Moral Outrage
Whew! God help us!

Army Specialist Bradley Manning

The US Army is still holding Specialist Bradley Manning incommunicado in Kuwait, under charges of leaking to WikiLeaks a video of Apache helicopter pilots gunning down two Reuters cameramen and a number of Iraqis in a Baghdad neighborhood.

WikiLeaks has arranged for three pro-bono lawyers to assist Manning in his case. However, Manning must request for them to see him. Since the Army will not inform Manning of their existence, he cannot ask for them to see him. A perfect Catch 22.

Manning is part of a strong tradition of soldiers who conclude in their conscience that they cannot morally remain silent on the nature of the war they have been sent to fight. One Iraq vet told me he lost confidence in the war he was fighting once he realized, in his attitudes and actions against the Iraqi people, he was becoming the tyrant he thought he was sent there to fight.

Manning’s action follows precisely the arc Joseph Campbell describes in his famous book Hero With a Thousand Faces of the young warrior who leaves home to descend into Hell, where he learns something and then returns to impart that knowledge to his people.

The military understands this very well, which is why it has to be so harsh with someone like Manning. It is why our leaders so feared the antiwar soldiers movement back in the days of the Vietnam War.

First and foremost, our soldiers need to protect themselves and their comrades, but they also need to understand they serve more than just our generals.

From an article by John Grant

4 Responses to “Army Specialist Bradley Manning”

  1. Update: US Army Pfc Bradley Manning, who is accused of leaking military files to Wikileaks, has been transferred to a base in the US. The US Army said on Friday that Pfc Manning, 22, had been moved from Kuwait to Quantico Marine Base in Virginia, where he will be held pending trial.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Newshour program, Wikileaks founder Julian Assange said: “One must consider why the Pentagon is focusing on the hypothetical blood that it says might be on our hands – although there is no evidence of that – compared to the 20,000 lives that have been lost in Afghanistan that are documented and exposed by our material.”

    He said his organization had tried hard to reduce the possibility of harm occurring and had sought to engage the White House in its efforts to vet the material before it was released. He has pledged to continue document releases.

  2. […] lawyers were looking at whether WikiLeaks pressed or encouraged army intelligence analyst Pfc. Bradley Manning to leak the Afghan war logs after the army private provided the group with a classified Iraq video. […]

  3. […] U.S. Marine brig in Quantico, Virginia for five months — and for two months before that in a military jail in Kuwait. Some describe Manning’s conditions as cruel and inhumane treatment and, by the standards of many […]

  4. […] Bradley Manning, a 22-year old Army private, believed he saw war crimes being committed by the U.S. military and shared the information so the American public could know what the armed forces were doing. The most famous leak from Manning showed an Apache Helicopter attack by the U.S. military killing a dozen civilians and wounding two children. […]

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