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Pentagon Papers Ellsberg Supports Wikileaks 464

Posted by samzenpus
from the your-daily-wikileaks-story dept.
wierd_w writes "Daniel Ellsberg says: 'Every attack now made on WikiLeaks and Julian Assange was made against me and the release of the Pentagon Papers at the time.' Due to the recent debates over the pros and cons between the wikileaks releases and those of the historic 'Pentagon papers,' Daniel Ellsberg, who released the pentagon papers in 1971, has written an editorial on the subject declaring that he rejects the mantra of 'Pentagon Papers good; WikiLeaks material bad,' and that further 'That's just a cover for people who don't want to admit that they oppose any and all exposure of even the most misguided, secretive foreign policy. The truth is that every attack now made on WikiLeaks and Julian Assange was made against me and the release of the Pentagon Papers at the time.'"
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Pentagon Papers Ellsberg Supports Wikileaks

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  • Vietnam war exposer (Score:5, Informative)

    by emj (15659) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @05:46PM (#34493432) Homepage Journal

    Wikipedia article [wikipedia.org], basically Ellsberg copied a couple of meters of reports stating that there were now way the US could win the Vietnam war.

  • by MozeeToby (1163751) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @06:00PM (#34493692)

    Then you had sure as hell better lock up all the good people at MSNBC, CNN, Fox News, Reuters, the AP, etc, etc, because the information certainly hasn't gone through the proper reviews yet and it's still technically classified. Therefore, they are publishing and distributing classified information, lock them up!

    Leaking the information in the first place is certainly illegal, there's little doubt in the argument that the man or woman (most likely Manning at this point) committed a crime. However, it has been shown that freedom of the press trumps the vague term national security, did you even read the link the GP posted? Here's some highlights regarding the Justices' decision:

    He [Justice Hugo Black] was against any interference with freedom of expression and largely found the content and source of the documents to be immaterial.

    Justice William J. Brennan, Jr. wrote separately to explain that the publication of the documents did not qualify as one of the three exceptions to the freedom of expression

    The President of United States possesses great constitutional independence that is virtually unchecked by the Legislative and Judicial branch. "In absence of governmental checks and balances", per Justice Stewart, "the only effective restraint upon executive policy and power in [these two areas] may lie in an enlightened citizenry - in an informed and critical public opinion which alone can here protect the values of democratic government."

    Justice Thurgood Marshall argued that the term "national security" was too broad to legitimize prior restraint

  • by wonkavader (605434) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @06:13PM (#34493868)

    "Daniel Ellsberg, who released the pentagon papers in 1971, has written an editorial on the subject..."

    The editorial was written by Michael Ellsberg, not Daniel Ellsberg, though it quotes Daniel Ellsberg.

  • 1. The NY Times and Wikileaks are two different beasts when it comes to "journalism". If they aren't, then every spy could be issued with a press pass from his intelligence agency's house organ and be immune to prosecution. This may be a matter for the courts to delineate further, but it's clear to reasonable observers.

    The NT Times and Wikileaks are immune from prosecution under US law because they did not steal the information themselves (nor ordered anyone to steal it). That has already been delineated by the US Supreme Court. Whether or not they are journalists does not even enter the picture.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @06:31PM (#34494162)

    Now it seems that everyone blasting Wikileaks must be for selling boys for sex parties (one of the cover ups documented in the leaks).

    Not that I'm doubting you, but I hadn't seen this reported. Citation?

    http://blogs.houstonpress.com/hairballs/2010/12/wikileaks_texas_company_helped.php [houstonpress.com]

  • by ShaunC (203807) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @06:32PM (#34494178)

    09KABUL1651 [wikileaks.ch]

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @06:33PM (#34494188)

    Check out Daniel Ellsberg's site.
    http://www.ellsberg.net/archive/public-accuracy-press-release#more-451

    you'll find he's very much involved with the editoral posted above.

