The decisions that I made in 2010 were made out of a concern for my country and the world that we live in. Since the tragic events of 9/11, our country has been at war. We’ve been at war with an enemy that chooses not to meet us on any traditional battlefield, and due to this fact we’ve had to alter our methods of combating the risks posed to us and our way of life.

I initially agreed with these methods and chose to volunteer to help defend my country. It was not until I was in Iraq and reading secret military reports on a daily basis that I started to question the morality of what we were doing. It was at this time I realized in our efforts to meet this risk posed to us by the enemy, we have forgotten our humanity. We consciously elected to devalue human life both in Iraq and Afghanistan. When we engaged those that we perceived were the enemy, we sometimes killed innocent civilians. Whenever we killed innocent civilians, instead of accepting responsibility for our conduct, we elected to hide behind the veil of national security and classified information in order to avoid any public accountability.

In our zeal to kill the enemy, we internally debated the definition of torture. We held individuals at Guantanamo for years without due process. We inexplicably turned a blind eye to torture and executions by the Iraqi government. And we stomached countless other acts in the name of our war on terror.

Patriotism is often the cry extolled when morally questionable acts are advocated by those in power. When these cries of patriotism drown our any logically based intentions [unclear], it is usually an American soldier that is ordered to carry out some ill-conceived mission.

Our nation has had similar dark moments for the virtues of democracy—the Trail of Tears, the Dred Scott decision, McCarthyism, the Japanese-American internment camps—to name a few. I am confident that many of our actions since 9/11 will one day be viewed in a similar light.

As the late Howard Zinn once said, “There is not a flag large enough to cover the shame of killing innocent people.”

I understand that my actions violated the law, and I regret if my actions hurt anyone or harmed the United States. It was never my intention to hurt anyone. I only wanted to help people. When I chose to disclose classified information, I did so out of a love for my country and a sense of duty to others.

If you deny my request for a pardon, I will serve my time knowing that sometimes you have to pay a heavy price to live in a free society. I will gladly pay that price if it means we could have country that is truly conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all women and men are created equal.

— Bradley Manning
First, your honor, I want to start off with an apology…I’m sorry that my actions hurt people and I’m sorry that it hurt the United States. I understood what I was doing and the decision that I made. I’m sorry for the unintended consequences of my actions…When I made these decisions I believed I was going to help people, not hurt people.

Bradley Manning, statement at trial

Who the fuck is he apologizing to?

(via priceofliberty)

It’s hard to judge a man’s actions and words while his life hangs in the balance but fuck this hurts. I wish he’d just fucking own it and tell everyone to fuck off. 

Then again, I’m not facing 100 years in naked, cold, dark solitary confinement. 

Bradley Manning’s still going to spend a long, long, long time in a max security prison where they make his life a living hell. But at least they aren’t going to kill him… legally.

Russell Brand takes over the Morning Joe, teaches the hacks some manners. 

Pay attention as Russell staqrts to bring up Snowden and Manning and the msNBC crew quickly try to shift the conversation to focus on Russell’s accent and Russell calls them out on their “superficial” bullshit. 

I’ve always liked his brand of comedy but I’m starting to love him as he gets more politically active. 

Thank you, Robert Murphy, for sharing this. 

thefreelioness:

vincenzof:

Whether or not you agree with what Bradley Manning did, the fact that he’s been in jail for over 1000 days should give you pause when talking about what the government would and wouldn’t do to its citizens.

The cherry on top is that he spent 10 months in solitary confinement, and multiple US and UN officials have said that his treatment during that time was inhumane.  

Here’s the sad part about all of this; Manning is a member of the military and they have their own courts and sometimes their own laws and processes.

Here’s the impossibly disgusting part about that; Obama and Congress have declared all of America a battleground, meaning that maritime law, the same laws that apply to Manning, can, in theory, be applied to all of us. 

Regardless of how you feel about Manning and his actions, you should be absolutely terrified of the actions of the government.

Welcome to unconstitutional hell. 

Obama wants to redistribute wealth but don’t you dare try to redistribute information. 

Obama wants to redistribute wealth but don’t you dare try to redistribute information. 

voluntaryistmormon:

tsjr1704:

Spc. Jeremy Morlock admitted to the murder of unarmed Afghan boy Gul Mudin (depicted here). He was only 15 years old. They lined him against a wall and ordered him to stand still before they shot him. Pfc. Andrew Holmes cut off his pinky as a memento. Morlock admitted that this wasn’t the first time he murdered civilians. According to him, soldiers in his Platoon “[threw] candy out of a Stryker vehicle as they drove through a village [and shot] children who came running to pick up the sweets.” The Pentagon worked for months to get these pictures deleted and suppressed. He was recently sentenced to 24 years in prison.
Private Bradley Manning, horrified at the war crimes unfolding around him, reported them to higher authorities in his chain of command. When they told him to keep quiet about it he published the details of the crimes to the public. He is facing the death sentence. Is there something wrong here?

I think there just might be!

