Obama Says It's Okay To Treat Manning The Way He's Been Treated Because He 'Broke The Law'

from the missing-the-point dept

In the continuing saga of President Obama's tone deafness to the concerns of many (including the UN) around the world regarding the treatment of Bradley Manning -- who's accused of being the source of many of Wikileaks major releases -- the President responded to some protesters in San Francisco by defending the treatment of Manning:
OBAMA: So people can have philosophical views [about Bradley Manning] but I can't conduct diplomacy on an open source [basis]... That's not how the world works.

And if you're in the military... And I have to abide by certain rules of classified information. If I were to release material I weren't allowed to, I'd be breaking the law.

We're a nation of laws! We don't let individuals make their own decisions about how the laws operate. He broke the law.

[Q: Didn't he release evidence of war crimes?]

OBAMA: What he did was he dumped...

[Q: Isn't that just the same thing as what Daniel Ellsberg did?]

OBAMA: No it wasn't the same thing. Ellsberg’s material wasn't classified in the same way.
Now, the folks who posted this are taking the biggest issue with Obama's statement of "he broke the law," pointing out that he hasn't been convicted of breaking any laws. I actually don't find that to be all that problematic. The government has charged him with breaking the law, so clearly it believes he has broken the law. Obama stating the same thing that his own Defense Department has stated doesn't seem that ridiculous.

But, that still doesn't excuse the treatment of Manning in any way, shape or form. I don't know for certain if he broke the law. But even if he did, he deserves to have a trial on the matter, and prior to that trial he shouldn't be held in conditions that much of the world considers to be torture. That's the key issue, and one not dealt with here.

Separately, some of Obama's other remarks are troubling as well. The claim that he "can't" conduct diplomacy if information is open is false. It may be more difficult and he may not like it, but he's not in this job because it's easy. Finally, as the report also notes, while Obama is technically correct that the material Ellsberg released "wasn't classified the same way," he appears to be missing out on how that actually goes in favor of Manning, since the content Manning is charged with leaking was classified at a lower level than what Ellsberg released ("classified" rather than the Pentagon Papers' "top secret").

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:00pm

    Watch Obama get re-elected. It's not like he has any real competition anyways.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Mudlock, 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:01pm

    "the content Manning is charged with leaking was classified at a lower level than what Ellsberg released"

    But Manning (allegedly) released a lot more. And obviously the government believes that a large, aggregated amount of low-level data can be as big a deal as a smaller amount of higher-level data, right?

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100806/12442410531.shtml

    Right?

    ;)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Miko, 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:13pm

      Re:

      And obviously the government believes that a large, aggregated amount of low-level data can be as big a deal as a smaller amount of higher-level data, right?

      As a matter of fact, in some cases yes they do (at least in the area of classification). For example, see Section 1.7(e) of Executive Order 13526.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    j, 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:08pm

    Well, he just lost my vote

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Trerro, 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:21pm

    I'd say he lost my vote, but that would require him to have an actual opponent.

    We *really* need more political parties in this country.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      MrWilson, 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:55pm

      Re:

      Or better yet: no political parties!

      While I'm dreaming, I'd like to see a requirement that people provide a reason why they are voting for someone and if it's not a legitimate reason, their vote is nullified.

      "Oh he's just so handsome!"
      "Sorry, ma'am, you just lost your vote."

      Also, if a candidate goes against the reason why someone voted for them, they lose that vote retroactively. If they lose votes to the point that they have less than their opponent had, it triggers an automatic recall vote.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Jim McCoy, 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:45pm

      Re:

      Nah, just break the country up based upon political ideology. Its getting to the point that anyone who deviates from a certain belief system or political viewpoint is un-American, so lets just take it a step further and see how far each side could actually go if they had it "their way".

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 6:55pm

        Re: Re:

        Nah, just break the country up based upon political ideology.

