While I can respect, partially, the goal of WikiLeaks, and the power of whistleblowing, at this point, Julian Assange is hurting his cause more than he helps.
“President Barack Obama should resign if it can be shown that he approved spying by US diplomatic figures on UN officials, the founder of WikiLeaks said in an interview published Sunday.
“The whole chain of command who was aware of this order, and approved it, must resign if the US is to be seen to be a credible nation that obeys the rule of law. The order is so serious it may well have been put to the president for approval,” Julian Assange told Spanish daily El Pais.”
WTF does this man think that embassies DO? That there are intelligence personnel at every embassy across the world is just coincidence?
It’s not just naiveté that is fueling this mess, but an ego driven crusade that came from a windfall of rumors and communications that came from a single, and somewhat disgruntled source.
Throwing light into the darkness is a fine and noble profession, but have to confess some consternation about this hue and cry for resignation. If only because if world leaders had to step down every time they ordered espionage be carried out against fellow UN nations, then pretty much, we’d run out of representatives, and world leaders damn fast. What does he think that nations do behind closed doors? Yes, embassy staff talk some smack. LIke just about every other profession does, within their particular bailiwicks.
Next, he’ll spotlight a bone crushing expose that waitresses and cooks often make fun of the VERY PATRONS WHO PAY FOR THEIR WAGES WITH THEIR BUSINESS! Or that ACCOUNTANTS LAUGH AT THEIR CLIENTS BEHIND THEIR BACKS! I can’t wait for the crippling and shocking NURSES OFTEN MOCK PATIENTS WHO ARE WHINY WHEN THEY GET TOGETHER FOR DRINKS AFTER WORK!
While I almost feel for the guy, between Interpol looking for him, for the DDoS attacks–what did he think was going to happen?–and the rest, I have to wonder at his particular ire at this point.
Darfur. The continued Chinese driven genocide that is still occurring now. There are a lot of nasty little secrets out there. There are nasty things that Europeans have turned a blind eye to, in their own back yards for years. Ossetia, who invited the Bolsheviks into Georgia, because they were getting tired of getting shot at by their own supposed countrymen, and who wound up getting shot at by those same countrymen when the Russians pulled out. And again, when the Georgians thought that they had US support to go ahead and shoot up the Ossetians and that the US would keep Russia off their backs. The sad and terrible mess in the former Czech Republics. There has been a raft of terrible things that have gone on, and with a great deal of tongue clucking from Europeans, Australians, and a lot of folks over the years. And strongly worded letters have been drafted to show disapproval. The US and Russia have both stood up a few times to demand an end to these messes, and when tied up with our own military matters, the French, the Germans, the English and others who cluck those tongues, have done little to stop these messes on their own.
Secrets are one thing. They can fester and grow like a cancer. But just as dangerous are the very public and very carefully worded denials for action that cost a lot of lives as well. Very public declarations of sympathy, and support, and without real aid, they result in deaths and despair.
While pointing fingers, and complaining that the US has been involved in some terrible things, the scale of the material from the leaks seem pretty much standard fare for embassies–a little trash talk, some embarrassing information–but nothing earth shattering. Now, we have this release, to say that our President should step down for doing what every civilized nation in the world does at their embassies. This is not simple naiveté but a brand of willful ignorance that forms a shield against reality. And sadly, this willful ignorance and high horse that he’s hopped upon, has drained a great deal of the power and the moral high ground that he could have had, had he revealed real dirt, and blown real whistles.
Instead, we have a grab bag of gossip and mildly embarrassing garbage, and a man who essentially endangered a fairly decent operation for the notoriety of poking at the US. And getting a response.
One has to wonder, why he chose the US though. Why not Israel? Russia? China? Oh, that’s right, because those nations will simply disappear him from his hotel room and without even worrying if he’s got a condom in his pocket or not.*
WikiLeaks has done some fine work in the past, but this mess reveals that it has done so in spite of this man’s judgement, as opposed to because of it.
*The crux of the Interpol red notice is related to a fairly minor incident of not getting an STD test after consensual sex without a condom. He’s just being a douche, and Interpol is breaking his balls on it. But, it does illustrate a problem the man has with pissing away good press.