Washington is also doing damage control in preparation for the release of internal documents that may contain reports of compromising “conversations with political dissidents and friendly politicians… that could result in the expulsion of U.S. diplomats from foreign postings” (“Ottawa told to brace for WikiLeaks release,” CTV News, 25 November 2010) . Ottawa is just one of several governments to which Washington has issued warnings concerning the possible fallout from the leaks.
What could lead to the expulsion of U.S. diplomats from foreign postings? Speculation suggests that within the 2.8 million secret papers to be released are allegations of corruption against foreign governments and leaders. Politicians from Russia, Afghanistan, and the former Soviet republics are said to be in the spotlight (“WikiLeaks to publish diplomatic papers on global corruption: report,” International Business Times, 25 November 2010). The private (and sometimes uncomplimentary) opinions of U.S. diplomats reporting to Washington on foreign government policies and politicians may also be revealed.