        They tried that once. It resulted in a civil war.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      harbingerofdoom (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 8:03am

      Re:

      negative sir.
      what we need are more standup people running for office not the crop of pure crap we have been getting.

      if all the candidates are corporate whores and nutjobs what does it matter if they are all spread amongst 4 or 5 different parties.

      we need people of real quality rather than bobbleheads.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      okwhen (profile), 26 Apr 2011 @ 2:22am

      Re:

      Einstein defines insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different outcome. The only option never tried is voting for an independent. What difference does it make if you agree or disagree with their campaign promises, if they are anything like the two parties they will never happen anyway. Regardless of their broken campaign promises, bold face lies, screwing the people over, parasitic actions, etc, the people will continue the madness and continue to take it up the tail pipe. The facts are, anyone willing to reelect Obama supports, torture, crimes against humanity, Guantanamo Bay, maintaining our military in Iraq and Afghanistan, rendition, and that is why so many refer to Obama as a Bush continuum. I can only conclude they are either all insane or idiots.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Justin Olbrantz (Quantam), 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:30pm

    Common

    This is a really common mentality that says that there's no such thing as an unjust or excessive punishment if you broke the law. Lots of people believe this, though they generally immediately stop when they personally get a punishment they consider unfair.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Overcast (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:37pm

    Now, the folks who posted this are taking the biggest issue with Obama's statement of "he broke the law," pointing out that he hasn't been convicted of breaking any laws.

    Yep - the new mentality... guilty until proven innocent.

    Thanks for letting us clearly know where you stand Obama.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:37pm

    "OBAMA: So people can have philosophical views [about Bradley Manning] but I can't conduct diplomacy on an open source [basis]... That's not how the world works. "

    So what ever happened to his transparency promises?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    wallow-T, 22 Apr 2011 @ 4:42pm

    IIRC, in the past it has been regarded as Really Bad for the Chief Executive to pronounce the guilt of a suspect before trial. Presumption of innocence, tainting the jury pool, and all that.

    But, since the Constitution has been dead for about ten years now... We have now clearly moved into an era of arbitrary, indefinite detention and abusive treatment a.k.a. torture on the whim of the executive branch.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jesse (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:04pm

    I don't know for certain if he broke the law. But even if he did, he deserves to have a trial on the matter, and prior to that trial he shouldn't be held in conditions that much of the world considers to be torture. That's the key issue, and one not dealt with here.

    I would hope that torture is out of the question for the guilty as well.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Chargone (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:51pm

      Re:

      well, there's certainly a moral question to be asked about it at that point, but it's no longer in the realm of 'absolutely should not be done, ever, under any circumstance, because it breaks the entire system'
      that's my thinking on it anyway.
      (i can imagine a few situations where i wouldn't object much, but they almost all involve enemies in an actual war or something... torture's not that reliable a method of information gathering anyway... and i fail to see any justifiable reason to employ it for any other purpose)

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        anymouse (profile), 25 Apr 2011 @ 11:03am

        Re: Re:

        Torture isn't a method of information gathering, it's a method of information planting.

        If you torture an innocent person long enough, odds are that they will be willing to say whatever you want them to just to make the torture stop. Is this really 'gathering information' or is this 'planting a patsy'?

        Serious terrorists that are willing to die for their cause are not going to 'break' and provide 'reliable intelligence' when being tortured. They may say things that 'sound' like what the interrogators want to hear, but the info will be bogus (probably leading to a trap if it's followed)..... this is all movie plot stuff people, get with the times....

        Manning is being 'tortured' (brainwashed, indoctrinated, culticized, take your pick they are all about the same activity, just performed at different levels by different groups) to try and get him to say what they want him to say when they actually charge him with something.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:09pm

    I can tell the Obama campaign hasn't gone into full swing yet. Usually any post on a site bad mouthing Obama results in a flood of defense comments from paid supporters.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Karl Marks, 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:20pm

    For his own safety

    Manning has serious mental problems and attempted suicide and to harm people on several occasions. Could it be that he needs to be protected from himself?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Justin Olbrantz (Quantam), 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:40pm

      Re: For his own safety

      You're rather badly misinformed. He was put on suicide watch my military officials without ever being seen by a psychiatrist. He was later on officially evaluated as low suicide risk by the official military psychiatrist.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Any Mouse (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:40pm

      Re: For his own safety

      When did he attempt suicide? Thus far, this is only a rumor with no substantiation.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Kaden (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:54pm

      Re: For his own safety

      Citation required

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:00pm

      Re: For his own safety

      Remember, the military has whole teams of people whose job it is to troll the internet posting comments in support of military objectives.

      Just saying...

