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Manning prosecution lays basis for Terror Charge against WikiLeaks founder Assange
by stele - wsws -- Age Monday, Dec 26 2011, 11:37pm
international / injustice/law / commentary

Notice to all DIGITAL WARRIORS, crewz, cells, groups, activists and individuals engaged in defending Freedom, Liberty, Representative Democracy, Law and Order throughout the WORLD, be well advised, BE AWARE and beware!

Pfc. Bradley Manning
Pfc. Bradley Manning

Julian Assange violated the cardinal rule of hackers – MAINTAINING ANONYMITY – he thereby sacrificed his future effectiveness, safety and well being and COMPROMISED OTHERS in the process, for WHAT? Short term fame, notoriety and transient ‘glory,’ history will view him as an anarcho-libertarian with a martyr complex, among ‘other’ things! Let it be a lesson to all, NEVER break cover!

What are Assange's achievements in REAL terms? There is not a thinking person on this planet who is unaware that the US military is a CIVILIAN KILLING, CRIMINAL organisation fighting ILLEGAL, immoral and dishonourable CORPORATE wars of resource acquisition for the Financial benefit of MINORITY elites; but 'gee man, Assange got his picture on the cover of TIME magazine – wow!'

Never lose sight of the FACT that the digital elite are at the VANGUARD of REAL resistance against the nefarious forces that are seeking total GLOBAL domination. The amorphous but supremely cooperative crewz and solos are the most EFFECTIVE force contending against the MASS MURDERING, evil cabals TODAY -- and shall be for some time to come.

They fight the GOOD digital fight, screaming through ‘secure’ networks AT WILL, compromising 'the man' at every turn, maintaining a CONTINUOUS invisible presence in critical systems until the time to strike arrives and the signal is given -- probably sometime in 2012, during severe solar storm activity. Be advised, forewarned is forearmed if you value your lives move from OBVIOUS target areas. The hacker elite are on the verge, a whisker away, from compromising the most ‘secure’ remote links to Russian and US military hardware in space and I need not explain the consequences of that HISTORICAL, future EVENT.

Consider the ABSURDITY of proceedings against whistleblower, Pfc. Bradley Manning and the latest defence Bill – indefinite detention without charge or trial on suspicion (it doesn't get worse than that) -- passed by both houses in the US. I hope unaware ‘dreamboats’ choke on the HARD REALITY that follows.

First, consider the FACT we have the LARGEST CIVILIAN KILLING therefore TERRORIST organisation on the earth – the US military -- relentlessly pursuing an Aussie ‘mama’s boy’ with an martyr complex and prosecuting a brave soldier of CONSCIENCE for aiding or assisting ‘terrorists’ -- if that were really the case the Pentagon would give Manning a medal!

However, as ‘we’ are all aware, America must make an example of (tortured) Manning and victimised Assange and demonstrate to the world that any person, group, nation or State that dares OPPOSE, declare or demonstrate that the US ruling elite is the most vile and heinous CRIMINAL ORGANISATION on the planet, must suffer the consequences -- the unforgiving wrath of the PSYCHOPATHS that rule the USA.

So it’s goodbye HERO Bradley and flawed ‘glamour boy’ Assange and, as of the passing of the ‘defence’ Bill, anyone ANYWHERE the US chooses to target and/or accuse. The only prohibiting or mitigating factor would be the (global) MAJORITY deciding that Truth, Justice, representative Democracy, Law and Order should take precedence over FLAGRANT organised crime! [But don’t hold your breath waiting, dreamboats!]

Assange actually revealed nothing new, however, he did furnish ADDITIONAL proof/information of US criminality – you don’t have to prove the sky is blue to the sighted! However, Assange continues to make desperate/fanciful claims that his site was somehow responsible for all the (OTPOR) engineered ‘spontaneous’ uprisings in North Africa – in your understandably desperate dreams, Julian!

The USA has been exposed as the world’s leading civilian killing terrorist nation on so many occasions I have lost count, research and VERIFY the facts for yourselves. The proven, criminal US military has NO MORAL or LEGAL grounds or right to prosecute ANYONE, it only has what all criminals have, force of arms and other violent TERRORIST tactics (new Bill). That Bill and a decade of permanent war is why an army of invisible, underground hacktivists and other thinking men and women of CONSCIENCE pursue criminal elites relentlessly.

Greetings and salutations to all the crewz and men/women of ACTION everywhere -- we are ONE!

Article from WSWS follows:

by Naomi Spencer

In pre-trial proceedings against Army Private Bradley Manning at Fort Meade, Maryland this week, the Army’s lead prosecutor presented evidence purportedly linking Manning directly to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and alleged that by publishing documents leaked by Manning, WikiLeaks and Assange had aided terrorists, including Al Qaeda.

The proceedings concluded Thursday after less than a week of hearings. Manning is charged with leaking hundreds of thousands of classified documents, including evidence of US war crimes, to WikiLeaks.

