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  #161  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maz
You may be right - this is a confused and confusing issue for me.
It's probably a combination of your age, and the extremely cold weather.
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  #162  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by brighton_eagle
It's probably a combination of your age, and the extremely cold weather.
Heh heh - when was the last time you got a late morning in bed?
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  #163  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maz
Heh heh - when was the last time you got a late morning in bed?
Depends on your definition of late.

I slept in till 8:30am the other day. That was pretty good going. The kids tend to occupy themselves in the morning, but the dog needs letting out before then really.

So anyway, what you are saying is that even with little sleep I'm still more alert than you?
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  #164  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by brighton_eagle
So anyway, what you are saying is that even with little sleep I'm still more alert than you?
Yup - you are a complete lert.
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  #165  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maz
Yup - you are a complete lert.
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  #166  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave
wikileaks didn't leak anything

just a thought
Looks like the To view the link you have to Register or Login with you.

Just a chunder.

Australia's foreign minister has said the US is to blame for the release of thousands of diplomatic cables on Wikileaks, not its Australian founder, Julian Assange.

Kevin Rudd said the release raised questions about US security.
Mr Rudd said he did not "give a damn" about criticism of him in the cables.
Mr Assange, arrested in the UK over sex crime allegations in Sweden, has accused the Australian government of "disgraceful pandering" to the US.
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  #167  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:55 PM
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The leaks point to the coup against Rudd being set up by the US. This is probably him getting in some payback.
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  #168  
Old 08-12-2010, 01:56 PM
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main site seems "unavailable" but loads of mirror sites

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  #169  
Old 08-12-2010, 03:19 PM
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A point of view which I wholeheartedly agree with in the Indy today:

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"Johann Hari: This case must not obscure what WikiLeaks has told us

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

'We will never unlearn or unknow the great truths that Julian Assange has brought to the world'


Every one of us owes a debt to Julian Assange. Thanks to him, we now know that our governments are pursuing policies that place you and your family in considerably greater danger. Wikileaks has informed us they have secretly launched war on yet another Muslim country, sanctioned torture, kidnapped innocent people from the streets of free countries and intimidated the police into hushing it up, and covered up the killing of 15,000 civilians – five times the number killed on 9/11. Each one of these acts has increased the number of jihadis. We can only change these policies if we know about them – and Assange has given us the black-and-white proof.

Each of the wikileaks revelations has been carefully weighed to ensure there is a public interest in disclosing it. Of the more than 250,000 documents they hold, they have released fewer than 1000 – and each of those has had the names of informants, or any information that could place anyone at risk, removed. The information they have released covers areas where our governments are defying the will of their own citizens, and hiding the proof from them.

Here’s some examples. The Obama administration has been denying that it has expanded the current “war” to yet another country, Yemen. Now we know that is a lie. Ali Abdulah Saleh, the Yemeni dictator, brags in these cables to a US diplomat: “We’ll continue to say the bombs are ours, not yours.” The counter-insurgency expert David Kilcullen, who until recently was a senior advisor to General Petreaus in Iraq, estimates that for every one jihadi killed in these bombings, they kill fifty innocent people. How would we react if this was happening in Britain? How many of us would become deranged by grief and resolve to fight back, even against the other side’s women and children? Bombing to end jihadism is like smoking to end lung cancer – a cure that worsens the disease.


The US and British governments told us they invaded Iraq, in part, because they were appalled that the Iraqi government tortured its own citizens. Tony Blair often mentioned “Saddam’s torture chambers” in making his case for the war. Yet these leaked documents show that as soon as our governments were in charge, the policy of burning, electrocuting and raping people started again – and they consciously chose a policy of not objecting and not investigating. Modern jihadism was born in the torture chambers of Egypt in the 1950s. A lot more will have been made in the torture chambers of Baghdad since 2003. Some of it has already exploded onto our streets – the attempted Glasgow airport bombing was by Iraqis who said they were “resisting” the use of torture in their country. There will be more.

The cables reveal how this grief and murderous rage is being spread across the Muslim world, while we lie about it. Here’s just one example. US troops blew up an Afghan village called Azizabad, and killed 95 people, 50 of them children. None were al Qaeda, or even Taliban. They knew what they’d done – yet in public they kept insisting they’d killed “militants”, and even accused the local Afghan villagers of “fabricat[ing] such evidence as grave sites.”

