Wikileaks Leaks

God damn it, I just knew something like this was going to happen:

WikiLeaks on Thursday confirmed reports that it has lost control of a cache of U.S. diplomatic cables that it has been publishing in recent months, saying a security breach has led to the public disclosure of hundreds of thousands of the unredacted documents.

The website quickly sought to deflect blame for the leak of the leaked classified cables. It accused the U.K. newspaper the Guardian—which last year was WikiLeaks’ partner in publishing some of the cables—of publishing in a book a password that unlocks an encrypted file containing the unredacted cables.

Unredacted means that the names of informants and allies are out there. At this point, no one know how much damage has been done.

This is precisely what I feared. Wikileaks has been fairly reasonable up to this point in releasing cables, trying to keep people out of danger (modulo their tendency to editorialize and sensationalize). But once you release something onto the internet — as numerous sexters have found out — it never dies. It’s out there.

This is why, despite my enthusiasm for open government and my hatred of secrecy, I’ve never thought that Bradley Manning was a hero and have had trouble working up sympathy for him. The guy didn’t carefully and responsibly expose government corruption (the leaks, with a few exceptions, tend to be more embarrassing than enraging). He just dumped a bunch of documents to someone he hoped — maybe — wouldn’t be reckless.

Now there’s a real possibility that people will die over this. Was it worth it?

Comments are closed.

  1. mikedomi39

    I agree, Hal. Everything I have seen on Manning seems to indicate he was just a bitter young gay soldier who wanted to act out. it doesnt seem like he had any agenda other than to hurt whoever he could.

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  2. Mississippi Yankee

    Heaven fore fend if we should ever discover this was all part of a (rather big) nudge towards a “one world government”. Entire governments will be harmed by this, It won’t matter if you want to believe it or not.

    Something this potentially harmful doesn’t happen in a vacuum. NEVER
    /Let the socialist flamers begin/

    Oh and things are getting real shaky at the Fed too.

    Bernanke’s In BIG TROUBLE

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  3. InsipiD

    Wikileaks has been fairly reasonable up to this point

    The problem with this is that you’re agreeing with obvious criminal activity up to a point so long as you never have a big conflict with the criminal. That’s like being OK with terrorism so long as they’re only bombing abortion clinics or being OK with embezzlement because you don’t like the company in question. It’s better not to encourage what’s going on at all than to think that any organization or person can balance the perfect level of criminal activity to still “be good.”

    I’ve never thought that Bradley Manning was a hero and have had trouble working up sympathy for him.

    Boy howdy. Manning is no hero. He’s like someone who just grabbed a file folder on the way out when encouraged to resign, only to find out that the file he took didn’t contain much info anyway.

    Everything I have seen on Manning seems to indicate he was just a bitter young gay soldier who wanted to act out. it doesnt seem like he had any agenda other than to hurt whoever he could.

    I didn’t know that he was gay, though I’d heard it suggested even early on. My lack of sympathy for Manning is totally related to the fact that he’s constantly been bitching about his treatment behind bars while undergoing conditions that accurately describe my housing through 3 years of college. If he’s gay, maybe those protesting on his behalf are only mad that he’s in solitary where he can’t get no prison lovin’.

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  4. CzarChasm

    I am frankly appalled that any American could maintain a shrug-your-shoulders kind of cavalier attitude towards WikiLeaks. Assange and whatever accomplices he has around the world made their name on a wholly manufactured controversy by releasing a highly edited video of two Apache helicopters in Iraq engaging heavily armed insurgents. They used the fact that Reuters journalists who were traveling with the insurgents, as well as children who were in a van that was also part of the insurgent contingent, got killed in the engagement to demonize the pilots and gunners in the Apaches as murderers. They even created a website called CollateralMurder.com to post the release to. How quaint.

