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Author Topic: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?  (Read 12372 times)

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Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #25 on: December 01, 2010, 03:17:42 PM »
Well, and they seem to be saying in the article that they don't even want to arrest him, that they haven't had a chance to question him and they'd like to.

It doesn't make sense on a small scale.

It's looking, walking, and quacking like a witch hunt. :P

It seems hard to picture putting a guy on the Most Wanted List for what is basically an Arrest Warrant. BUT he's not JUST stomped on the US Government's face, he's embarrassed other governments. I suspect the fear is if he isn't brought in, he'd never answer the charges. I don't know if the US is behind the witch hunt, I suspect somewhere in that LONG list of people he's pissed off is someone in Sweden with the pull to put the request into action.

It seems.. out of proportion with the charges and the stage of the trial.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #26 on: December 01, 2010, 05:21:09 PM »
Interestingly enough I got curious enough to go over to take a look at some of the horrible cables that were uploaded to the net by wikileaks. I picked out a few at random.

I found one that was relating details of coordination with the Austrian Minstry of Finance (it was flagged secret, one of 15,000+ they said they had). It covered 4 major topics in it's summary.

1. Concerns of dealing with North Korean
2. Lack of Transparency in certain oil pipeline works in the former soviet unions.
3. Cooperation between the Ministry and the US over possible terrorist money laundering/trafficking operations that were on their mutual watch lists.
4. Various criminal financial operations.

Oh yeah, we needed to know that. It was a BURNING need to have the subjects of ongoing investigations posted on the internet.

I wonder how many investigations in and outside the US Government have been derailed by the disclosure now.

Online Vekseid

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #27 on: December 01, 2010, 06:30:35 PM »
I think having a policy of 'fair game' - releasing stuff more than ten or fifteen years old - would have been a lot wiser. But then he couldn't throw a wrench in the Middle East.

Offline RemielTopic starter

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #28 on: December 01, 2010, 07:43:40 PM »
So, apparently, WikiLeaks, which had been using Amazon.com's server since it was bombarded by Denial-Of-Service attacks since the cable leaks, has been removed from Amazon's servers.

Does anyone else find this developing story as fascinating as I do?  This has the potential to have political fallout of Watergate-like proportions.

Online Vekseid

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #29 on: December 01, 2010, 08:35:26 PM »
So far, not for the US government.

Al Jazeera, however, is apparently being very quiet about the leaks due to the nature of their content.

If Assange comes through with the plans to release the internal documents of a major US financial company, that could create a much larger impact.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #30 on: December 01, 2010, 09:28:59 PM »
So far, not for the US government.

Al Jazeera, however, is apparently being very quiet about the leaks due to the nature of their content.

If Assange comes through with the plans to release the internal documents of a major US financial company, that could create a much larger impact.

Seems to me, that he's skating on thin ice.

Online Vekseid

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #31 on: December 01, 2010, 10:42:45 PM »
He's probably going to lose control of the organization. Iceland seems keen on supporting them, however, which gives Wikileaks a solid foundation even if Assange falls through a crack somewhere.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #32 on: December 01, 2010, 11:00:12 PM »
He's probably going to lose control of the organization. Iceland seems keen on supporting them, however, which gives Wikileaks a solid foundation even if Assange falls through a crack somewhere.

If they were smart they would drop him like a hot ember. He's pulling them down with them.

I'm still a bit surprised about the stuff I saw with one quick look through.

Offline Hemingway

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #33 on: December 02, 2010, 05:21:04 PM »
I allow myself a degree of youthful idealism in this case. A large part of that has to do with the reaction from certain people, who seem to be all too willing to undermine the very principles they claim to stand for, to silence Assange. That fills me with a sort of anarchic glee, to see the power structure rattled in that way.

Would it be tragic if anyone died as a direct result of these leaks? Well, yes, but no more tragic than any other deaths, including ones our various governments are responsible for.

