FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Standing With Private Bradley Manning

by KEVIN ZEESE

The peace movement needs to stand with Bradley Manning and Wikileaks in their efforts to let Americans see the truth about what the military is doing in our name. We can handle the truth! Indeed, we need to hear the truth, not propaganda about how great the U.S. military is performing, in order to be responsible citizens.

The news from Afghanistan and Iraq is not good, but Americans are not even told all the news – especially when it includes abuses, even war crimes, committed by the U.S. military. The U.S. is supposed to have civilian control of the military, as President Obama recently demonstrated when he fired General McChrystal, but the people are supposed to be ultimately in charge in a representative democracy. We need to know the truth in order to do our job as citizens and hold elected officials responsible.

Those who oppose war and militarism need to stand with Bradley Manning, the 22-year old Army private, who 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 was the “Collateral Murder” video shared on the Wikileaks.org website. The video he reportedly leaked showed an Apache Helicopter attack by the U.S. military killing a dozen civilians and wounding two children.

Manning allegedly leaked hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables and emails that have yet to be published. He said that the documents showed horrible “crimes” and his goal in releasing them was to “hopefully [spark] worldwide discussion, debates, and reforms, if not . . . we’re doomed as a species.” His goal was for “people to see the truth… regardless of who they are… because without information, you cannot make informed decisions as a public.”

Now Manning is being held in custody in a prison in Kuwait, without access to private legal counsel facing 52 years in prison. The video he allegedly released started a much-needed discussion about the horrible truth about the killings that U.S. wars entail. He should be a national hero similar to whistle blowers like Daniel Ellsberg who exposed the truth of the Vietnam War. He deserves the support of the American people. Indeed, people like him should be getting medals and promotions, not people like General Stanley McChrysal (Cheney’s Assassin) and James N. Mattis (“sometimes its fun to kill people”).

Thankfully, the peace movement is starting to speak up for Private Manning. We need to see a massive campaign of support for Bradley Manning. Courage to Resist, Veterans Against the War (IVAW), Veterans for Peace and Courage to Resist, along with my organization Voters for Peace, have spoken out in support of Manning. So, people can now take action to support Manning. Here are some options:

– Write President Obama, with copies to to Attorney General Eric Holder and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates calling for the release of Private Manning and allowing him access to civilian legal counsel. Click here to act now.

– Sign the petition at World Can’t Wait in support of Manning. Click here now to act.

– Visit www.BradleyManning.org and sign their petition, write to Manning and let him know you appreciate his courage and doing what you can to release him.

These wars, fought with corporate mercenaries are killing civilians at very high levels and undermining U.S. security. Secrecy allows illegal actions to continue – in our name. The importance of citizens like Manning and organizations like Wikileaks becomes more evident when the behavior of the corporate media is noted. For example, The Washington Post’s David Finkel reportedly had possession of the Apache helicopter video two years ago but never released it to the public. Wars are able to hide behind the protection of a media that is too willing to not report their crimes. This is one example of many of corporate media cover-up that show the need for others to force transparency so the public knows what is being done in its name.

Let President Obama know you want to hear the truth. What is the U.S. military doing? Are prisoners being held without charges? Is torture continuing? How many civilians is the U.S. military killing? All these actions by the U.S. military are undermining our security. They are creating enemies for all of us.

Stand with Private Bradley Manning. Help to work for his release. He is a hero, not a criminal.

WORDS THAT STICK

?

 

Kevin Zeese is an organizer at Popular Resistance.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

April 27, 2017
Darlene Dubuisson – Mark Schuller
“You Live Under Fear”: 50,000 Haitian People at Risk of Deportation
Karl Grossman
The Crash of Cassini and the Nuclearization of Space
Robert Hunziker
Venezuela Ablaze
John W. Whitehead
Trump’s America is a Constitution-Free Zone
Ron Jacobs
One Hundred Years That Shook the World
Judith Deutsch
Convenient Untruths About “Human Nature:” Can People Deal with Climate Change and Nuclear Weapons?
Don Fitz
Is Pope Francis the World’s Most Powerful Advocate for Climate Stability?
Thomas Mountain
Africa’s War Lord Queen: The Bloodstained Career of Liberia’s Eleanor Sirleaf Johnson
Binoy Kampmark
Short Choices: the French Presidential Elections
Paul C. Bermanzohn
Monetizing My Mouth
Michael Barker
Of Union Dreams and Nightmares: Cesar Chavez and Why Funding Matters
Elier Ramirez Cañedo
“Let Venezuela give me a way of serving her, she has in me a son.”
Paul Mobbs
Cellphones, WIFI and Cancer: Will Trump’s Budget Cuts Kill ‘Electrosmog’ Research?
Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee
The Closing of Rikers: a Survival Strategy of the Carceral State
April 26, 2017
Richard Moser
Empire Abroad, Empire At Home
Stan Cox
For Climate Justice, It’s the 33 Percent Who’ll Have to Pick Up the Tab
Paul Craig Roberts
The Looting Machine Called Capitalism
Lawrence Davidson
The Dilemma for Intelligence Agencies
Christy Rodgers
Remaining Animal
Joseph Natoli
Facts, Opinions, Tweets, Words
Mel Gurtov
No Exit? The NY Times and North Korea
Alexandra Isfahani-Hammond
Women on the Move: Can Three Women and a Truck Quell the Tide of Sexual Violence and Domestic Abuse?
Michael J. Sainato
Trump’s Wikileaks Flip-Flop
Manuel E. Yepe
North Korea’s Antidote to the US
Kim C. Domenico
‘Courting Failure:’ the Key to Resistance is Ending Animacide
Barbara Nimri Aziz
The Legacy of Lynne Stewart, the People’s Lawyer
Andrew Stewart
The People vs. Bernie Sanders
Daniel Warner
“Vive La France, Vive La République” vs. “God Bless America”
April 25, 2017
Russell Mokhiber
It’s Impossible to Support Single-Payer and Defend Obamacare
Nozomi Hayase
Prosecution of Assange is Persecution of Free Speech
Robert Fisk
The Madder Trump Gets, the More Seriously the World Takes Him
Giles Longley-Cook
Trump the Gardener
Bill Quigley
Major Challenges of New Orleans Charter Schools Exposed at NAACP Hearing
Jack Random
Little Fingers and Big Egos
Stanley L. Cohen
Dissent on the Lower East Side: the Post-Political Condition
Stephen Cooper
Conscientious Justice-Loving Alabamians, Speak Up!
Michael J. Sainato
Did the NRA Play a Role in the Forcing the Resignation of Surgeon General?
David Swanson
The F-35 and the Incinerating Ski Slope
Binoy Kampmark
Mike Pence in Oz
Peter Paul Catterall
Green Nationalism? How the Far Right Could Learn to Love the Environment
George Wuerthner
Range Riders: Making Tom Sawyer Proud
Clancy Sigal
It’s the Pits: the Miner’s Blues
Robert K. Tan
Abe is Taking Japan Back to the Bad Old Fascism
April 24, 2017
Mike Whitney
Is Mad Dog Planning to Invade East Syria?    
John Steppling
Puritan Jackals
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail