Military ordered to stay off WikiLeaks
Posted by Xeno on August 6, 2010
The U.S. armed services are issuing internal messages to all personnel barring them from visiting the WikiLeaks website, which recently posted 77,000 classified diplomatic and military messages on the long war in Afghanistan.
Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman confirmed Thursday for The Washington Times that all four services “have put out such messages” after The Times had obtained copies of Navy and Marine Corps messages banning troops from accessing WikiLeaks.
Mr. Whitman later told The Times that the Army and Air Force had not yet issued such statements.
The orders seem to be the most far-reaching effort by the Pentagon in its ongoing effort to stop the release of classified information. The military is telling the troops they cannot even view what is publicly available, even though the WikiLeaks documents are on hundreds of websites.
In addition, the Pentagon is demanding that WikiLeaks return the classified documents it posted on the Internet, as the whistleblower website apparently is preparing another huge document dump.
A July 29 message from the National Security Litigation Division of the Navy’s Judge Advocate General’s Corps tells all sailors that:
“[Department of the Navy] personnel should not access the WikiLeaks website to view or download the publicized classified information. Doing so would introduce potentially classified information on unclassified networks.”
“There has been rumor that the information is no longer classified since it resides in the public domain. This is NOT true,” said the internal message, a copy of which was obtained by The Times. …
WikiLeaks fired back at the Pentagon’s request for Afghanistan war documents with a series of tweets responding to “obnoxious” Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell.
Morrell at Thursday’s briefing said “the only acceptable course” is for WikiLeaks to turn some 15,000 documents still being reviewed by the website back to the U.S. government and delete all the files from its website pertaining to the original nearly 92,000 documents posted July 25.
“If doing the right thing is not good enough for them,” the Pentagon spokesman said, alternatives will be explored “to make them do the right thing.”
Obnoxious Pentagon spokesperson issues formal threat against WikiLeaks: Destroy everything, or else http://cs.pn/aOxf0Y
Then followed that with a fundraising request:
Now is a good time to send WikiLeaks all your money! http://bit.ly/cpxJWC
Reiterating the Pentagon briefing and money call a couple of hours later:
And then said that the site, which posts confidential documents, was weighing Morrell’s statement:
We are examining the Pentagon’s “request” and will issue a statement in due course.
via The Hill