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:34pm

      Re: For his own safety

      None of this is true, and if it were, it's not clear how substantial isolation bordering on torture for months in a prison would help his condition at all. We may as well break out the hot irons and say we have to purge the heresy out for the good of his soul.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 8:06pm

        Re: Re: For his own safety

        Besides, if he has a valid insanity defense, then (as you point out) he (or someone representing him) should be tried and be given the opportunity to plead his defense.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      alternatives(), 23 Apr 2011 @ 1:26pm

      Re: For his own safety

      Manning has serious mental problems and attempted suicide and to harm people on several occasions.

      The mental problems stikes me as subjective, the suicide claim is just that, a claim.

      But harm people? He was in the military - that is the whole POINT of the military. To harm people.

      The guns are not just for show.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Rasputin, 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:27pm

    The US Government ALWAYS claims the guy has serious mental problems in cases like this, in order to marginalize him. Seriously, does anyone still believe that bullshit?

    Face it, folks. Obama's a net loss. All he's done is capitulate. Which is gonna put the same people who destroyed this country back in power.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    rasputin, 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:38pm

    Apparently, my comment is being "held for moderation". So I'll reenter it without the bull****.

    What I said was that the US Govt. always claims people like Manning have mental problems, in order to marginalize what they are saying. And I wondered if anyone still believes that "BS" anymore.

    I also mentioned that Obama does nothing more than roll over for the conservatives. He's becoming so unpopular that the Republicans are likely to win the next election. These are the same people who destroyed the country before he took office. If those people take power again, start throwing your Deutchmarks in your wheelbarrows.

    And if this comment needs "moderated", well, that's about what I've come to expect from Masnik.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Justin Olbrantz (Quantam), 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:41pm

      Re:

      I wasn't aware this site moderated comments at all. I've never noticed any evidence of that, but I'll check by posting this.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:04pm

        Re: Re:

        I wasn't aware this site moderated comments at all. I've never noticed any evidence of that, but I'll check by posting this.

        They do. One of the factors involved is whether your IP address is on their shit list. Don't get their dander up.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:16pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          It's moderated for things like spam. Every forum moderates spam. Yes, if your IP address is a spam address, it will be filtered out. As far as I can tell, criticisms against MM and his position are perfectly acceptable.

          Also, if you put too many links or something the spam filter will automatically throw it out. But these are typical spam filter functions. The Internet is full of spam. Later, someone reviews it and if it's not spam, it gets put back in.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Chargone (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:55pm

        Re: Re:

        i have no actual data, but i wouldn't be surprised if it depended somewhat on how many times people had hit 'report' on your posts, if you included hyperlinks, how inflamitory the article was, and untold other factors.

        held for modoration doesn't necessaraly mean it won't go up. just means a human will check it on the way past. in theory, anyway. (think i had one of my posts held at one point, if i remember rightly. contained links or something. took a little while but it did get posted)

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 5:58pm

    Re:

    Let's ask Brazil if we can borrow Grumpy the Clown. He'd probably do a better job than the last few presidents we've had. And I know the perfect running mate for him...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 6:27pm

    "I can't conduct diplomacy on an open source basis."

    Actually, you can. There may exist particular exceptions such as for national security reasons (and not invented ones at that), but for the most part there's really no reason to conduct diplomacy in secret. ACTA didn't need to be secret, for example, and neither should evidence of misconduct be secret.

    Public scrutiny is essential to any democracy. Lack of public scrutiny, on the other hand, is the domain of tyrants. Today's United States is steadily becoming more and more tyrannical, with the Obama administration apparently leading the way.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:11pm

      Re:

      ACTA didn't need to be secret, for example, and neither should evidence of misconduct be secret.

      ACTA is good example of why Obama wants secrecy: He doesn't want the people to know what he's really up to behind their backs.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Arthur Lee, 22 Apr 2011 @ 6:31pm

    For his own safety

    They wouldn't treat Manning the way they are treating him if his information were false. It only makes it true. It seems that the truth can be a threat to them.

    They like to bring to light anyone's secrets except their own.
    "Sad." ~Art~

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 6:36pm

    "He broke the law"

    You can judge a society by the way they treat their criminals.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Trying to Understand, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:10pm

    How can you be serious?

