Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
01-31-2012, 02:27 AM
RE: Glenn Greenwald's Salon expose of the Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & WikiLeaks affair
Quote:The defense also wanted to hear from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about the true sensitivity of the materials Manning is alleged to have leaked. Both requests were blocked by the government, but Manning's counsel may at least pursue a deposition from them instead.
All material was denoted as follows by xxxxxxxxxxxx as mentioned upthread:
Quote:xxxxxxxxxxxx will testify that on29 July 2010, he directed the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) to lead a comprehensive review of the documents allegedly given to Wikileaks and to coordinate under the Information Review Task Force (IRTF, formerly TF 725) to conduct a complete damage review. He will testify that the damage review confirmed that the alleged leaks represented a low to at best moderate risk to national security. Specifically, that all of the information allegedly leaked was either dated, represented low-level opinions, or was already commonly understood and know due to previous public disclosures.
The material was admittedly overclassified by some administration. What many want to know is if this material was only sent to Wikileaks. If so, either [A] Manning was an inside job OR [B] he was an idiot since he didn't distribute his findings to multiple sources OR [C] it was scrubbed from the net OR [D] The information was as accessible as it was to use as bait for Manning and/or the next dupe that came along for media and/or to set a legal precedent.
Next question, in lieu of the content of Manning's leak was that all that was copied onto those disks? Wikileaks (allegations/connections aside) admittedly filters content at their sole discretion.
The Guardian stated that the files on the Computer and those that Wikileaks released are an exact match to the files that Bradley Manning had in his proximal posession . The question here is whether or not the Guardian's source (the military ombudsman channel and wilileaks) can be legitimized.
Quote:Shaver said more than 700 Wget commands were run for files relating to Guantánamo and he found documents with hundreds of names, including four complete detainee assessment reports.
Seems that the search (at least the one admitted to evidence and reported on by the Guardian) had a protrusile agenda of expose.
There are no others, there is only us.
02-01-2012, 02:03 AM
RE: Glenn Greenwald's Salon expose of the Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & WikiLeaks affair
There´s actually a great documentary on this subject which I don´t have the bandwidth or time to seed properly: Wikileaks: Secrets and Lies - tpb link, Torrentday link (much better seeds/speed but private)
02-02-2012, 10:08 PM
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
The Assange Case Means That We Are All Suspects Now
By John Pilger
Global Research, February 1, 2012
This week’s Supreme Court hearing in the Julian Assange case has profound meaning for the preservation of basic freedoms in western democracies. This is Assange’s final appeal against his extradition to Sweden to face allegations of sexual misconduct that were originally dismissed by the chief prosecutor in Stockholm and constitute no crime in Britain.
The consequences, if he loses, lie not in Sweden but in the shadows cast by America’s descent into totalitarianism. In Sweden, he is at risk of being “temporarily surrendered” to the US where his life has been threatened and he is accused of “aiding the enemy” with Bradley Manning, the young soldier accused of leaking evidence of US war crimes to WikiLeaks.
The connections between Manning and Assange have been concocted by a secret grand jury in Alexandria, Virginia, which allowed no defence counsel or witnesses, and by a system of plea-bargaining that ensures a 90 per cent conviction. It is reminiscent of a Soviet show trial.
The determination of the Obama administration to crush Assange and the unfettered journalism represented by WikiLeaks is revealed in secret Australian government documents released under freedom of information which describe the US pursuit of WikiLeaks as “an unprecedented investigation”. It is unprecedented because it subverts the First Amendment of the US constitution that explicitly protects truth-tellers. In 2008 Barack Obama said, “Government whistleblowers are part of a healthy democracy and must be protected from reprisal.” Obama has since prosecuted twice as many whistleblowers as all previous US presidents.
With American courts demanding to see the worldwide accounts of Twitter, Google and Yahoo, the threat to Assange, an Australian, extends to any internet-user anywhere. Washington’s enemy is not “terrorism” but the principle of free speech and voices of conscience within its militarist state and those journalists brave enough to tell their stories.
“How do you prosecute Julian Assange and not the New York Times?” a former administration official told Reuters. The threat is well understood by the New York Times, which in 2010 published a selection of the WikiLeaks cables. The editor at the time, Bill Keller, boasted that he had sent the cables to the State Department for vetting. His obeisance extended to his denial that WikiLeaks was a “partner” -- which it was -- and to personal attacks on Assange. The message to all journalists was clear: do your job as it should be done and you are traitors; do your job as we say you should and you are journalists.
Much of the media’s depiction of Bradley Manning illuminates this. The world’s pre-eminent prisoner of conscience, Manning remained true to the Nuremberg principle that every soldier has the right to a “moral choice”. But according to the New York Times, he is weird or mad, a “geek”. In an “exclusive investigation”, the Guardian reported him as an “unstable” gay man, who got “out of control” and “wet himself” when he was “picked on”. Psycho-hearsay such as this serves to suppress the truth of the outrage Manning felt at the wanton killing in Iraq, his moral heroism and the criminal complicity of his military superiors. “I prefer a painful truth over any blissful fantasy,” he reportedly said.
The treatment handed out to Assange is well-documented, though not the duplicitous and cowardly behaviour of his own government. Australia remains a colony in all but name. Australian intelligence agencies are, in effect, branches of the main office in Washington. The Australian military has played a regular role as US mercenary. When prime minister Gough Whitlam tried to change this in 1975 and secure Australia’s partial independence, he was dismissed by a governor-general using archaic “reserve powers” who was revealed to have intelligence connections.
WikiLeaks has given Australians a rare glimpse of how their country is run. In 2010, leaked US cables disclosed that key government figures in the Labor Party coup that brought Julia Gillard to power were “protected” sources of the US embassy: what the CIA calls “assets”. Kevin Rudd, the prime minister she ousted, had displeased Washington by being disobedient, even suggesting that Australian troops withdraw from Afghanistan.
In the wake of her portentous rise ascent to power, Gillard attacked WikiLeaks as “illegal” and her attorney-general threatened to withdraw Assange’s passport. Yet the Australian Federal Police reported that Assange and WikiLeaks had broken no law. Freedom of information files have since revealed that Australian diplomats have colluded with the US in its pursuit of Assange. This is not unusual. The government of John Howard ignored the rule of law and conspired with the US to keep David Hicks, an Australian citizen, in Guantanamo Bay, where he was tortured. Australia’s principal intelligence organisation, ASIO, is allowed to imprison refugees indefinitely without explanation, prosecution or appeal.
Every Australian citizen in grave difficulty overseas is said to have the right to diplomatic support. The denial of this to Assange, bar the perfunctory, is an unreported scandal. Last September, Assange’s London lawyer, Gareth Peirce, wrote to the Australian government, warning that Assange’s “personal safety and security has become at risk in circumstances that have become highly politically charged”. Only when the Melbourne Age reported that she had received no response did a dissembling official letter turn up. Last November, Peirce and I briefed the Australian Consul-General in London, Ken Pascoe. One of Britain’s most experienced human rights lawyers, Peirce told him she feared a unique miscarriage of justice if Assange was extradited and his own government remained silent. The silence remains.
02-11-2012, 07:00 PM
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
(to be updated in an hour or two)
Who is Behind Wikileaks?
By Michel Chossudovsky
Global Research, December 13, 2010
"World bankers, by pulling a few simple levers that control the flow of money, can make or break entire economies. By controlling press releases of economic strategies that shape national trends, the power elite are able to not only tighten their stranglehold on this nation's economic structure, but can extend that control world wide. Those possessing such power would logically want to remain in the background, invisible to the average citizen." (Aldous Huxley)
Wikleaks is upheld as a breakthrough in the battle against media disinformation and the lies of the US government.
