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Feb-25-2012 16:34printcommentsVideo

Wikileaks Scandal, Embarrassing for US

Press TV has conducted an interview with Michael Maloof, former Pentagon official, to share his opinion on this issue.

Bradley Manning
Manning during a recent court appearance.

(TEHRAN Press TV) - The leakage of classified information by former US Army soldier, Bradley Manning, to whistleblower website, WikiLeaks, is a source of embarrassment for the US government, a former Pentagon official tells Press TV.

Manning has been formally charged with involvement in the largest leakage of classified information in the American history.

The 24-year-old is accused of passing hundreds of thousands of military field reports from Iraq and Afghanistan and US diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks between November 2009 and May 2010 when he was serving in Iraq.

He could face a life sentence for disclosing classified documents.

Press TV has conducted an interview with Michael Maloof, former Pentagon official, to share his opinion on this issue.

The following is a transcript of the interview:

Press TV: How do you especially as a former government official assess Bradley Manning, the intelligence breach and the ensuing embarrassment for the US government?

Maloof: Number one it is an intelligence breach from the standpoint the classified information was leaked out. It is not WikiLeaks fault, it would be the way the system runs that it would be Manning’s fault.

Secondly it is an embarrassment because much of the information that was leaked was not necessarily national security related. It was meant to hide embarrassments and embarrassing statements.

But the fact that the system itself does not preclude or allow distinctions of that kind, the fact that it was classified, thereby puts him in jeopardy and probably he will get a life sentence as a result of it.

Press TV: Mr. Maloof, in context of affecting US actions worldwide, do you believe disclosures such as the WikiLeaks trove have it all changed the US foreign policy?

Maloof: I think it probably has not changed foreign policy at all. I think what it has done, is reveal just how bad and slipshod US policy especially in the Middle East has been and what it has done has caused the system for a classification to tighten up and be much more restrictive and who has access to what information.

So that kind of a change has occurred. It has not altered the behavior of the United States whatsoever in terms of its actions and I doubt that it ever would.

For that matter, people probably do not recall what was said in many respects but people overseas I am sure remember that it was quite embarrassing, some many of the revelations but I have not seen any change in behavior by the United States as a result of those revelations and that is a very unfortunate development.

Press TV: Bradley Manning’s case has been closely followed by a devout group of supporters. Is his legacy going to be spoken about for years to come in the US considering the extent of the information he released?

Maloof: I think the revelations themselves and the extent of the revelations probably will be discussed. It does constitute the largest amount in volume in terms of classified matter which has been leaked.

It is not a serious; however some other leaks that occurred during and right after the cold war particularly like the Walker case were very damaging to national security.

The information that he leaked was more embarrassing. It did not really affect national security as such from the US perspective. It was just more of an embarrassment giving some of the comments that were revealed and some of the attitudes that were portrayed, but it was not a damaging national security matter from previous espionage cases that we saw with Ames and Walker in previous years.

Special thanks to Press TV

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Stacey February 26, 2012 11:16 pm (Pacific time)

Embarrassing! The video I saw looked like murder to me. I've never heard anyone state, "I'm so embarrassed I murdered innocent people." I think Manning did the moral thing. He did the right thing. If the US Government is embarrassed, then maybe they shouldn't sanction bad behavior.

Anonymous February 26, 2012 10:02 am (Pacific time)

Stephen you assert all this inside knowledge, tell me did you work in intelligence in the military or federal government? Or is this inside info something you got from Ian Fleming or similar sources?

Ted Reynolds February 26, 2012 5:21 am (Pacific time)

Yes, it must be most embarrassing to the military to be revealed as uncaring, but incompetent murderers, and to the government for revealing them as lying constantly to the people to cover their asses . . . but don't weep for them, they've already gotten over it, and gone on to the next war crimes and deceptions.

stephen February 25, 2012 6:24 pm (Pacific time)

My opinion: Manning was probably very cool...Assange got his hands on it, then it went to intelligence got diluted and changed, mostly the parts about israel and so forth..for those that research, we already knew everything printed from assange, but its obvious it was edited in israels favor..ok then...thats about it in a nutshell :-)

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