    Folks, how can you seriously question Obama's upholding of the law in this case? It is a federal crime to release classified information. Period. If Obama did not allow the law to be upheld, he would be complict in the breaking of it and would himself be liable for criminal charges of obstruction of justice and would likely be impeached.

    Manning should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law, including capital punishment. I cannot see any reasonable to think otherwise. Even the President cannot unilaterally decide the law.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:18pm

      Re: How can you be serious?

      The law does not require Obama to mistreat Manning the way they are. Your assertion that it does smells of military troll.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:22pm

        Re: Re: How can you be serious?

        Agreed, and on top of that he's also pretending that the guy is already guilty. This is what happens when the Commander and Chief says that a guy is guilty without a trial. I'm not saying innocent or guilty, I'm just saying that without a trial it's all a dog and pony show.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:53pm

        Re: Re: How can you be serious?

        Nope, not a military troll. Never served a day. Just someone who honestly does not understand where all you defenders of Bradley Manning are coming from. The law is clear, he understood the law, and he willingly broke it. What is hard to understand here? He has not been tortured (c'mon, sleeping naked is torture? Half the country does that every night).

        You cannot seriously fault Obama for doing what he swore an oath to do (defend the Constitution and the nation) in front of millions of people.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Rikuo (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 10:41pm

          Re: Re: Re: How can you be serious?

          While in a Maximum Security prison (I thought Maximum security was for murderers, rapists and terrorists?), he was allowed to only wear a smock, and in a "prevention of injury" watch, kept in solitary confinement and asked every five minutes whether he was all right. He is interrupted in his sleep, made to present himself nude for parades and harassed by guards.
          For the ONE hour a day he was allowed outside his cell, it was to merely get a little bit of exercise.

          Now please tell me how this isn't "cruel and inhumane punishment" and also why he is being punished at all WITHOUT A TRIAL. You yourself said Obama has to defend the Constitution...well what about the Eighth Amendment (cruel and unusual punishment)? It boggles my mind how you can say Obama is a defender of truth justice and liberty...when you say he has to imprison and allow the torture of a US citizen, a soldier, without a trial.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 23 Apr 2011 @ 1:51pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: How can you be serious?

            Am I the only one not shocked that constitutional defense is not a concern of the president who stated in his book what a roadblock that was in that the constitution as a document only concerned itself to limiting governments influence? Now it appears he not only does not like the limits but also pines for greater influence. You guys are all dismayed because he is turning out to be exactly the kind of President everyone warned you he would be. They cannot promise to give you all kinds of stuff unless they get the power to take that stuff away from others...freedom and the expectation that you will treated as innocent until proven otherwise is just a necessary first step. Just wait to find out what other things they will need in his second term.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2011 @ 6:44pm

          Re: Re: Re: How can you be serious?

          What is hard to understand here? He has not been tortured (c'mon, sleeping naked is torture? Half the country does that every night).

          Right. That's just what people don't understand. Here's another example: waterboarding. People wash their hair all the time, so what's the problem with helping them?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:29pm

      Re: How can you be serious?

      and why isn't the government liable for all of the laws that it broke thanks to all the innocent people that it murdered through its military?

      Why is it OK for the government to kill and murder so many people yet the moment someone exposes the government for its wrongdoings, they deserve capital punishment? Do you seriously listen to yourself?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:35pm

        Re: Re: How can you be serious?

        (and, if anything, all of the information that Manning released should have been voluntarily released by the government. By not releasing that information the government, and Obama by extension, is obstructing justice. They are making it more difficult for the population to learn about the number and percentage of innocent war casualties, they are making it more difficult to figure out who to hold accountable for those casualties, and they are making it more difficult to hold anyone accountable for any of those wrongful civilian deaths. That's obstruction of justice. What Manning and Wikipedia did is not an obstruction of justice, it was a step in the right direction towards establishing justice).

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    • icon
      harbingerofdoom (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 9:00am

      Re: How can you be serious?

      do you really want to go with that statement in light of article II sec. 2 of the constitution?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Rodney Noll, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:15pm

    Your vote is a ruse.

    Your vote does't count. Ellectoral college, bussinessmen, and the news agencies pick the president. The people don't matter. Wake up out there. Than to put a smooth talking college proffesser in, your mistake. People are blind and fools.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      DMNTD, 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:41pm

      Re: Your vote is a ruse.

