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Comment Re:But isn't the cable real? (Score 1) 669

It seems like what is happening here is that Tsvangirai is trying to cooperate with 'western' governments, and Mugabe is painting this as an evil action which needs to be stopped.

And is it impossible for Mugabe (regardless of anything else about him) to be right? (I refer you to Iran-Contra for an example of how covert US foreign policy operates)

Comment Re:wrong way round (Score 1) 669


Wrong how? WikiLeaks leaked private communications between a force for reform in Zimbabwe and western nations.

Those communications may have irreparably damaged efforts at reform by giving Mugabe and his thugs material to discredit reformers.

How do you know he is a force for reform? I am unaware of any period in history when American diplomats had identified and were helping a force for reform in a foreign country. Do/did US diplomats have secret cables with Ayn San Suu kyi? Garry Kasparov? Liu Xiaobo? Nelson Mandella? Hugo Chavez? Evo Morales? I am guessing not, because that's not how the US government operates. But I am sure we had plenty of "cables" to Saddam Hussein, the Shah of Iran, Pinochet etc.

If some US diplomat has had private communications with a foreign official, the onus is on you to show that he was a reformer, since that communication by itself can be taken as heuristic evidence against that fact.

Comment Re:The Gist (Score 1) 696

Now you are just flat out lying.

I've seen internal redactions within the cables themselves (because unlike you, I don't talk out of my ass -- I've actually looked through several of them). The Pentagon Papers were not held back for any amount of time. Newspapers digested and published them immediately. The same thing is happening with the leaks (journalists gets first crack at them, in case there were failures to do proper redactions.)

Amnesty Intl., did *NOT* rip into Wikileaks. They were under the impression that civilian names were disclosed in the Afghanistan dump, without providing any evidence. As Assange himself points out, there is no evidence or even alleging of harm to anyone by any credible institution. So they asked wikileaks to do something they've always already done (redact names of innocent civilians).

Comment Re:The Gist (Score 1) 696

Oh its outrage against a straw man. Assange himself is constantly asked whether or not he believes in a black and white view to transparency and he always answers no (his standard example is the medical secrets of a private citizen). His actions are consistent with his claims, and wikileaks has clearly redacted when it makes sense, and they have never released anything that amounts to a personal attack on a private citizen.

Comment Re:Secrecy is necessary for Diplomacy (Score 1) 696

Straw man. Wikileaks doesn't publish the logistics of minorities or the minimal secrecy required for people who are doing good works. Why would anyone in such organization be whistle-blowing? Right-wing partisans who wish to attack such good institutions usually don't worry about the anonymizing features of TOR or wikileaks in general -- our media already provides ample cover for the right wing. You example, is not one that would apply to wikileaks, plain and simple.

The simple fact is that Wikileaks has done a better job of public disclosure than any other existing institution on earth. That primarily includes the US government, private corporations and various other governments around the world.

Diplomacy does not include obtaining DNA evidence and phone tapping foreign officials.

Comment Re:Hypocrites (Score 1) 696

You are projecting upon wikileaks things they did not do. They don't just go leaking random bank accounts info. They released two version of the Collateral Murder video; one edited and one not. The US government claimed that this video did not exist, in the investigation of the incident they found no wrong doing, even from the gunner that said "come on, just pick up a weapon".

The government works at our behest. We (Americans) pay taxes for those cables. Those cables *BELONG TO US*. Looking through some of them myself has been somewhat enlightening about how our government's foreign policy works in ways that deceptive election campaigns and government spokespeople and useless civics classes could never tell me.

There is no analogy to revealing the email of a private citizen.

Comment Re:Wikileaks should host it! (Score 1) 90

I don't know if you've noticed or not, but ISPs, DNSs, and a number of governments have been banning and attacking wikileaks.* . Diversifying shows that wikileaks does not stand alone. They should definitely link to it (and there should be a reciprocal link), but hosting is not only unnecessary, but probably counter-productive. People should just help publicize it.

