The 401st Blow :: Thoughts On Media

Wikileaks Leaks Itself

Posted in Policy, Rant by Noah Harlan on December 15, 2010

From the always fantastic XKCD:

I also want to briefly say something about my thoughts on Wikileaks. This ‘organization’ is deeply troubling not just because of their irresponsibility, but because of who they have associated themselves with. In particular, Wikileaks employs the repugnant Israel Shamir – the man who publicly said “it’s every Muslim’s and Christian’s duty to deny the holocaust”. He didn’t say that a long time ago either. This was in an interview in 2009 that he still has posted on his own website. I do not trust any group that claims to be for “freedom” and “truth” and employs holocaust deniers.

But it’s worse, Shamir is also a fraudster who apparently was caught faking information in his work for a Russian newspaper to support Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. As if one anti-semitic liar weren’t enough, Wikileaks representative in Sweden is none-other than Mr. Shamir’s son, Johannes Wahlström. Mr. Wahlström is Wikileaks is also a known fraud of a journalist who was caught faking quotes in his work in order to support his thesis that the Jews control the media in Sweden.

For more about Mr. Shamir, his son, and Wikileaks read this article from Reason.

Wikileaks jumped in notoriety with the release of the so-called “Collateral Murder” video. This video showed a US military helicopter killing a number of people, including what was later learned was a journalist. Wikileaks released an edited 17-minute version of the video and what was described (by them) as the “Full Version”. However that full version had a time cut with a full thirty minutes missing from the middle of it. It appears that the missing footage contains sections that contextualize the footage released in a different light but Wikileaks (or whoever leaked to Wikileaks) had an agenda and thus didn’t want the full version to be seen.

When taken together, this paints a deeply problematic picture. Wikileaks is a clearly partisan entity and an unreliable narrator. I suppose there are some questions I would love to ask Mr. Assange if given the opportunity. Most notable among them would be:

“If you had a document that could identify the location of Osama Bin Laden, would you release it?”

I doubt his answer would be yes, but yet he has had no problem with releasing information whose only value is to provide a guide to targets for terrorists.

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