I don't believe that if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear. Not for individuals. But for countries, that sort of should be true. If you have to keep secrets from your own citizens, well, then you're going to have to explain to me how that is not a betrayal of trust.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #34 on: December 02, 2010, 05:26:01 PM »
I allow myself a degree of youthful idealism in this case. A large part of that has to do with the reaction from certain people, who seem to be all too willing to undermine the very principles they claim to stand for, to silence Assange. That fills me with a sort of anarchic glee, to see the power structure rattled in that way.

Would it be tragic if anyone died as a direct result of these leaks? Well, yes, but no more tragic than any other deaths, including ones our various governments are responsible for.

I don't believe that if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear. Not for individuals. But for countries, that sort of should be true. If you have to keep secrets from your own citizens, well, then you're going to have to explain to me how that is not a betrayal of trust.

Do you think it's right to publicly disclose the subjects of criminal investigations into international money launderers, arms traders and possible groups with terrorist links?

Seems to me disclosing that, and disrupting delicate diplomatic negotiations are things that the 'public' DOESN'T need to know at every point of the process

Offline Trieste

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Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #35 on: December 02, 2010, 05:39:17 PM »
... you do know that Wikileaks asked the US for help in redacting those cables that might pose a genuine threat to specific lives... right? Prior to the release of these things, there was communication.

Quite frankly, I think the government has not earned the right to maintain such a level of secrecy. If they had used it responsibly and actually kept secret those things that NEED to stay secret to protect lives, there would be little problem. Instead, they also use their power to protect anything that might possibly be damaging. This is not okay. They need to admit their mistakes along with everyone else.

And I'm still not sure what's wrong with releasing the Panama cables. Why did those need to remain secret? No, no. The federal government has taken advantage of their ability to keep things secret for far too long.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #36 on: December 02, 2010, 06:08:51 PM »
... you do know that Wikileaks asked the US for help in redacting those cables that might pose a genuine threat to specific lives... right? Prior to the release of these things, there was communication.

Quite frankly, I think the government has not earned the right to maintain such a level of secrecy. If they had used it responsibly and actually kept secret those things that NEED to stay secret to protect lives, there would be little problem. Instead, they also use their power to protect anything that might possibly be damaging. This is not okay. They need to admit their mistakes along with everyone else.

And I'm still not sure what's wrong with releasing the Panama cables. Why did those need to remain secret? No, no. The federal government has taken advantage of their ability to keep things secret for far too long.

Would it be okay for the Enquirer/New York Times/LA Times/whatever paper you want to name to call the Justice Department and say 'Hey we got all these legal documents, interdepartmental emails, memos and such that we're wanting you to come over and tell us what's too unsafe to publish?'

When they don't respond or drag their feet and the paper in question publishes EVERYTHING, it's the Justice Departments fault when the cases they were coordinating fall apart due to 'full disclosure'.

I sincerely doubted that the government felt they were going to be given the full file and what promises could they expect a site whose 'full disclosure' outlook is well known.

I'm sorry, 'knowledge is meant to be free' and 'We have a right to know everything' doesn't fly. I do believe the government has been less than scrupulous in their past actions, and yes they have endangered people in some of them. Do I think the mechanisms for oversight needs to be fixed. Absolutely.

Do I think that Wikileaks is that mechanism? No. Who, if anyone besides themselves, are they responsible to? How many more actions outside the country that were exposed by this disclosure are going to lead to problems?

Who knows? Organized Criminals, Cartels, Money Launderers, Arms Dealers.. (I'm refraining from the possible terrorists links) are now aware of who is looking at their activities, and where.


So, as an example, some guy in the MS13 organization goes through the messages and finds out the banks in 'country X' in Central America are working with the Justice Department/DEA to track their funds. So, they look up at who could possibly have been doing this and goes out and machetes the guy and his wife to cut the link.

What about investigations across national borders that deal with things like.. oh.. HUMAN TRAFFICKING? The Trafficking groups find out the fed and the locals are looking at them.

