Who Rules Us? Hackers, the Global Press and Our Leadership – in that Order: Liberation, France
Has WikiLeaks turned the pecking order of global decision making upside down? For Liberation, French historian Elisabeth Roudinesco asserts that if the recent massive disclosure of classified U.S. diplomatic cables through five of the world’s best known newspapers tells us nothing else, it’s that hackers now rule the world.
Historian Elisabeth Roudinesco, for Liberation, writes in part:
If the hacker [Assange] has been able to become a global Internet hero, he has also become the prey of his own machinations, as his “disciples” have now become disaffected. They accuse him of having compromised with the international press – El Pais, Le Monde, Der Spiegel, The New York Times, The Guardian – by accepting that this consortium sort through the documents, giving them control over the “revelations” they contain.
After shaking the world’s most powerful leaders, Assange is getting a dose of his own medicine: he is being accused by his own troops, who are more extreme than he is, of behaving like a dictator and breaking his promise of absolute transparency.
This escalation is based on well-known logic: a small group splits to create a new splinter group that will also, in turn, split again. The problem in this case is that this process of disclosure isn’t limited to a settling of scores between a master seized by conspiratorial madness and groupies seized by the fantasy of impeaching a failed leader. This shows that world leaders are now victims of the same dictatorship of transparency that now affects the private lives of citizens – and that only the law can provide protection. On the other hand, this shows that the media has become as powerful as government leaders in managing global affairs. The decision to disclose one archive rather than another is now, as we all know, more a matter of negotiation between hackers and the press then between the press and global leaders. In this three party game, those in charge are the data thieves, second are those who impose their selections on behalf of their own ethics, and third are those who negotiate with the seconds to try and stay ahead of something they cannot control.
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