Wikileaks

The past few posts on my blog have been about modern colonialism and the continuing dominance of the west over the global south. How lucky am I that now I have proof – in the form of thousands of exposed US cables. Wikileaks (what an amazing, amazing man!) has just released tons of secret documents that have revealed information about global politics, in particular the relationship between the US and other countries. I’ve been reading about the leaks on Common Dreams (a great alternative news source) and here are some reflections from Robert Fisk, MIddle East analyst:

There is virtually no talk (so far, at least) of illegal Jewish colonial settlements on the West Bank, of Israeli “outposts”, of extremist Israeli “settlers” whose homes now smallpox the occupied Palestinian West Bank – of the vast illegal system of land theft which lies at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian war. And incredibly, all kinds of worthy US diplomats grovel and kneel before Israel’s demands – many of them apparently fervent supporters of Israel – as Mossad bosses and Israel military intelligence agents read their wish-list to their benefactors.

That wonderful Palestinian journalist Marwan Bishara was right when he said at the weekend that these US diplomatic papers were of more interest to anthropologists than political scientists; for they are a record of a deviant way of thinking about the Middle East. If King Abdullah (the crumbling Saudi version, as opposed to the Plucky Little Jordanian King version) really called Ahmadinejad Hitler and Sarkozy’s adviser called Iran “a fascist state”, it shows only that the US State Department is still obsessed with the Second World War.

Another news story is about the supposed nuclear weapon that the US accused Iran of possessing, which apparently does not exist (surprise surprise):

WASHINGTON – A diplomatic cable from last February released by Wikileaks provides a detailed account of how Russian specialists on the Iranian ballistic missile programme refuted the U.S. suggestion that Iran has missiles that could target European capitals or intends to develop such a capability.

A key Wikileaks document which should have resulted in stories calling into question the thrust of the Obama administration’s ballistic missile defence policy in Europe based on an alleged Iranian missile threat has produced a spate of stories supporting the existing Iranian threat narrative. (AFP/Wojtek Radwanski) In fact, the Russians challenged the very existence of the mystery missile the U.S. claims Iran acquired from North Korea.

Interestingly, no major US newspaper reported this cable! So basically Americans (and others) continue to believe that the US claim about this weapon is true, despite the fact that Russian observers said it did not exist.

We see from these leaks that 1. Palestine doesn’t matter; 2. how important Israel is to the US; and 3. Obama is basically continuing Bush’s attack on the Middle East by insisting that Iran has nuclear capabilities, a claim that has been disputed by other sources.

What do you think about these leaks? Which were your favourite? Do you think they will change anything in the global geopolitical system, or will it all die down and go back to the way it was?

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16 thoughts on “Wikileaks

  1. On a mailing list i am part of, they claim that these leaks are Zionistmade..because they dont show Israel in any bad way..they instead try to give blame to the arabs so that the iranians would hate them, something that even Ahmadinjaad has claimed as he said we have no issued with our muslim brothers.
    People in teh USA even want death sentence to the people who posted this information. What amazes me that the world is so silent, so accepting of all these things that we find out.
    None says stop to the USA and its politics.

    What if we had found out that muslims were behind espionage or that they were doing these things that the USA has been found doing? Western world poltics if filled of hypocracy..

  2. Many Americans claim these leaks threaten homeland security. I think it sounds more like prejudice and gossip, and I completely agree it is most interesting for cultural anthropologists.

  3. “How lucky am I that now I have proof – in the form of thousands of exposed US cables. Wikileaks (what an amazing, amazing man!)…”

    I’ve said this before elsewhere, but feel compelled to say it here again.

    The thing about people in general is that when you like or adore someone so much, everything he does is good in your eyes—even if actually it’s not. And even if you did realize that his acts are immoral and wrong, you will always try to justify them with many excuses so that he will somehow end up appearing like a good person. So, for example, if the person tortured others, or enslaved or raped women etc, you will find ways to explain why he was not wrong when doing all those things.

    But the opposite is also true—when you hate someone’s guts so much, then you will hate everything he does, even if what he’s doing is good. And when someone comes up with something which appears to support your suspicions about this guy you hate so much, you will be quick to believe that information, even if the accused party denies the accusations.

    I must admit that I’m not so well-informed about this particular matter, and although I’m not such a big fan of the USA, I’m resisting the mechanical temptation to jump to conclusion on who’s telling lies here. It may be that the USA is lying. It may be that the Wikileaks fellow is lying. Or it may be both parties have lied here and there.

    I wonder, Sara, if evidence could be found to show that the Jullian Assange chap is the one who lied, would you be prepared to accept it?