Unquestionably, the released documents constitute an important and valuable data bank. The documents have been used by critical researchers since the outset of the Wikileaks project. Wikileaks earlier revelations have focussed on US war crimes in Afghanistan (July 2010) as well as issues pertaining to civil liberties and the "militarization of the Homeland" (see Tom Burghardt, Militarizing the "Homeland" in Response to the Economic and Political Crisis, Global Research, October 11, 2008)
In October 2010, WikiLeaks was reported to have released some 400,000 classified Iraq war documents, covering events from 2004 to 2009 (Tom Burghardt, The WikiLeaks Release: U.S. Complicity and Cover-Up of Iraq Torture Exposed, Global Research, October 24, 2010). These revelations contained in the Wikileaks Iraq War Logs provide "further evidence of the Pentagon's role in the systematic torture of Iraqi citizens by the U.S.-installed post-Saddam regime." (Ibid)
Progressive organizations have praised the Wikileaks endeavor. Our own website Global Research has provided extensive coverage of the Wikileaks project.
The leaks are heralded as an immeasurable victory against corporate media censorship.
But there is more than meets the eye.
Even prior to the launching of the project, the mainstream media had contacted Wikileaks.
There are also reports from published email exchanges (unconfirmed) that Wikileaks had, at the outset of the project in January 2007, contacted and sought the advice of Freedom House. This included an invitation to Freedom House (FH) to participate in the Wikileaks advisory board:
"We are looking for one or two initial advisory board member from FH who may advise on the following:
1. the needs of FH as consumer of leaks exposing business and political corruption
2. the needs for sources of leaks as experienced by FH
3. FH recommendations for other advisory board members
4. general advice on funding, coallition [sic] building and decentralised operations and political framing" (Wikileaks Leak email exchanges, January 2007).
There is no evidence of FH followup support to the Wikileaks project. Freedom House is a Washington based "watchdog organization that supports the expansion of freedom around the world". It is chaired by William H. Taft IV who was legal adviser to the State Department under G. W. Bush and Deputy Secretary of Defense under the Reagan administration.
Wikileaks had also entered into negotiations with several corporate foundations with a view to securing funding. (Wikileaks Leak email exchanges, January 2007):
The linchpin of WikiLeaks's financial network is Germany's Wau Holland Foundation. ... "We're registered as a library in Australia, we're registered as a foundation in France, we're registered as a newspaper in Sweden," Mr. Assange said. WikiLeaks has two tax-exempt charitable organizations in the U.S., known as 501C3s, that "act as a front" for the website, he said. He declined to give their names, saying they could "lose some of their grant money because of political sensitivities."
Mr. Assange said WikiLeaks gets about half its money from modest donations processed by its website, and the other half from "personal contacts," including "people with some millions who approach us...." (WikiLeaks Keeps Funding Secret, WSJ.com, August 23, 2010)
Acquiring covert funding from intelligence agencies was, according to the email exchanges, also contemplated. (See Wikileaks Leak email exchanges, January 2007)
At the outset in early 2007, Wikileaks acknowledged that the project had been "founded by Chinese dissidents, mathematicians and startup company technologists, from the US, Taiwan, Europe, Australia and South Africa.... [Its advisory board] includes representatives from expat Russian and Tibetan refugee communities, reporters, a former US intelligence analyst and cryptographers." (Wikileaks Leak email exchanges, January 2007).
Wikileaks formulated its mandate on its website as follows: "[Wikileaks will be] an uncensorable version of Wikipedia for untraceable mass document leaking and analysis. Our primary interests are oppressive regimes in Asia, the former Soviet bloc, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Middle East, but we also expect to be of assistance to those in the west who wish to reveal unethical behavior in their own governments and corporations," CBC News - Website wants to take whistleblowing online, January 11, 2007, emphasis added).
This mandate was confirmed by Julian Assange in a June 2010 interview in The New Yorker:
"Our primary targets are those highly oppressive regimes in China, Russia and Central Eurasia, but we also expect to be of assistance to those in the West who wish to reveal illegal or immoral behavior in their own governments and corporations. (quoted in WikiLeaks and Julian Paul Assange : The New Yorker, June 7, 2010, emphasis added)
Assange also intimated that "exposing secrets" "could potentially bring down many administrations that rely on concealing reality—including the US administration." (Ibid)
From the outset, Wikileaks' geopolitical focus on "oppressive regimes" in Eurasia and the Middle East was "appealing" to America's elites, i.e. it seemingly matched stated US foreign policy objectives. Moreover, the composition of the Wikileaks team (which included Chinese dissidents), not to mention the methodology of "exposing secrets" of foreign governments, were in tune with the practices of US covert operations geared towards triggering "regime change" and fostering "color revolutions" in different parts of the World.
The Role of the Corporate Media: The Central Role of the New York Times
Wikileaks is not a typical alternative media initiative. The New York Times, the Guardian and Der Spiegel are directly involved in the editing and selection of leaked documents. The London Economist has also played an important role.
While the project and its editor Julian Assange reveal a commitment and concern for truth in media, the recent Wikileaks releases of embassy cables have been carefully "redacted" by the mainstream media in liaison with the US government. (See Interview with David E. Sanger, Fresh Air, PBS, December 8, 2010)
This collaboration between Wikileaks and selected mainstream media is not fortuitous; it was part of an agreement between several major US and European newspapers and Wikileaks' editor Julian Assange.
The important question is who controls and oversees the selection, distribution and editing of released documents to the broader public?
What US foreign policy objectives are being served through this redacting process?
Is Wikileaks part of an awakening of public opinion, of a battle against the lies and fabrications which appear daily in the print media and on network TV?
If so, how can this battle against media disinformation be waged with the participation and collaboration of the corporate architects of media disinformation?
Wikileaks has enlisted the architects of media disinformation to fight media disinformation: An incongruous and self-defeating procedure.
America's corporate media and more specifically The New York Times are an integral part of the economic establishment, with links to Wall Street, the Washington think tanks and the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).
Moreover, the US corporate media has developed a longstanding relationship to the US intelligence apparatus, going back to "Operation Mocking Bird", an initiative of the CIA's Office of Special Projects (OSP), established in the early 1950s.
Even before the Wikileaks project got off the ground, the mainstream media was implicated. A role was defined and agreed upon for the corporate media not only in the release, but also in the selection and editing of the leaks. In a bitter irony, the "professional media", to use Julian Assange's words in an interview with The Economist, have been partners in the Wikileaks project from the outset.
Moreover, key journalists with links to the US foreign policy-national security intelligence establishment have worked closely with Wikileaks, in the distribution and dissemination of the leaked documents.
In a bitter irony, Wikileaks partner The New York Times, which has consistently promoted media disinformation is now being accused of conspiracy. For what? For revealing the truth? Or for manipulating the truth? In the words of Senator Joseph L. Lieberman:
“I certainly believe that WikiLleaks has violated the Espionage Act, but then what about the news organizations — including The Times — that accepted it and distributed it?” Mr. Lieberman said, adding: “To me, The New York Times has committed at least an act of bad citizenship, and whether they have committed a crime, I think that bears a very intensive inquiry by the Justice Department.” (WikiLeaks Prosecution Studied by Justice Department - NYTimes.com, December 7, 2010)
This "redacting" role of The New York Times is candidly acknowledged by David E Sanger, Chief Washington correspondent of the NYT:
"[W]e went through [the cables] so carefully to try to redact material that we thought could be damaging to individuals or undercut ongoing operations. And we even took the very unusual step of showing the 100 cables or so that we were writing from to the U.S. government and asking them if they had additional redactions to suggest." (See PBS Interview; The Redacting and Selection of Wikileaks documents by the Corporate Media, PBS interview on "Fresh Air" with Terry Gross: December 8, 2010, emphasis added).
Yet Sanger also says later in the interview:
"It is the responsibility of American journalism, back to the founding of this country, to get out and try to grapple with the hardest issues of the day and to do it independently of the government." (ibid)
"Do it independently of the government" while at the same time "asking them [the US government] if they had additional redactions to suggest"?
David E. Sanger cannot be described as a model independent journalist. He is member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and the Aspen Institute's Strategy Group which regroups the likes of Madeleine K. Albright, Condoleeza Rice, former Defense Secretary William Perry, former CIA head John Deutch, the president of the World Bank, Robert. B. Zoellick and Philip Zelikow, former executive director of the 9/11 Commission, among other prominent establishment figures. (See also F. William Engdahl, Wikileaks: A Big Dangerous US Government Con Job, Global Research, December 10, 2010).
