Wikileaks, Assange, and the Strange Swedish Accusations

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I am generally wary of mentioning a news development that I don't have any particular connection to, or angle on, or opportunity to offer new reporting about. The exception in this case is because the line of analysis I'll mention, if true, would be significant. It comes from a source whose judgment I've learned to respect over time. But the conspiratorial interpretation he suggests is one I usually resist, and I don't have the resources or time to go independently into the questions he has raised. So as an alert to a possibility that deserves consideration but that I can't prove myself, here goes:

It is worth reading in order the series of posts on the Fabius Maximus site -- from earliest to latest here, here, here, and here -- making the case that the "official" story of the rape accusations against Julian Assange of Wikileaks is too strange and coincidence-ridden to be easily believable. The first post in this series, more than a week ago, starts with a summary of his hypothesis: "The CIA used to overthrow governments.  Now they cannot even frame a rape charge against the leader of Wikileaks." Nothing is "proven" as of the latest update today; but individually and collectively, the posts do something most newspaper articles haven't. They put the whole story together and say: this part doesn't match that part, and this other part is extremely improbable, and if we're to believe the official version, then the following ten coincidences must all have gone the same way.

I do not know the truth here and am not in a position to dig into it myself. But if his suggestions prove to be true, they would have wide ramifications, and they are worth being aware of now. (Also, see this summary today by the Atlantic's Heather Horn.) So it becomes a test of which is harder to believe: That there was a conspiracy to frame Julian Assange? Or that there wasn't?

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James Fallows is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Carter's chief speechwriter. His latest book is China Airborne. More

James Fallows is based in Washington as a national correspondent for The Atlantic. He has worked for the magazine for nearly 30 years and in that time has also lived in Seattle, Berkeley, Austin, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, and Beijing. He was raised in Redlands, California, received his undergraduate degree in American history and literature from Harvard, and received a graduate degree in economics from Oxford as a Rhodes scholar. In addition to working for The Atlantic, he has spent two years as chief White House speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, two years as the editor of US News & World Report, and six months as a program designer at Microsoft. He is an instrument-rated private pilot. He is also now the chair in U.S. media at the U.S. Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, in Australia.

Fallows has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award five times and has won once; he has also won the American Book Award for nonfiction and a N.Y. Emmy award for the documentary series Doing Business in China. He was the founding chairman of the New America Foundation. His recent books Blind Into Baghdad (2006) and Postcards From Tomorrow Square (2009) are based on his writings for The Atlantic. His latest book is China Airborne. He is married to Deborah Fallows, author of the recent book Dreaming in Chinese. They have two married sons.

Fallows welcomes and frequently quotes from reader mail sent via the "Email" button below. Unless you specify otherwise, we consider any incoming mail available for possible quotation -- but not with the sender's real name unless you explicitly state that it may be used. If you are wondering why Fallows does not use a "Comments" field below his posts, please see previous explanations here and here.
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