Bradley Manning Pleads Guilty To Some Charges: Reveals That Major Newspapers Ignored His Offer To Leak Collateral Murder Video

from the that's-big-news dept

As he made clear last year, Bradley Manning has now pled guilty to 10 of the lesser charges brought against him, while pleading not guilty to 12 charges, including the more serious charges of “aiding the enemy” and that he leaked the info to Wikileaks knowing that it would harm the US. He’s also pleading not guilty to violating the CFAA. He has argued, in the past, that he believed what he was doing would help the US by exposing bad actions that were being swept under the rug. The case will now continue on those other charges (and possibly the ones he’s pled guilty to, as the judge can still choose whether or not to accept the pleas). This is not a plea bargain situation — he’s just taking some of the charges out of the trial phase by flat out admitting to them.

However, the much more interesting revelation is that prior to releasing the information to Wikileaks, Manning claims that he approached both the NY Times and the Washington Post to see if they were interested in the infamous Collateral Murder video. Both ignored him. According to Manning’s claims, he felt that the data and information he had collected showed that the US strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan was problematic and doing more harm than good:

He thought about what to do and was convinced that the United States was “risking so much for people who felt so unwilling to cooperate with us” and it was “leading to hatred and frustration on both sides.” Manning was upset with counterinsurgency operations that consisted of the “capture and killing of human targets.”

So he felt that revealing the information he had collected might “spark a domestic debate on the role of the military and our foreign policy in general.” In order to do that, he reached out to a few publications:

He called the Washington Post. A woman answered who seemed to not take him seriously, even though he suggested the information would be valuable to the American public. Then, he decided to contact the New York Times. Nobody answered the phone so he left a message explaining he had information that was “very important.” He left the Times his email and a Skype address but never received a reply.

That’s a pretty big revelation, and once again, shows how Wikileaks was providing a service where the mainstream press completely fell down on the job. People — including the judge in the case — have wondered that if the NY Times had published this kind of information, rather than Wikileaks, would there still be the same hysteria and prosecution over the leak. The prosecutors have insisted they would have gone after Manning just as much in that case, but their own actions following other NY Times-published leaks suggests otherwise.

For what it’s worth, the NY Times denies that Manning contacted them:

“This is the first we’re hearing of it. We have no record of Manning contacting The Times in advance of WikiLeaks.”

Separately, it’s worth pointing out that Manning also noted that the information he leaked was hardly secret, and was available to tons and tons of people.

“I view the SIGACTS as historical data,” Manning stated. It is a “first look impression of a past event.” They show IED attacks, small arms fire engagement or engagement with hostile forces.

The reports are “not very sensitive.” The “events encapsulated involve enemy casualties,” that are “publicly reported” by the Public Affairs Office of the military or reported by “embedded media pools.” They are like a daily journal or log that captures “what happened on an immediate day or time and they are constantly updated.”

Either way, it seems likely that the government will continue to go after him on those bigger charges, so this case is far, far, far from over.

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Comments on “Bradley Manning Pleads Guilty To Some Charges: Reveals That Major Newspapers Ignored His Offer To Leak Collateral Murder Video”

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Anonymous Coward says:

More evidence our ‘mainstream media’ has lost their spine to report the truth.

4 decades ago: Report the Pentagon Papers? Sure, we’ll do that and fight the government all the way to the Supreme Court over it!

Now: Us contacted about incriminating information about unpopular wars? No, we never got contacted, honest! We’re good people who wouldn’t put our nation’s security at risk by criticizing US policy by publishing leaked documents classified as secret!

The Real Michael says:

Re: Re:

“However, the much more interesting revelation is that prior to releasing the information to Wikileaks, Manning claims that he approached both the NY Times and the Washington Post to see if they were interested in the infamous Collateral Murder video. Both ignored him.”

Both are also glorified mouthpieces for the government and don’t want to make waves.

