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All the WikiLeaks Fit to Print

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Posted on Apr 26, 2011
AP / Mark Lennihan

By Robert Scheer

There is a craven disconnect between the eagerness of leading editors to exploit the important news revealed by WikiLeaks and their efforts to distance themselves from both the courageous website and Bradley Manning, the alleged source of documents posted there. Alleged is required when referring to the Army private so as not to repeat the egregious error of a constitutional-law-professor-turned-president who has already presumed Manning guilty of crimes for which he is not even formally charged.

“He broke the law,” President Barack Obama said of Manning by way of countering his own supporters at a San Francisco fundraiser who dared question the conditions of Manning’s imprisonment. Conditions that Human Rights Watch challenged as “extremely restrictive and possibly punitive and degrading.” Manning was transferred last week to a Kansas prison from Quantico, Va., where for months he had been subjected to shackling, forced nudity, isolation and other harsh treatment—all of which was justified by the government as necessary to prevent him from committing suicide. Clearly the feds were trying to break the man. 

Why indeed is Manning the one behind bars and not the government officials who kept hidden unpleasant truths about this nation’s policies that the public has a right to know? And why do leaders of our constitutionally protected free press now seek to distance themselves from news sources that have performed a great public service? A service documented by the fact, as tallied by The Atlantic magazine, that more than half of the issues of The New York Times this year have carried stories that relied on WikiLeaks’ disclosures.

That is the case with the latest batch of releases. A New York Times editorial on Tuesday titled “The Guantanamo Papers” states that the newly leaked documents are “a chilling reminder of the legal and moral disaster that President George W. Bush created” at the U.S. prison in Cuba but does not credit Manning or WikiLeaks as the source. Instead the editorial refers to a Sunday New York Times front-page news story headed “Classified Files Offer New Insights Into Detainees.” While conceding that WikiLeaks originally obtained the documents, the paper insists they were “provided to The Times by another source.” But shouldn’t we then conclude that WikiLeaks and its alleged source deserve immense credit for revelations about the Guantanamo operation that, as the Times news story put it, resulted in “laying bare the patchwork and contradictory evidence that in many cases would never have stood up in criminal court or a military tribunal”?

To date there has been no evidence that the leaks seriously compromised U.S. national security, and the information involved was of the lowest level of classification. Here, too, Obama was wrong when he insisted that there is something indelibly clear and sacrosanct about the classification of government secrets, when in fact the rules are ill-defined and routinely violated by government officials interested in using secret data to buttress their policy arguments. It was nonsense for the president to state “I have to abide by certain rules of classified information” when he doesn’t. Rules of classification derive from presidential executive orders, and the president has the authority to declassify on the fly, as is convenient to his purpose. Obama misspoke when he said: “If I was to release stuff, information that I’m not authorized to release, I’m breaking the law. … We’re a nation of laws. We don’t individually make our own decisions about how the laws operate. … He [Manning] broke the law.”

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But that is often what whistle-blowers do in breaking the procedural rules of their organization, private or government-affiliated, to expose a more serious infraction on the part of the organization. That is what Daniel Ellsberg did in releasing the Pentagon Papers documents detailing an official but secret history exposing the justification of the Vietnam War as a blatant lie. The Pentagon Papers carried a far higher security classification than the material Manning allegedly released.

The WikiLeaks material has been far more useful than even the Pentagon Papers in revealing government impropriety involving regimes throughout the world, and the result has been a more aroused public and greater accountability, be it from officials in Egypt or the United States. If this constitutes a crime, it has to date not been shown to be anything but a victimless one, and the net effect of the publication of this material has been to let the public in on information it has every right to know. It is obvious that Manning is being punished because government officials don’t like to be shown to be so deeply in the wrong.

That was the view of former State Department spokesman Philip J. Crowley, who resigned after daring to speak the truth about the mistreatment of Manning, labeling his detention “ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid.” It is all that, and it is high time that the media that confirmed the value of the WikiLeaks information defended the rights of the whistle-blowers who by challenging the code of official secrecy let the public in on the real story.

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s book,
“The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street.”


Keep up with Robert Scheer’s latest columns, interviews, tour dates and more at www.truthdig.com/robert_scheer.



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By Matt Spencer, May 18, 2012 at 1:50 am Link to this comment

I think that many of the leaks by Wikileaks if sent to print will cause a huge furor, and I am saying this because most people do not actively go and search and read up on what has been leaked. If the press published these, people would have more awareness.

