Julian Assange with associate, right-winger Israel Shamir
Further information is coming out about Julian Assange as a right-wing libertarian. This is not relevant to the allegations of rape against him, nor to opposing his being extradited to the US. However, it should give pause in considering the differences between the calls for “government transparency” and working class and socialist politics. See this article, for instance.
Also, according to this article, Assange remains close to Israel Shamir. Shamir is an open sexist, and apologist for dictators, who has written: “It is no coincidence that the enemies of Empire are all masculine males, be they Gaddafi, Castro, Chávez, Lukashenko, Putin – or Julian Assange. It appears the men have been targeted for elimination; the working ants need no sex.” This is the sort of appeal to machismo that is often used by fascists. Shamir is also an anti-semite who has associated with holocaust deniers. (Note: There is a world of difference between opposing Zionism and anti-Semitism. Shamir is an example of the latter.)
The workers’ movement and socialists have to go beyond simple calls for less government oppression. Without that, they can find themselves linked up with the racist, usually sexist, far-right, types like Shamir, Rand and Ron Paul, etc.