Comment Re:Good Guys or Bad Guys? (Score 2, Insightful) 491

So with my admittedly meager research (reading Slashdot and other sites), I can't figure out if the Wikileaks people are good guys or bad guys. Which is it?

You can't figure it out? You like governments and corporations around the world keeping secrets from citizens at their expense?

The only problem with this years Nobel Peace Prize is that Wikileaks was a better candidate for it. (Tianmen Square was limited to China, while Wikileaks has the potential to change the world.)

For Wikileaks to possibly be in a "bad" category, it would have to do something bad. By what twisted reasoning can you find anything that Wikileaks has done somehow fit into the category of bad? The only people who could possibly suggest that there was anything bad about Wikileaks are bad people who don't like their secrets revealed. They make up lies about the consequences of revealing the secrets. They even have resorted to a smear campaign against Julian Asange. But at the end of the day, you can't find any shred of anything that Wikileaks itself has done that could be in any way construed as "wrong" or "bad".

On the side of "good" it is almost a stupid question. They do the job of reporting what governments are too cowardly and craven to face the public on. They are the megaphone for a conscious' of the myriad whistle blowers who see corruption all around them and are exasperated by the fact that nothing can be done about it, short of this desperate attempt to let the world know what is happening. Wikileaks makes it possible -- it gives whistle blowers the anonymity they need to execute their exposures.

Your question is hardly recognizable as even remotely rational.

Comment Re:srsly govt? (Score 1) 837

You *really* didn't understand that scene from Star Wars did you? Actually as a ghost, Obiwan couldn't do jack. Its the martyrdom factor that ignited Luke to get his revenge against Darth Vader that was the danger. And so too it is with Julian Assange. Hell, I might have to get into this myself if anything happens to him.

Comment Re:What about the insurance file? (Score 2, Interesting) 837

There's one reason why this is a poor method of insurance. Suppose there's somebody out there with an even bigger axe to grind than Assange, who will stop at nothing to get the contents of this "insurance" file released. With over six billion people in the world, and a substantial number of them having a beef with the U.S., it's not beyond the realms of possibility.

The implication here is that if something happens to Assange, then the key gets released. So, it logically follows that if you want the key to be released.......

(For my own safety, I have no interest in the contents of that file. And while I personally think Julian Assange is a self-righteous ass, I don't wish physical harm on him or any of the other people involved with Wikileaks.)

But you have not thought this all the way through. The US itself is a big enough entity that nobody's axe is bigger than theirs. Knowing that someone might want to force Assange to give up the key, its probably in the US's best interest to protect Assange.

Comment Adrian Lamo was a known quantity (Score 1) 347

Unfortunately it seems Julian Asange and Pvt. Manning did not know Adrian Lamo's history. He's already on an FBI watch list, and his previous encounters with hacker activities basically turned him into an "outed hacker". Such people can make careers as counter-intrusion consultants (Phiber Optik, Kevin Mitcnick) or as Journalists/radio personalities (Bernie S, Kevin Poulsen). But they *cannot* go back to grey or black hat hacking, and anything along those lines. They are being watched too carefully. On his interview on the "Off the Hook" radio show, Adrian Lamo was unusually regretful and capitulant when he got "caught" intruding into people's systems. He made no attempt to defend his actions. This should have been the first clue that this guy was basically a state actor or something of that nature. Given how effective WikiLeaks has been, it is shocking to me that they were so lax in security as to allow someone like Adrian Lamo anywhere near their crown jewels. Now Manning is going to be a fall guy, and iterpol/the FBI has a ridiculous premise for subpoenaing Julian Asange. This whole cock up sucks so much ass. Why did Julian Asange feel the need to go public? Why did they trust some outed hacker? Along with cryptome.org, Wikileaks has been *such* an important resource for free speech and open society movements everywhere. I sincerely hope that it does go down in flames from all this crap.

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