Wednesday, August 25, 2010

How low we’ve come in persecuting heroes of truth

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Bradley Manning
Bradley Manning
[source: The Socialist WebZine]

I originally posted this on Twitter, but I thought it was worth reposting here.

Inspired by this WikiLeaks tweet:

Three days of global action to support alleged WikiLeaks source Bradley Manning Sep 16-19!

Lemme see if I get this straight … We need global action to help a man who’s imprisoned, and will possibly be sentenced, by the US Military – and whose “crime” is, allegedly, helping a whistleblower group spread the truth about wrongdoing, lawbreaking and possible war crimes?

Just how fucked up has the US government and military become, exactly, when they punish people and treat them as traitors or terrorists, simply for telling the truth about wrongdoing, lawbreaking and possible war crimes?

I understand that OpSec (Operational Security) demands that there be certain types of information left out of public knowledge for the sake of security; that much is reasonable and I respect that. But covering up evidence of screw-ups, corruption, or massacres, and the likes, is a wholly different story. I’m not calling for the military to broadcast each failure they make. I’m just saying that they could start by not demonizing those who try and make them minimally accountable. Baby steps.

As a soldier, you should be willing (and, in an ideal world, able) to break whatever oaths you take if it means doing the right thing. Oaths mean absolutely nothing if they actually prohibit you from following the very ideals and concepts upon which your country, and by extension, its military, was founded upon. If your job as a soldier actually forces you to do the opposite of what your country and people stand for, then there’s a problem and you probably shouldn’t be in such a position.

Just some ramblings on idealistic ideology.