Bradley Manning Sentenced To 35 Years
from the this-is-how-we-handle-inconvenient-truth dept
The prosecution wanted 60 years and the defense asked repeatedly for lenience. “Don’t take away his youth.” The final verdict will likely appease the prosecution but puts Manning in prison for longer than he’s been alive.
35 years, with credit for time served — 1,294 days, 3.5 years awaiting this trial, under circumstances the UN has deplored as “cruel and inhumane.” In addition, he was dishonorably discharged and stripped of pay and allowances.
This is how the government has chosen to handle someone who exposed wrongdoing — with a sentence that might see Manning hit the age of 57 before he’s allowed to walk free. He exposed war crimes and the pettiness and deceit behind international diplomacy. He exposed the ongoing torture at Gitmo done in the name of fighting terrorism. His leaks propelled Wikileaks into the public eye.
Despite the fact his opponents testified no lives were lost because of the leaks and that most, if not all, potential damage was mitigated by Wikileaks’ handling of the documents, the government still wanted him locked away. 35 years for embarrassing the republic. 35 years for not minding his own business. 35 years for attempting to show Americans what its government was actually doing under the pretenses of fighting terrorism and diplomacy. Meanwhile, those who actually performed illegal actions walk free.
This administration, much like the one before it, will not tolerate whistleblowing, failing to realize that its efforts to protect its reputation are doing far more harm than the whistleblowing itself.