    • Yes Cornelius, I would. However, and I think everyone who is well-versed on this topic would agree, that is highly unlikely.

      Even if he were lying, did the US not invade Iraq illegally? Did they not occupy Afghanistan and cause a massive security situation? So why do you find it difficult to believe the things I posted? About Israel, I don’t even know where to start. I find it interesting that a lot of people tend to ignore anything that incriminates Israel.

      By the way, the US *admitted *these cables were real – they even demanded that they be withheld etc, and now the site has been closed because it was being attacked by cyber viruses.

      Maybe we just have different views on global politics, but for me, states NEVER act except in self-interest, and sometimes in the interests of their people. This goes for Arab states, European states, and America.

      • “Yes Cornelius, I would.”

        I am happy to know that!

        “Even if he were lying, did the US not invade Iraq illegally?”

        If he were lying, your so-called “proof” crumbles to the ground, and there is no meaning to this post. I’m not disputing the illegal invasion of Iraq.

        “Did they not occupy Afghanistan and cause a massive security situation? So why do you find it difficult to believe the things I posted? About Israel, I don’t even know where to start. I find it interesting that a lot of people tend to ignore anything that incriminates Israel.”

        I never said otherwise about Afghanistan; and I never said I’m finding it difficult to believe the things you posted.

        The Muslim world believes that people are ignoring “anything that incriminates Israel”, because you would expect some sort of military retaliation or some kind of harsh punishment on Israel to convince yourselves that people are not ignoring what’s going on. You’d be surprised of the number of people who don’t like what’s going on but can do hardly anything other than condemning the act. But of course that’s not good enough, is it? You want an eye for an eye.

        “By the way, the US *admitted *these cables were real”

        I said “…you will be quick to believe the information even if the accused party denies the accusation”, but I did not say the States did indeed deny the cables. You should let your mind speak, not your heart. Because the heart may be blind sometimes; or influenced by emotions.

        • I don’t think an eye for an eye is a good solution for the Israeli Palestinian conflict. All I meant was that from my own experience more people tend to be pro Israeli than neutral or por-Palestinian.

          • I don’t know about your part of the world. But if my impression of the people of my country is correct, I think the majority of Malaysians are against the aggressions by the Israelis. However, perhaps people would say that that is quite expected, since Malaysia is a Muslim country.

            I can only say that I am against military conflicts regardless of who initiates them first, rich or poor country. Almost always the weak, e.g. women and children are the victims.

  4. Just an update, he is being investigated for raping two women and sexually molesting them while they worked for him. These women were volunteers, I believe, and did not even know each other. Supposedly this happened in Sweden and the authorities there have him under heavy investigation. Buh bye wiki leaks.

    Tragic, or convenient? Maybe we’ll never know.

    • Actually when he was accused of rape, they arrested him and he was released after 5 hours because the head of Sweden’s police did not find any case. The investigations continue, however. It seems convenient since the accusation came 2 days before he released his last batch of documents. But then again, who knows?

      Sent from my iPad

  5. I don’t think the US understands the gravity of the situation here. Wiki-leaks will never be erased from the memory of the int’l community. I think my ideas about the US administration and how they see the world were reaffirmed.

    The thing is wiki-leaks doesn’t only involved the US, it is also about what the rest of the world is telling the US. They really document every single statement made by any leader, is this blackmail?

    For example, one of the documents was about Egypt trying to pressure the US to postpone the referendum in Sudan. I found it offensive that Egypt is trying to get involved in such an important event in Sudan and also, does Egypt think that the US has the power to postpone the referendum?

    I hope this makes sense!

    • On the whole, I’d say I agree with your views on this matter.

      The only thing I beg to differ is that I’m absolutely convinced that the US understands perfectly well the gravity of the situation. Hence its reaction to the Wikileaks revelations.

      What I find disappointing—if I’m getting the correct information—is that some people are calling for the assassination of the Assange fellow. These same people are probably those who have been condemning the Muslim terrorists because of their tendency to shut people up in the same way.

  6. My Syrian friend has enjoyed the leaks not because much of what the US has done is a surprise, but he likes that the Arab leaders’ hypocrisy has been exposed. He also mentions how many of the US diplomats seem to think as if they are Israelis.

    My favorite story thus far – and I’ve not read many – is that shows like Desperate Housewives have influenced Saudis against violent jihad. Apparently Hollywood is much more effective than US propaganda that the government has paid billions for.

    I like to think the women of Wisteria Lane are fighting terrorism one half-naked lady at a time. 🙂

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