The reaction to WikiLeaks release of secret diplomatic cables, or “Cablegate” as it is being called, has had mixed reactions. Some foreign officials are condemning the release in the strongest terms possible, while others have expressed vindication. Others are laughing it off.
Mixed reactions to WikiLeaks and ‘Cablegate’
Putting aside that the term “Cablegate” furthers overuse of the “gate” suffix to controversies, the reaction from foreign officials to the leak of diplomatic cables has been mixed, according to the New York Times. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad labeled the documents Western propaganda aimed at undermining relations in the Middle East. The WikiLeaks State Department cables’ release contained statements by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, harshly criticizing Pakistan, among others. The Saudi government stated the reports on Saudi-Pakistani relations are “misleading and contrary to facts,” and “the people of Saudi Arabia have always stood behind Pakistan.” The report claims King Abdullah said that “when the head is rotten, it affects the whole body” concerning the Pakistani government and its nuclear programs.
Cautious response from others
Other governments have been more restrained. The Russian government did not comment on the assertion that President Dimitry Medvedev is “Robin” to Prime Minister Valdimir Putin’s “Batman.” Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi of Italy reportedly “had a good laugh” when it was revealed that some see him as a womanizing party animal.
Israel hails documents as vindication
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is said to “not keep promises” in the leaked documents, welcomed some of the cables as a vindication of Israel’s stance on Iran, according to The Guardian. Officials from Bahrain and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia allegedly stressed the need to neutralize Iran, with King Abdullah opining it was best to “cut off the head of the snake.” Netanyahu stated that previous portrayals of Israel a threat to peace in the Middle East were at last shown to be “bankrupt,” and that consensus finally existed that Iran was the greatest threat.