The collection is massive. It contains 90,000 short reports of incidents that have occurred in the war between 2004-2009. The reports can be a bit cryptic to read since they are written in “military speak”. If you decide to take a look at them, you may want to peek at this tutorial first.
When looking at these reports, we obviously have to be skeptical. These reports have been leaked, but there is no way to verify them, and the various governments involved are already refuting their legitimacy. This is a situation that skeptics are used to, whether it be conspiracy theories, UFO reports, testimony of divine intervention,etc.
These records are extremely thorough however, and many of the records match up perfectly with well known events. This makes them a little harder than usual to dismiss outright. Some of these records are even shedding light on inconsistencies that are causing people to ask hard questions.
Consider the following news report in which 4 Canadian troops were killed and 6 were injured in an insurgent attack near kandahar on Sept 3 2006 at 4:30 AM (12:30PM our time):
This event is listed in the records, and unfortunately, it sheds completely different light on the incident:
It is listed as a “Friendly Fire” event. The Ottawa Citizen pointed out this inconsistency in this article last night. This is a big problem, if there is truth to be found in these reports. It would show that we are not getting the full story over here on our end.
PZ Myers posted a reflection on the problem that most media outlets are focused on the question of whether or not it was a good idea to release the reports, rather than asking questions about what is inside of them. I am interested to see which way the momentum swings on this story. Will it be an all out attack on Wikileaks’s legitimacy, or will questions like the above mentioned Canadian soldiers killed continue to pop out?
So who runs this Wikileaks site? How legitimately should we take them?
Well, here’s an interview with Julian Assange who is the person that heads this project. He sits down with Chris Anderson at TED to talk about what he is doing with the project.