10 March 2011

Article 138 Complaint

On March 1, 2011, the Quantico Base Commander, Colonel Daniel J. Choike, denied PFC Manning's request to be removed from Prevention of Injury Watch and to have his custody classification reduced from Maximum to Medium Detention-In.  The defense filed the following rebuttal to Colonel Choike's response.  Colonel Choike will now complete his action on the Article 138 complaint, and then forward the proceedings to the Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus, for his final review.  If Secretary Mabus denies PFC Manning's requested relief, the defense will file a Writ of Habeas Corpus to the Army Court of Criminal Appeals.

44 comments:

  1. Can you not file some sort of extraordinary writ - say mandamus - directly to Army Court of Criminal Appeals or Supreme Court?

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  2. Thank you for your advocacy of this, the most important young man of this era.

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  3. How can we judge other country's and their leaders when we allow this? Are we really any better?

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  4. It continues to be bizarre...watching an America that styles itself as an advocate of justice mistreating someone who allegedly acted in support of aiding the process of justice. At the same time, America does nothing about the crimes that have been revealed by the leaks attributed to Manning. The US govt is doubling down on behaving like a corrupt amoral state.

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  5. Please convey my love to Bradley.
    I am a fellow citizen and am forever indebted to Bradley.
    I pray we can extract him from the custody of these sadistic sociopathic captors of his before they destroy him further.
    I am appalled that we are speaking of agents of the U.S. as the perpetrators of these unAmerican activities.

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  6. Good luck! The whole world is watching.

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  7. I am appalled by how we treat a citizen. Torture has become a common tool for our government. They got so used to it in GTMO, CIA prisons, and Abu Ghraib that now they use torture on US soil on a US citizen. This is more than tragic, this is dangerous.

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  8. Good luck w/ your efforts on behalf of PfC Manning. Seriously. What's happening is insane and I hope to God that someone in a position of authority ends this madness and provides for Manning to be treated with respect and dignity. We are not the SS.

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  9. Explanation of Article 138 is available at http://usmilitary.about.com/cs/militarylaw/a/article138.htm and it includes the issue of bypassing the chain of command - permitted on in the Air Force

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  10. Thank you Mr Coombs for making public the full 11 pages of the rebuttal you assisted Bradley Manning in submitting.

    The magnitude of the impact of "military justice" needs to be seen by those who consider going into the military or re-enlisting.

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  11. Thank you for your work. Bradley Manning is a True American Hero. As an American citizen I am Outraged by the actions of my government and the treatment of one of their own citizens and soldiers. Keep up the fight, truth and justice is on your side.

    www.politicalfailblog.com

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  12. Bradley Manning's treatment is a crime against humanity

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  13. So now they are making him wear a dress, it just keeps getting worse! What kind of garment meant for the suicidal is so uncomfortable? Are you sure this is really not a torture garment? Please get the manufacturer and model and style and verify that what Manning is actually being forced to wear is what they claim and that is a legitimate garment used at mental health facilities.

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  14. It's a sad day for the US when we treat (alleged) terrorists better at Gitmo than one of our own at Quantico.

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  15. Yes, I am grateful to you, too. Please give him the very best defense possible. Perhaps you have seen the ridiculous Forbes blogger's post re Bradley, I responded thusly:

    ladybroadoak
    STRANGE article. You fail to mention that they have charged with a death penalty offense. Interesting omission since it happened before the stripping.

    Also, you don’t seem to think that stripping a person naked – in ANY circumstance – is totally wrong. He is watched in person and on video camera the entire time.

    He stripped the US naked; therefore, he must be stripped naked.
    He exposed WAR CRIMES (and we surely don’t know if he released the cables, not determined !!) – so now HE must be the criminal.

    This is an Orwellian world, so to get to the TRUTH about government transparency over WAR CRIMES.

    WE ARE BRADLEY MANNING, we want truth.
    I AM BRADLEY MANNING, I need truth.