It is worth noting that several American journalists, members of the Council on Foreign Relations have interviewed Wikileaks, including Time Magazine's Richard Stengel (November 30, 2010) and The New Yorker's Raffi Khatchadurian. (WikiLeaks and Julian Paul Assange : The New Yorker, June 11, 2007)
Historically, The New York Times has served the interests of the Rockefeller family in the context of a longstanding relationship. The current New York Times chairman Arthur Sulzberger Jr. is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, son of Arthur Ochs Sulzberger and grandson of Arthur Hays Sulzberger who served as a Trustee for the Rockefeller Foundation. Ethan Bronner, deputy foreign editor of The New York Times as well as Thomas Friedman among others are also members of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). (Membership Roster - Council on Foreign Relations)
In turn, the Rockefellers have an important stake as shareholders of several US corporate media.
The Embassy and State Department Cables
It should come as no surprise that David E. Sanger and his colleagues at the NYT centered their attention on a highly "selective" dissemination of the Wikileaks cables, focussing on areas which would support US foreign policy interests: Iran's nuclear program, North Korea, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan's support of Al Qaeda, China's relations with North Korea, etc. These releases were then used as source material in NYT articles and commentary.
The Embassy and State Department cables released by Wikileaks were redacted and filtered. They were used for propaganda purposes. They do not constitute a complete and continuous set of memoranda.
From a selected list of cables, the leaks are being used to justify a foreign policy agenda. A case in point is Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program, which is the object of numerous State Department memos, as well as Saudi Arabia's support of Islamic terrorism.
Iran's Nuclear Program
The leaked cables are used to feed the disinformation campaign concerning Iran's Weapons of Mass Destruction. While the leaked cables are heralded as "evidence" that Iran constitutes a threat, the lies and fabrications of the corporate media concerning Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program are not mentioned, nor is there any mention of them in the leaked cables.
The leaks, once they are funnelled into the corporate news chain, edited and redacted by the New York Times, indelibly serve the broader interests of US foreign policy, including US-NATO-Israel war preparations directed against Iran.
With regard to "leaked intelligence" and the coverage of Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program, David E. Sanger has played a crucial role. In November 2005, The New York Times published a report co-authored by David E. Sanger and William J. Broad entitled "Relying on Computer, U.S. Seeks to Prove Iran's Nuclear Aims".
The article refers to mysterious documents on a stolen Iranian laptop computer which included "a series of drawings of a missile re-entry vehicle" which allegedly could accommodate an Iranian produced nuclear weapon:
"In mid-July, senior American intelligence officials called the leaders of the international atomic inspection agency to the top of a skyscraper overlooking the Danube in Vienna and unveiled the contents of what they said was a stolen Iranian laptop computer.
The Americans flashed on a screen and spread over a conference table selections from more than a thousand pages of Iranian computer simulations and accounts of experiments, saying they showed a long effort to design a nuclear warhead, according to a half-dozen European and American participants in the meeting.
The documents, the Americans acknowledged from the start, do not prove that Iran has an atomic bomb. They presented them as the strongest evidence yet that, despite Iran's insistence that its nuclear program is peaceful, the country is trying to develop a compact warhead to fit atop its Shahab missile, which can reach Israel and other countries in the Middle East."(William J. Broad and David E. Sanger Relying on Computer, U.S. Seeks to Prove Iran's Nuclear Aims - New York Times, November 13, 2005, emphasis added)
These "secret documents" were subsequently submitted by the US State Department to the International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA, with a view to demonstrating that Iran was developing a nuclear weapons program. They were also used as a pretext to enforce the economic sanctions regime directed against Iran, adopted by the UN Security Council.
While their authenticity has been questioned, a recent article by investigative reporter Gareth Porter confirms unequivocally that the mysterious laptop documents are fake. (See Gareth Porter, Exclusive Report: Evidence of Iran Nuclear Weapons Program May Be Fraudulent, Global Research, November 18, 2010).
The drawings contained in the documents leaked by William J. Broad and David E. Sanger do not pertain to the Shahab missile but to an obsolete North Korean missile system which was decommissioned by Iran in the mid-1990s. The drawings presented by US State Department officials pertained to the "Wrong Missile Warhead":
In July 2005, ... Robert Joseph, US undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, made a formal presentation on the purported Iranian nuclear weapons program documents to the agency's leading officials in Vienna. Joseph flashed excerpts from the documents on the screen, giving special attention to the series of technical drawings or "schematics" showing 18 different ways of fitting an unidentified payload into the re-entry vehicle or "warhead" of Iran's medium-range ballistic missile, the Shahab-3. When IAEA analysts were allowed to study the documents, however, they discovered that those schematics were based on a re-entry vehicle that the analysts knew had already been abandoned by the Iranian military in favor of a new, improved design. The warhead shown in the schematics had the familiar "dunce cap" shape of the original North Korean No Dong missile, which Iran had acquired in the mid-1990s. ... The laptop documents had depicted the wrong re-entry vehicle being redesigned. ... (Gareth Porter, op cit, emphasis added)
David E, Sanger, who worked diligently with Wikileaks under the banner of truth and transparency was also instrumental in the New York Times "leak" of what Gareth Porter describes as fake intelligence. (Ibid)
While this issue of fake intelligence received virtually no media coverage, it invalidates outright Washington's assertions regarding Iran's alleged nuclear weapons. It also questions the legitimacy of the UN Security Council Sancions regime directed against Iran.
Moreover, in a bitter irony, the selective redacting of the Wikileaks embassy cables by the NYT has usefully served not only to dismiss the central issue of fake intelligence but also to reinforce, through media disinformation, Washington's claim that Iran is developing nuclear weapons. A case in point is a November 2010 article co-authored by David E. Sanger, which quotes the Wikileaks cables as a source:
"Iran obtained 19 of the missiles from North Korea, according to a [Wikileaks] cable dated Feb. 24 of this year.... (WikiLeaks Archive — Iran Armed by North Korea - NYTimes.com, November 28, 2010).
These missiles are said to have the "capacity to strike at capitals in Western Europe or easily reach Moscow, and American officials warned that their advanced propulsion could speed Iran’s development of intercontinental ballistic missiles." (Ibid, emphasis added).
Wikileaks, Iran and the Arab World
The released wikileaks cables have also being used to create divisions between Iran on the one hand and Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States on the other:
"After WikiLeaks claimed that certain Arab states are concerned about Iran’s nuclear program and have urged the U.S. to take [military] action to contain Iran, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took advantage of the issue and said that the released cables showed U.S. concerns regarding Iran’s nuclear program are shared by the international community." Tehran Times : WikiLeaks promoting Iranophobia, December 5, 2010)
The Western media has jumped on this opportunity and has quoted the State Department memoranda released by Wikleaks with a view to upholding Iran as a threat to global security as well as fostering divisions between Iran and the Arab world.
"The Global War on Terrorism"
The leaks quoted by the Western media reveal the support of the Gulf States and Saudi Arabia to several Islamic terrorist organizations, a fact which is known and amply documented.
What the reports fail to mention, however, which is crucial in an understanding of the "Global War on Terrorism", is that US intelligence historically has channelled its support to terrorist organizations via Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. (See Michel Chossudovsky, America's "War on Terrorism", Global Research, Montreal, 2005). These are US sponsored covert intelligence operations using Saudi and Pakistani intelligence as intermediaries.
In this regard, the use of the Wikleaks documents by the media tends to sustain the illusion that the CIA has nothing to do with the terror network and that Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states are "providing the lion's share of funding" to Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Lashkar-e-Taiba, among others, when in fact this financing is undertaken in liaison and consultation with their US intelligence counterparts:
"The information came to light in the latest round of documents released Sunday by Wikileaks. In their communiques to the State Department, U.S. embassies in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states describe a situation in which wealthy private donors, often openly, lavishly support the same groups against whom Saudi Arabia claims to be fighting." ( Wikileaks: Saudis, Gulf States Big Funders of Terror Groups - Defense/Middle East - Israel News - Israel National News)
Similarly, with regard to Pakistan:
The cables, obtained by WikiLeaks and made available to a number of news organizations, make it clear that underneath public reassurances lie deep clashes [between the U.S. and Pakistan] over strategic goals on issues like Pakistan's support for the Afghan Taliban and tolerance of Al Qaeda,..." (Wary Dance With Pakistan in Nuclear World, The New York Times December 1, 2010)
Reports of this nature serve to provide legitimacy to US drone attacks against alleged terrorist targets inside Pakistan.