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By LocalHero, April 29, 2011 at 1:47 pm Link to this comment

Redhorse, I always thought you were a clear-thinking,
level-headed fellow but your call for a “new President”
is, well, just plain silly.

Each & every president is the warden of the prison and,
if they’re not sufficiently lobotomized, they’re
assassinated and the next sociopath takes over.

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By SteveL, April 28, 2011 at 8:42 pm Link to this comment

“Alleged is required when referring to the Army private so as not to repeat the
egregious error of a constitutional-law-professor-turned-president who has
already presumed Manning guilty of crimes for which he is not even formally
charged.”

Allegedly tortured?

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By ChaviztaKing, April 28, 2011 at 6:46 pm Link to this comment

http://www.xs4all.nl/~sm4csi/nwo/MindControl/mind_control_index.htm <—DEAR FRIENDS, READ THIS FREE BOOK ON HOW THE SATANIC ZIONIST DARK FORCES THAT RULE THIS WORLD EXERCISE MIND-CONTROL ON THEIR VICTIMS. YOU HAVE TO REALIZE THAT MOST AMERICANS ARE MIND-CONTROLLED BY TV, THAT’S WHY THEY HATE MARXISM AND SOCIALISM. BECAUSE OF THEIR MIND-CONTROLLED ARGUMENT THAT CLAIMS THAT THEY CAN BE AS RICH AS BILL GATES UNDER THE ZIONIST CAPITALIST FREE MARKET SYSTEM

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By ChaviztaKing, April 28, 2011 at 6:22 pm Link to this comment

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dI0walQqLsA <—TOM MORELLO from Rage Against The Machine says that the USA is turning into a totalitarian satanic prison, just like Nazi Germany, where people go to jail for small misdemeanors

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By george szabo, April 28, 2011 at 5:46 pm Link to this comment

Get with the programme…. The true dirty little conspiracies, manipulations,and
deals with the so called “enemy” are not kept on file or written about. Just as the
big crime wheelers and dealers keep track of things on little bits of paper till the
main players are all informed and have stuff memorized, then the papers are
burned. A low tech but effective way of communications between parties. Then
they keep so called official Secret files and documents, that strangely happen to
show up at publication houses, or Wikki Leaks…. The select few that run this
totally corrupt world do not keep records   DUH Smarten up you bunch of
naive do godders…...  George—- King of the World….

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By Ma Joad, April 28, 2011 at 3:33 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Now we have to endure the likes of “Mack”....so bitter, so jaded, so above it all….give us all a break and start your own blog.

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By Ma Joad, April 28, 2011 at 11:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Another absolutely brilliant column by Robert Scheer, the likes of which I have seen NO WHERE ELSE! As usual, however, so many of the comments here totally ignore the topic and go off on personal political agendas which have zero connection to Manning and Wikileaks.

In the midst of so much media hypocrisy, we are so fortunate to still have a real journalist like Robert Scheer point out uncomfortable truths.

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By ChaviztaKing, April 28, 2011 at 10:31 am Link to this comment

Dear friends, what I would like to say in this comment is related to Wikileaks and freedom of expression, freedom of ideas and freedom of speech in many of the progressive alternative news sites.  Many progressive news sites and its discussion debate forums, have a strong dictatorial censorship and strong coercive moderation and are very partizan.

Progressive websites like Commondreams http://www.commondreams.org the former progressive news site (Now a right wing zionist site) The Huffington Post http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ is more dictatorial than Bush and Hitler and the right-wing site The Nation Magazine is also very abusive, dictatorial and anti-democratic, anti-liberty, anti-freedom, anti-open debates of battles of different ideas.

There can be no freedom and democracy in the USA as long as tons of progressive alternative websites who hate the GOP and The Tea Party, are so dictatorial, to suit their classist, elitist agenda.

And commondreams.org is a hardcore right-wing website, they ban you if you post some Marxist article or if you talk about 9-11.  So i don’t understand why there is so much censorship in the progressive news websites.

No wonder Julian Assange and Bradley Manning have been crushed and destroyed in the internet and in the world, with millions of humans who are still in the bridge between the ape and the human.


.
.

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By drklassen, April 28, 2011 at 9:54 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama is a national security *coward*.  As are ALL the Dem leadership.

They promised that they could do something about Bush’s abuses of power if only we’d give them the majority in the mid-terms.  We did.  They caved.