Wikileaks has exposed a terrifying casualness in our governments about ramping up the risk against us. Indeed, they show that the US government knows Saudi Arabia is “the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups world-wide”, but our leaders continue to (literally) hold hands with them, because their oil pipelines run our way. They show a startling contempt for democracy too: when the Honduran President, Manuel Zelaya, was kidnapped by a far right clique because he had increased the minimum wage and redistributed wealth to the poor, the US embassy confirmed privately that it was “clearly illegal”. Yet the US administration refused to say this publicly, instead urging “reconciliation” with the junta their own diplomats were calling “totally illegitimate.”

For Britain’s politicians, the documents offer a long-needed slap in the face. Successive governments, of all parties, support these destructive US policies because they believe we have influence with the Americans. But these cables show the Americans literally laugh at them and their sycophancy, describing their servility in mocking tones in cables back home, saying “it would be humorous if it were not so corrosive.”

Most people in the US and Britain oppose these policies. We are better than our politicians. But we can only stop them – and the risk they pose to innocent people across the world, including us – if we know about them. Assange has made that possible, at great risk to his liberty and his life. So this is a move that enhances our national security. Of course, there are people who claim he has “blood on his hands” – but where is there evidence? It is months now since the first cables were leaked, and they have found not a single person who has been even threatened as a result of the leaks – except Assange, whose death is being incited by many of America’s leading politicians.

There is a squalid little irony when you see people who are literally bombing innocent civilians every day feverishly accuse a man who has never touched a weapon in his life of being “covered in blood.” Wikileaks have hurt nobody. They redacted sensitive names. They held back any cables that could expose anyone to risk. They asked the Pentagon to help them by privately explaining where they believed there could be a danger – only to be rebuffed.

Of course, it is possible Julian Assange did this good, noble thing, and is also a rapist. I do not believe in reflexively dismissing rape claims by any woman, in any circumstances. Bill Clinton was the victim of a right-wing smear campaign and many of us dismissed the allegations of sexual assault against him – but now, years later, one of the women who came forward, Kathleen Willey, has earned nothing from her allegations, remains a left-wing Democrat, and seems to have a very plausible case.

Here’s what we know. There is a long history of the CIA viciously smearing people who dare to cross the US state machinery. There is a strong chance the claims against Assange is another case of it. But there is also a long history of otherwise admirable men turning out to be rapists, and there’s a chance this is another case of it. This should be tested in a court of law – and the trial should be watched very careful to make sure it’s not being rigged by bribes or threats.

Whatever that judgment turns out to be, we will never unlearn or unknow the great truths Julian Assange has brought us. The hysterical state-power hacks saying he is “a terrorist” should go tell it to all the tortured Iraqis, all the terrorized Honduran democrats, and all the bombed Yemenis whose story he has – at last – brought out from the sealed-away world of Top Secret cables. "
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  #170  
Old 08-12-2010, 03:34 PM
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Good piece.
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  #171  
Old 08-12-2010, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TAK
A point of view which I wholeheartedly agree with in the Indy today:

To view the link you have to Register or Login

"Johann Hari: This case must not obscure what WikiLeaks has told us

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

'We will never unlearn or unknow the great truths that Julian Assange has brought to the world'


Every one of us owes a debt to Julian Assange. Thanks to him, we now know that our governments are pursuing policies that place you and your family in considerably greater danger. Wikileaks has informed us they have secretly launched war on yet another Muslim country, sanctioned torture, kidnapped innocent people from the streets of free countries and intimidated the police into hushing it up, and covered up the killing of 15,000 civilians – five times the number killed on 9/11. Each one of these acts has increased the number of jihadis. We can only change these policies if we know about them – and Assange has given us the black-and-white proof.

Each of the wikileaks revelations has been carefully weighed to ensure there is a public interest in disclosing it. Of the more than 250,000 documents they hold, they have released fewer than 1000 – and each of those has had the names of informants, or any information that could place anyone at risk, removed. The information they have released covers areas where our governments are defying the will of their own citizens, and hiding the proof from them.

