Alleged WikiLeaker PFC Bradley Manning has won the 2012 Global Exchange People’s Choice Human Rights Award, and been nominated twice for the Nobel Peace Prize, but the struggle for his freedom is far from over. His pretrial hearings have major implications for the rights of soldiers as well as the public’s right to know important truths about our wars and other overseas engagements.
Shamefully, at the last hearing which took place April 24-26th, the government clarified that it does not believe that PFC Manning’s motives, or even whether or not the U.S. was actually damaged in any way by the releases, are relevant to its case for the “Aiding the Enemy” charge. The government contends that life in prison is warranted for soldiers who would release information that hypothetically could be used by the enemy. The prosecution also considers irrelevant the issue of whether making the information public might benefit citizens of the U.S. or its allies.
Furthermore, at the June 6-8th hearing the government is attempting to ban any discussion of whether harm was or was not caused to the U.S. from future court proceedings, saying it could neither help nor hurt either argument. This would prevent the defense from accessing government-commissioned assessments of the impacts of WikiLeaks’ releases. Neither the content nor the conclusions of these assessments have been made public, despite the public’s obvious interest in this information.
We must go to Fort Meade June 6-8th to support alleged WikiLeaks whistle-blower Bradley Manning, and the rights of conscientious citizens everywhere!
On June 6th, join the vigil for alleged WikiLeaks source Bradley Manning at the Fort Mead main gate, 8am-10am (Maryland 175& Reece Rd, Fort Meade, MD 21113). We will be holding signs and banners outside the gate in the morning, and there will be a dramatic reading of the chat logs in solidarity with other actions worldwide. Supporters are encouraged to attend the court proceedings afterward.
We can help coordinate carpools from Washington D.C. and Baltimore. Please contact us if you need a ride, or can offer one to others!
Supporters are also encouraged to attend Bradley Manning’s court martial motion hearing at Fort Meade on June 7th and 8th. Bradley’s lawyer, David Coombs, has expressed how both he and his client very much appreciate the presence of supporters in the courtroom. This hearing will run from June 6-8th, beginning around 9am daily. To attend, go to the Fort Meade Visitor Control Center (directions here). We suggest arriving an hour before proceedings are set to begin (if you arrive late, you should still be able to get into the courtroom later in the morning).
Want to attend the proceedings but can’t afford to do so? We want to pack the courtroom with dedicated advocates so that we can build a strong team to defend Brad. See if you might qualify for financial support!