Barack Obama | Bradley Manning | Hillary Clinton | News

Diplomacy, State Dept. Exposed in 250,000+ Wikileaks Cable Dump

More than a quarter of a million diplomatic cables containing messages between the State department and embassies around the world have been released by

The NYT: Manning

Some of the cables, made available to The New York Times and several other news organizations, were written as recently as late February, revealing the Obama administration’s exchanges over crises and conflicts. The material was originally obtained by WikiLeaks, an organization devoted to revealing secret documents. WikiLeaks posted 220 cables, some redacted to protect diplomatic sources, in the first installment of the archive on its Web site on Sunday.

The disclosure of the cables is sending shudders through the diplomatic establishment, and could strain relations with some countries, influencing international affairs in ways that are impossible to predict.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and American ambassadors around the world have been contacting foreign officials in recent days to alert them to the expected disclosures. A statement from the White House on Sunday said: “We condemn in the strongest terms the unauthorized disclosure of classified documents and sensitive national security information.”

The White House said the release of what it called “stolen cables” to several publications was a “reckless and dangerous action” and warned that some cables, if released in full, could disrupt American operations abroad and put the work and even lives of confidential sources of American diplomats at risk. The statement noted that reports often include “candid and often incomplete information” whose disclosure could “deeply impact not only U.S. foreign policy interests, but those of our allies and friends around the world.”

The NYT has deeper details on a handful of the cables.

Here's a point-by-point guide from the BBC.

Ben Smith notes that the leaks went simultaneously to four European papers and the NYT:

The Times, Le Monde, and The Guardian led with the fact of the leaks and broke the details into separate stories, with the Times, El Pais, and the Guardian placing particular emphasis (at least at this hour) on the revelation that Secretary Clinton instructed diplomats to spy. Like The Guardian, Der Spiegel saw a "disaster" for American foreign policy, but also was quite excited about the German angle: Which politician said what to the American ambassador.

And El Pais was alone in taking something of a grand unified theory -- and WikiLeaks' own take -- from the release, in its deck: "The cables...reveal espionage, secret maneuvering, and corruption."

According to Slate, the NYT only got the doc dump after the Guardian shared it with them.

Gay private Bradley Manning remains the prime suspect in the Wikileaks data dump, which was allegedly transferred on CDs labeled "Lady Gaga":

"According to a computer chat log published in June by Wired News, soldier Bradley Manning bragged to Adrian Lamo, the hacker who turned him in, that he was going to unleash 'worldwide anarchy in CSV [comma separated value] format.' 'Hillary Clinton and several thousand diplomats around the world are going to have a heart attack when they wake up one morning and find an entire repository of classified foreign policy is available, in searchable format, to the public,' Manning said. 'Everywhere there's a US post, there's a diplomatic scandal that will be revealed.' Manning, 22, has been in solitary confinement for the past seven months."

More on Manning's troubled gay past here.

Check out a report on the release of the cables from Al Jazeera, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. What a terrific security system you got there, folks.

    Posted by: candideinnc | Nov 29, 2010 7:36:56 AM

  2. Bradley Manning.

    What a jackass.

    Stupid sonovabitch is going to set back LGBT rights for the next 5 years...every right wing asshat is going to say, "See?! The fags DON'T belong in the military! They're not to be trusted!"

    There's no whore, like a fame whore.

    Posted by: Michael Strangeways | Nov 29, 2010 7:41:50 AM

  3. All leaked under Obama. This is what you get when you vote for an incompetent idiot.

    Posted by: Max | Nov 29, 2010 7:55:31 AM

  4. The result of USA Don't Ask, Don't Tell army policy ?

    A man who hates his country so much that he released a quarter of million of cables to Wikileaks because he wants his country to suffer as much as he did.

    Don't outcast someone without expecting consequences!

    Posted by: seb | Nov 29, 2010 8:01:55 AM

  5. Max,

    The security was put in place by George Bush's team. The Bush Administration decided to centralize distribution of these documents to make it easier for different agencies to review materials.