The closing arguments of Captain Ashden Fein make clear that the United States government is seeking to use its prosecution of Manning, a 24-year-old soldier and former intelligence analyst, to lay the basis for extraditing Assange to the US and either prosecuting him as a terrorist or locking him away indefinitely in a military prison without any recourse to the courts or due process.

The attempt of the prosecution in the Manning case to make an amalgam between Manning, Assange and Al Qaeda is particularly ominous given the passage last week of the National Defense Authorization Act, which includes authorization for the US president to order the indefinite military detention without trial of anyone, citizen or non-citizen, whom the president names as a terrorist.

Assange is currently in Britain, appealing to Britain’s Supreme Court an extradition order to Sweden on the basis of trumped-up sex charges. If extradited to Sweden, Assange will likely face extradition to the US.

By alleging as well that Manning aided Al Qaeda, the prosecution is escalating a strategy aimed at coercing Manning to implicate Assange. Without having even been formally charged, Manning was held in solitary confinement for months on end and subjected to forced nakedness and sleep deprivation among other forms of torture.

The central purpose of his treatment from the time he was detained 19 months ago has been to “strong-arm” the young man into a plea bargain in which he is called to testify against Assange.

The presiding officer in the Article 32 hearing, Lieutenant Colonel Paul Almanza, will issue a recommendation by January 16 as to whether Manning will face court martial.

He faces 22 charges under the Espionage Act, including “aiding the enemy,” which carries a maximum sentence of death. Prosecutors have stated that the military will instead pursue a sentence of life in prison, although under court martial Manning may still be subject to capital punishment.

The military prosecutor, Captain Fein, told the court that Manning had been “trained and trusted to use multiple intelligence systems.” Fein continued: “He used that training to defy that trust. He abused our trust. Ultimately, he aided the enemies of the United States by indirectly giving them intelligence through WikiLeaks.”

Fein exhibited excerpts of an alleged Internet chat between Manning and Assange. In the alleged exchange, Assange assists Manning in obtaining a password to access classified material.

Baher Azmy, an attorney for Assange with the Center for Constitutional Rights, said the government’s evidence is not verifiable. “We have no access to and cannot review or see the government’s evidence,” he told the Washington Post. “We do not know if it is reliable.”

The prosecution also played a video purportedly showing a member of Al Qaeda urging militants to study WikiLeaks material. “The solution for Jihadis is to head to the free Internet,” the narrator declares.

“Manning was a trained analyst,” Fein said. “He knew Al Qaeda was an enemy of the United States. He knew they collected information from the Internet. He knowingly gave information through WikiLeaks to them.”

“Manning gave the enemy of the United States unfettered access to classified documents,” Fein concluded.

Through such an argument, the military and the Obama administration are seeking to define WikiLeaks as an organization that aids terrorism. The Army is seeking to establish a precedent with the Manning case that will effectively militarize the Internet and media because “terrorists” may learn about US government secrets. Under such conditions, whistleblowers who divulge covert activities of the US government, as well as journalists who report them, could be accused of aiding terrorists, detained by the military or tried for espionage.

In response to this aggressive and anti-democratic argument, Manning’s lawyers did not counterpose a political defense based on an opposition to war crimes, censorship, or the attack on democratic rights. Instead, in his closing argument, Manning’s civilian attorney David Coombs focused on having charges against the private reduced to three counts carrying a total of 30 years in military prison.

Much of Coombs’ closing statement concentrated on pointing out lax security at the Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility in Baghdad, where Manning worked. He asserted that the military itself was responsible for instances where Manning and fellow soldiers committed chargeable offenses, including using unauthorized software and bypassing security. “It was a lawless unit when it came to information assurance,” Coombs said. “They did not follow rules, they did not follow standards.”

Coombs also argued that because Manning was forced to hide his sexual orientation under military discipline, he suffered from a gender identity disorder that expressed itself in emotional outbursts against his colleagues and the creation of an online female alter-ego.

The Army knew of his psychological distress but did nothing, the defense asserted, even after Manning himself wrote a letter to a sergeant in his unit about his troubles. “Everyone is concerned about me,” Manning had written. “Everyone is afraid of me and I’m sorry… I joined the military hoping the problem would go away and it did for a while.” Manning’s anguish was by all accounts ignored, even after a superior officer suggested the private required regular psychiatric consultation.

Describing Manning as “young and idealistic” with a “strong moral compass,” Coombs said, “History will ultimately judge my client.”

“The government overcharged in this case in order to strong-arm a plea from my client,” he added.

After the close of proceedings Thursday afternoon, the Guardian interviewed Daniel Ellsberg, who was among a group of supporters outside the gates of Fort Meade. In 1973, Ellsberg was cleared of espionage charges for being the whistleblower behind the leak of the Pentagon Papers, exposing US crimes in Vietnam.

“This process should not have had to take place,” Ellsberg said. “And the proceedings in this case should be ended in the same way that my trial was ended nearly 40 years ago” when the judge concluded that the government’s misconduct in the case went so far as to “offend a sense of justice.”

Ellsberg noted that President Obama had exerted “improper command influence” when he told reporters earlier this year that Manning “broke the law.”

Ellsberg warned, “What the defense lawyer today suggested is to get a plea bargain that would incriminate Assange.”

