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What Should Wikileakers Leak Next?

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Nick Kapur’s halfway satirical list includes “the disappearance of Crystal Pepsi” and the “the embarrassing lack of college football playoffs.” But with a new banking-related leak promised next, plus a proliferation of Wiki-Clones, it’s fair to ask: what sort of information would we most like to have from the digital leakerati?

Those who have followed my posts can probably guess my answer: less salacious gossip, more targeted information on specific cases of wrong-doing, always done in a manner that protects individuals named in documents.

Also perhaps documentation of specific decision-making processes in areas where absent transparency it is impossible for citizens to judge whether their governments are breaching fundamental human rights norms. This would not include things like mass numbers of diplomatic cables, most of which are discreet for very appropriate reasons, but it would include things like the release of the Camp Delta Standard Operating Procedures in 2007. Or to give a more recent example, I am not sure that a leak illuminating the process by which the US government makes targeted killing decisions wouldn’t do more good than harm – especially now that efforts to use the courts have failed.

Readers: what would you like to see from the new generation of leakers, and what would you prefer not to see?

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  • Malaclypse

    I’d like to know why BP could use Corexit after the Coast Guard and EPA both ordered it to stop. I’m assuming there is a whole lot of nastiness surrounding that spill that really should be brought to light.

    • JBL

      With you here — any and all internal documents from BP would be fascinating.

  • Stag Party Palin

    I would like to hear (1) Assange’s private emails containing his opinions of Charli Carpenter, and (2) who he thinks would win in the Big Fight.

  • I’d like to see something on Greece and the Eurozone; when precisely Germany came to understand that Greek debt was unsupportable, what everyone was saying behind close doors regarding the open secret of Greek budgetary deception, etc.

    • Brad Potts

      If Assange is doing this as a matter of following the philosophy he expressed in the recently released papers, this is precisely what he should do.

      • NonyNony

        I’m sure that if someone in the German government or the German banking system had documents about this that they wanted to leak to WikiLeaks, WikiLeaks would post them.

        Part of the equation in leaking is that there needs to be someone so upset about what’s going on with their organization that they drop a dime on them. It’s not like WikiLeaks has some kind of magical powers to command people to give them documents – they only reason they have the US docs they’ve been dribbling out is because Bradley Manning had access and decided for whatever reason he needed to drop a dime on the US government.

        And let’s just say that it wouldn’t surprise me in the least to find out that the Germans had better security protocols in place for government data than the US apparently did pre-Manning. Hell I’ve worked at universities that have better access controls than the Pentagon apparently did, given what’s come out about how Manning got access to so much shit he really had no business even knowing existed, let alone having the ability to copy.

  • The specific quid pro quo for each vote in the FIFA Executive Committee’s awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar.

  • Pretty much all of the records from the White House and Pentagon in the lead up to the Iraq War. Not that our betters in the DC press corps would admit that they were–at best–usefully duped in that year.

    Also, I’d like to see the records from all of the big banking houses for the duration of the housing bubble/financial meltdown.

  • Woodrowfan

    what really DID happen to Judge Crater..

    seriously? Id love to know what the European (incl Russia) governments, as well as Japan, China and Canada really thought of Bush and Cheney….

  • Simple Mind

    I want to know all the unconstitutional and illegal activities and conversations in the Azores in the run-up to the war.

  • JADO

    I want to see all the classified documents from 2000 on. The US Government has systematically separated itself from its people, and that has to end. I want it all – the Energy Commission docs, the Iraq conversations, Plamegate, The SwiftBoat files, Abu Ghraib, Gitmo, Tora Bora, the contracts with KBR, BlackWater, Halliburton,…

    God, that’s a lot. And I’m only about halfway thru the decade.

    I guess I want to see everything that doesn’t involve covert operative identities or foreign national assets – no spies should be killed due to leaks, unless it is by fair trial and death penalty for gross violation of national and international laws and mass murder.

    It’s time for us to know what we’re doing. We’ve been drunk so long, we’re close to rock bottom. Now it’s either start looking clearly at ourselves, or start digging. And the deeper we dig, the closer we get to six feet down.

  • hv

    On the contrary, I want all the inane prattle and gossipy nonsense documents that are being kept secret by wasting my tax dollars. The more massive, the better. This element of the leaks has never perturbed me. Abuse of secrecy can be whistle-blown just like abuse of prisoners. What else would it look like?!

    Many responders want to uncover secrets that are objectionable; I want to uncover that secrecy itself is objectionable. How many leaked documents will that take? No one seems ready to admit to it now, so I guess we need a lot more whistle-blowing.

  • This thread is illuminating in that it shows a suddenly voracious appetite for information. We’ve wanted this much before; but we never knew we could actually have it. Those who argue for restraint and strictly focused leaking are, alas, shouting, “One each, and nothing with chocolate in!” to a crowd of starving people descending on a broken-down confectioner’s truck.

    Now that we’ve seen that the vast bulk of the fare once relegated only to the apparatchiks is threatening only (well, mostly) to themselves, we find our expectations, our desires, fundamentally changed.

    Most of the wish list here is for data to confirm what we already know to be true. One might say that’s inevitable (how can we wish for something we don’t know exists?), but I don’t think that’s correct. I think it says a lot about what the secret state actually consisted of: Proof, testimony, details that illuminate the shape and dynamics of the amorphous hodge podge we call state and power.

    We may understand the dynamics already, but that doesn’t mean we don’t desire to know exactly how they operate.

    If WikiLeaks achieves nothing else, I think it will effect a cultural change among policy analysts. An entire generation is going to come of age by trading in the gift economy that is fundamental to digital communications. And I would be amazed if those who have profited in the past from secrecy as a way of maintaining information scarcity will be able to keep them at bay.

    If you write something down -and eventually, you must- it will be stored digitally. It only needs to be copied once to be copied innumerable times.

    Once again, humanity as a species is struggling to come to terms with its own inventions. We are led by our technology; our cultures must adapt to it.

    • hv

      Laws are like sausages; the minute you grasp the smallest sense of how things really work, you become very interested in exactly how they are being made.

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