Wikileaks Bahamas secret cables cover 2004-2010
Nearly all of the secret United States State Department cables on The Bahamas in the possession of online whistleblower Wikileaks date from the period 2004 to 2010, according to data compiled by the German news magazine Der Spiegel.
Wikileaks turned over the more than 250,000 cables to Der Spiegel, the Spanish paper El Pais, the French paper Le Monde and the British paperThe Guardian. The Guardianshared the documents with the New York Times.
There are 394 cables on The Bahamas. Since Wikileaks and the media companies began releasing the documents on November 28, only four cables on The Bahamas have been published byThe Guardian. Two were on relations between The Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands(TCI) and two were on the Anna Nicole/Shane Gibson scandal.
According to Der Spiegel’s data, 18 cables were from 2010; 137 cables from 2009; 58 cables from 2008; 51 cables from 2007; 64 cables from 2006; 25 cables from 2005; and 28 cables from 2004. The remaining 13 cables were not accounted for on The Bahamas chart.
The documents have been categorized by the U.S. government based on the sensitivity of the information included. The 394 cables were categorized as follows: One was described as Secret No Foreigners; 14 as Secret; one as Confidential No Foreigners; 170 as Confidential; 54 as Unclassified for Official Use Only; and 154 as Unclassified.
Secret documents are most sensitive within this category range. Unclassified documents are least sensitive.
Both cables on the Anna Nicole/Shane Gibson scandal were categorized as Confidential.
Wikileaks has pledged to release the documents over the next few months.
“The subject matter of these cables is of such importance, and the geographical spread so broad, that to do otherwise would not do this material justice,”said Wikileaks.
“We owe it to the people who entrusted us with the documents to ensure that there is time for them to be written about, commented on and discussed widely in public, something that is impossible if hundreds of thousands of documents are released at once.”
The U.S. Embassy in Nassau has spoken to the Bahamian government about the issue. It is unclear if it the U.S. has shared with the Bahamian government the documents Wikileaks has in its possession.