16 May 2011

Chaff Seeded With Lies and Propaganda

Ever had the feeling that you've been cheated?

The wikileaks saga continues with people behaving as though the wikileaks diplomatic cable release is the fount of truth. But ever present epistemeology continues to whisper, 'but how do you know?'

As the wikipedia article explains,
"According to The Guardian, all the diplomatic cables were marked "Sipdis", denoting "secret internet protocol distribution", which means they had been distributed via the closed U.S. SIPRNet, the U.S. Department of Defense’s classified version of the civilian internet.20 Although more than three million U.S. government personnel and soldiers have access to this network,21 "top secret" documents are not included in the system."
A data dump of emails with a circulation of three million people is hardly going to be secret: some may classify it as such, but that doesn't make it so.

In other words: it's chaff.

The next question is one of verification - how do we know that this, or other wikileaks leaks, aren't emanating from some US propagandist? How do we know that they aren't riddled with lies? As has been pointed out by others; if one compares wikileaks to Watergate, not the story but the mechanics of the story, there was one thing that makes all the difference: Watergate had a verifiable source. Wikileaks has no historical verifiability; it simply has visual verifiability - it looks real, so it must be real. By visual verifiability and looking real, I mean the theatre around wikileaks; for instance, the creepy Assange who is perpetually on the lam, the rape allegations and extradition, the torture of Bradley Manning (they wouldn't do that if he wasn't guilty of something heinous would they?), the squealing from the Whitehouse and the condemnation of the leaks by the responsible media, and of course, the drip, drip, drip feeding of the information. In the absence of verification and the theatrical spectacle in lieu of verification, we are left with two things:

lies and propaganda.

In some respects, wikileaks has been and is an ongoing massive success. Want to manipulate the media ... release some lies via wikileaks; that way people will believe it.


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