Wednesday, December 8, 2010


What more can one say about Wikileaks? It's under heavy fire from the US; PayPal, Mastercard, and Visa are refusing to remit contributions to this website, thereby re enforcing the campaign to drive it into bankruptcy without recourse to a Chapter 11 bankruptcy unless it agrees to restructure along lines acceptable to the US government; Julian Assange is in a British gaol awaiting extradiction to Sweden in what looks as though it will turn into a show trial and Stockholm's surrendering him to the US; the US is trying to amend a 1917 espionage act so that it can 'legally' try Assange...and the list of particulars goes on and on.
It is true that the gradual release of US diplomatic cables has embarrassed the Obama administration. It has publicly put on a brave face saying that the very low level 'secret' or recently declassified info, has not detered them from the appointed rounds of conducting foreign relations. On the other hand, it has raised a firestorm of blather from elected officials and the chatting classes, some of whom have crossed the limits of sanity by calling for the murder of Assange. So much for the respect of law and order!
On the other hand, it has offered a peek into what US foreign service officers are thinking and saying below the radar in stark contrast to the sugar coated language of official stated policy. While it may offer a guffaw here and a hearty chuckle there, the release of the cables do catch US diplomacy with its pants down. Deep cherry red confusion and abashment has followed to mop up the damages.
As the smoke slowly clears, the question of whom to blame come more and more to the centre. The US military are holding Bradley Manning a low level NCO conditions similar to detainees at Gitmo [Guatanamo],for 'alledgedly' passing the documents to Wikileaks. Yet the Obama administration has brought no charges against him.
Julian Assange is the real target for Wikileaks, a website consacrated ot leaking secrets and for striving for transparency and truth in government, an unpardonable sin of 'lese majeste'.
Yet saying this begs the question of culpability. Well, a few hours ago, an answer came from an US ally Ken Rudd, former Australian prime minister and now foreign minister. He put the burden of guilt squarely on the shoulders of the US for its 'laissez faire' attitude to its own security apparatus which is open to a cast of a hundred thousands at least.
With such negligence, some may and do say that the US is paying the price for its own ineptitude.
How fast will Obama and any occupant of the White House will repair the current damage, we cannot say for sure. At present, the US is wild eyed with the passion to emasculate Wikileaks if not shut it down completely; to convict Manning and lock up Assange for life if possible; and to make nice to all the countries that it made brutual but let's us admit honest assessments about.
Like the lumbering ox, the US is slow to change its ways?

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