Well lets assume the best case and the girls/boys are packed up and shipped elsewhere.

And it's the US Government's fault? Because they took the opinion that ALL the messages were 'need to know' and didn't want to bargain with the folks at Wikileaks?  Content aside, all the documents give an overview of how the system works. Knowing how a system works allows folks who don't represent our best interests and don't have our good in mind a way to find holes in the system.

Names on the memos help them get an idea of who works where. So now they know this person works in this department and would be the sort to do the sort of job they want if he/she is properly blackmailed/threatened/manipulated.


Offline Hemingway

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #37 on: December 02, 2010, 06:53:58 PM »
Do you think it's right to publicly disclose the subjects of criminal investigations into international money launderers, arms traders and possible groups with terrorist links?

Seems to me disclosing that, and disrupting delicate diplomatic negotiations are things that the 'public' DOESN'T need to know at every point of the process

I think that's a very poor defense. Because you have to consider that among what has been leaked, have been things that absolutely should not be kept secret. If the cost of exposing those things is the exposure of some things that should not be exposed, then I do believe it's right, yes.

As for the citizens of a country not having a right to know everything their government does, or saying there are things they don't need to know, is more than a little disturbing, in the Orwellian sense.

I'm not American, and so my government isn't - at least not in those word - one of the people, by the people, for the people. They are our elected officials, though, not our overlords. It's an extension of the people, not a mechanism for keeping us from having to think about big issues.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #38 on: December 02, 2010, 07:06:02 PM »
I think that's a very poor defense. Because you have to consider that among what has been leaked, have been things that absolutely should not be kept secret. If the cost of exposing those things is the exposure of some things that should not be exposed, then I do believe it's right, yes.

As for the citizens of a country not having a right to know everything their government does, or saying there are things they don't need to know, is more than a little disturbing, in the Orwellian sense.

I'm not American, and so my government isn't - at least not in those word - one of the people, by the people, for the people. They are our elected officials, though, not our overlords. It's an extension of the people, not a mechanism for keeping us from having to think about big issues.

So you're okay with someone coming along and giving out internal documentation on processes and deals the government does to ensure the security of their citizens and enforcement of laws, diplomatic actions with allies and attempts to build or deal with less friendly groups?

Sorry, there are things every government does that their electorate does not need total disclosure at the moment it's being done.

Delicate negotiations with other nations, investigations into the actions of potential enemies, criminals, and counter-espionage comes to mind.

Offline Trieste

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Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #39 on: December 02, 2010, 07:09:21 PM »
Would it be okay for the Enquirer/New York Times/LA Times/whatever paper you want to name to call the Justice Department and say 'Hey we got all these legal documents, interdepartmental emails, memos and such that we're wanting you to come over and tell us what's too unsafe to publish?'

When they don't respond or drag their feet and the paper in question publishes EVERYTHING, it's the Justice Departments fault when the cases they were coordinating fall apart due to 'full disclosure'.

I sincerely doubted that the government felt they were going to be given the full file and what promises could they expect a site whose 'full disclosure' outlook is well known.

They don't know that. They didn't even try. "They didn't think they'd get a fair shake!!!!" is no excuse. And now they are thinking of trumping up some charge against him (in addition to the rape and assault charges that his lawyer says have been cleared) so they can call him wanted in the US? "He can't bloody our nose and get away with it!" is the battle cry of bad villains in Disney movies. In real life, you makes your mistakes and you takes your lumps and you deal with the consequences. The US government made a mistake. Many of them, in fact.

And you know, if I could think of someone who would competently replace Hillary Clinton in her position, I would be calling for her resignation along with others.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #40 on: December 02, 2010, 07:17:59 PM »
They don't know that. They didn't even try. "They didn't think they'd get a fair shake!!!!" is no excuse. And now they are thinking of trumping up some charge against him (in addition to the rape and assault charges that his lawyer says have been cleared) so they can call him wanted in the US? "He can't bloody our nose and get away with it!" is the battle cry of bad villains in Disney movies. In real life, you makes your mistakes and you takes your lumps and you deal with the consequences. The US government made a mistake. Many of them, in fact.

