Wikileaks – Does Obama, LKY, General Yeo et al have a right to diplomatic privacy?

December 8, 2010

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Harphoon: Missy Dotty, let me just begin by asking you what do you think about this whole idea that drives Wikileaks? The WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, evangelizes transparency at all cost. He has even been quoted as saying, “We are transparency activists who understand that transparent government tends to produce just government. And that is our sort of modus operandi behind our whole organization.” Do you agree with him?

Missy Dotty: Whether or not I agree with Mr Assange is irrelevant Harphy Boy – I think there are two issues here that we need to keep separate – otherwise, we may find it difficult to separate the trees from the forest.

The first relates to what I term creating the conditions that takes stock of the practical necessity of getting the job done – the other is how do these revelation actually serve the general public by extending the whole idea of transparency and openess?

Let’s start with the first issue: the question you really need to ask yourself here is whether diplomats are able to continue doing their job if they have to conduct their affairs in a glasshouse in the full view of the public gallery? – from a normative and professional standpoint; I don’t see how this can be done – even lawyers have the benefit of the attorney client privilege – they have to keep things private and confidential, you could say the same about doctors and 20 other professions.

Harphoon: What is this attorney client privilege?

Missy Dotty: The idea of confidentiality is rooted in the law of evidence – it’s really a device to ensure the client discloses everything to the lawyer so that he can do his job with full knowledge – I imagine, if a diplomat is to find a solution to a problem; he too would need that sort of candor and frankness, that is why all diplomatic cables and memo’s are kept for 25 years and after that they are declassified and published in this publication called Foreign Relations – the basic framework of the idea as I see it is very similar to the attorney and client privilege. And the idea is at least 2,000 years old, so as a concept, it’s very robust and can be traced all the way back to Roman law—for example, during the trial of Marcus Cicero, while prosecuting the governor of Sicily, the prosecution was not allowed to subpoena the governor’s lawyer as a material witness, because if this was allowed to happen not only will the accused have lost confidence in his own defender – it would also have been in breach of the attorney client privilege – I guess if you really want to make a nonsense of Mr Assanges case where he claims there is compelling reason for confidentiality; you may even wish to ask whether it is right for example to make public medical records and allow physicians to discuss openly your medical conditions – we may even choose to ask whether the identity of minors in sex crimes should even be protected from the prying eyes of the press?

Harphoon: You mentioned earlier: the issue of how do these Wikileaks revelations serve the general public – I don’t understand Missy Dotty – wouldn’t it be right to say that anything where the public gets to know about something adds to the whole idea of openness and transparency?

Missy Dotty: No Harphoon, I cannot agree with that statement – I think what we may need to appreciate here is diplomacy is a vocational discipline very much like law, dentistry, medicine or any other professional job; so there are bound to be certain conventions, practices, protocols and processes that are unique to that fraternity – now please understand this Harphoon, I can well understand how most people may believe that just because Wikileaks will be releasing of over 250,000 U.S. State Department cables, that somehow equates to knowledge and helps further the course of transparency and openness – however, that idea misleads – because these cables offer only us only a very narrow peek into how foreign-policy decisions are made. What you need to appreciate here Harphoon is WikiLeaks is only releasing  transcripts and memos from the State Department. Last time I checked, other bureaucracies, such as the NSA, National Security Agency, the National Security Council, the Defense Department and the most importantly the Oval office does not even feature – so I think, if we are not careful, when many of us read these Wikileaks cables and memos; we may very well be like one of those blind man who thinks an elephant is like a snake, simply because he is feeling only the tail – I think when we talk about the larger geography of what really makes up U.S. foreign policy. The WikiLeaks revelations should be seen as only a source, not a definitive source and definitely not one that assumes an authoritative vantage.

Harphoon: Missy Dotty could you give us all an actual example where you mentioned earlier how these cables and memos can mislead instead of shedding more light into the minds of these diplomats?

Missy Dotty: I personally cannot claim credit for this observation that I am going to share with you now Harphy Boy; I believe the best person to discuss this matter with is the head of the ASDF, Vollariane – I spoke to him recently and he did give me a very good example a contradiction  Vollariane mentioned in some memo’s he noted how the Chinese officials seemed to be growing tired of their North Korean allies and forsaw a reunified Korea run by Seoul and allied with the United States.

The Guardian, following these leaks, hyped these cables as a signal that China was growing weary of North Korea’s bellicose behavior.

But what contradicted these memo’s was Chinese reaction was quite muted following the sinking of a Cheonan in March, neither did China censure North Korea harshly during the recent exchange of artillery fire between North and South Korea – so when you read the memo’s and compare and contrast them with the recent Chinese reactions; they hardly suggest that the leadership in Beijing will be washing their hands of the North Koreas.

I remember, I did ask Vollariane what he thought about this contradiction – and he said, without the context, its hard to judge whether the Chinese were talking about short, medium or long term projections about their relationship with North Korea – he went to say they could have just been speculating – so I think that goes to show you very clearly that these memos do not reflect the diplomatic outlook accurately – that at least is my own opinion. I am not an expert in diplomacy, but I do have some experience in International law to draw a firm conclusion based on what I have shared with you Harphy Boy, that is a very good example of where the information leaked and the actual facts do not corroborate whatsoever .

Harphoon: So what you are saying Missy Dotty is these Wikileaks cables and memo’s don’t come with the context that allows us to gainfully make sense of them?

Missy Dotty:  It might be like what the Greeks say Harphy boy, a bit of knowledge can be a very dangerous thing – readers I imagine would need to exercise care in teasing out the nuances from these cables and memo’s as so much is missing – not only context, as I have mentioned, but also diplomatic parlance – paradoxically, I would imagine one of the ongoing challenges for any reader is also coming to terms with the naked truth – in diplomacy, it appears baby Darkness was right all along – what you see is not always what it seems. By the way, how is Baby Darkness, we all heard, his car caught on fire. Now I know why he wears those strange mittens when he drives.


(The remainder of this interview with Missy Dotty has been cut short and withdrawn from general circulation due to Measured Response)  

“let me understand this correctly Singaporedaddy aka Sergei; you are the Pro-Consul of this region are you not?”

“That is correct your highness.”

“And what you have come to tell us, is this; sometime at three this morning, 70 Liberati deep cruisers lanced our galaxy; parachutist and sabotuers were landed in Prima Maritima to disable power, communications and render our all our defenses inoperative; at the same time; seven divisions of your elite Sardu-Khan seized control of all the main routes with the use of over 19 armored divisions and over 40 motorized units; your allies – the Totenkopft and Germania units then proceeded to disarm all the Carpathians and Freeman’s; you then proceeded to our senate and arrested every single person under the authority of Martial Law and declared the senate null and void – before day break a provisional govt was ratified – whose members were all nominated personally by you…Sergei, Pro-consul of the Brotherhood…and you are standing there right now and telling me, that all this was done to ensure my personal safety?”

“Yes, that is absolutely correct your Highness- what other motivation could there possibly be?”

The Prima Maritima Incident / In Sector 16 – extracted under the heading, “diplomacy,” from the Book of Ages – The Brotherhood Press.

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