Obama promised to filibuster and vote against the vast expansion of FISA—-he did neither.  And the Dem’s in general praised the legislation that give Bush ex post facto legality to do what he’d been doing illegally.

Obama promised to end all the abuses of power and be the most open and transparent government.  He now fully embraces all the Bush power grabs and is just as secretive.

Cowards all.

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By sallysense, April 28, 2011 at 6:07 am Link to this comment

when representatives of a government rely on a system of deception to get things done… it’s that deceptive system itself which should be its citizens’ biggest fear!...

(among various calls to the white house… the following verse was left for the president)...

each time news brings things of unfairness from big shots…
and more lives and resources lay wasting away somewhere…
may your conscience be the wikileaks inside your own mind!...
to either expose to you a hypocrite or show a human who cares!...

white house switchboard… 202-456-1414

white house comment line… 202-456-1111

whenever our country is not led by the truth… it gets headed deeper into the wrong direction!...

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By gerard, April 27, 2011 at 8:14 pm Link to this comment

Mike789:  Sorry not to get back to you sooner on this statement of yours:  “It may be that Manning’s disclosures are not directly of strategic value, but taken with other data may add up to something that would jeopradize a national policy and/or mission effectiveness.”

As regards “jeopartizing a national policy and/or mission effecgiveness.”  Secrecy and obfuscation are the mortal enemies of democratic governments.  If “the people” don’t know what is going on, they are robbed of their opportunity and responsibility to govern themselves and have a meaningful impact on their (secret) government.

In addition to that disadvantage, secrecy concerning sleazy tactics (bribery, deceit etc.)revealed in the Leaks ruins a nation’s reputation at the same time it erodes the general morality of diplomats and has a negative impact on diplomats from other nations.

So long as secrecy is unquestioned and rules international politics behind the scenes, we are all doomed to eternal misunderstandings, the manipulation of powers beyond our control, and uotimately wars.

The great thing about the Leaks is that they offer the American people a chance to learn enough about what is being done in their name to self-correct errors and shoddy behavior.  The question now is, are the American people wise enough and brave enough to take the responsibilities that the Leaks have opened up. 
 
So far, there are strong indications that many would prefer to remain ignorant and don’t want the responsibility of citizenship.  And those at the top are too stupid to take advantage of this golden opportunity. It is indeed discouraging to know that those who reveal important truths are punished instead of rewarded.  A sure sign of authoritarianism.

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By Textynn, April 27, 2011 at 7:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Joan of Arc was told that, “Not a man will follow you.” referring to the dangerous undertaking of her cause. To which JOAN replied, “I will not look back to see.”

This is the kind of bravery we can attribute to Bradley Manning.  And after his heroic deed, the controllers of all and what-is-allowed are treating him the same.

The people must not let this happen.  The MSM is a fat unsavory whore and her days in the sun are over. Notice them not and shun their memory.

Obama, history will not treat you kindly concerning this matter. No, not at all.

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By ChaviztaKing, April 27, 2011 at 6:34 pm Link to this comment

SuperMike: true, i don’t understand how can many people still read that newspaper

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By SuperMike1661, April 27, 2011 at 4:57 pm Link to this comment

Seriously. The NY Times is in a hyper-intense political and commercial bind.

As the paper’s financials flame-out, The Guardian and WSJ aggressively skim its left and right-wing readerships.  Its traditional political allies… especially moderate business owners and increasingly militant supporters of Israel… relentlessly lobby the paper’s Management for more aggressive, post-911 “national security” postures.

This is the most stressful test of the Sulzburger dynasty, and the family recognizes that it is approaching its Waterloo.

Is it any surprise that its apparent death rattle is less than operatic?

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By ChaviztaKing, April 27, 2011 at 4:35 pm Link to this comment

DEAR FRIENDS WHO HAVE BEEN FOLLOWING THE ABDUCTION CASE OF HOLLY BOBO IN PARSONS, TENNESSEE AND OTHER CASES OF ABDUCTIONS OF CHILDREN AND WOMEN IN THE USA

I think that Holly Bobo was a victim of an organized kidnapping abduction and women exploitation cartel linked to very powerful oligarchs of The Republican Party, that abducts beautiful women in the USA and in other countries, brainwashes them (erases their memories), change their identities, and after the girl is totally brainwashed and their identity changed with new passports, new social security, the girl is then mind-controlled into a a prostitute and sex machine.  And then they are literally sold to super rich corporate elites, oil lords, drug smugglers and very very rich oligarchs.

