Why WikiLeaks Is Essential

WikiLeaks has been criminalized for doing, in essence, fundamental investigative work to keep people informed.

Are you as shocked as I am that the Obama administration is intent on crushing whistleblowers and treating Bradley Manning as if he were a mass murderer? 

It appears the administration is waging a war on transparency itself, to the detriment of us all. It is only the public that will be hurt when corporate and government wrongdoing is concealed and covered up.

That is why independent media is so important and why AlterNet needs your help. Our job is to fight to get the facts out that those in power are intent on keeping repressed. Please support our fundraising efforts so we can reach our goal of raising $55,000.

WikiLeaks has been criminalized for doing, in essence, fundamental investigative work to keep people informed. But people connected with WikiLeaks are being subpoenaed and prosecuted.

At AlterNet we feel we must publicize the stories that aren't getting the attention they deserve. And apparently you, our readers, agree.

Our article this week, "5 WikiLeaks Hits of 2011 That Are Turning the World on Its Head -- And That the Media Are Ignoring" by Rania Kahlek, was the most popular article on AlterNet (among hundreds) in more than a month. That was striking evidence of our readers' hunger for the facts they are not getting. We aim to publish articles that shine the light for our readers every day.

The United Nations recently declared that Internet access is a basic human right and cited WikiLeaks and the Arab Spring as crucial factors. We agree. And we will fight for that right.

The attack on WikiLeaks is a profound assault on our basic freedoms, including freedom of the press. We must be relentless and fight back against tyranny, against scapegoating people like Bradley Manning, and against protecting liars and cheaters. Corruption is what happens if there is no sunshine, when information is controlled. Secrecy breeds arrogance and abuse of power. The best government is an open government, with a tough independent media to hold them accountable.

That is where we come in. Please help us give you the information you deserve. Without your support, we cannot do our job. Make a contribution today.


Don Hazen is the executive editor of AlterNet.
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