The State Department Papers Show the Underside of American Diplomacy
The list seems unending. American diplomacy has spied on the secretary general and other high-ranking officials of the U.N. and gone as far as to scrutinize their credit card numbers. The Arabian Gulf governments are pressuring Washington to launch a war against Tehran before Iran becomes a nuclear power and brings them down. Turkey’s moderate Islamic government confronts continuous resistance from secular militants and fears a hidden Islamic agenda. But there’s more. Beijing orders a cyber attack against Google at the end of 2009, and at the same time it’s planning to let its Stalinist ally, North Korea, fall, in exchange for homogenizing the future unified Korean peninsula. Pakistan underhandedly helps terrorist groups while it augments its nuclear arsenal. In order to do business in Morocco, one has to contend with the “bite” of the royal house, which maintains its army dreadfully. Saudi Arabia is the principal financial source of Islamic terrorism.
The list affects all the continents. The emotional stability of Argentinean President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner worries citizens and foreigners; when her husband was alive, he transferred a good part of his official matters to her. Cuban-Venezuelan relations are so strained that the island’s spies move freely through the oil country. The Cubans also have higher influence in Bolivia: They treated its president for a serious nasal tumor. They also affect Europe. The German demochristian-liberal coalition limps from the seriously reserved and fearful character of its chancellor. The French president, the most pro-American since De Gaulle, has proven a despotic personality.
And on to Spain. Zapatero’s government complied in minimizing the post-war differences with Washington; in diffusing CIA air flights, he was two-faced in the pursuit of journalist José Couso’s murderers. Also, the district attorney’s office played a controversial role in the evolution of torture procedures in Guantánamo Bay. Against what was always promised, ex-President Aznar declared himself available to return to politics in case Spain needed it. And in addition to what’s been said up to now, more can still come out of the State Department papers, which is what this publication, in addition to other international mastheads, is revealing as a result of the massive leaks carried out by Wikileaks. Significantly, its founder is being pursued by Interpol, and his website is being boycotted and shut down.
The publication of the above statements has shaken international opinion and startled governments, which in many cases put forth false arguments to minimize or discredit the information explosion. [Interest in] the security of people has guaranteed the elimination of names and dates that could put them in danger, as the reader has been able to see. The media that have published the revelations have acted within the limits outlined by the United States Supreme Court in the Pentagon Papers case, choosing liberty of expression and the right of the citizens to have access to information. With respect to the relevance of that information, the pages of this publication speak for themselves.
There is no historical predecessor to such a far-reaching journalistic incident — not by the number of countries concerned, nor by the relevance of the information, which affects practically all current world conflicts. These revelations shed light on a political sub-world, about which already exist well-supported suspicions but little proof and few certainties. Therefore citizens are freer today than yesterday, and the big powers know that they are being watched more closely. And it’s a momentous advancement, although it is born from the modesty of journalism.