Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Kiwileaks and "national security"

Ever since Wikileaks leaked the US diplomatic cables, Americans have been demanding that they stop, on the basis of "national security". Now, over in Dim Post's comments, that disease has come to New Zealand:

These documents are classified for a reason. Sure they might be widely available now, but stop helping to spread them further. I don’t care if they’re compromising do individuals, they’re also compromising to national security.
Apart from the obvious response of calling bullshit, we should also ask "whose?" Whose "national security" should we censor ourselves to protect?

New Zealand's? These aren't our government's secrets. And while they have embarrassed the powerful and exposed their double-dealing and hypocrisy, that isn't "national security". Which leaves America's. But to point out the obvious, I'm not an American. I find the claim that democratic citizens own loyalty to their governments dubious enough as is (it gets the relationship between citizen and state precisely backwards); the idea that I somehow owe loyalty to someone else's government is even more absurd. Unless people are going to die directly as a result, I have no reason to keep America's secrets (and then, I'm caring about the risk to people's lives, not the risk to some other state's "national security").