Tuesday, January 11, 2011

 

Counterpunch: Guardian censors release of the diplomatic cables


by Larry Geller

Wikileaks may need to change its partners to get uncensored information out into the world. It appears that the Guardian has been heavily censoring its metered releases of the American diplomatic cables to protect British corporations, for example. Who knows what else they are cutting out, or which cables they are choosing not to release.

An article in today’s Counterpunch begins:

Although we are treated to daily accounts of how the net tightens around Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, the contents of the US embassy cables have been doled out to us in spoonfuls. To add insult to injury, it is now clear that The Guardian edits and distorts the cables in order to protect their readers from unflattering remarks about how their corporations behave overseas. The Guardian has deliberately excised portions of published cables to hide evidence of corruption.

[Counterpunch, The Guardian's Political Censorship of Wikileaks, 1/11/2011]

The article gives illustrations of what is being cut out. As it turns out, what’s being cut is exactly what the British public needs to know most.

Read the complete article for details. I’ll illustrate with just one snip. The part in boldface was removed by the Guardian, according to the article:

Just before dinner, Idenov was overheard “barking into his cell phone” at British Gas (BG) Country Director Mark Rawlings “who is ‘still playing games with Mercator's James Giffin,’ the notorious AmCit fixer indicted for large-scale bribery on oil deals in the 1990s, whose case drags on in the Southern District Court of New York. Idenov tells him: ‘Mark, stop being an idiot! Stop tempting fate! Stop communicating with an indicted criminal!’ ”

Wikileaks dropped the New York Times from its most recent distribution (the diplomatic cables). The Times obtained its copies from the Guardian.  Maybe more pruning of the tree will be necessary next time.

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