Last month wikileaks published a large tranche of Afghan war documents, that the Pentagon doesn’t like. Actually, they want it all back, if such a thing is possible in the download age.
This is the new ‘enemy’ - the indiscriminate information age. Even during the case, wikileaks gave its followers - 120 thousand and growing - a sharply-focused feed into this continually-evolving situation. Wikipedia is there to helpfully keep the permanent record, written by the crowds, not by chosen editors. We choose our own news these days - I don’t read what just one editor says.
I believe in free information - I host on my ftp server “statements of domestic election observers the night before the announcement of the results” in case that information were lost. I get about 100 downloads a month.
Authoritarian governments everywhere - most recently demonstrated in Iran, fear this uncontrollable melange of information - created by twitter and short urls. It is funny to see government trying to swat the fly.
There is a proposed Media Tribunal in South Africa - with the government’s motive questioned. All governments have to acknowledge that it is impossible now to control the information - perhaps they think that if they have the TV, radio and newspapers covered they have dealt with the majority of the ANC electorate. I will miss the straight-talking Desmond Tutu in the South African media.
Julian Assange isthe founder of wikileaks, reportedly permanently on the move like the Cathar Perfecti.He was bizarrely accused of rape and molestation in Sweden, and equally hastily withdrawn. Even the legal system cannot keep up with this instant feedback loop.
America is the land of the free. It is the homesteaders, the hackers, the start of the open source movement and the tools that built Linux and the software I use every day.
America is also proud of its democratic heritage and sees nothing wrong with exporting informed choice for the electorate onto countries whose government would prefer the old days.
It has been hard to see the hacker culture that made a lot of what is good today in a struggle with its own government. Omnipresent cameras mean that The Man already has powerful tools. But the strength of the American system is they will resolve it, if necessary by counting heads.
More Afghan War Documents
Wikileaks has published in association with the War Diarys above, a huge, unknown, encryptedfile. Possibly more war documents ? A few hundred pages of /dev/random ?All it needs is a password to unlock it. Yes, I already tried “Assange” and all the dog names I could think of.