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Galindez reports: "After just three days of testimony, Bradley Manning's defense attorney David Coombs rested his case."

Bradley Manning's attorney David Coombs at Ft. Meade. (photo: unknown)
Bradley Manning's attorney David Coombs at Ft. Meade. (photo: unknown)

Bradley Manning Defense Rests Its Case

By Scott Galindez, Reader Supported News

10 July 13


fter just three days of testimony, Bradley Manning's defense attorney, David Coombs, rested his case.

The defense included nine witnesses and a stipulation as to what a 10th witness would have testified to. Most of the evidence presented dealt with the procedures that were used in Manning's unit. Witnesses testified that Bradley Manning was the go-to guy for producing product and for how to use their computers. The quality control officer described Manning as the best analyst in the unit for developing product.

It was established that all analysts were expected to data mine from unlimited sources. Witnesses indicated that it was not illegal to download classified information to a CD. Evidence was also presented that the use of an executable file was allowed as long as the file was not installed on the computer but was instead run from a disk.

Evidence was presented that information in the leaked documents was also available in public sources.

More important, one witness testified about Bradley Manning's values. She testified that he was learning as much as he could about politics and philosophy so that he could better advise his superiors in an effort to save lives. The witness described Manning as someone who held deep humanitarian views and placed a high value on human life.

Another witness said most of the troops in their unit were just worried about getting through the day, while Manning followed the news and often expressed concerns about what was happening.

The defense painted a picture of Manning as a competent, naive young man who wanted to save lives.


David Coombs: "The premise of the government's case is that Wikileaks is a bad organization that aids the enemy, not an award winning organization that facilitated sharing of information and should be treated as the media."

The final witness was Professor Yochai Benkler

According to Wikimedia, "Benkler is a strong proponent of Wikileaks, characterizing it as a prime example of non-traditional media filling a public watchdog role left vacant by traditional news outlets. In a draft paper written for the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review in February 2011, he uses governmental vilification and prosecution of Wikileaks as a case study demonstrating the need for more robust legal protection for independent media."

Benkler is also a faculty co-director of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University.

In 2009 Benkler started to focus on the "Network 4th Estate," which he described as the cluster of organizations and technologies that now fill the role of the fourth estate.

Benkler testified that Wikileaks was a solution to a very critical component of investigative journalism. Wikileaks is the model for a secure, discreet way to leak documents for use by muckraking journalists. The traditional media would provide context using the raw data that was gathered and authenticated by Wikileaks.

Prior to 2010, Wikileaks published material that led to substantial investigative reports that changed policies throughout the world. Wikileaks was portrayed as a whistleblowing site. Benkler testified that prior to the "Iraq War Logs" the traditional media viewed Wikileaks in a positive light and even defended them and argued that they deserved to be treated just like any other media organization. He argued that only after Manning's leaks and a massive PR campaign by government officials did Wikileaks start to be viewed in a negative light.

Immediately after Benkler left the stand the defense rested its case. There are three defense motions for dismissal that will be heard on Monday July 15th. The Army may call rebuttal witnesses as well before closing arguments in the case. your social media marketing partner
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