I hope that i am wrong, and that Holly Bobo returns safely.  But unfortunately this is what i think happened to her.

This world is doomed, most corporate governments and its ruling oligarchic classes of this world are very corrupt and psychopaths.  And the people of this world are victims of all these corrupt crimes of drug smuggling, corporate crime and abductions.

The problem i see is that average american joes and janes still trust unconditionally the US government, even with Julian Assange digging out the truths of the high levels of corruption and crimes done by US government against the people of this world


.


.

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By ChaviztaKing, April 27, 2011 at 4:33 pm Link to this comment

Dear friends, there are corruption problems within the Venezuelan Socialist Government. And the main enemy of socialism is corruption.  That’s what destroyed USSR. Read this article about corruption within the Venezuelan government: http://www.rebelion.org/noticia.php?id=127218&titular=el-estado-burocratizado-e-infiltrado-erosiona-la-revolución-


.

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By Gary Mont, April 27, 2011 at 3:18 pm Link to this comment

If, as I suspect, the federal government secretly declared a state of war on 9/11, the detention of prisoners at Gitmo, military tribunals, lack of Habeus Corpus and the incarceration of B. Manning without either charges being laid or proof of his guilt offered, are all perfectly legal actions.

The war measures act allows all such actions.

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By REDHORSE, April 27, 2011 at 3:16 pm Link to this comment

WE need mass demand that all political campaigns be financed with tax dollars at an equal rate w/State and National debates that include all candidates. Remove the ability to buy public office and remove the swine. It is the only possible approach to power WE hold for a return to American Democratic principals. Obama is simply a “cooler” for anti-human corporate policy as any President elected under current circumstances will be.

    Likewise, it is a mistake to ignore the reality of the worldwide domino collapse of natural ecosystems, GCC and exponential population growth. The super rich are as vulnerable as the poor. You can’t pay armed thugs to protect you if your money is worthless. The final collapse of American Democracy will doom the rich and the poor. The desperate machinations of the rich we witness today are as futile as those clinging to Monarchy two centuries ago. For better or worse WE have ALL crossed the line of demarcation and entered an as yet undefined age of action, consequence and peril. Though answers remain obscure the questions attached now define our lives.

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By Gary Mont, April 27, 2011 at 3:14 pm Link to this comment

PatrickHenry:The issue of PFC Bradley Manning needs to become an election issue as Obama is the only one who can intervene and stop the injustice.

—-

Then Pfc B. Manning is as good as dead already.

Obama does not take orders or suggestions from the America Public and your vote matters not one whit as to who holds the office of POTUS - GWBush proved that very nicely.

Pfc Manning must be held up to the rest of the military as an example of what will happen if you question anything you’re ordered to do, or worse, blow the whistle on any officially sanctioned criminal activities.

Obama will keep the position of POTUS until his corporate owners find someone better, or until he has served his maximum allowable terms in office.

... unless they do away with the maximum number of terms any one man may be POTUS, that is….

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By RayLan, April 27, 2011 at 3:07 pm Link to this comment

I wish the Right would extend its dogged cynicism about government to the military and realize that it is corrupt to the core, about as fair as an 800 lb gorilla. After all the military is an arm if ‘the’ arm of the government.

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By PatrickHenry, April 27, 2011 at 2:09 pm Link to this comment

The issue of PFC Bradley Manning needs to become an election issue as Obama is the only one who can intervene and stop the injustice.

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By ardee, April 27, 2011 at 1:23 pm Link to this comment

I’d like to side with Manning from a humanitarian standpoint, but the idea that a Pfc. should be making decisions at a strategic level is simply crazy.

Well, Mike789, April 27 at 9:17 am I think that at the military level you would be absolutely correct. But Manning made his decision as a good citizen of a supposedly free nation.

It seems to me that there was a trial at a place called Nuremburg once upon a time wherein the defense that, “ve vas only following orders” ( in a thick German accent if you please) resulting in convictions and some hangings.

I do not have the honor of knowing Bradley Manning but I suspect that he knew he was going to jail and his love for his nation trumped his fear of incarceration.

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By Gary Mont, April 27, 2011 at 12:47 pm Link to this comment

Pavlov’s Dog:He does, however, appreciate you because the more you diss on him, the more moderate he appears to the clueless, TV watching centrist voters that are his “base.”

