Skip to comments.Ellsberg Calls on Insiders to Leak Details of Alleged War Plans
Posted on 09/14/2006 8:41:56 AM PDT by wjersey
When Daniel Ellsberg, the defense analyst, leaked the Pentagon Papers to the press in 1971, it created one of the most significant newspaper stories -- and battles -- of the century. One thing it did not do was prevent the Vietnam War, although it may have shortened it. Now he is calling on officials within the government to leak "the Pentagon Paper of the Middle East" to modern reporters, to short-circuit another possible war.
Ellsberg's challenge is found in the October issue of Harper's magazine, to appear next week. E&P has obtained an advance copy.
The article is titled, "The Next War," with the conflict in question a possible face-off between the U.S. and Iran. Ellsberg, based on unconfirmed reporting by Seymour Hersh and others, believes there is a "hidden crisis," with government insiders aware of "serious plans for war with Iran" while "congress and the public remain largely in the dark."
His remedy: "Conscientious insiders" need to leak hard evidence to the press and public, while risking their current and future employment, as he did in the early 1970s.
But Ellsberg is hardly the hero of his own story. While proud of what he did, he faults himself for waiting far too long in thed 1960s. If he had leaked in 1964, it might have halted the entire enterprise in its tracks, he feels. In the same way, he hails former Clinton and Bush terrorism expert Richard Clarke for blowing the whistle on trumped-up evidence used to support the invasion of Iraq -- but as in his case, this came after the Iraq adventure had already come to fruition.
Indeed, Ellsberg had called for insiders, such as Clarke, to come forward before the Iraq invasion, in a January 2003 interview with E&P.
Now, in the Harper's article, therefore, he declares: "Assuming Hershs so-far anonymous sources mean what they saythat this is, as one puts it, 'a juggernaut that has to be stopped'I believe it is time for one or more of them to go beyond fragmentary leaks unaccompanied by documents.
"That means doing what no other active official or consultant has ever done in a timely way: what neither Richard Clarke nor I nor anyone else thought of doing until we were no longer officials, no longer had access to current documents, after bombs had fallen and thousands had died, years into a war. It means going outside executive channels, as officials with contemporary access, to expose the presidents lies and oppose his war policy publicly before the war, with unequivocal evidence from inside. Simply resigning in silence does not meet moral or political responsibilities of officials rightly 'appalled' by the thrust of secret policy. I hope that one or more such persons will make the sober decisionaccepting sacrifice of clearance and career, and risk of prisonto disclose comprehensive files that convey, irrefutably, official, secret estimates of costs and prospects and dangers of the military plans being considered.
"What needs disclosure is the full internal controversy, the secret critiques as well as the arguments and claims of advocates of war and nuclear 'options'the Pentagon Papers of the Middle East....
"The personal risks of doing this are very great. Yet they are not as great as the risks of bodies and lives we are asking daily of over 130,000 young Americans with many yet to join them in an unjust war. Our country has urgent need for comparable courage, moral and civil courage, from its public servants. They owe us the truth before the next war begins."
Ellsberg's most recent book is "Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers."
One bullet,one collaborator.
Something that could potentionally prevent, shorten or end a war...is not good?
I despise the fact that sedition is completely legal in America now. How the hell can a country defend itself this way?
TRAITORS SHOULD BE SHOT. Nuff said.
We have to stop playing around with people who leak information. Lock them up or shoot them for treason.
Shortening a war is Great when it protects those we love.
Shortening a war so it can be fought later when the enemy is stronger is just plain stupid.
The little worm misses the media limelight.
What a putz.
I didn't know this turd was still suckin' in air. Pity.
Why Ellesberg never got the Rosenberg treatment escapes me.
Neville? Is that you?
Glad to here that traitors still have a voice on FR, stuey.
And the circle is now complete.
Depends on the side effects. Wars are not just meaningless spasms of violence. There are *usually* issues involved.
War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.
John Stuart Mill
English economist & philosopher (1806 - 1873)
See also Patrick Henry, a "warmonger" of the late 18th century. "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death". (He got Liberty!)
You mean like surrender?
Exactly what in my statement was traitorous?
And if someone does, and violates the secrets act, would he be considered a co-conspirator, and prosecutable?
Doesn't *everything* usually depend on *something*? Sounds relative.
No, did I say that?
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