Worldwide Protests Ahead of Bradley Manning’s Monday Trial

Thanks, G!

Huge prayers going out for Bradley Manning today. This brave young man is one of the big heroes of our time, a soldier who followed his conscience to report atrocities and attempt to end unjust treatment in an unjust war that has increased hostilities rather than “protected” us from them. For his courage, he has received imprisonment, solitary confinement and extreme persecution. As a true Warrior in the Ancient, spiritual sense of the word, Bradley Manning has taken a stand against corruption and evil, quietly holding his ground against incredible odds. May he find strength and support from us and the Otherworld!

Protesters march to call for the release of jailed U.S. Army Private Bradley Manning, a central figure in the Wikileaks case, outside the gates at Fort Meade, Maryland, June 1, 2013 (Reuters / Jonathan Ernst)

Worldwide Protests Ahead of Bradley Manning’s Monday Trial
End the Lie ~ June 2, 2013

Demonstrations are taking place all over the world in support of Bradley Manning, the US army private whistleblower who leaked intelligence to WikiLeaks.

Manning’s trail will start Monday at the Fort Meade military base in Baltimore, some three years after having been accused of the largest leak of classified materials in the history of the United States. Among other things, he has been charged with ‘aiding the enemy’ – which could potentially land him in jail with a life sentence without parole.

Already the stenographers who were meant to create daily transcripts of the trial have been denied press passes and will not now be at the trial.

The number of protesters at Fort Meade was over 3000 by Saturday with many of them shouting ‘We are all Bradley Manning!’ And globally, people are holding events in over 24 cities on four continents over the course of the weekend. Aside from American cities, people as far as Toronto, Berlin, Paris and even South Korea’s Seoul have joined in a chorus of support for Manning.

A number of high profile people have come out in support of Manning including Daniel Ellsberg, a former Department of Defense employee who leaked Pentagon papers during the Vietnam War. Ellsberg has said that Manning’s trail is one of the “defining issues of the 21st century” and believes that the “transparency and accountability of government are at stake”.

Protests Bradley

A protester leads chants as marchers call for the release of jailed U.S. Army Private Bradley Manning, a central figure in the Wikileaks case, outside the gates at Fort Meade, Maryland, June 1, 2013 (Reuters / Jonathan Ernst)

Manning, 25, was arrested in Iraq in May 2010, which followed an inquiry into the hundreds of thousands of State Department cables he had by then leaked. He had already entered a plea of ‘guilty’ for the charge of transmitting digital information, but that is a small fraction of the 21 counts the prosecutors are seeking to convict him on.

To put Manning away for life, the court would have to find evidence that he was associating with Al Qaeda and its partners in the region by transferring information to them directly.

RT spoke to human rights activist and writer Craig Murray, who drew attention to the way the politicians and media in the US were handling Manning’s case, which, in Murray’s opinion proves that the private’s actions had not had nearly the consequences he is being accused of.

“Nobody has been able to point to a single instance of anybody being harmed as a result of his disclosures. Nothing he has done in any away approaches the level of criminality of American soldiers who were deliberately shooting and killing soldiers in Iraq,” says Murray in disbelief, asking why they are not the ones on trial. And that is aside the point from what Manning has had to go through while in custody, before the trial even commenced.

The world will wait for up to three months before the final verdict is announced and we find out whether Bradley Manning will be put away for life.

One response to this post.

  1. This gives a good overview of the major implications the Manning trial has for freedom of the press in America … not that we have that much right now, but here’s an excerpt:

    “At issue is Manning’s trial. If found guilty on serious charges, “the prosecution will establish a chilling precedent: national security leaks may subject the leakers to a capital prosecution or at least life imprisonment.”

    “Anyone who holds freedom of the press dear should shudder at the threat that the prosecution’s theory presents to journalists, their sources and the public that relies on them.”

    Former Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black one said:

    “The guarding of military and diplomatic secrets at the expense of informed representative government provides no real security for our Republic.”

    What’s more destructive than imposing capital penalties or imprisoning heroic whistleblowers for life for doing the right thing.



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