Here’s some examples. The Obama administration has been denying that it has expanded the current “war” to yet another country, Yemen. Now we know that is a lie. Ali Abdulah Saleh, the Yemeni dictator, brags in these cables to a US diplomat: “We’ll continue to say the bombs are ours, not yours.” The counter-insurgency expert David Kilcullen, who until recently was a senior advisor to General Petreaus in Iraq, estimates that for every one jihadi killed in these bombings, they kill fifty innocent people. How would we react if this was happening in Britain? How many of us would become deranged by grief and resolve to fight back, even against the other side’s women and children? Bombing to end jihadism is like smoking to end lung cancer – a cure that worsens the disease.


The US and British governments told us they invaded Iraq, in part, because they were appalled that the Iraqi government tortured its own citizens. Tony Blair often mentioned “Saddam’s torture chambers” in making his case for the war. Yet these leaked documents show that as soon as our governments were in charge, the policy of burning, electrocuting and raping people started again – and they consciously chose a policy of not objecting and not investigating. Modern jihadism was born in the torture chambers of Egypt in the 1950s. A lot more will have been made in the torture chambers of Baghdad since 2003. Some of it has already exploded onto our streets – the attempted Glasgow airport bombing was by Iraqis who said they were “resisting” the use of torture in their country. There will be more.

The cables reveal how this grief and murderous rage is being spread across the Muslim world, while we lie about it. Here’s just one example. US troops blew up an Afghan village called Azizabad, and killed 95 people, 50 of them children. None were al Qaeda, or even Taliban. They knew what they’d done – yet in public they kept insisting they’d killed “militants”, and even accused the local Afghan villagers of “fabricat[ing] such evidence as grave sites.”

Wikileaks has exposed a terrifying casualness in our governments about ramping up the risk against us. Indeed, they show that the US government knows Saudi Arabia is “the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups world-wide”, but our leaders continue to (literally) hold hands with them, because their oil pipelines run our way. They show a startling contempt for democracy too: when the Honduran President, Manuel Zelaya, was kidnapped by a far right clique because he had increased the minimum wage and redistributed wealth to the poor, the US embassy confirmed privately that it was “clearly illegal”. Yet the US administration refused to say this publicly, instead urging “reconciliation” with the junta their own diplomats were calling “totally illegitimate.”

For Britain’s politicians, the documents offer a long-needed slap in the face. Successive governments, of all parties, support these destructive US policies because they believe we have influence with the Americans. But these cables show the Americans literally laugh at them and their sycophancy, describing their servility in mocking tones in cables back home, saying “it would be humorous if it were not so corrosive.”

Most people in the US and Britain oppose these policies. We are better than our politicians. But we can only stop them – and the risk they pose to innocent people across the world, including us – if we know about them. Assange has made that possible, at great risk to his liberty and his life. So this is a move that enhances our national security. Of course, there are people who claim he has “blood on his hands” – but where is there evidence? It is months now since the first cables were leaked, and they have found not a single person who has been even threatened as a result of the leaks – except Assange, whose death is being incited by many of America’s leading politicians.

There is a squalid little irony when you see people who are literally bombing innocent civilians every day feverishly accuse a man who has never touched a weapon in his life of being “covered in blood.” Wikileaks have hurt nobody. They redacted sensitive names. They held back any cables that could expose anyone to risk. They asked the Pentagon to help them by privately explaining where they believed there could be a danger – only to be rebuffed.

Of course, it is possible Julian Assange did this good, noble thing, and is also a rapist. I do not believe in reflexively dismissing rape claims by any woman, in any circumstances. Bill Clinton was the victim of a right-wing smear campaign and many of us dismissed the allegations of sexual assault against him – but now, years later, one of the women who came forward, Kathleen Willey, has earned nothing from her allegations, remains a left-wing Democrat, and seems to have a very plausible case.

Here’s what we know. There is a long history of the CIA viciously smearing people who dare to cross the US state machinery. There is a strong chance the claims against Assange is another case of it. But there is also a long history of otherwise admirable men turning out to be rapists, and there’s a chance this is another case of it. This should be tested in a court of law – and the trial should be watched very careful to make sure it’s not being rigged by bribes or threats.

