[Le Temps, Switzerland]



Die Zeit, Germany

If Only WikiLeaks Existed Before the Iraq War Began


"In light of such revelations, would the Iraq War have even happened? Probably not. The much-derided 'silly-boy' Assange would have prevented a war that cost hundreds of thousands of lives. He would have been a candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize."


By Ulrich Ladurner


Translated By Ulf Behncke


December 23, 2010


Germany - Die Zeit - Original Article (German)

Julian Assange has been much reviled for his dogma that everything should be transparent. That's childish - and indecent, some say. There is, of course, something to these accusations. But just imagine for a moment if Assange's WikiLeaks made public White House documents prior to the Iraq War. We could have read how George W. Bush's men shamelessly manipulated information, and how they would stop at nothing to pick a fight with the hated Saddam Hussein. In light of such revelations, would the Iraq War have even happened? Probably not. The much-derided "silly-boy" Assange would have prevented a war that cost hundreds of thousands of lives. He would have been a candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize.


This is all speculation, certainly. But it's a strong argument against accusing Assange of being childish. Of course, no one wants children in power! Nor Assange. But - and who isn't aware of it - children have magical powers. They're the ones who, in their naive innocence, exclaim: "The emperor has no clothes!" Everyone knows just how liberating that sentence can be.




Folha, Brazil: Testimony of Sex Charges Against Assange Don't Belong in Public

Guardian, U.K.: Ten Days in Sweden - The Full Allegations Against Assange

Liberation, France: WikiLeaks: A War, But What Kind of War?

Le Monde, France: Le Monde Names Julian Assange Man of the Year

El Mundo, Spain: Julian Assange: The 21st Century 'Mick Jagger' of Data

Novaya Gazeta, Russia: An 'Assange' On Both Your Houses!

El Pais, Spain: Cables: Brazil Warned Chavez 'Not to Play' with U.S. 'Fire'

El Heraldo, Honduras: The Panic of 'America's Buffoon' Hugo Chavez

Jornal De Noticias, Portugal: If West Persecutes Assange, it Will What it Deserves

Correio Da Manha, Portugal: WikiLeaks: A 'Catastrophe' for Cyber-Dependent States

Romania Libera: WikiLeaks Undermines Radical Left; Confirms American Competence

Le Figaro, France: And the Winner of the Bout Over WikiLeaks is America

News, Switzerland: Assange the Latest Fall Guy for Crimes of World's Power Elite

Liberation, France: Who Rules? Hackers, the Press and Our Leaders - in that Order

Tal Cual, Venezuela: If Only Wikileaks Would Expose President Chavez

Berliner Zeitung, Germany: Assault on Assange Betrays U.S. Founding Principles

El Universal, Mexico: WikiLeaks Revelations a Devastating Shock to Mexico

L'Orient Le Jour, Lebanon: WikiLeaks Makes 'Mockery' of 'U.S. Colossus'

Jornal De Negócios, Portugal: More than We Wanted to Know. Or Maybe Not!

DNA, France: The WikiLeaks Disclosures: A Journalist's Ambivalence

Global Times, China: WikiLeaks Poses Greater Risk to West's 'Enemies'

FAZ, Germany: Ahmadinejad's Chief-of-Staff Calls WikiLeaks Cables 'Lies'

Al-Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Saudis Ask: Who Benefitted from WikiLeaks Disclosure?

Guardian, U.K.: Cables Portray Saudi Arabia as a Cash Machine for Terrorists

El País, Spain: Cables Expose Nuance of U.S. Displeasure with Spain Government

El País, Spain: Thanks to WikiLeaks' Disclosure, Classical Diplomacy is Dead

Guardian, U.K.: Saudi Arabia Urges U.S. Attack on Iran

Hurriyet, Turkey: Erdogan Needs 'Anger Management' Over U.S. Cables

Saudi Gazette, Saudi Arabia: WikiLeaks Reveals 'Feeling, Flawed' Human Beings

Frontier Post, Pakistan: WikiLeaks Reveals 'America's Dark Face' to the World

The Nation: WikiLeaks' Release: An Invaluable Exposure of American Hypocrisy

Buenos Aires Herald, Argentina: Without Hypocrisy, Global Ties Would Be Chaos

Kayhan, Iran: WikiLeaks Release a 'U.S. Plot to Sow Discord'

El Universal, Mexico: WikiLeaks and Mexico's Battle Against Drug Trafficking

Toronto Star, Canada: WikiLeaks Dump Reveals Seamy Side of Diplomacy

Guardian, U.K.: WikiLeaks Cables, Day 3: Summary of Today's Key Points

Guardian, U.K.: Leaked Cables Reveal China is 'Ready to Abandon' North Korea

Hurriyet, Turkey: American Cables Prove Turkish Claims on Missile Defense False

The Nation, Pakistan: WikiLeaks: An Invaluable Exposure of American Hypocrisy

Kayhan, Iran: WikiLeaks Revelations a 'U.S. Intelligence Operation': Ahmadinejad

Novosti, Russia: 'Russia Will be Guided by Actions, Not Leaked Secrets'

Guardian, U.K.: Job of Media is Not to Protect Powerful from Embarrassment


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This is precisely the benefit of Assange's anarchical act: it is liberating. Only for a moment, but it is a moment capable of forever changing the lives of those who have consciously experienced it. Even [former East German official] Guenter Schabowski, back in November [of 1989], acted quite literally anarchic, when, out of the blue, he allowed citizens of East Germany to leave the country. The wall fell as a result. The world had changed forever.


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Sure, Assange must be assessed in way one measures an adult life. Confidentiality and taking responsibility is part of that. But that's not the point.



Of real interest are the reactions Assange elicits. How quickly he was condemned out of hand! Admittedly, he's the man who peed in the best kept garden the world has to offer: diplomacy. Someone like him needs a good kick, and ideally, should be kept out. That's completely understandable.


But one lives in hope that every now and then, someone runs berserk, tears down the fence and forces his way into this world of "blow-dried confidentiality" - because this is a fact: Behind that fence, crimes are also being concocted.


Even if by looking behind the fence one learns that people are rather civilized and respectful of one another, it would be pleasantly reassuring. At least then, we would know that the world of diplomats and statesmen are just like ours: boringly normal.



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[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US December 30, 3:49pm]



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