Tag Archives: Bradley Manning

Statement on WikiLeaks release of US diplomatic cables

Wikileaks LogoYesterday evening WikiLeaks made their complete archive of US diplomatic cables available to the public. This publication appears to have been precipitated by an unintentional leak of a file containing the same material, involving one of their media partners. A statement from WikiLeaks explained the shift in approach, away from selectively publishing redacted cables over a period of several months:

“Revolutions and reforms are in danger of being lost as the unpublished cables spread to intelligence contractors and governments before the public.”

PFC Bradley Manning remains imprisoned at Fort Leavenworth in retaliation for being the alleged whistle-blower who provided these cables to WikiLeaks. After over 15 months in detention, he is still awaiting military trial. His legal team is preparing for a round of pre-trial hearings that could begin as early as next month.

Conversations that have been attributed to Bradley Manning suggest that the intent of releasing documents to WikiLeaks was to allow journalists the ability to explore evidence of wrongdoing in order to stimulate reforms and debate.

Whomever provided these documents to WikiLeaks would have expected the same sort of confidence, as any source, for the material to be handled with care. Regardless of whether a former WikiLeaks staffer or a media partner was ultimately responsible for breaking this confidence, our focus remains on using this information to help level the playing field for those struggling against injustice around the world.

Just this week, previously unavailable evidence of illegal behavior and other critically important information has emerged from this material. A cable from Beijing reveals that China’s rapidly expanding nuclear power sector is utilizing old technology that leaves reactors dangerously vulnerable to otherwise avoidable meltdown. Another cable from Baghdad provides details about the execution of Iraqi civilians, including children and infants. This information should never have been withheld from the public domain.

We will not relent in our demand that the Obama administration drop all charges against PFC Bradley Manning, and not only because of the unlawful pre-trial punishment he has endured. If Bradley Manning is indeed the source of these revelations, he should be given a hero’s welcome home for his courage in standing up for justice and government transparency.

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Alan Moore: “What is presently on trial here is Western culture itself”

“With any legitimate trial of whistle-blower Bradley Manning still being at an unspecified date in the future, it would seem that what is presently on trial here is Western culture itself. When the persecution of an individual who has exposed an evil is pursued so ruthlessly and yet the evil itself is studiedly ignored, all of us know that there is something very wrong with the way that our society is conducting itself. And if we do not protest in the strongest terms about what is being done in our name, then we become complicit. There is no third option. Bradley Manning and others like him everywhere are vital to our continued moral health and well-being as a people, and unless we offer them our full support in their often dire and isolated circumstances, it is we, as a people, who will end up the losers.”

Alan Moore

Northampton, August, 2011

Next London Meeting this Thursday 4th August

We’ll be meeting again in central London this Thursday evening — full details follow below.

If you can’t make it to the Plough, please consider joining us online at the following link:

https://02.chat.mibbit.com/?server=irc.chatspike.net&channel=%23ukfriendsbm&nick=

(If you use an IRC client, you can find us here: irc.chatspike.net:6697 #ukfriendsbm).   We meet online daily at 9pm UK time (8pm GMT).

 

***UK Friends of Bradley Manning***

***RSVP:***

Please reply to ukfriendsofbradleymanning@gmail.com
Or subscribe at: http://www.ukfriendsofbradleymanning.org/

***When***
THIS Thursday 4th August From 7:00pm (til 10:00pm)

***Where***
Upstairs at The Plough
27 Museum Street, London, WC1A 1LH

***Tube:***

Holborn

***Map***
http://bit.ly/lUALYZ

UK Friends of Bradley Manning meet for an informal plenary this Thursday,
4th August from 19:00.

If you have thought about getting involved in the campaign or just want
to find out more about Bradley Manning then please join us!

See you there!

***RSVP:***

Please reply to ukfriendsofbradleymanning@gmail.com
Or subscribe at: http://www.ukfriendsofbradleymanning.org/

London meetup flyer

Join us at the Plough, Holborn this Thursday

Next London Meeting this Thursday 28th July

We’ll be meeting again in London this Thursday evening – full details follow below.  If you can’t make it to the Plough, please consider joining us online here (irc.chatspike.net:6697 #ukfriendsbm).   We meet daily at 9pm UK time (8pm GMT).

