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Pilkington reports: "Bradley Manning has pleaded guilty to having been the source of the massive WikiLeaks dump of US state secrets, though he has denied the most serious charge against him that he "aided the enemy.'"

Manning also pleaded not guilty to 12 counts which relate to the major offences. (photo: Patrick Semansky/AP)
Manning also pleaded not guilty to 12 counts which relate to the major offences. (photo: Patrick Semansky/AP)



Bradley Manning Pleads Guilty

By Ed Pilkington, Guardian UK

28 February 13

 

radley Manning has pleaded guilty to having been the source of the massive WikiLeaks dump of US state secrets, though he has denied the most serious charge against him that he "aided the enemy" that could see him languishing in military prison for the rest of his life.

Through his lawyer, David Coombs, the soldier pleaded guilty to 10 lesser charges that included possessing and willfully communicating to an unauthorised person all the main elements of the WikiLeaks disclosure. That covered the so-called "collateral murder" video of an Apache helicopter attack in Iraq; some US diplomatic cables including one of the early WikiLeaks publications the Reykjavik cable; portions of the Iraq and Afghanistan warlogs, some of the files on detainees in Guantanamo; and two intelligence memos.

These lesser charges each carry a two-year maximum sentence, committing Manning to a possible upper limit of 20 years in prison.

Manning also pleaded not guilty to 12 counts which relate to the major offences of which he is accused by the US government. Specifically, he pleaded not guilty to "aiding the enemy" - the idea that he knowingly gave help to al-Qaida and in a separate count that by causing secret intelligence to be published on the internet he knowingly made it accessible to the enemy.

He also denied that at the time he made the transmission of information to WikiLeaks he had "reason to believe such information could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation".

With Manning having pleaded not guilty to these overarching charges, the prosecution is now almost certain to press ahead to a full court-martial which is currently set for 3 June. The judge has indicated that the trial could run for 12 weeks, although Manning's guilty plea to the lesser charges may short-circuit the process as the government will no longer have to prove that he acquired and communicated the trove of classified material to WikiLeaks.

Manning confirmed that he wishes the trial to be conducted by the judge, Colonel Denise Lind, presiding in the case sitting alone. There will be no military equivalent of a jury.

Lind made clear that she will reserve her judgment on whether or not to accept Manning's guilty pleas until a later date. She has no power to influence the charges other than to ensure that they are consistent with the law - which she has already done.

She does, however, have the responsibility to ensure that Manning has made his plea in full knowledge of what it means for his future, and voluntarily with no coercion.

They will now spend the rest of the day in deliberations designed to meet that responsibility. Lind has said that Manning will be allowed to read out a statement, believed to run to 35 pages, that explains his decisions and may reveal his thinking about what he did and why he did it in transmitting such a huge mountain of classified material to WikiLeaks.

 

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+167 # fredboy 2013-02-28 12:15
He shared the truth, American's gravest sin.

Now I am waiting for someone to speak up and tell us which American Heroes stole all the cash the U.S. airlifted to Bagdad at the start of the invasion. Notice how quiet that crime as been, with no criminal investigation at all?
 
 
+70 # Eldon J. Bloedorn 2013-02-28 13:18
I remember reading about the amount of the stolen cash although I do not recall the actual amount. It was enormous. I'm sure bush and Cheney "had nothing to do with the theft."
 
 
+73 # wantrealdemocracy 2013-02-28 14:51
Cheney told us about trillions of dollars going missing in the Pentagon the day before 9/11. It was wiped out of the news by that staged event. I just read that Iran has charged their banksters with the crime of embezzling 2.6 billion dollars---chump change when compared with what our banksters did. Iran put them on trial and four have been sentenced to death, two got life sentences and others got 25 years in the bucket. How come our scummy banking crooks did not spend a day in jail but got big bonuses that continue to this day? Could our government be corrupt?
 
 
+48 # aaheart 2013-02-28 16:08
That was Rumsfeld who reported $2.3 trillion missing, Cheney was busy with last minute plans for the next day.

Could our government be corrupt? They don't report their all revenues, so we think "our" government needs our taxes to make a go of it. The corporate government is one of the biggest investors in the stock market and make money whether the market is going up or down. Nearly 500 investment fund managers, knowing what lies ahead, can place bets either way.

Insider trading information makes the corporate government the biggest investor in the stock market...and the biggest winner in any economic situation. In fact, they rake in about 8 times the federal budget every year. That's why they don't prosecute the banking criminals.
 
 
+48 # bmiluski 2013-02-28 13:33
"Notice how quiet that crime as been, with no criminal investigation at all?"

Because no one was caught. And the documentation was just better hidden and/or destroyed.
 
 
+40 # WestWinds 2013-02-28 16:22
Now we know why they are so up-in-arms over Wikileaks; don't want anyone blowing the cover off all the hanky-panky going on with taxpayer dollars.
 
 
+39 # RnR 2013-02-28 14:24
Absolute, total and unequivocal "BINGO"!!
 
 
+31 # WestWinds 2013-02-28 16:19
The Bush crime family purchased a huge cattle ranch in Paraguay that sits on top of possibly the larges subterranean supply of fresh drinking water on the planet. Gee, I wonder where that money came from? And it was also rumored that Cheney built a huge bunker for himself; big enough to house the Congress, complete with movie theater and Cordon Bleu kitchen. Wonder where THAT money came from.
 
 
+56 # Lowflyin Lolana 2013-02-28 12:17
Something really bizarre happened a little while back. A Twitter feed purporting to be that of Judge Lind appeared with tweets as follows:


For all of you who don't know me I'm the Judge in Bradley Manning's trial./I have some things to say to the American people before the Government tries to silence me./All of you need to know the truth. Mr. #Manning is innocent./I'm being pressured by the Government and Military to prosecute an innocent young man./The Government and Military want to use Mr. #Manning as an example for future whistle-blowers ,don't report our crimes./Mr. #Manning is a very brave young man and he did the right thing./Every soldier has a moral duty to report crimes even if those crimes are committed by their own Government or Military./The American people do need to stand with Mr. #Manning and let the Government and Military know their crimes won't be tolerated./This will be the end of my career as a Judge but the truth has to come out.
-------And so forth. The tweets started January 19th and the last two were sent on January 22nd. The Twitter account stayed active until, I believe, the 23rd. Then it disappeared.
My assumption is that this was a hoax of some sort. It was interesting to me that these tweets stayed online as long as they did, and did not immediately come down.
What is on trial in this case is not just Brad Manning. It is journalism and the American people's right to journalism that tells them how their tax dollars are being spent.
 
 
+15 # Lowflyin Lolana 2013-02-28 13:40
Wow, I guess only one other person here besides me thinks it's interesting those tweets stayed online for several days. Maybe I'm just retarded.
 
