Think of that, count it off . . . 1,000 days; that is how long Bradley Manning has been incarcerated without a trial.
Even though he has been incarcerated for nearly three years most Americans have no idea what he did, why he did it or how he has been mistreated coming from the commander-in-chief to the courtroom at Fort Meade.
The mass media has made sure to keep Americans ignorant about what is going on and why it is important. But many do see through the misinformation and are standing with Brad. We take action because like Brad, we want the truth to be told, the truth to be known and understood so we can improve the country.
What are some of the truths? There are so many. In this short newsletter, we want to focus on one – Hillary Clinton. She is the most popular woman in the world, according to polls. If she wants the presidency, the media tells us, it is hers. Yet, what do the Wikileaks documents which whistleblower Bradley Manning released show us? They show us she is not fit to be president and rather than being admired, she should be prosecuted. That will sound extreme to the ears of Americans who have had the truth hidden from them, but it is a factual statement.
The United States houses the United Nations. This gives the US great opportunity to spy on UN diplomats when they come to New York for meetings. It is against the law to spy on diplomats when they come to such meetings. But, the Wikileaks documents show that in 2009 Hillary Clinton ordered that foreign diplomats be spied on. She even ordered US diplomats to obtain DNA data, biometric data, iris scans and fingerprints as well as credit card and frequent flier numbers and so much more. Her orders, sent to 30 embassies, were fulfilling the request of the CIA for all sorts of information. The General Secretary, Ban Kai Moon (who was also spied on) called Clinton in for a meeting about this violation of law. Did this get any media attention in the US? Were there calls for an investigation or a special prosecutor? No. Inside the US Empire there was silence from the mass media and political elite.
Clinton announced last week that she will be doing public speaking after she rests from her arduous job as Secretary of State. No doubt she will reap the pay-off for her years of hard work for the transnational corporations for whom US foreign policy is designed. The Wikileaks documents again show the truth of that fact. Of course, the American people are told we go to war for democracy, protection of human rights and the rights of woman in Afghanistan. Sadly, the mass media says these things over and over so Americans learn to believe them, even though the Wikileaks documents show US foreign policy is of, by and for big corporations.
During that 600 days Manning was driven to near suicide. First he was kept in abusive conditions in Kuwait: kept awake at night and only sleeping during the day, his cell searched regularly, torn apart by guards and he was kept away from other prisoners. Manning thought he was going to die in an 8 by 8 animal cage in Kuwait.
He rejoiced when he was being put on a plane, not knowing where he was going, but knowing it was better than where he was. When he landed at BWI airport, he was so happy to be in the United States – to be home. But, he soon learned things would not get better as he was held in solitary confinement for nine more months at the abusive Quantico Marine Base, where every five minutes he was required to respond to the question, "Are you alright?", and throughout the day not allowed to lie down or sit leaning against the wall in his cell. These are only two examples of many abuses he suffered.
No one else will ever suffer at the Quantico brig because it is now being closed, no doubt in part due to the notoriety Manning supporters heaped on the base with repeated protests until Manning was released and finally treated appropriately.
That’s right, activists made a difference. It was after our final protest where dozens were arrested and paramilitary units, helicopters and horses were turned against us that he was put in appropriate pre-trial confinement. Occupy, veterans and other activists have consistentlysupported Manning. We are in solidarity because we all want transparent and peaceful government.
That is why what we do this weekend makes a difference. 1,000 days. It needs to be memorialized, forced into the consciousness of Americans misled by mass media propaganda that prefers to focus on Manning's sexuality rather than the facts contained in the documents he released.
Really, that is the essence of it. Manning took on the heart of American corporatocracy – the Empire. The media cannot even let us know how big the national security state really is, always understating the real annual cost of our $1.3 trillion security state; never acknowledging that the US has more than 1200 bases and outposts around the world. In fact, no one in the media or political class ever even acknowledges that the US is an Empire.
It is almost amusing because it is so absurd. We live in the largest Empire in world history but the media, political class and the plutocrats behind them never acknowledge the US is an Empire.
That is why Manning has been mistreated from the initial release of the “Collateral Murder Video” showing the US military killing journalists and others in Iraq, Manning became a target of the Empire. He has lifted the veil so the truth can be seen. And, no doubt it will. As the US Empire fades, as all empires do, people will examine the Wikileaks documents and be amazed at what they contain – a daily history of the Empire’s military and diplomatic corps. That treasure trove will show a very corrupt, abusive and violent empire. Manning will be on the right side of history and so will those of you who stand with Brad.