More from the cables: "9/11 of diplomacy" identifies Putin as Batman and Medvedev as Robin

batmanandrobinandsylvio.jpg • The U.S. embassy in Moscow explained the arrangements in Russia like so: Vladimir Putin is Batman and Dmitry Medvedev is Robin. • Italian foreign minister Franco Frattini described the leaks as "the September 11th of world diplomacy." • The Daily Mail says that the leaks include an 'unflattering assessment' of the governing coalition in the U.K. The U.S. administration holds it in low regard, says the BBC. • The BBC also reports that Wikileaks remains down due to an ongoing denial of service attack. • The White House has fresh condemnation of the disclosures. • El Pais writes that the U.S. is keeping a close eye on Turkey's 'Islamist' leader Erdogan and believes he has a hidden agenda. • Der Spiegel reports that the U.S. has an extensive network of spies in the German government that kept it up to speed on Angela Merkel's coalition negotiations. It sees an emergent worldview in the cables. • More from El Pais: Berlusconi has wild parties, Chavez is isolated, and Gadaffi is worried about fine lines and wrinkles.
Coverage of the leaked cables:

"9/11 of diplomacy" IDs Putin as Batman and Medvedev as Robin
Colonel Gadaffi uses Botox to maintain own youth, beauty
"Global diplomatic crisis" sparked. U.N. spied on; Saudis want Iran bombed
Korea unification plan; Illicit Pakistan nukes; U.S. warns Germany "under attack"
Wikileaks under legal assault
US will press criminal charges against Manning


  1. Documenting military abuses is one thing, but this stuff just seems gossipy and reckless. I’m not sure I follow Wikileaks on this one.

    1. Sure, some of it seems petty, but this is just what interesting pieces of information people are picking out of the pile.

      Other things, such as spying on foreign governments, are more serious.

      1. All governments spy on each other all the time, it’s not really news to anyone that this happens, however this tends to get politely ignored, especially when done by allies. Putting it out in the open like this forces governments to respond and can create a big uproar where there didn’t need to be one. I generally like wikileaks but i have to say a lot of this did not need to be published.

  2. These diplomatic cables are going to make much more of a splash because they involve and discuss world leaders and prominent politicians.

  3. Maybe someone is having a moment realizing that if you don’t want to read it on the internet, maybe you shouldn’t put it in an e-mail?

    1. These weren’t emails. These were diplomatic cables, things that are legally supposed to be secure and untouchable by anyone.

      It’s the main method of communication between our foreign embassies and the state department. Do you think that every embassy should call up Clinton directly and talk about everything the foreign government is doing, no pens or recording allowed?

      These aren’t gossipy emails that everyone knows they shouldn’t be sending. It’s the very workings of the state department.

  4. Great pic! (already reFB’ed)

    The wonderfully comedic news from Italy is Batgirl’s “OF COURSE this whole Wikileaks thing is just a plot to discredit our proud country” (The same country where students have been sieging the parliament for two days now to protest the government ineptitude)

  5. It is clear, of course, that the DOS attacks on wikileaks at this time are in no way connected to the release. Just as the criminal charges brought against Assange were in no way connected to earlier releases.

    (Of course, I do not possess ultimate knowledge about the case in Sweden, but the parallel above is striking.)

    1. querent, do you possess ultimate knowledge about these DOS attacks, or is it your default position that when two women make allegations in person to the police their claims must be false whereas claims made anonymously on Twitter are always true?

  6. Why did you Americans release this information? It is extremely harmful. Spying on us is dishonorable.

    1. I’m more insulted that my country didn’t rate a mention in the leaked documents.
      I thought it said “mostly harmless”.

  7. I think wikileaks has done a massive service by demonstrating exactly how the US diplomacy operates. It infiltrates friendly democratic governments with large number of spies. If we look at the Red Cell documents about the framing of the Afghan war for the German people, it’s clearly assumed that the distribution network was already in place to effectively promulgate American military policy. Now we see why they can assume they are capable of putting out the message they want.

    In addition we’re seeing just how duplicitous the US is in its relations. The US exerts influence on the entire world. They deserve to have light shown on exactly how they are doing this.

    As for Assange and the allegations and DDoS attack, it would take a pretty naive person to think they were unrelated to US machinations. They have an entire wikileaks team devoted to attempting to mitigate harmful impact of real information describing the US policy of lies, war, kidnapping, murder and torture.

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