      Agreed, and I am waiting for this blind malediction of democrat or republican to reach implosion. Just plain tired of it. Open your minds, not your opinions.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    EvilDoctorPorkChop (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 7:53pm

    We're a nation of laws?

    "We're a nation of laws! We don't let individuals make their own decisions about how the laws operate"; Obama said.

    If we are a nation of laws and we don't let individuals make their own decisions about how the laws operate; then why are all of the ILLEGALS still here? They are breaking the law and the Obama administration wants let them stay. I guess when you are part of the Obama brigade you can pick and choose which laws you enforce.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:24pm

      Re: We're a nation of laws?

      "We're a nation of laws! We don't let individuals make their own decisions about how the laws operate"

      So Bradly Manning and Wikipedia release all this information showing how the U.S. habitually breaks international laws (ie: the collateral murder video) by murdering people and Obama's response to this is that "were a nation of laws". So breaking murder laws is OK when governments do it, but breaking the laws that prevent exposing the government for its murder is not OK. We're only a nation of laws when it's convenient to the government.

      I suppose the laws don't apply to governments, only to their enslaved populations.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        EvilDoctorPorkChop (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 9:42pm

        Re: Re: We're a nation of laws?

        I agree with your comment wholeheartedly. My comment was not to eliminate the government from wrongdoing but only to make a point that no person or body of persons is above the laws of this land. This applies to individuals, legal or illegal(including political figures), organizations (such as unions, panthers, etc.)and governments (American or foreign)alike.

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  • icon
    CJ (profile), 22 Apr 2011 @ 8:59pm

    What was the big deal about what he released? Did we get bombed? Did someone get assassinated? Did someone overseas commit a crime over what he released? Or is this more about egos?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    RC, 23 Apr 2011 @ 12:53am

    Classification levels

    I think you're confusing 'classified' with 'confidential.'

    Confidential, Secret and Top Secret are all classification levels, and in that order. Classified itself is not a classification level. My understanding is that the cables allegedly leaked include Secret material as well.

    Anyway, he should be convicted and tried as appropriate, but he should also be treated like a prisoner in pre-trial detention. I agree with PJ Crowley.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 23 Apr 2011 @ 9:12am

      Re: Classification levels

      "Confidential" is a security classification, as are "Secret", "Top Secret", and a host of even higher classifications that are applied in particularly unique situations.

      Legends such as "Internal Use Only" are not a part of the security classification system (thusly outside the scope of the governing Executive Order), though they do serve an important role to the same extent they serve within the private sector.

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      • icon
        btr1701 (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 10:11am

        Re: Re: Classification levels

        > "Confidential" is a security classification, as are "Secret",
        > "Top Secret", and a host of even higher classifications that
        > are applied in particularly unique situations.

        There is no higher classification than Top Secret. There are need-to-know compartmentalized categories within the Top Secret classification for which only specific personal have clearance, but that information isn't legally classified higher than Top Secret.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 23 Apr 2011 @ 2:25pm

          Re: Re: Re: Classification levels

          You are, of course, correct that the pertinent Executive Order deliniates 3 classifications, but does note that Congress may create others by statute.

          My comment was intended to be of a somewhat general nature given that, as is certainly the case with Top Secret, there are a host of permutations it can take. "Compartmentalized" is an example, among many. "Special Programs" is yet another. Of course, having worked within the defense industry I have seen more permutations than I could ever begin to count.

          Frankly, the far more difficult "clasification" to explain is "Proprietary Information", used within the private sector.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2011 @ 6:51pm

      Re: Classification levels

      Anyway, he should be convicted and tried as appropriate...

      In that order?

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  • identicon
    Herbert, 23 Apr 2011 @ 5:05am

    Bradley Manning

    No matter how you cut it, there is no excuse for the inhumane treatment Manning has received. Shame on you, Mr. President.

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  • icon
    The Devil's Coachman (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 6:30am

    Tough noogies, Bradley!

    He was in the military, subject to their rules, and he broke them. I have no pity, sympathy, or tolerance for his idiocy, and having been in the military myself, I fully understood from the beginning how things work there. Once in, you don't actually have any rights, other than what they allow you, and whatever freedoms you had as a civilian are largely gone. He screwed up, and now he will pay the price. Tough! Get over it! Get over yourself! Ultimately, he'll be regarded as just another unstable misfit who chose to demonstrate that fact in the wrong environment. I'm sure he'll be well regarded in the military prison he is sentenced to. Solitary would be his best hope.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Apr 2011 @ 6:59am

    I actually don't find that to be all that problematic. The government has charged him with breaking the law, so clearly it believes he has broken the law.

