Targeting Whistleblowers: Truth Telling Endangered - by Stephen Lendman
On April 16, journalist John Cole wrote:
"The message is clear - you torture people and then destroy the evidence, and you get off without so much as a sternly worded letter. If you are a whistle blower outlining criminal behavior by the government, you get prosecuted."
In fact, it's worse. Under Bush, torture was official policy. It remains so under Obama who absolved CIA torturers, despite unequivocal evidence of their guilt. But leaking it risks criminal prosecution for revealing state secrets and endangering national security.
On June 7, New York Times writer Elisabeth Bumiller headlined, "Army Leak Suspect Is Turned In, by Ex-Hacker," explaining that US Army intelligence analyst Specialist Bradley Manning told Adrian Lamo that he leaked the following materials to WikiLeaks:
-- "260,000 classified United States diplomatic cables and video of a (US) airstrike in Afghanistan that killed 97 civilians last year," and
-- an "explosive (39 minute) video of an American helicopter attack in Baghdad that left 12 people dead, including two employees of the Reuters news agency." Manning called it "collateral murder," a crime he felt obliged to expose.
Lamo told the military, saying "I outed Brad Manning as an alleged leaker out of duty. I would never (and have never) outed an Ordinary Decent Criminal. There's a difference." He didn't explain or how any criminal can be decent.