doctor on how things were when abortion was illegal in the UK.
#AbortionBan #Texas #SanMarino
On Sunday, #SanMarino joined 50+ countries that have improved access to abortion in the past 25 years

It was decriminalised in South Korea (2021), Argentina (2020), Ireland (2019)

But other places - e.g. #Poland & #Texas - are swimming against the tide.
Women & girls pay a high price for restrictions on abortion. They pay with their health, their well-being & even with their lives

Last January, abortion in #Poland - already only available to women in extreme circumstances - was further restricted.
Read 8 tweets

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