Whatever that judgment turns out to be, we will never unlearn or unknow the great truths Julian Assange has brought us. The hysterical state-power hacks saying he is “a terrorist” should go tell it to all the tortured Iraqis, all the terrorized Honduran democrats, and all the bombed Yemenis whose story he has – at last – brought out from the sealed-away world of Top Secret cables. "
What an excellent article. Not a word of that can be disagreed with
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  #172  
Old 08-12-2010, 03:51 PM
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Agreed.
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  #173  
Old 08-12-2010, 04:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kolinkins
What an excellent article. Not a word of that can be disagreed with
True, but someone on here will - just wait a bit.
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  #174  
Old 08-12-2010, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by kolinkins
What an excellent article. Not a word of that can be disagreed with
You haven't met Maz?
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  #175  
Old 08-12-2010, 05:29 PM
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"Each of the wikileaks revelations has been carefully weighed to ensure there is a public interest in disclosing it. Of the more than 250,000 documents they hold, they have released fewer than 1000 – and each of those has had the names of informants, or any information that could place anyone at risk, removed. The information they have released covers areas where our governments are defying the will of their own citizens, and hiding the proof from them."

I disagree with this. It is such a sweeping statement to make. Yes, some information now in the public domain is warranted. No reasonable person can support cover-ups of illegal acts or wrong doing.

But for every 'good' leak, there are others that have obviously been released in an attempt to gain publicity, embarrass and sensationalise. I fail to see why the entire world has a right to know -

1/ The key facilities for a nation's security
2/ The health of individuals (i.e. the Bolivian Presidente may have a nose tumour or whatever)
3/ Privately made comments regarding world leaders and sensitive diplomatic opinions/judgements
4/ The pager records of 9/11 victims to their loved ones
5/ Nato defence contingency plans (all countries have them and they are best kept secret in order to avoid tensions when one is suddenly revealed)

That's just a few that i have seen.

Confidentiality is part of the diplomatic process. A state may have concerns about an ally for example. Publishing things like that simply create an uneccesary tension. If experts believe their opinion will be released and open to public airing, those opinions will be pinched, limited or even kept silent.

Many leaks are not in the 'public interest' unless the definition of 'public interest' is gossip and tittle-tattle (which in the internet age is becoming the norm).

We are an ally of the US and like it or not, it will stay that way. The fact that other states may stop sharing intelligence or opinions with the US (such as Turkey, Algeria, Pakistan etc) out of fear of leaks is potentially damaging.

In the perfect world there would be no war and everyone would be friends. Until that day comes, i am perfectly happy for diplomatic OPINIONS (which make up a huge proportion of the docs released) to be kept confidential.
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  #176  
Old 08-12-2010, 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by kolinkins
What an excellent article. Not a word of that can be disagreed with
I disagree. It's emotional claptrap.

See Ipswich's informed answer.
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Old 08-12-2010, 07:06 PM
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It seems a group of hackers have brought down Mastercards website for a while today. It seems Assange does have a lot of support in that community and if the US does persist in its pursuit of him I can see them doing a fair bit of damage and disruption in return.
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Old 08-12-2010, 08:09 PM
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As investigative journalism has recently died its great that Wikileaks has come along. Thank you Wikileaks
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Old 08-12-2010, 09:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Elephant with mouse gyp
The leaks point to the coup against Rudd being set up by the US. This is probably him getting in some payback.
He's got the ability to contradict his increasingly disappointing replacement at the moment since he's part of a minority government. It's nice to finally see someone in the major parties show a glimmer of a backbone. A shame it happens only when they've been forced into a corner but credit to Wikileaks for making it happen.
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Old 08-12-2010, 09:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IpswichEagle
But for every 'good' leak, there are others that have obviously been released in an attempt to gain publicity, embarrass and sensationalise. I fail to see why the entire world has a right to know -

<examples snipped>
If Wikileaks only released a subset of the available data then they could be criticised as running a specific agenda. By making all of it available - even that classed by some as sensational and trivial - ensures that claim can't be levied against them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IpswichEagle
We are an ally of the US and like it or not, it will stay that way
That doesn't mean it has to always remain such an abusive relationship.

A line from 'V for Vendetta' has been getting an airing lately: "People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people."
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