Wikileaks Staffers Resign in Internal Revolt

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The decision by Wikileaks founder Julian Assange to release hundreds of thousands of classified Iraq War documents has led to a series of high level resignations at Wikileaks, by staffers who believe the documents have not been properly redacted to remove the names of collaborators and informers: Unpublished Iraq War Logs Trigger Internal WikiLeaks Revolt.

A domino chain of resignations at the secret-spilling site WikiLeaks followed a unilateral decision by autocratic founder Julian Assange to schedule an October release of 392,000 classified U.S. documents from the war in Iraq, according to former WikiLeaks staffers.

Key members of WikiLeaks were angered to learn last month that Assange had secretly provided media outlets with embargoed access to the vast database, under an arrangement similar to the one WikiLeaks made with three newspapers that released documents from the Afghanistan war in July. WikiLeaks is set to release the Iraq trove on Oct. 18, according to ex-staffers — far too early, in the view of some of them, to properly redact the names of U.S. collaborators and informants in Iraq.

“The release date which was established was completely unrealistic,” says 25-year-old Herbert Snorrason, an Icelandic university student who until recently helped manage WikiLeaks’ secure chat room. “We found out that the level of redactions performed on the Afghanistan documents was not sufficient. I announced that if the next batch did not receive full attention, I would not be willing to cooperate.”

Assange did not respond to e-mail queries from wired.com.

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