The corporate media's use and interpretation of the Wikileaks cables serves to uphold two related myths:
1) Iran has nuclear weapons program and constitutes a threat to global security.
2) Saudi Arabia and Pakistan are state sponsors of Al Qaeda. They are financing Islamic terrorist organizations which are intent upon attacking the US and its NATO allies.
The CIA and the Corporate Media
The CIA's relationship to the US media is amply documented. The New York Times continues to entertain a close relationship not only with US intelligence, but also with the Pentagon and more recently with the Department of Homeland Security.
"Operation Mocking Bird" was an initiative of the CIA's Office of Special Projects (OSP), established in the early 1950s. Its objective was to exert influence on both the US as well as the foreign media. From the 1950s, members of the US media were routinely enlisted by the CIA.
The inner workings of the CIA's relationship to the US media are described in Carl Bernstein's 1977 article in Rolling Stone entitled The CIA and the Media:
"[M]ore than 400 American journalists who [had] secretly carried out assignments for the Central Intelligence Agency, according to documents on file at CIA headquarters. [1950-1977]Some of these journalists’ relationships with the Agency were tacit; some were explicit. ... Reporters shared their notebooks with the CIA. Editors shared their staffs. Some of the journalists were Pulitzer Prize winners,... Most were less exalted: foreign correspondents who found that their association with the Agency helped their work....;
Among the executives who lent their cooperation to the Agency were Williarn Paley of the Columbia Broadcasting System, Henry Luce of Tirne Inc., Arthur Hays Sulzberger of the New York Times, Barry Bingham Sr. of the LouisviIle Courier‑Journal, and James Copley of the Copley News Service. Other organizations which cooperated with the CIA include the American Broadcasting Company, the National Broadcasting Company, the Associated Press, United Press International, Reuters, Hearst Newspapers, Scripps‑Howard, Newsweek magazine, the Mutual Broadcasting System, the Miami Herald and the old Saturday Evening Post and New York Herald‑Tribune. (The CIA and the Media by Carl Bernstein)
Bernstein suggests, in this regard, that "the CIA’s use of the American news media has been much more extensive than Agency officials have acknowledged publicly or in closed sessions with members of Congress" (Ibid).
In recent years, the CIA's relationship to the media has become increasingly complex and sophisticated. We are dealing with a mammoth propaganda network involving a number of agencies of government.
Media disinformation has become institutionalized. The lies and fabrications have become increasingly blatant when compared to the 1970s. The US media has become the mouthpiece of US foreign policy. Disinformation is routinely "planted" by CIA operatives in the newsroom of major dailies, magazines and TV channels: "A relatively few well-connected correspondents provide the scoops, that get the coverage in the relatively few mainstream news sources, where the parameters of debate are set and the "official reality" is consecrated for the bottom feeders in the news chain."(Chaim Kupferberg, The Propaganda Preparation of 9/11, Global Research, September 19, 2002).
Since 2001, the US media has assumed a new role in sustaining the "Global War on Terrorism" (GWOT) and camouflaging US sponsored war crimes. In the wake of 9/11, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld created the Office of Strategic Influence (OSI), or "Office of Disinformation" as it was labeled by its critics: "The Department of Defense said they needed to do this, and they were going to actually plant stories that were false in foreign countries -- as an effort to influence public opinion across the world.'" (Interview with Steve Adubato, Fox News, 26 December 2002, see also Michel Chossudovsky, War Propaganda, Global Research, January 3, 2003).
Today's corporate media is an instrument of war propaganda, which begs the question: why would the NYT all of a sudden promote transparency and truth in media, by assisting Wikileaks in "spreading the word"; and that people around the World would not pause for one moment and question the basis of this incongruous relationship.
On the surface, nothing proves that Wikileaks is a CIA covert operation. However, given the corporate media's cohesive and structured relationship to US intelligence, not to mention the links of individual journalists to the military-national security establishment, the issue of a CIA sponsored PsyOp must necessarily be addressed.
Wikileaks Social and Corporate Entourage
Wikileaks and The Economist have also entered into what seems to be a contradictory relationship. Wikileaks founder and editor Julian Assange was granted in 2008 The Economist's New Media Award.
The Economist has a close relationship to Britain's financial elites. It is an establishment news outlet, which has, on balance, supported Britain's involvement in the Iraq war. The Economist's Editor-in-Chief, John Micklethwait was a participant in the June 2010 Bilderberg conference.
The Economist also bears the stamp of the Rothschild family. Sir Evelyn Robert Adrian de Rothschild was chairman of The Economist from 1972 to 1989. His wife Lynn Forester de Rothschild currently sits on The Economist's board. The Rothschild family also has a sizeable shareholder interest in The Economist. Former Editor of The Economist (1974-86), Andrew Stephen Bower Knight is currently Chairman of the J. Rothschild Capital Management Fund. He is also reported to have been member of the Steering Group (1986) of the Bilderberg.
The broader question is why would Julian Assange receive the support from Britain's foremost establishment news outfit which has consistently been involved in media disinformation?
Are we not dealing with a case of "manufactured dissent", whereby the process of supporting and rewarding Wikileaks for its endeavors, becomes a means of controlling and manipulating the Wikileaks project, while at the same time embedding it into the mainstream media.
It is also worth mentioning another important link. Julian Assange's lawyer Mark Stephens of Finers Stephens Innocent (FSI), a major London elite law firm, happens to be the legal adviser to the Rothschild Waddesdon Trust. While this in itself does prove anything, it should nonetheless be examined in the broader context of Wikileaks' social and corporate entourage: the NYT, the CFR, The Economist, Time Magazine, Forbes, Finers Stephens Innocent (FSI), etc.
Wikileaks has the essential features of a process of "manufactured dissent". It seeks to expose government lies. It has released important information on US war crimes. But once the project becomes embedded in the mould of mainstream journalism, it is used as an instrument of media disinformation:
"It is in the interest of the corporate elites to accept dissent and protest as a feature of the system inasmuch as they do not threaten the established social order. The purpose is not to repress dissent, but, on the contrary, to shape and mould the protest movement, to set the outer limits of dissent. To maintain their legitimacy, the economic elites favor limited and controlled forms of opposition... To be effective, however, the process of "manufacturing dissent" must be carefully regulated and monitored by those who are the object of the protest movement " (See Michel Chossudovsky, "Manufacturing Dissent": the Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites, September 2010)
What this examination of the Wikileaks project also suggests is that the mechanics of New World Order propaganda, particularly with regard to its military agenda, has become increasingly sophisticated.
It no longer relies on the outright suppression of the facts regarding US-NATO war crimes. Nor does it require that the reputation of government officials at the highest levels, including the Secretary of State, be protected. New World Order politicians are in a sense "disposable". They can be replaced. What must be protected and sustained are the interests of the economic elites, which control the political apparatus from behind the scenes.
In the case of Wikileaks, the facts are contained in a data bank; many of those facts, particularly those pertaining to foreign governments serve US foreign policy interests. Other facts tend, on the other hand to discredit the US administration. With regard to financial information, the release of data pertaining to a particular bank instigated via Wikileaks by a rival financial institution, could potentially be used to trigger the collapse or bankrutpcy of the targeted financial institution.
All the Wiki-facts are selectively redacted, they are then "analyzed" and interpreted by a media which serves the economic elites.
While the numerous pieces of information contained in the Wikileaks data bank are accessible, the broader public will not normally take the trouble to consult and scan through the Wikileaks data bank. The public will read the redacted selections and interpretations presented in major news outlets.
A partial and biased picture is presented. The redacted version is accepted by public opinion because it is based on what is heralded as a "reliable source", when in fact what is presented in the pages of major newspapers and on network TV is a carefully crafted and convoluted distortion of the truth.
Limited forms of critical debate and "transparency" are tolerated while also enforcing broad public acceptance of the basic premises of US foreign policy, including its "Global War on Terrorism". With regard to a large segment of the US antiwar movement, this strategy seems to have succeeded: "We are against war but we support the 'war on terrorism'".
