Who would have thought that even after more than a year since I left the wikileaks-forum.com as a member (greekemmy) and as a mod (Green) due to the owner turning anti-WikiLeaks, I would still be an interest to him and his team to bully and intimidate.
The images below speak volumes of the two different ‘artists’ conflicting objectives.
In the first image, the artist is me :-). It is a picture I took of myself outside UK’s Supreme Court after handing out leaflets in support of WikiLeaks / Julian Assange. I tweeted it on the 13th of June 2012 via @greekemmy.
The message in the poster “I am not afraid to make up my own mind” was a campaign message organised by a small group of individuals momentarily under the anarchically self proclaimed banner of UKFoWL (UK Friends of WikiLeaks). The beautiful poster was designed by a wonderful Somerset Bean whose graphic designs delight many an activist of Human Rights causes including Freedom of Information fighters and war resisters, truth tellers and whistleblowers, courageous publishers and victims of unlawful imprisonment. The solidarity campaign was designed to ‘stand up and be counted’ in support of WikiLeaks and Julian Assange in their legal and political troubles. The message promotes one to look at the facts of the case, make their own mind about it. If he/she wants to show their support they then take a picture of themselves with the poster and put it on line, in a website as well as sharing it in social media.
A beautiful initiative I thought at the time, encouraging independent thought, research of facts and showing solidarity. It was also creating a community of individuals unafraid to make a stand for a commonly shared cause, the support of WikiLeaks the publishers and their much persecuted Editor Julian Assange. Let’s remember that time, when the Supreme Court had passed a judgement on the 30th of May of that year that the European Arrest Warrant was valid and therefore Extradition should go ahead but left a window of opportunity to examine the possibility of an Appeal. On the 13th of June we were still expecting the judgment regarding a request to re-open his appeal. It was this decision to reject the re-opening of the appeal and the authorities’ actions during the days immediately after, that led Julian Assange seek refuge in the Ecuadorian Embassy. A early arrest that was planned by the police would have disallowed further steps been taken to protect his Human Rights and his ability to carry out his work.
This picture therefore is not just any odd photo of myself, it is a political act, made consciously at a time when the controversy over JA’s Court appearances in the UK was running high and his after court statements were making the headlines. It was also the time when people often hid their face behind a mask identifying themselves with Anonymous or in genuine fear of being identified by an employer or be caught in the tide of established interests reacting against the radical publishing work of WikiLeaks. I had expected others to join the leafletting, after all, several had actively participated on line in formulating the flyer’s content, but on the actual day others were busy and I found myself with the entire Supreme Court entrance to myself. It was a wonderful experience interacting with the various passers by especially as it was a Wednesday morning and in the area Members of Parliament and their aides where flocking in for the 12 o’clock Prime Minister’s Question Time. Furthermore, being a place of the Law, all kinds of interesting costumed people paraded in wigs and cloaks and frilly shirts enough to entertain any period drama audience that enjoy neo-gothic architecture backgrounds. So, Lo and behold amongst the colourful and friendly tourists, the working clerks, silent clogs of authority, the road sweepers, you came across some actors of power that could not resist sniffing about my modest leaflets searching for their area of interest…politics and the law, keen to drum down their opinions. I also re-call a security incident, a potential bomb on Great George Street and the arrival of police, cording off the Supreme Court area as well as Police vehicles blocking the roads to stop traffic around Parliament Square and evacuating people away from the area. What strong beautiful memories this photo brings to my mind.
The artist in the second image is a persona cloaked in international mystery going by the twitter name (currently) of Saming Towden @T23Tm23 (Manning Snowden for those who need to be told). You will find his tweet archived here: archive.is/wZFS3 (https://twitter.com/T23Tm23/status/383281605055238144) . Many are his names, many are his talents, and he will be thrilled that finally he has my full attention albeit for about the duration of writing this post. In the second image, he has taken great trouble to alter the message on my poster to say the exact opposite of the true message. Very telling as this is the entire purpose of his existence: to pretend to be one thing when, in fact, he is another. As a true creature of the place he sprang up from: (The post-“Official” wikileaks-forum) he pretends to support WikiLeaks but in fact he undermines them. His entire purpose to subvert by lying, just as he does with my image. He manufactures a lie but done so expertly, only people ‘in the know’ understand it as such. If he is to point someone to his lie and say “Look at her, what on Earth is she saying… how ridiculous!” the passer by may readily agree, as a glance would be all that it takes to determine the hilarity of the image. So, not only he has manufactured a believable lie by twisting the truth just enough to keep the story credible, he also has made it a product, by sharing it and pointing at it and laughing at it and asking others to laugh at it and share it and point at it. A tool of bullying. People who do not know me, the ninety nine point nine, nine, nine, nine percent of our community, grain of sand that I am, would have no clue about the falsehood that he has created. But this pattern I have seen before. It was readily practiced by the owner of the WLForum. Every mod/admin/member that left the forum whilst under his care, left under a cloud of his creation and I have noticed this pattern was a tool of control for the ones that remained behind. So, his role is to manufacture believable lies, and here, you have an elegant proof of it.
There is another message that the artist tries to pass, this time to those ‘in the know’. The little pink rabbit is the Avatar of another supporter. Mark has made him to be his arch enemy. The sentence ‘I am afraid to make up my own mind’ that he has manufactured, in this context implies that since I cannot make my own mind up, I am guided by this little pink rabbit that he so much hates 🙂 But this is such an obvious divisive technique I will not bother analysing it, further than to say that there is a community of equals outside the Forum’s owner world of dominance, and it is a far more enjoyable one.
There is such pleasure to be had when you act freely and trying to do the right thing as far as your ability allows you without being imposed on.