Friday, September 20, 2013


OMNI Chelsea (Bradley) Manning Newsletter #5, September 20,  2013, Compiled by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace and Justice.   (#1  Dec. 6, 2011; #2  June 29, 2012; #3 Feb. 24, 2013; #4 June 16, 2013)

These newsletters provide facts and opinions regarding the many subjects of world peace, social and economic justice, human rights, and democracy for the benefit of all who know a well-informed citizenry is essential to a democracy.   Chase Madar alerts us to the great danger of the Manning trial to our democracy.   “. . . the government now has even greater incentive to prosecute as a spy any confidential source who passes classified information to the press, criminalizing what has long been a vital. . .conduit of essential public information.   Such collateral damage to the Fourth Estate will not be mourned by a government that has become aggressively intolerant of leaks, whistleblowers and, it often seems, a well-informed citizenry.”  The Nation (Aug. 19/26, 2013).  --Dick

For more on Manning see my Newsletters and Blogs on WikiLeaks (Assange, Manning).   My Blog:   It's the War Department


Nos. 1 and 2 at end

Contents of #3

1000 Days

Protests for Manning:  We Have Not Forgotten

Protest for Manning in Illinois Oct.  20

Protests for Manning Sept. 6

Nobel Laureates Defend Manning

Manning Denied Fair Trial

Manning’s Detention is Torture

Navy Violated Protocol

Praise for Manning

Madar, The Passion


Contents #4 June 16, 2013

RSN:  Reporting his Trial
Support Journalist Access to Trial
The Nation v. Obama, Call for Protest
Protest Charge of Aiding the Enemy, Call Gen. Linnington, the Pentagon
Thank Manning
TomDispatch: Madar, Passion of Bradley Manning
Chris Hedges, We Are Bradley Manning
Hedges, Legal Lynching
Drinnan, Human Rights Contexts

Contents #5
Wright, Manning Receives International Peace Bureau Award
Manning Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize
Sgt. Bales and Pfc. Manning
Madar, Article in The Nation Aug. 19
Madar’s Book,  Who is Bradley Manning?
Stoeckley’s Graphic Account of the Trial:  Sketches and Transcript
Truthout, Obama:  Surveillance of the People, Secrecy for the Government

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: ann wright <>
To: Ann Wright <> 
Sent: Friday, September 20, 2013 8:15 AM
Subject: Article by Ann Wright--US Army Private Chelsea Manning receives International Peace Bureau award

Remarks for Acceptance for US Army Private Chelsea Manning for the Sean MacBride Peace Award from the International Peace Bureau

By Ann Wright

Photo: This is the Sean MacBride Peace award given to Chelsea Manning by the International Peace Bureau.  the medal was minted before Bradley Manning made the announcement that she wants to be<br />
 known as Chelsea Manning.  
<div>Sean MacBride was a Nobel Peace Laureate, founding member of Amnesty International, Asst Sec Gen of the UN and President of the International Peace Bureau.  He was also jailed for his political ideas.

On behalf of US Army Private Chelsea Manning (previously known as Bradley Manning), I want to thank the International Peace Bureau for its award of the Sean MacBride Peace Award to Private Manning.  When Chelsea was told by her lawyer that IPB had selected her as the recipient of this year’s award, she was overwhelmed that such an organization would recognize her actions as actions for peace.  She knows the history of the MacBride Peace Award, in honor of Sean MacBride, a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, founding member of Amnesty International and a tireless advocate for peaceful resolution of conflict. Private Manning recognizes the works of previous awardees and is deeply honored to be included in their ranks.
As you know, Private Manning is not here to receive the award in person as she is incarcerated in the US military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas after she was sentenced on August 21, 2013 to 35 years in prison for giving over 800.000 pages of government documents known as the Iraq,  Afghanistan, Guantanamo and Diplomatic files to the online publishing organization Wikileaks.  Materials Private Manning provided documented human rights violations and breaches of international humanitarian law by US military, by Iraqi and Afghan military forces operating alongside US forces, and by military contractors. The files included reports on illegal and inhumane battlefield actions and previously unseen footage of journalists and other civilians being killed in US helicopter attacks, information which should  have been made available to the public. 

