by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
journalism, wikileaks

Why Are US Publications Downplaying The Significance Of Some Of Wikileaks' Leaks?

from the they-know-which-side-their-bread-is-buttered-on dept

We still can't quite figure out why the story of US contractors in Afghanistan pimping little boys to law enforcement officials doesn't seem to get nearly the sort of attention in the press that Wikileaks itself gets, even though Wikileaks is what revealed the actions by Dyncorp. In fact, some are noticing that the US press seems to be downplaying many of the revelations in the diplomatic cables that have been released so far. Karl Bode points us to an interesting report that highlights how a bunch of big name publications have tried to play down the leaks, listing out stories in Time, the NY Times, Newsweek, the Washington Post and elsewhere that all say the leaks have really only shown that US diplomats are effective at their jobs.

But then it lists out a whole bunch of things that have been found in the leaks so far (and, remember, less than 1% of the cables have actually been released), that all seem like pretty big stories, that haven't received much attention at all. Many of them do get one or two stories, and that's it. This includes multiple stories of US officials basically working to obstruct foreign governments from responding to various misdeeds by representatives of the US. There are also numerous examples of US officials disobeying agreements with other countries and believing bad intelligence. But, for whatever reason, that's just not as interesting as the story of the organization that helped reveal that information?

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 Dec 2010 @ 11:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    1) Knowing history, one could easily write fake cables that would sync with reality.

    2) Same sources for the same made up documents. Not an issue here.

    3) Please provide some names and quotes to support, I haven't seen anything except "anonymous sources" and "some dude on the internet" on this one.

    4) If we know it, how could it not be public? If there is enough knowledge, you can obviously make it up and put it on paper.

    5) They have no reason to say anything. Perhaps the government has contacted them and said "Don't say anything, just let it go". That would be in a secret document that none of them have.

    6) They can do that. There is no indication however that all of the documents are faked, only some. There is potential that in response to FOIA requests on these documents, the same faked document may be supplied.

    7) The army has done worse in the past with people they think are risks. It wouldn't be about manning, it would be finding out where the documents are going.

    8) Provide examples. Nothing so far appears to rise to that level.

    Remember: The US government could have fed Manning a major crap sandwich, and then could be providing "confirming" documents that are equally crap. Wikileaks could be putting fabricated documents in with the real ones, using the real ones to buy credibility for their made up stories.

    Finally, let's add this:

    9) Unless Assange treats his own arrest and prosecution for rape in the same manner as he treats everyone else's information, he will also be suspect, and Wikileaks as a result with always have a credibility hole. Why are his documents private but everyone else's are public?

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