”What Bradley Manning did may not be to everyone’s taste but there is a larger issue here and that is the accountability of the people we elect and the decisions they make on our behalf. In not standing up to them en masse we are as guilty as the soldiers and officers that are “just following orders” and with this we leave a young man, still 25 despite 1162 days of confinement, facing a further 136 years in prison for not following those orders, for standing his ground and governments, responsible for war crimes, being allowed to walk away without a care in the world whilst they plot their invasion and liberation of their next country.”
…”The white house could claim that unleashing democracy and freedom has been the real target behind the invasion of Iraq while journalist reports and wikileaks documents have shown and revealed the American collaboration with Saddam`s intelligence and security officers to kill and torture thousands of unarmed civilian Iraqis.
Saturday, August 3, 2013
Cleared of aiding the enemy, Bradley Manning still faces a lifetime in jail. The very least we owe this heroic man is a debate on US foreign policy
From The Independent UK: http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/cleared-of-aiding-the-enemy-bradley-manning-still-faces-a-lifetime-in-jail-the-very-least-we-owe-this-heroic-man-is-a-debate-on-us-foreign-policy-8738212.html
Manning revealed the sordid realities of war that the armchair warriors want sanitised
Owen Jones Tuesday 30 July 2013
And so it is with Bradley Manning. Although a military judge has found him not guilty of aiding the enemy, the guilty verdicts on other charges will leave him languishing in military custody for much, if not all, of his life: indeed, he faces a sentence of 130 years. Here is the sacrifice he has paid for exposing the secretive actions of a government that claims to act in the name of the US people.
Here’s why. Over a decade ago, the US initiated two calamitous wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, with a terrible human cost that is still paid every single day. The then-UN Secretary General Kofi Annan declared that the Iraq invasion was illegal; the country is today still awash with car bombings and gruesome sectarian bloodletting. It was always in the interests of the US elite to keep the consequences of their actions as far away from public consciousness as possible. The justification is that such secrecy is needed to protect the American people from the country’s enemies. “It’s for your own good” is the stock defence of every authoritarian. But the real aim is to stem opposition. Every US hawk still shivers at the photographs of naked Vietnamese children, faces contorted with panic, running with their skin burned after a napalm attack, which helped galvanise the anti-war movement of the 1960s and 70s.
By being responsible for the biggest leak of classified information in US history, Manning revealed the sordid realities of a war that the armchair warriors want sanitised. Like an Apache helicopter, bombing the life out of Iraqi civilians and a Reuters journalist, the corrupted pilots dismissing their victims as “dead bastards”. He found evidence of US-backed death squads and militias operating in Afghanistan. He helped reveal the rampant corruption of the US-backed Tunisian dictatorship, who basked in luxurious homes and extravagant lifestyles while their people suffered grinding poverty, providing ammunition for the revolutionaries who toppled Ben Ali.
Continue reading at: http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/cleared-of-aiding-the-enemy-bradley-manning-still-faces-a-lifetime-in-jail-the-very-least-we-owe-this-heroic-man-is-a-debate-on-us-foreign-policy-8738212.html
- This brave man is owed a debate (iol.co.za)
- Bradley Manning is no traitor but he must still go to jail (thetimes.co.uk)
- Manning Revealed the Sordid Realities of War that the Armchair Warriors Want Sanitised (counterinformation.wordpress.com)
- Julian Assange: conviction of Bradley Manning a dangerous precedent (theguardian.com)
- ‘Do the Right Thing’: World Rallies Behind Bradley Manning (commondreams.org)
- Bradley Manning’s mother urges him to ‘never give up hope’ (theguardian.com)
- Bradley Manning: ‘The only crime he has committed is that he cares,’ says Welsh playwright (walesonline.co.uk)