Sunday, July 25, 2010

Wikileaks Strikes Again: Afghanistan Docs!!!

This was just coming in on the MSNBC site, only minutes ago:

90,000 Afghan war documents being leaked

Previously unreported civilian deaths among the disclosures by Wikileaks

25 July 2010 Some 90,000 leaked U.S. military records amount to an blow-by-blow account of six years of the Afghanistan war, including unreported incidents of Afghan civilian killings as well as covert operations against Taliban figures, two newspapers and a magazine with access to the documents reported Sunday.

The online whistle-blower organization Wikileaks was planning to post the documents on its website Sunday. The New York Times, London's Guardian newspaper and the German weekly Der Spiegel were given early access to the documents.

The Times said the documents — including classified cables and assessments between military officers and diplomats — describe U.S. fears that ally Pakistan's intelligence service was actually aiding the Afghan insurgency.

According to the Times, the documents suggest Pakistan "allows representatives of its spy service to meet directly with the Taliban in secret strategy sessions to organize networks of militant groups that fight against American soldiers in Afghanistan, and even hatch plots to assassinate Afghan leaders."

The Guardian, however, interpreted the documents differently, saying they "fail to provide a convincing smoking gun" for complicity between the Pakistan intelligence services and the Taliban.

The Guardian report focuses instead on documents that it said reveal "how a secret 'black' unit of special forces hunts down Taliban leaders for kill or capture without trial" and "how the U.S. covered up evidence that the Taliban has acquired deadly surface-to-air missiles."

Der Spiegel, meanwhile, reported that the records show Afghan security officers as helpless victims of Taliban attacks. Continued

These documents, according to this report: "The documents posted by Wikileaks reportedly cover a period of time from January 2004 to December 2009,"

Right at the moment I'm following links to see what this is about and what these documents cover, so far we have this:

Afghanistan war logs: Massive leak of secret files exposes truth of occupation

Hundreds of civilians killed by coalition troops
Covert unit hunts leaders for 'kill or capture'
Steep rise in Taliban bomb attacks on Nato Continued

From the Guardian
Afghanistan: The War Logs

About the war logs

How to read the logs

Video Video (2min 41sec), David Leigh explains what is in the logs and how the Guardian is using them

This series of reports on the war in Afghanistan is based on the US military's internal logs of the conflict between January 2004 and December 2009. Read more about the logs and how the Guardian investigated them. Read more

Wikileaks Julian Assange

Julian Assange on the Afghanistan war logs: 'They show the true nature of this war'

Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, explains why he decided to publish thousands of secret US military files on the war in Afghanistan

New York Times: An archive of classified military documents offers an unvarnished view of the war in Afghanistan

Der Spiegel: The Afghanistan Protocol; Explosive Leaks Provide Image of War from Those Fighting It

John Kerry, Wikileaks Bellweather?

The reactions to the massive Wikileaks document dump will be fascinating to view during the next few days. So far, the administration's response is to condemn the leaks while also noting that most of the revealed documents stem from the Bush era. Specifically, the White House advised reporters:


Could the Wikileak document dump be a tipping point for the Massachusetts senator? Consider his statement released hours after the documents went public:

“However illegally these documents came to light, they raise serious questions about the reality of America’s policy toward Pakistan and Afghanistan. Those policies are at a critical stage and these documents may very well underscore the stakes and make the calibrations needed to get the policy right more urgent.”

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