by UnHerd Staff
Monday, 8
August 2022
Video
15:00

His wife’s plea: The case for Julian Assange

Lawyer Stella Moris discusses her husband's liberty and the free internet
by UnHerd Staff

The case of Julian Assange, the Wikileaks founder who published huge troves of sensitive government documents and classified military logs, has been going on for over a decade. Assange has been under house arrest, hidden from extradition inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London and since 2019 has been held in Belmarsh prison. 

During that time, he has married and had two children with a lawyer called Stella Moris. Moris first met Assange as a researcher on his case and they were forced to conduct their relationship under close surveillance. Moris’ fears for her husband are not only personal but philosophical, she wonders what precedent Assange’s case will set for press freedom.

Will Assange be remembered as a pioneer of the free internet or as one of its victims?

With his extradition case looming, UnHerd’s Freddie Sayers met Stella Moris to hear her case for her husband, Julian Assange.

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R Wright
R Wright
1 month ago

History will vindicate Julian Assange, and condemn the American military-industrial complex and its useful idiots that destroyed him.

carrie brambl
carrie brambl
1 month ago
Reply to  R Wright

It already has. Nils Melzer’s book The Trial of Julian Assange will remain the historical record.

carrie brambl
carrie brambl
1 month ago

Freddie. If you want a really impartial interview then ask the UN Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer to come on and talk about the trial of Julian Assange and the implications for human rights, sovereignty, the rule of law and press freedom. None of Melzer’s critics have even tried to challenge his accusations and assessment of facts, maybe you could give it a go. My view is that Stella Assange was impeccable and stuck to relevant facts. In the mean time try reading Nils Melzer’s new book The Trial of Julian Assange also available for free trial on audible. That would be good prep.

Elyse Gilbert
Elyse Gilbert
1 month ago
Reply to  carrie brambl

Not to be rude to Freddie… but he should’ve read the book or researched the case before he interviewed Stella. Anyone who has followed Julian Assange and WikiLeaks knows the details about the draconian Espionage Act, the Espionage ‘Court’, the judge in THAT court, the jury in that court and the extremely vindictive political nature of this case headed by the US.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
1 month ago
Reply to  Elyse Gilbert

Yes, shockingly naive and complacent questioning by Freddie, as I stress on the YouTube release of this video.
At one point he even says ‘the Americans are not the Chinese’!!!??? As if there is any difference between any of these people and their evil and corrupt administrations.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
1 month ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

The FBI raided Trump’s house the day after I wrote this, which would appear to prove my point. Wake up Freddie!

Paul Walsh
Paul Walsh
1 month ago

I don’t know how well read Freddie is about the subject. For someone like me I found it quite informative. He asked the obvious questions that someone ill informed like me might ask. I thought Stella was allowed to put her case and she did so very well. In simple terms, she is saying Julian is a journalist reporting leaks from someone who has signed the official secrets act. They may be liable to prosecution but should a journalist be? She also seems to be saying that everything that he published was co-published with established media outlets. I guess I was left wondering why he should be singled out. Maybe Freddie can interview someone who has an opposing view, but as things stand she has won me over.

carrie brambl
carrie brambl
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul Walsh

Good points. Yes I did also consider that he gave Stella a chance to confront views that some people in the public have but he also changed the topic when she was still answering his question. The thing with this case though is that there does not seem to be two credible sides. You would be better placed to read the UN Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer’s new book The Trial of Julian Assange. Also available with a free trial on audible if you are not a reader. Melzer came to the case with a bias against Assange that he learned from smears spread about Assange. His official investigation revealed a shocking degree of lawlessness on the part of the the US, UK, Ecuador and Sweden governments in order to politically persecute one individual. You could also read an older article titled “a murderous system is being created before our eyes” in the Swiss paper Republik for a starter.

Neven Curlin
Neven Curlin
1 month ago

Freddie Sayers seems to think that playing devil’s advocate makes him a good journalist, but one can overdo it. He seems to be overdoing it most in clear-cut cases such as this one that ironically affects his profession so much. At some point, I found it pretty disgusting to watch, to be frank. And at the end, Freddie couldn’t stress enough that Stella Morris was very, very subjective.

Unherd started out nicely, but it’s going the route of The Intercept. If so, Freddie Sayers is probably going to be well-rewarded. It has been painful and disappointing to witness the process.