    Why do not mention that a US Congressman is being denied access, btw?

    We already know that anyone sticking up for Bradley is going to be made to look like a “fringy” – we know about the H.B.Gary contract/plan. All our credibility is to be taken away so those sitting on the fence do not listen to ‘our’ message. This is a gross HUMAN RIGHTS violation. The US government is making the US look as stoopid as it is possible to look by doing these extrajudicial shenanigans against someone NOT convicted of anything at all. They wish to subvert the court of public opinion. But we shall keep speaking

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  16. If we in Australia treat our animals like Mr Manning has treated, we would most likely be put in jail for cruelty. Can it not be proven that psychological torture can permanently damage the mental capacity of a person? We are talking about textbook techniques, strip searches, sleep regimes, isolation, sensory deprivation etc.

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  17. Where is the reply from the military to the original complaint that you and Manning submitted weeks ago? Without their statement, your appeal doesn't make much sense and isn't really relevant. The person reviewing your original complaint would have also had access to all the records your appeal cites.

    I think it's awfully convenient that you fail to include the reason for the military's denial of status change in any of your postings, so that we can't determine for ourselves if there are other things besides the recommendations of the psychiatrists about Manning's current mental status that are affecting their insistence on keeping him on a POI watch. And I believe he's a MCD status because of the seriousness of the crime he's accused of committing, and so that's not going to change due to a request from you - the only way that'd change would be if he were somehow to be charged with something other than endangering national security, and you know that's not happenin'!

    So, please, tell us why they said they were rejecting the request to remove the POI. Otherwise, you're failing to fully inform us, and that makes it look like you're hiding something - well, that is, to anyone who's more interested in the truth than in pushing an agenda.

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  18. Free Bradley Manning - US Ambassador Residence, Lisboa 2011

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xv2JlTztEaE

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  19. Please convey to Bradley: we all know they are trying to fuck you up, so stay strong. The world is (still) watching ...

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  20. I have been following Bradley's story as covered in the Guardian online. Let him know that a friend in Canada is supporting him. Keep up the good work.

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  21. @ Anonymous March 10, 2011 9:56 PM

    "And I believe he's a MCD status because of the seriousness of the crime he's accused of committing, and so that's not going to change due to a request from you - the only way that'd change would be if he were somehow to be charged with something other than endangering national security, and you know that's not happenin'!"

    Except MCD status is supposed to apply to those who show a likelihood of escaping under Medium Custody Level and more lenient levels of detention. AFAIK, Bradley hasn't shown such a likelihood.

    "So, please, tell us why they said they were rejecting the request to remove the POI."

    How do you know the Military authorities told Attorney Coombs the reason why they rejected the request? We don't know that!

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  22. The Pentagon states that Pfc Bradley Manning *chose* to stand at attention utterly naked instead of being required to.

    Link:

    http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/2011/03/exclusive-bradley-mannings-father-discusses-sons-incarceration-with-frontline.html

    Unless proven otherwise, I call damned-double-LIES on that statement.

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  23. Well, the president is now on the record as supporting the Marines in their mistreatment of PFC Manning. Man, I'm tired of torture-fetish war criminals in the Oval Office.

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  24. No, ed-m, you're wrong! Bradley Manning is a perfect example of one of the reasons that Maximum Custody status is used. It's not just for people who are an extra escape risk - it's for people who, if they did escape, could pose a risk to national security. Given the charges he's facing, he's a perfect candidate for that status! Really, you should look things up before you assert things that aren't true!

    And how do I know that they told him why they were rejected the request? Because that's what happens when a request is denied. They give a reason or multiple reasons. And if you read their appeal, you'll see that they were replying to specific things in that rejection. The failure to provide that rejection is significant.

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  25. Stop torturing the guy and try him by court martial or release him.

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  26. Uh-huh. Must say very professional, tough and brave guards/military staff. I'm impressed ! >sarcasm<

    Let's hope the Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus, doesn't have a God complex and isn't a sadist either, but DOES have the balls to finally put an end to Bradley's unjustified and unduly harsh treatment!

