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Thread: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

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    Default Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    The Irish Independent has begun a week of publications of 1,903 US embassy cables relating to Irish politics.

    http://www.independent.ie/national-n...s-2661629.html

    About half of the cables are from the US embassy in Ireland and the remainder from other State Department locations around the world. The date back as far as the 1980s.

    The Independent obtained the cables free of charge from Wikileaks, but is apparently not publishing most of those marked "SECRET".

    The paper carries several articles today on the cables, but does not carry all of the material online - off to the newsagent, so.

    This article gives a good picture of the cables and the Indo's approach to publication.

    We were concerned with those cables relating to Ireland. At that point just 11 cables – all originating in Dublin – had been published.

    An arrangement was reached without fuss, essentially boiling down to an agreed understanding on the terms and condition of publication, including redacting, where necessary, the material and compliance with a security protocol to protect and handle the sensitive information at our disposal.

    We were able to begin the long, at times infuriating but ultimately fascinating process of trawling through the entire cache of just over 1,900 cables relating to Ireland by the first week of last month.

    The cables are divided into five different categories; SECRET/NOFORN (not for foreigners’ eyes); SECRET; CONFIDENTIAL/NOFORN; CONFIDENTIAL and UNCLASSIFIED.

    The SECRET cables were an obvious starting point for us to begin mining. This category only covered a limited number of themes; the spread of nuclear material and military exports to countries considered unsavoury, such as Iran and Syria.

    The bulk of stories the Irish Independent will publish over the next week came from the ‘confidential’ documents.

    Some of these will scandalize, others will simply confirm long held opinions and prejudices about the nature of Ireland’s relationship with the US and the wider world. But almost all will provide new and telling insights into the behind-the-scenes politicking and horse trading that goes on behind the closed doors of international diplomacy.

    The timing of the release of the Ireland Cables is fitting.

    Coming just a week after the outpouring of pro-US sentiment that accompanied Barack Obama’s on his first visit to this country, the Irish cache gives us an unprecedented insight into the true nature of our relationship with the US.

    It is clear from the cables Ireland enjoys a very ‘special relationship’ with our allies in Washington.

    But this does not appear to be a relationship of equals.

    In the global political arena, our own interests generally mirror that of the US, and this is vividly reflected in the Ireland Cables.

    In these instances, it is arguably extremely beneficial to have the world’s most powerful political and military machine in your corner.

    But on those occasions when our interests diverge, the US State Department is never shy about showing their displeasure.

    Most of the time, particularly when it comes to something of strategic importance to the US, Irish governments appear unwilling to stand up to its much bigger and powerful ally

    Shannon is a good example. The cables reveal several government ministers expressed reservations about claims from human rights groups that the airport was being used to transit controversial rendition missions.

    But, tellingly, they never pushed the issue too hard or took any action that would threaten the economic benefits of the US military’s use of Shannon.

    According to the cables, there was a high level willingness to provide detailed briefings to the Americans on delicate issues both at home and abroad.

    This cosy relationship extended to a cabinet member providing detailed information on sensitive coalition negotiations, ministers promising to advance US interests at EU level and our own ambassadors briefing American officials in sensitive trouble spots around the world.

    However, it is not all one-way traffic and there were occasions when our government was not prepared to toe the Washington line. For example, the embassy in Dublin furiously lobbied senior cabinet ministers in a bid to persuade a major Irish company to buy $1bn worth of products from a US corporation. But their best diplomatic efforts fell on deaf ears and the Irish company instead plumped for an EU supplier.

    It is also important to stress that, while the documents are themselves genuine, it does not always mean that the analysis and gossip reported in the cables are always correct.

    The authors of the diplomatic dispatches have their own agendas. They were eager to impress their masters back in Washington, and also sometimes to promote their own views.

    Sometimes they just wanted to demonstrate they knew what was going on.