What this means is that truth in media can only be reached by dismantling the propaganda apparatus, --i.e. breaking the legitimacy of the corporate media which sustains the broad interests of the economic elites as well America's global military design.
In turn, we must ensure that the campaign against Wikileaks in the U.S., using the 1917 Espionage Act, will not be utilized as a means to wage a campaign to control the internet. In this regard, we should also stand firm in preventing the prosecution of Julian Assange in the US.
Note: Minor changes were added to this article on December 14 and 26, 2010
05-31-2012, 09:31 PM (This post was last modified: 05-31-2012 10:00 PM by h3rm35.)
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
Julian Assange and America's vendetta against WikiLeaks
As the contrast with the extradition case of Augusto Pinochet shows, it's one law for whistleblowers, another for war criminals
guardian.co.uk, Thursday 31 May 2012 15.52 EDT
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's protracted effort to fight extradition to Sweden suffered a body blow this week. Britain's supreme court upheld the arrest warrant, issued in December 2010.
After the court announced its split 5-2 decision, the justices surprised many legal observers by granting Assange's lawyers an opportunity to challenge their decision – the first such reconsideration since the high-profile British extradition case from more than a decade ago against former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. The decision came almost two years to the day after Private Bradley Manning was arrested in Iraq for allegedly leaking hundreds of thousands of classified US government documents to WikiLeaks.
The cases remind us that all too often whistleblowers suffer, while war criminals walk.
Assange has not been charged with any crime, yet he has been under house arrest in England for close to two years, ever since a European arrest warrant was issued by Sweden (importantly, by a prosecutor, not by a judge). Hoping to question Assange, the prosecutor issued the warrant for suspicion of rape, unlawful coercion and sexual molestation. Assange offered to meet the Swedish authorities in their embassy in London, or in Scotland Yard, but was refused.
Assange and his supporters allege that the warrant is part of an attempt by the US government to imprison him, or even execute him, and to shut down WikiLeaks. In April 2010, WikiLeaks released a US military video under the title Collateral Murder, with graphic images showing an Apache helicopter unit killing at least 12 Iraqi civilians, including a Reuters cameraman and his driver. In July 2010, WikiLeaks released the Afghan war diary, tens of thousands of secret US military communications that laid out the official record of the violent occupation of Afghanistan, the scale of civilian deaths and likely war crimes. The Swedish arrest warrant followed just weeks later.
So many public figures have called for Assange's assassination that a website was created to catalogue the threats. Former Arkansas governor, presidential candidate and Fox News commentator Mike Huckabee said that, for Assange, "anything less than execution is too kind a penalty". Prominent conservative Bill Kristol asked:
"Why can't we use our various assets to harass, snatch or neutralize Julian Assange and his collaborators, wherever they are?"
Death threats from rightwing ideologues are one thing. The main concern with an extradition to Sweden is that Assange will then be extradited to the United States. In another prominent document released by WikiLeaks, called the Global Intelligence Files, a portion of up to 5m emails were released from a private, global intelligence firm called Stratfor, based in Austin, Texas. The firm's vice president for intelligence, Fred Burton, wrote in a 26 January 2011 email:
"Not for Pub – We have a sealed indictment on Assange. Pls protect."
If an indictment has been issued in secret, then Assange could find himself in US custody shortly after landing in Sweden. He could be charged with espionage (the Obama administration has already invoked the law more than all previous US administrations combined), and could be imprisoned for life or executed.
The United Kingdom carefully considers extradition requests, as famously demonstrated when crusading Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon hoped to prosecute former Chilean dictator Pinochet for torture committed under his rule from 1973 to 1990. Based on Garzon's indictment, Pinochet was arrested in 1998 while travelling in London. After 16 months of hearings, the British courts finally decided that Pinochet could be extradited to Spain. The British government intervened, overruling the court, and allowed him to return to Chile.
Garzon is known for taking on global human rights cases under the doctrine of universal jurisdiction, indicting Osama bin Laden for the 9/11 attacks and probing the abuse of US prisoners at Guantánamo Bay. When he began investigating abuses under the fascist government of general Francisco Franco, who ruled Spain for 40 years, Garzon became the target of the right in Spain and was disbarred in early 2012, effectively ending his legal career.
Judge Garzon and Julian Assange have taken on entrenched power, whether government, military or corporate. Bradley Manning stands accused of the same. In differing degrees, their lives have forever changed; their careers, their freedoms and their reputations were threatened or destroyed.
This week, Hillary Clinton will be the first US official to visit Sweden in years. Why? What role is the US government playing in Assange's case? This week's developments bear crucially on the public's right to know, and why whistleblowers must be protected.
• Denis Moynihan contributed research to this column
06-01-2012, 10:06 PM (This post was last modified: 06-01-2012 10:11 PM by h3rm35.)
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
star chamber proceedings: n. any judicial or quasi-judicial action, trial, or hearing which so grossly violates standards of "due process" that a party appearing in the proceedings (hearing or trial) is denied a fair hearing. The term comes from a large room with a ceiling decorated with stars in which secret hearings of the privy council and judges met to determine punishment for disobedience of the proclamations of King Henry VIII of Great Britain (1509-1547). The high-handed, unfair, predetermined judgments, which sent the accused to The Tower of London or to the chopping block, made "star chamber" synonymous with unfairness and illegality from the bench. In modern American history the best example of star chamber proceedings was the conduct of the House UnAmerican Activities Committee (1938-1975) which used its subpena power to intimidate citizens by asking them unconstitutional questions about their political beliefs and associations, and then charging them with contempt of Congress for refusing to answer. Another example was the conduct of criminal proceedings against black defendants in some southern states from 1876 until the late 1960s. (See: kangaroo court)
Bradley Manning, America's Martyr For Open Government
The alleged WikiLeaks whistleblower, detained and abused for two years in prison, now on secret trial, defends all our freedoms
By Birgitta Jónsdóttir
May 30, 2012 "The Guardian" -- Little did I know when I was helping with the preparations for making public the historic leak "Collateral Murder" – the 2007 footage of a US Apache helicopter firing at and killing a group of people claimed to be insurgents, which included a Reuters journalist, released by WikiLeaks in 2010 – that the person possibly responsible for the courageous act of bringing the war crimes exposed in that video into the public domain, where it belonged, would end up in a military prison, even subjected to torture for months. Today marks two years of imprisonment of Private Bradley Manning. Two years out of his 24 years is a long time in military prison. His treatment has been highly controversial, every step of the way.
Following every bit of information available during the first few months of his ordeal made it clear that the US government was going to use Manning as a warning to anyone else who might feel compelled to report on war crimes, or any other crimes they witness from within the system. Blow the whistle, goes the warning, and you will be buried alive by the state, shredded by the same secrecy machine a whistleblower would try to expose.
Because of courage and creativity of activists, Bradley Manning has not been forgotten, even if that was the aim of authorities, and he never shall be forgotten. His case has been largely shunned by most of the mainstream media, especially in the US. This needs to change, because if he is indeed found guilty of being a whistleblower of such magnitude that it shook the entire secrecy machine of our world out of its comfort zone, his acts would need to be honored as an inspiration to change the way governments hide the reality of their actions from the people they are supposed to be serving and informing.
Manning should not be convicted in secret: the media should be given access to the court filings; and the media should be pushing harder for the first amendment of the US constitution to be honored in the Manning case. The state should acknowledge its responsibility towards its citizens and honor the promises of the current president, Barack Obama, of a more transparent state. Let the sunshine in, Mr President: if you have nothing to hide, there is nothing to fear.
Reporter Kevin Gosztola describes the bizarre situation at the Manning trials in his article "Why I am Challenging Secrecy in Bradley Manning's Court Martial":
"Reporters have come together multiple times during hearings in the past months to compare notes because we are unable to reference anything after the proceedings for the day are over to verify that what we heard was written down properly. The scene is like one you might see in a high school classroom when students are asking each other if they were able to get down what the teacher said because it might be in an exam.