    Mark

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  27. I agree with the manner in which the government is holding Pvt. Manning.

    Why?

    Because if Pvt Manning were to succeed in taking in his own life in custody, nobody..and I mean nobody, would believe it was suicide.

    Regardless of proof to the contrary, the same folks who condemn the government's treatment of Pvt Manning would proclaim that the military killed the young Pvt in custody to "shut him up", and keep him from "really spilling the beans in court."

    The government and military's handling of the defendant is more than justified. If Pvt Manning were to fall down the stairs, Glenn Greenwald would claim that Obama made it happen...

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  28. Obama wins and all the anti-war protesters all go home. OUR GUY WON! WAR'S OVER! Now they treat one of our own fellow Americans, (Who has not been charged with ANYTHING) this way. Is this the country you want your kids to grow up in? The "soldiers" if in fact they are from our military, that are treating Mr. Manning this way should be tried as war criminals along with Obama, Bush and the whole lot. The only thing that has changed since Obama is the name on the door.

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  29. @ anonymous - March 11, 2011 7:43 PM
    "Bradley Manning is a perfect example of one of the reasons that Maximum Custody status is used. It's not just for people who are an extra escape risk - it's for people who, if they did escape, could pose a risk to national security. Given the charges he's facing, he's a perfect candidate for that status!"

    Uhm ... does it not make you at least a little suspicious that it took 8 month after his arrest to come up with this "aiding the enemy" charge, amongst others? It also does not make you at least a little suspicious that even after such a long time they still fail to tie him to Wikileaks/Assange? It also does not bother you and doesn't make you at least a little suspicious that your gov comes up with "threatens our national security" that often? It also does not make you at least a little suspicious that your government has obviously a tendency to over-classify information and as such withholds a lot of informations – be it important or not – from you? ... under the disguise of "national security", of course! Just a few out of MANY MANY MANY questions ... and just wondering.

    Well, we here have learned that "will threaten our national security" is the all-purpose get out clause which only means, something nasty has happened but we don't wanna talk about it 'cos somebody high up may have to take the blame. In order to make this convenient national security excuse work you only have to create an atmosphere of fear and play the panic-card whenever it suits your agenda, which is what happens since 9/11 and people buy it, even worse they blindly join the governments/politicians chant and quickly shift focus and condemnation on a convenient target, a low ranking soldier, and thus they pave the way for their own government to cover up their own blunder and serve their own governments agenda to distract attention away from what should've actually led to HUGE debates ... all the lies, wrongdoings or even (war-) crimes that got revealed. Any dictator were glad of having such loyal non-questioning citizens! Just saying ...

    Mark (GER)

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  30. **Uhm ... does it not make you at least a little suspicious that it took 8 month after his arrest to come up with this "aiding the enemy" charge, amongst others?**

    No, not at all, because I don't see conspiracy theories lurking behind every door! The fact is that it takes a while to investigate computer crimes. He had already been charged with some crimes back when he was first detained! They did a thourough search of all his computer activities so they could determine when, where and how he'd stolen material. It took a while for them to do that. They couldn't simply take his admissions to a couple of other hackers that he'd stolen material - they had to document how they traced back his actions to document that he was almost certainly he who did this, and I'm sure that's what they were doing! Unless you think that this conspiracy has many members, all of them determined to lie about his guilt, that is!

    **It also does not make you at least a little suspicious that even after such a long time they still fail to tie him to Wikileaks/Assange?**

    Nope. What he did from private computers isn't nearly as traceable as what he did when he stole classified info from gov't computers. What they almost certainly DO know is that he gave those documents to WikiLeaks, but they likely can't prove it in order to charge Julian Assange.

    It also does not bother you and doesn't make you at least a little suspicious that your gov comes up with "threatens our national security" that often?

