Thursday, 16 August 2012

How Assange might escape

The good news for Julian Assange is that he's safe inside the Ecuadorian embassy, having been granted asylum there. The bad news for Julian Assange is that he's safe inside the Ecuadorian embassy, which is a fairly nondescript London flat. There will be no more Suffolk mansion, no more trips to Cambridge to deliver tales of his fight for truth and justice to rapt audiences , just four bare walls. Still, it's "freedom", of a sort. Unless the government wants to create a diplomatic incident and a very dangerous precedent, the sanctity of diplomatic property means that the writ even of a European Arrest Warrant does not run there.

But being Julian, even the prospect of a round-the-clock vigil by deluded supporters (one of whom told a BBC reporter that "there's no warrant, just allegations") won't make a long-term stay in Ecuador's modest London apartment a long-term solution. Short of coming out with his hands up begging to be taken to Sweden, how can he possibly extricate himself? Some have suggested that he might be smuggled out in a diplomatic bag. But the authorities would surely frustrate such a hackneyed and obvious deception. Here are five more possibilities that he might, even now, be considering...

1) The Face/Off option

Wearing a prosthetic mask, Assange disguises himself as the Ecuadorian ambassador and leaves Britain on a diplomatic passport.

2) The Mr Toad option

Disguised as a washerwoman, Assange slips boldly past oblivious police. Once free, he steals an aeroplane and, in a feat of derring-do, flies out of the reach of British justice and across the Atlantic

3) The Lazaraus option

Injected with a nerve toxin to simulate death, Assange is taken from the embassy in a coffin and flown to Quito for a hero's funeral in his adopted country. When he is laid to rest, however, the coffin is empty and Assange begins a new life under an adopted name.

4) The Madame Tussaud option

The famous London attraction announces that it is make a waxwork of the Wikileaks founder and sends one of its top modellers to the embassy to recreate his features. No one suspects anything when the completed "waxwork" is taken out of the embassy in full view of press, police and demonstrators. En route to Madame Tussaud's however, the waxwork mysteriously disappears.

5) The Extropian option

Using his advanced hacking skills, Assange downloads his consciousness onto a computer. Thus freed from the constraints of a physical body, Assange merges with the Internet, achieving his ultimate aim of knowing everything that ever happened anywhere and putting himself forever beyond the reach of justice.