Punishment before the Trial -- Solitary Confinement
Manning has now been in prison in solitary confinement for seven months; yet, neither the U.S. military nor the U.S. government has indicted him for any offense. Manning essentially is being treated by the U.S. government as an American citizen "enemy combatant."
Manning's treatment in detention, pre-trial confinement in prison is cruel and unusual. He is being kept in solitary confinement -- alone in a cell for 23 hours a day. He is forbidden to exercise in his cell. He is deprived of sleep. He is not given a pillow or sheets for his steel bed, although recently after publicity about the conditions in the prison, he was given a mattress for the bed. Prison medical personnel now "administer regular doses of anti-depressants to Manning to prevent his brain from snapping from the effects of this isolation."
US Soldier Treated as Those Detained in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo
The U.S. military's treatment of Manning is tragically consistent with its treatment of persons detained in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo. America's military uses harsh conditions and torture -- physical and mental -- for those who have not been convicted of any crimes in order to break the person to provide whatever information the military wants to receive. This type of treatment is inhumane, immoral and wrong for those in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo and it is wrong for Bradley Manning.
Nothing to be Proud of!
President Obama and the US Military should hang their heads in shame. There is nothing in this inhumane tragedy to be proud of -- especially by a man who professed to believe that "Government whistleblowers are part of a healthy democracy and must be protected from reprisal."
If you are as offended by all of this as I am, Raise Hell for Bradley Manning, the undeclared American "enemy combatant." Contribute to Manning's defense fund at www.couragetoresist.org