After Revealing Atrocities of Asymmetrical Warfare, Manning Will Face Asymmetrical Trial
Monday, 04 March 2013 10:29
By Chris Hedges, Truthdig | News Analysis
Department of Army photo of PFC Bradley Manning.Department of Army photo of PFC Bradley Manning. (Photo: United States Army)I was in a military courtroom at Fort Meade in Maryland on Thursday as Pfc. Bradley Manning admitted giving classified government documents to WikiLeaks. The hundreds of thousands of leaked documents exposed U.S. war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as government misconduct. A statement that Manning made to the court was a powerful and moving treatise on the importance of placing conscience above personal safety, the necessity of sacrificing careers and liberty for the public good, and the moral imperative of carrying out acts of defiance. Manning will surely pay with many years—perhaps his entire life—in prison. But we too will pay. The war against Bradley Manning is a war against us all.
This trial is not simply the prosecution of a 25-year-old soldier who had the temerity to report to the outside world the indiscriminate slaughter, war crimes, torture and abuse that are carried out by our government and our occupation forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is a concerted effort by the security and surveillance state to extinguish what is left of a free press, one that has the constitutional right to expose crimes by those in power. The lonely individuals who take personal risks so that the public can know the truth—the Daniel Ellsbergs, the Ron Ridenhours, the Deep Throats and the Bradley Mannings—are from now on to be charged with “aiding the enemy.” All those within the system who publicly reveal facts that challenge the official narrative will be imprisoned, as was John Kiriakou, the former CIA analyst who for exposing the U.S. government’s use of torture began serving a 30-month prison term the day Manning read his statement. There is a word for states that create these kinds of information vacuums: totalitarian.
The cowardice of The New York Times, El Pais, Der Spiegel and Le Monde, all of which used masses of the material Manning passed on to WikiLeaks and then callously turned their backs on him, is one of journalism’s greatest shames. These publications made little effort to cover Manning’s pretrial hearings, a failure that shows how bankrupt and anemic the commercial press has become. Rescuing what honor of our trade remains has been left to a handful of independent, often marginalized reporters and a small number of other individuals and groups—including Glenn Greenwald, Alexa O’Brien, Nathan Fuller, Kevin Gosztola (who writes for Firedog Lake), the Bradley Manning Support Network, political activist Kevin Zeese and the courtroom sketch artist Clark Stoeckley, along with The Guardian, which also published the WikiLeaks documents. But if our domesticated press institutions believe that by refusing to defend or report on Manning they will escape the wrath of the security and surveillance state, they are stunningly naive. This is a war that is being played for keeps. And the goal of the state is not simply to send Manning away for life. The state is also determined to extradite WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and try him in the United States on espionage or conspiracy charges. The state hopes to cement into place systems of information that will do little more than parrot official propaganda. This is why those with the computer skills to expose the power elite’s secrets, such as Aaron Swartz, who committed suicide in January, and Jeremy Hammond, who is facing up to 30 years in prison for allegedly hacking into the corporate security firm Stratfor, have been or are being ruthlessly hunted down and persecuted. It is why Vice President Joe Biden labeled Assange a “high-tech terrorist,” and it is why the Bradley Manning trial is one of the most important in American history.
“While We Were Sleeping”
Orwell Rolls In His Grave, featuring MCM – Buy the DVD
About News From Underground
News From Underground is a daily e-news service run by Mark Crispin Miller, a Professor of Culture and Communication at NYU. It is based on his belief that academics, like reporters, have a civic obligation to help keep the people well-informed, so that American democracy might finally work.
If you'd like to receive updates delivered to your inbox daily, sign up for News From Underground Alerts:
Help News From Underground!
Message from Mark: "I am a one-man operation, although assisted greatly by some volunteers, and, now and then, by people paid by others for one-time projects. There is no shortage of skilled, dedicated folks out there who want to help me. There is, however, nothing I can pay them with, unless you decide you can contribute something."
Please donate via the PayPal button above or via PayPal by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Catholic right goes ape over Pope Francis’ “green agenda”
- Those who forget how Jeb helped steal the White House for his brother have doomed the rest of us to living under HIM as “president”
- This could be big: Kansas statistician sues for paper tapes from e-voting machines
- NYTimes breaks the story of Clinton lunching at Chipotle
- Police cadet sees cops beat homeless man, reports it, quits Academy (out of fear?)
- FBI charged with “whitewash” of Saudi link to 9/11 on
- TEPCO slammed for year-long cover-up of latest radioactive leak on
- If Jeb Bush steals the White House, he’ll cut Medicaid, raise the retirement age, means test Social Security, and…. on
- Don Siegelman won’t be released from prison (WHY won’t Obama pardon him?) on
- Democrats won’t say a word about high-flying pedophile (and FOB) Jeffrey Epstein—and neither will Republicans! (How come?) on
- Please SIGN Elizabeth Warren's petition to halt "fast track" of TPP!
- NY Fed moving to Chicago, Feds stocking up on ammo, NORAD hunkering down: What's up?
- Don't buy these products from Koch Industries!
- The strange death of Nancy Schaefer (two items)
- Forbidden Bookshelf
- Talking Points Memo
- t r u t h o u t
- Barry Gordon
- Democratic Undergroud
- Media Matters
- History Unfolding
- Citizens for Legitimate Government
- William Betz
- Early America
- Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting
- alias Bruce
- Suburban Guerrilla
- Election Defense Alliance
- The Rude Pudit
- The Ostroy Report
- Richard Charnin
- Evil GOP Bastards
- Words of Power
Need a bigger font size?
- Your link could be here too, contact us for pricing details.