—-

You’re still laboring under the popular delussion that the vote has any bearing on the (s)election of any public official in the USA.

Once you get past this myth, everything will begin to make a lot more sense.

Obama, like Bush, was placed in office by - not We the Little People, but They the Important People - the bankers and mafiosa that have bought out your Top 500 Corporations and Insurance companies with the half century of tax free capital they’ve taken in from the federally protected drug war.

Sure you’re still allowed to cast your vote, but only because nobody is bothering to catch it, let alone count it any more.

The only vote that counts is the vote by the board of directors of the Incorporated State of Amerika.

“If Voting was Effective, it would be Illegal.”

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By Gary Mont, April 27, 2011 at 11:32 am Link to this comment

I have to wonder what legal issues they are trying to avoid, by moving Manning to another prison before they “suicide” him.

Its obvious that the whole “prevention of suicide” precaution set they have been pretending to follow - nakedness, being woken every five minutes - was specifically designed to initiate the notion that Manning was suicidal.

The only reason to make this seem apparent to the public, is to provide an alibi for the military when Manning is “discoverd hanging”, dead in his cell.

Is there some legal benefit for the military if Manning commits “assisted suicide” in a civilian prison instead of a military prison?

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By Kris Ockershauser, April 27, 2011 at 11:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thanks for always speaking in support of uncomfortable truths.

And, congratulations on the Izzy Award… so well deserved.

Kris

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By Ed Lytwak, April 27, 2011 at 11:22 am Link to this comment

The only voters that matter to Obama are the one that watch TV - the more the better.  And, Obama only cares about them to the extent that the plutocratic money and main stream media can manipulate them.  Sadly, he doesn’t care a wit about radical or progressive voters who get their information from alternative internet news sits like Truthdig.  He does, however, appreciate you because the more you diss on him, the more moderate he appears to the clueless, TV watching centrist voters that are his “base.”

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By CenterOfMass, April 27, 2011 at 11:11 am Link to this comment

@REDHORSE “A turd is a turd. We need a new President.”

Yeah, that about sums it up.

Rahm Emmanuel once criticized some usually-Democratic-leaning organizations for threatening to withhold support for Obama.  The word he used was “retarded”.

I happen to disagree with him.  The only voter who matters is the unpredictable voter.  That’s the only voter that anyone in Congress or the White House cares about.  That’s the only voter who actually has any kind of voice.  To be predictable is to be irrelevant.

Therefore, let the politicians worry.  It makes them more attentive.

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By Not One More!, April 27, 2011 at 11:11 am Link to this comment

Free Bradley Manning, and free him now.

If only we had John Lennon or John Sinclair, both who were on the receiving end of government persecution, who would speak out eloquently and publicly about this national disgrace.

http://www.NotOneMore.US

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By glider, April 27, 2011 at 10:51 am Link to this comment

“Why indeed is Manning the one behind bars and not the government officials who kept hidden unpleasant truths about this nation’s policies that the public has a right to know?

Yes, this is the big story that needs to be discussed nationwide.  It would be except for the fact that we live under the dark shadow of corporate approved “news”.  The next big war I suspect will be for government control of available internet content.  The U.S. government has made the decision to not reform itself and to defy the truth of these exposures.  It has doubled down on keeping the people ignorant and compliant.  The only option the “government” has in this case is to attack the growing counter culture of information distribution on the internet so that it is compatible with corporate totalitarianism.  For those of us that want reform in the long haul this is what needs to be fought on the defensive side.

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By REDHORSE, April 27, 2011 at 10:23 am Link to this comment

The open lie and illusion is the purview of grifters. Mr. Scheers anger at the New York Times is righteous (as is our own). With the help of a corrupt Washington and President O., Wall Street has turned America into its personal piggy bank. The American economy and the lives and futures of the people are being looted and destroyed—that’s a fact. The 2008 oil shortage was manufactured by Wall Street thugs just like the $5.00 gas at the pumps today. The perps walked free.

  We are only as powerless as we allow ourselves to be. Though the moral bankrupts who feed, control and maintain the propagandist lie represent an infected wound we as a people are far from terminal. We do have American truthspeakers and journalists and many in our government possess the moral courage to stand for what is right. Though we are far from home we are far from lost. Emotional kneejerk shock at the antics of swine is is a luxury we can no longer afford. A turd is a turd. We need a new President.