Private Manning said she acted on the belief that she could spark a meaningful public debate on the cost of war, and specifically on the conduct of the US military in Iraq and Afghanistan She said she did not intend to harm the United States, but wanted to have information about the wars more transparent to the American public. In her February 28, 2013, 10,000 word statement to the court, Private Manning said, “I believed that if the general public, especially the American public, had access to the information contained within the [Iraq and Afghan War Logs] this could spark a domestic debate on the role of the military and our foreign policy in general as well as it related to Iraq and Afghanistan.” news/bradley-mannings- statement-taking- responsibility-for-releasing- documents-to-wikileaks

Private Chelsea Manning’s sentence of 35 years is one that we would have expected for someone who disclosed information in order to harm the United States or who disclosed information for monetary game. Private Manning did neither.
Private Manning’s attorney David Coombs, wrote in a letter to the Secretary of the Army for a pardon and/or commutation of Chelsea’s sentence that, “Although the government is entitled to protect sensitive information, the documents in this case did not merit protection. Many of the documents released by Private Manning were either unclassified or contained information that the public had a right to know. None of the disclosed documents caused any real damage to the United States. Instead, these documents simply embarrassed our country by revealing misconduct by the Department of Defense and unethical practices by the Department of State.  We rely upon whistleblowers, even in those instances that might cause embarrassment, to keep our government accountable to its people. Private Manning is a military whistleblower. She disclosed documents that were vital for a public healthy public debate about our conduct in Iraq and Afghanistan, our detention policies in Guantánamo, and our diplomatic activities around the world. The sentence given to her by the military judge grossly exaggerates the seriousness of her conduct. It will undoubtedly have a chilling effect on future whistleblowers and damage the public’s perception of military justice.”
Civil rights organizations have criticized the harsh sentence given to Pvt. Manning.  Lisa Clayton, who co-directs the Brennan Center for Justice, Liberty and National Security program, called the 35 year sentence unprecedented and stated “it is dramatically longer than the longest sentence previously ever received for disclosing classified information to the media, which was two years."
Ben Wisner, the director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Speech, Privacy, and Technology project, said  "a legal system that does not distinguish between leaks to the press in the public interest and treason against the nation will not only produce unjust results, but will deprive the public of critical information that is necessary for democratic accountability."
Ana Fitzgerald, the director of Amnesty International's Research and Crisis Response, said "Chelsea Manning should be shown clemency in recognition of her motives for acting as she did, the treatment she endured in her early pretrial confinement, and the due process shortcomings during her trial."
While Chelsea Manning faces many years in prison for the public disclosure of documents to WikiLeaks, numerous high-level officials have never been held accountable for the grave human rights violations committed during the United States war on terror including kidnapping, extraordinary rendition, indefinite detention and torture.
Documents released by Wikileaks were published in numerous national newspapers as Chelsea had hoped, citizens around the world read how many of their governments cooperated with the United States in kidnapping, imprisonment and torture in US war on terror—and were outraged as she had been.  
Private Manning has already paid a heavy price for her whistleblowing. She has been held for more than three years in military confinement. A substantial portion of that confinement was spent an unlawful solitary confinement at Marine Corps base Quantico. She endured a three-year protracted legal process and faced a meritless charge of aiding the enemy, which the court dismissed for lack of evidence.
The MacBride Award will encourage and hearten Private Chelsea Manning while she is in prison.
I urge everyone to write Chelsea while she is in prison and to donate to the Chelsea Manning educational fund that the Private Manning Support Group has set up to provide money for her to attend college when she returns to our community. learn-more/write-to-bradley- manning

Again, on behalf of Private Chelsea Manning, I want to thank the International Peace Bureau for selecting her as the recipient of the 2013 Sean MacBride Peace Award.


(NOTE: Ann Wright was asked to receive the Sean MacBride on behalf of Private Manning. She spent 29 years in the US Army/Army Reserves and retired as a Colonel.  She also was a U.S. diplomat for 16 years and resigned in March, 2013 in opposition to the war on Iraq She is a member of the Private Manning Advisory Board.)

Ann Wright
Twitter: annwright46
"Dissent: Voices of Conscience"

13 August 13
Petition Backs Pfc. Manning for Nobel Peace Prize 
USA Today 
Excerpt: "A pacifist group has submitted a petition signed by 100,000 people online in support of awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to U.S. soldier Bradley Manning, who was convicted of espionage for disclosing classified war information to WikiLeaks." 