    Oh so it's okay for Manning but it's not okay for domain seizures? Gotcha Mike. You're hilarious.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      The eejit (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 9:10am

      Re:

      OH look, did you lose your cherrypicking job again?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 23 Apr 2011 @ 3:28pm

        Re: Re:

        Oh look, eejit is trolling again. Do you EVER comment anything useful? Or just flame other's comments? Yeah.. just flame, I know. Just figured I'd ask, you know... give the troll a chance. EVery single time there's random useless comments, they're form eejit. Fanboy #1.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2011 @ 11:41am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Who every said you had to be anonymous to troll? Just because they hang by every work Mike says, true or false, doesn't mean they're not allowed to say ridiculous comments just to try to piss the commenter off...

          Nice try troll, but epic fail.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Ron, 23 Apr 2011 @ 9:29am

      Re:

      Really?? Your a tool.

      Mike, you need a douche button. I would click on this idiot all the time. Put up a douche button!!!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2011 @ 11:42am

        Re: Re:

        Oh look, another member trolling. "Mike, you need a douche/troll button, half your memebers would be part of that group".

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      CrushU, 23 Apr 2011 @ 10:24am

      Re:

      The domain seizures weren't done in conjunction with a federal charge.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2011 @ 11:42am

        Re: Re:

        Yes, they were. Indictment. Read the word's definition, you'll learn something. Wikipedia is a nice start for you.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Mike Masnick (profile), 25 Apr 2011 @ 1:29am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Yes, they were. Indictment. Read the word's definition, you'll learn something. Wikipedia is a nice start for you.


          I find it hilarious when people snarkily make a claim insulting someone's intelligence... and get their facts totally incorrect in doing so.

          There have been no federal charges filed and no indictments in many of the domain seizures.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    btr1701 (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 9:59am

    Classification

    Obama's is also wrong when he says that if he released that information, he'd be breaking the law, too.

    The president is the classification authority. He can classify and declassify whatever information he chooses, so by definition, if Obama released the same information that Manning did, he would *not* be breaking the law.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    btr1701 (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 10:09am

    Classification

    > the content Manning is charged with leaking was classified
    > at a lower level than what Ellsberg released ("classified" rather
    > than the Pentagon Papers' "top secret").

    Mike,

    The term "classified" is a general term that describes all levels of classification. It is not in itself a level of classification.

    There levels of classification are:

    Unclassified
    For Official Use Only
    Confidential
    Secret
    Top Secret

    If information falls into any one of those categories save the first, it's "classified". I trust you can see why saying that Manning's info wasn't the same as Ellsberg's because it was "classified" doesn't really tell us much. All that says is that Manning's info could have fallen anywhere in the range between FOUO and Top Secret.

    FYI: Homeland Security has proposed Congress create a new level of classification, which would fall between FOUO and Confidential, called "Law Enforcement Sensitive". It's in the works but has not yet been approved.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      vivaelamor (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 2:57pm

      Re: Classification

      "All that says is that Manning's info could have fallen anywhere in the range between FOUO and Top Secret."

      From reports I've read the highest level in the leaks was Secret. Top Secret would have been sent over a different system.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    oldtimer (profile), 23 Apr 2011 @ 1:26pm

    Don't forget!!!

    Let's not foget that the law that the Goverment uses is different from our laws. they cercumvent their's to meet there needs. There just covering their Back Sides.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Apr 2011 @ 1:41pm

    Sorry but people who state he lost my vote..probably voted for larger more intrusive government. You will continue to vote that way on the promise of security over opportunity without realizing what you are giving up until it is gone. Voting for people who you think are smart enough to make decisions for you has never resulted in the utopian society people hoped it would, instead it results in the opposite no matter how well intentioned the elected or the voters are. There are a few hundred examples over 4000 years to reference. Vote for whichever party is promising a smaller government focused on limiting their influence to the basic necessities that you cannot provide yourself. Historically, any promise of anything more will end badly especially when they promise to take from someone else to give to you- that is the biggest warning sign of all because that sh!t trickles down eventually as they run out of people to take from.