***UK Friends of Bradley Manning***

***RSVP:*** Please reply to ukfriendsofbradleymanning@gmail.com
Or subscribe at: http://www.ukfriendsofbradleymanning.org/

***When***
THIS Thursday 28th July From 7:00pm (til 10:00pm)

***Where***
Upstairs at The Plough
27 Museum Street, London, WC1A 1LH

***Tube:*** Holborn

***Map***
http://bit.ly/lUALYZ

UK Friends of Bradley Manning meet for an informal plenary this Thursday,
28st July from 19:00.

If you have thought about getting involved in the campaign or just want
to find out more about Bradley Manning then please join us!

See you there!

***RSVP:*** Please reply to ukfriendsofbradleymanning@gmail.com
Or subscribe at: http://www.ukfriendsofbradleymanning.org/

London meetup flyer

Join us at the Plough, Holborn this Thursday

Next London Meeting this Thursday

***UK Friends of Bradley Manning***

***RSVP:*** Please reply to ukfriendsofbradleymanning@gmail.com
Or subscribe at: http://www.ukfriendsofbradleymanning.org/

***When***
THIS Thursday 21st July From 7:00pm (til 10:00pm)

***Where***
Upstairs at The Plough
27 Museum Street, London, WC1A 1LH

***Tube:*** Holborn

***Map***
http://bit.ly/lUALYZ

UK Friends of Bradley Manning meet for an informal plenary this Thursday,
21st July from 19:00.

If you have thought about getting involved in the campaign or just want
to find out more about Bradley Manning then please join us!

See you there!

***RSVP:*** Please reply to ukfriendsofbradleymanning@gmail.com
Or subscribe at: http://www.ukfriendsofbradleymanning.org/

London meetup flyer

Join us at the Plough, Holborn this Thursday

Quantico: We Still Need the Full Facts

Bradley Manning was moved from the Quantico marine brig at the end of April after many months spent in a particularly severe form of solitary confinement. That his conditions have now improved does not in any way reduce the need for the breaches of his rights that occurred at Quantico to be investigated and for appropriate redress to be made.

Last month the US Navy provided its formal response to the charge that Bradley was put under suicide watch for inappropriate reasons back in January. Despite the fact that the then Commander of the Quantico brig, James Averhart was removed from his post as soon as information about what had happened came to light, Juan M. Garcia, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, decided that Averhart had not “exceeded his authority” in the way he dealt with the case. As both the fact of Averhart’s departure and the confused, panicked way in which it was effected are highly suggestive of wrongdoing being discovered and hurriedly acted upon, this decision was a little surprising.

Today, Politico have revealed details of an internal Quantico review from February. It is worth noting that Politico have met with considerable obstruction on the part of the Marine corps in their attempts to access this report; indeed, their first two Freedom of Information Act requests were rejected, and the subject of two successful appeals to Navy officials to have those requests reinstated.

The information that Quantico have been keen to keep hidden is that, in his report dated 23 February, Chief Warrant Officer Abel Galaviz found that Averhart and his colleagues had broken Navy rules by not removing Bradley from suicide watch status “immediately” when a medical officer recommended this course of action:

“Once the medical officer’s evaluation was provided to brig staff, steps should have been taken to immediately remove him [Bradley Manning] from suicide risk, to a status below that”

Galaviz’s report mentions two separate periods in which Bradley was not removed from suicide watch quickly enough: in January 2011, it took three days for Quantico to implement a medical recommendation and in August 2010 Bradley spent a full five days under unnecessary suicide watch. This means that, in both cases, medical personnel advised almost immediately that putting Bradley Manning under suicide watch was not appropriate.

Colonel Daniel Choike rejected these findings in his response of 1 March 2011, only to advise that, as soon as it was announced that Bradley was leaving Quantico, on reflection the brig should in fact update its procedures so that such incidents do not happen in future:

“If a medical officer determines that a detainee is no longer considered a suicide risk, that finding is binding on the PCF staff and the detainee shall be removed from suicide risk.”

