Friday, July 30, 2010

WikiLeaks and Assange: "Blood on their Hands"

The WikiLeaks episode has raise some serious issues of how to prevent organizations and individuals from releasing classified information.  Mr. Assange of WikiLeaks can say that he has protected individuals from being placed in danger but the bottom line is the documents put on his website provide the names of numerous Afghan citizens who have provided support, assistance, or information to coalition forces and who are now in grave danger.
WASHINGTON, July 29, 2010 - Those who leaked classified documents to WikiLeaks and those who decided to publish them may have blood on their hands, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said here today. The WikiLeaks organization made public tens of thousands of classified battlefield reports. Navy Adm. Mike Mullen and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates condemned the leak in the strongest possible manner. Gates said he has asked the FBI to help Pentagon authorities in the investigation. The chairman challenged the motivation of Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, to publish the leaked documents.

"Mr. Assange can say whatever he likes about the greater good he thinks he and his source are doing, but the truth is they might already have on their hands the blood of some young soldier or that of an Afghan family," Mullen said.

People can reasonably disagree about the war and they can challenge commanders for their decisions, "but don't put those who willingly go into harm's way even further in harm's way just to satisfy your need to make a point," the chairman said.
Read the rest of the article at "Gates Calls on FBI to Join Leak Investigation", American Forces Press Service, July 29, 2010.

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