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The American mind exposed

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AN unprecedented wave of despondency is sweeping through the global corridors of power since the whistleblower website Wikileaks decided to publish classified diplomatic cables of the American government.

Wikileaks a fortnight ago began publishing part of the 250 000 classified US diplomatic documents in its possession.

The exposures contain top secret cables sent to Washington by US diplomats from around the world.

From Afghanistan to the Vatican the US cables contain extremely delicate intelligence about the world’s most important people and institutions.

With disclosures ranging from cables on South Africa’s Julius Malema to Cuba’s Fidel Castro, Wikileaks has pushed the boundaries of freedom of expression by bringing into the public domain diplomatic secrets closely guarded by the US government since 1966.

The US government is not only annoyed but also embarrassed by the cables imbroglio while world governments and high-profile politicians across the globe are worried sick that sooner or later their dirty linen will be washed in public and the world will soon know what were hitherto closely guarded secrets.

Published cables on Zimbabwe have already left the American government with egg on the face after the secret files revealed that while the US demonised President Robert Mugabe in public behind closed doors the Americans admired the veteran politician. 

In the cables, 86-year-old Mugabe was described as “superb debater, always looking for proof and asking his underlings regarding details”.

Elsewhere, cables published by The Guardian, a British newspaper, yesterday indicated that the Vatican felt “offended” that Ireland failed to respect its “sovereignty” by asking high-ranking churchmen to answer questions from an Irish government commission probing decades of sex abuse of minors by clergy.

Apparently the Wikileaks avalanche has put the Americans on the back-foot, forcing them to reassure the alarmed world community that the cables, although filed by US diplomats from across the world, do not represent US government policy. 

In Maseru the US state department launched a pre-emptive public relations offensive telling journalists in the capital on Thursday that they should not read much into the Wikileaks cables when cables on Lesotho are published in due course.

Of course the Americans only managed to raise curiosity on the Wikileaks cables among local journalists.

In fact, Vuvuzela is looking forward to the day Wikileaks will upload diplomatic cables on Lesotho.

It will be interesting to know what the American diplomats posted to Maseru since 1966 had to say about the mountain kingdom.

Who does not want to know what American diplomats said about our kings, prime ministers and our politics?

But from Thursday’s media teleconference it looks like the Americans are apologising in advance for what could be the most unflattering assessment of the country by its former diplomats.

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