Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Le Monde policy statement on Wikileak publications

For the second time, Le Monde publishes, from Sunday, November 28, on its site, and from Monday in the newspaper, information from U.S. intelligence official documents, made available by the website Wikileaks.
Representatives of the State Department have contacted in recent days with many foreign governments to prevent revelations to wait and warn them against any negative impact. For the U.S. administration, the publication of these documents by Wikileaks is "illegal", it endangers "countless" lives, threatens anti-terrorism efforts and hurts U.S. relations with allies.
Most democratic countries declassify their diplomatic correspondence after a number of years, opening their archives. In the case of Wikileaks documents, declassification is almost immediate and is done against the will of the countries concerned.
It is clear that disclosure of confidential diplomatic telegram a power like the United States, which is at the heart of all major topics of international relations, the display of interviews and conversations held with confidence because they were not be publicly known until thirty or forty years may not be trivial, it is a dimension of action that we obviously Wikileaks measured.
But from the moment that this mass of documents has been transmitted, even illegally, to Wikileaks, and might therefore fall at any moment in the public domain, Le Monde considered it within its mission to acquaint these documents to make it a journalistic analysis, and make available to its readers.
Inform, however, does not act with responsibility. Transparency and discernment are not incompatible - and that's probably what sets us apart from the basic strategy of Wikileaks. The five newspapers partners have worked on the same raw materials and whoever is in first line, the New York Times , told U.S. authorities he intended to use telegrams, offering to them any concerns they might have terms of safety.
Together, the five newspapers have carefully edited the raw text used to remove all names and indices whose disclosure could pose risks to individuals. The world has also offered to U.S. officials to express their views in its columns: it is for this reason that we publish a gallery of the United States ambassador to France in pages Debates.
Finally, it is no coincidence that these new revelations emanating from the United States, the world's most technologically advanced and, in some ways, the most transparent society, rather than China or Russia. By its open nature, a democratic power is exposed to more than a power of intrusion closed or opaque. That the United States what part the Internet revolution, it is here that saw the tradition of "whistleblowers", these "whistle-blower" civil society. And Wikileaks knows better than anyone.
Sylvie Kauffmann - Le Monde