    Eventually the truth came out. Many bloggers did their due diligence and thoroughly debunked WikiLeaks’ and Assange’s interpretations of what the video showed, but the pilots’ and gunners’ names were already out there. No telling what their lives might be like to this day. In fact, while I was searching for a good debunking of the story Assange dishonestly built his infamy upon so I could back up my assertions for this reply, I found a good one in the old MooreWatch Forums archives.

    I think I recall that Manning was the source of the highly edited video in the Apache attack video. I’m not positive about that, but regardless, there is nothing about “openness” or “transparency” that underpins Assange or WikiLeaks. They are anathema to those concepts. At best, they are one-world-government leftists. At worst, they are anarchists whose only goal in life is to foment worldwide chaos. They should be universally scorned and relegated to obscurity, the worst punishment narcissists such as Assange can suffer.

    CC

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  5. InsipiD

    there is nothing about “openness” or “transparency” that underpins Assange or WikiLeaks.

    This. At any suggestion of secret info about Assange or Wikileaks, they cry foul and claim to be the victims. There’s nothing benevolent or fair about the way that Wikileaks operates, either. They choose targets and meter info out in such a way to maximize their own visibility as a part of the story. That’s why they take info in as huge chunks and release it as a slow stream: to keep Wikileaks in the news and to maximize the time that their chosen enemy’s name is exposed to the public. If the desired effect is achieved early, the flow of data can be stopped and saved for later. They’re sitting on tons of info to release later if they need to…if their mission is what they pretend, all info would be available as soon as it came in and could be made available in a readable form.

    Has anyone explained yet why Assange looks 15 years older than he is?

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  6. Hal_10000 *

    The problem with this is that you’re agreeing with obvious criminal activity up to a point so long as you never have a big conflict with the criminal. That’s like being OK with terrorism so long as they’re only bombing abortion clinics or being OK with embezzlement because you don’t like the company in question. It’s better not to encourage what’s going on at all than to think that any organization or person can balance the perfect level of criminal activity to still “be good

    Wikileaks didn’t take the information and the law is clear — it’s leaking the info that’s against the law, not publishing it. I have a mixed feeling about wikileaks itself. As I said, our goverment does keep too much information classified, most of it not dangerous. In Operation Fast and Furious, for example, they’ve been classifying everything. Many of the people criticizing wiikileaks would be delighted if info came out on that. That having been said, Assange clearly has an anti-American slant (see Collateral Murder).

    My praise was very precise — they have redacted named from leaked documents. It appears that others have no such ethics.

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  7. Hal_10000 *

    Has anyone explained yet why Assange looks 15 years older than he is?

    Spending all your time consumed with hatred for America tends to age you.

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  8. CzarChasm

    Czar if you look here, you’ll see I’ve talked about Collateral Murder:

    http://archives.right-thinking.com/index.php/weblog/comments/collateral_murder/

    From the link you provided and that you wrote:

    Finally, this is demonstrating why Wikileaks is useful and why the government is so determined, through overhauling the internet, to stamp it out.

    Like I said, I am frankly appalled that any American could maintain a shrug-your-shoulders kind of cavalier attitude towards WikiLeaks, and calling them “useful” goes well beyond that attitude Hal. “Talking about Collateral Murder” does no good for anyone when you post in support, as minimal as you may have intended it, of enemies of the state like Assange and his accomplices. In this present post, you were cavalier. In the past post you linked to you were mildly supportive. Did you read the MooreWatch Forum thread I linked to? What would it take for you to outright condemn Assange and WikiLeaks?

    CC

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  9. JimK

    I think I see the problem, and Hal, correct me if I’m way off base here…but:

    Hal – and also I – think(s) that government should be way, WAY more transparent. It is a necessity, one that would return freedoms to Americans rather than continue to go down the road of taking them the hell away at every turn.

    And so, when WIkileaks first came upon the scene, it was sort of a “they may not be ideal, but they’re all we have” sort of a thing.