 
+15 # LizR 2013-02-28 15:38
I thought it was very interesting. And you got a lot of "thumbs-ups" so clearly some other people do so, too. Mind you, I only just read your comment...we are a bit "retarded" in New Zealand relative to things published during the day in America!

I agree with your original comments, anyway.
 
 
+20 # Rain17 2013-02-28 16:37
It had to be a hoax. No judge would post publicly on Twitter or any other social networking site about current cases he/she is hearing. To do so would create a mistrial and be a violation of judicial ethics.
 
 
+17 # WestWinds 2013-02-28 17:17
I sincerely doubt these Tweets were generated by Judge Lind; if so, she would be pulled from the case and disbarment proceedings would most likely follow. There are rules about ex parte communication.
 
 
+88 # neohip 2013-02-28 12:21
I am not surprised that a 1000 days in prison has taken its toll on this American hero. Unfortunate that Americans exhibit such a low sense of morality. What a video showing Blackhawk mercenaries on behest of the American people murdering innocent civilians and hanging around to murder those foolish enough to come out and offer aid, so?? I profoundly grieve for the loss of our humanity.
 
 
+7 # bmiluski 2013-02-28 13:35
My dear, humanity has not changed since the beginning. So there is no loss. Just the same old same old.
 
 
+17 # WestWinds 2013-02-28 17:29
#neoship:
The vast majority of people these days are zombies breast fed on corporate bunk. They are blank computers that have been programmed with the worst thinking human beings have to offer and they don't have enough common sense to realize it's WRONG or enough integrity to stand up to it and just say, "NO!"
 
 
+22 # aaheart 2013-02-28 18:42
Yes, but they were taught to be that way by parents, teachers, pastors and priests, military, movies, music, news, families and friends. Surviving and coming through it requires almost superhuman courage and and commitment to truth. Growing up amidst illusion is a major challenge. Look back at all the lies you had to step through and imagine how much must still lie ahead of you. Be strong and direct your anger at learning and setting the truth before the illusion.
 
 
+12 # Kathymoi 2013-02-28 18:23
Quoting neohip:
I am not surprised that a 1000 days in prison has taken its toll on this American hero. Unfortunate that Americans exhibit such a low sense of morality. What a video showing Blackhawk mercenaries on behest of the American people murdering innocent civilians and hanging around to murder those foolish enough to come out and offer aid, so?? I profoundly grieve for the loss of our humanity.

Each civilian's jail sentence limits my freedom for I am a part of all mankind.
 
 
+100 # BobbyLip 2013-02-28 12:25
History will vindicate Bradley Manning for his truthfulness and courage. His torturers should burn in hell.
 
 
+59 # goodsensecynic 2013-02-28 12:52
A tragic day for America, and for the moral credibility of the United States in the world.
 
 
+109 # Alternative 2013-02-28 12:52
I hope Obama pardons him or is that only reserved for wealthy crooks! I also think that they should let him out of jail for all of the cruelty he has already endured? Personally I think he deserves a medal for what he did!
 
 
-85 # bmiluski 2013-02-28 13:36
And what cruelty would that be. You actually have first hand knowledge and proof of what he has suffered?
 
 
-33 # aaheart 2013-02-28 13:54
And you know who "he" is? From your first hand knowledge? You know something about his life since he was arrested?
 
 
+26 # MidwestDick 2013-02-28 15:21
His lawyers have compiled a dossier of cruel punishment here:
http://www.armycourtmartialdefense.info/2012/07/unlawful-pretrial-punishment-motion.html
I believe the judge has already passed judgment on this material and ordered that Pvt Manning be spared further cruel punishment.
 
 
+12 # MidwestDick 2013-02-28 15:24
The troll that gave this a thumbs down should get back to NewsMax and leave us alone.
 
 
+12 # WestWinds 2013-02-28 17:38
No, but people who visited him when he was at Quantico saw and heard directly from him what they were doing. You don't think they moved him to a maximum security prison where no one could get to him because they have nothing to hide do you? Listen, you've got to keep up if you are going to have a legitimate opinion to opine.
 
 
+26 # WestWinds 2013-02-28 17:35
If I'm not mistaken, Obama is the shaker and mover behind this whole attack on Sgt. Manning... and Julian Assange...and others.
And I agree with you. Sgt Manning should be released for time and torture served and get the People's Medal For Heroism above and beyond the call of duty. Now, here is a human being with his conscience fully in tact and what does this society do? Persecutes and betrays him! Reminds me of a carpenter a long time ago they did the same type of stuff to. We're a sick lot.
 
 
+14 # fdawei 2013-02-28 23:20
Correct. Bradley deserves a medal for exposing the hypocrisy of the United States, The Pentagon, The DoJ, as well as the Commander-in-Ch ief. But no! They award medals to those bozos sitting in a bunker, thousands of miles away from the war zone, playing with joysticks shooting and killing unarmed adults and children, which is cruelly called "unfortunate collateral damage."
 
 
+89 # angelfish 2013-02-28 12:58
Release this man! His incarceration has been cruel and inhuman and his time served is punishment enough! We are becoming what we have ALWAYS fought AGAINST! God forgive us and help us to be better.
 
 
+92 # aaheart 2013-02-28 13:03
State secrets have become the bane of freedom because the government as our agent has become someone else's agent without our assent. We are principals who have lost control of our agents by letting them acquire too much power and power corrupts. Since their new employers have managed to acquire control of the money, media, and military they control elections and choose candidates for our selection and control elections through the hidden algorithms in the electronic voting machines. Sometimes there are more votes than there are voters.

Thus, Daniel Ellsbergs and Bradley Mannings provide a necessary service to We the People by revealing the hidden machinations that keep the government running as though it were our government, a government of the people, by the people and for the people.

Ellsberg's release of the Pentagon Papers opened our eyes to the lies of a false government of another generation. Bradley Manning might have helped open the eyes of this generation to the hidden rulers in the shadows.
 
 
+30 # Rita Walpole Ague 2013-02-28 13:28
What a truth teller you are, aaheart! Do be careful, dear prophet: perpetual detention (or worse) awaits we, the truth tellers. But, yes, tell truth we must, for the sake of good overcoming evil and the welfare of all and the world/environme nt that is being so destroyed by the greedy villainaires.
 
 
-24 # Rain17 2013-02-28 17:22
There's one major difference between Ellsburg and Manning. Ellsburg released one document and his disclosure was narrowly-focuse d. Instead Manning chose to indiscriminatel y dump thousands of documents beyond the incidents he was concerned about.

At least in the case of Ellsburg you could argue that there you had someone who was exposing corruption. You don't have that with Manning, who seems to have released tons of documents beyond the scope of the incidents he had issues with.

I know this isn't going to be a popular opinion here, but Manning signed nondisclosure forms when he received access to classified information. He knew what the consequences would be for releasing that information.

I agree that Manning probably has issues and that a judge should take those extenuating circumstance into consideration when sentencing him, but that's no excuse for his breaking the law. Manning seems to be a confused young man with issues that the Army didn't notice and find help for him before he started releasing documents.

