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Old 08-21-2010, 05:34 AM   #1
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Default The Wikileaks Afghan War Diary

WikiLeaks’ Reckless “Afghan War Diary”: Nearly 92,000 Classified US Military Documents Leaked on War in Afghanistan
Wikileaks has done it again, publishing thousands of classified documents about the U.S. war in Afghanistan. The website provides a secure platform for whistle-blowers to deliver documents, videos and other electronic media while maintaining anonymity. Last March it released a video shot from a U.S. military helicopter over Baghdad, exposing the Army’s indiscriminate killing of at least 12 people, two of whom worked for the Reuters news agency. WikiLeaks, along with three mainstream media partners—The New York Times, The Guardian of London and Der Spiegel in Germany—released 91,000 classified reports from the United States military in Afghanistan. The reports, mostly written by soldiers on the ground immediately after military actions, represent a true diary of the war from 2004 to 2009,detailing everything from the killing of civilians, including children, to the growing strength of the Taliban insurgency, to Pakistan’s support for the Taliban.

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Old 12-14-2010, 11:48 AM   #2
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Dis is war!...

WikiLeaks actions: An act of cyberwar?
14 Dec.`10 WASHINGTON — The Pentagon has built sophisticated cyberwarfare capabilities in recent years, but it is not using those tools against WikiLeaks as the website publishes hundreds of thousands of classified U.S. reports amid calls that the site should be stopped.
Marine Col. Dave Lapan, a Pentagon spokesman, says he is "not aware" that the Defense Department is behind any attempts to attack the WikiLeaks site, whose founder, Julian Assange, is in a British jail on a Swedish warrant accusing him of rape. The Pentagon is spending $150 million this fiscal year on a new command to lead cyberwar efforts, which are aimed principally at defending military computer networks or attacking those of the enemy. "The United States has powerful offensive capabilities in cyberspace," says Herbert Lin, an analyst at the National Academies,which advises the government on science and technology issues. "The question is how they should be using them."

Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has said WikiLeaks' publishing of stolen documents endangers lives and gives enemies valuable information. Assange's lawyers say a huge file of unreleased secret material will be made public if the United States attempts to prosecute him. Assange's actions warrant a cyberattack, some say. Christian Whiton, a former State Department official under the Bush administration, says WikiLeaks is a foreign organization trying to impede U.S. policy. "Assaulting the company electronically is something worth trying," Whiton says. "It buys you time to go after the organization in other ways." Experts say the government is struggling with developing rules that will govern such warfare, particularly when fighting unconventional enemies. Launching a cyberattack could raise sovereignty issues if, for example, servers were located in a friendly country.

"Every time one question is answered, more questions pop up," says Army Lt. Col. Robert Fanelli, a computer sciences assistant professor at West Point. Lin says key questions are what constitutes an attack and when would it be justified. Assange has been accused by the Justice Department of violating national security laws, but he hasn't been identified as an enemy. Cyberattacks by a nation against an enemy or another nation may be occurring but not acknowledged. The U.S. has never acknowledged attacking another computer network. China has been suspected by the United States of attacking systems, and Iran's nuclear facilities were infected this year by a computer worm. Experts such as software company Symantec say the Iran incident had to have been a massive undertaking involving numerous skilled computer scientists with ample resourcing.

"What hit the Iranian nuclear facilities ... most people assume came from a government," says James Lewis, a specialist at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Some say using cyberwarfare tactics to prevent the spread of information, as in the case of WikiLeaks, would not work. "The archived information may have been duplicated to several hundred sites already," says Martin Libicki, a RAND Corp. cyberwarfare analyst. Even so, critics of Assange say, the United States should try. "WikiLeaks presents a clear and present danger to the national security of the United States," says Rep. Pete King, R-N.Y, who has urged the Obama administration to "use every offensive capability of the U.S. government to prevent further damaging releases."

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