WikiLeaks Dump: The '9/11 of Diplomacy'?
Experts debate fallout
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 29, 2010 10:00 AM CST
This Aug. 14, 2010 photo shows WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in Stockholm, Sweden.   (AP Photo/Scanpix/Bertil Ericson, File)

(Newser) – What will WikiLeaks’ treasure trove of State Department cables mean for the world? Before their release, Italy’s foreign minister told Reuters they'd be the "9/11 of diplomacy" and would "blow up the trust between states." And now that they're out? "This won’t restrain" diplomats' "candor," one ex-British ambassador tells Reuters. As for the many, many embassy sources—analysts and foreign government employees—quoted in the cables, one tells the Wall Street Journal that he doesn’t really mind, “as long as what I’m quoted as saying is what I actually said.”

But the Chinese analyst said he felt bad for the State Department, predicting that the cables will “put a lot of pressure on them” and “might even make them feel embarrassed.” That American embarrassment may be the biggest fallout of the leak, Politico observes; the leaks reveal a US continually stymied in its global efforts. Expect Hillary Clinton to be in damage control mode today, as she flies to Kazakhstan to begin a trip to Central Asia and the Middle East.