"Of course, members of the press don't need to know this information to pass any test. They want to know this information so the public can know what is happening in one of the most significant cases in US history."
One of Manning's most visible supporters is the world's best known whistleblower, Daniel Ellsberg. It is worth remembering what he did and why, and at what level, because there has been much confusion about the parallels between the two. This was clearly demonstrated by President Obama when he said the cases were "not" similar because "Ellsberg's material wasn't classified the same way." The fact of the matter is this: the material disclosed in the Pentagon Papers leaked by Ellsberg was designated "top secret", the highest secrecy designation under law, whereas the material allegedly leaked by Manning to WikiLeaks was marked "secret" or "classified" – among the lowest-level secrecy designations. Yet Obama himself declared that Manning "broke the law" – months before the pre-trial hearings. It is obvious to anyone who cares to look into the Manning case that he will not get a fair trial if for no other reason than that the head of state has already declared he is guilty.
It is of the utmost importance that we do not cave into the fear the US government is trying to impose against whistleblowers and WikiLeaks. The main lesson in this saga is that governments should be open, be accountable, and understand they are not to govern but to serve those who put their trust in them. The trial, Manning's treatment, and the lack of accountability of those who have had their crimes exposed by the digital files Manning is accused of leaking, has put the US in the same global category as China, with its authoritarianism, secrecy and fear-mongering.
The land of the free has long gone into a cloak of dark secrets which most people in America would never accept if they knew. If freedom of expression, freedom of speech and freedom of information are taken from the marginalized few, you will never know when you will be next: do nothing and when they come for you, there will be no one left to defend you.
Birgitta Jónsdóttir is a poet who has served since April 2009 as an MP in the Icelandic parliament for the Movement, a political movement for democratic reform beyond party politics, which she helped create. Birgitta was chief sponsor for the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative (IMMI), and is chair of the International Modern Media Institute. She is also on the Bradley Manning advisory board.
Withholding Evidence from Bradley Manning’s Defense Team
By: Kevin Gosztola Tuesday May 29, 2012 10:12 am
The government continues to withhold evidence that Pfc. Bradley Manning, the soldier accused of releasing classified information to WikiLeaks, should be able to use to defend himself in court, according to his defense team.
In a motion filed on May 10, the defense argues that the government has not been conducting a search for evidence discoverable to the defense in a diligent and timely manner. The motion notes a government memo from July 29, 2011, that was sent to the Department of the Army headquarters (HQDA) requesting it to task “principal officials to search for, and preserve, any discoverable information.” An April 17, 2012, memo finds, “No action had been taken by HQDA pursuant to the July 29, 2011, memo” from the Department of Defense Office of the General Counsel (DOD OGC). This means the government has failed to take action “in response to the government’s request” for discoverable materials for nine months.
Or, as restated in the motion:
…The government has not yet completed a Brady search of its own files (i.e. files which are clearly in the possession, custody, and control of military authorities) even though two years have elapsed since PFC Manning was arrested. That the Government cannot “get its ducks in a row” with respect to discovery which is clearly under its control does not inspire confidence that the Government has diligently conducted a Brady search of other agencies [*Note: Brady refers to a rule that mandates the disclosure of evidence]…
The government’s failure has led the defense to renew its request for files that “have not yet been produced,” which include the “entire CID, DIA, DISA, and CENTCOM and SOUTHCOM files related to PFC Manning, Wikileaks, and/or the damage occasioned by the alleged leaks.” The motion indicates these files might be “documents, reports, analyses, files,investigations, letters, working papers, and damage assessments.”
There are sixty-three agencies of which the defense has sought documents, files, assessments, working papers, reports, etc, that are relevant to the case. To date, according to the motion, the defense has received “only 12 pages of Brady material.” Some of the material received has also been handed over with redactions that are inexplicable and unjustifiable to the defense.
For example, the government handed over a file from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that was “heavily redacted.” This violates an agreed upon requirement in court, as discovery and production of evidence is the same for classified and unclassified information.” The government has the power to invoke “limited disclosure” under a special rule known as MRE 505. This can be used to protect classified information that the government does not want to release, but the government did not assert this privilege on behalf of the FBI. Therefore, it is not permissible for the government to “unilaterally redact information.”
The motion requests that the government “be prepared to state, on the record, that its search of the sixty-three relevant agencies and other organizations it has contacted has not yielded any Brady material (i.e. material that is favorable to the accused, in that it reasonably tends to reduce guilt, negate guilt, or reduce punishment In making such a statement, the government should provide a statement of exactly what it asked for from these agencies.” The defense believes material from these agencies would reveal whether the leaks Manning is alleged to have committed resulted in any harm. And forcing the government to go on the record is one way the defense could potentially hold the government accountable for violating its obligation to provide discovery evidence to the defense.
The defense has known for some time that the government was acting improperly and obstructing efforts to obtain discoverable evidence. This is why the defense, led by David Coombs, moved to dismiss all charges that had been prejudiced as a result of discovery violated in March. A motion to dismiss was argued in open court in April and then Coombs made it clear the government had been searching only for material that could be considered a “smoking gun” or “game-changing” evidence. The government would not produce evidence that could lead to “reduction of punishment. The government would not produce damage assessment reports and were hiding behind technicalities (e.g. whether certain files were, in fact, investigations or not). And the government was not properly coordinating with original classification authorities (OCAs) so, if a judge ordered the discovery of evidence, agencies would be prepared to turn over evidence to the defense in a timely fashion.
The government has argued that information the defense is requesting is not technically in their control. This is why the motion filed by the defense clearly articulates the military organizations/entities, joint investigations, closely aligned organizations and unrelated law enforcement files, which the defense finds to be relevant to efforts to obtain discovery evidence.
Finally, this statement made by the defense holds the key to understanding the legal fun and games being played:
…the Government still seems to believe that it is the arbiter of what should or should not be disclosed in the interests of national security. It states that the prosecution will continue to provide as much information as authorized…As previously argued, it is not the role of the Government to balance the rights of the accused with national security… [emphasis added]
The government would like to limit the case to whether Manning committed the act or not and convict Manning without having to address the actual effect of his alleged leaks. This is why the government moved to preclude the defense from discussing the harm done by Manning’s alleged leaks during an April motion hearing. The team of military prosecutors pursuing the case has been given the task of protecting the government from further transparency or embarrassment.
This case is extremely sensitive to the US government. It centers on an act that exposed the inner workings of American superpower and subjected the US military and US diplomacy to a degree of scrutiny that no member of any institution in Washington would ever find allowable. The response to the massive leak that showed the world the bribery, corruption, coverups, fraud, misconduct, war crimes, etc—the way the US government really works—has been to sharply push back in the other direction. This is why the military now wants to monitor soldiers’ keystrokes, downloads and Web searches when they are using a computer.
The US government’s response to WikiLeaks has been to be more secretive, to further restrict soldiers’ activity and to escalate efforts to target WikiLeaks and all individuals believed to be involved in the leaks. Some consider this a failure of WikiLeaks and a vindication that the radical act of transparency, which transpired, was not worth it and wrong. However, the government’s inclination toward employee restrictions, retribution and secrecy, including the refusal to grant the press and public access to court filings in the legal proceedings against Manning, are symptoms of massive US government corruption, which must be kept concealed from the public and stage managed behind closed doors otherwise the gears of bureaucratic institutions might stop turning momentarily and interrupt government operations that officials publicly claim to be critical to national security so they do not have to change policies or reform.
Kevin Gosztola is the co-author of the book, “Truth and Consequences: The US vs. Bradley Manning.”
I might just get REALLY FUCKING LOUD if they end up executing this guy...
06-07-2012, 09:39 PM (This post was last modified: 06-07-2012 10:06 PM by h3rm35.)
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
Manning defense scores partial victory
Updated 14 hours ago
[Defense scores partial victory in WikiLeaks pretrial] FORT MEADE: Lawyers for WikiLeaks suspect Bradley Manning scored a partial victory Wednesday when a judge ruled his defense team should be given access to government documents on the scandal.
Manning, 24, is accused of leaking hundreds of thousands of military logs from Iraq and Afghanistan -- as well as US diplomatic cables on a wide range of issues -- to whistleblower WikiLeaks while serving as a low-ranking intelligence analyst.
