They’re calling it, the biggest leak in intelligence history.
Julian Assange, founder and editor-in-chief of the whistleblowing website, WikiLeaks, is taking a lot of heat this summer for publishing the highly classified Afghanistan War Logs. These videos answer –
Why the World Needs WikiLeaksand the prescience of George Bernard Shaw’s statement; All great truths begin as blasphemies
What are legitmate secrets?
In his defense, Assange says the papers leaked are not current tactical information but does document the last six years of U.S. involvement in the war in Afghanistan, and is important for understanding the progress (or lack of it) It’s significant because Americans have lost contact with the reality of the war and perhaps a closer look will change the perceptions of the people who are funding it.
In this TED interview – Assange explains how governments withhold information and use it as leverage to manipulate the balance of powers. He gives an example of how leaking a report that had been withheld changed the result of an election in Kenya.
He makes the point – if someone is spending money to conceal information – then there is usually an economic incentive for it not to be known.
Comparisons are being made to DANIEL ELLSBERG who leaked the Top Secret Pentagon Papers.
Which if you haven’t seen the award-winning documentary; “The Most Dangerous Man in America” – it is totally worth your time to check it out. You’ll be amazed to see how much things, haven’t changed – and in fact, with regard to the mainstream press, censorship and towing the corporate party-line–it’s just gotten worse.
In its landmark ruling on the Pentagon Papers, the US Supreme Court ruled that:
“only a free and unrestrained press can effectively expose deception in government.”
WikiLeaks says “We agree.”
Although some accuse Assange of being irresponsible, claiming the information he leaked may have endangered the lives of informants for the U.S., by revealing their coordinates.
A better question is; why was that information published online –even internally within the military system? Is that standard protocol for secret informants??
In this interview, Neil Sheehan, New York Times reporter who was responsible for publishing the Pentagon Papers – compares and contrasts the differences between WikiLeaks and the case of the Pentagon Papers.
Follow the Money
–the phrase made famous by investigative journalists; Woodward and Bernstein, in breaking the story of the Watergate scandal.
This situation also reveals the truth about who profits from the war and asks who stands to gain by the making the Afghan War Logs public? Assange believes the War Logs are deeply important to understanding how the war in Afghanistan has progressed since it began almost 10-years ago. The people [US taxpayers] have a right to know what we’re paying for – and most importantly, the Afghan people have a right to this information in order to effectively manage the destiny of their own country. It’s highly likely civil war will continue despite US involvement and as Sheehan stated in his interveiw;
“U.S. will be damned lucky to manage a successful pull out.”
From the WikiLeak website -www.wikileaks.org
We believe that transparency in government activities leads to reduced corruption, better government and stronger democracies. All governments can benefit from increased scrutiny by the world community, as well as their own people. We believe this scrutiny requires information. Historically that information has been costly – in terms of human life and human rights. But with technological advances – the internet, and cryptography – the risks of conveying important information can be lowered.
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