According to Aaron Mate and the press today (June 2013) in the USA, "The military trial of Army whistleblower Bradley Manning is underway. Manning is accused of providing more than 700,000 secret U.S. government documents and cables to WikiLeaks, the largest disclosure of state secrets in U.S. history. Manning faces more than 20 charges, including violating the Espionage Act and aiding the enemy. He has already pled guilty to 10 lesser charges of misusing classified material.The trial began Monday with the defense and prosecution presenting starkly contrasting accounts. Manning's defense lawyer, David Coombs, said Manning wanted to reveal the human costs of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Coombs said, quote, "[Bradley Manning] believed this information showed how we value human life. He was troubled by that. He believed that if the American public saw it, they too would be troubled."
All-in-all, evidence shows that Manning's decision to leak what amounts to less than 1% of all federal documents classified on a daily basis by the Obama regime was based on thoughtful conscientious decision making. He is a hero and an example for all whistle-blowers and real citizen soldiers anywhere. This contrasts significantly with the previous vignette or incident from 1943 concerning Soldier Thoelking in Nazi-Controlled Germany. Thoelking simply spoke out and told the truth from his gut and with anguish. Nonetheless, Thoelking was allowed to walk under the Nazi military courts while our now-a-days USA Defense Department refuses to stop punishing the young Bradley Manning, even though, Manning has a post-My Lei Massacre set of American military courts backing him up in his very just and rationale decision to release documents that revealed that the USA was acting recklessly and dangerously in Iraq less than a decade ago.
Marjorie Cohn has explained that there are multiple reasons why Manning was almost forced to speak out and claim "Foul" to the entire system of War in Iraq and Afghanistan. Marjorie Cohn, professor at Thomas Jefferson School of Law and immediate past president of the National Lawyers Guild. She is also co-author of "Rules of Disengagement: The Politics and Honor of Military Dissent".
In her recent article "Bradley Manning's Legal Duty to Expose War Crimes", Cohn has detailed that for these following reasons soldiers, like Manning have needed to speak up--but have been kowtowed into doing nothing.
(1) Manning fulfilled his legal duty to report war crimes. He complied with his legal duty to obey lawful orders but also his legal duty to disobey unlawful orders. Section 499 of the Army Field Manual states, "Every violation of the law of war is a war crime." The law of war is contained in the Geneva Conventions.
(2) Article 85 of the First Protocol to the Geneva Conventions describes making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack as a grave breach. This meant that any crime needed to be prosecuted but to-date the DOD has not prosecuted nor has the federal government. Manning spoke up.
(3) Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions requires that the wounded be collected and cared for. Article 17 of the First Protocol states that the civilian population "shall be permitted, even on their own initiative, to collect and care for the wounded." That article also says, "No one shall be harmed . . . for such humanitarian acts." The firing on rescuers portrayed in the "Collateral Murder" video violates these provisions of Geneva. Manning was the one who released this video because the DOD was hiding it from those in courts asking for it.
(4) Section 27-10 of the Army Field Manual states that "maltreatment of dead bodies" is a war crime. When the Army jeep drove over the dead body[in one of the videos released by Manning], it violated this provision.
(5) Enshrined in the US Army Subject Schedule No. 27-1 is "the obligation to report all violations of the law of war." At his guilty plea hearing, Manning explained that he had gone to his chain of command and asked them to investigate the "Collateral Murder" video and other "war porn," but his superiors refused. "I was disturbed by the response to injured children," Manning stated. He was also bothered by the soldiers depicted in the video who "seemed to not value human life by referring to [their targets] as "dead bastards.' "
(6) The Uniform Code of Military Justice sets forth the duty of a service member to obey lawful orders. But that duty includes the concomitant duty to disobey unlawful orders. An order not to reveal classified information that contains evidence of war crimes would be an unlawful order. Manning had a legal duty to reveal the commission of war crimes.
American leaders and the American military need to be brought to justice for these crimes. The trial of Manning has now reached farcical stage or kangaroo court stage. American's and media need to get the government and DOD in line with basic rules and principles that they fail to follow in a so-called post-Nazi planet.