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Bradley Manning Sentenced to 35 Years

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Fred Kaplan, War Stories columnist for Slate, and Floyd Abrams, who argued for The New York Times in the Pentagon Papers case, discuss the sentencing in the trial of WikiLeaks source Pfc. Bradley Manning. A judge has sentenced Manning to 35 years in prison. He was acquitted on charges of aiding the enemy but convicted of several lesser charges. Abrams is a First Amendment lawyer and author of Friend of the Court: On the Front Lines with the First Amendment. Kaplan is also author of The Insurgents: David Petraeus and the Plot to Change the American Way of War.

Guests:

Floyd Abrams and Fred Kaplan

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Comments [30]

Mr. Bad from NYC


Thompson: What's going on here, Lieutenant?
Calley: This is my business.
Thompson: What is this? Who are these people?
Calley: Just following orders.
Thompson: Orders? Whose orders?
Calley: Just following...
Thompson: But, these are human beings, unarmed civilians, sir.
Calley: Look Thompson, this is my show. I'm in charge here. It ain't your concern.
Thompson: Yeah, great job.
Calley: You better get back in that chopper and mind your own business.
Thompson: You ain't heard the last of this!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hugh_Thompson,_Jr.

HEY AMERICA REMEMBER WHAT IT WAS LIKE TO DEFEND THE LIVES OF THE HELPLESS AND HOPELESS? PRETTY GOOD, RIGHT? NOT NOW. NOT NOW.

Aug. 21 2013 08:02 PM
Mr. Bad from NYC

@ Independent_Noach

Thanks for taking a minute off of your anti-butsex tirades to respond to a comment I made not involving anal penetration.

Here's another quote from Assange:

"That’s a $2.5 million hit job on my reputation, the reputation of the organization."

That about says it all. Wikileaks was infiltrated from the beginning by US intelligence assets:

http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/technology/technology-news/sigurdur-thordarson-wikileakss-babyfaced-traitor-20130815-2ryiu.html

&

http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2013-06-04/world/39729591_1_hacker-adrian-lamo-ashden-fein-manning-s

Assange is an egomaniac on a mission, ready to believe anyone who told him he was the messiah. He took down a lot of good people who trusted him with his arrogance and will continue to do so, Manning was only the first.

What exactly is your point? Because my point is it's complicated. Assange outlived his usefulness to US counter-espionage and now he's toast. I hope the next Wikileaks does more to protect its sources and is headed by someone more interested in promoting transparency and less interested in "crushing bastards" to compensate for nerd but-hurt.

Aug. 21 2013 07:36 PM

@ Mr. Bad from NYC:
"Anybody who actually wants to understand why Manning did what he did should go watch "We Steal Secrets" a doc on Wikileaks from Alex Gibney."

Julian Assange responding-to Gibney's film, Democracy Now!, May 29th:

"What’s the equivalent title? I Make Fictitious, Fraudulent Films: The Story of Alex Gibney. In response, we have published the full transcript, ahead of public—ahead of the film’s release, with line-by-line detail showing exactly how Alex Gibney edited statements, stitched them together, etc., and didn’t engage in—didn’t engage, it seems, in any fact checking of the statements that the people he was interviewing. You know, for an example, I make some statement that begins with, "Well, what they say is," and then I quote it. Alex Gibney cuts off the "What they say," so in order to put someone else’s words into my mouth. And that’s present throughout the film. This is not a serious work."

Full-transcript at:
http://www.democracynow.org/2013/5/29/julian_assange_on_meeting_with_google

Aug. 21 2013 07:22 PM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

BRAVO - Manning is a traitor and should rot in prison.

Aug. 21 2013 02:42 PM
Mr. Bad from NYC

@ Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

I think you missed the point of my comment. Way to divert attention from that though. You forgot to mention China. Still, to your completely irrelevant point, Putin's Russia is clearly #1 given the fact it has:

a) A seat on the UN security council

b) Client states

c) a massive nuclear weapons cache

d) regressive social policies and unrivaled institutional corruption

e) brutal state control of dissent

Who else checks all those boxes?

Aug. 21 2013 01:04 PM

"the #1 authoritarian, practically medieval regime on the planet, Putin's Russia."

Have you ever heard of North Korea?

Aug. 21 2013 12:30 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

I forgot North Korea and the multi-generational Socialist Kim Jong family dictatorship.

Aug. 21 2013 12:27 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Comrade Bad from NYC

>Yes, you make a wonderful point, we are marginally more judicious in our punishments than the #1 authoritarian, practically medieval regime on the planet, Putin's Russia.

Really? You seem to be misinformed when it comes to medieval regimes. You strangely forgot Cuba, the Islamist Regime of Iran, Syria, Muslim Brotherhood and its ideological partners like the Taliban.

>Next you'll be comparing our public safety issues to Afghanistan and our weather to Antarctica? SWOOOSH, 2 points! USA! USA!

Sorry, No Points for you comrade.

Aug. 21 2013 12:23 PM
Mr. Bad from NYC

@ Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

Yes, you make a wonderful point, we are marginally more judicious in our punishments than the #1 authoritarian, practically medieval regime on the planet, Putin's Russia. Next you'll be comparing our public safety issues to Afghanistan and our weather to Antarctica? SWOOOSH, 2 points! USA! USA!

