• Germany edition
 
Wikileaks reveals potential terrorist targets
An aerial picture of Sylt. Photo: DPA

Wikileaks reveals potential terrorist targets

Published: 06 Dec 2010 12:33 GMT+01:00
Updated: 06 Dec 2010 12:33 GMT+01:00

The controversial whistleblower site published the cable late on Sunday, listing potential targets that experts told British daily The Times were a “gift for terrorist organisations.”

The list of “critical infrastructure and key resources located abroad” detailed hundreds of pipelines, important data cables, and businesses belonging to international industrial and pharmaceutical giants. If destroyed, these sites could damage US interests, the diplomatic communique said.

In Germany such sites included the BASF headquarters in Ludwigshafen, which was described as the “world's largest integrated chemical complex,” and Hamburg's port.

Other crucial sites include the northwestern coastal city of Norden and the North Sea island of Sylt, where two important underwater data and communication cables connecting North America and Europe reach land.

The list was the result of a February 2009 order from Washington for officials to compile a list of international assets critical for the United States.

The plants of industrial giant Siemens were also listed for “essentially irreplaceable production of key chemicals” and the production of hydroelectric dam turbines and generators.

Other companies included Dräger Safety in the northern German city of Lübeck, “critical to gas detection capability,” and Junghans Fienwerktechnik in the southern city of Schramberg, “critical to the production of mortars.”

A number of German pharmaceutical companies that produce critical vaccines, medications and medical tests, including insulin and a small pox vaccine, were also included on the list.

Britain and the US condemned Wikileaks’ decision to publish the list among a bundle of some 250,000 secret diplomatic documents obtained by the site.

“There are strong and valid reasons information is classified, including critical infrastructure and key resources that are vital to the national and economic security of any country,” US Assistant Secretary of State Philip Crowley told The Times.

Julian Assange may be directing his efforts at the United States but he is placing the interests of many countries and regions at risk. This is irresponsible.”

But Wikileaks spokesperson Kristinn Hrafnsson told daily The Financial Times that the release proves the US government uses embassy officials for intelligence gathering, despite claims to the contrary.

“In terms of security issues, while this cable details the strategic importance of assets across the world, it does not give any information as to their exact locations, security measures, vulnerabilities or any similar factors, though it does reveal the US asked its diplomats to report back on these matters,” she told the paper.

The Local/ka

Related links:

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

13:10 December 6, 2010 by freechoice
now which terrorists would have time to dig through the 250,000 documents?

thanks alot now everybody knows!
13:50 December 6, 2010 by ron1amr
The truth is wikileaks only expose things that Governments cover up. Most things a lot of people already know. Governments treat people like mushrooms keep us under cover and feed us nothing but manure. Its interesting how high up politicians contrive up wordings to say wikileaks are terrorists and threaten security. What security? Their term in office because they are being exposed for all the actions they turned a blind eye to? The next thing wikileaks want to go after are banks. Thats a good thing as you can be sure they don't have a clean record. But so what whatever wikileaks do will it change anything? I don't think so.

People know a lot more than Governments give them credit for. Internet filtering is another system Governments want to undertake to keep public in the dark.
13:58 December 6, 2010 by DOZ
To suggest that the Terror Community had no idea of these potential targets prior to the Wikileaks, is just another suggestion that the Arab and Muslim Community is un-educated and requires the West for critical intelligance. One of the most important quests of these Communities, is the restoration of their intellectual strength that existed up until the West invaded their communities for the Black Gold. Iran's Nuclear endevours is just a step in this process, and as usual the West is trying their best to stop it. Iran's biggest beef, that brought down the Shaw, and exists in the Shiekdom Countries, is that they used the Oil $$$ to buy cheap Western Technology, instead of developing their own, and allowed their Universities to fall into decay and discrace, and their people into Welfare Recipients. Countries like Germany, India, China and Japan should respect this, considering that fostering their own Intellectual Community has always been a #1 priority.
14:40 December 6, 2010 by SRaab
DOZ,

Irans biggest beef, that brought down the Shaw, and exists in the Shiekdom Countries, is that they used the Oil $$$ to buy cheap Western Technology, instead of developing their own.

Can you name 1 Technical thing these Shiekdom countries developed?

Please enlighten me.
17:08 December 6, 2010 by wenddiver
Geez, Doz,

Apparently, the Universitys have completely collapsed if that's what they are teaching.

Ancient Babalon, ancient Persia, ancient Eygypt were all fantastically advanced. Last I looked they stayed pretty advanced during their own interaction with the Ancient West. The area didn't start to be backwards until Islam started to take over. Sure they had a few good advances during this time, but realistically they have been falling behind ever since. If the West really was trying to control the whole world they would spread Islam and Communism throughout the third world, so they continued to fall behind.

No government ever sent as many students to Western Universities as the Shahs, Iran to this day uses weaponry he purchased. Iran has fallen behind in everything except getting an atomic bomb in recent years.
18:53 December 6, 2010 by Beachrider
I can understand Libertarians believing that they should have access to all information. I don't agree with them, but I understand them.

What about individual privacy (often key in discussions here) gets lost in this? If a person 'squeals' about something, does that 'squealer' have a right to privacy? That privacy has been completely bypassed in this release.

