Interesting Editor’s Note in Monday’s New York Times about “The Decision to Publish Diplomatic Documents.”
First it says:
The articles published today and in coming days are based on thousands of United States embassy cables, the daily reports from the field intended for the eyes of senior policy makers in Washington. The New York Times and a number of publications in Europe were given access to the material several weeks ago and agreed to begin publication of articles based on the cables online on Sunday.
Sounds just like the WikiLeaked documents about the Afghanistan and Iraq wars the Times has published over the past few months, right?
Not so fast:
The documents — some 250,000 individual cables, the daily traffic between the State Department and more than 270 American diplomatic outposts around the world — were made available to The Times by a source who insisted on anonymity. They were originally obtained by WikiLeaks, an organization devoted to exposing official secrets, allegedly from a disenchanted, low-level Army intelligence analyst who exploited a security loophole.
In truth, WikiLeaks bypassed the Times this time, so the Gray Lady had to get the documents second-hand from the Guardian newspaper of London.
Why the snub?
Presumably because of this takedown of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in the Times last month.
Payback’s a bitch, eh?
Except when it’s not.