Anonymous Coward says:

Murder is in the air

Tis the season… Tis always the season for murder. To kill someone demonstrates the ultimate power over them. To take life from their body with your actions. What a waste that we can’t see the looks on our victims faces before they take their last breath. Or make them beg for their lives. Oh, the power we could feel by letting their warm blood run over our hands and the strength we could gain from eating their hearts and brains. Wasteful savages we are in the civilized world.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

No, the ability to ignore the problematic nature of three years’ imprisonment without trial is the problem with your assertion. Three years of Geneva Convention-standard torturous techniques used. Three year’s worth of ignoring Amnesty International, who usually deal with places like Iran, Syria and Colombia, places where similar problematic dealings with people occur.

But hey, let’s just focus on one aspect of government in order to strawman!

out_of_the_blue says:

I've been out working. But where are the usual fanboys?

Bradley Manning has taken a bullet for all of us in defending the TRUTH from those who would hide it. What he published was the TRUTH: the military’s own secrets; they don’t lie to themselves, only to us. But it’s thankless and lonely to defend TRUTH.

The silence from “free speech, damn the gov’t” fanboys here is… I HOPE only sadness — it’d be better if too angry for words, though.

Never underestimate the wickedness of those in gov’t, especially lawyers. They’ll ruin your life for fun, and brag about it. — That should have been said in the Aaron Swartz debacle. But until you’re in the very maw of the beast, you just won’t believe that any conscious creature that looks human could be so cruel, unreasoning, and indifferent to TRUTH. And those are highly educated people who can’t claim “heat of battle, middle of a war zone”; they’re devils with leisure in which to consider how best to destroy you.

out_of_the_blue says:

Re: I've been out working. But where are the usual fanboys?

Impostor! LIAR! You have impostored me with your LIES!

The fanboys are all against me. Mike is a dictator for life, worsse than Kim Jong Il. We are one, cube square SQUARE.
Hey, Have a cigar with Mike “The Masnick” Masnick, spy from Google and CHAOS.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 I've been out working. But where are the usual fanboys?

If you would please be kind and provide a link to that specific article and law…I mean an actual link and not just the main front page, I would be very grateful 🙂

Manning was wrongfully imprisoned with no trial for 3 years if I recall correctly.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 I've been out working. But where are the usual fanboys?

An Alford Plea is not permissible as evidence against the accused, it’s an acknowledgement and assertion of one’s own innosence after a trial. The aknowledgement that prosecution had enough evidence against you to get you to plea guilty, and the assertion by you of your own innocence in the matter.

You may be right that an Alford Plea may not be permissible under Manning’s case, but Manning is taking lesser charges for pleading guilty….Which is a part of the Alford Plea process.

I admire the fact that you love to try to call me out, but you have got to work on your tact a bit 😉

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 I've been out working. But where are the usual fanboys?

Oh, no. I agree that what he did was wrong. Perhaps not to the extent the government wants to punish him, but that’s not my point. My point, or rather question, is what about the information he did leak? The stuff that, ya know, makes the US look like a nation of crazed, power-hungry, ogrish lunatics? We’re punishing the man who brought to light the government’s wrongdoings? No, we aren’t. The government is. It’s a totally reactionary move to gloss over the fact that no one in those files is being punished as they should be.

Wally (profile) says:

“According to Manning’s claims, he felt that the data and information he had collected showed that the US strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan was problematic and doing more harm than good”

That itself is an amazingly sad statement about Manning. It reveals he had political bias. We could do no more harm than the harm that Saddam Husein had done to his own people. The US came up with an elaborate scheme involving WMD’s so that the people who defected from Iraq, and their respective families, could continue living and breathing as you or I.

Tony Blair’s statement “If only you knew what I knew”…that pertained to the atrocities that Saddam Hussein was committing as a ruler. We are talking Adolf Hitler cross bred with Joseph Stalin.

In Afghanistan, after the US came and the influence of the Taliban fell, women were allowed to show their faces in public again if the wished and a theocracy rule was ended.

