gra-dult-hood n.

1. A stage in life between graduation and adulthood.
2. Gradulthood often involves jobs that don't fulfil a graduate's expectations.
3. A term coined during the recession.

News Views: Wikileaks

For the past few weeks the worldwide media have provided daily revelations from the whistle-blowing website ‘Wikileaks’. On Sunday 28th November the site published 251,287 leaked United States embassy cables, which have sent shockwaves around the world. ‘Wikileaks’ founder Julian Assange has since been arrested in the UK on unrelated charges following a warrant for his arrest being issued in Sweden. Assange is still imprisoned despite being granted bail, but I’m assuming you know all this already?

Having just had a look at the summary of the cables on the BBC website, here are a few that caught my eye:

  • In 2004, a German citizen was snatched in Macedonia and allegedly taken to a secret prison by the CIA.
  • Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is described as "feckless and vain" and had profited from a "nefarious connection" with Russian PM Vladimir Putin.
  • The UK has kept quiet about a loophole allowing the US to continue storing cluster bombs on its territory despite an international ban.
  • Diplomats were instructed under Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's name to collect DNA samples, fingerprints and credit card details of key UN officials.
  • Senior US officials believed Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin could have known about the plan to murder dissident former spy Alexander Litvinenko in London, according to documents released by WikiLeaks.

Now I’m fully in favour of cables being released in relation to corrupt officials, or illegal acts etc. but I’m just not sure how much information I actually want to know. I find the cables really interesting, and if they’re out there I definitely want to read them but I don’t think you can have a society where everyone knows everything that goes on behind the scenes. I don’t think governments can operate fully with complete transparency. But at the same time, the revelations have revealed wrongdoings from the corridors of government that need to be stopped. My point is admittedly contradictory, and provides no answers or alternatives but here goes…I don’t think we can operate with absolute transparency within governments, but at the same time, who decides what we know? The people in government obviously cannot be entrusted with that decision.

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