    Releasing tens of thousands of classified documents almost certainly threatens our national security! It's virtually certain that Manning did this, and so him being charged with crimes he's almost certainly guilty of doesn't bother me in the least - why should it? We aren't talking about any other event in US history - the fact that the charge has been inaccurately used in the past doesn't mean that it's being unfairly used in this case! That's your CT working overtime! Not all "forced nudity" is bad. Prisons and mental health facilities used forced nudity at times in appropriate ways - the fact that it can also be used inappropriately doesn't mean that this time it was used inappropriately! That's a leap you make that can't be sustained with the evidence we have, because we have no evidence that it's been used in the wrong way - it was used after he exhibited behavior.

    It's undeniable that Bush's administration horribly misused the "national security" threat, and violated the law in many ways. That doesn't mean that the Obama administration is doing that now. Manning was a low-ranking member of the military, and they need to figure out how to prevent someone else from doing what he did, and those whose careless procedures allowed it to happen should be disciplined/fired/educated! None of that excuses what Manning almost certainly did. The idea that I don't question our gov't is unsupportable, given my comments. You can't legitimately come away with that interpretation about me given what I've written, yet you did. The flaw is yours.

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  31. (A letter sent to the President and other Officials.)

    Mr. President,

    Please properly investigate the possible/probable inhumane treatment of PFC Bradley E. Manning, being detained in the United States Marine Corps Quantico Brig in Virginia.

    Common sense tells the conscience that possible/probable inhumane treatment must be fully investigated.

    Facts of the case, as reported by David Coombs, PFC Manning's defense lawyer, indicate that:

    Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell has stated that PFC Manning has been a model detainee.

    Brig forensic psychiatrists have continually stated that there's no mental health justifications for the extreme conditions of PFC Manning's detainment.

    Quantico Commander Colonel Daniel Choike has denied a fair request by PFC Manning to be removed from the medically unnecessary extreme current conditions of his detainment.

    Chief Warrant Officer Denise Barnes used a sarcastic remark made by PFC Manning, (referring to the waistband in his shorts), as an unfair convenient excuse to unjustifiably further increase the extreme conditions of PFC Manning's detainment, with no contact of, nor recommendations from, the mental health staff to do so.

    The Brig (excluding mental health staff as they don't recommend the extreme current conditions) is using loopholes in policies to unfairly increase the extreme conditions of PFC Manning's detainment.

    These extreme conditions, inconsistencies between policies, and possible/probable abuse of authority, must be investigated.

    The communication and exercise and sleep of PFC Manning is being severely restricted to the viable concern of inhumaneness.

    Hence, to now rely on the sole assurance of those allegedly behind this alleged mistreatment, does nothing to justly bring the truth to light.

    Our country's principles of conscientiousness, deserve to have a serious matter such as this be fully investigated by unbiased independent third parties.

    Again, please properly investigate the possible/probable inhumane treatment of PFC Bradley Manning.

    Anything less falls short of truth and justness, and hence the American way, as your words so often convey.

    Sincerely,

    Sally Kline

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  32. David, thank you for representing Manning. I am very disturbed by his treatment and am doing my best to educate others here in Los Angeles.

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  33. @anonymous - March 13, 2011 5:57 PM - Part 1
    Yep, I'm well-aware of the fact that it takes time to find out WHEN, WHERE, HOW and WHAT exactly was stolen by WHOM. And yep, he had already been charged with some ... article when he was first detained. Nonetheless, since they say they still fail to tie him to WikiLeaks they do NOT almost certainly know that it was Manning who gave those documents to WikiLeaks. So, either they lie for whatever reason and CAN tie him to WikiLeaks but if that were the case why haven't they already made a request on extradition of Assange (I mean they made no secret of their determination/eagerness to get this guy) - doesn't make sense, OR since they need to provide a complete chain of evidence and at this point the chain of evidence obviously breaks and an allegedly offered plea bargain got refused and they need to make sure to "succeed" ... isn't it possible that they simply don't have (enough) evidences to jail him for a very long time/rest of his life and so they just try to increase the pressure on Manning more and more by subjecting him to such unduly harsh treatment and finally coming up with this "aiding the enemy" charge in order to get him into a plea bargain or something? I don't know, neither do you! But fact is, it can't be excluded with certainty ! I, personally, can't help it but say what's going on looks like ... softening him up , let alone making an example of him and thus trying to ensure that NOBODY EVER even considers doing what they accuse him of.