Who is Bradley Manning and what did he do to face the death penalty? 
I’d say Bradley Manning is ten times the war hero Chris Kyle was but then I’d be multiplying by zero. 
Edit: Guys, I know who Manning is. Thanks. Also, it looks like prosecutors have said that they won’t seek the death penalty, but Manning is eligible to receive such a judgement. 
 

voluntaryistmormon:

tsjr1704:

Spc. Jeremy Morlock admitted to the murder of unarmed Afghan boy Gul Mudin (depicted here). He was only 15 years old. They lined him against a wall and ordered him to stand still before they shot him. Pfc. Andrew Holmes cut off his pinky as a memento. Morlock admitted that this wasn’t the first time he murdered civilians. According to him, soldiers in his Platoon “[threw] candy out of a Stryker vehicle as they drove through a village [and shot] children who came running to pick up the sweets.” The Pentagon worked for months to get these pictures deleted and suppressed. He was recently sentenced to 24 years in prison.

Private Bradley Manning, horrified at the war crimes unfolding around him, reported them to higher authorities in his chain of command. When they told him to keep quiet about it he published the details of the crimes to the public. He is facing the death sentence. Is there something wrong here?

I think there just might be!

Who is Bradley Manning and what did he do to face the death penalty

I’d say Bradley Manning is ten times the war hero Chris Kyle was but then I’d be multiplying by zero. 

Edit: Guys, I know who Manning is. Thanks. Also, it looks like prosecutors have said that they won’t seek the death penalty, but Manning is eligible to receive such a judgement. 

 

(via thefreelioness)

usgi:

Fuck him.

Why fuck him?

usgi:

Fuck him.

Why fuck him?

antigovernmentextremist:

talkstraight:

enemyofthestatist:

Free speech is as illusory as the “just enforcement” of the “laws” of this country. Murder is murder. Period.

When was Bradley Manning ever tortured?  If anyone actually believes that I have a bridge to sell you.

Solitary confinement for 7 months and I heard reports that he was forced to be naked for much of that. I also read that they forced him to be strip searched regularly by female officers to humiliate him (because he’s gay).

From the beginning of his detention, Manning has been held in intensive solitary confinement.  For 23 out of 24 hours every day — for seven straight months and counting — he sits completely alone in his cell.  Even inside his cell, his activities are heavily restricted; he’s barred even from exercising and is under constant surveillance to enforce those restrictions.  For reasons that appear completely punitive, he’s being denied many of the most basic attributes of civilized imprisonment, including even a pillow or sheets for his bed (he is not and never has been on suicide watch).  For the one hour per day when he is freed from this isolation, he is barred from accessing any news or current events programs.  Lt. Villiard protested that the conditions are not “like jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole,” but confirmed that he is in solitary confinement, entirely alone in his cell except for the one hour per day he is taken out.
Just by itself, the type of prolonged solitary confinement to which Manning has been subjected for many months is widely viewed around the world as highly injurious, inhumane, punitive, and arguably even a form of torture.  In his widely praised March, 2009 New Yorker article — entitled “Is Long-Term Solitary Confinement Torture?” — the surgeon and journalist Atul Gawande assembled expert opinion and personal anecdotes to demonstrate that, as he put it, “all human beings experience isolation as torture.”  By itself, prolonged solitary confinement routinely destroys a person’s mind and drives them into insanity.  A March, 2010 article in The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law explains that“solitary confinement is recognized as difficult to withstand; indeed, psychological stressors such as isolation can be as clinically distressing as physical torture.”

And remember he hasn’t been convicted of anything yet.

People are both blind and bias. America is us and Afghans are them, the terrorists. I can understand that, to a degree. I just don’t get the blind defense of someone who clearly lost it and killed multiple people as opposed to condemning another for realesing info in the hopes of ending an illegal war. 

antigovernmentextremist:

talkstraight:

enemyofthestatist:

Free speech is as illusory as the “just enforcement” of the “laws” of this country. Murder is murder. Period.

When was Bradley Manning ever tortured?  If anyone actually believes that I have a bridge to sell you.

Solitary confinement for 7 months and I heard reports that he was forced to be naked for much of that. I also read that they forced him to be strip searched regularly by female officers to humiliate him (because he’s gay).

From the beginning of his detention, Manning has been held in intensive solitary confinement.  For 23 out of 24 hours every day — for seven straight months and counting — he sits completely alone in his cell.  Even inside his cell, his activities are heavily restricted; he’s barred even from exercising and is under constant surveillance to enforce those restrictions.  For reasons that appear completely punitive, he’s being denied many of the most basic attributes of civilized imprisonment, including even a pillow or sheets for his bed (he is not and never has been on suicide watch).  For the one hour per day when he is freed from this isolation, he is barred from accessing any news or current events programs.  Lt. Villiard protested that the conditions are not “like jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole,” but confirmed that he is in solitary confinement, entirely alone in his cell except for the one hour per day he is taken out.

Just by itself, the type of prolonged solitary confinement to which Manning has been subjected for many months is widely viewed around the world as highly injurious, inhumane, punitive, and arguably even a form of torture.  In his widely praised March, 2009 New Yorker article — entitled “Is Long-Term Solitary Confinement Torture?” — the surgeon and journalist Atul Gawande assembled expert opinion and personal anecdotes to demonstrate that, as he put it, “all human beings experience isolation as torture.”  By itself, prolonged solitary confinement routinely destroys a person’s mind and drives them into insanity.  A March, 2010 article in The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law explains that“solitary confinement is recognized as difficult to withstand; indeed, psychological stressors such as isolation can be as clinically distressing as physical torture.”

And remember he hasn’t been convicted of anything yet.

People are both blind and bias. America is us and Afghans are them, the terrorists. I can understand that, to a degree. I just don’t get the blind defense of someone who clearly lost it and killed multiple people as opposed to condemning another for realesing info in the hopes of ending an illegal war.