Wikileaks' crown jewels—the 250,000 classified diplomatic cables that it is releasing in a slow drip, with just under 2,000 out so far—have been leaked to a Norwegian newspaper.
The Norwegian daily Aftenposten says it has the full database, despite Wikileaks' efforts to keep access to the cables limited to the Guardian, Der Spiegel, and El Pais, all of which signed strict nondisclosure agreements and have been coordinating their reporting on the cache. It's not the first time the cables have been shared outside the inner circle—the Guardian secretly handed the database over to the New York Times prior to publication.
While the Times has generally kept pace with the other legit cable recipients and hasn't dumped them en masse, it's unclear whether Aftenposten will be as discreet: "We are free to do whatever we want with these documents," the paper's editor said, according to a Google translation of this story from a Norwegian paper.
Aftenposten says the leak occurred "without the consent of Wikileaks director Julian Assange." But it happens to have come at a time when Assange's coalition of media partners is fraying—just yesterday, he had a hissyfit about the Guardian's coverage of rape charges pending against Assange in Sweden. So maybe he's throwing copies around just to rob the Guardian of its ongoing exclusive.
[Photo via AP]