Pentagon Opposes Distribution of Wikileaks Files

Pentagon: Do Not Distribute “Stolen” Files Published by Wikileaks

By Mary Elizabeth Dallas

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange speaks to Pentagon

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange speaks at a news conference in London

The Pentagon today told media organizations to not distribute any “stolen” classified war files released by the WikiLeaks Web site.

In July, WikiLeaks obtained and released nearly 77,000 classified military reports from Afghanistan. Now, U.S. officials say the group is in possession of as many as 400,000 documents concerning operations in Iraq. Marine Corps Col. Dave Lapan, a Pentagon spokesman, today told reporters in an off-camera briefing that the military isn’t sure if WikiLeaks has shared the Iraq war logs with any news organizations. But, he said, media should not disseminate the “stolen” information even if it’s already posted online by WikiLeaks, reports the AP. In a Twitter post today, WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange denied reports that a leak was imminent. Assange said the information was coming from “a single tabloid blog” that had distributed a “tremendous amount” of false information about his site.Still, the military says its 120-person task force has been on high alert, notes the AP. The group has been reviewing the documents for weeks to determine what information might be compromised. “The concern is that WikiLeaks as an organization should not be made more credible by having credible news organizations facilitate what they’re doing,” the AP Quotes Lapan as saying.

The U.S. military is conducting an investigation into how Wikileaks obtained the classified documents.

An Army intelligence analyst stationed in Iraq, Spc. Bradley Manning, has been arrested in connection with the release of other materials to WikiLeaks. Manning, 22, a native of Oklahoma, is charged with illegally downloading 150,000 classified diplomatic cables and a secret video of a military operation in Iraq, and passing the video and some of the documents along to an unnamed third party, according to the Army Times. Government officials suspect he is the source of a helicopter cockpit video WikiLeaks posted in April showing U.S. soldiers gunning down a group of unarmed men in Baghdad, the report notes. The group is believed to have included a Reuters news photographer and his driver.

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Posted by on Oct 19 2010. Filed under Politics, Top Stories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

3 Comments for “Pentagon Opposes Distribution of Wikileaks Files”

  1. Admin

    The best course of action for the US government is to take action against the founder of Wikileaks if he has violated the law. If he is found to have violated any laws, let them take action against him under the specific provisions of that law. His actions may be careless, but legally he’s protected under the 1st Amendment. The Pentagon clearly discourages the further dissemination of any more “stolen” classified war files. It will be interesting to see what other documents may surface in the coming weeks.

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