By Gautham Nagesh - 09/10/10 01:40 PM EDT
The online whistleblower site WikiLeaks is preparing to release a massive trove of classified U.S. military field reports on the war in Iraq similar to its release on the Afghanistan war earlier this summer, according to a report from Newsweek.
The editor of a London-based journalism nonprofit said his organization is working with WikiLeaks as well as print and television media companies in several countries to prepare stories and reports based on the documents. WikiLeaks worked with The New York Times, Der Spiegel and The Guardian in advance of its release of the Afghanistan documents.
Iain Overton, editor of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, told Newsweek the documents constitute the largest leak of military intelligence on record. He said the collection of Iraq war documents is massive, likely even larger than the 92,000 field reports on Afghanistan. Overton said all the media organizations plan to release their stories on the same day, but declined to name any of the other media outlets or the date of publication.
Overton said his organization is taking seriously U.S. complaints that the Afghanistan leaks have put lives in jeopardy, which is why they are reviewing all reports first for sensitive information rather than posting the raw material. He said WikiLeaks's media partners have agreed to make financial contributions to WikiLeaks to "help meet productions costs."
In addition to the controversy over the leaked documents from Afghanistan, Swedish authorities are investigating rape and molestation allegations against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who has denounced the investigation as a witch-hunt. Assange recently agreed to move some of the site's servers to Sweden and to write a column for a newspaper there in order to protect WikiLeaks under the country's strict journalism shield laws.