Friday, July 30, 2010

The WikiLeaks Papers And Lady Gaga: The Connection
Gil Kaufman in Music

You can blame a lot of things on Lady Gaga. From the eruption of "little monsters" thinking they can pull off some of her signature looks, to the vapidization of modern girl pop (we think) and, now, the leak of 90,000 Afghanistan war documents on WikiLeaks.

By now you've surely heard about how the whistleblower site posted tens of thousands of documents about the war on Sunday (July 25), much to the Obama administration's chagrin. But the part of the story you might have missed was how Gaga played a crucial part in the process. No, it wasn't tied to that awesome video of enlisted men dancing to "Telephone."

As it turns out, the soldier accused of leaking the documents to WikiLeaks, disillusioned Pvt. Bradley Manning, would carry in a CD-RW labeled "Lady Gaga" and then log onto classified military networks when preparing to snatch the intel. According to ABC News, while he was downloading secret information he pretended to sing along to "Telephone" while actually erasing the music on the disc and overwriting it with intelligence information.

The combined documents amount to what is being called the greatest leak of government information in 40 years. Which go us wondering: What if this technology had been available in a previous generation? Which pop artist of the moment's music might they have used to mask their nefarious activity?

Would the scoundrels behind the leaking of the Pentagon Papers — which in 1968 blew the lid off the Johnson administrations lies to the public and Congress about the Vietnam war — have carried in a disc by Country Joe and the Fish (of "I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-To-Die-Rag" fame)?

What about good old Deep Throat, who was behind the leaking of the Watergate Tapes in 1973 that implicated President Nixon in illegal activities in the White House? If he hadn't had Woodward and Bernstein, would he have dubbed Nixon's insane ramblings onto a reel-to-reel tape labeled "Black Oak Arkansas, 'Jim Dandy'"?

Only history will determine if Lady Gaga's name will forever be tied to the monumental WikiLeak or if it will quickly fade and become a minor footnote on her Wiki page. Frankly, we wish Manning had picked an artists with longer range prospects, like Justin Bieber or Ke$ha.

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