Leaks are having a good year, but today's discussion does not include the leaking underwater gusher at the Gulf of Mexico's Macondo well-site. Rather, the topic is leaked e-mails relating to global warming, the media, and -- most recently -- the war against jihadist terror in Afghanistan.
All three leaks speak of secrecy and power. They reek of adamant leftism. And they brim with collusion.
Remember the leaked e-mails late last year from England's University of East Anglia? They revealed that key players in the global-warming argument, contending carbon-creating man plays the central role in causing it, were secretly manipulating the data -- while simultaneously suppressing countervailing data and views.
There was secrecy and collusion to maintain power in the global-warming debate. Disclosure of the East Anglia e-mails crushed the man's-role argument that long has been a leftist precept -- and killed President Obama's congressional cap-and-trade initiative. The leaked East Anglia e-mails may have capped the global-warming gusher.
THEN CAME the leaked e-mails from JournoList, a cyber circle of about 400 self-styled mainline pressies (yet wacked-out leftists all -- conservatives and moderates were denied entry to the group). And what did they do? They made stuff up and developed distracting, disparaging, or dismissive lines of reasoning -- all to advance the Obama candidacy or the leftist cause.
Jeremiah Wright? Smear conservatives as racists. Sarah Palin -- an attractive, achieving, conservative woman who is liberal feminists' worst nightmare? Smear her as a ditzy bimbo who can't string together two coherent words.
The JournoList e-mails didn't change much. Liberalism long has overwhelmed the press that conceals its extremism behind words such as moderate, objective, and mainline. Today network television news is struggling, and many outlets in the print media -- newspapers, news magazines, and book publishers -- are on life-support. Moderates and conservatives have fled, and practitioners in the remnant are writing and broadcasting for the approval of those who share their views.Notes Andrew Ferguson in the July/August Commentary about Newsweek's downward spiral, "Journalists who write to satisfy people like themselves soon will run out of readers." Their power will dissipate, as well, and the lifted mask of secrecy in re JournoList suggests -- more than ever -- their crippling collusion.
AS A free-lancer for Rolling Stone -- a leftist magazine that began as a shill for rock bands -- brought down the commander of anti-jihadist forces in Afghanistan, so WikiLeaks may help to do for the rest of the enterprise. Think Daniel Ellsberg and the classified "Pentagon papers" and the help they gave to collapsing the American effort in Vietnam.
The other day on a TV panel, Ellsberg and the Rolling Stone guy (Michael Hastings) said America has no business being in Afghanistan. WikiLeaks' top hombre, Julian Assange, agrees. Blathering on about "war crimes" committed by NATO forces, he posted on the Web 91,000 illegally acquired Pentagon e-mails labeled secret -- and has helped reporters reach all his intended conclusions about them. As Ellsberg wanted U.S. troops out of Vietnam, so Hastings and Assange want them out of Afghanistan. Only then (goes the line) will war crimes committed by American forces stop.
Based in Sweden and hence beyond the easy reach of American law, WikiLeaks long has been a semi-secret operation regarding its methods of information acquisition. But its founders' ideology and intent scarcely can be anything but hostile to the Western (American) military offensive to throttle al-Qaeda and the Taliban -- and to rid the world of jihadist terror. Honk once if the release of classified American military e-mails advances American interests. Honk twice if they aid the enemy.
The Obama administration has reacted angrily to the leaking of the classified e-mails. Yet is that anger genuine? Will it last? Keep in mind that this is an administration led by a peacenik who, as a candidate, suggested we should leave Iraq and bomb not Afghanistan but Pakistan. That candidate, now president, publicly agonized last fall over whether to fight on in Afghanistan -- indeed whether victory is possible. He answered commendably yes on both counts. Still, he remains a president reluctant to link terror to radical Islam, or to employ -- or sanction within his administration -- use of the term jihad.
Will the WikiLeaked e-mails now fuel doubts among the public about the American role in Afghanistan -- and so wobble the knees of the president? That was the intent of Daniel Ellsberg, a patron saint of the leftist breed into which Barack Obama was born and raised -- and currently leads.