    Our only way back short of open revolt is public State and National campaign finance reform to remove cash from politics. It can be done.

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By Ed Lytwak, April 27, 2011 at 10:19 am Link to this comment

Even if we put aside Obama’s hypocrisy and complicity in committing and covering up war crimes, it is Bradley Manning’s action that are THE legal response.  International law, including the laws that U.S. used to condemn and hang Nazis for waging unjustified wars of aggression, – the same kind of wars perpetrated by the Bush and Obama regimes - have clearly affirmed that it is a soldier’s “legal” duty to disobey unlawful orders.  Military orders classifying these documents as “secret” were an unlawful attempt to cover up war crimes and obstruct justice.  By exposing the truth Bradley Manning was following his legal obligation to disobey illegal order that cover up war crimes.

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By uncleray, April 27, 2011 at 9:51 am Link to this comment

I’m afraid that we are now in a permanent state of war.
It is a shame that Manning is in jail for exposing
the truth while the government works feverishly to
hide it.
George Orwell’s 1984 was off by 20 years or so
but he was still right.

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By DigThis, April 27, 2011 at 9:35 am Link to this comment

Mike789 wrote:
“...It may be that Manning’s disclosures are not directly of strategic value, but taken with other data may add up to something that would jeopradize a national policy and/or mission effectiveness.

I’d like to side with Manning from a humanitarian standpoint, but the idea that a Pfc. should be making decisions at a strategic level is simply crazy.”

Let’s keep something clear:  Manning leaked embarrassing information that has exposed hypocrisy, lies and potentially criminal acts of individuals that are supposed to be working for us. 

The fact is that no one, PFC or otherwise, should have to leak information in the first place.  We shouldn’t need whistleblowers, but we do.  History has shown us that without them, deceptions continue and grow with time.  What minimum level would you say is needed to qualify as an “acceptable” whistle blower?  General officer?  Sec of Defense?  There is no such thing as an authorized whistleblower.

Its not that easy for any one person to physically harm national security.  Not that it can’t happen, I’m just saying that there are fail-safe mechanisms in place designed to minimize that risk.  A PFC in the army is simply not going to have extensive access to highly classified information.  Something would be wrong with a system if he did. 

The point is that yes, Manning technically broke the rules, but that’s what all whistle blowers do.  Obama should declassify all info he leaked so that charges can be immediately dropped.

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By Ol' Jer, April 27, 2011 at 9:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The danger in speaking truth to power is that power can whop you upside the head—or worse, much worse.  In the case of Bradley Manning, it has done so, is doing so, with a vengeance.  Which, come to think of it, it the purpose.  Pity they won’t go after people who did something, not just technically illegal, but deeply wrong.

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By TDoff, April 27, 2011 at 9:06 am Link to this comment

If, one of these days, hopefully soon, We, the People of the US, decide we want to again become a democratic republic, enjoying the freedoms for individuals guaranteed by our Constitution and Bill of Rights, as our founders intended, we are going to have to first become a nation of law-breakers, as opposed to our purported ‘A nation under law’.
We have so perverted the original concept of the US of A during the past 2+ centuries, that many, perhaps most, of our laws and legal decisions would be ruled unlawful, illegal, by any judge or jury that was sane, moral, and just.
The decision that corporations, those figmental, eternal creations of unbridled amoral greed and power and wealth, should be treated as, and have all the rights of, human persons is just one example of our current travesty.
Incarcerating and torturing a truth-teller, a fact-revealer, who exposed the proofs that our government and it’s ‘leaders’ are lying, hypocritical self-serving monsters is another.
If the omelet we want is a fairer, more just, more moral nation of which we can be proud, we’re gonna have to break some eggs.

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By gerard, April 27, 2011 at 9:02 am Link to this comment

Thank you, Robert Scheer!

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By gerard, April 27, 2011 at 8:59 am Link to this comment

Aproright:  Try the London Guardian newspaper.

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By bpawk, April 27, 2011 at 8:48 am Link to this comment

Mainstream media are a little afraid of Wikileaks - Wikileaks - with its “truth in your face about the inner workings of your government” - makes them look like they get their info from handouts and that they are second hand news. Mainstream media are owned by big corporations who want to maintain the status quo albeit with a few ‘enlightening’ articles and critiques thrown in so as not to look too corporatist. I myself read a variety of left, centre, right newspapers/magazines - that way I can see how various news organizations slant the news. I feel I get a better picture of what’s going on.

