Feeds

Wikileaks outs 400,000 classified Iraq War docs

US military 'ignored torture'

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Wikileaks has released nearly 400,000 classified US military documents involving the Iraq War, defying warnings from the US government that disclosing the documents would put lives at risk.

Dubbed "the Iraq War Logs." the documents were posted to the whistleblower site at around 21:00 GMT on Friday, after they were released to various news organizations across the globe. According to the The Guardian, the documents show that US commanders ignored evidence of torture by Iraqi police and soldiers and that more than 15,000 civilians died in incidents that weren't previously reported.

Though US officials have said that they kept no official record of civilian deaths, the leaked documents also show that 66,081 civilian died among a total of 109,000 war fatalities, according to The Guardian. The UK paper also reports that a US Apache helicopter crew killed two insurgents on the ground although the men tried to surrender and that the crew was cleared to do so by a US military legal advisor.

It's believed that the document came from the same source that leaked roughly 92,000 classified documents involving the Afghan war to Wikileaks earlier this year, About 77,000 of those were posted to the site, drawing strong criticism from the Pentagon, which said that the leak would endanger Afghan civilians who cooperated with the US military.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declined to comment on today's leak specifically. But she said the government "should condemn in the most clear terms the disclosure of any information by individuals and or organizations which puts the lives of United States and its partners' service members and civilians at risk."

Defense department press secretary Geoff Morrell was more direct. "We deplore WikiLeaks for inducing individuals to break the law, leak classified documents and then cavalierly share that secret information with the world, including our enemies," he said in a statement.

"We know terrorist organizations have been mining the leaked Afghan documents for information to use against us, and this Iraq leak is more than four times as large. By disclosing such sensitive information, WikiLeaks continues to put at risk the lives of our troops, their coalition partners and those Iraqis and Afghans working with us. The only responsible course of action for WikiLeaks at this point is to return the stolen material and expunge it from their Web sites as soon as possible."

The 391,832 US Army Sigacts (Significant Actions) reports outed by Wikileaks document the war from January 1, 2004 to December 31, 2009 – though reports for two months are not included in the leak. You can read more from Al Jazeera here and The New York Times here. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
14 antivirus apps found to have security problems
Vendors just don't care, says researcher, after finding basic boo-boos in security software
'Things' on the Internet-of-things have 25 vulnerabilities apiece
Leaking sprinklers, overheated thermostats and picked locks all online
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu
Just slapping a patched OpenSSL on a machine ain't going to cut it, we're told
Multipath TCP speeds up the internet so much that security breaks
Black Hat research says proposed protocol will bork network probes, flummox firewalls
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Israel's Iron Dome missile tech stolen by Chinese hackers
Corporate raiders Comment Crew fingered for attacks
Tor attack nodes RIPPED MASKS off users for 6 MONTHS
Traffic confirmation attack bared users' privates - but to whom?
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.