I’m Michael Ratner; I’m from the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York. We represent WikiLeaks and Julian Assange; and we’re here in part because we want to support alleged sources for WikiLeaks. Jeremy Hammond is an alleged source of some of the most valuable documents out there on the Internet: five million Stratfor emails, posted on Wikileaks.
I’m here because I support truth-tellers. I support truth-tellers like Bradley Manning; I support truth-tellers like Jeremy Hammond and Julian Assange. And right now we’re at a point in this government where they are hitting people with sledgehammers for telling the truth because they don’t want government and corporate corruption, hypocrisy and criminality coming out. And just yesterday, our wonderful Attorney General announced a new policy—a tougher policy—one he said in which “we’re gonna make truth-tellers—getting them—a priority” And the question I have is: “how much of a priority more do they want to make it?” They already killed Aaron Swartz; Jeremy Hammond is facing 39 years to life; Bradley Manning: life imprisonment; and Julian Assange—if they ever get him out of that embassy and into a prison here, will face the same. So I ask the government: “what do they want to do, put ’em up against the wall and just shoot the guys?” I mean it’s an outrageous suppression of truth, and the struggle that’s going on in this country right now is whether we’re gonna have a transparent government, and corporations that are transparent, or are we gonna continue dirty tricks, hypocrisy and secrecy? And that’s what this case, that’s what Jeremy Hammond’s case is about.
I’m also here because I’m seeing unroll in front of me a travesty of justice: a case in which government informants were in on the case, in which the government itself bought the computer, entrapping the people involved in the case. I’m here because Jeremy Hammond did not get bail which he absolutely should have had; I’m here because today, as Heidi (NLG) and others have said, we’re seeing a conflict of interest by the judge. Judge Loretta Preska wakes up every morning with someone whose email was hacked in the Stratfor emails. This is a fair judge? Not at all.
I’m here because I stand for a transparent government, transparent corporations and privacy for all of us. We are on the verge of a major struggle in this country, and this case is critical to how we go forward: will we have a democracy or will we continue to have a government that suppresses the truth and its own criminality?
So again, thank you all for being here with us to support Jeremy Hammond. [raises his left fist in salute] Free Jeremy!