So do I have this right?  by David D
A US military sergeant who was clearly mentally deranged by his repeated voluntary tours of combat duty in Afghanistan willfully plans & carries out the murder of 17 unarmed Afghan civilians, primarily women & children, pleads guilty in a US military court and is sentenced to life imprisonment with still a chance of parole after 20 yrs while a young private divulges evidence of US war crimes to the world, is convicted of espionage, and sentenced to 35 yrs in prison.
Afghans Dissatisfied With Sgt. Bales' Life Sentence for Massacre of Their Kin 
Associated Press 
Associated Press writes: "Bales, 40, pleaded guilty in June in a deal to avoid the death penalty for his March 11, 2012, raids near his remote outpost in Kandahar province, when he stalked through mud-walled compounds and shot 22 people - 17 of them women and children. Some screamed for mercy, while others didn't even have a chance to get out of bed." 


“The Trials of Bradley Manning

His conviction on Espionage Act charges poses grave dangers for American journalism.”

 [The subtitle in the no. of The Nation that I received is: “He’s a Convenient Scapegoat for a Decade of Foreign Policy Disasters, and He Has Been Treated Accordingly.”  I strongly recommend the article, for it explains why the treatment of Manning has been reprehensible and why the case is so important to the future of US democracy.--Dick]

Closing arguments in the Bradley Manning case.
Chief prosecutor Maj. Ashden Fein in closing arguments. Seated behind him are defense attorney David Coombs, left, and Bradley Manning. Illustration: Clark Stoeckley, from his book  The United States vs. PFC Bradley Manning.
[I have placed some passages in bold for emphasis.  –Dick]

In late July, the trial of Bradley Manning finally came to a close in a heavily air-conditioned courtroom in Fort Meade, Maryland, where the young private from Crescent, Oklahoma, was prosecuted for the largest security breach in US history.

Manning had already pleaded guilty to ten of the lesser charges against him—for instance, unauthorized possession and improper storage of classified material, which together carry a maximum twenty-year term. But this was not enough for the prosecution: it pressed on with a dozen more serious offenses, including the potential capital crime of aiding the enemy as well as charges stemming from the Espionage Act of 1917, which Richard Nixon retooled as a weapon against domestic leakers in his vendetta against Daniel Ellsberg. (Such a use of the statute has never been decided on the legal merits until this case.) Judge Denise Lind announced a verdict that splits the difference, acquitting the soldier of aiding the enemy but convicting him on the Espionage Act charges. Private Manning could still face a prison term of more than 130 years (the sentence will be determined in a separate proceeding). The consequences for American journalism are grave, as the government now has even greater incentive to prosecute as a spy any confidential source who passes classified information to the press, criminalizing what has long been a vital (and tacitly accepted) conduit of essential public information. Such collateral damage to the Fourth Estate will not be mourned by a government that has become aggressively intolerant of leaks, whistleblowers and, it often seems, a well-informed citizenry. 

