blow the whistle, face life in jail: progressives slam verdict in Manning case

the US government will come after you, no holds barred, if you’re thinking of revealing evidence of its unlawful behavior’, says Amnesty – Published on Common Dreams, by Jon Queally, staff writer, July 30, 2013.

… Though some found solace in the fact that the 25-year-old US Army whistleblower was found “not guilty” on the “most outrageous” charge of “aiding the enemy,” voices across the progressive community were expressing mixtures of outrage and sadness after Judge Col. Denise Lind found Manning guilty on 19 other counts that could lead to a sentence of more than 100 years in prison.   

The Center for Constitutional Rights put out a statement, which read in part:

While the “aiding the enemy” charges (on which Manning was rightly acquitted) received the most attention from the mainstream media, the Espionage Act itself is a discredited relic of the WWI era, created as a tool to suppress political dissent and antiwar activism, and it is outrageous that the government chose to invoke it in the first place against Manning. Government employees who blow the whistle on war crimes, other abuses and government incompetence should be protected under the First Amendment.

We now live in a country where someone who exposes war crimes can be sentenced to life even if not found guilty of aiding the enemy, while those responsible for the war crimes remain free. If the government equates being a whistleblower with espionage or aiding the enemy, what is the future of journalism in this country? What is the future of the First Amendment?

Manning’s treatment, prosecution, and sentencing have one purpose: to silence potential whistleblowers and the media as well.

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange issued a long response which included this assessment of the case: … //

… (full long text).

Part 2: Nationalism as the Last Stage of Communism.

Links:

Manning Verdict Risks Freedom of the Press if the People Do Not Act, on Dissident Voice, by Kevin Zeese, July 31, 2013;

Interview with polish dissident Adam Michnik: we are bastards of communism, Part 1, on Spiegel Online International, interview conducted by JAN PUHL, MARTA SOLARZ and CHRISTIAN NEEF, July 31, 2013 (Photo GalleryTranslated from the German by Christopher Sultan): Adam Michnik is editor-in-chief of Poland’s leading daily and its most prominent former dissident. In a SPIEGEL interview, he talks about the threat of authoritarian regimes in Eastern Europe, the decline of the region’s political culture and feelings of being treated like second-class citizens in Europe …;

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