    By its very nature, field reporting to Washington is often candid and based on incomplete information. It is not an expression of policy, nor does it always shape final policy decisions.

    These American diplomats have been trained to listen, probe and ****, milk sources, report and write – sometimes under witty and elegant headlines (one cable relating to the deepening fiscal crisis here was titled: ‘The Irish Economy – As Black as the Guinness’).

    Almost all of the time, they view Irish men, women and women simply through the reflected mirror of US strategic interests and policy.
    http://www.independent.ie/national-n...s-2661624.html

    It is striking that our politicians and civil servants seem to be as leaky as broken colanders, when it comes to regular informative chats with the US State Department.


    http://www.independent.ie/national-n...s-2661624.html

    If anyone has access to the full cache of cables and can link it here, it would be most appreciated.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    I hear the failed nun Hanafin was giving briefings to the Americans and in far more truthful terms than the Irish people were getting from her party in public.

    I think not so long ago she was talking of standing again. I think Sr Hanafin from what I hear of these cables has performed the electoral equivalent of urinating in the street.
    Think National. Act Local. Oh- and superstition is just the dark matter of human history.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    I always found that annoying about wikileaks and Assange himself, always a big hullabaloo made about this or that and occasionally details would be released on wikileaks but for the most part, leaks are only released to media outlets of one sort or another, rather than directly on wikileaks itself.

    Why aren't all the cables available directly on wikileaks ? What's the problem or fear of putting them all online ?

    Begs the question as to whether wikileaks or Assange himself was given money for the cables by the Irish Independent and if that is the case, can someone like Assange or a group like wikileaks itself be trusted at all as to the truthfulness contained therein.

    Also, can we trust the Irish Independent to release information on any of the cables without editing the contents themselves or redacting any parts within to protect their own interests. That and if they will just pick and choose what to release as and to what again suits their own intentions.

    Wikileaks should make all the cables easily and freely available online to everyone, so we can read them ourselves without having to pay for a crappy newspaper with it's own agenda.

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    Default Maidir Le: Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    Quote Originally Posted by Nehaxak View Post
    can we trust the Irish Independent
    Nope.

    I take it there is nothing really important or this thread would be a few pages longer.

    Guff about the Greens and MGQ is a handy distraction I suppose.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    The Independent are unlikely to release anything that would get them off the guest list at the US embassy.

    There are various levels of confidentiality in the cables available and the Indy are not going to publish the really damaging stuff re US interests in a month of sundays. Wikileaks themselves may do so.

    The Independent may burn a few Fianna Failers though and for all we know they may be helping Micheal Martin to clear out dead wood.
    Think National. Act Local. Oh- and superstition is just the dark matter of human history.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    Quote Originally Posted by Nehaxak View Post
    I always found that annoying about wikileaks and Assange himself, always a big hullabaloo made about this or that and occasionally details would be released on wikileaks but for the most part, leaks are only released to media outlets of one sort or another, rather than directly on wikileaks itself.

    Why aren't all the cables available directly on wikileaks ? What's the problem or fear of putting them all online ?

    Begs the question as to whether wikileaks or Assange himself was given money for the cables by the Irish Independent and if that is the case, can someone like Assange or a group like wikileaks itself be trusted at all as to the truthfulness contained therein.

    Also, can we trust the Irish Independent to release information on any of the cables without editing the contents themselves or redacting any parts within to protect their own interests. That and if they will just pick and choose what to release as and to what again suits their own intentions.

    Wikileaks should make all the cables easily and freely available online to everyone, so we can read them ourselves without having to pay for a crappy newspaper with it's own agenda.
    I was under the impression that The Guardian and other papers were trusted initially by Wikileaks because of their good reputation.
    The London Indo also has a good reputation, strangely, considering the pile of poo that is it's Irish cousin.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    The Irish Independent is just Tony O'Reilly's creature and has no independent editorial policy beyond what O'Reilly wants. Its a bit of a vanity project for an oligarch really.