About the Author

Fort Meade is the too-perfect setting for Manning’s court-martial: an Army base, it is also home to the National Security Agency, now famous for its powers of digital intrusion after the spectacular revelations of whistleblower Edward Snowden. The NSA is the largest bureaucracy in the bloated US security complex, a farrago of draconian harshness coupled with casual indiscipline, dodgy legality with solemn appeals to the rule of law, and state-of-the-art IT with chronic power outages and a shambolic incapacity to run a search of its own employees’ e-mails. 
Private Manning was an Army intelligence analyst deployed at Forward Operating Base (FOB) Hammer in Iraq when, in 2010, he amassed 90,000 field logs from the Afghan War and 392,000 from Iraq, files on the Guantánamo prisoners and 250,000 State Department diplomatic cables—a huge trove, but still less than 1 percent of what Washington classified in 2010. Manning passed them all to WikiLeaks, which published most of them through well-established newspapers and magazines. 
Many of the leaks are not flattering to Washington’s amour-propre. The most famous is the “Collateral Murder” video: the gunsight view from an Apache helicopter opening fire on a couple of armed men and several civilians in Baghdad in July 2007. But the logs from both wars include reports of night raids gone wrong, Afghan outposts laboriously built and then abandoned, civilian casualty estimates whose existence had been officially denied, and documentation of torture by Iraqi authorities under the noses of occupying US soldiers. The diplomatic cables show Washington lobbying to keep the minimum wage down in Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere; to impose US-style patent law regimes abroad for the benefit of Big Pharma; and to suppress criminal investigations in Germany into the CIA kidnapping of a terrorist suspect that turned out to be a case of mistaken identity. 
One might guess that Manning’s exfiltration of so many documents required amazing feats of subterfuge, but it needed no deception beyond scrawling “Lady Gaga” on a CD-ROM, with the files later sent to a WikiLeaks site from a Barnes & Noble in suburban Maryland while the private was on leave. There was no security to speak of at the SCIF (sensitive compartmented information facility) at FOB Hammer, where the “infosec” (information security) protocols were casually flouted with the full knowledge of supervisors. This was not an anomaly: 1.4 million Americans have top-secret security clearances—480,000 of them private contractors. Security clearance vetting is cursory, like so much else about the sloshy and erratic US infosec: intact military hard drives can turn up for sale in the bazaars of Kabul, and top-secret documents have been accessed by all sorts of people through the file-sharing technology installed on government laptops by the children and grandchildren of national security officials, as Dana Priest and William Arkin documented in Top Secret America, their book on our ballooning security state.
The Reaction
Manning hoped his leaks would spark ”worldwide discussions, debates and reforms,” as he put it in an instant-message chat with the acquaintance who turned him in to the authorities. From Pakistani reformist politician Imran Khan to former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva to the Council of Europe, politicians from around the world have paid close attention. So have ordinary citizens. The US ambassador to Tunisia’s brutally candid assessment of that country’s corrupt Ben Ali dictatorship added crucial fuel to the uprising that overthrew him in 2011. Scholars, activists and journalists have learned much from the disclosures, using the files in work that is no less important for being incremental, unsexy and usually under the radar. 
But inside the Washington Beltway, the reception for Manning’s leaks has been far less welcoming. At its best, he’s been greeted with apathy: Alyssa Rosenberg of the Center for American Progress has dismissed Manning as “not a particularly effective whistleblower.” 
The more intense response in DC has been to denounce Manning as a traitor with bloodstained hands. The politicians and pundits who supported the Iraq War tend to be especially liberal with that charge. Hillary Clinton, for instance, called Manning’s leaks “an attack on the international community” that “puts people’s lives in danger” and “threatens our national security.” Adm. Mike Mullen, then chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, offered that WikiLeaks “might already have on their hands the blood of some young soldier or that of an Afghan family”—after he endorsed President Obama’s escalation in Afghanistan
Yet in the three years since Manning’s disclosures, there has been no diplomatic Armageddon or military calamity other than the usual rudderless carnage of American foreign policy. There is no evidence that a single US soldier or civilian has been harmed as a result of his leaks (military spokespeople have admitted that no casualties in Afghanistan have been traced to the WikiLeaks revelations). 
Manning’s culpability remains less a rational accusation than a casual assumption. He is a convenient scapegoat for a decade of military and humanitarian disaster, and he has been treated accordingly. Upon his arrest in May 2010, he was locked up in punitive isolation for two months in Iraq and Kuwait, then nine more months at the Marine Corps brig in Quantico, Virginia. Prohibited from lying down during the day or exercising, he was forced to respond every five of his waking minutes to a guard’s question: “Are you OK?” In his final weeks of isolation, Manning was deprived of all clothing beyond a tear-proof smock and forced to stand at attention every night in the nude. This was all for the prisoner’s own good, Obama assured the nation at a press conference. We now know that a Marine Corps psychiatrist repeatedly advised that Manning be taken off “prevention of injury” watch, and even the judge presiding over his court-martial has ruled that his treatment was illegal. 
Was Manning treated so harshly to get him to implicate Julian Assange of WikiLeaks? To intimidate other potential leakers? Whatever the reason, the abuse was so bad that last year the UN’s special rapporteur on torture, Juan Mendez, formally charged that it “constitutes at a minimum cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.” The isolation torture of Manning aroused a global outcry, leading to his release into the medium-security general population in April 2011. This marked the end of the criticism by most American intellectuals, who made it clear that they had no sympathy for Manning, even as they lapped up the front-page stories derived from his leaks with their morning coffee. 
Although Manning does have some high-profile defenders—Michael Moore, Glenn Greenwald, Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, Code Pink—the field is not crowded. The reflexive willingness of most of the American right to bay for Manning’s scalp has been less remarkable than the silence of progressives. The ACLU once raised money for Daniel Ellsberg’s legal defense, and one might have expected its former president, liberal lion Norman Dorsen, to roar in support of Manning. But even as he condemned Manning’s prison treatment, Dorsen said, “We’ve got to be tough on the people in the government who are like Manning… how are you going to run the government if people are free to leak things to the world using their individual judgment?” In fact, the human rights industry, though it railed against Manning’s confinement, has had little to say about the charges. (The ACLU and Amnesty International mainly limited themselves to condemning the most serious charge of aiding the enemy.)
The panicky response to WikiLeaks from some liberals has had its opera buffa highlights. WNYC radio host Brian Lehrer and New Yorker liberal hawk George Packer clucked like wet hens in horror at WikiLeaks’ release of a (ludicrously) classified list of world locations of strategic interest to the United States. Can we ever be safe now that the terrorists know there are vast mineral reserves in Central Africa, and that the Strait of Gibraltar is a vital shipping lane? Ambrose Bierce said that war is God’s way of teaching geography to Americans, but have we become so infantilized that grade-school factoids must be guarded as state secrets? 
Many intellectuals have labored to draw casuistic distinctions between what they see as Manning’s irresponsible leaking and Daniel Ellsberg’s virtuous leaking of the Pentagon Papers some forty years ago. These exercises zealously avoid the main legal difference: the thousands of documents leaked by Ellsberg were uniformly classified as “top secret,” whereas nothing released by Manning is of that high status. Meanwhile, Ellsberg himself has been a tireless defender of the young soldier, and on a weekly basis has had to reprise Marshall McLuhan’s famous scene in Annie Hall against Manning’s smug detractors. 
It’s Not Personal  [Who Was, Is Manning?  --D]

