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Wikileaks publishes secret CIA memo
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Wikileaks posted a classified CIA memo on Wednesday, three weeks after the Pentagon warned the self-described whistleblower website to return a huge cache of of unpublished documents believed to be in its possession.
The secret memo, titled “What If Foreigners See the United States as an 'Exporter of Terrorism?',” isn't likely to cause US intelligence officials to lose much sleep. It was drafted six months ago by members of the CIA's “Red Cell,” a unit established to offer agents food-for-thought on a host of issues. “These sorts of analytic products – clearly identified as coming from the Agency's 'Red Cell' – are designed to simply provoke thought and present different points of view,” the CIA said in a statement issued on Wednesday.
Still, the release indicates that Wikileaks remains undaunted by veiled Pentagon threats following last month's airing of some 77,000 mostly classified records related to the US war in Afghanistan. Wikileaks founder Julian Assange said two weeks ago he would not be intimidated into suppressing an additional 15,000 documents he is still holding. He has said he's weeks away from releasing the documents, which some pundits have warned could be even more explosive than the first batch.
The latest Wikileak also came on the same day that prosecutors in Sweden cleared Assange of sex-abuse charges, according to the Associated Press. He is still under investigation for “molestation,” an offense that's not considered a sex crime in that country, “a wide range of offenses, including reckless conduct or inappropriate physical contact with another adult, and can result in fines or up to one year in prison,” the AP said. The charges were based on the accounts of two women who said consensual sex they had with Assange that later turned non-consensual when he refused to use a condom The Guardian reported Tuesday.
The three-page memo published Wednesday warns that the US could lose influence with allies it counts on to hunt out terrorists if its citizens based abroad are viewed as potential threats.
“If the US were seen as an exporter of terrorism, foreign partners may be less willing to cooperate with the United States on extrajudicial activities, including detention, transfer, and interrogation of suspects in third party countries,” the memo, dated February 2, stated. ®