Britain, home of the Magna Carta, has long been transformed into an affront to civil liberties. It has surveillance cameras nearly everywhere, they are considering monitoring travel with automatic recording of license plates, and they are moving toward recording street conversations. British libel laws have long been the embarassment of the “free world” as they facilitate continual suppression of critical speech, not just there, but around the world. Preventive detention is institutionalized. And, now, secret court gag orders are used to protect the wealth and powerful from scrutiny.History teches us that freedom
Wikileaks has just issued a press release/editorial on these affronts to freedom and human dignity:
WIKILEAKS PRESS RELEASE / EDITORIAL
Wed Dec 24 19:19:54 GMT 2008
For Immediate release.
“UK undermines core Western values”
British courts continue to disgrace Enlightenment values.
This month saw a secret UK court hearing, with secret participants, produce a secret order to secretly gag the population, the terms of which are secret and the revelation of which is punishable by upto 15 years of imprisonment. How many of these orders exist is unknowable–we glimpse at the severity of the problem only when the orders are violated.
Secret gag actions are usually associated with the likes of Saudi-Arabia, China or North Korea. Closed-door justice for the wealthy emasculates the UK population and grants succor to repressive regimes across the globe who can look to the UK for validation.
It is time these orders were treated with the contempt they deserve.
Wikileaks previously released the gag order for the Northern Rock bank collapse, now we release the secret gag order made by High Court Justice Tugendhat on Dec 15, 2008, aimed at covering up an email leak from the British establishment. The secret order was first targeted at UK newspapers, but our copy was destined for the UK Parliamentary blogger ‘Guido Fawkes’, editor of ‘order-order.com’.
The summary states:
1. The identities of the Applicants/Claimants must remain confidential.
2. The fact of the existence of the Orders must remain confidential.
3. The terms of the Orders must remain confidential.
The order concerns emails from Zac Goldsmith, a noted 2005 Conservative party recruit, and social climber sibling Jemima Khan. Both are hairs to the late billionaire financier Sir James Goldsmith. Needless to say there are no teachers, small business owners or technicians being granted secret media gag orders in the UK.
The order states that anyone who knows of the order must obey it, so plaintiff lawyers Carter Ruck have served the order on media outlets across the British Isles.
Britain is an increasingly dangerous Western disgrace, but you won’t hear about it in the British press. The examples needed to elucidate just how the country is failing can not be mentioned, accelerating its decline.
In the last five years Britain has become the the world’s largest arms exporter, the preferred home of Russian and middle-eastern oligarchs, the world center for “libel tourism” and, as far as we can tell, the Western capital of secret gag orders.
Only a week ago, on December 17, the High Court of London gave the go ahead for a libel tourism action against the New York Times.
The same day the Hon. Denis MacShane (Labour) with two MPs from other parties, told Westminster that UK courts had become a “Soviet-style organ of censorship”.
The UK has recently introduced a national Internet censorship scheme, a national ID card and is about to spend 12 billion pounds pushing the British population’s web-searches, emails, sms messages and telephone callings records through a central database run by its spy agency, GCHQ.
This month also saw British police go into Parliament, without a warrant, and rifle through the files of a senior member of the opposition, the Hon. Damian Green MP, who was alleged to have leaked trivial details about immigration policy to the press.
What’s left? The Gulag?
Will the British and the world press listen and react, before it is too late?
December 25th, 2008