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By tedmurphy41, April 27, 2011 at 8:10 am Link to this comment

Where, oh where, did investigative journalism go to?
It seems that the backbone went out of our free press not long after Rupert Murdoch polluted its corridors.
Will it ever regain its previous “independence”?
The answer is NO, seeing that it was never independent or free.

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By drbhelthi, April 27, 2011 at 8:03 am Link to this comment

Mike789: “I’d like to side with Manning from a humanitarian standpoint, but the idea that a Pfc. should be making decisions at a strategic level is simply crazy.”

Perhaps, simply crazy for the ones behind the nazification of the U.S.A., who installed a being into the office of the U.S.President, which being has not been able to publish a valid U.S. birth certificate, one basic requirement of the U.S. Constitution.

A being who promised all things to the “poor people,” who has delivered no things to the poor people, and all things to his “handlers,” the corporations they own and their pimp-servants, general officers in the U.S.Military.
Talk about “simply crazy” decision-making ? ! 

On the basis of his currently-discussed, patriotic behavior, PFC Manning´s decisions would have been more constitutionally-correct, thus superior to the decisions made by his alleged “superior” officers. As a born American, he would also be a more constitutionally-correct fit in the Office of the U.S.President, than the current imposter.  Which, is perhaps one reason for the attempts to torture and drug him into psychosis. 

Envy and torture of a born American who behaves patriotically, WILL NOT produce a valid, American birth certificate for a man whose loving old Grandma said was born in Kenya.  Which loving, old Grandma is no longer available to be queried.  Nor will it produce genuine college/university transcripts to replace the falsifications churned out by the C.I.A. Nor will it assist general officers to fulfill to Americans that which one general tried to provide; but, who was “removed” by the Pentagon debacle, the Cruise missile that struck the Pentagon and the subsequent explosion.

Strategic level decisions? Looking at what we´ve been stuck with since the NAZIs were secreted into the U.S. with Operation Paper Clip, 1946-1952, and the GHWBushSr entourage took over, American-born PFCs couldn´t possibly do a worse job.

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By aprohricht, April 27, 2011 at 7:51 am Link to this comment

The fact that we’re torturing one of our own within this country and the mainstream media has all but ignored this is absurd.
Bravo, Robert, for shining light on this issue.

As a side note, does anyone know where I can download the wiki-leaks safely or read them online?

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By berniem, April 27, 2011 at 7:44 am Link to this comment

America’s corporate press cares not for the truth or the welfare of American society. It’s sole purpose is to sell papers and it will print all manner of sensationalist nonsense to the point where the average reader is numbed to the extent that exposure of real outrage and criminalty by government is treated as just so much “ho-hum”. Proof of this is the distorted reality of Mr. Manning enduring totally illegal and immoral treatment for exposing murder, fraud, and other forms of national as well as international crimes by agents of this government with nary a peep from the masses in demand of explanation. Pitifully enough there is a sizeable segment of the population who support the government’s claims that it is he who has committed a crime and deserves punishment although no evidence of such has been aired in a court of law! Has the American educational system sunk so low that we can no longer read the “writing on the wall”?

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By DigThis, April 27, 2011 at 7:25 am Link to this comment

“Walk like and an Egyption”

We sit at keyboards and indulge ourselves with masturbatory ideation while our democracy is gasping for breath.  We type intellectual nuance in self congratulatory tones as people suffer and die; while our government lies to us as a matter of policy. 

We must protest loudly in the streets for Obama to declassify all the Manning-related Wikileaks files.  Now.  As citizens of the United States we had a right to know this leaked information in the first place.

Citizens must hold their government employees, contractors and elected officials personally accountable for their own actions.  Not by passively waiting in hopes that someone in the goverment will do what’s right.  It must be demanded in the streets. 

We must assume that government official already have a confession from Bradley Manning, and that draconian punishment for him is merely a matter of time.  The presumption of innocence and due process of law are meaningless concepts in a police state.  Its time for us to hit the streets.  Like the Egyptions.

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By eugene, April 27, 2011 at 7:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

For me, the line is clear.  The more political/financial power you have, the less the law applies.  If you’re truly powerful, you’re immune.  It has always been that way and always will be.  The lower classes are, simply, the ones to be punished and with the harshed treatment possible.  Many in the middle class love it.  Makes them feel vindicated for being such moral folks. 