    Obama inherited a screwed up security protocol from Bush. Check your facts.

    Posted by: Damien | Nov 29, 2010 8:05:44 AM

  6. Why is Julian Assange even still breathing? There are times that people need to be made an example of...and that includes those in Manning's chain-of-command.

    Posted by: Ted B. (Charging Rhino) | Nov 29, 2010 8:15:57 AM

  7. I like the lead "more on Manning's troubled gay past..."

    Who doesn't have a troubled gay past in this country? (If you're gay, that is) Look at the "It gets better" campaign. The bullying. The suicides. He's been in solitary for 22 months. That's almost 2 years.

    The bullying continues under the guise of national security.

    Posted by: kodiak | Nov 29, 2010 8:30:20 AM

  8. Damien--You may be right, but Obama has had two years to make adjustments. He has to bear the consequences of this appalling failure just as Bush should bear the failure of 9/11.

    Posted by: candideinnc | Nov 29, 2010 8:30:26 AM

  9. @ Michael Strangeways

    Dont be stupid.

    Your right to die in the Army or your right to wear a wedding gown is not important as my right to truth and justice.

    If anything, Bradley is a hero proving that gays have morals and balls bigger than your dad.

    Posted by: suede | Nov 29, 2010 8:43:50 AM

  10. Kudos to the website that released these documents. I wish all classified documents from all world countries were released: full transparency of all governments at all levels. This would level the playing field between world leaders (who are all whores to the corporate infrastructure anyway) and the masses. I am grateful that this occurred and hope it happens more frequently and in larger doses!

    Posted by: Wren | Nov 29, 2010 9:43:58 AM

  11. One way to see this is that bullying, at either a personal or geopolitical scale, can lead to a build of of resentment and desperation that is ultimately destabilizing and dangerous.

    Posted by: Raf | Nov 29, 2010 9:51:18 AM

  12. Governments should be held accountable for what they do. The only reason these leaks are embarrassing for America and the other countries involved is because they are doing things they shouldn't be.

    Posted by: JakeLondon | Nov 29, 2010 9:51:28 AM

  13. The main concern seems to be the tacit support of Israel by Arab regimes in their quest to contain Iran has been revealed. I suppose our passivity in the face of corruption in Italy and Russia also looks bad. However, the rest is hardly surprising.

    Posted by: anon | Nov 29, 2010 9:54:56 AM

  14. Thanks to Suede, Wren, and Jakelondon!!!
    I was beginning to think the comment section had been taken over by neo-cons, and gays who eat their own!!

    Posted by: Bobo | Nov 29, 2010 10:15:25 AM

  15. Bobo, I'm neither a Neo-con or "one who eats their own" when I agree with MS: every right wing asshat is going to say, "See?! The fags DON'T belong in the military! They're not to be trusted!" It's exactly the thing the Right Wing Noise Machine could freak out about 24/7, which could help derail DADT for years.

    "If anything, Bradley is a hero proving that gays have morals and balls bigger than your dad"

    Oh, I can hear the stirring brass music now, and the visual of the flag waving in the breeze! Except....Bradley Manning by the accounts Andy posted didn't do the Wikileaks hack for moral reasons, but was a kinda of sad, lost nerd who leaked the docs because he wanted to be known amongst his hacker buddies and the social group he had around him.

    Posted by: Henry Holland | Nov 29, 2010 10:53:12 AM

  16. I may have missed something, but what is the purpose of Wikileaks? Why are they doing this and what do they hope to accomplish? I'm not being sarcastic or dense, I really want to know.

    Posted by: nick_archer | Nov 29, 2010 11:00:11 AM

  17. @Henry is sad that you were unable to detect the NYT/Pentagon smear campaign for what it was.

