Last night, Wikileaks published the last of 133,000 cables that it’s made public in the last 10 days. The revelation came in part because the whole file of cables had been released on filesharing networks, and the password for the encrypted file was made public in a Guardian book about Wikileaks. Wikileaks’ side of the story is that the release is the Guardian’s fault.
The Guardian, quoting Daniel Domscheit-Berg, the former Wikileaks technical lead and founder of Openleaks, says that the release is Assange’s fault because he re-used passwords instead of creating a separate encrypted file for each news organization. No matter how the Guardian excuses itself, and even if Assange was sloppy with his password handling, publishing a password given them in confidence was a stunningly stupid move.
It’s been pretty clear for a while that Assange’s legal troubles have tied him up and made him ineffective, and that he was such a control freak that Wikileaks was a compromised operation without him. My working assumption was that organizations like Openleaks would take over, but it’s been at least 6 months since Openleaks was announced and it still hasn’t hosted any leaks. Domscheit-Berg is another strange duck who deleted bank memos after Assange fired him, so it’s unclear that he would be a better guardian of secrets than Assange.
In the meantime, a bunch of cables, some of which could possibly compromise sources, have been dumped on the Internet, and neither the Guardian nor Wikileaks is looking very trustworthy.