Ögmundur Jónasson is a rare person indeed – a politician (from Iceland) who has integrity.
He has served as a member of the Icelandic Parliament, since 1995. He is currently the Chairman of the Parliament’s Constitutional and Supervisory Committee and is a representative to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.
When the American FBI came to Iceland looking for help in order to trap Julian Assange back in 2011, Minister Jonasson smelt a rat. In June 2011, US authorities made some approaches to the Icelandic government indicating they had knowledge of hackers wanting to destroy software systems in Iceland. Jonasson was a minister at the time. The Americans offered to help Iceland but Jonasson for one, was suspicious of their motives. He was well aware that a helping hand might easily become a manipulating hand.
Later in August, the Americans sent a planeload of FBI agents to Iceland seeking cooperation in what was understood as an operation to frame Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, in order to stop his embarrassing leaks of the extent of America’s abhorent behaviour.
Since the FBI had not been authorised by the Icelandic authorities to carry out police work in Iceland and since a crack-down on WikiLeaks was not on his ministerial agenda, Jonasson ordered that all Icelandic cooperation with them be promptly terminated.
He also made it clear to the FBI that they should cease all activities in Iceland immediately.
“If I had to take sides with either WikiLeaks or the FBI or CIA, I would have no difficulty in choosing: I would be on the side of WikiLeaks”Icelandic Minister Ogmundur Jonasson
It was also made clear to the Amercans that they were to leave the country. They were unable to get permission to operate in Iceland as police agents, but it is believed that they went to other countries, at least to Denmark.
Minister Jonasson comments,
“The role played by whistleblowers could be seen as public service. We owe a lot to Chelsea Manning. We owe a lot to Edward Snowden. We owe a lot to Julian Assange. We owe a lot to WikiLeaks. It’s not only about the Iraqi war and other illegal (American) military aggression and immoral power-political manoeuvres, but it’s also about the recent international trade agreements TISA, TTIP and CETA.”
“By (considering) granting Snowden asylum, Iceland would be paying tribute to democracy, to openness and to all the whistleblowers of the world.”Icelandic Minister Jonasson
Who were the people giving us insight into the underhanded and behind-closed-doors international trade negotiations such as TTIP and CETA? Who told us about the United States tapping the private telephones of German, French and other world leaders in order to know their negotiating strategies before entering into formal talks?
Who highlighted to us the degree of treachery being fomented by Washington against even its friends and allies?
It was WikiLeaks who revealed how Washington was secretly spying on its friends to advance America’s own interests.
Ögmundur Jónasson comments,
“The stakes are high in these trade negotiations. This is not just about trade, it is about giving international capital access to the infrastructure of our societies. We are talking about handing over the very heart of democracy.
Before meeting security challenges, we must ask why we are facing these challenges. And in seeking the answer we should get hold of some useful working tools: I suggest a mirror.
The rich part of the world should start by looking at its own reflection and asking what it is doing to itself. In other words, it should ask, what is my role? Could it be that the poor parts of the world, the ostracised, the uprooted and unwelcome immigrants, the unemployed, see the rich and the powerful, the military machines of state power, as the real security challenge to their lives?
If this is the case, the answer to security threats would be to remove the conditions that make people feel threatened. And then we would need more social justice, more equality in society, more security. We must analyse why it is that millions of people leave their homes against their will and flock to the rich parts of the world.”
“Who is the terrorist: the one who is killed by a drone or the one who kills with the help of a drone?”Icelandic Minister Jonasson
“In South East Turkey, 450,000 Kurds are on the move, uprooted from their homes after longstanding curfews by Turkish authorities. These people will end up as asylum seekers. And who is the terrorist: the one who is killed by a drone or the one who kills with the help of a drone?
Let us start by using the mirror, holding it up to our own faces and asking all these questions”
What a breath of fresh air this man is!
He highlights the most basic tool that every nation, and indeed, every citizen should employ in its dealings with the world – a mirror.
Share his views with your address book friends – just to let people know there are genuine leaders of integrity in the world who need our support.
And FREE JULIAN ASSANGE !