    Unfortunately with every passing incident, the plain truth becomes clear, that Assange and WIkileaks are not interested in what is right – rather they are consumed with what makes them famous. Wikileaks is not what anyone hoped – well, anyone not named Julian Assange or Bradley Manning – and will result in the deaths of good and decent people just trying to do their jobs for their respective national interests.

    I’ll be plain: fuck Wikileaks, and I hope that any nation who can do so legally hunts their members down and prosecutes the living shit out of them.

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  10. Mississippi Yankee

    Hal. are you saying that the one fucking time you didn’t think ‘good was the enemy of perfect’ you were wrong?

    So in fact you can now claim:
    “I’m never wrong, and when I’m wrong I’m really right”

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  11. Kimpost

    Seeing that this apparently is easy as pie I’ll just ask who’s right? Is this a question of mystified Americanism, or is it more complicated than that?

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  12. CzarChasm

    JimK said:
    And so, when WIkileaks first came upon the scene, it was sort of a “they may not be ideal, but they’re all we have” sort of a thing.

    And then Hal_10000 said:
    I think you said it perfectly, Jim. This incident has persuaded me that these guys are not being responsible at all.

    I guess this is what I don’t get guys. One of you says you felt whatever you felt about them “when they first came on the scene” and the other says that this incident, the one having to do with this post, almost a year and half after they pulled the editing crap with those videos and audios, has convinced him that these guys “are not being responsible at all.” When they first came on the scene I understand, but within a week of the CollateralMurder site release, there were many controversies already raised about the editing. Within a couple of weeks to a month, the original video/audio release was thoroughly debunked as a distorted hack job against Army pilots and gunners replete with accusations of a high level military coverup that never happened. Two thorough investigations preceded the WikiLeaks release, and last I heard, the military was getting ready to launch a third investigation because of the manufactured controversies raised by Assange and his cronies, though I am not sure whether or not that third investigation ever came to fruition.

    My question is, why does it take an accidental release of potentially harmful information to get all “screw WikiLeaks” about, when the long-established fact of the matter is that their intentional releases were meant to harm people just doing their jobs?

    Sorry, no offense intended, but I’m still not getting what took you so long, or why this particular incident is any more egregious than the one that made them infamous.

    CC

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  13. Hal_10000 *

    Well, as I see it, there are two different aspects to Wikileaks:

    1) They provide an outlet for people to provide potential whistleblower material. I’m i favor of this and this was what I was responding to favorably. Even in the collateral murder thing, the Feds made the problem worse by trying to cover it up. Releasing all the information, to me, made it clear that the soldiers did not act badly.

    2) The editorialize what they realize. THAT I didn’t like from Day One.

    So I liked (1) but not (2). But this latest leak shows they aren’t even being good about part (1), hence my chage of mind.

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  14. Mississippi Yankee

    Perhaps it’s because of my New England upbringing but I find it refreshing to see others that understand the non-gender application of the very versatile yet most derogatory epithet.

    Cunt is also used informally as a derogatory epithet in referring to a person of either sex, but this usage is relatively recent, dating back only as far as the late nineteenth century. – from Wikipedia

    Thanks Poosh

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  15. CzarChasm

    Hal said:
    Even in the collateral murder thing, the Feds made the problem worse by trying to cover it up.

    It’s been awhile since I paid any attention to the heavily armed Iraqi insurgents getting cut to shreds by Apache helicopters case, so I may be forgetting something. Would you mind refreshing my memory on how exactly the .fedgov tried to cover anything up? Because as I recall, there were two thorough investigations of the events of that day before the military or anyone else had ever heard of WikiLeaks, CollateralMurder.com or Julian Assange. The only coverup I recall was that of Assange trying to coverup the fact that he and/or his cohorts had edited any and all context out of the video that would serve to show that the pilots and gunners, as well as the ground elements who could be heard giving the order to engage, were well within the Rules Of Engagement in place at the time. But if you say the .fedgov tried to coverup something, I’m sure it must be so and I’m just forgetting it, or never knew about it to begin with. I look forward to reading your documentation. Thanks.

    CC

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