The individual is erased in mass media smears. We have not heard much about the Bradley Manning who shocked his classmates and teachers by announcing his atheism in grade school; who took care of his alcoholic mother as soon as he was old enough to add up the bills and write the checks; who came out as gay to his best friends at 13. The boy who was designing websites at age 10, who won his school’s science fair three years running. The teen who, when he graduated from high school, didn’t find sufficient financial support from home or the state to attend college, where he badly wanted to study physics or engineering. The post-adolescent youth sleeping in his truck in the parking lot of O’Hare airport, getting by on minimum-wage jobs, a Joad without the family. The young man trying to find stability and a way to get a college education, who joined the Army even though he is queer, fiercely independent of mind and will, and stands 5 feet, 2 inches tall. The soldier who could not join in the celebration of his comrades in Iraq when a convoy of US soldiers narrowly missed an IED that blew up a truck full of Iraqi civilians instead. The intelligence analyst who found out that a group of civilians had been arrested by Iraqi police for handing out a leaflet alleging financial corruption and ran horrified to his commanding officer, since he was well aware that the Iraqi police had a habit of torturing prisoners. The young soldier reported his CO telling him to shut up and get back to work. “Everything started slipping after that…. I saw things differently,” Manning told the confidant who later turned him in. Explaining the reason for his leaks, Manning said, “I want people to see the truth…regardless of who they are…because without information you cannot make informed decisions as a public.” This motive should not be so difficult to understand, given that he was neck deep in America’s worst foreign policy disaster since the Vietnam War. 
But a depoliticized society cannot comprehend a political motive and will instead reduce such acts to psychology, sex or celebrity envy. Some on the right have seized on Manning’s sexual preference and gender identity as the key to his vile deed—part of a long pinkbaiting tradition of impugning minority sexual preference as both the symptom and cause of political treason. On the left, a few have surmised that it must have been Manning’s queerness that endowed him with the extra empathy to commit his noble act. But as to motive, both logic and evidence indicate that Manning’s sexuality is a red herring. After all, of the 1.4 million people with a top-secret clearance, thousands are surely part of the LGBT community—and yet there is only one Bradley Manning. Sexuality is no indicator of political dissent (the rule of RC squared: for every Roger Casement, there is also a Roy Cohn). 
Mainstream LGBT advocacy groups, having labored for years to remove “don’t ask, don’t tell” as military policy, were not about to embrace Manning—and why should they? After all, there is nothing specifically gay-lib about his heroic security breach. When a conclave of former grand marshals of San Francisco Pride anointed Manning a leader of this year’s parade, the decision was immediately overturned by the parade’s board, which could not resist adding a denunciation of the young soldier to demonstrate its loyalty to Washington. A hope dashed, but why should the queer establishment be held to a higher standard than other liberal elites who have turned their backs on Manning? 
After all, the transgression of this soldier is far greater than being a freethinking queer in the military. Private Manning actually believed that Operation Iraqi Freedom would be about Iraqi freedom. He thought he should be a well-informed citizen soldier, and he thought civilians should know the truth about the war that was being fought in their name. 
Leaks Are Good for Security
The personal history of Private Manning will leave many indifferent, but there are other reasons to support him—for instance, that small matter of national security. It has been casually assumed that leaks constitute a security threat, but in truth it’s the national habit of pathological overclassification that has yielded so many foreign policy disasters. Indeed, government secrecy, distortion and lies were necessary catalysts for the invasion of Iraq, as for the invasion of South Vietnam a generation before. Publicly accessible intelligence, unbowdlerized by spin doctors and legal departments, is a useful preventive measure against multitrillion-dollar wars that yield no strategic gain along with their charred rubble and mangled flesh. That a high degree of governmental openness is necessary to avert public disaster is not some new idea dreamt up at Julian Assange’s kitchen table. James Madison wrote two centuries ago that “a popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps both.” This should not sound like a radical slogan in the year 2013. 

