How is it that what Wikileaks has done is different from what major newspapers/media outlets have done for generations? That is, recieve sensitive information from voluntary sources and then publish it and then protect the identity of the sources.
If Wikileaks and JA are crucified then what should be done about the editors of major media outlets that have done and do the same thing? It is a dangerous situation for free speech and democracy if the whistleblower idea is shot....isnt it?
That was the Obama administration talking and they are retreating from that dumb idea. Obama is weak on national defense. No talking point here. I am former military and I can't believe the stuff that is disclosed that cause harm to our missions. There are secrets that must remain secret.
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At a bare minimum, the government should not be the final arbiter of what the government can and can't get away with.
I just wish there were an American with balls as big as Julian Assange who would look at this stuff from the perspective of strengthening America rather than tearing it down. JA is an anarchist and as such his only goal is to sow the seeds of chaos. If this information were to be in the hands of anyone, I would rather it be an anarchist than a conservative or a liberal.
I think he may be the most dangerous man in the world to people in power. Every government in the world is scared to death of him. He's no threat to me.
It is certainly illegal to steal information, the question is whether it is illegal to make use of this information.
There is a funny case here in Germany:
The German government bought information that was stolen from banks located in Liechtenstein and Switzerland, and used this stolen information to find high net-worth individuals who had not declared their income correctly. Great effort to cut tax evasion.
If a private organization or a physical person uses information that was obtained illegally, it is probably a crime.
If a government uses information that was obtained illegally, that is no problem.
This is one of the reasons that nobody believes in governments anymore.
Otherwise the information disseminated has more or less the quality of gossip. Maybe interesting for historians because it sheds some light on how the US diplomacy is working. I have read some of those reports concerning the US opinion on German politics. The head of the office of the German Foreign Minister was dismissed today, because he was too eager to communicate his insight to his US counterparts. He did not expect that the US administration would not be able to protect that information.
It is the ultimate Waterloo of diplomacy, but will have little impact on the overall relations between the US and Europe.