Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters discusses his fight to help Australian editor, publisher, activist and WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, with Tucker on ‘Tucker Carlson Tonight.’
Tucker Carlson: It’s been a year now since Julian Assange was taken from the Ecuadorian Embassy in Britain. Now he is facing extradition charges to this country to face espionage charges based on his were containing in publishing secret documents. Rodger Waters co-founded the group Pink Floyd. He’s been fighting to prevent Assange’s extradition you spoke with us to explain why.
Explain, I know you’ve been following it very closely if you would, what exactly these charges are about and why he’s being charged for, what sounds like, the things that journalist do everyday.
Roger Waters: I can only assume that he’s being charged. It’s a bit like hanging a magpie on a hedge. I think he’s warning to other journalists who might write, not write stories, because this is publish stories that the powers-that-be do not want to be published and so, it’s a way of warning off other journalists in the future and tell them, don’t do this or we might lock you up in prison 175 years even though nothing that you have done is illegal. I mean . . .
Tucker Carlson: So he’s being, yes, so I’m just wondering the reaction to this is surprising to me. It’s broken down along political lines to some extent, but not entirely. But, the New York Times, for example, has a long history, usually considered a noble history, of publishing secret government documents, most famously the Pentagon papers in the early 1970s during Vietnam. Why haven’t papers like the New York Times come to Julian Assange’s defense?
Roger Waters: Well, you would have to, the papers, you would have to ask the papers.
Tucker Carlson: Yes.
Roger Waters: I was wondering if you were going to ask why hasn’t the DOG, excuse me, decided, DOJ decide to prosecute the New York Times and the Manchester Guardian and the Washington Post who all publish the same information the WikiLeaks did. Why is it that they picked out Julian Assange as an example to hang in the hedge and not those other papers. And its and interesting . . .
Tucker Carlson: That is a fascinating question.
Roger Waters: Well, thank you. There are a lot more fascinating questions.
Tucker Carlson: But that one right there. So you’re, just to be clear. Those newspapers publish the information that he’s facing a hundred and seventy years for disseminating.
Roger Waters: The absolutely did. And the Guardian newspaper, I have to say, two of the journalist who publish the same information that the Julian did on Wikileaks, actually have exposed those names and brought people into danger because they didn’t, they didn’t concentrate on their work and redact everything as Julian did. Julian, Julian never put anyone in any danger and the CIA have owned up to this quit recently. So that story that was spread that he put lives in danger and so on is absolute nonsense, as all the other smear stories that were told about Julian over the last six or seven years. And he was quite right to go to the Ecuadorian Embassy for a asylum and to not go to Sweden because we’ve learned that the Swedes would have been extradited him, and there is not a hope in Hell the Julian Assange would get a fair trial in the Eastern District Washington DC. I mean it because. Sorry go on.
Tucker Carlson: I’m just wondering how you got so informed on this and so involved in it?
Roger Waters: First of all I was just starting a large tour when the collateral murder video came out and I included it in my talk, so I really should be if, if he is guilty, so am I, I should be standing in the dark with him. They should be trying to, well they wouldn’t have to extradite me I’m in New York City. But, every single night of the world tour that that went on for for 3 years, that video of that clip from, you know, the young Americans airman killing those unarmed people and those two Reuters cameraman in the street. And it, so that, it was published in many, many other places, and quite rightly, and it has actually been of great value I think to all of us. I’m certain that you believe in freedom of the press and freedom of speech and you believe in the first . . .
Tucker Carlson: Of Course
Roger Waters: Well I’m not sure that everybody that walks in the corridors of power does, because if they did, they would not be trying to extradite Julian Assange, Julian Assange from London. With this kangaroo court. You know they that have been locked up in a bullet proof glass cage in the highest security prison that there is in the United Kingdom, banged up for 23 hours a day in solitary confinement, and the only crime that he is being, that he is being charged with and found guilty of is a minor bail infraction, It’s a misdemeanor. It’s not even what you guys would call a felony. So its pretty bizarre.
Tucker Carlson: So let me just, so that leads to my final question which in hanging a lot of people, people’s minds are the sexual assault, I think, charges that we read so much about that Assange was facing. What ever happened to those?
Roger Waters: There weren’t any. They never happened. Neither of the women involved accused him of rape ever. This was a concoction of of the a, somewhere in between the Swedish police and the Swedish Judiciary this story was allowed to develop into a scape and and it was blown out of, not out of all proportion, it was completely invented by mainstream media for whatever their motivations might be. All the smearing story about Julian Assange. All the stuff about his cat and his personal habits and it, it was completely made up. If you look into Neil Smelser who is the Special Rapporteur for Torture from the United Nations, who interviewed Julian at some length and has released a really interesting report on all of that. Actually, I saw him doing an interview the other day where he said that he was reluctant to get involved to the beginning because he read all the stories until he looked into it and it was all absolute nonsense. And when he wrote his report he tried to get it published in the New York Times and the Washington Post in the London times and the Guardian and and and. Nobody would publish it, not a single word of it.
Tucker Carlson: Right. I’m not surprised.
Roger Waters: There’s been a blanket . . . this is why, this is why, Tucker, its so amazing. Its not amazing, its so great that you’ve got me on and that we’re even able to the air the subject at all. Because there is, it’s almost like what in England we would call D note, there’s a, you can’t talk about it. We’ve made up her mind . . .
Tucker Carlson: I’m against, I’m against, I’m against things you can’t talk about. I’m for talking about things other than, you’re not getting, your not getting rich from doing this so I appreciate it. Roger Waters, thank you for that.
Roger Waters: Thank you very much.