    You're saying releasing tens of thousands of classified documents almost certainly threatens your national security. What is your statement based on? If it's just due to the number of documents it's just an assumption on your part!

    Also, what makes you think that it's virtually certain that Manning did this? What is it based on? Simply because he's being charged of it? Fact is, you do not know what Manning almost certainly did because you do not know the evidences ... unless you're part of the prosecution team either way, neither do I.

    And for "the fact that the charge has been inaccurately used in the past doesn't mean that it's being unfairly used in this case", true but it also can't be excluded !

    Mark (GER)

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  34. @anonymous - March 13, 2011 5:57 PM - Part 2
    As for "forced nudity". Uhm, do I get it right that you basically rather believe what your gov/DoD or some military staff say about that incident than what a psychologist says who ACTUALLY knows what he's talking about? How can you tell it was used after he "exhibited behavior" when even the Brig psychiatrist said that his statement was in no way prompted by a psychiatric condition and assessed him as a "low risk and requiring only routine outpatient follow-up [with] no need for ... closer clinical observation."?

    Also, if everything's so fine over there and they don't have ANYTHING to hide then why is it obviously THAT difficult for Congressman Dennis Kucinich to be able to visit Bradley Manning? Only bureaucratic hurdles? One would assume that he, as a member of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, would have gotten the okay in the meantime after repeatedly reguests and such a long time. Otherwise, why exists a Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in the first place if someone who is a member gets hindered/prevented (for whatever reason) from doing his duty to conduct effective oversight? Well, actually I'd say being a member of such a committee he shouldn't need an okay in the first place and just be able to visit him whenever he wants even its the military.

    But the most "funny" thing is, that they say they only want to prevent him from harming himself when in fact the way he's being treated (prolonged solitary confinement) is well-known for causing mental disorders or, actually needless to say, that it is almost certain exacerbating already existing mental health problems.

    Side-note, I'm not into CT's at all.

    Mark (GER)

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  35. I am praying for PFC Manning. The reader response to the stories I have read about him (mainly progressive publications) has been overwhelmingly positive and supportive.

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  36. Mark GER, you just aren't being honest. When classified documents are leaked and then published, the US Gov't is going to go after the person they have reason to believe that stole the documents as well as the person/group that publicly displayed those documents. Your implication that they have no reason to go after both Manning and Assange is ridiculous! They don't have to tie him to WikiLeaks in order for him to be found guilty - the stealing of the documents and the resultant leaking is sufficient.

    And yes, clearly, in this case, you are allowing yourself to believe in theories that aren't supported by any facts - that's the very definition of CT. There is only supposition that Manning is being treated the way he's being treated in an attempt to coerce him to behave in a different way than what he'd choose to do without that coercion/torture, but there's absolutely no evidence whatsoever that it's the case! The fact that it "looks like" it could be them trying to soften Manning up doesn't mean that it IS that - it could be, and the evidence we have tells us that it is simply them holding someone who is charged with endangering national security who is also fragile when it comes to his mental health!

    Believing that, rather than believing the evidence we do have, that Manning is being stripped at nighttime because he suggested that he could use the elastic from his boxers to hurt/kill himself at nighttime, is CT! Anyone who has been put on a suicide watch 3 times over 8 months, anyone who was in such a fragile and questionable mental health status before he was ever arrested that the military removed the bolt from his rifle in a war zone, that kind of a person is fully eligible to be treated like someone who could, at any time, revert into a pattern of behavior that could include a desire to commit suicide. Since he has shown that propensity to be suicidal, the fact that he might not, at this very minute, be suicidal doesn't mean that he shouldn't be closely guarded at all times, and shouldn't have his boxers removed at night after he's basically threatened his guards that he could use them to hurt himself!