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

More “propaganda”:

Iraq under Mr. Hussein had a stifled quality. Imprisonment, torture, mutilation and execution were frequent occurrences, at least for those who chose to dabble in anything vaguely political. Simple information like the weather report was classified. There was no freedom of expression ? even foreign newspapers were banned ? and no freedom to travel. Contact with foreigners was proscribed.

While assassinating Shiite Muslim religious leaders who opposed him, Mr. Hussein ordered mosques constructed around Baghdad on a scale not seen since it was the medieval capital of the Muslim caliphate. Perhaps the most striking was the Mother of All Battles mosque completed in 2001, the 10th anniversary of the Persian Gulf war. The minarets resembled Scud missiles, and the mosque held a Koran written with 28 gradually donated liters of Mr. Hussein?s blood.

The fatal controversy over whether Iraq was still developing unconventional weapons stemmed in part from Mr. Hussein?s desire to convince different audiences of different things, a postwar study by the Defense Department concluded. He wanted the West to believe that he had abandoned the program, which he had. Yet he also wanted to instill fear in enemies like Iran and Israel, plus maintain the esteem of Arabs, by claiming that he possessed the weapons.

/s But I am totally sure we went in for no reason at all…

Wally (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Oh no worries ^_^ Honestly the information on all this was declassified in 2006 and only names were redacted.

The specific reason for these “lies” that US told other countries around the world stemmed from the fact that while UN investigators found no evidence of manufacture of unconventional warfare (Saddam Hussein ordered the evidence to be dismantled and destroyed after a certain incident in 1989), but Saddam Husein repeatedly told his subjects he still had them and threatened to use the weapons on them to keep the populous in control, and to keep Israel and Iran at bay.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

And all this based on a web of lies and deceit that has done what for he US image? Look, I’m not saying that stopping Husein wasn’t a good idea, but why did we need anything else? And why does the government now continue to spread these lies? To keep gaining power. For themselves, not the country.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

He pleaded guilty to lesser charges, but not the major ones.

Not to mention whistle-blowing usually requires one to do something that would make you guilty of something. The question is whether charges will simply be dropped or not.

This is why people say things like “whistle-blowers need protection”.

DS says:

So how the hell did someone who had no idea what war was about get as far as he did in the millitary?

He sounds more and more like some little know it all prick who planned for this the entire time so he could feel like the great liberator.

Anyone and everyone behind the Collateral Murder videos has zero clue as to the way the world works. Sorry that life is shitty. Get over it.

kehvan (profile) says:

The world seems filled with ignorant, unthinking people who justify and excuse the actions of a backwards, tribalistic religion that’s been on a 1,000 plus year quest for global domination.

The dissolution of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War 1 curtailed that quest for global domination for a period of time, that is until those same people realized they could hold the world hostage by interfering with the free flow of oil from nation in which they held a plurality.

To wit; Bradley Manning and his sycophantic supporters are, in general, ignorant of both military tactics and world history. But specifically, they’re ignorant of the specifics of the incident that Wikileaks labeled “Collateral Murder” —,_2007_Baghdad_airstrike

Simply put, US soldiers were in a fire fight with an undetermined number of people using RPGs and small arms, and Apache pilots did their job in providing cover for those soldiers, but instead of laying blame at the feet of “insurgents” for conducting their attacks from behind the cover of children and non-combatants, Julian Assange, Bradley Manning, and their sycophants instead lay blame at the feet of the US military for defending itself.

kehvan (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Bradley Manning, in violation of his oath to protect and defend the US Constitution, released to Wikileaks thousands of diplomatic cables, which revealed no wrong doing, but did put in jeopardy numerous people from numerous countries who relied on the confidentiality of those diplomatic channels in order to speak freely about world events… And the “coup de gr?ce” of those leaks, the “Collateral Murder” video, never showed what Manning, et al, pretended it to show, which was the wanton murder of civilians.

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