But I just can't agree with the "progressive position" here that somehow he shouldn't face any penalty.
 
 
+13 # aaheart 2013-02-28 18:31
Depends on which laws are broken, violation of his military oath and responsibility to refuse an illegal order, or a lesser law that requires that he break the highest law of the land such as the Constitution and International Law to which the US is a signatory.
 
 
-15 # Rain17 2013-03-01 00:13
I can sympathize with the fact that Manning may not have agreed with US foreign policy. I can sympathize with the fact that Manning clearly had mental health issues that no one treated or became aware of. The judge should definitely take those factors into consideration when determining his sentence.

But disagreeing with US foreign policy isn't sufficient justification to disobey orders and violate nondisclosure statements. Furthermore I don't think Manning is a "whistle blower" because he released thousands of documents beyond the incidents he was concerned about.

The military couldn't operate if it allowed soldiers to determine which orders to follow or not follow, which is what some of you here seem to be advocating. Manning did violate agreements he signed and should suffer the consequences for doing so.

I don't see how some of you can honestly argue that Manning should suffer no punishment.
 
 
+28 # Vardoz 2013-02-28 13:10
That's the enemy- Someone who tells us what's really going on and the danger that our nation is putting us in and the committing atrocitiesin our names and then telling us that we have enemies out there.
 
 
+43 # Vern Radul 2013-02-28 13:36
So he said he did what he said he did?

It is a crime to NOT expose war crimes.

...........................
HUMINT Collectors MUST:

Report Suspected War Crimes Encountered during the Course of Their Duties

http://www.armystudyguide.com/content/powerpoint/Military_Justice_Presentations/law-of-war-2.shtml
...........................

It IS a crime to engage in war crimes.

I'd be more interested in hearing Obama plead, while shackled to a chair in a Hague courtroom.
 
 
+7 # mdhome 2013-02-28 14:07
Bush/Cheny have a gallon of blood on them for each drop on Obama. Yes that is right, does not mean Obama has done right, but probably just pulling every American home from Iraq/Afghanista n would have resulted in more deaths than a gradual pullout.
 
 
-57 # Gogojoe 2013-02-28 13:38
What are you people talking about?

Military personel with access to classified docs do NOT get to publish them as THEY see fit!
I'm sorry if that doesn't jive with your view of the world, but they actually take an oath saying that they won't.
 
 
+57 # aaheart 2013-02-28 13:50
They actually take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the united States from all enemies, foreign and domestic. What part of that oath do YOU not understand? Obeying an illegal order would make them as guilty as the perpetrators.
 
 
-3 # NOMINAE 2013-02-28 19:48
Quoting aaheart:
They actually take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the united States from all enemies, foreign and domestic. What part of that oath do YOU not understand? Obeying an illegal order would make them as guilty as the perpetrators.


Geez, man, how many years did you spend working with classified materiels ? How many years did you ever spend in the Military ?

Enlisted men take no such oath. "Oaths" don't have diddly to do with Classified Materiel Control. I worked in a Classified Materiel Control Vault for two years. None of this crap has anything to DO with "sworn oaths", and every thing to do with MILITARY LAW.

Military law has NEVER been known for being "fair". THAT'S what you had better know before you volunteer for the military. That you will no longer BE a "civilian", and thus you give up MANY of the your rights as a "citizen" under the Constitution in exchange for being under control of the Uniform Code Of Military Justice. That's just for a job peeling spuds. Classified Material Control is governed by a whole DIFFERENT set of Military laws.

Squawking about anyone's "civil rights" who has joined the Military simply exposes ignorance of the way the Military works.

Whether or not people approve of Manning's actions, pulling that caper WHILE in the Military, and WHILE being governed by Military Laws for handling Classified Material added a WHOLE NEW dimension of danger to what Manning DID do.
 
 
+3 # flippancy 2013-03-03 08:01
Well, I was in the military and also had a top security clearance, but never had access to this type of information. My clearance was for work with missiles and atomic warheads.

Manning was and is a patriot and the people who think otherwise are the ones who spit in the face of patriotism.
 
 
+45 # Jim Rocket 2013-02-28 13:54
Your post contradicts the rules posted above. It is the duty of these people to report war crimes. I believe I read that a mere 300,000 people have the same clearance as Manning. Some secrets! Manning's crime is embarrassing the MI complex.
 
 
+11 # Phlippinout 2013-02-28 14:16
Good little sheep, keep lying for the corrupt machine..rememb er you made an oath with the devil.
 
 
+1 # NOMINAE 2013-02-28 19:54
Quoting Phlippinout:
Good little sheep, keep lying for the corrupt machine..remember you made an oath with the devil.


Sticking one's head in the sand and pretending that the Military is NOT the military is not exactly the model of sterling integrity, courage and clear-eyed thinking.

As a survival strategy, stinking one's head in the sand doesn't even work for the Ostrich, and the Ostrich invented the "strategy".

Calling B.S. ON B.S. is hardly "lying for the corrupt machine". You comment is perfectly valid for some OTHER subject. It barely applies here.
 
 
+8 # kalpal 2013-02-28 15:35
They take an oath to never reveal any illegal acts undertaken and committed by the US government and its employees?
 
 
+24 # LizR 2013-02-28 15:40
I hate toQuoting Gogojoe:
What are you people talking about?

Military personel with access to classified docs do NOT get to publish them as THEY see fit!
I'm sorry if that doesn't jive with your view of the world, but they actually take an oath saying that they won't.


I hate to invoke Godwin's Law, but "I was just following orders" isn't generally taken to be a valid defence of human rights violations. There are higher obligations than obedience to your C-in-C.
 
 
+2 # flippancy 2013-03-03 07:58
Quoting Gogojoe:
What are you people talking about?

Military personel with access to classified docs do NOT get to publish them as THEY see fit!
I'm sorry if that doesn't jive with your view of the world, but they actually take an oath saying that they won't.


Remember the Nuremberg trials? It's your view of the world that makes no sense.

If you don't report illegal activities you are a war criminal according to our rulings in the Nazi trials there.

Or were we just blowing smoke, murdering our former enemies but reserving the right to do the same things they did for ourselves?
 
 
+45 # FLAK88 2013-02-28 13:50
Is this a great country, or what ? So when do we get to try some REAL WAR CRIMINALS, like Cheney & Bush ? ANSWER: NEVER !
 
 
+4 # Jonathan Levy 2013-02-28 14:43
Or Obama
 
 
+4 # kalpal 2013-02-28 15:37
As a right wing stooge you are compelled to insist that all others are as evil as Right Wingers like Bush and Cheney?
 
