On Sep. 1, 2011 the whistleblower platformWikiLeaks once again got a bad press: Due to a security leakage 250.000 US diplomaticcables being in the possession of WikiLeaks were available in the internet. These cables werenot edited and reveal the names of informants of the US embassies being passed on to higherinstances. The stir in media was huge and the reputation of WikiLeaks, already harmed by asex scandal around Assange, is in danger of being sustainably damaged. The accusations arethat WikiLeaks would neglect both the protection of informants and the journalisticcarefulness. In the news coverage all major media across-the-board, from Tagesschau overSüddeutsche to Spiegel, create the impression that the informants of WikiLeaks, so thewhistleblowers, are in danger now.The Tagesschau on 2011-09-01 spoke of a data leak admitted by WikiLeaks and consulted anARD internet expert in their more detailed report, who criticized that a whistleblowerplatform should be able to protect their informants. In this representation the now affectedinformants were confused with whistleblowers. However the cables don’t tell aboutwhistleblowers having the public education in mind, but informants for the US embassies whomost of the times expect money or do it for their own benefits, like for instance US supportfor their careers. Like FDP-politician Metzner, revealing secrets about the black-yellow(CDU/CSU-FDP) coalition negotiations to the US administration, who certainly didn’t wantto bring corruption to light but wanted to pass some Merkel-internals to his American friends.So according to this it’s not WikiLeaks who should be the recipient for the claims about theprotection of informants, but the US administration. This representation mishap however wasnot corrected.For the media consumer obviously „informants“
of all kind from the paid snitch to theoutworn source for intelligences should be blended and put on the same level with the term of the whistleblower. The report by „Spiegel”about this topic presents Assange as a mazygenius and documents in detail his eating habits including subtle speculations about the colorof his socks. Those who wanted to discern the fine distinction between US-snitches andwhistleblowers needed much patience till the last part of the article. Many Spiegel-Readersmight have, thanks to their ex ante shaped cognition, overlooked it and go on believing thatWikiLeaks endangered THEIR informants. An interview with Assange in the Süddeutschetried to pull the same stunt and the WikiLeaks founder had to point out twice that these now published cables did indeed not expose his whistleblowers, but US collaborators –althoughthe SZ reporter acted stupid till the end and seemed to have missed these clarifications.Over and over again this“data glitch”is used by journalists to denounce an allegedlydefective journalistic care and ethic by WikiLeaks. The process of this „data glitch“ howeversuggests that the guilt could be found at the supposingly reliable “Guardian” journalists:When the cables were passed on to “Spiegel”, Guardian and New York Times, WikiLeaksfirst compressed an encrypted data packet and put it on circulation in the internet. The goalwas to get the data onto numerous computers in order to keep it safe from the reach of thepolice, military and intelligences. The following hunt for Assange by means of an arrestwarrant by Interpol, coming into existence in dubious circumstances, showed that these fearwas all too reasonable. These data got into the hands of three chosen press editors whoreceived then the secret password directly from Assange. The events took place as planned,but disturbances with Guardian and NYT showed up. In 2010 two journalists of the Guardianpublished a book about their experiences with WikiLeaks and with that also released(accidently?) the password. Later the Guardian said they thought that the password would beonly temporary. Every reader of this book was now able to decrypt the circulating data packetand to read up the identities of the US informants.Not one of the quality journalists being so worried about the safety of informants mentionedever a real WikiLeaks informant (Translator’s Note: ALLEGED informant!) who suffersalready since May 2010: Bradley Manning, the US soldier who is detained in US militaryprisons, partly under conditions resembling torture. The USA wants to enforce a confessionand a testimony against Assange from him. But the disclosures attributed to Manning broughtwar crimes and human rights abuses by the USA and their publication bothers Washington tilltoday. They show the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in their full width and cruelty.On the 5th of April 2010 WikiLeaks for the first time showed up in the German main newswith a video which would write history:
„Collateral Murder“. Tagesschau didn’t waste muchtime on details about WikiLeaks but it showed the remarkable recordings which turned the upto then existing impression of the Iraq war upside down. Until then one mainly witnessedprecise clean air strikes through optical periscopes of the US combat helicopters, supposedlysurgical attacks on military objectives, tanks, bridges, dangerous Taliban and terrorists. Onlyoccasionally the leadership apologized for „collateral damages“ of civilians, mostly with thehint that the coward islamists unfortunately used them as human protection shields.It was different in the video of WikiLeaks, here US soldiers shot undeniably deliberatelydefenseless opponents, and one can hardly believe they were judged as enemy combatants.One saw a wounded dragging himself with his last ounce of strength into cover meanwhile thehelicopter lurks in the sky above him. A van, whose driver rushes to help the man, came alsounder fire. There were children inside, as one gets to know, and among the slain are two journalists from Reuters. Cynical comments by the shooters,“Kill the bastards”, finallydestroy the former picture of a clean war and of the noble peace bringers of NATO.WikiLeaks catapults itself with a bang into the public awareness of the western world.This „Anonymous“ who brought these malpractices to light, received the WhistleblowerAward 2011 by the lawyers’ group IALANA. The jurists argue that he imprisoning of ahuman, who brought malpractices to light, can only be a malpractice itself. If BradleyManning as an inconvenient young soldier wasn’t just used as a scapegoat to intimidatewhistleblowers of US secrets, is something no one knows till now.
The representation of WikiLeaks and Assange stays in most mainstream media ridiculouslypersonally (see the „Sock reports“ in Spiegel) and shows little about the politicalbackgrounds; especially in the books being in the german bestseller lists like „Staatsfeind WikiLeaks“ or „Inside WikiLeaks“. The first being an homage of the Spiegel journalists to the higher journalism and therefore to their own paper, the latter a partly embarrassing justification of the WikiLeaks-dropout Domscheit-Berg, “written down“ by a journalist of Zeit. One can not ignore the notion that the serious journalists once again just chum up to the money- and powerelites and also want to use the change to get rid of an annoying competitor from the unlovednet culture.The author of this report, Gerd R. Rueger, also published a book to this topic:
„Julian Assange– Die Zerstörung von WikiLeaks? Anonymous Info-Piraten versus Scientology, Pentagon undFinanzmafia„. The book has 104 pages and can be bought in book stores for