Also present at Fort Meade was Jennifer Robinson, a legal advisor who has assisted Julian Assange and WikiLeaks. Robinson told the Guardian December 21 that the proceedings were more restricted on reporting than those involving Guantanamo Bay detainees.

Robinson spoke against the Justice Department’s vendetta against Assange. “This has confirmed what we knew already, that the US is still very serious about pursuing Julian Asssange and it only confirms our fears about extradition to the US are warranted.”

© 2011 World Socialist Web Site

From the Age (Oz)

Assange was 'coach'

The army intelligence analyst allegedly responsible for one of the largest public dumps of classified information in US history chatted online with the founder of WikiLeaks while he was uploading files to the WikiLeaks website, military prosecutors said.

During closing arguments in the pre-trial hearing of US Army Private Bradley Manning, prosecutors flashed excerpts of chat logs to the courtroom, allegedly showing WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange coaching Manning on how to decode computer passwords to access secret army computers. The logs were allegedly found on Manning’s laptop in Iraq.

The judge will rule on whether to recommend a full court martial by January 16.

© 2011 Fairfax Media

Julian Assange breaks cover and foolishly offers himself as a clear target
Julian Assange breaks cover and foolishly offers himself as a clear target

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Military recommends court-martial for Bradley Manning
by staff report via reed - RT Sunday, Jan 15 2012, 11:04am

The US military officer that presided over the recent Article 32 hearing of PFC Bradley Manning has recommended that the alleged WikiLeaks contributor face a court martial for the crimes.

Manning, now 24, was charged with 22 counts stemming from his alleged involvement in Julian Assange’s WikiLeaks site. A pre-trial hearing concluded last month after a week of testimonies that relied almost entirely on government-approved witnesses handpicked by prosecutors on behalf of the US military. Lt. Col. Paul Almanza, who oversaw the hearing, says that the case is fit for a full fledged court-martial.

In an official statement released by the US Army on Thursday, they say that Lt. Col. Almanza feels that "reasonable grounds exist to believe that the accused committed the offences alleged.”

"He [Lt Col Almanza] recommended that the charges be referred to a general court martial," the Army statement reads.

First, the recommendation will go to senior military officers, called a convening authority, to okay Almanza's suggestion. If given the go-ahead, Manning will be scheduled for a military tribunal over 22 counts related to his suspected participation in Wikileaks.

If found guilty of the crimes, Manning stands to spend the rest of his life in prison.

Since being detained by the US military nearly two years ago, PFC Manning has been held in conditions that the United Nations have expressed as potentially torturous and has caused human rights groups across the world to cry foul over the American military’s so-called justice system. Stories of the cruel and humiliating detention of Manning prompted not just request from the UN’s special rapporteur on torture to have access to the prisoner, but also led to 50 members of European parliament to ask for the same.

“PFC Manning has a right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment. People accused of crimes must not be subjected to any form of punishment before being brought to trial,” the signed letter from the PMs reads. Since being locked up, Manning’s lawyer has said that his client has been repeatedly stripped naked and forced into solitary confinement.

After being detailed overseas, Manning was held for months at a Marine jail in Quantico, Virginia before being transferred to a similar prison in Kansas. Daniel Ellsberg, the former Defense Department employee that famously leaked the Pentagon Papers, told RT that the lengthy prison term without trial was being waged to get Manning to crack.

“What is torture for?” asked Ellsberg to RT’s Alyona Minkovski last month. “It’s really a way of getting false confessions. That’s what it does. That’s what it’s for. And in this case, I think they want not only an association with Assange as with some journalist or whoever, they want this very special, an ‘unjournalistic’ kind of thing. They want to show some kind of conspiracy . . .and they want to break him down.”

During the Article 32 hearing last month, evidence was admitted into court that specifically linked Manning to involvement with WikiLeaks. Included in the evidence were chat logs that supposedly show a relationship between Manning and Assange as well as correspondence between the soldier and other online contacts. According to one chat log, Manning told an Internet pal, "I was the source of the 12 July 07 video from the Apache Weapons Team which killed the two journalists and injured two kids.”

Regardless of his involvement with WikiLeaks and the release of classified documents, many have come to the support of Manning and have branded him as a patriot fighting to put America’s perverted secrets before the eyes of the American public. Ellsberg has called the soldier a "hero," and in one digital file recovered by the prosecution and believed to have been typed by Manning, the private allegedly says of one Wikileaks-released file, "This is possibly one of the more significant documents of our time, removing the fog of war and revealing the true nature of 21st century asymmetric warfare.”

David Coombs, the attorney for Manning, presented a case at the pre-trial hearing that the soldier’s superiors were aware that Manning was emotionally unstable and that they discussed suspending him from access to classified material in the past, only to fail in acting on it.

In the Article 32 hearing, Coombs was only allowed two of the near 50 defense witnesses he asked the military to allow. Following a full week of witnesses brought to the court by the prosecution, Coombs’ witnesses testified for only a single morning before the hearing ended.

© 2012 TV-Novosti


 
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