Judy Woodruff speaks to former national security advisers Zbigniew Brzezinski and Stephen Hadley about the impact of the release of confidential diplomatic documents by WikiLeaks.
Zbigniew Brzezinski doesn’t think all the leaked information coming out of Wikileaks is a result of Army PFC Bradley Manning, as a matter of fact he suspects a foreign intelligence service may be providing the more embarrassing leaks.
In a PBS interview with Judy Woodruff, Dr. Brzezinski lays out his thinking:
JUDY WOODRUFF: Dr. Brzezinski, what do you think the fallout is going to be?
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI, former adviser, U.S. National Security: …
The real issue is, who is feeding Wikipedia on this issue — Wiki — Wiki — WikiLeaks on this issue? They’re getting a lot of information which seems trivial, inconsequential, but some of it seems surprisingly pointed.
JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, what are you referring to?
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI: Well, for example, there are references to a report by our officials that some Chinese leaders favor a reunified Korea under South Korea.
This is clearly designed to embarrass the Chinese and our relationship with them. The very pointed references to Arab leaders could have as their objective undermining their political credibility at home, because this kind of public identification of their hostility towards Iran could actually play against them at home…
JUDY WOODRUFF: And what is it — what are you worried about with regard to the knowledge that…
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI: It’s not a question of worry. It’s, rather, a question of whether WikiLeaks are being manipulated by interested parties that want to either complicate our relationship with other governments or want to undermine some governments, because some of these items that are being emphasized and have surfaced are very pointed.
And I wonder whether, in fact, there aren’t some operations internationally, intelligence services, that are feeding stuff to WikiLeaks, because it is a unique opportunity to embarrass us, to embarrass our position, but also to undermine our relations with particular governments.
For example, leaving aside the personal gossip about Sarkozy or Berlusconi or Putin, the business about the Turks is clearly calculated in terms of its potential impact on disrupting the American-Turkish relationship.
JUDY WOODRUFF: Just criticizing the people around…
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI: And the top leaders, Erdogan and Davutoglu and so forth, are using some really, really, very sharp language.
JUDY WOODRUFF: But this is 250 — it’s a quarter-of-a-million documents.
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI: Precisely.
JUDY WOODRUFF: How easy would it be to seed this to make sure that it was slanted a certain way?
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI: Seeding — seeding it is very easy.
I have no doubt that WikiLeaks is getting a lot of the stuff from sort of relatively unimportant sources, like the one that perhaps is identified on the air. But it may be getting stuff at the same time from interested intelligence parties who want to manipulate the process and achieve certain very specific objectives.
It should be noted that while ZB suspects foreign elements behind some of the leaks, it could very well be internal U.S. elements unhappy with the direction the President is taking things. Wikileaks may have both domestic and foreign sources. There could very well be more than one playing this game.