  • by hedwards (940851) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @06:42PM (#34494322)

    But, unlike Vietnam, we had little choice to avoid WWII. It was pretty clear that things were going to come to the US eventually. And allowing Hitler to take Europe would've just provided him with time and resources to come for the rest of the world. Just look at how much he was able to take out with only a portion of Europe under his control.

    Vietnam on the other hand represented no such clear danger and we had to cause the Gulf of Tonkin incident in order to justify the invasion.

  • by miro2 (222748) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @07:16PM (#34494784)

    I haven't seen anything that I've said "Yes, the public needed to know this, it is important and shouldn't have been secret."

    Its probably because you are self-filtering information that contradicts your own opinion. There are in fact many examples of information in these documents that the American public has a right to know. Here is a clear cut example:

    The United States has been knowingly lying to the American public about its participation in military strikes in Yemen. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley in answered "No" to the question "Is the U.S. involved in any military operations in Yemen?" But the documents reveal the answer was a lie. Crowly was not misinformed. He was lying. Dont you believe that US citizens have a right to know when killing is being done in their name?

    A good article with several links, and fascinating audio: http://www.salon.com/news/wikileaks/index.html?story=/opinion/greenwald/2010/12/08/wikileaks/ [salon.com]

     

  • by Wraithlyn (133796) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @07:29PM (#34494938)

    That's because the actual contents of the leaks are not the point. The leaks themselves are the point.

    Wikileaks' goal is essentially to make secretive regimes so paranoid about leaks that they clamp down on themselves, crippling their ability to communicate and operate efficiently.

    In Assange's words:

    The more secretive or unjust an organization is, the more leaks induce fear and paranoia in its leadership and planning coterie. This must result in minimization of efficient internal communications mechanisms (an increase in cognitive “secrecy tax”) and consequent system-wide cognitive decline resulting in decreased ability to hold onto power as the environment demands adaption. Hence in a world where leaking is easy, secretive or unjust systems are nonlinearly hit relative to open, just systems.

    Source [wordpress.com]

  • The publishers of the classified portions of the information are clearly committing felonies.

    Except they're not, as the Supreme Court ruled in the Pentagon Papers case. Publishers are free to publish leaked material. Now, you might argue that there's something special about this case, and I agree that will take a while to play out, but we're not entering murky legal waters where it's just plain wrong to claim anyone is clearly committing a crime.

  • Text of the cable: (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @08:10PM (#34495366)

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/us-embassy-cables-documents/213720 [guardian.co.uk]

    Wednesday, 24 June 2009, 11:37
    C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 KABUL 001651
    SIPDIS
    DEPARTMENT FOR SRAP, SCA/A, INL, EUR/RPM
    STATE PASS TO NSC FOR WOOD
    OSD FOR FLOURNOY
    CENTCOM FOR CG CJTF-82, POLAD, JICENT
    KABUL FOR COS USFOR-A
    EO 12958 DECL: 06/23/2019
    TAGS PREL, PGOV, MARR, MASS, AF
    SUBJECT: 06/23/09 MEETING, ASSISTANT AMB MUSSOMELI AND MOI
    MINISTER ATMAR: KUNDUZ DYNCORP PROBLEM, TRANSPORT FOR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES AND OTHER TOPICS
    REF: KABUL 1480
    Classified By: POLMIL COUNSELOR ROBERT CLARKE FOR REASONS 1.4 (B) AND ( D)

    1. (C) SUMMARY: Assistant Ambassador Mussomeli discussed a range of issues with Minister of Interior (MoI) Hanif Atmar on June 23. On the Kunduz Regional Training Center (RTC) DynCorp event of April 11 (reftel), Atmar reiterated his insistence that the U.S. try to quash any news article on the incident or circulation of a video connected with it. He continued to predict that publicity would "endanger lives." He disclosed that he has arrested two Afghan police and nine other Afghans as part of an MoI investigation into Afghans who facilitated this crime of "purchasing a service from a child." He pressed for CSTC-A to be given full control over the police training program, including contractors. Mussomeli counseled that an overreaction by the Afghan goverment (GIRoA) would only increase chances for the greater publicity the MoI is trying to forestall.

