John Whitehead writes: From Jesus Christ to Julian Assange: when dissidents become enemies of the State.
And Kevin Gosztola on the Justice Department charging Assange with computer crime, but alleging conspiracy to abet espionage.
I had written quite a bit about WikiLeaks and the Bradley/Chelsea Manning leaks a while back. And there are many 2010-2014 news and opinion articles online that talk about “Bradley” Manning, not “Chelsea.” (There may very well be some people who have been trying to research this case and might be missing articles from that period because they might be searching “Chelsea Manning.” I just thought I’d mention that.)
These past posts and articles of mine give some good information (if you don’t mind my saying so), for those who might not have been that familiar with this whole affair. They especially address the Press abandoning the important role of exposing the corruption and crimes of TPTB, and the problem some people have in their believing the lies of the government against whistleblowers, and believing the gubmint’s propaganda.
In this October 24, 2010 post, I wrote:
Glenn Greenwald writes on today’s “Nixonian henchmen”: The New York Times and CNN as the “Establishment Media,” smearing WikiLeaker Julian Assange in the same way that President Nixon’s “Plumbers” smeared Daniel Ellsberg as punishment for his leaking the Pentagon Papers to the New York Times. While in 1971, officials of the government broke into a journalist’s psychiatrist’s office to get private information with which to do the smearing, now it is a journalist’s fellow journalists doing the smearing on behalf of protecting the government from public disclosure over its own criminality, deceit and war crimes associated with the Iraq War.
This is further confirmation that the jounalists of today are shills for the illicit State, and not the finders and tellers of news and truth that they’re supposed to be.
And this is CNN and the New York Times, mind you, so-called “liberal” media. Whatever happened to the anti-Iraq War crowd in the media from 2004 and those Dan Rather types? Do these “liberal” news media elites who hated Bush for Iraq now love Iraq for Obama?
Meanwhile, NYT and CNN aside, Fox News seems to be covering Assange with at least some balance and fairness, and at least some lack of smearing. (By the way, CNN ranks far behind in the cable wars, and the New York Times is just about ready to go out of business.)
If U.S. government officials from the president and generals on down to soldiers and contractors committed war crimes, let the truth be told. Don’t shoot the messenger — jail the criminals.
In the first part of this December 4, 2010 post, I wrote:
The coincidences between U.S. happenings and goings on in Israel never end. This situation with WikiLeaks and its latest release that exposes nincompoops like Hillary Clinton, and with neocon nudniks like Sarah Palin asserting that Julian Assange has “blood on his hands,” is very similar to the situation in Israel. A young female Israeli military clerk named Anat Kamm burned classified military information to CD as well as made copies of material in print and released that material to a Haaretz newspaper reporter, Uri Blau, who used the material to report on the military’s alleged crimes. In the words of Ms. Kamm,
“There were some aspects of the IDF’s operational procedures in the West Bank that I felt should be public knowledge…
“…When I was burning the CDs I kept thinking that history tends to forgive people who expose war crimes…”
Kamm is not charged with espionage on behalf of another government, but she is charged with compromising Israel’s security. It’s very similar to the current situation with WikiLeaks. The Israeli media by and large is the propaganda organ for the government and military, just as our Fourth Estate here in the U.S. has become with the U.S. government. Thomas Jefferson is throwing up in his grave right now over this.
The Haaretz reporter Uri Blau had been in hiding in London, but had recently come forward for interrogation, but I don’t know whether or not he’s been charged.
But as British journalist Jonathan Cook put it,
“During her conscription, Kamm copied possibly hundreds of army documents that revealed systematic law-breaking by the Israeli high command operating in the occupied Palestinian territories, including orders to ignore court rulings. She was working at the time in the office of Brig. Gen. Yair Naveh, who is in charge of operations in the West Bank.
“Blau’s crime is that he published a series of scoops based on her leaked information that have highly embarrassed senior Israeli officers by showing their contempt for the rule of law.”
In other words, the two are really accused of embarrassing government officials, and exposing their transgressions, just as Julian Assange and Bradley Manning are accused of with U.S. officials. But while this was initially going on several months ago, you just wouldn’t believe the hatred and venom toward those two Israelis in comments sections of various Israeli newspaper articles and opinion columns.
The worse of it, in my opinion, has come from Jerusalem Post columnist Caroline Glick, who also has some things to write this week about WikiLeaks.