    That's the evidence we have. It wasn't some random act on the part of the brig - it was in direct response to behavior he exhibited!

    And with regard to what the psychologists have said? All we have is the lawyer's cropped comments to rely upon, rather than the full findings. On top of that, the fact that the therapist has said that he is a "low risk" - not "no" risk, but a "low risk" - doesn't change the facts that I explained above - that he has shown that he can suddenly become suicidal and a threat to his own well being multiple times in 8 months, and that he was a risk to his own well being before he was arrested as well! It's his pattern of behavior that is causing their reactions to that pattern of behavior! The fact that there's no evidence otherwise should lead to the same conclusions that I have reached. My conclusion is not that there's no chance that the military is torturing him in order to gain info - it's that there's NO EVIDENCE that they're doing that, and so concluding that he's being tortured is BOGUS! It's not my argument that is full of holes here - it's yours, and those like you.

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  37. And when it was shown that he and his lawyer would dishonestly portray what was going on (Manning's whine that he had to stand in the doorway and be humiliated - when the evidence we have is that he wasn't required to stand in the doorway at all!), the military said "fine, you want to pretend that you're being humiliated, on purpose, in an effort to coerce you to behave in a certain way? Good - we'll give you something to cover yourself up with. You likely would have been more comfortable sleeping in the nude, and then getting your clothes back in the morning, but we aren't going to allow you to pretend that we're abusing you by trying to ensure that you don't hurt yourself. We'll continue to try to ensure that you don't hurt yourself by denying you the 'weapon' you asserted you could use to hurt yourself at nighttime, but we won't allow you to remain naked at night - because our effort wasn't to make you be naked - it was to make you be as safe as possible!"

    I mean, really, all I'm doing here is exposing the truth and discussing the evidence we have. It ain't rocket science to see that, given the brig's behavior, making Manning be naked wasn't done in an effort to humiliate him or coerce him. It was done to stop him from carrying out a suggested method of hurting himself - a suggestion he himself made, confirmed by his own lawyer!

    If you check out what mental health professionals say, they'll tell you that one can't ignore comments like that, and that one should remove the potential threatening item (the boxers).

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  38. We wish Bradley Manning and his family all the best, the people of the world should be the judge, the truth must be told.
    (Kulin Nation of our Original People)- Australia

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  39. @anonymous -- Part1
    "Your implication that they have no reason to go after both Manning and Assange is ridiculous!"

    Huh? Where did you get that from?
    I said they need to be able to connect Manning to WikiLeaks for the charges of "aiding the enemy", for instance. If they can't tie him to WL they can't prove that it was him who gave those documents to WL and the "aiding the enemy" charge, for instance, is just based on assumptions. Simply because the documents showed up there doesn't mean WL got them from Manning! Hence, if they can't tie him to WL the chain of evidence breaks at this point. Consequently, each charge that is build on the ASSUMPTION that it was him who gave those documents to WL should go south in a heart-beat! If it's enough in the Military Justice System to simply put two and two together – like, it showed up on WL and we can prove that he downloaded those documents ...consequently it must be him who gave it to WL WITHOUT presenting evidences that prove without a reasonable doubt that it was him (and again, for that they need to be able to tie him to WL), then it will of course suffice to jail him for the rest of life but NOT because his guilt has been proven. It will suffice to jail him for the rest of his life because of a system where assumptions suffice (which ensures a guilty verdict on a charge) rather than evidences. Just being able to prove that he downloaded classified documents without permission and some other little offenses will hardly be enough to jail him for the rest of his life. Hence ...