    2. (C) On armored vehicles and air transport for presidential candidates, Atmar pitched strongly to have the GIRoA decide which candidates were under threat and to retain control of allocation of these assets. He agreed with the principle of a level playing field for candidates but argued that "direct support by foreigners" demonstrated a lack of confidence in GIRoA. If GIRoA failed to be fair, international assets and plans in reserve could be used. On another elections-related issue, Atmar claimed that two Helmand would-be provincial candidates (and key Karzai supporters) disqualified under DIAG rules had actually possessed weapons as part of a GIRoA contract to provide security for contractors.

    3. (C) Atmar also was enthusiastic about working out arrangements with the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade (MEB) in RC-South to partner with the Afghan Border Police (ABP) on training and joint operations to extend GIRoA governance south. He is considering giving BG">BG Melham, a highly regarded Afghan officer, responsibility for ABP in Nimruz and Helmand provinces. END SUMMARY.

    KUNDUZ RTC DYNCORP UPDATE

    4. (C) On June 23, Assistant Ambassador Mussomeli met with MOI Minister Hanif Atmar on a number of issues, beginning with the April 11 Kunduz RTC DynCorp investigation. Amb Mussomeli opened that the incident deeply upset us and we took strong steps in response. An investigation is on-going, disciplinary actions were taken against DynCorp leaders in Afghanistan, we are also aware of proposals for new procedures, such as stationing a military officer at RTCs, that have been introduced for consideration. (Note: Placing military officers to oversee contractor operations at RTCs is not legally possible under the currentDynCorp contract.) Beyond remedial actions taken, we still hope the matter will not be blown out of proportion, an outcome which would not be good for either the U.S. or Afghanistan. A widely-anticipated newspaper article on the Kunduz scandal has not appeared but, if there is too much noise that may prompt the journalist to publish.

    5. (C) Atmar said he insisted the journalist be told that publication would endanger lives. His request was that the U.S. quash the article and release of the video. Amb Mussomeli responded that going to the journalist would give her the sense that there is a more terrible story to report. Atmar then disclosed the arrest of two Afghan National Police (ANP) an

  • by zakeria (1031430) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @08:20PM (#34495448) Homepage

    But, unlike Vietnam, we had little choice to avoid WWII. It was pretty clear that things were going to come to the US eventually. And allowing Hitler to take Europe would've just provided him with time and resources to come for the rest of the world. Just look at how much he was able to take out with only a portion of Europe under his control.

    Vietnam on the other hand represented no such clear danger and we had to cause the Gulf of Tonkin incident in order to justify the invasion.

    Wow you almost sound as if your saying the US wanted to help Europe but history tells a very different story? Peal Harbor was the reason the US joined the war not because millions where being murdered by the Nazi's!

  • by Steeltoe (98226) on Wednesday December 08, 2010 @11:45PM (#34496778) Homepage

    Here is the excerpt:
    The leak exposed massive corruption by Daniel Arap Moi, and the Kenyan people sat up and took notice. In the ensuing elections, in which corruption became a major issue, violence swept the country. "1,300 people were eventually killed, and 350,000 were displaced. That was a result of our leak," says Assange. It's a chilling statistic, but then he states: "On the other hand, the Kenyan people had a right to that information and 40,000 children a year die of malaria in Kenya. And many more die of money being pulled out of Kenya, and as a result of the Kenyan shilling being debased."

    So, because of the truth, 1,300 people were killed, not because of corruption and a unstable region?

    Hiding the truth is good, because we fear the truth?

    Coward.

  • by djmurdoch (306849) on Thursday December 09, 2010 @08:29AM (#34499220)

    Those quotes are not from Wikileaks insiders. The first is from the lawyer representing the victims, and the others are from "an acquaintance".

"The chain which can be yanked is not the eternal chain." -- G. Fitch

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