    Miles away from the UK version who do challenge the establishment as a newspaper should and is probably the best broadsheet for doing so in the UK. The Guardian and Times are just party political sheets IMHO.
    Think National. Act Local. Oh- and superstition is just the dark matter of human history.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    Quote Originally Posted by Captain Con O'Sullivan View Post
    I hear the failed nun Hanafin was giving briefings to the Americans and in far more truthful terms than the Irish people were getting from her party in public.

    I think not so long ago she was talking of standing again. I think Sr Hanafin from what I hear of these cables has performed the electoral equivalent of urinating in the street.
    As far as she's concerned god is a returned Yank who might buy her family a new hotel to drink into the ground...
    "It is we the workers who built these palaces and cities here in Spain and in America and everywhere. We, the workers, can build others to take their place. And better ones! We are not in the least afraid of ruins. We are going to inherit the earth; there is not the slightest doubt about that. The bourgeoisie might blast and ruin its own world before it leaves the stage of history. We carry a new world here, in our hearts."
    — Buenaventura Durruti

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    Quote Originally Posted by Nehaxak View Post
    I always found that annoying about wikileaks and Assange himself, always a big hullabaloo made about this or that and occasionally details would be released on wikileaks but for the most part, leaks are only released to media outlets of one sort or another, rather than directly on wikileaks itself.

    Why aren't all the cables available directly on wikileaks ? What's the problem or fear of putting them all online ?

    Begs the question as to whether wikileaks or Assange himself was given money for the cables by the Irish Independent and if that is the case, can someone like Assange or a group like wikileaks itself be trusted at all as to the truthfulness contained therein.

    Also, can we trust the Irish Independent to release information on any of the cables without editing the contents themselves or redacting any parts within to protect their own interests. That and if they will just pick and choose what to release as and to what again suits their own intentions.

    Wikileaks should make all the cables easily and freely available online to everyone, so we can read them ourselves without having to pay for a crappy newspaper with it's own agenda.
    The Indo says it did not pay for the cables.

    It might be possible to find some of the cables on the interweb - some of them are probably already linked here, as we picked up a few odd ones here and there.

    I had a lot of worries about Assange's modus operandi. It's not perfect, but the leaks have stimulated a fresh interest in US foreign policy that has overall been a good thing, I think.

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    Default Maidir Le: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    When they released them originally 'the big story' was Fianna Fáil only had a problem with torcher at election time.

    http://www.independent.ie/national-n...n-2444820.html

    Fianna Fail was concerned "US mis-steps at Shannon could easily become campaign grist."
    I nearly forget what a shower they were sometimes.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    Quote Originally Posted by Nehaxak View Post
    I always found that annoying about wikileaks and Assange himself, always a big hullabaloo made about this or that and occasionally details would be released on wikileaks but for the most part, leaks are only released to media outlets of one sort or another, rather than directly on wikileaks itself.

    Why aren't all the cables available directly on wikileaks ? What's the problem or fear of putting them all online ?

    Begs the question as to whether wikileaks or Assange himself was given money for the cables by the Irish Independent and if that is the case, can someone like Assange or a group like wikileaks itself be trusted at all as to the truthfulness contained therein.

    Also, can we trust the Irish Independent to release information on any of the cables without editing the contents themselves or redacting any parts within to protect their own interests. That and if they will just pick and choose what to release as and to what again suits their own intentions.

    Wikileaks should make all the cables easily and freely available online to everyone, so we can read them ourselves without having to pay for a crappy newspaper with it's own agenda.
    I think if you looked into the subject, you will find that a certain J Assange shared your views in their entirety - until he came to realise the counter-productivity of dumping half a million anacroynm dense cables onto Paddy Punter or Aunty Samatha

    He tried that approach. It apparently did not work.

    And that's before we get into the issue of endangering lives by dumping.

