Ay the p resses s topped a h istory of the p entagon

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AY THE P RESSES S TOPPED : A H ISTORY OF THE P ENTAGON P APERS C ASE 33–47 (1996). 13. See infra text accompanying notes 86–89. 14. See infra Part II.B.
2012] WIKILEAKS AND TRANSPARENCY 759 the secrecy regulations, which are not laws in most cases, in this country”; 15 to Yochai Benkler, the site represents the emerging “networked fourth estate” that fundamentally challenges incumbent media institutions 16 and that “mark[s] the emergence of a new decentralized, global, and networked model of the watchdog function.” 17 It also plays a prominent role in what one commentator has termed the “Age of Transparency”: an era of networked communication in which social media and so-called crowd- sourced information are inexorably changing the shape of the government and its relationship to its citizens. 18 The WikiLeaks story, in this account, is one in which the site’s disclosures will necessarily change what the state does and how it performs. To its most vociferous critics, however, WikiLeaks constitutes a dangerous, illegal disruption to state security and operations that must be stopped by any means possible. 19 The WikiLeaks narrative, in sum, presents a struggle over the promise and limits of transparency and disclosure’s presumed effects. WikiLeaks was created in late 2006 by what was then described as an anonymous “team” of open-source computer engineers (i.e., hackers) and political activists who sought to expose corrupt and oppressive regimes throughout the world. 20 Prior to its most famous (at least to American and Western European politics) releases, which began in mid-2010, WikiLeaks had gained international attention by posting a mix of raw documents concerning diverse newsworthy public figures and governments in the United States, Africa, and Western Europe. 21 In all of these releases, one or 15. John Nichols, Dan Ellsberg on WikiLeaks & the Essential Democratic Question: Who Will Tell the People? , N ATION (July 26, 2010, 7:19 PM), - ellsberg-wikileaks-essential-democratic-question-who-will-tell-people (internal quotation marks omitted). 16. Benkler, supra note 12, at 311–12. 17. Yochai Benkler, The Real Significance of WikiLeaks , A M . P ROSPECT , June 2011, at 31, 33, available at (book review). 18. S IFRY , supra note 12, at 137–68; see also Clay Shirky, WikiLeaks and the Long Haul , C LAY S HIRKY (Dec. 6, 2010, 12:03 PM), - long-haul/ (praising WikiLeaks for allowing citizens to know what the state is doing and thereby creating “the democracy of citizens distrusting rather than legitimizing the actions of the state”). 19. See Benkler, supra note 12, at 331–33 (summarizing what he characterizes as the “political attack” on WikiLeaks).

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