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Break of confidence

Break of confidence

Marcelo Rech

The week was marked by the filtration of more than 250,000 diplomatic messages produced by North American officials in whole world.

In spite of the discussion regarding the ethical behavior of the organization that leaked the messages and everything that was already said in respect, it is a lesson: there was break of confidence regarding the United States.

To reunite information about the country where the diplomats serve is inherent to the function, it is in the nature of the foreign representation. There is nothing wrong in that.

Not everything that now is taxed of espionage is, in fact, espionage.

Almost all of the information that became public was gathered in open events, in lunches, dinners and typical ceremonies of the diplomatic way.

In these events, cards, impressions and opinions are exchanged.

The more we know about the States and about the ones who are responsible for them, the better the relationship can be.

The information of quality allows that policies are sewed, crises are avoided and conflicts are forged.

The problem is in the form as we refer to the context of these relations, to the terms that we use to the ones who are our sources, deliberately or inadvertently, and what we do with this information.

While allowing that 250 diplomatic telegrams could be leaked, the United States stripped not only its relations, but also how people see each other, treat each other and consider each other.

There is no harm if a determined president has an unflattering opinion about other leaders. It is of the political-human nature.

Now, when a third one informs his government what “A” thinks of “B”, besides losing the confidence of both, puts them in a tremendous problem.

An example: in one of the filtered messages, the former North American ambassador Clifford Sobel weaves comments about the problems provoked by president Hugo Chávez according to the North American optics.

His interlocutor, General Jorge Armando Félix, Minister-Chief of the Office of Institutional Security of the Presidency of the Republic, signals to agree with the head.

They have lunch. The gesture is natural.

But, in a diplomatic telegram, it gains other outlines.

Ambassador Sobel doesn´t report to the Department of State that the General, in a private meeting, exposed data and information that justify the Brazilian preoccupation with the way Chávez behaves.

What effectively gains importance isn´t what he didn´t say, but what the diplomat supposes to have understood.

It is complicated to explain it.

Since the documents began to be replicated in the world-wide press, more and more people of different levels of the government, of the Armed Forces and of the Congress, have been losing sleep.

They feel betrayed.

They said, in confidence, many things regarding colleagues, chiefs, subordinates, allies, lenders and borrowers.

It is unacceptable that the United States can´t ensure confidentiality to the ones that straightly or indirectly help them understanding the movements of the world, even with the obvious passing before their eyes without them realizing it.

The break of confidence will prevent the North American diplomacy from collecting information of quality before the web of lies planted every day.

The feeling of those who were abandoned to their fate could not be bitterer.

Marcelo Rech is a journalist, editor of the InfoRel and specialist in Strategies & Policies of Defense and Terrorism & Counter-insurgency. E-mail:

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