    I also said they need to be able to connect Manning to WL in order to be able to file charges against Assange and be able to make a request on extradition. If they want to go after WL/Assange simply because WL publicy displayed those documents they also would've to go after the NYT since they also published those documents ...which they found out they can't. So, they need to look for a charge where they can get Assange but not the NYT and for that they need to be able to connect Manning to WikiLeaks/Assange.
    That's why I also asked why they haven't already made a request on extradition of Assange since they made no secret of their determination/eagerness to get this guy if they actually can tie Manning to WL. (explanation above). The Assange case depends on Manning. That was meant. Maybe I wasn't clear enough.

    Mark

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  40. Anonymous Part 2
    As for Manning, it was a sarcastic remark which wasn't surprising considering the circumstances, is all. The guards just took it seriously and the Commander decided for whatever reason to rather rely on what the guards told him than on a psychiatrist who ACTUALLY has the skills to evaluate Manning. Since it was not done based on a psychiatric standpoint it was arbitrariness! You also forgot to mention that even the military stated that they couldn't give him his clothes back prior the morning inspection where he had to stand a parade rest because that would mean they had to wake him up earlier and that this is not possible with the result that he had no choice but to present himself naked. So, they KNEW that he had to present himself naked already the evening before! AFTER it came out they offered him some kind of smock and he had the choice to either wear it over night or not to wear it with the previous consequence and so he chose to wear it.

    I know that mental health professionals say that one can't ignore comments like that. Nonetheless thing is, the theory isn't a prayer book that you just follow blindly without considering the circumstances that causes a person to make such a remark and also without having the skills to actually evaluate this person! What matters is what the Brig psychiatrist say who actually see and talk to him and thus are able to evaluate Manning! NOTHING justifies to simply override the repeated Brig psychiatrist's recommendations over and over again simply because the guards may report to the Commander otherwise! If a psychiatrist, as an expert on this field, isn't the person you can rely on in this regard how can you rely on the statements of some military staff / guards who have NO idea what they're talking about?! If the Brig psychiatrist would recommend to continue with those conditions - he's the guy who should know. But he repeatedly said otherwise, except once!

    Also, if you read the rebuttal and are at least a little objective you can't help but come to the conclusion that what A did on 18 Jan was punishment because Manning dared to respond to A's "I'm the Commander..... etc." remark “you still have to follow Brig procedures.” and “everyone has a boss that they have to answer to." (this kind of behavior is called mouthing off, something military guys do not like at all! No secret. That it was only the truth doesn't matter.) However, NOTHING can justify A's order to put him on Suicide Risk Status after that incident!

    And so there's only ONE incident left in 8 month where it was recommended to remain him on POI (main criteria that it seemed he was not doing well).

    I get the impression that you think the way he's being treated/held is okay in order to prevent him from harming himself even though the way he's being treated (prolonged solitary confinement in particular) is well-known for causing mental disorders or, actually needless to say, that it is almost certain exacerbating already existing mental health problems.

    You say your conclusion is not that there's no chance that the military is torturing him in order to gain info - it's that there's NO EVIDENCE that they're doing that. Well, with all the secrecy that is going on – which is btw a precondition for abuse – no surprise that there're no evidences, don't you think? How could be? Just look at Kucinich's repeated requests to visit with Manning. Once again,if everything's fine why is it obviously THAT difficult for him to get the okay to visit Bradley Manning? Only bureaucratic hurdles? Very odd, to say the least.

    The way I see it, bottom line, you give your gov/military the benefit of the doubt whereas I don't.

    Mark

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  41. Following the exchange between two commenters debating the rationale for Manning's treatment--neither addresses the widely-known, and most critical aspect of the brig commanders' (two, so far) decisions. That is, two commanders now have chosen to disregard the recommendation of the brig psychatrist(a Marine Corps officer) that he be removed from POI status, after every interview.

    Neither commander has bothered to document behavior or observations that would justify their decisions--if they chose to represent themselves as better judges of Manning's state of mind than the brig's own Marine Corps psychiatrist.

