Add this Page to Facebook!   Submit to Twitter   Submit to Reddit   Submit to Stumble Upon   Pin It!   Fark It!   Tell A Friend  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite Save As Favorite View Article Stats
2 comments

General News

Military Judge Runs A Shell Game

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 3 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; (more...) ; ; ; ; , Add Tags  (less...) Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

Headlined to None 6/15/13
Become a Fan
  (24 fans)

opednews.com

U.S. Army Cons Public With Three-Card Monte Sting in Form of Court-Martial 

By William Boardman   (61313) 

Reader Supported News is the Publication of Origin for this work. Permission to republish is freely granted with credit and a link back to Reader Supported News.


Military Judge Col. Denise Lind. by [firedoglake]
 

To Have a Constitutional Public Trial, Don't You Have to Let the Public in?

Public access to the Bradley Manning court-martial doesn't exist in any meaningful sense, despite the demands of the U.S. Constitution or the Manual for Courts Martial United States (MCM) published by the U.S. Dept. of Defense, which is the prosecutor.

Court-martial judge Col. Denise Lind hasn't exactly banned the public -- or reporters, who are part of the public -- from the courtroom or its extensions, but she has presided over a system that, so far, seems designed to protect the public's right to know as little as possible. 

It's a scripted con game, a kind of judicial three-card monte in which the public is expected to keep believing it has a chance to know.  The following excerpts from the script, the unofficial court transcript, illuminate how the military plays the shell game of doing injustice while trying not to let injustice be seen to be done. 

The comments here are all by Judge Col. Lind from the June 10 morning session: 

"Just for the record, while the court is not interested in getting into the area of who is credentialed and who isn't credentialed as it's beyond the scope of this  trial, the court does note and so advised the parties in the RCM 802 that rules of court-martial are not structured to provide a contemporaneous transcript of proceedings." 

Nice distraction, putting attention on "who is credentialed" when the substantive issue us who gets access.  The Judge's MCM has no index listing for "press" or "media."  There is a listing for "public," which by definition includes all reporters, as well as all military personnel.  That's in Role 806(a), which also sets the primary expectation that "courts-martial shall be open to the public." 

That "shall" in the rule means that it's a judge's primary obligation to open the court-martial to the public, not an option, although the rule provides limited exceptions under exigent circumstances. The rule's discussion section states: "However, such exigencies should not be manipulated to prevent attendance at a court-martial."

RCM 802 is a jargon reference to pre-trial hearings that have already been held. 

The provision of a "contemporaneous transcript" is another distraction that leads attention away from the need for a meaningfully public trial. 

That "the court is not interested" in all this bespeaks a disdain for the public that one would expect to be better concealed.  

And that the court has, in effect outsourced its responsibility to control the courtroom and access to it, as described in Rule 806(b)(1), suggests possible dereliction of duty.

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3

 

Vermonter living in Woodstock: elected to five terms (served 20 years) as side judge (sitting in Superior, Family, and Small Claims Courts); public radio producer, "The Panther Program" -- nationally distributed, three albums (at CD Baby), some (more...)
 
Add this Page to Facebook!   Submit to Twitter   Submit to Reddit   Submit to Stumble Upon   Pin It!   Fark It!   Tell A Friend
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Nuclear Perceptions Fight Reality

Fukushima Spiking All of a Sudden

Vermont Asks: "What the Fukushima"?

Fukushima Meltdowns: Global Denial At Work

Military-Industrial Complex Owns Vermont

Accountability in Vermont?

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
2 people are discussing this page, with 2 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

And everyone knows it... after all, it's from the ... by mrk * on Sunday, Jun 16, 2013 at 6:17:03 PM
Interesting.  The portrait you paint or rathe... by Bill Dugan on Monday, Jun 17, 2013 at 6:55:50 AM