Yesterday UK Judge Emma Arbuthnot upheld the arrest warrant on Julian Assange.
“I am not persuaded the warrant should be withdrawn,” she said.
In response, England’s Sir John Falstaff Society has held a news conference.
Mr. Assange was arrested by UK authorities in 2010 over alleged sexual impropriety and request for extradition by Sweden.
He was required to report to police daily and wear an ankle bracelet, which he did until 2012.
Then he broke conditions of his bail and sought refuge in the Ecuador Embassy in London.
Sweden gave up the case in 2017. Assange was never questioned. The women involved did not bring charges. There was no case.
Diplomatic status, granted by Ecuador, has not led to permission to leave the embassy, as the British court continues his condition on a technicality.
The seriousness of the threat that Assange, once returned to British custody, could be extradited to the US was not considered by the Arbuthnot court.
Why not choose extradition to the US? The possibility of indefinite imprisonment; hostile treatment.
On the UK technicality, Assange’s violation could be punished with a year in prison and a fine.
Enter The Sir John Falstaff Society.
This company maintains that the character Sir John Falstaff in Shakespeare’s Henry IV plays was an actual person who advised Shakespeare.
His descendant and current president of the society, also named Sir John Falstaff, commented on the Assange case yesterday.
“Indeed, let me presume to speak with, and add to, the words of my ancestor, Sir John Falstaff.
“Honour pricks me to speak, honour pricks me here and there.
“Yea, but what is honour? Is it not integrity and decency? No.
“Is it not the heart of a justice system? No.
“Does honour suggest need for balance, the weight of a crime versus punishment already endured more than five long years? No.
“Has he committed a serious crime? No. Has he committed any other crimes? No.
“Has he upset political powers by revealing sordid information to the public, which the public might want to know? Yea, and has offered mighty impertinence to boot!
“What is this word honour? Air.
“Who hath this honour? The British authorities? No. The American government pressuring? No.
“The prisoner himself? Doth he feel it? No. Doth he hear it? No. It is insensible then? Yea, to him, festering in lack of sunlight and air.
“But will it not live with the living? No. Why? Detraction from it is not allowed, yet distraction from it will abide.
“What use is this honour then? Why pretend with it?
“I thank Sir John and agree with him.
“Honour is a mere escutcheon, a noble cover on a hollow core, and I too will have none of it.
“Ah, but you say, the better part of valour is discretion? Well, certainly, when it comes to honour.
“Be discreet, pretend, puff yourself up, and there you will have honour!”