He could be jailed for life if convicted of "aiding the enemy," one of 22 criminal charges that judge Colonel Denise Lind let stand at pre-trial hearings in April at Fort Meade, a military base north of Washington.
On the first day of a further round of hearings that began Wednesday, Lind ordered that a report by the Pentagon's Defense Intelligence Agency evaluating the consequences of Manning's alleged actions, be turned over to Manning's lawyers.
The decision came after David Coombs, one of the lawyers, complained that US government agencies were dragging their feet in providing documents he and his colleagues had requested to build their case.
"They have an obligation," Coombs said. "At this point we received less than half of the 63 documents."
The 28 that had so far been made available suggested there was minimal fallout from Manning's alleged leaks, he added.
"They basically say there's no damage, no impact," Coombs said.
Military prosecutor Ashden Fein, acknowledged that of the more than 40,000 pages prepared by the Federal Bureau of Investigation on the leaks, a mere 8,741 had been provided to the defense.
Meanwhile, a Central Intelligence Agency document was under revision, Fein added.
The baby-faced Manning, who was formally charged in February and looked frail Wednesday, faces trial on September 21. He has yet to enter a plea in the case.
Ahead of the proceedings, his lawyers have asked the court to throw out 10 of 22 counts filed against the US Army private.
They argue that the US government used "unconstitutionally vague" or "substantially overbroad" language in eight of those counts, in which Manning is accused of "possession and disclosure of sensitive information."
For two other counts, in which Manning is accused of "having knowingly exceeded authorized access" to a secret Defense Department computer network, his attorneys said the government failed to state an offense.
WikiLeaks, an anti-secrecy site created by Julian Assange, caused a diplomatic firestorm when it published documents Manning allegedly sent its way between November 2009 and May 2010.
Manning is painted as a traitor by some for his alleged role in the worst ever breach of US intelligence, which embarrassed Washington and dismayed US allies.
But his supporters view Manning as a political prisoner and praise WikiLeaks for uncovering government secrets.
To give the agencies time to compile the missing material, Coombs called on Lind to briefly postpone the proceedings.
The hearing that opened Wednesday is set to run for three days.
Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/06/07/...l_hearing/
Bradley Manning in court as lawyers wrestle over secret docs
Pre-trial hearing for soldier accused of WikiLeaks dump
By Anna Leach
Posted in Law, 7th June 2012 17:27 GMT
Bradley Manning, the US soldier charged with leaking confidential government and military documents to whistleblowing platform WikiLeaks, returned to court yesterday for the first day of a pretrial hearing as lawyers argued over what documents were relevant to his case.
The 23-year-old has been in jail since May 2010.
Manning's attorney, David Coombs, is seeking documents that assess the impact of the WikiLeaks scandal on the American government but said he had hit "roadblock after roadblock" in his quest to obtain them, reported the American Armed Forces Press Service .
Coombs accused the government of providing the requested records too slowly, in a piecemeal fashion or not at all.
The prosecution, acting for the CIA, said that Coombs' requests were "unreasonable" and irrelevant. Lead prosecutor, army Major Ashden Fein claimed that the defence was delaying the trial, and was attempting to "greymail" the government by demanding classified material that the government would be reluctant to release...
...Charges against the 23-year-old include: "aiding the enemy"; "wrongfully causing intelligence to be published on the internet knowing that it is accessible to the enemy", "theft of public property or records"; "transmitting defense information"; and "fraud and related activity in connection with computers".
The presiding judge at the military tribunal, Colonel Denise Lind, has allocated more days to pretrial hearings in an attempt to break through log-jams.
The next pre-trial hearings have been set for 16 to 20 July, 27 to 31 August, and 19 to 20 September.
Manning faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if found guilty of the charges.
Later this month, the court is scheduled to discuss a list of witnesses.
06-18-2012, 08:56 PM
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
WikiLeaks - The Forgotten Man
By Quentin McDermott
Private Bradley Manning was the man U.S. authorities allege stole classified military files, providing them to WikiLeaks for publication.
While WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange battles to avoid extradition from the United Kingdom to Sweden, on the other side of the Atlantic Bradley Manning is facing a court martial. If found guilty he could spend the rest of his life in prison.
It's a case that has all the hallmarks of a spy thriller. Bradley Manning was a U.S. soldier serving in Iraq, when he allegedly downloaded classified files onto a disk storing Lady Gaga songs. It's alleged he then confided what he'd done to a computer hacker. A short time later the authorities arrested Manning and he's been in a military jail ever since.
Early last year reporter Quentin McDermott told the story of Bradley Manning and the people who'd helped the United States government build a case against him. Now Four Corners reprises the program, updating it with crucial new elements describing the ferocious battle between hackers and the U.S. government as they pursue Julian Assange and WikiLeaks.
The program also talks to Juan Mendez, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture, about the treatment of Bradley Manning. Mr Mendez says Manning was subjected to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment during his "excessive and prolonged isolation" at Quantico Marine Corps Base outside Washington.
The question remains: will Bradley Manning attempt to avoid a life sentence by turning against Julian Assange?
The reprise of "WikiLeaks- The Forgotten Man", reported by Quentin McDermott and presented by Kerry O'Brien goes to air on Monday 18th June at 8.30 PM on ABC1. It is replayed on Tuesday 19th June at 11.35 PM. It can also be seen on ABC News24 on Saturday at 8.00 PM, on ABC iview or at 4 Corners....
transcript @ link
10-04-2012, 09:29 PM
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
The government has made an “absolute mockery” of Bradley Manning’s right to a speedy trial
Bradley Manning’s lawyer, David Coombs, has filed a 117-page motion calling for the dismissal of all charges with prejudice, for lack of a speedy trial. When he argues the motion at Ft. Meade, October 29 – November 2, Bradley will have been in pretrial confinement for nearly 900 days.
By Nathan Fuller. September 29, 2012.
PFC Bradley Manning
It’s appropriate that David Coombs’ longest motion of this trial yet, which argues for dismissal of all charges, details PFC Bradley Manning’s extraordinarily and illegally long pretrial confinement. The prosecution’s repeated and unjustifiable delays point “unmistakably to the conclusion that PFC Manning’s statutory and constitutional speedy trial rights have been trampled upon with impunity.”
Introducing the motion, which he posted to his blog on September 27, 2012, Coombs emphasizes the length of imprisonment thus far for the 24-year-old soldier accused of providing WikiLeaks with classified information:
“As of the date of this motion, PFC Manning has been in pretrial confinement for 845 days. Eight hundred forty-five days…. With trial scheduled to commence on 4 February 2013, PFC Manning will have spent a grand total of 983 days in pretrial confinement before even a single piece of evidence is offered against him. To put this amount of time into perspective, the Empire State Building could have been constructed almost two-and-a-half times over in the amount of time it will have taken to bring PFC Manning to trial.”
The Rule for Court Martial (RCM) 707 affords 120 days from arrest to arraignment to constitute a speedy trial. However, Bradley was arraigned nearly two years after his arrest and will have been imprisoned for nearly 1,000 days if his court-martial begins as scheduled on February 4, 2013.
There is no reason for this delay, Coombs argues, other than mishandling throughout by members of the government and the prosecution:
“The processing of this case has been marred with prosecutorial incompetence and a profound lack of Government diligence. The combination has led to an abject failure of the Government to honor PFC Manning’s fundamental speedy trial rights… For these reasons, the Defense requests this Court to dismiss all charges and specifications with prejudice.”
Pre-arraignment delays and the Convening Authority’s role
The defense first formally filed a speedy trial protest on January 13, 2011, and has protested all delays since. But that hasn’t impeded the prosecution from slowing the process to a crawl. Throughout 2011, the government requested seven delays of the pretrial Article 32 investigative hearing, arguing it was still working to obtain the permission to turn over documents to the defense. The Army’s court-martial Convening Authority granted these delay requests so routinely that Coombs called them the government’s “get-out-of-due-diligence-free” cards, because the Convening Authority failed to acknowledge the defense’s objections and refused to credit these delays to the government, instead repeatedly deeming them “excludable delays,” often without justification.