The Law Is a Ass
But Private Manning broke the law—and the law is the law! This folk tautology ought to be airtight, but it carries a whiff of desperation, of depleted authority on the verge of meltdown. It turns out that selective enforcement of military law is pervasive. Sexual assault is rarely punished. Laws against killing foreign civilians are worth even less: just ask the Marine unit that killed twenty-four Iraqi civilians in Haditha, some of them execution style, without any of the soldiers serving time in prison (the leader of the unit suffered only a reduction in rank and a pay cut). The law in these instances may be many things, but it is not a prescriptive rule enforced evenly and impartially. And yet the request for clemency in the case of Bradley Manning is treated as an outrageous and whiny exception, which if granted would bring about the collapse of all military discipline. 
The laws against releasing classified material are just as elastic. Barely a week goes by without The New York Timesor The Washington Post spilling government secrets. This complaisant nonenforcement of leaks is nothing to complain about: after all, it’s how we learned the truth about—to name just a few salient examples from recent history—Vietnam, Watergate, warrantless wiretapping and the cyberwar against Iran.
There is a proper response to the hypocritical and dysfunctional inconsistency of our secrecy laws, and that would be the swift declassification of some 99 percent of our state secrets (government documents are classified at the rate of about 1.83 million per week), with real security for the tiny remainder of legitimate secrets (nuclear launch codes, for example). And for the record, neither Julian Assange nor Bradley Manning has ever called for “total transparency,” a straw-man position often attributed to them by the self-important guardians of extreme government secrecy. 
Instead of more open government, we are getting more secrecy, more prosecutions of whistleblowers and the altogether creepy “insider threat” program, which requires officials to report on the infosec failings of colleagues or face prosecution. (This institutionalization of mutual suspicion is not limited to national security organs but extends to agencies like the Education Department and the Social Security Administration.) Progressives who naïvely believe the solution is more congressional oversight should note that many in Congress have been pushing for even more leak probes and harsher prosecutions than the president. 
Obama has launched eight prosecutions based on the Espionage Act of 1917—more than all previous presidents combined, who together have managed only three such trials. Maybe he feels he has nothing to lose, since this clampdown placates the national security apparatus and wimp-proofs his right flank, while those who care about civil liberties were probably not going to vote Republican anyway. As a result, the former constitutional law professor who ran as the whistleblowers’ best friend in 2008 is now their scourge
It would take great powers of imagination to blame any part of our recent military debacles on leaks and whistleblowers. If someone had leaked the full National Intelligence Estimate on Saddam Hussein’s alleged weapons of mass destruction, would more people have decided—like then-Senator Bob Graham, who voted against the invasion after reading the unredacted report—to oppose the war before it began? If the Afghan War logs had somehow come out during Obama’s months of deliberation before escalating that conflict, would he have made the same decision—one that has yielded only thousands more civilian and military casualties? 
But it is Bradley Manning we have put on trial, not the impresarios of war, not the CIA torturers or their lawyers. The Iraq War, which began with a lurid overture of secrecy and lies, is now getting its dissonant coda: a private court-martialed for telling the truth, a trial unfolding behind a thick wall of official secrecy, in which the court’s media center was, on the day of the prosecution’s closing statement, patrolled by armed soldiers peering over the shoulders of typing reporters. “Pfc. Manning was not a humanist. He was a hacker,” said prosecutor Maj. Ashden Fein. “He was not a whistleblower. He was a traitor.” The past decade has witnessed the carnage unleashed by militarized cluelessness. In the story of Bradley Manning, who has been the ethical citizen and who the rampaging criminals?
Don’t miss Greg Mitchell, also following the Bradley Manning case. His latest post tracks the reaction to the verdict, as the trial’s sentencing phase begins.