    Give them too much power and influence and sooner or later the same government capable of giving you the things you want will now be empowered to easily take those things away for whatever reason they want.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Angie Engichy, 23 Apr 2011 @ 4:12pm

    Reaction.

    test.test....

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Angie Engichy, 23 Apr 2011 @ 4:13pm

    Reaction.

    test.test....

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Angie Engichy, 23 Apr 2011 @ 4:17pm

    Reaction to arrogant statement made by President Obama.

    What an arrogant US President Obama we have in history? As quotes “ Obama Says It's Okay to
    Treat Manning The Way He's Been Treated Because He ( Manning) “Broke The Law.” end quotes.

    How would Mr. President Obama's feel if in reverse example the situation for Mr. Manning is happen to be one of Mr. Obama child/kid that done the same things as Mr. Manning does? Would the US President would say it is okay to treat his own children because they are broke the law for example, too?

    How can our American people allowing such single minded statement to continued, example, for US President, Mr. Obama acted so superior and inferior in his statement to Mr. Manning? Wether Mr. Manning is wrong in his behavior, but that doesn't given the arrogant statement made by US President Obama talking down on an ordinary service man.

    Thank you.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Angie Engichy, 23 Apr 2011 @ 4:17pm

    Reaction to arrogant statement made by President Obama.

    What an arrogant US President Obama we have in history? As quotes “ Obama Says It's Okay to
    Treat Manning The Way He's Been Treated Because He ( Manning) “Broke The Law.” end quotes.

    How would Mr. President Obama's feel if in reverse example the situation for Mr. Manning is happen to be one of Mr. Obama child/kid that done the same things as Mr. Manning does? Would the US President would say it is okay to treat his own children because they are broke the law for example, too?

    How can our American people allowing such single minded statement to continued, example, for US President, Mr. Obama acted so superior and inferior in his statement to Mr. Manning? Wether Mr. Manning is wrong in his behavior, but that doesn't given the arrogant statement made by US President Obama talking down on an ordinary service man.

    Thank you.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      The Devil's Coachman (profile), 24 Apr 2011 @ 6:38am

      Please learn to write in the English language!

      What translator should I use to attempt to understand your incoherent drivel? Elbonian? And then you posted it twice, wasting valuable server disk space.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Apr 2011 @ 5:10am

    Ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    STRYKER555, 25 Apr 2011 @ 9:24am

    Manning = Traitor

    You guys crack me up. Manning is a soldier of the US Army, and there are severe rules and regulations that should not be breached. If Manning was a civilian it would be a different thing, but he is a soldier and he breached military law.

    He's lucky he isnt facing the firing squad!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Porkrinds, 25 Apr 2011 @ 9:35am

      Re: Manning = Traitor

      Just one problem.. this thing called Due Process.. and the lack of a Guilty verdict just yet. Until then, he's innocent. Military or not, you are afforded the same basic rights.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 25 Apr 2011 @ 9:31am

    Manning should be shot!

    Manning=Traitor.

    The majority of you make me sick, I guess that is why Obama is President though..................morons!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      anymouse (profile), 25 Apr 2011 @ 11:41am

      Re: Obama should be 'transparent'

      Obama=Hypocrit

      The majority of you make me sick, I guess that is why Obama is President though..................morons!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    noesbueno (profile), 25 Apr 2011 @ 12:30pm

    "torture"?

    to all the posters calling his treatment "torture", have any of you ever been inside a military prison? it's not like a civilian prison at all. it is a very unpleasant place, populated by, and policed by, for the most part very unpleasant people. not saying it is okay by any stretch, just that he really isn't being singled out like it is being trumpeted.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Jordan (profile), 25 Apr 2011 @ 2:44pm

    Now, the folks who posted this are taking the biggest issue with Obama's statement of "he broke the law," pointing out that he hasn't been convicted of breaking any laws. I actually don't find that to be all that problematic.

    Since as President he is the CNC of the military I believe that's called unlawful command influence.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 29 Apr 2011 @ 2:00pm

    You can try Manning for espionage. But that doesn't have anything to do with torturing him first.
    Torturing him first is what lost the Democrats all the money I used to donate.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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