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Wednesday, 15 December 2010
No More WikiLeaks for US Air Force Staff
The US air force has blocked employees from accessing the websites of the Guardian, the New York Times and other news organisations carrying the WikiLeaks US embassy cables.
At least 25 sites that have posted WikiLeaks files had been barred, said Major Toni Tones of the US air force's space command in Colorado. Tones said the action was taken in accordance with a policy that "routinely blocks air force network access to websites hosting inappropriate materials".
Staff who attempt to access the blocked sites instead see an on-screen message saying: "Access denied. Internet usage is logged and monitored."
While the US defence department has issued orders against visiting WikiLeaks or downloading classified documents from the site, it has not ordered a blanket ban on visiting news organisations reporting on the contents of the classified cables. The army, navy and marines have not sought to block access to any websites.
The air force's move follows instructions by the government that staff should not access the cables, with the Library of Congress instituting a bar on accessing WikiLeaks's website.
One member of the US armed forces could be celebrated for his part in the WikiLeaks drama. Berkeley city council is considering a resolution in support Bradley Manning, the army private accused of releasing the documents.