Bradley Manning Accused Of Aiding [Classified Enemy]

from the even-our-enemies-are-secret? dept

Okay, so in Orwell’s 1984, the powers that be may have switched who the “enemy” was arbitrarily and then rewritten history to argue we were always at war with Eurasia or Eastasia. But, at least there was a defined enemy. In the court martial case against Bradley Manning, for supposedly “aiding the enemy” by releasing State Department cables and other documents to Wikileaks, he’s being charged with aiding a “classified enemy” along with aiding Al-Qaida. We’ve already explained why the aiding the enemy charge is highly dubious, since that charge is normally reserved for directly handing information to an enemy, not leaking it to the press. But the fact that one of “the enemies” is secret is completely messed up, and has legal scholars scratching their heads as well.

Three professors of military law – Yale Law School’s Eugene Fidell, Duke University School of Law’s Scott Silliman and Texas Tech University School of Law’s Richard Rosen – told Courthouse News they had never heard of a case involving a “classified enemy.”

When Courthouse News asked the military to explain how there could be a “classified enemy,” they were told the enemy is not actually classified, but it’s classified that this “known” but unnamed enemy had “classified info” that Manning is accused of leaking. Have fun deciphering this one:

“What ‘is’ classified is that our government has confirmed that this enemy is in receipt of certain compromised classified information, and that the means and methods of collection that the government has employed to make that determination are classified,” the spokeswoman said in an email.

But, that makes no sense. After all, the documents were released publicly. Everyone could have had them. Naming the enemy here wouldn’t compromise how the government “confirmed” that the enemy had the classified info. The whole case, once again, seems to resolve around some highly questionable assertions to try to make this into an “aiding the enemy” case, when it’s clearly nothing of the sort.

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Comments on “Bradley Manning Accused Of Aiding [Classified Enemy]”

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48 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Who is their enemy?

The documents were released to the MEDIA.

Which was purported to serve the public, and could almost make a case for that, until the AG’s recent closed door meeting with the new state-approved media sector.

All media not attending that meeting are now officially ‘Internet Bloggers’ and subject to the same laws and interpretations as the rest of the public (enemy).

Loki says:

Re: Who is their enemy?

Exactly.

Insert “American Public” for “classified enemy” and everything makes a lot more sense. For example:

“What ‘is’ classified is that our government has confirmed that [the American Public] is in receipt of certain compromised classified information, and that the means and methods of collection that the government has employed to make that determination are classified,” the spokeswoman said in an email.

wherein, by “means and methods” they mean the illegal wiretapping they have been engaged in for almost a decade now.

Anonymous Coward says:

this is going to turn out to be as big a crock of shit as the case against Dotcom. there is virtually no charges involved, so the government is clutching at anything it can dream up to use as a charge against someone who was, more than anything, i think, appalled at the way US soldiers were behaving towards civilians. it’s no different to the abuses that happened in the Vietnam war. the truth was let out, the government were aware of what had happened and did more damage to itself trying to deny the abuse than if it had admitted it. what has gone from a nation that had beliefs worth having to what it is now is unbelievable. it wants to do whatever it wants to whoever it wants, over whatever it wants, whenever it wants. where is the righteousness and justice that used to rank so highly?

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

Bradley Manning is a traitor and therefore by definition a foreigner. At the same time he was a military personel so he is of course an enemy combattant. Since USA doesn’t respect rules of war, he will be placed in Guantanamo without trial and get waterboarded untill he admits that what he did was wrong and even thinking about it is criminal!

Anonymous Coward says:

“When Courthouse News asked the military to explain how there could be a “classified enemy,” they were told the enemy is not actually classified, but it’s classified that this “known” but unnamed enemy had “classified info” that Manning is accused of leaking. Have fun deciphering this one:”

Actually it is very easy to decipher. The issue is that is the information is not published on the front page of the New York Times as “The US is at War with xxx” then there a significant portion, bordering on 80% which would include all those who have never spent years working international, that will not believe that the US is at war, what the war is about, or how the war is being fought.

Of course the government could always be honest and publicly declare that the US is officially at war which would result in the age of nuclear in a tremendous butcher bill. Better the government lie and let spooks fight it out.

Of course if you bother to keep up with world events you can fairly well summarize in the abstract who is mad at whom.

Then of course there are those who want a little more meet on these bones, do have the ability to understand what Tom Clancy was really saying in his books, and do that his work was more than a fictional account of his perception of possible future reality. The books, written over 20 years ago, are a remarkable depiction of current reality. They are works of fiction with a very astute strategic view of reality. But, then again they are fiction. And, the string of pearls are fiction too. Are are they?

Anonymous Coward says:

Let me translate this move from government speak to ordinary person speak:

“We don’t actually have a case here that would hold up in court, so we’re going to classify everything and hope the judiciary doesn’t ask any questions. We’re also hoping that a wall of redacted documents will mean that people will stop talking about us and let us sweep this under the rug.”

Anonymous Coward says:

Us...the public

Clearly we’re the classified enemy here – our government doesn’t want us yet to know that they’re waging a war against us, and thus, we’re the enemy that has received the classified information.

The information, fwiw, is simply classified as “embarrassing” and shows that our government is working against its citizens, so that’s why it’s a national security threat.