    See The Guardian journos' book Wikileaks.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    Sigh. Not sure we should really be all that surprised. I was told years ago, by someone in the IT industry, that the US had been lobbying to get access to emails, mobile phone records, etc, etc, etc. I'm pretty sure they were given whatever access was technologically feasible at the time, despite the vocal reservations of many IT workers, service providers, etc.

    Reality is, we're an industrial outpost of the US in many ways.....and with 100K + jobs at stake, can we afford to be anything else?? Especially since I doubt any European government is doing any differently. Sure the UK blethers on about military independence from the rest of the EU, but needed US know how to keep their nukes on the go, and wouldn't be allowed to hit that red button without permish from Washington.....

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    The Americans asked the government officially to sign up to various intrusive intel networks they have and remarkably the government said 'no'. Not out of altruism you understand but because the EU had said 'no' to them officially as well.

    The EU must have had the hump since they found US bugs in the Parliament offices some years back and investigated and discovered the Americans were eavesdropping on EU telecommunications systems with a system called 'Echelon' which the yanks were denying the existence of.

    Our glorious allies.
    Think National. Act Local. Oh- and superstition is just the dark matter of human history.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    Quote Originally Posted by morticia View Post
    Sigh. Not sure we should really be all that surprised. I was told years ago, by someone in the IT industry, that the US had been lobbying to get access to emails, mobile phone records, etc, etc, etc. I'm pretty sure they were given whatever access was technologically feasible at the time, despite the vocal reservations of many IT workers, service providers, etc.

    Reality is, we're an industrial outpost of the US in many ways.....and with 100K + jobs at stake, can we afford to be anything else?? Especially since I doubt any European government is doing any differently. Sure the UK blethers on about military independence from the rest of the EU, but needed US know how to keep their nukes on the go, and wouldn't be allowed to hit that red button without permish from Washington.....
    I keep saying, 100 thou jobs out of 1.93m isnt all that much. and China, brazil and india arent exactly US outposts and it doesnt stop american companies staying there. even if 100 thou yank companies did move out others wouldnt be long coming. Have some confidence in yourself! And in us! btw americas FDI has about the same real effect on our economy as it does in either of those aforementioned countries. just because their companies number 1/3rd of the public services staff doesnt mean each of them would leave or that it would have near the same effect on your economy as say 200000 odd builders losing their jobs or you taking on all the developers debts and putting all of your creditworthiness into dead banks! even the ever pessimistic VB doesnt believe this myth.
    Last edited by Apjp; 31-05-2011 at 10:57 PM.

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    Default Re: Wikileaks - A network of Irish / US contacts revealed by State Department Cables

    So to sum up so far:
    * Mary Hanafin gave out stink about the Greens to Dan Rooney, US Ambassador in 2008
    * Marie Geoghegan-Quinn got the EU Commiissioner because Jose Barrosso urged Cowen to pick a woman for the job
    * James Kenny, US US Ambassador in 2004, briefed the White house that Martin McAleese was holding secret talks with loyalist groups
    * The DUP were talking directly to SF in 2004 although they have denied that there was any direct contact before March 2007.
    * John De Chastelain, head of the arms verification body was briefing Dan Rooney, US Ambassador in 2010
    * Hilary Clinton asked Consulate officials in Belfast to compile info on the strategies used by the PSNI, the military and the Gardai in April 2009
    * The Secretary General of the Dept of Foreign Affairs briefed US Ambassador Kenny on the IRA declaration of July 2005.
    * US diplomats 'obtained' a confidential letter sent to Brian Cowen in 2004 by the EU's foreign policy chiefs, Javier Solana and Chris Patten re. details of an EU decision to participate in the rebuilding of Iraq. The letter was 'obtained' only 24 hours after it had been sent.
    * Ireland avoided pressure from the US to clarify its 'ambiguous' stance on the EU selling weapons to the Chinese.
    * Kevin Cardiff briefed the US Ambassador on details of how NAMA would work in April 2009

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