Wikileaks Afghanistan: Taliban 'hunting down informants'
The Taliban has issued a warning to Afghans whose names might appear on the leaked Afghanistan war logs as informers for the Nato-led coalition.
By Robert Winnett in Washington
Published: 7:00AM BST 30 Jul 2010
Link to this video In an interview with Channel 4 News, Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, said they were studying and investigating the report, adding “If they are US spies, then we know how to punish them.”
The warning came as the US military's top officer, Admiral Mike Mullen said that Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, may already have blood on his hands following the leak of 92,000 classified documents relating to the war in Afghanistan by his website.
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Bradley Manning suspected source of Wikileaks documents scandal grew up in Wales following family split "Mr Assange can say whatever he likes about the greater good he thinks he and his source are doing, but the truth is they might already have on their hands the blood of some young soldier or that of an Afghan family," he said.
Information from the documents could reveal:
Names and addresses of Afghans cooperating with Nato forces
Precise GPS locations of Afghans
Sources and methods of gathering intelligence
The US government has called in the FBI to help hunt those responsible for leaking tens of thousands of secret documents about the Afghanistan war.
Robert Gates, the US Defense Secretary, warned that sources identified in the documents now risked being "targeted for retribution" by insurgents in Afghanistan.
He pledged a "thorough, aggressive investigation" to identify the leakers and said that steps were being taken to restrict access to classified documents in future.
Bradley Manning, a 22-year old intelligence analyst, is the prime suspect in the leak inquiry. He is currently already in custody in Kuwait after being arrested for allegedly leaking other information earlier this year.
However, he was previously caught boasting that he had leaked tens of thousands of documents on the Afghan war to the Wikileaks website. The Pentagon suspects that Manning may have accomplices within the military.
Earlier this week, Wikileaks published 90,000 documents – mostly reports detailing operations by American and other allied forces in Afghanistan between 2004 and 2009. The website is threatening to publish thousands more documents.
In his first comments on the massive leak, Mr Gates said that "the battlefield consequences of the release of these documents are potentially severe and dangerous for our troops, our allies and Afghan partners, and may well damage our relationships and reputation in that key part of the world." "Intelligence sources and methods, as well as military tactics, techniques and procedures will become known to our adversaries," he added.
The defense secretary promised "a thorough, aggressive investigation to determine how this leak occurred, to identify the person or persons responsible, and to assess the content of the information compromised."
Mr Gates promised to take steps to protect the lives of US service members as well as Afghans possibly exposed by the leaks.
The massive leak jeopardised the trust vital to gathering intelligence in the "field", said Mr Gates, a former CIA director.
"We have considerable repair work to do," he said.
"Obama Performed Secret Afghanistan Policy Switch Last Month"
Biden also said this recession was Bush's fault and we'd have 500K new jobs per month by now..
Examiner Bio Biden: Intelligence leaks fault of past administration
July 29, 3:02 PMLaw Enforcement ExaminerJim Kouri
Vice President Joe Biden: "All those leaks predate our policy."
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View all » Vice President Joe Biden today acknowledged that some people in Pakistan's intelligence community had supported the Taliban, but he said that situation is changing.
"That's been a problem in the past, it's a problem we're dealing with, and [it] is changing," Biden said in an interview that aired on NBC's "Today" television show. The interview with Ann Curry was taped Wednesday while Biden visited Fort Drum, New York.
Biden discussed the controversial WikiLeaks' Web posting of more than 70,000 classified documents on the war in Afghanistan spanning from January 2004 to December 2009.
In one portion of the leaked documents, there are allegations that members of the Pakistani intelligence agency supported the Taliban while accepting U.S. funding to fight against them.
"All those leaks predate our policy," Biden said. "Not one leak is consistent with our policy announced in December." He added that no U.S. money was diverted from its stated purposes in Pakistan. However, intelligence sources claim Biden is attempting to shift the blame and that Pakistani intelligence officers indeed funneled money to the Taliban.
"Biden conveniently and intentionally overlooks the fact that U.S. taxpayer money helped to kill American servicemen," said former intelligence officer and law enforcement official Sid Franes.
"And our supposed watchdogs -- the news media -- are helping Obama and Biden spin the story to let them off the hook," said Franes.
"When will this administration stop blaming Bush for mistakes, while claiming Bush's successes as their own?" asks political strategist Mike Baker.
In previous speeches, the Vice President gave credit for the Iraq surge's success to President Barack Obama, according to Baker
Meanwhile, insurgents killed six Afghan civilians and wounded three more in roadside bomb attacks in southern Afghanistan yesterday, military officials reported.
Four civilians were killed and three others were wounded when a bomb detonated in Zabul province's Mizan district. The wounded were airlifted to a military medical facility in Qalat.
In Nimroz province's Khash Rod district, two Afghan civilians were killed when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb. Earlier yesterday, numerous civilians reportedly were killed when their bus struck a roadside bomb in the Khash Rod district, officials said.
International Security Assistance Force Joint Command officials said the United Nations recently reported that roadside bomb incidents increased by 94 percent in the first four months of 2010 compared to the same period last year.
Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he's a columnist for The Examiner (examiner.com) and New Media Alliance (thenma.org). In addition, he's a blogger for the Cheyenne, Wyoming Fox News Radio affiliate KGAB (www.kgab.com). Kouri also serves as political advisor for Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor Michael Moriarty.
He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He's a news writer and columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he's syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. Kouri appears regularly as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Fox News Channel, Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, etc.
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