- CRITTER TALK
- SCI/TECH/OTHER STUFF
It’s not about the importance of what he leaked, but that he leaked classified material at all to the press. The military has a chain of command and it is the accepted mechanism for bringing issues to the attention of superiors. If those at the top of the chain want the press to have this information it’s up to them to release it, at a time and place convenient to the service. Manning was part of the military machine. There are no individuals in the military paradigm.
When Manning joined the U.S. Army he committed to the Armed Forces of the United States, not to himself or his own agenda. If everyone in the military, with security clearances, working with classified information were allowed to release whatever they saw to the press, chaos would ensue, and America would be subject to attack by its many enemies. There’s a reason for the rules, and the military cannot have soldiers running off on their own making their own rules, any more than they can allow a sergeant stationed in Afghanistan to start opening fire on innocent civilians.
This young private first class is no hero. He’s a criminal and needs to pay dearly for his crimes, so that others get the clear message that this sort of behavior is not acceptable, and that it puts America’s security at risk and threatens its very integrity.
Bradley Manning passed classified documents to WikiLeaks because he wanted to “spark a domestic debate on the role of our military and foreign policy in general,” says a statement he’s hoping to read in court tomorrow. The statement, which prosecutors read segments of at a press event today, would be Manning’s first public explanation for his actions.
Prosecutors are arguing that it shouldn’t be allowed, because Manning would be admitting to “uncharged misconduct”—admitting he was trying to spark debate, for instance, could open Manning to a charge of trying to “discredit” the US military, NBC News reports.
The battle comes on the same day the Pentagon agreed to publish 84 previously secret rulings in the case, the Guardian reports. Some of the rulings had paradoxically been read in court in front of journalists, but hadn’t been published. One example: Yesterday, the judge read a ruling stating that Manning had not been denied his right to a speedy trial, despite years of pre-trial incarceration, the AP reports.
Military courts and civil courts differ in procedure, and there will be no sympathy vote for his youthful looks, only a cold, direct look at the evidence; an intense examination that will be final and conclusive. I look forward to the decision, as we all, included Manning, have waited far too long for that “day in court.”