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GLOBAL-L  October 2010

GLOBAL-L October 2010

Subject:

Re: final statement draft

From:

"G. Reyes" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Sat, 30 Oct 2010 21:22:29 +0200

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (395 lines)

Please add my name to the statement.
Gloria Reyes
International Journalism
Cologne, Germany


Am 30.10.2010 8:06 Uhr schrieb "HUNTER Mark" unter <[log in to unmask]>:

> Folks, Nicky Hager has put together a final draft from all these comments, and
> I think we all owe him large thanks.
> 
> Gavin McFadyen, who I see is back on this list, is going to take charge of
> publicising in US and UK.  I will send a draft to AFP in France.
> 
> I will sign as Mark Lee Hunter, author, "Story-Based Inquiry: A Manual for
> Investigative Reporters" (UNESCO 2009).  If anyone has ideas about how to
> simplify signing, please advise!
> 
> Draft is as follows:
> 
> Julian Assange, founder of the whistle-blowing organisation Wikileaks, is
> being angrily criticised and threatened for his part in huge leaks of military
> documents on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq (the 'War Diaries'). He is being
> accused of irresponsibly releasing confidential military information, of
> endangering lives of people named in the leaked military reports and even of
> espionage. Some media organisations have joined in this criticism.
> 
> We, journalists and journalist organisations from many countries, express our
> support for Mr Assange and Wikileaks. We believe that Mr Assange has made an
> outstanding contribution to transparency and accountability on the Afghanistan
> and Iraq wars, subjects where transparency and accountability has been
> severely restricted by government secrecy and media control. He is being
> attacked for releasing information that should never have been withheld from
> the public.
> 
> We believe Wikileaks had the right to post confidential military documents
> because it was in the interest of the public to know what was happening. The
> documents show evidence that the US Government has misled the public about
> activities in Iraq and Afghanistan and that war crimes may have been
> committed.
> 
> Has Wikileaks endangered lives? There was legitimate criticism of Wikileaks
> for not vetting the Afghanistan documents fully enough, with some names such
> as informers being released. Fortunately there is no evidence that anyone has
> been injured or killed as a result. We note that Wikileaks learned from that
> mistake and has been much more careful with the Iraq documents. Overall,
> Wikileaks' factual reporting of numerous undisputed abuses and crimes is of
> far greater significance than the widely criticised mistakes over inadequate
> redacting.
> 
> Mr Assange is being personally pressured because of his involvement in the
> military leaks, including threats of espionage charges. Mr. Assange is no more
> guilty of espionage than any journalist or any whistleblower.  This is a
> terrible precedent and one that is contrary to open government.
> If it is espionage to publish documents provided by whistle blowers, then
> every journalist will eventually be guilty of that crime. Mr Assange deserves
> our support and encouragement in the face of the attacks.
> 
> Since it was launched in 2006, Wikileaks has been an extraordinary resource
> for journalists around the world, furthering transparency at a time when
> governments are reducing it. Although it is not part of the media, and does
> not purport to be, its mission of informing the public and reducing
> unjustified secrecy complements and assists our work. As grateful
> beneficiaries of Wikileaks and Mr Assange's work, we stand in support of them
> at this time.
> 
> Best to all, 
> 
> Mark Lee Hunter
> Adjunct Professor and Senior Research Fellow, INSEAD
> Docteur en Sciences de l'Information de l'Université de Paris 2
> Portable: (+33) [0]6 27 81 00 87
> 
> 
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Drew Sullivan [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Fri 29/10/2010 22:01
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [GLOBAL-L] statement on Wikileaks
>  
> Thanks Gavin.  That was quite informative and helpful.
>  
> 
> ******************************************************
> Drew Sullivan 
> Advising Editor 
> Center for Investigative Reporting (www.cin.ba <http://www.cin.ba/> )
> Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (www.reportingproject.net
> <http://www.reportingproject.net/> )
> Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
> [log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>
> +387 33 560 042 (office)
> +387 61 139 403 (mobile)
> 
>  
> 
> ________________________________
> 
> From: Gavin MacFadyen [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 9:15 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [GLOBAL-L] statement on Wikileaks
> 
> 
> Dear Drew, 
> Here are a few respectful remarks.
