WikiLeaks Hypocrisy Watch — The Guardian Edition
The Guardian published an editorial by a Republican political operative today blaming WikiLeaks for releasing a State Department cable concerning a meeting between Tsvangirai and Susan Rice in which Tsvangirai discussed the possibility of peacefully removing Mugabe from power:
Now, in the wake of the WikiLeaks’ release, one of the men targeted by US and EU travel and asset freezes, Mugabe’s appointed attorney general, has launched a probe to investigate Tsvangirai’s involvement in sustained western sanctions. If found guilty, Tsvangirai will face the death penalty.
And so, where Mugabe’s strong-arming, torture and assassination attempts have failed to eliminate the leading figure of Zimbabwe’s democratic opposition, WikiLeaks may yet succeed. Twenty years of sacrifice and suffering by Tsvangirai all for naught, as WikiLeaks risks “collateral murder” in the name of transparency.
Before more political carnage is wrought and more blood spilled – in Africa and elsewhere, with special concern for those US-sympathising Afghans fingered in its last war document dump – WikiLeaks ought to leave international relations to those who understand it – at least to those who understand the value of a life.
Tsvangirai has not yet been charged, much less convicted, sentenced to death, and executed. And, of course, Mugabe has been trying to kill or otherwise eliminate Tsvangirai for years — including unsuccessfully prosecuting Tsvangirai for high treason for allegedly hiring assassins to kill Mugabe (a tad worse than the political solutions he advocated to Rice).
What is most interesting, though, is the editorialist’s claim that the release indicates WikiLeaks does not “understand the value of a life.” WikiLeaks released the cable on 8 December 2010 at 9:09 pm. The Guardian released the same cable on 8 December 2010 at 9:30 pm — 21 minutes later — along with, also at 9:30 pm, a lengthy accompanying article discussing its contents. The release was thus obviously orchestrated by WikiLeaks and The Guardian, the latter ensuring that the cable would find a global audience.
But, of course, only WikiLeaks does not “understand the value of a life.”
UPDATE: WikiLeaks has tweeted that, in fact, The Guardian itself chose the cable for publication.