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  • Technorati: graph / links

    The neo-con attacks on WikiLeaks - article


    by Sunny on 3rd August, 2010 at 6:39 pm    

    My latest article is on the Guardian titled: Neocons are hypocrites on WikiLeaks. Oliver Kamm and David Aaronovitch (notice his spelling of my name) aren’t happy. Awwww.

    An excerpt:

    The rhetoric has now reached absurd levels. The US defence secretary said the WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, had “blood on his hands”; people on Fox News have called it “a terrorist organisation”; and one of the Washington Post’s columnists called it a “criminal enterprise”. The former Bush speechwriter also said he wanted it shut down and Assange to “be brought to justice” by any means necessary, and has previously justified waterboarding. It has been reported that one WikiLeaks editor has already been harassed by US border police.

    But there’s one point I want to expand on. I say:

    But not only do claims about Europe’s changing demographics fail to stand up, they betray the sort of moral relativism that they always accuse their opponents of.

    This is key. One common rhetorical trick among neo-cons is that they constantly rail against lefties and liberals for “moral relativism”. Don’t you know that it’s only the neo-cons who care for the plight of Muslim women in the Middle East?

    This absurd rhetorical attack rests on the view that lefties have double-standards when it comes to rights (of women) and free speech etc. It was employed frequently during the Danish cartoons controversy and is repeatedly brought up over Salman Rushdie - see, you lefties didn’t care for our fundamentally enlightened values then!.

    But as I’ve repeatedly pointed out on this blog and show in the article, this concern for “enlightenment values” of free speech and individual liberty is only skin deep. The minute they think western civilisation is being destroyed (a major concern for them) then those values are junked out of the window.


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    1. sunny hundal

      Blog post:: The neo-con attacks on WikiLeaks - article http://bit.ly/cLXnG4


    2. SSP Campsie

      RT @sunny_hundal: Blog post:: The neo-con attacks on WikiLeaks - article http://bit.ly/cLXnG4


    3. David O'Keefe

      RT @sunny_hundal: Blog post:: The neo-con attacks on WikiLeaks - article http://bit.ly/cLXnG4


    4. Derek Wall

      RT @sunny_hundal: Blog post:: The neo-con attacks on WikiLeaks - article http://bit.ly/cLXnG4


    5. Congressman Calls for Execution of Leaker North Capitol Street

      [...] Pickled Politics » The neo-con attacks on WikiLeaks – article [...]


    6. Execute the WikiLeaker, Congressman Says North Capitol Street

      [...] Pickled Politics » The neo-con attacks on WikiLeaks – article [...]




    1. Matthew Taylor (MTPT) — on 3rd August, 2010 at 6:49 pm  

      Aaronovitch is apparently channelling Ringo Starr, which probably figures.

      That said, you’re on record as supporting limits on free speech (hate speech); while the inconsistency may be more restricted than that of many neocons, it’s still about you (or “people who think like you” - scare marks intended) having the right to define the limits of free speech.

    2. Sunny — on 3rd August, 2010 at 7:27 pm  

      supporting limits on free speech (hate speech)

      where? I’m opposed to incitement to violence. Which is different.

    3. Jemmy Hope — on 3rd August, 2010 at 7:32 pm  

      That David Aaronovitch - what a card!

    4. MaidMarian — on 3rd August, 2010 at 8:03 pm  

      ‘One common rhetorical trick among neo-cons is that they constantly rail against lefties and liberals for “moral relativism”. Don’t you know that it’s only the neo-cons who care for the plight of Muslim women in the Middle East?’

      Do you not think that there is the slightest possibility that there might be a bit of moral relativism at play? Wikileaks has after all not told us anything we didn’t already know despite the mock-shock on the talkboards.

      Don’t get me wrong, shame where shame falls, can’t argue with that.

      Meanwhile however those lovely people in the Taliban can go on their merry way unmolested by the threat of Wikileaks’ narcissists and other assorted shameless political opportunists safe in the knowledge that there is nothing ‘formal’ like records of how many they have killed likely to get the chatterati up in arms.

      There is an element here Sunny of people seeking to use any stalking horse or dead Afghan to blame our society, our government an our alliances for every ill.

    5. FlyingRodent — on 3rd August, 2010 at 8:37 pm  

      I think moral relativism is shown to be a bit of pile of bullshit when NATO forces have killed thousands of civilians - possibly tens of thousands, we don’t know because we don’t count - and Wikileaks have, to date, killed none. As in, not one person has died thanks to Wikileaks.

      Thousands v. None. I know which worries me more.

    6. Bill — on 3rd August, 2010 at 8:39 pm  

      Out of interest, how many civilians have the Taliban killed?

    7. FlyingRodent — on 3rd August, 2010 at 8:41 pm  

      Probably tens of thousands, certainly thousands, but we don’t know that either because we don’t count.

    8. Sunny — on 3rd August, 2010 at 8:49 pm  

      Wikileaks has after all not told us anything we didn’t already know despite the mock-shock on the talkboards.

      Really? it showed a lot of voer-up of civilian casulaties. Do they not matter?