    Posted by: Bobo | Nov 29, 2010 11:38:02 AM

  18. one more Henry...Glen Greenwald has written some great pieces on Wikileaks, the NYT, and Bradley should check them out.

    Posted by: Bobo | Nov 29, 2010 11:46:48 AM

  19. Big effing deal. The U.S. government spies! WOW! What a friggin revelation. ALL governments and many other non-government institutions 'spy', if you want to call it that. Much of 'spying' reported is little more than passing on gossip and giving honest, un-PC reports on individuals, politics, etc.,

    There was a story a while back about a U.S. general down in D.C. with a sensitive job who liked picking up teen age male hustlers. A British intelligence service [SIS?] got one particular young man on their payroll to spy and pass on info about this general. EVERYBODY does it, even to friends.


    Posted by: ratbastard | Nov 29, 2010 3:37:08 PM

  20. Brad Manning? Hell hath no fury like a gay boy scorned. That's the TRUE story behind his deeds. He's an angry young man, angry with his personal life.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Nov 29, 2010 3:37:37 PM

  21. This clown needs to be executed for treason. I'm sorry that some of you think that we live in a friendly world where our enemies are itching to give us gift baskets and sit down for tea, but that isn't the reality we live in.

    This kid released MILITARY documents and now DIPLOMATIC cables. So I guess he opposes both hard power AND soft power- what is his suggested alternative? If you don't want war then you have to have strong effective diplomatic tools at your disposal, and Manning's treasonous acts are putting those tools in danger. A world with enemies isn't the result of some American deficiency or problematic western framework, it's a reality of national existence- and it has been this way for every society in every period of history.

    Thank God you people praising Manning as a "hero" aren't in positions of power. I don't know how someone is a hero by putting our soldiers and diplomats in (more) danger--- these soldiers and diplomats are the heroes, not the bitter one who is exchanging their lives for a little attention.

    I sure wish we lived in the world some of you people think we do- where nothing needs to be done confidentially and every conversation can be held on CSPAN, but to be frank, that's the dumbest shit I've ever heard. It sure is easy to be an armchair President.

    Posted by: Enough | Nov 29, 2010 3:48:09 PM

  22. @Enough is right. If you had any idea how sensitive some of this information is (even Wikileaks has pulled back out of fear---"only" a quarter-million documents have been released, when they have nearly half a million, and the papers aren't printing the truly dangerous info), you'd not be so blase. Do you have no idea that this info is going to be extremely embarrassing to paranoid foreign governments? And none is really embarrassing to the US, so we just look like duplicitous assholes?

    Yes, most countries spy. But this isn't the Pentagon papers, which focused on a single war---it's everything the US has done for years. Releasing all of that is incredibly dangerous.

    We've all said things we don't want repeated. Calling it transparency is BS. So many people posting seem to have zero understanding of diplomacy, internationally or even on a blog.

    Posted by: Paul R | Nov 29, 2010 4:14:17 PM

  23. I agree it's a VERY bad thing all around, and no question obviously others are not going to want to negotiate or trust. Also no question individuals are going to be arrested, tortured and executed from info detected from these leaks.

    Assange is just a psychologically fucked up dude more than anything else, it's got little to nothing to do with 'moral outrage' and so-on.

    Manning is a punk, I wasn't trying to excuse what he did...just countering others who give him virtue he doesn't deserve.

    Most whistleblowers and people who leak info like this [aside from DELIBERATE leaks and disinformation, spys, etc.,] do so because they're deeply unhappy individuals and/or have a vendetta from being passed over for promotion, fired, etc., But you always get some tools and gullible true believers also.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Nov 29, 2010 5:18:27 PM

  24. @Enough& one documented instance..just one where any of this leaked information put any troop in jeopardy or anyone was killed because of them! You CAN'T! Because it NEVER happened!!

    Posted by: Bobo | Nov 29, 2010 5:48:31 PM

  25. BOBO,

    ....Dream on,you tool.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Nov 29, 2010 5:58:17 PM

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