Wikipedia, where everyone turns for information and research on various topics, a transformation of its comes to us in the form of Wikileaks, which are also more or less a source of information but basically are leaks which are unknown to the rest of the world. Wikileaks are controversial in nature because no one really knows the factual truth or the correctness behind the stories, yet they are published on Wikileaks to let people know of any current and sudden happening which might gather people’s interest and attention. Because in todays world, media is the most happening and turned out source of news and information, Wikileaks over the internet has grown popular over the years with their various stories relating to many people, popular and unpopular alike. It serves as an open platform for those who are willing to give out nay news piece of report about any famous person or any situation or event, thanks to the founder of this controversial movement, Julian Assange. Wikileaks serves it purpose of whistleblowing, and therefore keeps the identity of the publisher or the writer who leaks the report confidential and anonymous, due to which people are attracted to read the stories and thus Wikileaks manages to grab people’s attention. Here is a list of the top 10 Wikileaks’ most controversial stories leaked out till date which had garnered immense talks and rumours among people.
10. Mayawati and her tantrums
The then Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, India, Mayawati was reported to be called as egomaniac and eccentric in nature due to her various tantrums and whims about different situations. Right from her ordering an empty jet plane to fly to Mumbai for her paid of sandals to making a minister do sit-ups for not taking her permission to call UP’s governor, the stories had gathered much attention from the US embassies who tagged her addressing her as a fief with preposterous dreams of becoming the Prime Minister of India.
9. The thin line of difference between spies and diplomats
A cable leaked on Wikileaks in 2009 claimed that Hillary Clinton had asked some US and UN diplomats to gather all personal information available of the officials, such as credit card numbers, frequent flyer numbers and biometric information. Later, a spokesperson confirmed this story to be just a fallacy and that no information on any official was gained or collected by any diplomat.
8. Deadly Bollywood relations
Wikileaks had also released a story telling the world about the relations some Bollywood stars and actors have with underworld gangsters such as Dawood Ibrahim, Chhota Rajan and Chhota Shakeel. Stars maintained such relations with gangsters and therefore got their funding in terms of money and other costs in order to flourish themselves and the Bollywood industry, which later got legalized with the help of the power of such gangsters itself.
7. Scientology practices
In 2008, the Church of Scientology came up with some really absurd and strange practices. L Ron Hubbar, the founder of the Church of Scientology wrote down some principles and stated, “Finding a tight pack of crowd, calling them a crowd and then calling them as individuals until one has cognition” were some of the principles stated as stupid and baseless by Wikileaks. Another startling principle was the eighth one of the 8 levels of Operation Thetans deals with people who print or post anything against the church, and involves actions such as asking the officials to write down a letter scorning the man responsible and ask him to come to the church and confess. If he does, he would be slandered and tortured to an extent that he would be forced to commit suicide. If the writer does not come out and confess, he ill stay shut and never raise his voice again. Later, the Church threatened Wikileaks through a lawsuit but the proud owner effused to take the story down.
6. Australian government against the Internet
In 2009, Wikileaks criticized the Australian government for creating a great firewall of Australia by blocking users from accessing Wikipedia pages, YouTube videos and other religious sites, also blocking travel agent’s and a dentist’s official website. Other countries also felt that popular sites such as Google, YouTube and others were used to spy and gather information by the USA. Later, Edward Snowden served as the whistleblower on the US’s Prism program which used leading websites to track people all over the world.
5. Trafigura report by Minton
In 2009, John Minton had prepared a report on the multi-billion dollar company Trafigura, which deals in metals and energy and oil resources. The report stated that the dumping process used by this company in Africa was extremely hazardous to health and that the dumping of gasoline by the massive company could probably have left dangerous sulphur compounds on the land, increasing health concerns. Initially, this report was held up from printing by various newspapers but once it got published on Wikileaks did the world get aware of this menace and threatened the company to move to court if the matter was not resolved.
4. Hacking of Sarah Palin’s E-mail
The personal email accounts of the 2006 Alaskan governor Sarah Palin was hacked by a group of anonymous hackers, who used the accounts to give out information regarding her political campaign and also sent some absurd mails from her id. It was definitely a shocking invasion of the governor’s privacy, also being an extreme violation of law. Wikileaks had published snapshots of emails sent from this hacked account, before they were deleted by Palin.
3. Apache helicopter attack
A US Army Apache helicopter gunned and shot down 15 people including Reuters’ journalists and the whole footage was caught from the helicopter’s gun camera. The crew was also heard laughing and shouting saying ‘light them up’ and ‘dead b—–ds’, ‘keep shooting, keep shooting’. This footage took the world by a shock and the fact that the crew later reported saying that they could not differentiate whether it was a camera they were holding or a weapon forced them to shoot, which was extremely callous and called for.
2. Guantanamo Bay procedures
Wikileaks had reported that the White House under the rule of Barrack Obama kept the hazardous criminals away from the International Committee of Red Cross. A copy of ‘Standard Operating Procedures for Camp Delta-the protocol of the US Army’ released in 2007 which definitely agitated the Human Rights people when the facts were brought to light that the prisoners and criminals were brutally treated and were hardly given any gifts or rewards for their good and disciplined behavior in the cells.
1. 9/11 Pager Data
The 9/11 Pager data was one of the most controversial stories published and leaked on Wikileaks when innumerable pager messages were intercepted and released on the website, to provide a better understanding of the 9/11 attacks. Some messages went to say that WTC was hit by an airplane and a bomb, some other messages also going to the extent of claiming that US might attack Afghanistan, with another message claiming that a US helicopter was seen revolving around the WTC and later crashed into it. These messages were definitely intercepted through a telecommunications company, yet no one knew its actual identity, not even Wikileaks.