"The character of the purveyor, WikiLeaks' Julian Assange, hardly enhances confidence. Clearly, it is not the people's 'right to know' that animates him and his colleagues who remain anonymous while professing the virtues of transparency for everyone else. They are not exposing a Watergate conspiracy. Their ambition is simply to damage America any way they can. On earlier releasing 76,000 military documents about Afghanistan, Mr Assange talked of war crimes they would reveal, but Wiki's own reckless disclosures identified dozens of Afghans credited with providing intelligence to the US and thereby exposed them to a Taliban beheading. The infantile leftism of this Scarlet Pimpernel will be repugnant to many who would like to see him prosecuted for treason."
- Harold Evans in the Financial Times. For context, the Scarlet Pimpernel was the fictional hero of Baroness Emma Orczy's famous series of novels, a daring noble whose exploits (saving French heads from the guillotine) set 18th-century London abuzz. He was also the subject of occasional light verse:
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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