 
+7 # aaheart 2013-02-28 16:29
It's time to get over the illusion that Democrats are substantially different than republicans. The shadow elitists have used that ploy to trick Americans for too long already. We need to think outside their box and act as Americans outside the ballot box. Do you believe in complying with evil?Stop living and acting by THEIR rules and remember that you are a shareholder in the Corporate Government. Cash out your shares. Find out how in The Fiscal Cliff Is Your Bonanza at http://readersupportednews.org/pm-section/84-84/16173-the-fiscal-cliff-is-your-bonanza
 
 
+38 # roger paul 2013-02-28 14:21
Quote Antemedius: "I'd be more interested in hearing Obama plead, while shackled to a chair in a Hague courtroom."

Before you try Obama....how about those that got us into this mess to start with...Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, et al.
 
 
+13 # Jonathan Levy 2013-02-28 14:45
It is just as big a crime to further those disastrous policies of Bush and Cheney and ignore bringing them to justice. Obama has committed all the same crimes as Bush and Cheney, torture, rendition and illegal war. He has vastly expanded drone attacks. Obama is another pawn in a line of pawns and you are the mindless sheep they enslave without you, the sheep, knowing.
 
 
-1 # jcdav 2013-02-28 20:12
OK-so do we try them all? or just trundle on?
 
 
-1 # flippancy 2013-03-03 08:06
No, he ended torture and rendition. He ended the Iraq war and is getting us out of Afghanistan as quickly as congress will allow.

I have a problem with drone strikes, but the alternatives are far worse. Combat troops not only cause more innocents to die than the drones do and also get killed themselves, and bombers kill many times more civilians than drones do.

Drones aren't the problem, illegal war is.
 
 
+5 # aaheart 2013-02-28 16:20
Try them all. No need to wait until Obama has violated more international and US laws.
 
 
+38 # gaga1996 2013-02-28 14:43
To Bradley Manning -- you are the bravest of men. I am so proud of you. You are a true patriot who cares enough about his country to help steer it on a different course. Bravo Bradley. You tell it like it is!
 
 
+28 # the wizard 2013-02-28 15:23
The Geneva Accords demand that military personnel report war crimes. The United States is a signatory of the Geneva Accords, and as such Manning was acting within the guidelines set forth in a treaty ratified by 2/3 of the Senate as prescribed by the Constitution. There is no statute of limitations on war crimes.
 
 
+9 # NOMINAE 2013-02-28 20:04
Quoting the wizard:
The Geneva Accords demand that military personnel report war crimes. The United States is a signatory of the Geneva Accords, and as such Manning was acting within the guidelines set forth in a treaty ratified by 2/3 of the Senate as prescribed by the Constitution. There is no statute of limitations on war crimes.


Lovely sentiment with which I would love to agree, but you are talking about the U.S. MILITARY here. Let's see how long THAT argument lasts in a Courts Martial.

Vietnam was an almost two decade violation of the Geneva Conventions, and you see how the jails just *teemed* with Military people following that fiasco.

People don't seem to "get" the fact that, like the unconstitutiona l IRS, the Military does pretty much anything that the Military WANTS to do. Period. And it *always* has.

Welcome to world of FACT based reality.
 
 
+1 # Vern Radul 2013-02-28 20:52
..........
There are, no doubt, lessons here for the contemporary reader. The changing character of the native population, brought about through unremarked pressures on porous borders; the creation of an increasingly unwieldy and rigid bureaucracy, whose own survival becomes its overriding goal; the despising of the military and the avoidance of its service by established families, while its offices present unprecedented opportunity for marginal men to whom its ranks had once been closed; the lip service paid to values long dead; the pretense that we still are what we once were; the increasing concentrations of the populace into richer and poorer by way of a corrupt tax system, and the desperation that inevitably follows; the aggrandizement of executive power at the expense of the legislature; ineffectual legislation promulgated with great show; the moral vocation of the man at the top to maintain order at all costs, while growing blind to the cruel dilemmas of ordinary life- these are all themes with which our world is familiar, nor are they the God-given property of any party or political point of view, even though we often act as if they were.
[...]
Though it is easy for us to perceive the wild instability of the Roman Imperium in its final days, it was not easy for the Romans.

http://www.mindfully.org/Reform/Rome-FellMar95.htm
..........

No empire lasts.
 
 
+23 # Torvus 2013-02-28 15:52
Bradley spoke up for the innocent dead who were killed - in the neat, cold, distancing, military phrase - as 'collateral damage': lies; this wasn't collateral damage, these people were deliberately targeted by jovial murderers left unscathed. Doesn't everyone but the mafia reveal murderers if they see the action taking place, even if it is on film? And want to see those murderers brought to justice? So we see that military murderers get off scot free. A good lesson? Why are they free and Bradley getting the whole weight of some weird kind of 'law' thrown at him? He is a bright young man with ethics, and was eager to educate himself further, but not given the chance; he was forced into military situations he could not cope with in the battle arena. Why can't we see what the files say about those held at Guantanamo, anyway? Is there not enough evidence to hold them there? Is this more collateral damage? No military equivalent of a jury for Bradley? A show trial then. Ah, I remember those well. The victims all pleaded guilty, after having been ground to pulp mentally and/or physically, and most were never seen again. The US fought to keep communism at bay, so they said, but Quantico is evil Lubianka Mark 2. Military murdering ('collateral damage') is getting off scot free while all the attention is given to the shock horror of, er, um, the mere exposure of some of its secret wickedness. THAT's the secrecy revelation that really stings, eh?
 
 
-9 # Rain17 2013-02-28 16:31
Not going to be a popular opinion and I suspect that some of you will automatically downrate me for it even though I am being polite and civil. First of all I can appreciate the fact that some of you don't agree with US military and intelligence policy.

However, that doesn't give Manning the right to break the law. I'll say it again: Disagreeing with US foreign/militar y/intelligence/ national security policy isn't a legitimate justification. When military/intell igence community/defen se personnel receive clearances, from the minute they start working, they sign nondisclosure forms stating that they will not release or leak the information. Those are the rules.

Now I could understand the pro-Manning position IF he only released information about those incidents he didn't agree with. But he evidently indiscriminatel y sent Wikileads a significant number of documents. That is illegal and a crime no matter how much you all want to defend what Manning did.

If some of you were angry over what happened to Valerie Plame, to be consistent, you would feel the same way about Manning. The release of that information inevitably compromised sources working for the US government. And much like what happened with Plame, once those governments and/or organizations found out who was passing on information the US, those sources almost certainly met a gruesome fate either through being thrown in jail or being outright killed.

Continued in next post. . . .
 
 
+10 # Vern Radul 2013-02-28 17:21
It is a crime to NOT expose war crimes.

...........................
HUMINT Collectors MUST:

Report Suspected War Crimes Encountered during the Course of Their Duties

http://www.armystudyguide.com/content/powerpoint/Military_Justice_Presentations/law-of-war-2.shtml
 
 
-10 # Rain17 2013-02-28 17:28
I could be wrong, but I don't think Manning was a HUMINT collector. I think that he was an intelligence analyst.