> As a point of fact, not conjecture, the redaction of the much larger (400,000)
> Iraq documents was achieved using a much more invasive method than used
> before.  The method is something like this. Instead of hunting for particular
> names, words, numbers which was so time consuming during the first redaction
> process, they reversed the process.  They redacted virtually everything in
> each log.  Then they carefully replaced only those words which did not relate
> to anyone in particular.  This precluded the names of even the reporting
> soldiers, or the identifying locations.  When the statistics were being culled
> from these logs, these details were used to enable corroboration with existing
> media sources, Iraqi government releases etc.  The Bureau of Investigative
> Journalism who recieved logs from WikiLeaks, and like the NYTimes, The
> Guardian, LeMonde, Iraq Body Count and Der Spiegel is entirely independent of
> the source and no one connected in any way to this second stage redaction
> process has voiced any complaints of which I am aware.  All of this work had
> nothing to do with WikiLeaks and was vetted again by many lawyers prior to the
> release of the few redacted documents that accompanied the analysis.
> 
> On the deaths as a result of the Afghan logs, there is indeed an interested
> party, the force that recruited or used the names that escaped the original
> redaction would have most to gain by publicising any deaths.  And that's the
> Coalition forces.  And so far despite claims that the Taliban were scouring
> the logs for these sources, months have passed and there is thankfully
> nothing.  
> 
> And not easily tracked.  Its those who have fixed addresses in particular
> villages who were in danger of being identified, not non-geographically fixed
> names.  It's precisely because they had a known address that put them in
> danger.  Also reading the logs is not easy, even for English speakers, its
> much military jargon, code words - so much so that the Guardian published a
> glossary for their own teams just to make a dent in the translations.
> 
> On 29 Oct 2010, at 18:03, Drew Sullivan wrote:
> 
> 
> I'd suggest that sentence be added in.  But I don't like the opinion that the
> story outweighs our professional responsibility.  I think you can do both and
> that's my argument here. And not everyone agrees they did a far better job.
> And to say there is no evidence that no one has been killed is an assumption.
> There is no evidence that nobody has not been killed.  It's not like these
> people are easily tracked. Or that killers aren't looking for them now and
> they won't be killed at some future date.  We don't know.
> 
> 
> ******************************************************
> Drew Sullivan
> Advising Editor
> Center for Investigative Reporting (www.cin.ba)
> Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (www.reportingproject.net)
> Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
> [log in to unmask]
> +387 33 560 042 (office)
> +387 61 139 403 (mobile)
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Lucy Komisar [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 3:23 PM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [GLOBAL-L] statement on Wikileaks
> 
> I prefer this graf in Mark's
> 
> Has Wikileaks endangered lives? There was legitimate criticism of Wikileaks
> for not vetting the Afghanistan documents fully enough, with some names such
> as informers being released. Fortunately there is no evidence that anyone has
> been injured or killed as a result. We note that Wikileaks learned from that
> mistake and has been much more careful with the Iraq documents.
> Overall, Wikileaks' factual reporting of numerous undisputed abuses and crimes
> is of far greater significance than the widely criticised mistakes over
> inadequate redacting.
> 
> To the 3rd graf of Drew's
> 
> Wikileaks may not have done enough to mitigate harm and we hope that the
> organization takes this responsibility seriously in the future. We understand
> the difficult decisions inherent in weighing public good versus mitigating
> harm.
> 
> Or at least add in the line that Wikileaks has learned from its mistake and
> been more careful......
> 
> Otherwise, it's very good and thank to the drafters.
> 
> Lucy
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Drew Sullivan [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 5:31 AM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [GLOBAL-L] Gavin McFadyen on Wikileaks
> 
> I am not comfortable.  Might I suggest a replacement for graphs 3/4/5
> 
> We believe Wikileaks had the right to post confidential military documents
> because it was in the interest of the public to know what was happening. The
> documents show evidence that the US Government has misled the public about
> activities in Iraq and Afghanistan and that war crimes may have been
> committed.
> 
> Wikileaks may not have done enough to mitigate harm and we hope that the
