JUNE 14, 2010
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Huffington Post | Bianca Bosker First Posted: 06-11-10 02:37 PM | Updated: 06-11-10 05:22 PM
Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is being hunted by Pentagon investigators who believe that he may be close to releasing classified State Department documents that "could do serious damage to national security," the Daily Beast reports.
According to information obtained by the Daily Beast from government officials, the Pentagon fears Assange may have received the secret State Department communications from Army intelligence analyst Bradley Manning, who was recently arrested for leaking the "Collateral Damage" video to Wikileaks, among other materials.
Adrian Lamo, a computer hacker with whom Manning had corresponded, reported Manning after the intelligence specialist told Lamo he had leaked to Wikileaks some 260,000 secret State Department records, in addition to the "Collateral Damage" video and a document describing Wikileaks as a security threat. Manning reportedly told Lamo the hundreds of thousands of State Department documents he leaked to the whistleblower website detailed "almost criminal political back dealings."
The Daily Beast writes that the classified cables that Manning may have obtained--and shared with Assange--"went out over interagency computer networks available to the Army and contained information related to American diplomatic and intelligence efforts in the war zones in Afghanistan and Iraq, the diplomat said."
According to Wired, Manning told Lamo of the leaked documents, "Hillary Clinton, and several thousand diplomats around the world are going to have a heart attack when they wake up one morning, and find an entire repository of classified foreign policy is available, in searchable format, to the public."