THE WEB WATCHDOG
On Tuesday 06/07/2010, the USA military announced that it would press criminal charges against 22-year-old Pfc. Bradley Manning for allegedly transferring classified military information to his personal computer and “delivering national defense information to an unauthorized source”. The charges appear to be connected to the leak of a classified video that Wikileaks released to the public in early 04/2010.
According to a USA military charge sheet, Pfc. Manning improperly obtained secret information, including classified State Department cables and video footage of a July 2007 military operation, while stationed at a base east of Baghdad. Among the thousands of sensitive video footages he leaked to Wikileaks, a website specializing in classified materials obtained by so called “whistleblowers”, was a 17 minutes footage from 07/12/2007, named by the website “COLLATERAL MURDER” in which during military operation in Sadr City, East Baghdad, against the Shiaa Mahdi Army militia, a USA helicopter shot and killed 11 civilians including 2 Reuters reporters. If convicted – Bradley Manning, who allegedly leaked about 20,000 documents, faces up to 52 years in jail. A message posted on the official Wikileaks Twitter account said the organization had raised $150,000 within two days of releasing the video. “New funding model for journalism: try doing it for a change,” the post said.
The same website Wikileaks struck again on Sunday 07/25/2010 when they posted on the website linkages to 92,000 classified documents about the war in Afghanistan (see – Vietnams Shadow). Although the documents do not reveal new unknown details about the war they portray the dark and grim side of the war and raise concern about the ability to keep military classified documents in secret and to secure its information (see – American-Way). Anyhow a man hunt after the leaker is underway.
Just recently web experts, who crossed and examined information posted in Facebook by USA servicemen in Iraq and Afghanistan, came out with substantial useful information about military deployment, moral of the soldiers and the units, their attitude toward the war and possible future operations.
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