Coombs therefore holds the Convening Authority as much to blame for the lack of a speedy trial as the prosecution, writing, “The Convening Authority abandoned any attempt to make an independent determination of the reasonableness of any Government delay request. Instead, the Convening Authority operated as a mere rubber stamp by granting all delay requests.”
For example, when the government finally turned over to the defense the reviews of the Apache video and other documents, it neglected to explain the delay between the time they were approved and the time they were turned over, which ranged from 3 months to over a year. Then, the prosecution asked for an eighth excludable delay, citing one more classification review, despite the others’ completion several months prior. When that request was granted, the “Government unloaded a barrage of discovery and forensic evidence in the month or so before commencement of the Article 32 hearing, despite the fact the case had been ongoing for over a year and a half at that time,” which made it impossible for the defense to use that evidence at the Article 32 hearing. Instead of compelling the government to explain these elongated delays, the Convening Authority simply issued another excludable delay memorandum that let the prosecution off the hook.
Finally, Bradley was arraigned on February 23, 2012, 635 days after he was placed into pretrial confinement.
Discovery failures, government inaction, and withholding evidence
Prior to that arraignment, however, the defense made several separate discovery requests. The government eventually responded to those requests, very late, and “wholly inadequate[ly],” utterly non-responsive to the items the defense specifically requested. One reason for these lengthy delays, Coombs proffers, is a substantial amount of government inactivity. It appears that throughout the two-and-a-half years of Bradley’s confinement, there have been multiple periods in which the government did no work on his case for weeks at a time. These add up, Coombs tallies, to 323 total days of governmental inaction prior to Bradley’s arraignment – nearly half of the time that Manning was in jail.
Coombs proceeds to recount the prosecution’s long and repeated discovery delays, including its most recent withholding of hundreds of emails. “To hold that the Government’s discovery conduct has been reasonably diligent would make a complete mockery of that phrase,” he says. Despite Judge Denise Lind ordering the prosecution to account for due diligence mistakes, Coombs says some documents are still in the air. In fact, “it will not be until November 2012 that the Defense has all relevant discovery in its possession (over 900 days after PFC Manning was placed in pretrial confinement).”
The prosecution’s withholding of evidence has then forced the defense to request delays. Recall the government’s production of 84 emails the night before Coombs was to file his Article 13 motion. The government then notified Coombs that they had nearly 1,300 more emails related to Bradley’s confinement at Quantico, forcing Coombs to push back the Article 13 motion from August to November and to file a supplement motion. Had the government handed over the emails when it saw them, instead of waiting on them for six full months and producing them just hours before Coombs filed, no delay would have been needed.
Coombs predicted this very scenario would occur:
“How the Government could have waited so long to look at these emails which should have been produced as part of its discovery obligations is beyond me. The fact that the Government is now trying to hold the Defense to a time line of today when the need for a delay is due to their lack of diligence is unbelievable. The Defense has repeated since referral its concern that information would be dumped on us on the eve of trial. This is [a] perfect example of the Defense’s concerns coming to fruition.”
The court-martial is currently scheduled for February 4, 2013. But what if the prosecution is hiding more documents, only to produce them on the eve of another motion? How much longer might this pretrial delay go on?
A speedy trial is a fundamental right
Explaining his legal reasoning for the motion, Coombs cites Article 10 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and the RCM 707 – the military equivalents of the 6th Amendment to the Constitution – each of which he explained back in January 2011 regarding Bradley’s right to a speedy trial. Coombs delves deeply into the various ways in which the prosecution has violated both of these legal precepts, showing how the prosecution was granted several delays that the Convening Authority should not have excluded from the speedy trial clock.
RCM 707 affords 120 days from arrest to arraignment. The government cannot dispute that at least 103 of those days have passed without excludable delays. This means that if only one or two of the many government delays are found to be illegitimate, and if those delays add up to 17 or more days, this motion by law should be successful. By Coombs’ count, up to Manning’s arraignment,
“532 days have been excluded by the Convening Authority and the Article 32 IO. This Motion does not challenge 205 days of those excluded days…. Subtracting those 205 unchallenged days from the 635 total days, the Convening Authority and the Article 32 IO excluded 327 days of the 430 remaining days. Those exclusions amount to a total of over 76% of the 430 days.”
To emphasize how unprecedented this length of pretrial confinement is, Coombs says,
“The 845 days PFC Manning has already spent in pretrial confinement dwarfs other periods of pretrial confinement that the Court of Appeals found to be facially unreasonable, and it is plainly sufficient to trigger the analysis into the remaining factors in the Article 10 framework. Indeed, the Defense has found no reported military case involving a period of delay even close to the 845 delay in this case.”
Coombs concludes that given these rampant violations and “profound disregard” of Manning’s due process rights, dismissal of charges with prejudice is the only acceptable remedy.
But Coombs knows how the government will try to oppose this motion. To excuse their delays and mishandling of evidence throughout this trial, the prosecution has often lamented this case’s extraordinary size and scope. But the way the government has charged Bradley Manning is largely to blame for this very complexity. As the ACLU argued in April, the government has aggressively “overreached” in prosecuting Bradley, so much so that they’ve created unprecedented theories that they must later defend. As Coombs explains,
“The Government cannot be given a free pass on the reasonable diligence inquiry simply by asserting the complexity of the case, especially when it has charged the case in such a complex manner that necessitated delay in the proceedings to allow the Government to mull over how it can make the proof fit its lofty and imaginative charging decision…. PFC Manning’s speedy trial rights cannot hinge upon the unfortunate circumstance of having an imaginative prosecutor assigned to his case.”
The government’s new and dangerously broad interpretations of the law, mainly Article 104 or “aiding the enemy,” have made it difficult for the prosecution to litigate and impossible for Manning to receive a fair and speedy trial.
Furthermore, the government has virtually unlimited resources in prosecuting Bradley Manning, compared with the defense’s smaller team, dwindling resources, and grassroots-donation funding – so the idea that the government, and not the defense, needs more time, is preposterous:
“PFC Manning is not being sued by some tired, overworked attorney in a shabby office; he is being prosecuted by the United States of America, which has full command of an arsenal of resources. Five full-time prosecutors are assigned to this case. Many more SJA attorneys [Staff Judge Advocates] and paralegals may be summoned for further assistance at a moment’s notice.”
Coombs has already made some of these arguments. But in this exhaustive motion, he lays out a strong case that Bradley Manning has been deprived of a speedy trial, explaining why each of the government’s justifications for delays obfuscate its own ineptitude and failure to abide by the law:
“Every conceivable excuse offered by the Government is simply a red herring designed to detract this Court’s attention from the ugly truth of this case: the Government was operating for almost two years under a profound misunderstanding of its bedrock discovery obligations and the Government was incredibly lethargic in processing this case on all fronts. All the excuses under the sun fail to justify why, after PFC Manning has spent 845 days in pretrial confinement, the Government is still not ready for trial.”
Coombs couldn’t be clearer: “A military accused’s right to speedy trial is fundamental. The Government’s process of this case makes an absolute mockery of that fundamental right.” Judge Lind has already agreed that the government hasn’t fully lived up to its due diligence obligations. With this motion, however, we can see that rather than a simple slip-up, or a forgetful occasion or two, this has been a systemic effort to neglect Manning’s due process rights. Nearly 900 days after Manning’s arrest, this trial has been anything but speedy. Coombs’ motion to “dismiss all charges and specifications with prejudice” is comprehensive, detailed, and legally sound. He’ll be back in the Fort Meade, Maryland, courtroom in front of Judge Lind October 17-18 to discuss witnesses in support of this motion, then again October 29-November 2 to make the case.
02-27-2013, 07:36 PM
RE: Bradley Manning, Adrian Lamo & the WikiLeaks Affair
Here's the latest on the Bradley Manning circus. 1000+ days in prison without trial.
Quote:Army forced to release documents related to secretive Bradley Manning casehttp://rt.com/usa/army-releases-manning-docs-556/
Only 7 of 500+ documents forced to be released -- throwing the masses a bone no doubt?!
Latest Updates on the case here: http://www.bradleymanning.org/
There are no others, there is only us.
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