It was five years ago this month that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, having jumped bail, and clearly opposed to the idea of being extradited to Sweden, sought refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in Knightsbridge. And on this fifth anniversary of his confinement, The Great Man wants the world to know that he is not a happy bunny. Moreover, the years spent indoors have not confined the size of his ego.
Assange has been railing against the press, and indeed any form of mainstream media, but in between the exhibitions of petulance, there is the occasional hint at where his real sympathies lie, and an equal hint at why he exasperated journalists like former Guardian man Nick Davies, an exceptionally patient soul whose patience was routinely exhausted by the man with whom he had been tasked to liaise.
He’s been doing some research - about Himself. So he’s able to take to Twitter and tell “Did you know that 'journalists' are so cretinous they have launched 420k pages saying I live in a 'cupboard' and 261k in a ‘basement’?" At least they haven’t forgotten him - only one thing worse than being talked about, and all that. But do go on. “What is the insecurity that drives this unprofessionalism? Imagining me stuffed in a cupboard soothes the pain. But what pain?” So he’s not living in a cupboard. And we should not diss his mates.
Who might they be? We do not have to wait long to find out. “Self-comforting by talking about Putin being short is surely an equivalent. I'm 6'2 (188cm) yet the cupboard snowflakes always avoid ‘tall’”. Don’t diss his pal Vlad, right? And “Constant references to Trump's ‘tiny hands’ are another pervasive example of reducing psychological threat through scale distortion”. Don’t diss The Combover Crybaby either.
We also get to discover which media outlets Assange hates. “Here's an anti-Syrian government propaganda account+site impersonating the UN and spreading fake CNN attack stories”. CNN. Just like Trump. “Twitter's increasing censorship points to the future: each person will live in an undetectable filterverse of one”. That’s a new one.
But predictable, given the blue tick is missing. Also, the Guardian is rotten and nasty. “After fellating UK spies and HSBC for years has the ‘Guardian’ (of what exactly is not clear--staff perks?) moved onto Chinese advertisers?” Davies and his then editor Alan Rusbridger may allow themselves a wry smile. And his immediate fears? “Senators try to force Trump to declare @WikiLeaks a ‘non-state’ spy service”. The CIA is out to get him!
Give us all a laugh and grass this clown up
Of course, Julian Assange could help himself and his situation significantly by coming clean on whether or not he is part of the Trump-Russia connection. That is something on which he is not so forthcoming. Why did Nigel “Thirsty” Farage come to visit? And why doesn’t he quit farting around, accept the Swedish authorities are acting legitimately, and let justice take its course? He’s not going anywhere else any time soon.
In any case, WikiLeaks has become devalued of late, and with him holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy, that situation will only get worse. As will the number of hacks suggesting he’s living out of a cupboard. He wants to stop all that, he has to come out.
Otherwise, the only way the stories will dry up is when the world forgets him. And that’s a worrying prospect for such an ocean-going ego. Decisions, decisions.