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Gli “embassy cables” o “diplomatic cables” sono rapporti ufficiali scritti da funzionari e ambasciatori facenti capo al dipartimento di Stato americano, aventi come oggetto le interazioni tra funzionari americani o tra questi e ambasciatori o funzionari di governi stranieri.

Ogni rapporto contiene un riassunto iniziale e poi i dettagli su determinati eventi o incontri. Fanno il giro delle agenzie governative, delle ambasciate e dei ministeri, ciascun documento secondo il suo livello di riservatezza, e servono a informare l’apparato diplomatico americano a Washington e in giro per il mondo sull’evoluzione degli scenari politici globali. Ogni rapporto è contrassegnato da una sigla che indica il grado di riservatezza. Sul sito di Wikileaks è possibile scorrere i file secondo il loro grado di riservatezza, il loro paese d’origine, il loro argomento, eccetera. 15 mila sono “segreti”, 101 mila “confidenziali” e 133 mila “non riservati”. Il paese più trattato – con oltre 15 mila documenti – è l’Iraq. Un altro database – ordinato per persone e paesi – è disponibile sul sito del Guardian.

fonte: Il Post

In the mid-1860s, the first durable transatlantic submarine telegraph cable was completed, and by the end of the decade, the portmanteau (i.e. blended word) cablegram had been born, combining the nouns cable and telegram. The Oxford English Dictionary's first citation, from 1868, specifically notes its novelty: "The new word cablegram is used by a New York contemporary to characterise a telegraphic dispatch." The Corpus of Historical American English pushes the date back a couple of years to 1866, in Jane G. Austin's novel Outpost: "'Hello, a cablegram!' exclaimed the young inventor. 'It must be from Mr. Illingway, in Africa."

In any case, whether by clipping from cablegram or by metaphorical extension from cable, the noun cable with the meaning of a message sent by submarine telegraph cables was in place by 1883, the date of its first OED citation.

When did cablegram/cable get restricted semantically to diplomatic realm? It's hard to say, since the word cable has the non-telegraphy meanings that get in the way of Internet searches. It seems to have begun sometime around the World War II years. A search of the Google News Archive shows that mentions of personal cablegrams tend to be from prior to the 1920s. The phrase business cablegram(s) gets about a dozen hits between 1900 and in 1940, and none thereafter. Diplomatic cablegram gets its start in the 1930s and notches several hits per decade from the 1950s to the 1980s, before disappearing by the end of the 90s. Diplomatic cable(s) shows up throughout the 20th century, but really starts to pick up in the 1940s, and continues to be used steadily up to the present.

Source: Visual Thesaurus

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