Friday, January 7, 2011

WikiLeaks update 07.JAN.11

About now, somebody in the State Department is probably lobbying for a total WikiLeaks dump.  Some Norwegian site claims to have the whole collection anyway so a complete dump is not a matter of if but when.  At least with a total dump, there is the possibility that the populace would be overwhelmed and then quickly bored.  As it is now, the releases are coming just fast enough for the curious citizen to absorb.  It is the delegitimization of the USA empire by a thousand cuts.

But of course, that will never happen because there are butts to be covered, and goodness knows there are probably some seriously embarrassing cables yet to come.  So the State Department will pretend the horse really isn't out of the barn. Good luck with that.

WikiLeaks exposed US and Hillary's hopelessness
By Robert Fisk
Tuesday, 28 December 2010
Almost 30 years ago, a British diplomat asked me to lunch in Beirut. In spite of rumours to the contrary, she told me on the phone, she was not a spy but a mere attache, wanting only to chat about the future of Lebanon.
These were kidnapping days in the Lebanese capital, when to be seen with the wrong luncheon companion could finish in a basement in south Beirut.
I trusted this woman. I was wrong. She arrived with two armed British bodyguards who sat at the next table.
Within minutes of sitting down at a fish restaurant, she started plying me with questions about Hezbollah's armaments in southern Lebanon. I stood up and walked out.
Hezbollah had two men at another neighbouring table. They called on me next morning. No problem, they said, they saw me walk out. But watch out.
Ever since this woman lied to me, I have avoided Western embassies throughout the world.
But, about the same time as this deceit was practised on me, the Iranians published in book form their massive, incredible volumes of US secret files from the American embassy in Iran.
Students had spent years since the 1979 Islamic revolution painstakingly sticking together the shredded diplomatic cables to Washington from the US mission in Tehran.
And, lo and behold, one of them is attache Bruce Laingen's conclusion that "the Persian psyche is an overriding egoism . . . The practical effect of it is an almost total Persian preoccupation with self and leaves little room for understanding points of view other than one's own".
And then up pops the very same cable last week on WikiLeaks, breathlessly highlighted by The New York Times as if this is an extraordinary scoop. more
Then there is Glenn Greenwald's nice little summary of the hits of WikiLeaks:
FRIDAY, DEC 24, 2010 05:25 ET
What WikiLeaks revealed to the world in 2010
Throughout this year I've devoted substantial attention to WikiLeaks, particularly in the last four weeks as calls for its destruction intensified. To understand why I've done so, and to see what motivates the increasing devotion of the U.S. Government and those influenced by it to destroying that organization, it's well worth reviewing exactly what WikiLeaks exposed to the world just in the last year: the breadth of the corruption, deceit, brutality and criminality on the part of the world's most powerful factions.
As revealing as the disclosures themselves are, the reactions to them have been equally revealing. The vast bulk of the outrage has been devoted not to the crimes that have been exposed but rather to those who exposed them: WikiLeaks and (allegedly) Bradley Manning. A consensus quickly emerged in the political and media class that they are Evil Villains who must be severely punished, while those responsible for the acts they revealed are guilty of nothing. That reaction has not been weakened at all even by the Pentagon's own admission that, in stark contrast to its own actions, there is no evidence -- zero -- that any of WikiLeaks' actions has caused even a single death. Meanwhile, the American establishment media -- even in the face of all these revelations -- continues to insist on the contradictory, Orwellian platitudes that (a) there is Nothing New™ in anything disclosed by WikiLeaks and (b) WikiLeaks has done Grave Harm to American National Security™ through its disclosures.
It's unsurprising that political leaders would want to convince people that the true criminals are those who expose acts of high-level political corruption and criminality, rather than those who perpetrate them. Every political leader would love for that self-serving piety to take hold. But what's startling is how many citizens and, especially, "journalists" now vehemently believe that as well. In light of what WikiLeaks has revealed to the world about numerous governments, just fathom the authoritarian mindset that would lead a citizen -- and especially a "journalist" -- to react with anger that these things have been revealed; to insist that these facts should have been kept concealed and it'd be better if we didn't know; and, most of all, to demand that those who made us aware of it all be punished (the True Criminals) while those who did these things (The Good Authorities) be shielded: more. GREAT list--everything on it deserves a massive criminal investigation
It is very difficult to draw a big picture of crimes that are already massive, but here's a try:
WikiLeaks' Most Terrifying Revelation: Just How Much Our Government Lies to Us 
Wikileaks has shown that our government and military form a 'vast lying machine' that perpetrates mass murder in our name.
AlterNet / By Fred Branfman  January 3, 2011
"Try as I may I can not escape the sound of suffering. Perhaps as an old man I will accept suffering with insouciance. But not now; men in their prime, if they have convictions are tasked to act on them."
-- Julian Assange, 2007 blog entry
Do you believe that it is in Americans' interest to allow a small group of U.S. leaders to unilaterally murder, maim, imprison and/or torture anyone they choose anywhere in the world, without the knowledge let alone oversight of their citizens or the international community? And, despite their proven record of failure to protect America -- from Indochina to Iran to Iraq -- do you believe they should be permitted to clandestinely expand their war-making without informed public debate? If so, you are betraying the principles upon which America was founded, endangering your nation, and displaying a distinctly "unamerican" subservience to unaccountable authority. But if you oppose autocratic power, you are called to support Wikileaks and others trying to limit U.S. Executive Branch mass murder abroad and failure to protect Americans at home.
These two issues became officially linked for the first time when former U.S. Afghan commander General Stanley McChrystal explicitly stated that the murder of civilians increases rather than decreases the numbers of those committed to killing Americans, and actually implemented policies -- since reversed by General Petraeus -- to reduce U.S. murder of civilians. McChrystal said that “for every innocent person you kill, you create 10 new enemies." By so doing he made it clear that killing civilians is not only a moral and war crimes issue, but -- in today's interdependent world -- also threatens U.S. national security. more

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