“Make no mistake about it, the ongoing WikiLeaks operation against the US is an act of war.”
Only a fool could actually think that Julian Assange’s releasing information that the American people have a right to know about what their government has been doing on their behalf could be an “act of war.” A fool, or someone who is so absorbed in the power of the State, so mindlessly mystical of the State and its military that any act by someone that is in the slightest way challenging of the State’s authority and integrity (which is not difficult — what integrity?) is to the State and its apparatchiks an “act of war.”
Glick also refers in that column to Kamm and Blau that Glick feels should be investigated for “treason,” yet it is our treasonous governments whose decades-long campaigns of aggression provoke people in other countries and have gravely backfired against us Americans, as well as against Israelis
In this December 28, 2010 article on the treasonous U.S. government, I wrote:
Some critics of the WikiLeaks release have referred to Manning’s alleged actions as “treasonous,” and compromising American security. But in actuality, the leaked documents have done nothing but expose the crimes of the State, which is what the Press used to do before that institution apparently merged itself into the State apparatus. The real “treason” that is happening is that of the agents of the State acting against Americans’ liberty and prosperity.
While the recent document leaker has not compromised America’s security in any way whatsoever, we can take a closer look at how the U.S. government’s agents just over the past 20 years have been the real culprits in compromising the security of Americans. That includes President George H.W. Bush’s taking the U.S. into war against Iraq in 1990-91, the U.S. government’s and United Nations’ sanctions against Iraq throughout the 1990s and how those hostilities against Iraqis have backfired against the U.S., and George W. Bush’s “War on Terror” campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq and against Americans’ civil liberties.
And, last but not least, in this September 4, 2013 article, I wrote (among other things):
In more recent years, there have been the NSA and IRS scandals, constant FBI and other federal S.W.A.T. raids on the wrong house, the FBI thwarting terrorist plots that the FBI themselves cook up, FBI entrapments, and so on.
My, how the Fulbright Hearings, the Watergate Hearings, the Church Committee, the Tower Commission and other similar efforts at reform certainly have succeeded!
Let’s have more reform!
And now Army PFC Bradley Manning, a.k.a. Chelsea Manning – who was given a kangaroo trial administered by an extremely biased judge – has been railroaded into a 35-year sentence on top of time already served in a tortured solitary confinement.
But Manning didn’t “betray his country” or commit actual espionage on behalf of any foreign enemy. Military and security experts had testified that none of the information Manning gave to WikiLeaks had posed any danger to any American or U.S. soldier overseas.
Another military whistleblower, retired USAF Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski has pointed out that there have been actual spies, Robert Hanssen, Aldrich Ames, James Hall, and George Trofimoff, who actually did sell secrets to foreign regimes such as Russia but who had been treated much more humanely by the U.S. government than Manning was treated.
You see, Manning felt it was important to inform the American people of the war crimes and diplomatic buffoonery committed by our own government.
Manning’s “crime” was of having a moral conscience, and of embarrassing and angering our corrupt and criminal Rulers who didn’t like their criminality and incompetence exposed for all the world to see.
That is part of the cult of self-serving State authority that we have now.
It is amazing how the campaign to mislead and propagandize – led by U.S. government officials and repeated by their Press stenographers – has turned actual government whistleblowers into “bad guys” in the eyes of many misinformed and gullible people, from the very beginning of the WikiLeaks documents releases and the Manning witch hunt.
At the very beginning of the Manning witch hunt, in June 2010, Glenn Greenwald wrote about the FBI informant who had turned Manning in to the government, Adrian Lamo, and on Lamo’s relationship with Wired senior editor Kevin Poulsen. At that time, Wired had published only a partial version of the chat logs between Manning and Lamo.
Greenwald wrote a subsequent update to that, in which it turned out there had been quite some relationship between Wired’s Poulsen and informant Lamo, that Lamo had been the government’s one and only source against Manning, and Greenwald noted the “journalistic disgrace” in Wired’s withholding of key information from other news reporters on the Manning case.
And Greenwald wrote a further update after Wired had published the full Manning-Lamo chat logs.
We must ask: Were Poulsen and Wired withholding information from other journalists to help the government project a false narrative of why Bradley Manning released documents to WikiLeaks? You can read those articles and make your own conclusions.