And even if he saw a "war crime" the proper channels would have been to report it to his command and to the Inspector General. I don't think Manning did that.

Again I would be more sympathetic to your position if Manning only released information about the incidents he was concerned about after going up his command change and reporting it to the proper authority. Manning didn't do any of that.

Why should the law not apply to Manning? I don't get why he should not be charged or face any consequences. Just because Manning didn't agree with US policy didn't give him the right to break the law and violate the nondisclosure forms he signed.

I don't see how you can honestly argue that Manning should suffer no consequences for his actions.
 
 
+9 # Vern Radul 2013-02-28 18:39
The law you want to apply to Manning does apply. He was required by law to do what he did.

His treatment has been tantamount to torture. By not opposing it you are supporting war criminals.

U.S. Code: CHAPTER 113C--TORTURE
http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/part-I/chapter-113C

Summary of International and U.S. Law Prohibiting Torture
http://hrw.org/english/docs/2004/05/24/usint8614.htm

International and U.S. law prohibits torture and other ill-treatment of ANY person in custody in ALL circumstances.. . the prohibition against torture and ill-treatment is absolute.
...
Torture is defined as an "act committed by a person acting under the color of law specifically intended to inflict severe physical or mental pain or suffering (other than pain or suffering incidental to lawful sanctions) upon another person within his custody or physical control." A person found guilty under the act can be incarcerated for up to 20 years or receive the death penalty if the torture results in the victim's death.

Obama belongs in the prisoners dock in the Hague beside Bush, Cheney, RumsFeld and a few others.

Your pleas for "civility" and "politeness" are pleas for others to agree with you that committing war crimes and supporting and excusing those who do so should be considered a "reasonable" approach, an "opinion" as valid as any other opinion. It is not, anymore than it was at the Nuremberg trials.
 
 
-4 # Rain17 2013-02-28 23:47
Again, if Manning believed that a war crime happened, he could have notified his chain of command and the IG before indiscriminatel y leaking documents to Wikileaks. He didn't do that.
 
 
+3 # Vern Radul 2013-03-01 08:48
You are right for once.

Manning did not bother reporting war crimes to the people committing those war crimes.
 
 
+1 # flippancy 2013-03-03 08:10
Quoting Rain17:
Again, if Manning believed that a war crime happened, he could have notified his chain of command and the IG before indiscriminately leaking documents to Wikileaks. He didn't do that.


Do you have any military experience? Reporting that to his superiors would have been so counterproducti ve as to have destroyed his life without the information ever reaching the public.
 
 
+5 # squinty 2013-02-28 17:54
The issue progressives had with the Plame outing was the hypocrisy of Bush administration officials - and their apologists - who wanted to deceive the american people and discredit the soure of information that didn't support the administration' s political ends. So, when Plame's husband investigated WMD claims and the administration didn't like the conclusions he drew, they sought to discredit him - by outing his wife and making accusations of nepotism.
That's the opposite of what Manning did or at least, the intent was very different from Manning's.
Which of Plame's sources were killed or jailed when her spy status was exposed?
 
 
-3 # Rain17 2013-02-28 23:50
I don't know what sources who worked with Plame were killed or jailed, but that is inevitably what happens when they are compromised. Foreign governments don't take kindly on who provide secrets to other countries. And unlike the US, where there are trials and hearings, in many of those countries, those sources inevitably meet gruesome ends.
 
 
0 # flippancy 2013-03-03 08:11
The CIA said dozens of their undercover people were executed because of the outing of Plame.
 
 
-13 # Rain17 2013-02-28 16:36
. . . .Continued from last post. . .

The bottom line here is that there are rules for handling classified information. Those given access to such information know when they first get briefed into those programs what the rules and the consequences are for unauthorized disclosure.

I don't think Manning released the information for noble reasons. Based on what I've read about him it's clear that that the young man is suffering from severe mental problems. Nonetheless, while his mental issues are definitely an extenuating circumstances that a judge should take into consideration when sentencing occurs, they don't excuse his actions either.

I know some of you vehemently disagree with US foreign/militar y policy. Some of you may disagree with military policy. But that doesn't give Manning the right to break the law.

And finally, as I said in my original reply, the release of those cables inevitably compromised sources working for the US government. Almost certainly many of those sources probably have met gruesome ends.

If we allowed everyone who disagreed with US policy to indiscriminatel y release classified information to those without a legitimate need to know, no sources would work with the US government. And the US government would be crippled in many areas.

Now I hope you can respond to my posts without flaming or downrating me automatically.
 
 
+3 # Vern Radul 2013-02-28 17:26
You supposed support for your badly misrepresented version of rule of law is selective at best.

It IS a crime to engage in war crimes.

I'd be more interested in hearing Obama plead, while shackled to a chair in a Hague courtroom.

By your own "logic", so would you.
 
 
+15 # squinty 2013-02-28 17:47
Manning's mental problems are arguably the result of the inhumane conditions of his detainment. Arguably, that would make his guilty plea coerced.

I think he DID release information to Wikileaks for noble reasons, and IMO in a democracy every voter has a "right to know" - there is a need for secrecy, in a very limited scope - troop movements, bomb schematics, the identity of covert agents (yes, like Plame and others) etc. - but "national security" is used more often as a rationale for shielding the government from accountability and transparency, than for the legitimate protection of American citizens. The public has a "need to know" what our servants do. Manning's actions can be defended as civil disobedience.
 
 
+9 # Torvus 2013-02-28 18:02
Let us say your remarks are reasonable. Tell me, was there any reason to treat BM or anyone, in the diabolical way he has been treated in Quantico, especially if it were known he had severe mental problems? Maybe in the US you treat all your prisoners in this way - especially if they are mentally ill - I don't know - just to drive them over the edge. Why was he sent into the battle arena if it was known he was unfit? The military were just asking on bended knee for some sort of repercussion there. Again, under military law I see absolutely no reason why it is so that plain-in-sight military murderers get away with it and BM did not get away with his, comparatively speaking, indiscretion. For while you show sympathy towards those whose lives may have been compromised (were they in fact?) by the Wikileaks revelations, what about those blameless innocent citizens going about their daily jobs, gunned down in their very own streets by yahoo invaders in their own country? What contra observation have you to make on Antemedius' Army Study Guide reference above your last post? Is that the difference between Guides and Rules maybe?
 
 
+8 # PGreen 2013-02-28 18:56
Using Nuremberg as a precedent, it is the responsibility (under international law) of a soldier to put the ethics of humanity over the laws of their own nation. Mannings act of releasing information could be seen as actions taken for that reason. Practically speaking, no country will EVER admit that those Nuremberg conditions apply to themselves, so the argument that US laws should be broken due to war crimes, while a valid argument, will never be accepted. US courts SHOULD, however, listen to the argument. But the US will never even consider it because of the off chance that such principles, either now or in the future, will be found to apply to them. I think that the US should at least accept the legal argument to be openly made-- at trial, etc. Don't you?
Further, it could be argued that many US acts which Mannings exposed ENDANGER its citizens by creating more terrorists, rather than keep them safe. This argument also deserves to be heard.
Finally, the argument that secrecy doesn't exist deserves to be made. All nations, at an official level, already knew everything contained in the Wikileaks releases. This could easily be established. US official secrets are only secrets from the world public, and especially from the US public. It is the nature of public control in a country which suffers from what Chomsky calls, "the crisis of democracy."
BTW, No downrating here.
 
 
-3 # Rain17 2013-03-01 00:34
You do make interesting points. The problem with your first question is that, unless I am mistaken, Manning never pursued the issue with his superiors. He never reported it to the proper Army/military authorities and didn't exhaust all administrative remedies available to him. So he didn't try to resolve the issue through the proper channels before resorting to leaking the documents. The other hole in your first premise is that he apparently released thousands of documents beyond the incidents he was concerned about. So, even if Manning felt like laws were being broken, he didn't alert his superiors.

The second point is a policy argument. You may disagree with US foreign or military policy, but the venue to changing those policies is through elections, editorials, and lobbying officials to change positions. Even if Manning believed that US policies were counterproducti ve that still doesn't absolve him of the right to protect information that the Army had entrusted him with.

Continued in next post. . . .
 
 
+3 # PGreen 2013-03-01 11:14
1)Wired's Spencer Ackerman reported:
"Manning said he often found himself frustrated by attempts to get his chain of command to investigate apparent abuses detailed in the documents Manning accessed."
2) These arguments are about the US creating terrorist may be policy disagreements, but they still deserve to be heard. The Vietnam war policies did not change until there was massive opposition on all fronts, public, private and (importantly here) internal. Think of the Pentagon Papers, and Ellsburg who is widely revered as a hero.
 
 
-4 # Rain17 2013-03-01 00:41
. . . .Continued from last post. . . .

The final argument falls because there is a reason why foreign governments and sources working with the US don't want sensitive details of their dealings released. The release of such information can often undermine or embarrass those governments. Releasing sensitive information can also undermine treaties, negotiations between countries, and other large-scale diplomatic efforts.

The unauthorized release of information can also place foreign sources in danger. Other countries don't take kindly on those with access to sensitive information who betray their governments. Those who do get exposed usually meet a gruesome end for working with the US.

The bottom line for me with Manning is that, although it was clear that he was a very confused young man and that he had issues with US policies, that didn't give him the right to violate the nondisclosure statements he signed.
 
 
+3 # PGreen 2013-03-01 11:22
3) Since Valerie Plame was outed by officials within the administration (with no cost to them), it seems disingenuous to blame Manning for what is essentially a political tactic: the control and release of information without regard to consequence.
But foreign governments, like the US, keep secrets from their own people, not from the officials in other nations. There is no reason that we need to go along with it-- nor do we without a quid pro quo. There is no reason to think that such a Faustian bargain, which is never argued openly, should be honored by a moral public. To insist that it should be honored is to argue for blind obedience to authority.
Openness. The public has a right to know.
 
 
-2 # Rain17 2013-03-01 14:14
And if the US government acted like that numerous treaties and sensitive diplomatic agreements would never get signed. If you honestly don't believe that the US government has the right to keep any information secret there's no point in discussing this further.
 
 
+3 # PGreen 2013-03-01 13:30
I will add one further point. The essence of democracy is openness, specifically (in our version) informed consent, which is not possible without openness. The Manning trial is a direct assault of democratic principles. The burden of proof must always rest on the government that secrecy is paramount to the public interest in a particular instance. Not only has the government not made such a case, they haven't even tried to state any parameters for it, which is tantamount to arguing for unlimited authority in all cases-- the exact opposite of democratic principles. The fact that Manning broke with them (after arguing with his superiors, BTW) is to be applauded.
 
 
-1 # NOMINAE 2013-02-28 20:55
[/quote name="Rain17"].....
If we allowed everyone who disagreed with US policy to indiscriminatel y release classified information to those without a legitimate need to know, no sources would work with the US government.....

Now I hope you can respond to my posts without flaming or downrating me automatically.

Your critical thinking skills seem to be firmly intact. What puzzles me, however, is what appears to be an almost pathological dread of these silly damned red "thumbs".

Please understand that "thumbs" do not always reflect understanding or even agreement with your comments whether they are up or down.

And you knew you were "singing out of tune" of the standard "Party Line" on this one, thus disrupting the harmony of the Echo Chamber.

You have many "thumbs" out there. Some, in fact, many have no knowledge of the law, civilian or military, and are simply responding from the knee-jerk emotional "gut" level. Meaning that you may be correct, but they don't LIKE the fact that you are correct. It wasn't what they wanted to hear. Who cares ?

Others are very familiar with the law, but are in denial of the illegalities because they LIKED what Manning did.

I count myself among those who KNOW that Manning violated enough Military law to "disappear" him for life, but I CELEBRATE what he DID !

Few people will admit to that position. That what Manning did was TOTALLY illegal, but I'm SO GLAD that he DID it !
 
 
-5 # Rain17 2013-02-28 23:54
For me what separates Manning from other whistle blowers is that he didn't try to work within his chain of command before he released the information. He didn't contact his superiors or the IG to report his concerns. The other point is that, if he had only released information about the incidents he was concerned about, I could see him as a "whistle blower". Instead he apparently indiscriminatel y leaked thousands of documents to Wikileaks.

But the bottom line to me is that he signed documents agreeing not to release classified information. And he knew what the consequences would be before he released the documents.

Even though I believe that what Manning did was illegal, I do agree with others that he had emotional issues. And I would hope that the judge sentencing him takes those factors into consideration, but it's not an excuse for what he did.
 
 
+2 # PGreen 2013-03-01 11:30
It remains to be seen whether what he did will be found illegal (at trial) or justified by circumstance and US policy. The former is more likely, given the general inclination of the courts to protect establishment policy, but I'm hoping that Manning will be acquitted.
 
 
+7 # Smiley 2013-02-28 23:07
Your arguments failed to win the day at Nuremberg after WW2, when we, the winners, made it absolutely clear that human rights trumps military policy every time. And...musings about Manning's motivations are irrelevant. What he did was heroic. If we have more who would do the same we might save our country yet.
 
 
+3 # Vern Radul 2013-02-28 17:27
Since Obama was murdering innocent kids around the world during his first term, the only reasonable assumptions that can be made after the fact are that not only is Obama a terrorist by all definitions of the word, and this was no secret at the time of the election, Barack Obama is a terrorist who deserves to be in prison enjoying fairer and more humane treatment than he doles out to his overseas victims with Hellfire missiles and to his American torture victims like Bradley Manning.

The man belongs in a cell, with Bush and Cheney. He is their getaway driver.

Anyone who voted for Barack Obama in 2012 and is now supporting him is either consciously and intentionally a terrorist sympathizer and supporter, or is just plain stupid.
 
