Gawker, initially excited by a new act of politically-motivated crime, soon discovers this new “hacktivism” from Anonymous has an ugly set of extra victims:
Earlier today, Anonymous announced what sounded like an awesome caper: The group had compromised the email of a law firm that represented Staff Sergeant Frank Wuterich, the Marine squad leader who got a slap on the wrist for his role in the Haditha massacre. Trouble is, the hack had a lot of collateral victims, including people that Anonymous might normally be aligned with. Like a lawyer for Guantanamo detainees.
So among partner Haytham Faraj’s emails are witness statements from the victims—whose names have not been reported in the context of the sexual assault—recounting how one awoke from a drunken stupor … [DS: I’m cutting Gawker’s graphic excerpted descriptions of the rape] … It’s hard to see how the public release of that information accords with Anonymous’ self-described “ongoing effort to expose the corruption of the court systems and the brutality of US imperialism.”
Gawker and a media in thrall to the fantasy of revolutionary computer hackers liberating the people’s information cannot summon an ounce of outrage for these women being violated again through the exposure of this information. Gawker editor John Cook is hungry, focused on what other sweet pieces of illicit information he might find, his post concludes:
There’s a wealth of data in the release that absolutely should become public, and I will eagerly pore over it. But there are unintended consequences to the approach.
“There are unintended consequences”? That’s all you’ve got as Anonymous is again revealed as malicious bullies victimizing the weak and the helpless?
This is pretty sick stuff for both the computer criminals who engage in it and the editors at Gawker who derive psychological satisfaction through fueling it with their fawning coverage.
Related: Rob Taylor wrote about Anonymous for PJM in October.
David Swindle is the associate editor of PJ Media and writes a post each day on news and politics at PJ Tatler and culture and entertainment at PJ Lifestyle. He can be contacted with feedback and story tips at DaveSwindlePJM[@]gmail.com and on Twitter @DaveSwindle. He enforces commenting guidelines on his posts — rude, off topic and ad hominem comments will be deleted.