Earlier this week, the soldier accused of leaking thousands of confidential documents to WikiLeaks, Bradley Manning, was handed an additional 22 charges as part of his ongoing court martial process. The 23-year-old, who has been in solitary confinement for more than seven months, stands accused of computer fraud, theft of public records and willfully communicating classified information to a person not entitled to receive it. He now also finds himself faced with a rare charge known as “aiding the enemy” – a capital offence for which he could face the death penalty.
Lots of stories this past week on blogs and alternative websites about him being stripped naked in his cell and worse (solitary for months, etc).
Apparently, guards are forcing Bradley Manning to strip in his cell—a humiliation tactic guards use in Guantanamo Bay. A spokesman for the Marines referred to this as, “standard operating procedure.”
Could the President who stopped torture and wanted Gitmo closed be so bold as to move it here? Can’t be!
Is it possible that Manning doesn’t exist? The CIA released the docs to Wikileaks to embarrass Hillary, certain governments, etc, and Manning is a cover story. Where are the interviews with family and friends? And how come no one has asked that such a low level soldier could get such easy access to just these particular materials? If that's true, how come this doesn't happen all the time - or maybe it has, and they're just gluing it all on this Manning construct?
Given these circumstances, the decision to strip PFC Manning of his clothing every night for an indefinite period of time is clearly punitive in nature. There is no mental health justification for the decision. There is no basis in logic for this decision. PFC Manning is under 24 hour surveillance, with guards never being more than a few feet away from his cell. PFC Manning is permitted to have his underwear and clothing during the day, with no apparent concern that he will harm himself during this time period. Moreover, if Brig officials were genuinely concerned about PFC Manning using either his underwear or flip-flops to harm himself (despite the recommendation of the Brig’s psychiatrist) they could undoubtedly provide him with clothing that would not, in their view, present a risk of self-harm.
Just tossing that out there. Happy Monday, commuters.