 
+4 # Rain17 2013-03-01 00:16
With all due respect I find your post to be a little extreme. I'm glad that I voted for President Obama because I've seen the havoc that the US healthcare system firsthand. I watched a family relative die from not having access to health insurance. A Romney victory would have significant hurt many Americans out there for whom Obamacare provides their only method to access healthcare and not endure financial ruination.
 
 
-4 # Vern Radul 2013-03-01 11:09
I see.

You liked the multi-billion dolllar giveaway to the insurance industry couched as a bribe that will cost your family at least $15,000 a year - but the war crimes, murder and terrorism committed in your name bothered you so little that you have no problem just ignoring it.
 
 
0 # Rain17 2013-03-01 14:08
Well, as someone who lost a dear relative to not having health insurance, your words honestly ring hollow with me. I guess that you're one of those liberals who, if you can't get 100% of what you want, would rather have nothing at all. It's great that you have the luxury of taking positions like that. But most people don't have the luxury of staking extremist positions, refusing to compromise, and then doing nothing.
 
 
-4 # Vern Radul 2013-03-01 19:23
On Friday, across-the-boar d cuts of $85 billion are set to go into effect, wreaking havoc on most government operations. Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP, the Children’s Health Insurance Program and what’s left of welfare are not directly affected, but these so-called “entitlement” programs have, in fact, always been the primary targets of this cascade of manufactured crises... Obama is fully complicit in the corporate-impos ed charade.
...
It was Obama who swallowed whole the corporate argument, previously championed by Republicans, that the national debt was Crisis Number One and that entitlement programs were the root cause. From the moment in January of 2009 when Obama served notice that Social Security and all other entitlements would be put on the chopping block, he became the chief mover and shaker for so-called entitlement reform. He created the model for austerity, through his Simpson-Bowles deficit reduction commission. It was Simpson-Bowles that provided the basis for the massive cuts offered by President Obama in 2011. When the Republicans balked at even a modest tax increase for the rich, it was the White House National Economic Council Director, the corporate deal-maker Gene Sperling, who came up with the sequestration scheme, which was timed to explode right after the 2012 elections. The idea was to make every popular constituency in the country scream – and accept the inevitability of massive entitlement cuts.

http://tinyurl.com/SequesterThis
 
 
+5 # PGreen 2013-03-01 11:48
Noam Chomsky once remarked that if the Nuremberg principles were applied objectively, every post-war president would be hanged (including Carter, who was the best of them.) There are certainly numerous details that could be enumerated to make a strong case against all of them.
I'm not sure why you find Antemedius' rhetoric extreme. Objectively speaking, the description of US military actions in undeclared wars as terrorism is accurate. We simply do not apply the same standards to ourselves (and our allies who promote our policies) as to others. It DOES take a conscious effort to distance yourself from this bias, if you are from a background that is emersed in it.
I think that The Affordable Care Act will be a marginal improvement over what we have had, but it is ironic to the Democrats that Richard Nixon proposed almost exactly the same plan decades ago.
Lets not congratulate ourselves on having fixed the problem. We have a lot of work to do to make HC more affordable, efficient, and inclusive. Personally, I think Medicare for all (single-payer) is the answer.
 
 
+1 # Rain17 2013-03-01 14:12
The ACA is hardly a panacea. There are still significant problems with the US healthcare system. But again, speaking from someone who lost a relative due to not having insurance, it is better than nothing. I don't have the luxury of staking out inflexible, extremist, ideological positions. I suspect that, if you were to ask Anmedius, nothing short of what exists in the UK or France would have satisfied him/her; and, absent that, he/she would argue for not doing anything. It's great to take positions like that when you can afford the luxury of ideological stridency. Most other people aren't in that position.
 
 
+1 # Rain17 2013-02-28 17:29
One other point. It's pretty sad that I can't voice my opinion in a civil tone with some people here downrating me simply because I don't agree with them.
 
 
0 # flippancy 2013-03-03 08:19
Quoting Rain17:
One other point. It's pretty sad that I can't voice my opinion in a civil tone with some people here downrating me simply because I don't agree with them.


In case you haven't noticed, downrating is properly used BECAUSE you disagree with your conclusions. In my case I have given you both thumbs up and thumbs down depending solely on your point.

How nicely or badly your rhetoric is expressed should have little to do with what color thumb you get.
 
 
-2 # cafetomo 2013-02-28 17:54
Guilty, goes in jail.
Innocent, goes just the same.

Been one so long, try the other, see if it makes a difference. Unless you're guilty.

Admit that, you've met the end of it.
 
 
+8 # hoodwinkednomore 2013-02-28 18:16
Bradley Manning did nothing illegal. He exposed many of the illegal atrocities being committed in the US military's name. And in the US government's name. Both have been caught with their bloody pants down and courageous Mr. Manning is just another scapegoat. So for any of you who think otherwise what would you do if there were a witness to despicable crimes, including repeated murders and tortures in your very house...but oh, wait the 'witness' were an 'uninvited' guest. Would you self-righteousl y, holier-than-tho uily charge him/her with breaking and entering & trespassing, and leave it at that? Gimme a break. This man is a hero!
 
 
+10 # aaheart 2013-02-28 18:53
How many of the criminal actions Bradley Manning exposed are unpunished and the criminals walking free to commit more war crimes and crimes against humanity? THAT is the measure of this fraudulent Corporate Government.
 
 
-5 # Rain17 2013-03-01 00:20
Yes he did something illegal. You may not agree with the law, but he signed nondisclosure statements agreeing that he would not release classified material to parties without the legitimate need to know. No matter how much you want to rationalize it that is illegal.

I've said in other posts here. Why didn't Manning report it first to his chain of command or the Army IG? Why didn't he exhaust of his administrative options? Why did he indiscriminatel y release thousands of documents?

The bottom line is that some of you want to make an exception in the law because you fundamentally disagree with US foreign policy. We can't have a system where you enforce the law for some people, but not for others.

Now I do agree that Manning may have extenuating circumstances, such as the mental health issues he was dealing with. But that doesn't justify what he did.
 
 
0 # flippancy 2013-03-03 08:21
What you don't seem to understand is that he DID report it up the chain of command and it was butied. If he had tried to make a career of the military he would not have been able to as a result of his reporting these illegal acts.
 
 
+10 # Kathymoi 2013-02-28 18:20
The disturbing element is that sharing or publishing information about crimes our government has committed or lies to the public it has publicized is considered to be treasonus and criminal.
It is defined as "aiding the enemy". Anyone ---absolutely any honest and concerned citizen of the world, American citizen or citizen of any country---might do what Manning did with such information. If he were reporting a private citizen's crime, he would be considered as aiding justice. Reporting the crimes of the government is considered aiding the enemy. It makes it sound as if justice is the enemy of the government.
 
