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WikiLeaks: Saudi king urged U.S. to attack Iran

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 8, 2010


Saudi King Abdullah has repeatedly urged the United States to attack Iran‘s nuclear program and China directed cyberattacks on the United States, according to a vast cache of diplomatic cables released on Sunday in an embarrassing leak that undermines U.S. diplomacy.

The more than 250,000 documents, given to five media groups by the whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks, provide candid and at times critical views of foreign leaders as well as sensitive information on terrorism and nuclear proliferation filed by U.S. diplomats, according to The New York Times.

The White House condemned the release by WikiLeaks and said the disclosures may endanger U.S. informants abroad. WikiLeaks said its website was under attack and none of the underlying cables was visible there Sunday night, though some were posted by news organizations.

Among the revelations in Britain’s Guardian newspaper, which also received an advance look at the documents along with France’s Le Monde, Germany‘s Der Spiegel and Spain’s El Pais, King Abdullah is reported to have “frequently exhorted the U.S. to attack Iran to put an end to its nuclear weapons program.”

“Cut off the head of the snake,” the Saudi ambassador to Washington, Adel al-Jubeir, quotes the king as saying during a meeting with General David Petraeus in April 2008.

The leaked documents, the majority of which are from 2007 or later, also disclose U.S. allegations that China’s Politburo directed an intrusion into Google’s computer systems, part of a broader coordinated campaign of computer sabotage carried out by Chinese government operatives, private security experts and Internet outlaws, the Times reported.

MEDVEDEV “PLAYS ROBIN TO PUTIN’S BATMAN”

As described by German news weekly Der Spiegel, the cables contain tart comments such as a U.S. diplomat’s description of German Chancellor Angela Merkel as someone who “avoids risk and is seldom creative.”

Another document described by The New York Times cites a U.S. embassy cable raising the possibility that Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi may have had a romantic relationship with his Ukranian nurse, who is described as a “voluptuous blonde.”

The newspaper said many of the cables name diplomats’ confidential sources, from foreign lawmakers and military officers to human rights activists and journalists, often with a warning: “Please protect” or “Strictly protect.”

Comments such a description of Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Russia’s head of state, as playing “Robin to (Prime Minister Vladimir) Putin’s Batman,” are sure to embarrass the Obama administration and to complicate its diplomacy.

The White House said the release of the documents could endanger the lives of people who live under “oppressive regimes” and “deeply impact” the foreign policy interests of the United States, its allies and partners around the world.

“To be clear — such disclosures put at risk our diplomats, intelligence professionals, and people around the world who come to the United States for assistance in promoting democracy and open government,” White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said.

“By releasing stolen and classified documents, WikiLeaks has put at risk not only the cause of human rights but also the lives and work of these individuals,” he said.

@DEVASTATING

 

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