Neven Curlin
Neven Curlin
1 month ago
Reply to  Neven Curlin

I was just discussing this with my wife and she hit the nail on the head: Freddie Sayers is a coward.

0 0
0 0
1 month ago
Reply to  Neven Curlin

What’s journalism these days?
How many of UNHERD or any journalist will do what Assange did? Shouldn’t you stick together for the sake of journalism that is becoming just one story everywhere or else ends up like Assange story or worse?

Klaus Kroy
Klaus Kroy
1 month ago

How can a normally superb interviewer conduct (and frame) such an important interview with such a great person so poorly? I really don’t know where to start… maybe with Immanuel Kant: “Alle auf das Recht anderer Menschen bezogene Handlungen, deren Maxime sich nicht mit der Publizität verträgt, sind unrecht.” Luckily, Stella Assange was indeed impeccable.

Bill Anderson
Bill Anderson
13 days ago
Reply to  Klaus Kroy

Translation to save others looking;
Immanuel Kant: “All actions related to the rights of other people whose maxim is not compatible with publicity are wrong.”

Last edited 13 days ago by Bill Anderson
Fiona Craig
Fiona Craig
1 month ago

Disappointed with Freddie’s naive questions, which fortunately elicited considered, informative and astute answers from Stella, which only increased my admiration for her and Julian.

Last edited 1 month ago by Fiona Craig
Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 month ago

From the Sonnets, Mostly Bristolian, by Richard Craven
Sonnet 151
He’s to be scoped, the rapey narcissist,
athwart on camp-bed with a cigarette,
recalling ruefully his Swedish tryst.
It’s pretty gamey in that oubliette,
and latterly his visitors are few
and low status: just junior attachés
and interns. No more television crews
now camp beneath his balcony; that craze
of troubadour paying court to caytiff king
has passed. Now Julian’s the apostate,
there’ll be an end of virtue-signalling.
Let Cumberbatch and Gaga find new mates;
the creep will linger like a nasty smell
inside his Ecuadorian hotel.

M. Waugh
M. Waugh
1 month ago

I’m surprised at the comments. If anything, Mr Sayers was too kind to Ms Moris’s assertions. Julian Assange refused to answer a legitimate EU warrant issued to question him in Sweden in respect of allegations of sexual assaults committed in Sweden. It’s my recollection that two women made the allegations. Assange refused to comply with the warrant and orders were made by an English court requiring Assange to return to Sweden in conformity with the warrant. Assange then fled into the Ecuadorian embassy. Fleeing a warrant is usually strong evidence of guilt. The warrant itself lapsed after some period of time. Assange remained in the embassy because he had committed the offence of fleeing the warrant. Regardless of the merits of his publishing highly classified US secrets (and possibly conspiring with Chelsea Manning to that end, and possibly heedless of the welfare of US contacts in totalitarian regimes), Assange appears to regard himself as above the laws that apply in democratic western nations be they Swedish, British, or American.

Bill Anderson
Bill Anderson
13 days ago
Reply to  M. Waugh

Wasn’t it later proven that the assault charges were trumped up in Sweden? That being the case then Julian Assange wasn’t throwing himself to the obvious intentions of Sweden to extradite him under pressure from the U.S. and rightly so! The proof of the U.S’s scapegoating of Assange is everywhere to see so why aren’t they going after the others who published it? They can’t get at Chelsea Manning so they want to make a seriously severe example of Julian Assange in hopes of cowing other honest journalists, which seems to be working for them as there is no obvious honest journalism now, just propagandists who are selling their souls to the UK/US war-mongers who won’t have any scrutiny of their actions.

Last edited 13 days ago by Bill Anderson
Preston Lennox
Preston Lennox
1 month ago

for me julian in publishing the documents and savaging the americans left him isolated. you see i read the 400 paragraph judgment from westminster magistrates court. may i suggest others do so too. espionage is about conversations and talking. not so much spying. albeit that is the traditional view. julian in his reporting named names. men and woman in different parts of the world. who directly were not involved in the released atrocities. call them agents. the judgment explains more. my view it is that aspect of what was done which led to his demise.

carrie brambl
carrie brambl
1 month ago
Reply to  Preston Lennox

Yes I read the judgement and many witness statements and followed the extradition trial which was all about grounds for extradition. The bar is not high. I also just finished reading UN Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer’s new book The Trial of Julian Assange. I highly recommend the latter as it’s claims remain unchallenged and I think will be the historical record.