manning (1)RES

“When exposing a crime is treated as committing a crime, you are ruled by criminals.” -Anonymous

And so the persecution and media smearing of Nobel Peace Prize nominee PFC Bradley Manning begins. It has been reported that he is now called Chelsea Manning, following transgender surgery. We have not been able to verify that at the Akashic Times except to say that this is what the media have so far stated.

Therefore, for the purposes of clarity only, we will be making reference to Bradley Manning, not out of any disrespect to choices he may or may not have made, but just to distance ourselves from the media distractions that are currently trying to divert attention from what the soldier revealed.

In fact one has to ask oneself – why the prolonged focus on Manning’s sexual orientation and yet no word on what this particularly brave soldier fought for?

Bradley Manning has just been sent to jail for 35 years. He was also dishonourably discharged from the military and demoted in rank. Why? Did he murder someone? Nope. Rape someone? Nah. Con someone out of money? Nada.

Did he inhumanely torture someone, urinate upon them and imprison them without trial, regardless of whether they were innocent? Oh no. But he certainly exposed those in the US military who did. And that exposé earned him 35 years in jail.

On that day the US sent a very powerful message: hold us to account and you will pay. Talk about our policy of torture, murder, sexual abuse and mindless wars in Iraq and elsewhere – and we’re gonna make an example of you.

Manning is the reason why we know about the American military’s OFFICIAL policy to torture Iraqi prisoners of war. Manning leaked the “Iraq War Logs” to WikiLeaks. These documents detailed the brutal abuse and torture of thousands of reports of prisoners of war  that had been filed against the Iraqi Security Forces. Medical evidence revealed how prisoners had been whipped with heavy cables across the feet, hung from ceiling hooks, suffered holes being bored into their legs with electric drills, urinated upon, and sexually assaulted.

He also exposed “Frago 242,” an order implemented in 2004 to not investigate allegations of abuse against the Iraqi government. This order is in direct contravention of the UN Convention Against Torture, which was ratified by the United States in 1994. The Convention prohibits the Armed Forces from transferring a detainee to other countries “where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture.”

It gets worse. Manning also revealed that US officials were told to cover up evidence of child abuse by contractors in Afghanistan.

US defense contractors were brought under much tighter supervision after leaked diplomatic cables revealed that they had been complicit in child trafficking activities. DynCorp — a powerful defense contracting firm that claims almost $2 billion per year in revenue from US tax dollars — threw a party for security recruits featuring boys purchased from child traffickers for entertainment. DynCorp had already faced human trafficking charges before this incident took place.

Manning also disclosed evidence that Guantanamo prison has held mostly innocent people and low-level operatives. The Guantanamo Files describe how detainees were arrested based on what the New York Times referred to as highly subjective evidence. For example, some poor farmers were captured after they were found wearing a common watch or a jacket that was the same as those also worn by Al Qaeda operatives. How quickly innocent prisoners were released was heavily dependent on their country of origin.

He also unveiled the litany of torture and sadistic brutality against prisoners locked up in the hellhole that is Guantanamo.

What else did Manning expose? He revealed the US military’s role in the indiscriminate killing of Reuters journalists and innocent Iraqi civilians. He also produced evidence that the State Department backed corporate opposition to a Haitian minimum wage law.

Leaked diplomatic cables show that in 2009, the US Embassy in Port-au-Prince pushed then Haitian President Rene Preval to come out in support of powerful textile manufacturers who sought to block a popular minimum wage increase.

Discontent with causing war, murder and mayhem in other countries, the US also likes to meddle in poorer countries to ensure that workers who are employed by US corporations in those countries cannot get access to fair wages.  A series of cables show that the US Embassy closely monitored the movements and activities of student protestors supporting the $5/day minimum wage Bill.

The Bill’s supporters had argued that the increase was justified in light of rising inflation and food costs that had led to widespread starvation.

According to the leaked cables, the US delegation dismissed the proposed minimum wage increase as nothing more than a populist measure aimed at appeasing “the unemployed and underpaid masses.” Ultimately, the US delegation succeeded in their efforts when President Preval agreed to block the increase

Equally damning was the revelation that known Egyptian torturers received training from the FBI in Quantico, Virginia.

Perhaps more sinister is America’s obsession with DNA. Leaked cables from Bradley Manning show that the the State Department authorized the theft of the UN Secretary General’s DNA.
According to the “National Humint Collection Directive,” a secret document that was signed by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and published by WikiLeaks, US diplomats were authorized to collect “biometric” and other sensitive information from top UN officials as well as UN representatives from other nations. The leaked documents show that “biometric data” specifically included samples of the officials’ DNA, among other forms of personally identifying information. They also ordered diplomats to collect credit card information and secure passwords. These activities contravene the 1946 UN Convention on Human Rights.
Other state crimes revealed by Manning include Obama’s killer drone campaign in Pakistan, the Japanese and US decision to ignore the full scale of damage caused by the Fukushima explosion and the US faking its support for Tunisian President Ben Ali.

When you look at the sheer scale of criminality and brutality waged by both the military and those who are in control of corporate interests not just in the US – but the rest of the world – it is easy to see why they wanted it all to be covered up and hushed.

Rather than hold a full criminal inquiry into those who gave the nod to the many acts of depravity that Manning bravely exposed, they instead chose to persecute him, locked him up in solitary confinement, forcibly strip searched him and left him naked in his cell for days on end.

Military soldiers who are lower mortals than Manning, denied him meaningful exercise, social interaction and sunlight.

They wanted to make an example of Manning – in much the same way that the mafia does to its defectors.

The mainstream media also jumped on the bandwagon and instead preferred to highlight pictures of him dressed as a woman, called him a traitor and conducted a blatant and all-out smear campaign of the American hero.

This failed to halt the supporters from all over the globe who turned up to his trial, voiced their support for him even as he was sent down and signed online petitions for him to be freed. Over 15,000 signatures have already been signed at the time of this story going to press.

Campaigners have also launched a website entitled Pardon Bradley Manning, where supporters can submit photos of themselves holding up t-shirts and placards voicing support for the hero.

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