And you know, if I could think of someone who would competently replace Hillary Clinton in her position, I would be calling for her resignation along with others.

Sorry the only way Hilary Clinton is leaving (barring the president firing her) is if she has an 'Out' so that she can withdraw from his cabinet with grace and run against him in two years. (You know she's looking for an excuse.)

Barring the sight of the President shooting someone in the Oval Office (like a girl scout delivering cookies), the only two ways I see her leaving is being forcefully removed or dropping dead.

I admit I have issues with the President but he's probably the most forth right and up front man we've had in the Oval Office since President Carter. I trust Hilary Clinton about as far as I can throw the USS Nimitz (the only person I trust less in line for the Presidents seat is the VP btw)


Offline Trieste

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Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #41 on: December 02, 2010, 07:21:38 PM »
I agree quite strongly.

I'd personally like to see a Hillary/Palin cage match. I'd buy tickets. >.>

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Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #42 on: December 02, 2010, 07:23:06 PM »
* Oniya did not need that mental image.  Just ate.  :P

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #43 on: December 02, 2010, 07:23:53 PM »
I agree quite strongly.

I'd personally like to see a Hillary/Palin cage match. I'd buy tickets. >.>

Can I drop the carrier on them? (HATE them both)

Offline Hemingway

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #44 on: December 02, 2010, 07:29:44 PM »
So you're okay with someone coming along and giving out internal documentation on processes and deals the government does to ensure the security of their citizens and enforcement of laws, diplomatic actions with allies and attempts to build or deal with less friendly groups?

Sorry, there are things every government does that their electorate does not need total disclosure at the moment it's being done.

Delicate negotiations with other nations, investigations into the actions of potential enemies, criminals, and counter-espionage comes to mind.

Yeah, so does torturing people, fighting wars of dubious validity and trying to cover up its fiascos. Governments should not have the rights to tell their citizens what they need and do not need to know. Throwing what I said back at me, regardless of how much spin you try to put on it, is not going to change my opinion.

See, there's a double standard here. To leak a governments secrets, potentially endangering lives and a country's interests, is a crime. But somehow, a government sending its people to kill and die, is not. If a person had done the same, well, it would've been a crime. The point being that to leak these secrets is only wrong because the people it wrongs are the people who decide what is and isn't wrong.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #45 on: December 02, 2010, 07:58:24 PM »
Yeah, so does torturing people, fighting wars of dubious validity and trying to cover up its fiascos. Governments should not have the rights to tell their citizens what they need and do not need to know. Throwing what I said back at me, regardless of how much spin you try to put on it, is not going to change my opinion.

See, there's a double standard here. To leak a governments secrets, potentially endangering lives and a country's interests, is a crime. But somehow, a government sending its people to kill and die, is not. If a person had done the same, well, it would've been a crime. The point being that to leak these secrets is only wrong because the people it wrongs are the people who decide what is and isn't wrong.

Oh yeah.. we're back to the video the private 'liberated' dealing the tragic deaths of the Reuter's crew.

Which was 'being covered up' by being found in the folder of the JAG department of his base. Which most likely means the Army's legal department was doing an investigation into it. Most likely they were doing an use of force investigation.

Those, like aircraft mishaps, take a long period of time. It's most likely never going to be done properly done.

Want to bet the Army was working with the Iraqis too.

Offline Trieste

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Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #46 on: December 02, 2010, 08:15:36 PM »
Okay, look.

The previous post shows a lot of faith in the US government. It is fine if you want to show that faith. (The investigation might not actually have been in progress, it might not have necessarily been an abuse of force investigation, and so on.) However, please understand that not everyone shares that faith in the government. I don't trust Congress to do the right thing; they already aren't. I don't trust the military to do the right thing, because honestly I have too many family members in the military and have heard far too many stories of how the military admins can be complete, ass-covering dicks.

