Wikileaks - Afghanistan - & Role of Media (1 Viewer)

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http://journalism.nyu.edu/pubzone/weblogs/pressthink/2010/07/26/wikileaks_afghan.html
The Afghanistan War Logs Released by Wikileaks, the World's First Stateless News Organization

"In media history up to now, the press is free to report on what the powerful wish to keep secret because the laws of a given nation protect it. But Wikileaks is able to report on what the powerful wish to keep secret because the logic of the Internet permits it. This is new."
http://www.openculture.com/2010/07/inside_the_secret_world_of_wikileaks.html

*
WikiLeaks has done it again. This weekend, the whistle-blowing website*released 92,000 military documents that vividly illustrate why the US military campaign in Afghanistan has achieved so little success. Among other things, the release shines a light on Pakistan’s intelligence apparatus, which has provided strategic support to the Taliban , helping it coordinate attacks against US troops and assassinate Afghani leaders. (Meanwhile, Pakistan officially claims to be an ally of the US.) The founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, called this release “the nearest analogue to the Pentagon Papers” published during the Vietnam War. “It provides a whole map, if you like, through time, of what has happened during this war.”
6. From an editor’s note : “At the request of the White House, The Times also urged WikiLeaks to withhold any harmful material from its Web site.” There’s the new balance of power, right there. In the revised picture we find the state, which holds the secrets but is powerless to prevent their release; the stateless news organization, deciding how to release them; and the national newspaper in the middle , negotiating the terms of legitimacy between these two actors.
*
7. If you’re a whistle blower with explosive documents, to whom would you rather give them? A newspaper with a terrestrial address organized under the laws of a nation that could try to force the reporter you contacted to reveal your name, and that may or may not run the documents you’ve delivered to them online…. or Wikileaks, which has no address, answers no subpoenas and promises to run the full cache if they can be verified as real? (And they’re expert in encryption, too.)

Last week, it was the Washington Post’s big series, Top Secret America , two years in the making. It reported on the massive security shadowland that has arisen since 09/11. The Post basically showed that there is no accountability, no knowledge at the center of what the system as a whole is doing, and too much “product” to make intelligent use of. We’re wasting billions upon billions of dollars on an intelligence system that does not work. It’s an explosive finding but the explosive reactions haven’t followed, not because the series didn’t do its job, but rather: the job of fixing what is broken would break the system responsible for such fixes.
 

Rickboy

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It is going to be VERY interesting to see how things pan out on this.
 

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I'm gonna give kudos to Blackadder on this, because as much as I hate him for being smarter than me, he's been saying much of the stuff that's leaked out for months.

I'm guessing BA is probably the source of the leaks and is about to get an alien probe visit from Langley this weekend. ;)
 

blackadder

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I'm gonna give kudos to Blackadder on this, because as much as I hate him for being smarter than me, he's been saying much of the stuff that's leaked out for months.

I'm guessing BA is probably the source of the leaks and is about to get an alien probe visit from Langley this weekend. ;)
My track record of predictions is pretty good.

And I'm a modest person.

But I haven't missed on much of what has happened in this decade, because it's pretty easy to see what the goals are. Tune out the rhetoric about freedom, democracy, nation building etc. Those are just the fig leafs to cover age old behaviors of Great Powers that don't change much.

But I think even DD has agreed with most of my analyses and predictions. He just happens to believe in and support all the antics, so he runs rhetorical interference for the weak justifications put forth for the polcies.

But deep down he knows that this is all a coherent long term strategy for Eurasia and the Middle East and it has little to do with any credible "threat" to the United States and a lot to do with "geostrategy" and sitting on top of the oil and the future oil transit routes, with the Iraelis piggybacking on all this to take as much territory as they can.

If you believe the United States is spending a few trillion $$$ and putting hundreds of thousands of troops and mercenaries in Central Asia simply out of altruism, I have a bridge to sell you.
 

Jeff Miller

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But deep down he knows that this is all a coherent long term strategy for Eurasia and the Middle East and it has little to do with any credible "threat" to the United States and a lot to do with "geostrategy" and sitting on top of the oil and the future oil transit routes, with the Iraelis piggybacking on all this to take as much territory as they can.
I've been saying basically the same thing since day one. the purpose of invading afgnaistan and Iraq was nothing so simplistic as removing a leader, it was about changing the face of the middle east. to remake it in way where a good % of it would be a significant US ally eventually in whatever for of strategic or economic form that may take.

Arguable, we come pretty close to that in Iraq, Afganistan, not so much, but that probably has more to do (speaking very generally) that Afganistan really isn't a nation in the sense that most of the world's nations are organized as.

Now as for the oil thing, there's no ignoring that there are benefits there, but was it really the driving force behind it all? i don't think so. I think the idea of establishing allies in the middle east, like we have allies in Europe, is a good idea. The methods of implementation however, will be debated for decades to come.

Its disapointing that afganistan has turned into a complete cluster. I'm little torn on the leaks thing. The military has to keep secrets to be effective, but at what point does it policy become ineffective and its failure isn't effecting proactive change, but just hiding failures for poltical reasons? that line seems very blurry with little or no distinction.
 

blackadder

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I've been saying basically the same thing since day one. the purpose of invading afgnaistan and Iraq was nothing so simplistic as removing a leader, it was about changing the face of the middle east. to remake it in way where a good % of it would be a significant US ally eventually in whatever for of strategic or economic form that may take.

Arguable, we come pretty close to that in Iraq, Afganistan, not so much, but that probably has more to do (speaking very generally) that Afganistan really isn't a nation in the sense that most of the world's nations are organized as.

Now as for the oil thing, there's no ignoring that there are benefits there, but was it really the driving force behind it all? i don't think so. I think the idea of establishing allies in the middle east, like we have allies in Europe, is a good idea. The methods of implementation however, will be debated for decades to come.

Its disapointing that afganistan has turned into a complete cluster. I'm little torn on the leaks thing. The military has to keep secrets to be effective, but at what point does it policy become ineffective and its failure isn't effecting proactive change, but just hiding failures for poltical reasons? that line seems very blurry with little or no distinction.
There is no intent to "remake" the Middle East, other than to make sure Iraq is not a focal point for Arab nationalism, funded by Iraqi petrodollars. Kurds will now funnel off part of that, and Shiite Arabs too.

That Iraq is left an incoherent mess squabbling ineffectually with itself is part of the plan.

There are no altruistic aims among the formulators of the policy, but they certainly willing to exploit useful idiots along the way who wish to build schools and "development" projects that never actually get off the ground, or crumble before they can be used.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/meast/02/02/iraq.reconstruction/index.html

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/08/24/AR2007082402307.html

http://community.nytimes.com/comments/www.nytimes.com/2010/03/14/world/middleeast/14reconstruct.html
 
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The wikileaks quandary presents an evaluation of what 'news' media is and what function it serves (and ultimately how it is controlled).

Afghanistan, while relevant, is just the tool in which to present the assessment.

(First hand) Information is being presented (without censure or fear of reprisal). What does media represent in the West? How big of a pillar is media within politics (and campaign financing)?


This begets another question, when discussing issues (let's say on here) would you rather talk with:

someone IGNORANT (not knowing) of the facts or

someone that is MISINFORMED of events/facts?
 

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if somebody familiar with this story could briefly summarize the contents of the leaked documents, it would be greatly appreciated. it doesnt have to be very intensive i would just like to know what the highlights and important revelations are.
 

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if somebody familiar with this story could briefly summarize the contents of the leaked documents, it would be greatly appreciated. it doesnt have to be very intensive i would just like to know what the highlights and important revelations are.
Here, see if this helps:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/atlantic/5biggestrevelationsofwikileaksdocuments4453

5 Biggest Revelations of Wikileaks Documents

Pakistani Intelligence Possibly Aiding Taliban

Drones Less Effective Than Claimed

30 Years Later, Taliban Still Have Stingers

U.S. and Afghan Officials Covering Up Civilian Deaths

Bin Laden Match-Making for Insurgents
That last one is kind of silly, if you ask me.
 

BHM

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Pakistani Intelligence Possibly Aiding Taliban: No joke

Drones Less Effective Than Claimed: And? They are still less expensive than manned planes and there is no worry of loss of a pilots life.The technlogy is fairly new and will improve.

30 Years Later, Taliban Still Have Stingers: And? It is war and they are using whatever weapons they may have. If it is Stinger missiles given by the US 30 years ago or slingshots given by the Romans 1000 years ago, what is the difference?

U.S. and Afghan Officials Covering Up Civilian Deaths: UNAMA Human Rights (HR) recorded a total of 2,412 civilian deaths between 01
January and 31 December 2009. The number of deaths are in the news, why would there be a cover up ofsome? We all know civilians are being killed. It is war after all.Bin Laden Match-Making for Insurgents: ???



Based on these five "5 Biggest Revelations of Wikileaks Documents", I just do not see any earth shattering news here. Am I missing something? We are at war here, planes go down and civilians are killed.

The one big thing I see coming out is that we should have either leveled Iraq and Afghanistan or stayed the hell out. This crap of seeking out selective targets while trying to protect civilians just is not a good combination and will never work.
 

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