Today’s New York Times has an article that points up a positive aspect of Wikileaks… the opportunity for the public to appreciate the cogent analysis and creative writing of the U.S. Foreign Service. But perhaps the future impact of the leaks will go well beyond a new respect for under-appreciated diplomats.
Reading these leaked reports gives me the impression of a world-wide fraternity, as if the diplomatic world was the venue for a global high stakes invitation-only poker game. Wikileaks has meant that one of the players (or was it the dealer?) has just dropped his cards on the table and also opened the blinds to the outside. From the outside looking in, it seems that everyone in the room is talking and joking with each other, posturing as they play their hand. The overall impression of the world of the decision makers is one of competitive fraternity, not a world of irreconcilable uncommunicative factions, as the media or ideological purists might portray it, but a world of players in a shared social space. Contemplating the existence of that common space, I find hope for potential solutions to the world’s “intractable” problems.