> organization takes this responsibility seriously in the future. We understand
> the difficult decisions inherent in weighing public good versus mitigating
> harm. 
> 
> But the fact remains that Mr. Assange is no more guilty of espionage than any
> journalist or any whistleblower.  This is a terrible precedent and one that is
> contrary to open government.
> 
> 
> ******************************************************
> Drew Sullivan
> Advising Editor
> Center for Investigative Reporting (www.cin.ba) Organized Crime and Corruption
> Reporting Project (www.reportingproject.net) Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
> [log in to unmask]
> +387 33 560 042 (office)
> +387 61 139 403 (mobile)
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: HUNTER Mark [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 7:35 AM
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [GLOBAL-L] Gavin McFadyen on Wikileaks
> 
> Hello, Nicky Hager of this list wrote the following.  I cut a few words from
> the first version.  You all can suggest further cuts/changes.  Comments
> welcome.
> 
> "Julian Assange, founder of the whistle-blowing organisation Wikileaks, is
> being angrily criticised and threatened for his part in huge leaks of military
> documents on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq (the 'War Diaries').
> He is being accused of irresponsibly releasing confidential military
> information, of endangering lives of people named in the leaked military
> reports and even of espionage. Some media organisations have joined in this
> criticism.
> 
> We, journalists and journalist organisations from many countries, express our
> support for Mr Assange and Wikileaks. We believe that Mr Assange has made an
> outstanding contribution to transparency and accountability on the Afghanistan
> and Iraq wars, subjects where transparency and accountability has been
> severely restricted by government secrecy and media control. He is being
> attacked for releasing information that should never have been withheld from
> the public.
> 
> Was Wikileaks doing something wrong by releasing confidential military
> documents? Not at all. There is a fundamental difference between legitimately
> private information, such as between a patient and doctor, and secret
> information about the mass killing of civilians and handing over prisoners to
> be tortured.
> 
> Has Wikileaks endangered lives? There was legitimate criticism of Wikileaks
> for not vetting the Afghanistan documents fully enough, with some names such
> as informers being released. Fortunately there is no evidence that anyone has
> been injured or killed as a result. We note that Wikileaks learned from that
> mistake and has been much more careful with the Iraq documents.
> Overall, Wikileaks' factual reporting of numerous undisputed abuses and crimes
> is of far greater significance than the widely criticised mistakes over
> inadequate redacting.
> 
> Is Mr Assange guilty of crimes? No, it is some of his loudest accusers who
> appear to be guilty of crimes, which may explain their campaign of denigration
> against him. E ABOVE
> 
> I SUGGEST WE CUT TH
> 
> This campaign now includes suggestions of espionage charges against Mr
> Assange. If it is espionage to publish documents provided by whistle blowers,
> then every journalist will eventually be guilty of that crime. Mr Assange
> deserves our support and encouragement in the face of the attacks.
> 
> Since it was launched in 2006, Wikileaks has been an extraordinary resource
> for journalists around the world, furthering transparency at a time when
> governments are reducing it. Although it is not part of the media, and does
> not purport to be, its mission of informing the public and reducing
> unjustified secrecy complements and assists our work. As grateful
> beneficiaries of Wikileaks and Mr Assange's work, we stand in support of them
> at this time."
> 
> Best to all
> 
> Mark Lee Hunter
> Adjunct Professor and Senior Research Fellow, INSEAD Docteur en Sciences de
> l'Information de l'Université de Paris 2
> Portable: (+33) [0]6 27 81 00 87
> 
> =======================================================================
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> 
> =======================================================================
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> =======================================================================
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> =======================================================================
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 
>  Gavin MacFadyen,
>   Director,  
> 
>   
> 
> Centre for Investigative Journalism,
> Department of Journalism, City University, Northampton Square, London EC1V
> 0HB   
> [log in to unmask] <mailto:[log in to unmask]>       +44 (0)7740 304 570    +44 (0)207
> 040-8224
> 
> 
> 
> 
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