And we can't forget about the obvious war criminals; how many of THEM do you think actually get any punishment whatsoever...let alone making headlines in public view? Sure, a couple here and there...thanks to whistleblowers. But I have suspicions those few are not even scratching the surface of the problem.
If the release of the information is destructive, then is it not whistleblowing-worthy?
Further, I don't consider anything released to be "just for the hell of it"--rather, the intent is that the U.S. be given appropriate insight into the games its elected officials are playing, and therefore demand accountability, and theoretically vote better choices into those positions that have been abused.
I have personally met two men in the 8+ years I've served, who were given similar ultimatums by a judge. Army or jail. I had thought that practice had been ruled illegal...? Apparently not. Those two are the only ones who ever admitted it openly...how many kept the facts hidden? Who knows...
Your last comments seem to imply that Bradley Manning has no sense of moral or ethical decency...that his actions in leaking the information was a vengeful act. Is it possible that Bradley simply came to grips with an ethical dilemma??? Is it possible that he KNEW (as I know, being an active service member myself) that if he took his concerns of war crimes to his chain of command, the case would be killed? Is it possible that Bradley is a better person than you OR me, combined? I think so.
Bradley Manning, in his own words, saw through the system. He saw his nation, prostrate to the disinformation of a deceptive government and its puppet media, and he did chose to do the right thing. Give the people the facts. Pure, undiluted, un-spun FACTS.