November 29, 2010, New York, NY — In response to reports of a criminal investigation into the release of thousands of classified United States files and military documents by Wikileaks in July 2010, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) issued the following statement:
In the courts, in Congress and with international allies, the United States has unreasonably insisted on keeping massive amounts of information secret. Transparency and accountability are essential elements of good government. For that reason, CCR strongly believes that the release of information by Wikileaks is good for democracy. Democracy thrives on informed citizens and Wikileaks is helping people know what the U.S. and other governments are doing as opposed to what they are telling the public.
The U.S. government under both the Bush and Obama administrations has been characterized by secrecy and lies since 9/11 such that a vacuum of information has developed. Wikileaks has punctured that vacuum and the information released is vitally important to the public interest.
President Obama has the opportunity to turn the tide on the way illegal or troubling revelations about the U.S. government’s activities are dealt with—this administration can end the secrecy and should be held accountable. With the exception of information that would identify and endanger the safety of the individuals named in the documents—which Wikileaks asked the U.S. to advise on without success—the release of this information will make the U.S. a stronger and healthier democracy.
The Center for Constitutional Rights works with communities under threat to fight for justice and liberation through litigation, advocacy, and strategic communications. Since 1966, the Center for Constitutional Rights has taken on oppressive systems of power, including structural racism, gender oppression, economic inequity, and governmental overreach. Learn more at ccrjustice.org.