Chase Madar
Chase Madar
Chase Madar is a civil rights attorney in New York and the author of The Passion of Bradley Manning: The Story behind...

Also by the Author

A handy myth-stripping guide to NSA surveillance and its whistleblower.
Bradley Manning’s leak was as difficult as microwaving popcorn. What does this mean?



OR Books

The Passion of Bradley Manning


By Chase Madar
"As this fine and important study reports, Bradley Manning holds to the principle that 'it's important that the public should know what its government is doing.' Release of the Wikileaks documents has been a courageous and important service to this cause. Those who regard democracy as a value to be cherished should agree with the author that Manning deserves the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and that his atrocious treatment by the authorities should be harshly condemned, and ended." —Noam Chomsky on The Passion of Bradley Manning
"The Passion of Bradley Manning reminds us that it was James Madison himself who wrote that a popular government without popular information is but a prelude to tragedy or farce. Author and lawyer Chase Madar tells a great story that raises critical questions about the appropriate balance of government secrecy and national security in a modern democracy." —Anthony D. Romero, Executive Director, American Civil Liberties Union
"The mistreatment, trial, and fate of Private Bradley Manning will undoubtedly read like an obituary on the Obama years. His case is a crucial one. Essayist and lawyer Chase Madar turned his sharp eye on it early. His will be the single must-read book on the case." —Tom Engelhardt,
"Chase Madar has written a powerful, compelling and moving defence of Bradley Manning. He shines a spotlight on government secrecy, duplicity and human rights abuses, and how one young man (allegedly) sought to let the US people know the truth about what the government was doing in their name. Bravo!" —Peter Tatchell, human rights campaigner


paperback: $15/£10
ebook: $10/£7
print + ebook: $20/£14




The United States vs. Pfc. Bradley Manning



Drawing and writing in real time from inside the courtroom, artist and WikiLeaks activist Clark Stoeckley here captures first-hand the extraordinary drama of The United States vs. Pfc. Bradley Manning, one of the most important and secretive trials in American history.
In the course of the trial, Private Manning insists that his release of the Iraq and Afghanistan war logs to WikiLeaks was an act of conscience, justified by the urgent need to reveal to the world the atrocities committed by the US military in the ostensible cause of freedom. At the prosecution table, military lawyers for the American government seek to set an example and discourage future whistle blowers by locking away Manning for decades, possibly the rest of his life.
Stoeckley’s vivid sketches from inside the court and beyond, together with carefully selected transcripts of the proceedings, trace the arguments as they move back and forth between the defence and the prosecution. His rendering of the trial provides both a vital record and a uniquely compelling read.
Publication October 2013 • 140 pages, fully illustrated in black & white • ebook with color illustrations
Paperback ISBN 978-1-939293-27-5 • Ebook ISBN 978-1-939293-28-2



·                                 Obama's One-Way Mirror

Government can see us through it, but we can't see what it does in our name, with our tax dollars. Manning trial is latest example.
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Contents of #1

Courage to Resist Fund

Deserves Medal of Freedom

Whistleblower and Revolutionary

UN Investigator

Misclassified to Justify Torture

Law Professors Protest

Contents of #2

Manning Support Network

Amy Goodman: World Contexts

Quigley:   Manning, Solitary Confinement, Occupy

Courage to Resist Supporting Manning

Michael Moore: Manning Started Occupy

Judge Challenges Prosecution Secrecy


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Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)