September 01, 2011

Wikileaks, Assange, irony alert and hypocrisy alert

I am laughing my head off at Julian Assange and various Wikileaks mouthpieces for him blaming everybody but themselves in general and Assange in particular for the release of all of Wikileaks' accumulated, unredacted cables.

Blaming the Guardian? If a password was supposed to be temporary, it's Wikileaks' fault for mismanaging it. If it wasn't temporary, then why did you pass it out? And, why didn't you have somebody, whether volunteer or paid, assigned to track files and documents?

Blaming former Wikileaker Daniel Domscheitt-Berg, who recently came out with "Exposing WikiLeaks," which I five-starred on Amazon? Absurd. There, he documents exactly this type of sloppiness (and blaming) from Assange before. This shouldn't be surprising.

So, there's the irony.

The hypocrisy is as clear as the noses on our faces, and that's Assange and his stooges and mouthpieces are hypocrites for trying to claim or hint at some sort of "ownership" of the cables after all of Assange's touting of promoting freedom via the Internet.

No, Julian, you can't have it both ways. If you do "own" them, then admit that this is a control issue for you, and you're not quite so totally about the brave new free Internet world after all. If you are about that brave new world, then stop throwing hissy fits about who else has copies of unredacted cables.

Beyond that, Assange and stooges apparently incompetent hypocrites to boot.  That said, aside from guilt-innocence questions in a legal sense, such incompetence can't but reflect badly in any potential rape trial in Sweden. (And, getting TO legal questions of innocence, the sloppiness with control of cables may well have a parallel with "sloppiness" in sexual consent.)

No wonder Domscheit-Berg is not the only former Wikileaker with a critical tell-something book.

I think, like Obamiacs, or worshipers of Steve Jobs, we have Assangiacs, as far as how far some people will go to follow Assange in blaming everybody but him for this screw-up.

Update: Sadly, Glenn Greenwald appears to be singing, at least in part, from the Assange hymnal.  A short response:
1. Glenn, any pettiness/personal vendetta between Assange and Domscheit-Berg seems to have started with Assange;
2. If you don't see Wikileaks' release of the "30 significant releases" as a PR sheet, Gleen, you're either accidentally or willingly naive, and I'm beginning to lean toward the "willingly."
3. Anything that Leigh did "wrong" ultimately is Assange's fault for giving him a non-temporary password, unless it can be proven that Leigh knew it was non-temporary.

As a result, the excellent Spiegel article Glenn links has the bottom line:
For Wikileaks, OpenLeaks, Julian Assange, Daniel Domscheit-Berg and many others, it is nothing short of a catastrophe.
A chain of careless mistakes, coincidences, indiscretions and confusion now means that no potential whistleblower would feel comfortable turning to a leaking platform right now. They appear to be out of control.
Given that much of this was preventable by Julian Assange being ... well, being other than he's shown himself to be, while I salute his effort in starting WikiLeaks, I have no problem assigning majority blame for what's gone wrong to him.

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