Wikileaks

One event in the history of the Internet that I will always remember because of the way it grabbed my attention, is Wikileaks, and the scandal it caused in 2010. In April, a classified video of the 12 July 2007 Baghdad airstrike was released, showing two Reuters employees being fired at, after the pilots mistakenly thought the men were carrying weapons, which were in fact cameras. After the mistaken killing, the video shows U.S. forces firing on a family van that stopped to pick up the bodies. This footage was given to the Wikileaks team by the former US Army Private Chelsea Manning (the know as Bradley), which then lead to him being charged with 22 offences including aiding the enemy. He is currently serving 35 years in a maximum-security prison. The reason I think this is an important milestone in the history of the Internet is because it shows that the Internet isn’t a safe place where people can put anything they want. I feel strongly about this topic because I think it was right to expose the US Army like that as they committed a horrible crime and they have now locked up someone who was doing what they thought was right and they couldn’t cover up their countries militaries actions any longer. This topic reminds me of the Edward Snowden & NSA scandal. Just goes to show that whistleblowers are never safe and are very vulnerable.

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2 Comments

  1. I think it’s a really good point that the internet isn’t a safe place (in varying degrees, for different people) – do you think you could argue though the internet, like in this case, can be used for greater safety? By giving people a platform to people who can call out what is perhaps more dangerous in the real world.
    (Also, and I’m sure it’s unintentional but Chelsea Manning is misgendered here – ‘she’ not ‘he’.)

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  2. I couldn’t agree more, the internet is definitely not a safe place. The events of Wikileaks are just further evidence in how vulnerable the world of internet leave us. As much as it assist us in sorting, collecting, researching and storing our information /data , it puts us at risk, whether the information is sensitive to not, for our information to fall into the wrong hands. Yes of course, the internet provides us to a certain extent anonymity, which gives a chance to portray our opinions, and thoughts without repercussion, however it also leaves a gap for individuals who want to create hostility, havoc and indoctrinate the vulnerable. i.e the so called Islamic State fear campaigning, And as the internet connects world wide, the affects reaches a bigger and wider audiences.

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