Aug. 21 2013 12:17 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

A reminder of how the Soviets treat dissents.

"Alexander Litvinenko was a former officer of the Russian Federal Security Service, FSB and KGB, who fled from court prosecution in Russia and received political asylum in the United Kingdom. According to his wife and father, he was working for MI6 and MI5 after receiving the asylum."

Poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poisoning_of_Alexander_Litvinenko

Aug. 21 2013 12:12 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretentious Hudson Heights

"the guardian" is as honest as "pravda".

Aug. 21 2013 12:08 PM
Mr. Bad from NYC

Anybody who actually wants to understand why Manning did what he did should go watch "We Steal Secrets" a doc on Wikileaks from Alex Gibney.

It was precisely because Manning felt he was complicit in war crimes, specifically the murder and torture of Iraqi civilians, that he felt compelled to act. Manning is more of a hero than Ellsberg ever was. His actions are more like those of another great American who is less well known, Hugh Thompson. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hugh_Thompson,_Jr.

Not that anyone cares. Just tie a yellow ribbon on your frigging SUV and you're a patriot. This country is sinking into totalitarianism so fast it's breathtaking.

Aug. 21 2013 12:07 PM

Chase Madar: "[Manning] deserves the Presidential Medal of Freedom instead of a jail cell at Fort Leavenworth."
http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/bradley-manning-american-hero/

Aug. 21 2013 12:03 PM

Daniel McCarthy, in The American Conservative:

"What Manning needs now is another Warren G. Harding, who commuted the prison sentence Woodrow Wilson inflicted on antiwar socialist Eugene V. Debs for urging resistance to the draft during wartime."
( http://www.theamericanconservative.com/mccarthy/bradley-manning-gets-35-years/ )

Aug. 21 2013 11:58 AM

I don't want privates to make the judgment as to what is or is not top secret.
He seems to think very highly of himself. I don't.

Aug. 21 2013 11:58 AM
Jack from Brooklyn

The power of the empire will not be deterred.

Aug. 21 2013 11:58 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

Death squads and torture are no longer war crimes according to Fred Kaplan?

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2010/oct/22/iraq-detainee-abuse-torture-saddam

Aug. 21 2013 11:58 AM
The Truth from Becky

Al Sharpton? Really? What is that example supposed to mean? He got less than the punishment he deserved.

Aug. 21 2013 11:57 AM
john from office

Wow, Brian has guests who remember this guy was a soldier, who had an oath.

Most of today's callers are from the loony fridge department.

Aug. 21 2013 11:55 AM
Jane from New York City

Yes, what about Nuremburg???

Aug. 21 2013 11:55 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

WHAT WAR CRIMES? FRAGO 242?

http://www.emptywheel.net/2013/03/07/guardian-lays-out-details-of-how-petraeus-organized-death-squads-in-iraq/

Aug. 21 2013 11:54 AM
Jackie from Brooklyn

Tragic. Why not put him under house arrest? He is not a danger to society and need not be imprisoned for such a long period in a place where he will doubtless be brutalized. House arrest would be infinitely cheaper and more civilized.

Aug. 21 2013 11:54 AM

Fred Kaplan's argument reminds me of the infamous Nuremburg defense.

Aug. 21 2013 11:52 AM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

It's slightly harsh but Manning shouldn't have expected to get off scott free. Even he should have known that.

Aug. 21 2013 11:51 AM
John from Fanwood

I had a top secret clearance when I worked for the Federal government, and I had to go through an FBI security investigation, and sign an agreement not to divulge TS information. I don't go along with the folks who proclaim Manning and Snowden heroes. Both committed crimes by divulging national secret.

Aug. 21 2013 11:51 AM
Truth & Beauty from Brooklyn

To the last female caller: Don't do the crime if you can't do the time.

This young man committed a crime and deserves to be punished.

Aug. 21 2013 11:50 AM
Christopher from Hoboken

35 years for Bradley Manning (is that counting the three years in solitary, or in addition to them?), no prosecutions of any of the war criminals he exposed.

American Justice. What's happened to us?

Aug. 21 2013 11:49 AM
PJ from NJ

He was always doomed . This is the USA, they lock you up for drinking beer on your stoop. Life in prison for robbery. He got lucky

Aug. 21 2013 11:36 AM
Ninbus from Upper West Side

Bradley Manning is an American hero whose only 'crime' was revealing the brutality and thoughtless violence of American armed forces. Anyone who doubts this should carefully view the 'Collateral Murder' video Manning turned over to Wikileaks after the NY Times and the Washington Post would have nothing to do with him.

He should be given a Nobel Prize for his bravery and forthrightness.

Hopefully, his sentence will be reduced (on appeal and/or review) and he will serve only a percentage of the 35-year bid.

Aug. 21 2013 11:05 AM
john from office

Brian, stop comparing Mr. Manning to your heros of the Vietnam era. He is a soldier, at a time of war. His actions amount to treason and he is lucky he was not sentenced to much more or worst. The judge obviously saw him as a tragic person who was very much in over his head.

Aug. 21 2013 10:52 AM

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