And that applies to the current situation as well as the video and all that crud. Can we please not revisit the video? I still cringe at the thought of reliving that particular thread.

Offline Callie Del Noire

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #47 on: December 02, 2010, 08:27:58 PM »
Okay, look.

The previous post shows a lot of faith in the US government. It is fine if you want to show that faith. (The investigation might not actually have been in progress, it might not have necessarily been an abuse of force investigation, and so on.) However, please understand that not everyone shares that faith in the government. I don't trust Congress to do the right thing; they already aren't. I don't trust the military to do the right thing, because honestly I have too many family members in the military and have heard far too many stories of how the military admins can be complete, ass-covering dicks.

I served in the Navy for 15 years, and would still be if I was medially fit to serve. I know about dicks in the military, I just don't see how one LITTLE DICK who was getting grief for not doing his job can get away with what was basically ESPIONAGE.

Do I think Assange should be hunted down? Not really. I think he overstepped his bounds but I think the folks involved were heavy handed.

And you know what.. sometimes the process works. Hells, MOST often it works. It's the exception that draws the notice not the rule. As for the video.. I agree, I don't want to revisit that sad tragedy, but we'll never know how it would have been resolved now because some little tool interfered with the process.


Offline Hemingway

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #48 on: December 03, 2010, 04:44:34 PM »
And you know what.. sometimes the process works. Hells, MOST often it works. It's the exception that draws the notice not the rule. As for the video.. I agree, I don't want to revisit that sad tragedy, but we'll never know how it would have been resolved now because some little tool interfered with the process.

I wasn't talking about that video specifically in my earlier post, but it is a good example. What I am curious to know is why an incident like that should ever be kept from the public, at any stage. It's true the system can work. There are probably instances of it not working, too. But that's entirely beside the point. Even if it works ten out of ten times, there is still no reason why it should be kept from people.

Offline mystictiger

Re: WikiLeaks: Terrorists or Champions of the Truth?
« Reply #49 on: December 03, 2010, 05:32:27 PM »
What an interesting topic.

For a start, Assange cannot be guilty of Treason as he's not an American citizen. As to the idea that Assange is a criminal? Do you -really- think that the US wouldn't arrest him / unlawfully render / disappear him if they thought they could charge him with anything? The UK has a very strong extradition treaty to the US - it's virtually impossible to object. Where is Assange? In the UK. You should see how things follow from there.

Secondly, the whole wikileaks exposure of diplomatic cables will not risk the lives of any serving US solider, diplomat or other official. At very 'best' it will simply embarrass them. But then there is a very high chance that - for instance - the UK already knew what was in the content of these emails.

Will it make diplomacy harder to do? Yes and no. We have learned that US diplomats have been... taking liberties with their diplomatic status by recruiting agents when they should leave that job to spies. This will probably make people less likely to become agents for the US... or in other words, commit espionage.

The stakes at the international level are simply too high for things like this to matter. Will Britain stop cooperating with the US in Afghanistan or Iraq? No. Will people stop trading with America? No. The embarrasing revelations will be dismissed as propaganda (e.g. the Saudi call that the US bomb Iraq). This is rather like parents finding porn under your bed - it's mildly embarrasing, but we know full well that everyone does this. It will make American diplomats more mindful of what they say, perhaps. It will also further harden a culture of secrecy and security that pervades NATO halls of power.

When various diplomats posted to London steal, keep slaves, and so on, it is simply hidden under the carpet. Only the most vicious dictatorships get 'insulted'. Unless, of course, you're dealing with Israel-Turkey. There Turkey has to show itself to be not a lapdog of the US and therefore will make personal gestures.

If this mattered, there would have been a waive of US diplomats being declared PNG and sent home. Has this happened yet? No.

Palin-Clinton cage-match would be fun to watch, but can we add tigers to make sure they both lose?