    This leads me, and many others, to the conclusion that his treatment has been established at much higher levels. Now, the debate should be, why?

    Also, a DOD Directive states that a prisoner can be held in another service's detention to keep him or her as close as possible to the site of future trial, for the convenience of the prosecution. Manning is a member of the U.S. Army and will be tried as such, presumably in an Army installation. Why, then, is Quantico considered closest to the site of prosecution? Or was this an arbitrary decision to keep him close to DC and/or in a Marine Corps brig rather than U.S. Army? And why?

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  42. Mark GER wrote

    "Your implication that they have no reason to go after both Manning and Assange is ridiculous!"

    Huh? Where did you get that from?
    I said they need to be able to connect Manning to WikiLeaks for the charges of "aiding the enemy", for instance.

    ***

    They don't need to connect Manning directly with Wikileaks at all to sustain that charge! You're wrong as wrong can be.

    People are convicted without concrete evidence of their guilt all the time! All that's required is that there not be any reasonable doubt in the jury's mind that the accused person committed the crime. The government will present evidence that will show that someone with Manning's ID, password, and that looked just like him accessed computers and downloaded info, and that it was later seen on WikiLeaks. They'll show that that info was not downloaded and accessed illegally by anyone else, by documenting that they checked everyone that did access that info, and ensured that it wasn't downloaded by others. They'll show that the enemy could have used/still could use the info released, and the jury will almost certainly decide that he did it - that there's no reasonable doubt in their minds that someone else might have done it. That's the way trials work all the time. It's rare that we have definitive proof that someone committed a crime, yet people are convicted all the time. Your assertion that it'd be impossible for a jury to believe that Manning leaked the documents is without foundation.

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  43. I'm late. Sorry.
    Uh-huh. Thanks for the reminder!Looking at it from an American perspective you're right. Looked at it from a non-American perspective, live in a country where people do not get convicted without concrete evidence all the time (it happens but it's the exception and those cases are HIGHLY controversial). Of course this is not relevant here, just autopilot was on. My bad! BUT, and that is a big but, simply because this happens in your country all the time doesn't make it right!!!

    But of course the jury will almost certainly decide that he's guilty of all charges! The groundwork has already been laid by several individuals to ensure that there isn't "any reasonable doubt" anymore in the jury's mind – whoever this might be – and since it's safe to say that the trial will be held in secret because of ... guess what ... "will threaten our national security" ... it's unchecked by the media and nobody will ever know and so "determine his guilt without a reasonable doubt" is a no-brainer. That's what is wanted! I mean how would the gov look like if a jury dared to acquit a guy who already got openly labeled a traitor, a threat to the US's national security and such by several politicians/brass ...


    @ his lawyer David Coombs; I can also imagine that being a lawyer in cases like that, actually doing your best to serve your client leads to ... let's say ... tensions between the lawyer and everyone else.
    I DO think that this young soldier certainly does NOT deserve the dealth penalty nor does he deserve life in prison, let alone this pre-trial treatment! What he actually deserves is the best defense!!! And I hope you will never leave him in the lurch and continue to fight for him – no matter how difficult or even uncomfortable it might be!
    Furthermore I hope you can make the impossible possible!! Well, hope is the last to die! Wish you the strength and persistence etc. needed for cases like that!!!

    Mark (GER)

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  44. Manning is criticized for releasing the information to the public rather than to use the prescribed "Military Whistleblowers Act" which has a chain of command approved: eg. those to be told about the soldier's concerns. The problem with it is that those who are authorized to hear from the soldier about horrendous wrongdoings, will do nothing. They are all part of the cover. So this goes back to the old saying," if a man blows a whistle in a closet of old suits, is there really any sound?" Pvt. Manning made 'hearing-the-whistle' his first concern, and damn the torpedoes. Sweet ! Speak truth to power. Yes we can. This is how we will prevail over TPTB and the NWO corporate elite. And they will snivel. Power to the people. Shine on.

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