And the big news from the Wikileaks revelations is…

… that it turns out the world as told through secret US diplomacy is, er…, pretty much the same as the one we always thought.

Saudis not keen on Iranians? Chinese frustrated by North Koreans? Member of the Royal Family rude to someone else? Excuse me while I hold the front page for that scoop.

Some of the detail is fascinating but the big picture so far is that the secret world turns out to be pretty much the same as the public one.

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  • I was just watching coverage in a bar on the continent. It struck me that the things American diplomats said in private were pretty much in line with what some national politicians say about their counterparts in public.

  • * Member of the Royal family advocating ‘return to the great game’ and bemoaning investigations into potentially illegal arms deals as ‘bad for business’.
    * Saudis apparently living with an “emirate” run from Iran in eastern Saudi Arabia (and Yemen and Bahrain) and calling for early action on Iran because if Iran gets the bomb their position may become untenable (for those keeping socre the areas listed as Iranian ’emirates’ by the US intelligence constitute most of the oil rich regions of the Middle East). UAE rapidly arming itself for forseeable conventional warfare.
    * Yemeni government now revealed to have been presenting US strikes as Yemeni, something it did presumably because it foresaw the consequences on Yemeni public opinion were this to be known as very bad (nice one wikileaks! )
    * Unelected unaccountable Australian of unknown funding now holding US State Department over a barrel with the threat that many of the seemingly benign telegrams he released (see e.g. the one pertaining to DRC) have presumably companion pieces the contents of which the state department knows. This guy is facing rape allegations which are either trumped up as he claims in which case he’s still attempting to gain leverage over the US government with the threat of releasing documents hazardous to US national security or the allegations are possibly true and he’s using his access to this information in an attempt to pervert the course of justice.

    I’d say those four points are enough to be taking the issue seriously for the moment.

  • Andrew Suffield 29th Nov '10 - 11:01pm

    While many of the details here are interesting, perhaps the most important thing to come of this might be that US political cronies will stop believing that they will get away with secrecy. Maybe next time they’ll think before they act, out of fear of their eventual discovery, if nothing else.

  • Andrew Suffield 30th Nov '10 - 7:39am

    I fear the policy of the new players will be a lot worse.

    I’m not sure that’s even possible. The Americans are one of the worst in history.

  • Hilary Clinton ordering her diplomats to spy on the U.N. get bank account details and any info possible on people. You knew that was going on did you ? Saudi’s funding Al Qaeda doesn’t worry you ? Or that one of Britain’s hapless bumbling Royals moans about criminal investigations into massive corruption in arms deals to the same Saudi’s ?

    Don’t worry, there is far more to come. This is just the beginning.

  • @Mark Pack

    There’s a very big difference between suspicion and proof.

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