Thursday, December 9, 2010

One of the things we have learned from Wikileaks concerning Climate Gate

Apparently our state department and CIA were interested in getting the right political solution at the Copenhagen climate meeting.  Those cables have been released and pounced upon by reporters.  This is from Pajamas Media but the first stories about  it came out of the UK's Guardian newspaper.  This is the Pajamas Media summation.
WikiLeaks Cables Confirm Worst Fears of Climate Skeptics
by Charlie Martin
Just a year ago, the Climategate files — a collection of emails, data, and computer source code — were somehow purloined from the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit and made public. Pajamas Media was one of the first news organizations to cover them, with the first breaking news story out within hours of their first discovery (“Hacker Releases Data Implicating CRU in Global Warming Fraud“).

The full consequences are not yet clear, but the files’ release probably led to the collapse of the Copenhagen climate conference — to which the Obama administration had committed no little amount of political capital — and certainly contributed to the public’s increasing skepticism about the supposed consensus of climate science.

On December 3rd, the Guardian newspaper in the United Kingdom published one of a series of stories based on the cables, this one titled “WikiLeaks cables reveal how U.S. manipulated climate accord.” The United States really was applying considerable political and diplomatic pressure on other players; the scientific “consensus” had long since been subsumed by the pressure to score a political win. As the Guardian put it:

Hidden behind the save-the-world rhetoric of the global climate change negotiations lies the mucky realpolitik: money and threats buy political support; spying and cyberwarfare are used to seek out leverage.
The bribes — sorry, I mean promised aid — was no mean amount of money. The Guardian reports amounts in the tens and hundreds of millions of dollars. The government of the Maldives set their price at $30 million. With a population of roughly 300,000, that is $100 per person in a country where the average household gets by on $450 a year.

This pressure, however, wasn’t limited to financial transactions: the United States was developing intelligence on the other participants in the conferences.

Seeking negotiating chips, the U.S. State Department sent a secret cable on July 31, 2009, seeking human intelligence from UN diplomats across a range of issues, including climate change. The request originated with the CIA. As well as countries’ negotiating positions for Copenhagen, diplomats were asked to provide evidence of UN environmental “treaty circumvention” and deals between nations.

At the same time, foreign powers — most probably at least including the People’s Republic of China — used sophisticated social engineering and cyberwar methods to get leverage in the upcoming negotiations.
There is much more on this, go here.

No comments:

Post a Comment