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Bradley Manning: One Year
Not exactly an anniversary to celebrate.
Today marks the one year anniversary of the incarceration of Bradley Manning. Manning hasn't been charged, only tortured. Barack Obama is still trying to soften him up, hoping he'll crack under pressure and start babbling nonsense about his connections to WikiLeaks and Julian Assange so Obama can issue an Imperial Decree for the arrest of the world's most important publisher.
Except that doesn't seem to happen. A diminutive 5 foot 2, the gay Manning is proving he's got more moxie than the empty-headed grunts who watch him and despise him. Jennifer Robinson says she can't believe how Julian Assange can survive with all the pressure put on him; but how about Bradley Manning? Manning deserves a medal just for putting up with Obama's oppressive regimen - and winning.
Bradley Manning is not the one behind the past year's leaks to Julian Assange. At least no one will ever know. And that's by design. That's the 'mere conduit' that Julian established at the outset. Whistleblowers aren't protected by WikiLeaks from oppressive forces - they're protected from WikiLeaks workers themselves by the submission system. Julian Assange can't know who sent the documents because he designed the system that way so he would never know.
The one thing Emperor Obama can know is that Bradley Manning seems to have indicated - to an ambulatory outlet for controlled substances known as Adrian Lamo (pronounced 'lame-oh') - that he was going to send stuff off to WikiLeaks. Lamo said at the time he was worried about US tourists overseas, how they would get help from their embassies and consulates, and as he was already a turned asset and as he couldn't imagine Manning getting more than a slap on the wrist, he might as well turn him in so he didn't get into trouble himself.
That slap on the wrist - what Lamo predicted would be six months incarceration tops - has now turned into a full year today still with no charges brought but with systematic torture applied, torture worthy of the epithet 'Gitmo' - or even 'Marianne Ny'.
And whilst Manning continues to wear his captors out, Lamo continues taking his drugs and shrugging off the universal contempt directed at him.
The PBS reporter Martin Smith has continually attempted to dismiss the idea that Bradley Manning spoke of his whistleblowing intentions not because he was aghast at what he saw in the documents but because of a troubled childhood. That's journalism worthy only of a Martin Smith. Smith wants to help the Obama Empire: he wants to help them define how things work in a 'post nine one one world'. So noble of him.
But the sad fact of the matter is that people around the world reacted precisely as Bradley Manning did when they found out the ugly truth about the Washington hoodlums. Bradley didn't need to have a troubled childhood or a wonky stepmother or a troubled gay love life or any of that nonsense to react to what he found as a decent fucking human being.
The world will never know whether Bradley Manning is the source of the news scoops of 2010, the biggest scoops in the history of the planet. But the world will know that Bradley Manning demonstrated integrity and courage in the face of one of the most hypocritical juntas ever to move into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
The world will know this and the world will remember.