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FORT MEADE, Maryland (Reuters) - An American Army intelligence analyst suspected of being behind the largest leak of classified documents in U.S. history made his first court appearance on Friday, sitting stone-faced as military prosecutors launched their case against him. Private First Class Bradley Manning, 23, faces charges including aiding the enemy, which could send him to prison for life. He is suspected of being the source of documents that eventually were released on the Internet by WikiLeaks -- data dumps that Washington said jeopardized national security.
Prosecutors aim to show there is sufficient evidence to bring Manning to trial at a general court martial on 22 criminal charges. If convicted of all counts, Manning would face a maximum punishment of life imprisonment, reduction in rank to the lowest enlisted pay grade, forfeiture of all pay and allowances and a dishonorable discharge, the Army said in a statement. The most serious charge, aiding the enemy, is a capital crime that carries the death penalty but the Army has indicated it does not plan to seek that punishment. For much of the time since his detention beginning in May 2010 in Iraq, Manning was held on a charge of improperly obtaining a classified gunsight video that showed a 2007 helicopter attack that killed a dozen people in Iraq, including two Reuters journalists. The video was released publicly by WikiLeaks.
Originally posted by ludshed
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
Wow, its good to see someone from misery believes in the freedoms this country used to represent. Guilty until proven innocent huh. Good thing idiots from ats have zero pull in the real world, a lot of people would just be shot on sight for suspicion alone. Bravo, you're a fine contribution to this state.
Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,
Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,
Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law,
A US Army legal expert told reporters the court could rule on Manning's appeal as early as Saturday, when the pre-trial hearing is set to reconvene at 10:00 am (1500 GMT). It could last up to a week.
Manning, who turns 24 on Saturday, spoke several times during the hearing, repeatedly answering "Yes, sir" when asked by Almanza whether he understood the charges, was aware of his rights and was satisfied with his defense counsel.
Originally posted by Wrabbit2000
I don't see much to be on the fence about myself. If he had a conscience problem with something he was doing, he had options to make that known and work to get out of his position. However, while he freely accepted the trust placed in him, he was under an oath of loyalty he freely took and those around him would have assumed he continued to hold as meaningful. Instead he was being a traitor and a weasel, slipping everything he could literally hoover up out the back door.
He didn't publish the Pentagon Papers or something similar where he knew what he was putting out. He just hoovered EVERYTHING within his access in his job, regardless of what names or operational details it might contain. It took entire staffs of people weeks working full time to get through it all. There is no way he could have known even a small %..so there isn't even a half way decent comparison to Daniel Ellsberg.
I don't blame Assange and Wikileaks. It was reporting a story and leak as that site was designed to do by the time it got to that point...but the original source is a whole different animal...and I hope this individual dies in military prison, a very old man. We'll never even know how much damage his leaks actually have done and neither did he as he leaked them. That really is the whole point to this.
Originally posted by OmegaLogos
reply to post by Wrabbit2000
Personal Disclosure: Does "Innocent unless proven guilty" ring a bell?
We're here to deny ignorance, not display ignorance!