This week, UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan Mendéz issued a second rebuke to the US Government for not allowing him to have an unmonitored meeting with Bradley Manning, as customary rules would warrant:

“… I need to ascertain whether the conditions he [Bradley Manning] was subjected to for several months in Quantico amounted to torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. For that, it is imperative that I talk to Mr. Manning under conditions where I can be assured that he is being absolutely candid.”

It is now abundantly clear that the US Navy is not capable of reviewing the actions of its own personnel and submitting to public oversight, even where those actions have generated wide concern at home, abroad and within the US administration itself.  In light of this domestic failure, Juan Mendéz must now be allowed the access he needs to carry out his investigation into Bradley’s treatment, which includes full and confidential access to Bradley himself, without delay.

Update

The Bradley Manning Support Network have issued a press release, which includes the following statements:

“The memos revealed today by Politico confirm that military officials repeatedly violated their own standards of detainee treatment while PFC Manning was held in abusive pre-trial confinement conditions at the Quantico brig.  Commander Averhart should never have been put in a position to reject the military’s investigation into his own unprofessional conduct,” said Kevin Zeese, an attorney with the Bradley Manning Support Network.  “Justice demands that the charges against PFC Manning be dropped, because the government has acknowledged that they have abused the rights of a soldier in their custody.”
“President Obama can no longer hide behind his subordinates in claiming that the treatment of PFC Manning has met ‘basic standards’ of conduct,” added Jeff Paterson, a co-founder of the Bradley Manning Support Network.  “Clearly, by the government’s own admission, the treatment of PFC Manning has fallen far short of the standards demanded by the Constitution.”

RevolutionTruth: an Open Letter to Bradley Manning

RevolutionTruth Bradley Manning campaign

We are thrilled that citizen-driven media project RevolutionTruth have decided to launch a campaign in solidarity with Bradley Manning. This is their second major campaign, following a hugely successful appeal for Wikileaks, which has now resulted in the production of a short film that includes contributions from around the world (as well as from a US film director of note). A further film on Bradley Manning will be forthcoming and has the full support of this campaign and the Bradley Manning Support Network: we encourage you to sign the open letter and submit your video message.

Bradley,

We hope that this letter finds you healthy and strong. You have already seen adversity that most people do not bear in a lifetime, and we are sadly aware of the hardships you face. We are sending this letter to you in the hopes that our feelings of support may help you to bear these days. We want you to know that we, people all over the world, are fighting for you. We can gladly say that we are many.

Your case has become a great symbol to all of us. It has bound us together in an awareness of our shared interests, shared responsibilities, and shared fate. There is much that we do not know, but irrespective of the truths of your particular case, your flag has become the standard of an indefatigable civil movement, straddling generations and borders, striving inexorably against the great injustices of our time, for which the injustices you suffer are the tragic emblem. Your tenure in that small prison cell has reached across the world, moving many people, ushering a generation to awareness and action. Your name is on all our lips, and your face, for us, is an icon of moral courage.

You stand accused of upholding justice when her bearers let her banner fall. You are accused of actions that no law should rightly prohibit while remaining law. When the law is turned against conscience and courage, it is turned against itself. Our society has lost its way.

Your prosecution under this ruse of justice is already written into history as a persecution, not of one man, but of us all. It is not a single injustice, but an injustice to end the pretense of justice. It is unique and urgent. It is wrong that you suffer, while those who committed the crimes that were exposed, who started a horrific and unjustifiable war based on lies, are excused. Whether you did what you are accused of or not, what you have gone through since your arrest would be unimaginable for most of us. You are a hero among us. We cannot, and will not, turn away from supporting you.

We are keenly aware of your sacrifice. Be strong for us, Bradley, because we know that you suffer as one of us, for us. We will be relentless in our efforts to see justice done by you. Accept our fellowship, and know this: you are forever ours now and we salute you, and forever thank you.

We hold you in our hearts. We stand with you.

We are all Bradley Manning.
Your brothers, sisters, friends,

The undersigned.