More importantly, disclosing infrastructure information that is only-useful in defending or attaching public safety is clearly a public security issue.

It is clear that the PFC that disclosed this info committed Treason against the USA.
19:33 December 6, 2010 by cotongrll
Maybe I'm missing something... the WIKILEAKS spokes person said locations weren't given. Call me crazy, but, um... wouldn't the port of Hamburg be, like, on the Elbe in, say, Hamburg?
09:18 December 7, 2010 by catjones
How come the photo wasn't blurred?

Apparently a chemical complex isn't as sensitive as my neighbor's lace curtains.
11:50 December 9, 2010 by LancashireLad
I'm really in two minds about Wikileaks.

This latest revelation does nothing towards uncovering illicit or illegal governmental action.

Of course governments have secrets - but it isn't always in the public's interest for these secrets to be exposed - that's generally why they are secrets....

Like the cables uncovering what the US thinks of the rest of the world's leaders, these revelations don't bring anything positive to the world.
01:52 December 14, 2010 by PeterTime
What assange told the world is what US really worries about if any other country may overcome them to be No. One.
Today's headlines
German jobless rate rises in July
Photo: DPA

German jobless rate rises in July

Unemployment in Germany rose in July to 6.6 percent, the Federal Employment Agency said on Thursday, blaming the increase on "seasonal reasons". READ  

Your lottery numbers are 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13
The winning numbers in Wednesday night's lotto. Photo: DPA/Lotto

Your lottery numbers are 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13

Three lucky Germans will take home a six-figure prize after an extremely rare lottery draw. The lucky numbers on Wednesday night were 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 and 37. READ  

Germany denies 'land for gas' deal with Putin
Merkel with Poroshenko and Putin in June. Photo: DPA

Germany denies 'land for gas' deal with Putin

UPDATE: Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russian President Vladimir Putin have been working on a secret peace plan for Ukraine, The Independent newspaper reported on Thursday. The report was later denied by the German government. READ  

Space ship brings special cargo for astronaut
A cargo compartment on the ATV. Photo: ESA

Space ship brings special cargo for astronaut

The last European space freighter blasted off to the International Space Station (ISS) on Wednesday, carrying a special treat for the station’s German astronaut. The launch of the German-built supply ship marks the end of an era. READ  

World Cup victory makes Germans thirsty
Beer sales abroad and during the World Cup were behind the rise. Photo: DPA

World Cup victory makes Germans thirsty

Germany’s World Cup victory was also good news for the country’s brewers who saw a welcome reversal in the long-term trend of draining beer sales. READ  

Foreigners less likely to get jobs than Germans
A woman walks past a German job centre in Saxony. Photo: DPA

Foreigners less likely to get jobs than Germans

Foreigners from outside the EU suffer from a much lower employment rate in Germany than native citizens and EU immigrants, a study confirmed on Wednesday. READ  

German squad leaves out one-legged long jumper
Markus Rehm. Photo: DPA

German squad leaves out one-legged long jumper

German athletics officials said on Wednesday they would not nominate the country's long jump champion Markus Rehm for the European championships because of fears his prosthetic leg gives him an unfair advantage. READ  

Second man arrested after synagogue attack
The synagogue on Tuesday after the attack. Photo: DPA

Second man arrested after synagogue attack

Police arrested a second suspect on Wednesday in connection with an attempted arson attack in which Molotov cocktails were thrown at a synagogue in western Germany. Another man who said he was Palestinian has denied involvement. READ  

German women fall short of equality
Still a man's world: women in Germany find it hard to rise as high as Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen. Photo: DPA

German women fall short of equality

Women in Germany are still underrepresented in leadership jobs and among professors, a new government report said on Wednesday. They are also paid less and remain unlikely to study science, technology, engineering or mathematics. READ  

The Local List
Five reasons to visit (and to avoid) Oktoberfest
Photo: DPA

Five reasons to visit (and to avoid) Oktoberfest

With just over 50 days to go until Munich's Oktoberfest starts, it is time to book your train/plane/horse to the world’s biggest beer festival. Or is it? The Local List looks at five reasons you should be making that trip, and five why you'd better steer clear. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Five reasons to visit Oktoberfest (and five not to)
Photo: DPA
Analysis & Opinion
Have Your Say: Should Germany legalize cannabis?
Photo: DPA
Education
Germany's students fail to graduate in time
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Hamburg harbour lit up in blue
Business & Money
JobTalk: 'Application process is failing'
Photo: Bundesarchiv/Bild 183-S45825
Culture
Germany puts 700,000 WWI docs online
Photo: DPA
Society
This man wants to give all of us €12,000 a year
Photo: DPA
Education
Top university switches master's courses to English
instagram.com/gotzemario
Gallery
Germany's World Cup stars share their holiday photos
Travel
Plans unveiled for bike trail along former Iron Curtain
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The Local List: 12 best words in German
Photo: DPA
Gallery
German Bucket List: How many of these can you tick off?
Photo: Europeana.de 1914 - 1918
Gallery
A German soldier's life behind WWI lines
Education
Raising the bar for law & business in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Sponsored Article
Bilingual school turning education on its head
Sponsored Article
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,244
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd