How the massive document dump plays into US geostrategy; comparisons with the Pentagon Papers; war provocation incidents; Wikileaks Board; Cass Sunstein; Google; In-Q-Tel; Operation Keyhole.
by Noam Chomsky
In These Times
Aug, 3, 2010
The War Logs—a six-year archive of classified military documents about the war in Afghanistan, released on the Internet by the organization WikiLeaks—documents a grim struggle becoming grimmer, from the U.S. perspective. And for the Afghans, a mounting horror.
The War Logs, however valuable, may contribute to the unfortunate and prevailing doctrine that wars are wrong only if they aren’t successful—rather like the Nazis felt after Stalingrad.
RussiaToday | August 11, 2010
Recent sanctions against Iran are an attempt by the US to return the country to its sphere of influence, claims veteran journalist John Pilger. “Iran was a pillar of the American empire in the Middle East. That was swept away in 1979 by the Islamic revolution, and it has been American foreign policy to get that back,” he said. “It has absolutely nothing to do with so-called nuclear weapons. The nuclear power in the Middle East is the fourth biggest military power in the world and that is Israel. It has something like 500 or more nuclear warheads. It is never discussed.” Pilger added that Barack Obama has failed to change the trajectory of US foreign policy and following George W. Bush’s line. “For the first time in US presidential history — it has not happened before — a president has taken the entire defense department bureaucracy, and the Secretary of State for Defense, from a previous discredited administration. We have basically Robert Gates and the same generals running American foreign policy with a lot of help from people of like mind.”
Cindy interviews Ethan McCord, who became an unfortunate star of the Wikileaks “Collateral Murder” video, seen in the video carrying the wounded children from the bullet riddled van and Jud Newborn, PhD, co-author of Sophie Scholl and the White Rose, a companion volume to the recent Oscar-nominated German film, “Sophie Scholl: The Final Days.” (There’s a fascinating PDF Afterword to the book available here.) As the recent and newest Wikileaks revelations fade into undeserved obscurity – accepted and ignored by what was once an anti-war community – I feel I need to yell “WAKE UP” once again. So we’ve elected a new wearer of the Imperial Purple (mainly by virtue of NOT being George W. Bush). That doesn’t mean we can go back to sleep, and just wait for our problems to get fixed. The murder of civilians hasn’t stopped, the looting of our nation’s wealth by corporate arms-merchants hasn’t stopped, and the criminalization of dissent proceeds apace. Continue reading
The Anti-Empire Report
So please tell me again: What’s the war about?
When facts are inconvenient, when international law, human rights and history get in the way, when war crimes can’t easily be justified or explained away, when logic doesn’t help much, the current crop of American political leaders turns to what is now the old reliable: 9/11. We have to fight in Afghanistan because … somehow … it’s tied into what happened on September 11, 2001. Here’s Vice-President Joe Biden: “We know that it was from the space that joins Afghanistan and Pakistan that the attacks of 9/11 occurred.” 1
Here’s Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC): “This is the place [Afghanistan] we were attacked from 9/11.” 2
Aug. 3, 2010
Julian Assange Responds to Increasing US Government Attacks on WikiLeaks
It’s been ten days since the whistleblower website WikiLeaks published the massive archive of classified military records about the war in Afghanistan, but the fallout in Washington and beyond is far from over. Justice Department lawyers are reportedly exploring whether WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange could be charged with violating the Espionage Act of 1917 for publishing the classified Afghan war documents. Meanwhile, investigators in the Army’s criminal division have reportedly questioned two students in Boston about their ties to WikiLeaks and Private First Class Bradley Manning, a leading suspect in the leak. We speak with WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange. [includes rush transcript–partial]
Aug. 2, 2010
Andrew Bacevich on Afghanistan War: “The President Lacks the Guts to Get Out”
Retired US Army colonel and historian Andrew Bacevich joins us for his first interview about his new book, Washington Rules: America’s Path to Permanent War. “The question demands to be asked: Who is more deserving of contempt?” Bacevich asks. “The commander-in-chief who sends young Americans to die for a cause, however misguided, in which he sincerely believes? Or the commander-in-chief who sends young Americans to die for a cause in which he manifestly does not believe and yet refuses to forsake?” [includes rush transcript]
“[H]istory didn’t start at 2001,” said General James Mattis, the latest to be tapped as head of US Central Command, during his confirmation hearing.
He was being questioned by Senator John McCain (R-AZ) before the Senate Armed Services Committee about his impression of the 91,000 documents WikiLeaks posted online and how they would affect the relationships and conflicts in that nearly nine-year old war, as reported in an interview by Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, Transparent Government Tends to Produce Just Government. What a great thought!
By Stephen Foley
NZ Herald News
Aug 2, 2010
A senior volunteer for Wikileaks in the US has been detained, questioned and had his phones seized when he returned to the country from Europe, as the FBI steps up its investigation into the leak of thousands of Afghanistan war secrets to the whistleblower website.
Jacob Appelbaum, who has stood in for Wikileaks founder Julian Assange since he was advised not to travel to the US, spent three hours at a New York airport while customs officers photocopied receipts and searched his laptop, and he was again approached and questioned by FBI officers at a computer hackers conference in Las Vegas.
I am numb, I think.
Since the U.S. Corporate Military Industrial Complex forced me into the World of the Aware after my son’s murder in Iraq, I feel that the news freshly assaults me on a daily basis.
I am numb, I think, from being abused by this Empire on a regular basis for years.
I am numb, I think, because it wears on one to care so deeply when so many citizens of my national community (reader excepted) barely even know we are at war, let alone that we live in a murderous Empire.
July 28, 2010
WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange: “Transparent Government Tends to Produce Just Government”
We spend the hour with Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, talking about the biggest leak in US history: the release of more than 91,000 classified military records on the war in Afghanistan. As the Pentagon announces it is launching a criminal probe into who leaked the documents, Assange asks what about investigating the “war crimes” revealed in the leaked military records? He also talks about the media, why he isn’t coming to the US anytime soon, and what gives him hope. “What keeps us going is our sources. These are the people, presumably, who are inside these organizations, who want change,” Assange says. “They are both heroic figures taking much greater risks than I ever do, and they are pushing and showing that they want change in, in fact, an extremely effective way.” [includes rush transcript]
Updated: July 29, 2010
Remember Sesame Street? Remember the song, “One of these things is not like the other” ? On that theme, I’d call this post, “One of these things is just like the other!”
Since the Wikileaks story about the US gov’t’s failed criminal war on Afghanistan broke this past weekend, I’ve been following the trail of the “truth hemorrhage “… Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks said, in this der Speigel interview, “…There is a legitimate role for secrecy, and there is a legitimate role for openness.
July 27, 2010
- WikiLeaks Founder Says “Evidence of War Crimes” in Afghan War Logs, White House Downplays Leak, Claiming “No Broad New Revelations”
- Guardian Editor on Coverage of Afghan War Logs: European Audience “Troubled More…by the Toll this War is Taking on Innocent People”
- “WikiLeaks Is Not One Person…We Are All the Threat”–Hacker Magazine Editor Says WikiLeaks Is Bigger Than Julian Assange
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