Why WikiLeaks is a worry: if diplomats can’t be candid, what value can we place in their information?

November 30, 2010

He could pitch his tent in Rome, but the Americans were not so welcoming.

The best form of defence, they say, is attack.

And Hillary Rodham Clinton is doing just that in response to the leak of secret US documents, which obviously attests to an embarrassing lack of security in the US State Department and/or its missions around the world.

The leak, Hillary is saying, is an attack on the international community.

Maybe it is.

It is also an attack on candour and on effective communication between diplomats and their political masters. If candour is removed from the equation, governments will be left basing their decisions on information lacking in candour, which can only result in bum decisions.

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