I feel for Manning.  Nothing but a scapegoat for American anger.

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By madisolation, April 27, 2011 at 6:55 am Link to this comment

Mike789, you wrote:
“Where do we draw the line? It may be that Manning’s disclosures are not directly of strategic value, but taken with other data may add up to something that would jeopradize a national policy and/or mission effectiveness.”

The line should be drawn at the beginning, with those who conduct illegal and immoral acts. They are the ones who jeopardize national policy and mission effectiveness, whatever that means these days. The “national policy” seems to be advancement of political careers and the furtherance of corporate wealth. The “mission” seems to be to get young people to fight for corporate security in other parts of the world. It must be hard for those overseas to come to the conclusion that national security and the defense of the United States means defense of corporations and billionaire CEO’s who are screwing over their friends and family at home.

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By tomack, April 27, 2011 at 6:18 am Link to this comment

Ardee’s quote is appreciated ~ ““All truth passes through three stages; first it is ridiculed, second, it is violently opposed, and third, it is accepted as self-evident.” Arthur Schopenhauer

And then there’s the fourth stage: it is ignored or forgotten.

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By Jim Yell, April 27, 2011 at 6:02 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

All our problems that have become unsurmountable have done so because of a conceit that our elected and appointed officials can not be held accountable for the crimes they commit, where as powerless people can be treated any which why the self important wish. This totally contravenes the very basis and progression of our laws and country.

Why isn’t Cheney/Bush in jail for their outing of intellgence officer? Why was Nixon given a Pardon when what he did was illegal and completely un-necessary? Our laws are now being solely enforced for political gain, not for justice.

The whole idea of state secrets is a scam.

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By JoeT, April 27, 2011 at 5:59 am Link to this comment

This, then, must be Nixonian Democracy we are experiencing.

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By JJW, April 27, 2011 at 5:55 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Once can only laugh…. a nation of laws… coming from one who claimed it was necessary to move forward instead of addressing war crimes and crimes against humanity.

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Mike789's avatar

By Mike789, April 27, 2011 at 5:17 am Link to this comment

Ardee’s quote is appreciated ~ ““All truth passes through three stages; first it is ridiculed, second, it is violently opposed, and third, it is accepted as self-evident.” Arthur Schopenhauer

It may hold water in the socio-political sphere, however, some of us will accept the truth of scientific discovery when it’s proven.

Conflict arises when ethics and human action are at variance. Weighing the consequences of Mannings personal decision to countermand direct orders of confidentiality, with divulgence of truth on the other side of the fulcrum, has to take into account not simply the fact that secrecy is a necessary component when a nation’s self interests are not in line with an adversary’s or even an ally’s, but also a historic context of protocol wherein future factual or quasi-factual information is held for strategic advantage. A criteria (it may be debated what that criteria may be) has to be established.

Where do we draw the line? It may be that Manning’s disclosures are not directly of strategic value, but taken with other data may add up to something that would jeopradize a national policy and/or mission effectiveness.

I’d like to side with Manning from a humanitarian standpoint, but the idea that a Pfc. should be making decisions at a strategic level is simply crazy.

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By madisolation, April 27, 2011 at 4:32 am Link to this comment

Bravo, Mr. Scheer! Not only have our government officials—from the President on down—acted in a despicable manner, but our “free” press has long been propping up or ignoring the misdeeds of our government. Together they are responsible for the downfall of America. They have all failed us, and it is high time we expose them. Thank you for lending your voice.

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By exploitedtimes, April 27, 2011 at 3:36 am Link to this comment

Well said. Things may have been better for Manning had he kept the alleged acts of leaking to himself. Easier said than done to be sure.

Another point that occurs is that when the President says
“We don’t individually make our own decisions about how the laws operate. ”
But aren’t we after all a nation of individuals? To be celebrated? It would seem that along with our liberties and government transparency, any individual tendencies that stray from the police state mantra have also died a tragic death.

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By ardee, April 27, 2011 at 3:07 am Link to this comment

“It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate,tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds” Sam Adams

Thus the efforts of some, including some here in fact ( well, one in particular actually) to minimize and ridicule Wikileaks and its efforts to expose what is rancid and wrong in our government.

“All truth passes through three stages; first it is ridiculed, second, it is violently opposed, and third, it is accepted as self-evident.” Arthur Schopenhauer

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