FILE PHOTO: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is seen on the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, Britain, May 19, 2017. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/File Photo

Oh, my chatter from yesterday bothers me, said Konrad Adenauer, the first Federal Chancellor of the Western Republic. And that always works. What the Greens said yesterday – is that no longer true today? This is about the case of Julian Assange. The whistleblower and Wikileaks founder is to be extradited from Britain to the United States, where he faces 175 years in prison. That means: until death.

The Greens – in the last legislative period, i.e. still in opposition – accused the federal government of cowardice because it did not protect Assange. The focus of criticism: the Foreign Office, which was led by a Social Democrat at the time.

And now that one of them, Annalena Baerbock, is in office in a coalition with the Social Democrats: nothing. Silence. Except that she is following current developments and that the office is in contact with the Foreign Office in London about the case.

Disappointing isn’t the right word for it. Horror fits better. And scandalous comes pretty close. Because value-based foreign policy (Baerbock) would look different. You don’t have to adopt all the customs of the diplomatic service either. In other cases, the minister doesn’t do it either, see Ukraine, Russia, China. She is sometimes remarkably open, blunt, and not at all diplomatic.

As the Green Party candidate for chancellor, Baerbock spoke out in favor of Assange’s release on September 14, 2021. As follows: “Due to serious violations of fundamental freedom rights of the European Convention on Human Rights in dealing with Julian Assange – above all against the prohibition of torture (Art. 3), against the right to liberty and security (Art. 5), against the right to a fair trial (Art. 6) and against the right not to be punished without law (Art. 7) – we join the resolution of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe of 27 January 2020 and the appeal of the UN Special Envoy Nils Melzer and call for the immediate release of Julian Assange.” More clarity is hardly possible.

Especially since Assange is doing really badly. A slight stroke was a result of years of, yes, how to put it: hunting for him. In May 2019, after visiting Assange, UN Special Rapporteur Nils Melzer identified serious damage to his health. Assange was evidently “affected by the extremely hostile and indiscriminate environment of recent years.” He has symptoms of “psychological torture”. The situation has not fundamentally improved since then.

Now you can also see Assange critically, yes. There are examples: Influencing the 2016 US election campaign in favor of Donald Trump by publishing thousands of emails from Democratic candidate Clinton. Host of a show for Russia Today 2012, positions against Israel, for Assad. Lecture tour to Sweden in 2010 at the invitation of a radical right-wing anti-Semitic “brotherhood movement” that claims to be Protestant. Allegations of persecution of Wikileaks by “Jewish” interests and media 2011.

But if that should now determine Baerbock and the Greens in their judgment – then they have to react to it even more. Open, public. Because the foreign minister is responsible, one way or the other. The Chancellery will also be waiting for your answer.