    9. Lucy — on 4th August, 2010 at 12:42 am  

      I am amazed that someone has actually gone through all 90,000 documents and decided that we were not told anything we didn’t know. Heather Brooke put it brilliantly in her Newsnight interview Monday night 2-8-2010 when she talked about actual harm vs imaginary harm (final clip in the broadcast, available on iPlayer).
      - It is really shoot the messenger time more than anything else and it is totally risible - Gates and Karzai talking about Julian Assange having ‘blood on his hands’. Also, as Heather Brooke (her again in that Newsnight segment), aptly pointed out, the hypocrisy is deafening. If the US and the UK cared so very much about those who help them in the countries they have invaded, why have they been so reluctant to provide safe haven for translators? To the extent to which they’ve moved at all on that state of inequity, it is thanks to well documented exposure of such embarrassing information in the media. If the US -NATO can’t protect its sources from harm, why is it there ‘liberating’ the country? What is it there for anyway? To stop women having their noses cut off? I don’t think so. It is going on now. They don’t seem to be able to do a whole lot to stop young girls getting genetically mutilated in this country or during summer breaks - a recent Guardian story that unfortunately didn’t get enough coverage - so what are they going to do to help the women of Afghanistan? They’re not going to do zilch…

    10. cjcjc — on 4th August, 2010 at 8:34 am  

      Hasn’t Obama condemned the leak too?

      Is he now a hypocritical “neocon”?!

      PS of course the hyperbolic language is ridiculous.

    11. Kismet Hardy — on 4th August, 2010 at 9:24 am  

      Forgive my sweaty-palmed grasp on serious matters, but isn’t a leak a good thing? Well obviously not if we’re talking about an oil tank, but I know the powers that be always lie to us, and a leak surely exposes that? I don’t get it

    12. Kismet Hardy — on 4th August, 2010 at 9:30 am  

      (PS. That Oliver Kamm. Why did he put a (sic) after Afghanis? I feel particularly stupid today)

    13. cjcjc — on 4th August, 2010 at 9:43 am  

      Because the correct term for an inhabitant of Afghanistan is “Afghan” of which the plural is (obviously) “Afghans”.

      The “Afghani” is the unit of currency!

    14. Kismet Hardy — on 4th August, 2010 at 9:55 am  

      Hm. I’m from bangladesh and we call an afghani an afghani.

    15. cjcjc — on 4th August, 2010 at 10:19 am  

      I stand corrected.
      You should let Kamm know!

    16. ¬AFAR — on 4th August, 2010 at 11:33 am  

      Generally, Afghans call themselves Afghani. In other Central Asian states the graduations become more exquisite. A Tajik from Tajikistan is a Tajiki, but an ethnically non-Tajik from Tajikistan is a Tajikistani.

      Go figure.

    17. BenSix — on 4th August, 2010 at 11:47 am  

      Is he now a hypocritical “neocon”?!

      No, but he’s an arse and/or an eejit.

    18. Matthew Taylor (MTPT) — on 4th August, 2010 at 12:46 pm  

      @Sunny: How exactly is it different? You’re arguing that certain types of speech should not be allowed; the fact that the type criteria you apply is “speech which incites violence” doesn’t change that.

      Where’s the bright line between speech that “incites” violence, and a Neocon arguing that speech which can “prompt” violence - i.e. releasing documents which contain details of Afghan “collaborators” - should be prevented?

      By that logic, I should be permitted to publish full details of the Teller-Ulam design, provided I don’t also say “And why don’t you use this to blow up Washington”.

      Once you accept there should be any restriction on free speech, you have to explain why your restriction is okay, but their restriction isn’t.

    19. Sunny — on 4th August, 2010 at 2:16 pm  

      Where’s the bright line between speech that “incites” violence, and a Neocon arguing that speech which can “prompt” violence

      The bright line stops before me telling people they should find you and stab you.

    20. joe90 — on 4th August, 2010 at 2:48 pm  

      The neo cons need someone to blame after all they have cocked up iraq and now afghanistan big time. Instead of holding their hands up and saying they are wrong, they want to blame a website for showing how badly they failed!

    21. positiva — on 5th August, 2010 at 1:29 am  

      Where’s the bright line between speech that “incites” violence, and a Neocon arguing that speech which can “prompt” violence

      The bright line stops before me telling people they should find you and stab you.

      Oh that’s OK then. I’ll just post a load of Afghan informants’ names, addresses and contact details for their nearest and dearest on the web then.

      Won’t be my fault if the Taliban read what I’ve posted and decide to teach those people’s families a lesson will it?

      Hmmm.

      You don’t have a leg to stand on complaining about David Aaronovitch mocking your name when you go around calling people like Andrew Anthony “neo-con war-mongers” despite them being against the Iraq War. Your defence on that one was that you were “winding them up”. Now the same is happening to you and you don’t like it. Deal with it.

      When you’re out of your depth, get out of the pool.

      Don’t keep flapping your inane doggy-paddle - it makes you look stupid and degrades an otherwise fine website.

    22. Sunny — on 5th August, 2010 at 5:19 am  

      Oh that’s OK then. I’ll just post a load of Afghan informants’ names, addresses and contact details for their nearest and dearest on the web then.

      If you care so much for Afghani (and that’s how Indians call them too) then tell the Coalition to stop using so many goddamn drones yeah?

      I do like how these fucking numpties suddenly start developing an interest in human rights and rights of women when they’ve got someone else to bash.

      Soon as you point out how many Afghanis are being killed by the coalition forces then suddenly they accuse you of being in league with the Taliban.

      When you’re out of your depth, get out of the pool.

      These lame lines don’t make you look clever either.



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