Anonymous Coward says:

Odd that under this assumption of receiving classified information that this same government isn’t charging China with being a “classified enemy”.

Pretty much every month China is being accused of hacking into government, military, and private contractors, supplying military products and stealing research data, trade secrets, and IP.

Strangely I am not hearing this but rather I’m hearing it in a court of law accusation where they don’t have to defend themselves against someone other sovereign government that could just tell them f*ck off and totally ignore it. In the case of the sovereign government it could have real consequences for the government. Here if ruled outrageous they don’t loose anything but a mud ball thrown at the wall with a pitching machine in hopes it will stick.

Ophelia Millais says:

Re: Assange

Agreed. It’s in their interest to conceal the fact that they’ve declared him an “enemy”, the ramifications of which are profound for Assange, Manning, anyone else who has any connection whatsoever with Wikileaks, and anyone who is in a position to leak any U.S. government/military information to anyone, ever.

Anonymous Coward says:

I can’t imagine why they would do this. What’s the goal here? It can’t be to avoid alerting someone that they’re being spied on, because if that was the case they wouldn’t even mention it. If there was a second party, redacting the name doesn’t make this less of a tipoff.

Are they trying to set a precedent for “classified enemies”, so anytime they need to get rid of someone they don’t like they can just accuse them of aiding a “classified enemy”?

Anonymous Coward says:

It’s because they are CHARGING Manning, not the people who used the information he made available too. (via Wikileaks).

Manning is being charged for “aiding the enemy” not for aiding a specific enemy, or a classified enemy, the charges are directed at manning, not the enemy.

So all that has to be established, is 1) is there an enemy ?? (yes)
2) Did Manning ‘aid’ them? (Yes).

Manning did not release these documents to the media, he in conjunction with Wikileaks set out to publish in public documents, IF these documents are released to the public, that is the crime, if they are released to the public, then any “enemy” group you care to define, is considered the enemy.

It is all the groups that use that (now) publicly available information (made public illegally) who AIDS ANY group who would seek to use that information to ‘aid’ their cause.

it’s not the ‘enemy’ being charged for these crimes, it’s manning, he was and is the person who made this information available (via Wikileaks), he is guilty of that crime (if proven), he (via wikileaks) made that information available and public.

So the prosecution, has little problems in the definition of who the ‘enemy’ is, as it does not matter, the enemy is anyone who is willing to use that information (illegally provide) to ‘aid’ their cause.

they don’t have to prove if they are the enemy, they simply have to prove that Manning made the information available.

This is an easy thing to do, and is something they WILL DO.

Then all they have to prove is that the nature of those documents and their contents could be used by any enemy to aid them. That also appears quite easy to do.

What they don’t have to do, is prove that the information was actually USED for that purpose, they just have to prove it was available, and capable of providing aid to groups that would be considered the enemy.

It would be so nice to see TD “writers” displaying a little knowledge of the laws.

Angry Parent says:

TRUTH the enemy of our Country!

“What we have here is failure to communicate.”
“Truth? You can’t handle the Truth!”

Our governing officials are so old, and play by the old school books. They are so easy to read, their words can be quoted in movies.

They are so bogged down by secrets, and lies, and cover ups that they can’t believe the words coming out of their own mouths.

The “TRUTH” is the enemy. We are fighting a war against the TRUTH!!

Our Government is based on lies they have created and shove down our media boarded minds. How dare he spill the TRUTH beans of what our officials hide from us. Oh, the aliens if people knew there were aliens there would be pandemonium!! Ya right! Oh the TRUTH, if the people knew the truth there would be pandemonium!! No (insert bad words) you would be out of a job of lies! You would face the jail system that you have hardened over the last 100 or so years.

All Governing officials of lies should be ashamed of yourselves. You are Grandparents and parents! How dare you bring your children up like this! How dare you show my children it’s okay to act like this!! How dare you shove your lies into the school system! How dare you act like a child trying to cover up his lies!

BRADLEY! You are someone I hope my children emulate! I want them to live in a place of truth, and truth speakers, and oath keepers. Those officials who brake their oath to cover up Truth should resign.

The earth does not need to be a scary place. We can all live in peace if there arnt people who claim they are in charge, and everything must go their way, or the highway. We don’t need dictators. We need community. We don’t need more money than we can spend. Why are people so greedy? What is the point of having more then you can spend in a life time? What is the point of telling people they can not be armed, when you yourself have 8 body guards. Why would one need body guards if you speak the truth?
We can set the world free one Truth at a time. Tell your kids the truth! Tell the kids at school the truth! Tell your neighbors the Truth! Tell your significant other the truth. Your heart will feel good. The kids will grow up in the truth and their lives will be better for it.

Thank you Bradley and all others who tattle tale on the wrong doings! Make them tell the truth! We can feel the truth even if it is not spoken. Parents can always tell when kids are lying. As well as our neighbors, significant others… We are hard wired for knowing right from wrong. Thank you genetics!

Bullies are not okay in this school of life and they need to be sent to the principles of life! Detention is a punishment for bullies! Getting suspended is a punishment for bullies. This is what we teach out kids! Adults you better live up to your teachings and suspend those bullies. The principles of life have spoken.

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