 
0 # NOMINAE 2013-02-28 21:08
Quoting Kathymoi:
The disturbing element is that sharing or publishing information about crimes our government has committed or lies to the public it has publicized is considered to be treasonus and criminal.
It is defined as "aiding the enemy". Anyone ---absolutely any honest and concerned citizen of the world, American citizen or citizen of any country---might do what Manning did with such information. If he were reporting a private citizen's crime, he would be considered as aiding justice. Reporting the crimes of the government is considered aiding the enemy. It makes it sound as if justice is the enemy of the government.


Excellent, excellent analysis, but for one point. Manning's problem is that he was not a "citizen" either foreign or domestic. One you are in the Military, you are subject to Military, not civilian law, unless the military decides to Court Marshal you for something and THEN turn you over to Civil Authorities to be punished again. This, of course, violates the civilian protection against "Double Jeopardy", but I say again, when you are in the Military, your rights as a CIVILIAN are GONE.
 
 
+9 # LandLady 2013-02-28 19:15
Rain17, I think you have made some good points, and I'm glad for those who did not berate you personally even if they disagreed. I'm concerned about the mainstream stories on this today; they seem to only stress that Manning has pled guilty, they don't distinguish among the charges, as the RSN excellent article did. Also, I hope this will not affect J. Assange negatively? Is he still holed up in an embassy in London? Also Glenn Greenwald has said that most of the more than 1 million pages Wikileaks disclosed was very boring and banal, routine embassy talk, yet every page was stamped "Classified." And things that should be unclassified after say 5 years are kept secret for 50! We have a very secretive government these days! Not healthy. Perhaps the volume Manning released can be seen in this light, Rain 17? Sure, you sign an agreement to not release secrets, but what if the gov't stamps virtually EVERYTHING it does secret???
 
 
-5 # Rain17 2013-03-01 00:04
The bottom line with Manning is that he signed releases not to disclose classified information. There is a reason why some information is not shared with the general public, especially when it concerns foreign sources and governments. And even if you may think the classified information isn't that "sensitive", that doesn't change the fact that the information is classified. It also doesn't mean that the person with the information is free to disclose it as he/she sees fit.

You may disagree with why/how some information is classified. That still doesn't absolve those with the knowledge of the information of the obligation to protect it from unauthorized disclosure.

I suspect that Manning was simply a young man with significant psychological issues who should have gotten help. Like all too many people he fell through the cracks. He seems to have been suffering from significant mental issues.
 
 
0 # tomo 2013-03-03 22:45
Each year we celebrate Martin Luther King Day. The shining torch of freedom of conscience and the justice of civil disobedience that passed from Thoreau to Gandhi was brought back to America in the hands of MLK. Yet one might think, Rain, in reading your comment that King lived in vain, and that our national day of remembrance is in fact a day of national amnesia.
 
 
+3 # MidwestDick 2013-02-28 22:56
What if Bradley Manning had been able to release a portfolio of documents that made it clear that the War in Iraq and all the justifications for it were the flagrant lies that they have proved to be? And he released them before Shock and Awe?
What if the fools and cynics running the show had to back off because of it?
Then would all those who are blabbing about "the law", "non-disclosure agreements" shut the F$%# up?
Not likely.
 
 
0 # Vern Radul 2013-03-01 11:52
Published on Feb 11, 2013 by bravenewfoundation

War on Whistleblowers: Free Press and The National Security State:

In a Democracy, citizens are entitled to the freedom of information and the freedom of the press, but what happens when that democratic government turns its back on the truth and begins to punish those who stand up to falsehood, secrecy, and deception? In Robert Greenwald's latest film for Brave New Foundation, we reveal the war targeted at the people who put the US constitution before everything. We reveal the War on Whistleblowers.

VIDEO: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPa1egjdEpA
..............................
 
 
+3 # Torvus 2013-03-01 14:31
Here's a 'what if': If BM had reported up the line of command what he considered crimes against humanity, what might have happened? Quietly booted out? Sent to an asylum? Heavily and nastily leaned on yet again? At the same time, the revolting information would have remained 'Secret'. He'd have suffered for nothing. Why would he have sent the information to Wikileaks in the first place? Because he knew it would get out. Yes, he has suffered (all but being sent to an asylum, but under Lubianka2 guidance that may still happen) but the information was made public. I'd like to know why crimes against humanity are subsumed to military law in this case. Does that make the military inhumane as a matter of course? It's OK to murder, kill innocent citizens, if you're in the military? Great advertising for those psychopaths interested. If you are dead sure your whistleblowing up the line of command is going to get results for the culprits, then fine. But there is no whistleblowing protection for anybody, basically. Some civilians have been killed for it, never mind the military. BM might be. So we all keep quiet to save ourselves, is that it?
 
 
0 # flippancy 2013-03-03 08:25
Actually he did report it and your scenario is pretty much what happened.
 
 
+3 # Torvus 2013-03-01 21:06
LizR is right. For crimes against humanity no-one can claim the defence of 'obedience to superior orders'. Former Yugolavia and Rwanda come to mind. Is the US somehow exempt? Why? The crime of torture applies in peace and war. Bradley was tortured whilst in detention, before even being charged, and before guilt or innocence had been proven. OUR taxes pay for our military (a nationalised industry, not a private army). Why then should we not be allowed to inspect, criticise and publicise the actions taken on our behalf, and hold those responsible for crimes to account? Praiseworthy actions are given publicity, but not the blameworthy. We have a right to know what is going on, who is doing it and why. Who were those in charge who oversaw these crimes, and why have they got away with it but Bradley is getting the full force of legal action against him? Bradley is reported as saying in court to have been motivated by the "bloodlust" of some of his colleagues in combat, adding: "I thought these cables were a prime example of the need for a more open diplomacy ... I felt I accomplished something that would allow me to have a clear conscience ... In attempting counter-insurge ncy operations, we became obsessed with capturing and killing human targets on lists ..." What price a clear conscience, while those with murder on their hands sleep softly. And maybe it's time to have a health survey of veterans trying to recover from various actions around the world.
 
 
+1 # hammermann 2013-03-02 17:27
Even if this judge is fair and decent, BM is going away for a long time (+8 years). He embarrassed the US Government, unlike the Banksters that stole and disappeared $11 tril. They were just being "creative". Unlike Assange, who ain't an American and operated as a journalist, they have a case against poor Manning. Sad situation all around- should gone to Venezuela.
 
 
0 # tomo 2013-03-03 22:31
It is interesting to me that the best reporting on Manning seems to be being done by the Brits. Maybe they heard the voices of Thomas Paine and Samuel Adams when we took arms against Britain, and they still remember what they heard--while we have come to think the notion of "natural rights" is a quaint relic from the past.
 
 
0 # intheEPZ 2013-03-04 09:09
Bradley Manning is simply a hero. His heart is pure. May Spirit be with him in his coming trial and may he soon be freed to continue his important work.
 

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