Diplomacy

U.S. Seeks to Contain WikiLeaks Damage

Let the fallout begin: WikiLeaks’ publication of 250,000 U.S. diplomatic cables has the Obama administration scrambling. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took off on Monday for Central Asia and the Middle East, where Russian President Dmitry Medvedev will be able to ask her about Robert Gates’ comment, “Russian democracy has disappeared.” The White House called the leak “reckless and dangerous.” Meanwhile, Reuters has a good roundup of what the leak's consequences may be: "The essence of our foreign policy is our ability to talk straight and honest with our foreign counterparts and to keep those conversations out of the public domain,” says one expert. “This massive leak puts that most basic of diplomatic requirements at risk in the future." Another disagrees: “Diplomats have always said rude things about each other in private, and everyone has always known that.”