…”sometimes you have to pay a heavy price to live in a free society…”
Chelsea (ex-Bradley) Manning’s post-sentence statement, issued by his lawyer, was the kind of statement you would expect to be given by a Nobel Peace Prize recipient in their acceptance speech. It is both unequivocal and profound. …
That Manning issues such a statement on the day he is sentenced to 35 years in prison is testimony to his resilience, his courage and his love. In doing so, the politicians of this world must surely cower in shame. If President Obama has any integrity left, he must pardon immediately this noble individual. Below, we reproduce it with one difference: we have added hyperlinks, where relevant, to provide greater perspective…. Continue reading “Manning shames her Tormentors, vows to Live as a Woman”
”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.
Poor Brad Manning faces 130+ yrs in jail .. while the real criminals, robbers, torturers, murderers and ecocidal lunatics are having a wild party tonight…
U.S. Army Private First Class Bradley Manning (R) is escorted by military police as arrives to hear the verdict in his military trial July 30, 2013 at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images/AFP)
The verdicts in the Bradley Manning trial are about to be announced and between now and sentencing – which is likely to commence as soon as next week – it is imperative that you, the world’s media, come together and demand that Manning be released. Whether you are The Guardian, Der Spiegel, the New York Times, the Washington Post, El Pais, Le Monde, The Age or any of those other publications that collaborated or benefited from the publishing of material revealed by Bradley Manning: you are party to the charges raised and Bradley needs your help and intervention now. Continue reading “Manning verdict: to the world’s media – THIS is the moment when Bradley needs your help”
In just over a week from now, the sentencing phase of Bradley Manning’s court martial will commence. Some time in August we will know the verdict on all outstanding charges, as well as the sentence in relation to those charges of which, if any, he has been found guilty. Depending on what happens over the next couple of weeks, a maximum sentence of life imprisonment may still be on the cards. Even if the more serious charges are dismissed, he could still face severe sentencing.
And, so, we are at that critical point when all stops have to be pulled out – for every day, every minute, every second – until the verdict is announced. In short, it’s make or break time. And this is not just about Bradley Manning – it never was – for if he falls, then so do we all.
Though the justice system will deny this, it is a fact that the court of public opinion has significant influence on a trial’s outcome, particularly in the case of a political trial. Moreover, in the land where celebrities are cast as gods, it is inevitable that they too can influence events and decisions, including those of a political nature.
So, to everyone who believes they have influence and that the true criminals in this case are those in Government: this is the time to do whatever you can to make a bold and uncompromising statement – whether that be in the mainstream press, on television, via the Internet or by any other means.
Finally, to those thousands of people around the world who knew that Bradley – a thrice Nobel Peace Prize nominee and acclaimed by three Nobel laureates – should never have been charged in the first place, know that whatever the outcome of this farcical trial if we have the same courage as Manning has shown from day one then we will prevail and see, sooner or later, his liberation.
Note: the above video features a song for Bradley by the UK ska band, The Specials. Below is a copy of a full-page advertisement to be published in the New York Times on July 25 (assuming costs are recouped in time – see here to add your name to the ad). An earlier video tribute by celebrities and well known political commentators is also featured once more.
Worldwide protests in support of Manning are called for July 27. To see where, click here .
Go for it!
1. The U.S. government ended its five-week case against Manning in the first week of July, after
providing no evidence that he had “aided the enemy” by passing military and diplomatic documents to WikiLeaks.
2. Manning’s defense then filed four motions to direct a verdict of not guilty on most of the greater offenses he’s charged with, including “aiding the enemy,” violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and stealing government property. If we take just one of these four charges that of ‘Aiding the enemy’… In January Judge Denise Lind asked the prosecutors, “Would you have pressed the same charges if Manning had given the documents not to WikiLeaks but directly to the New York Times?”. Their reply: “Yes Ma’am.” This reply was interesting in that it equated Wikileaks with all other media, which means, basically, that any media publishing anything about war crimes is in the eyes of the Government, ‘aiding the enemy’: the enemy here being the public. Also, by selectively prosecuting Manning and not, say, the New York Times, the Government demonstrates that this trial is an absurdity and entirely political.
3. An important defense witness was Yochai Benkler, a Law professor, who explained how Wikileaks is a publishing house that uses new methods of gathering and disseminating information. Excellent commentary on Benkler’s testimony is given by Kevin Gosztola. Here is a full transcript of Benkler’s testimony.
4. For commentary by the Bradley Manning Support Group on all the four charges that the defense is seeking dismissal, click here .
Ask any Welsh man or woman about whistleblower Bradley Manning and most will simply say, they want him back.
Back home to Wales, where he spent his childhood; back to a country that – like he – is small in size but grand in its visions; renowned more for its poetry and bards than the wars or arrogance of the country where Manning now finds himself prosecuted merely for telling the truth.
Today…today is the 1000th day of Manning’s incarceration without trial. And on this most inauspicious day we offer an asymmetric take on his prosecution, to examine how it can be subverted – via its ‘Welsh dimension’.
And should you be poetic too you may hear a cry, carried high by the eagles of Myrddin from the misty eyries of Yr Wyddfa, to the song-filled valley of Afon Mawdach and on to the druidic Preseli hills: ‘Gadewch iddo fynd. Gadewch iddo fynd nawr!’*
66 comments By Nicole Belle In New York on Saturday, a public memorial was held for Aaron Swartz, who committed suicide last week. Among the remembrances of Aaron’s genius, his commitment to progressive causes, his idealistic beliefs of making this a better world, there was also an action plan laid out by his partner, Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman:
“Aaron was targeted by the FBI,” said ThoughtWorks chairman Roy Singham, Swartz’s employer before his death. “After PACER, they targeted him. He was strip-searched. Let’s not pretend this wasn’t political,” he argued before being interrupted by applause.
Swartz’s partner Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman framed her call to action in terms of Swartz’s beliefs: “Aaron believed there was no shame in failure. There is deep, deep shame in caring more about believing you’re changing the world than actually changing the world.”Stinebrickner-Kauffman, also an activist, named five targets for action:
Hold the Massachusetts US Attorney’s office accountable for its actions in prosecuting Aaron; Press MIT to ensure that it would “never be complicit in an event like this again”; “All academic research for all time should be made free and open and available to anybody in the world”; Pass and strengthen “Aaron’s Law,” an amendment to the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act that would narrow prosecutorial discretion for computer crimes; Advocate for fundamental reform of the criminal justice system.