I know there is a lot of controversy with Manning compared to Wikileaks et. al. as far as not redacting documents or using a discriminating news source to filter them. Still, I oppose state secrets and the Hillary e-mails are actually very chilling when you start reading through them. I still side with Manning. Too many of the Snowden documents were redacted with critical information (like which hardware encryption chips were compromised by the US government). No one has the actual Pentagon Papers outside of very specific news agencies. Manning gave the entire story to the people .. and I find it more sad that we didn't see more outrage and change from that release.
I also see another message here. Obama is trying to leave a positive view of the Democratic legacy with this lasting memory. It helps people forget about the predator drones, secret kill lists, continuation of torture, NSA spying and the expansion of war, military and the American hegemony throughout the world. I wish people would see this manipulation; this handout to the left to keep them angry at the incoming administration and not at the government that continues to spy on them and kill people without trial in and endless sea of never ending conflict.
Chelsea Manning acted on her conscience, which is the best we can expect anyone to do. The governments punishment was to prevent that happening again.
Manning released a large volume of information to the public en masse with no regard to it's whistleblowing value. Some of that information was dangerous and harmful.
Manning's battering ram is much different than Snowden's scalpel, even though their base motivations had a lot in common. Snowden knew what he was doing and did it with great care and consideration. Manning was suffering from some serious mental health issues and did something foolish with questionable value at best.
No. She leaked the documents to Wikileaks, who decided to publish them uncensored. She had no control over what Wikileaks would do. Other media outlets opted not to release information they considered dangerous.
And, as @mhurron pointed out, there is no record of someone who was harmed by that information being released.
Manning did it wrong, Snowden did it right.
I do think Manning was naive and sloppy for handing the whole thing over to Assange, though in her defense, Assange seemed fairly reasonable and responsible at the time. It's only after this enormous leak that he seems to have gone mad with power.
With this issue there is a remarkable degree of misinformation, as well as fascist ideology supporting the the surveillance state. These neverending, unechecked powers undermine civil rights and allow human rights abuses to go continue. And it's all wrapped in this package of 'a good liberal just supporting the good guys like Obama and Hillary that evil Assange is trying to destroy.' Assange is far from perfect, but I cannot understand how people do not fight back in solidarity with outrage against human and civil rights abuses.
I think there is a very sad aspect of human nature which makes humans bow before power.
Keep in mind all of the recent leaks have been from individuals and organizations that have supported domestic spying under the rationale "if you've got nothing to hide". Yet they hide in shadows and evidently misbehave when the public isn't looking.
That was the government's position against Snowden, Wikileaks, etc. Also called the "Safe if Nothing to Hide" fallacy. What secrets can cause damage in what ways is pretty broad and arbitrary. Interestingly, it applies to the government's schemes much like people's, private lives. We have to keep them in check more but that should be done by citizens leaning on various branches of government. Including groups doing something about problems in GAO reports.
Really easy to say, though, to never piss off any important person in any foreign country or company with one's private decisions or actions. Really hard to do, too.
The result: a whistleblower for one just gives a competitive advantage to the others. So, both the country's policy and the whistleblower shifting people or investments to other scheming countries or companies are each causing damage.
The debt we owe Manning for exposing the fact that the US murdered innocent civilians far outweighs the damage she did by releasing the cables. The prosecution couldn't identify anyone who was harmed, beyond those innocents harmed by the US government machine guns, which wasn't Manning's fault.
A people deserves to know what their government did on their behalf.
Chelsea had a moral imperative to leak the murder of innocent civilians by the US military. But she should have stopped there.
AFAIK, both Manning and Snowden released large quantities of information without reviewing all of it in detail for public interest vs. potential harm, and released it not to the public but to third parties that managed public release. The difference is that Manning released it to Assange and Snowden released it to more responsible journalists.
Snowden released his information to journalists who carefully vetted each item for newsworthiness with the participation of the US government. Then that data was parceled out over many months, so it would remain in daily news cycles and continue to generate commentary over that time, staying in the public's mind.
Manning gave her data to Wikileaks, who posted it online in its entirety.
In fact, in Greenwald's book No Place to Hide, he describes how they held off publishing for several days while waiting for a response from the government. Greenwald was so frustrated with the delays that he considered quitting the Guardian and going on his own. I think that's the idea that eventually turned into The Intercept.
Why did you ignore the SCMP entirely?
As we all know by now, it's illegal to read the leaks unless they're on CNN. "Responsible" journalists from CNN told us as much.
Sort of. They're more responsible in the general sense but also foreign journalists receiving U.S.'s spying capabilities on foreign persons. The aiding and abetting concept is quite appropriate given they published all kinds of NSA attack strategies & subverted companies while the foreign attacks & companies... including in their own countries... didn't get the same treatment. Both attack and defense on the other side got a great boost while U.S. companies simultaneously lost market share.
Quite a bit of damage giving stuff foreigners shouldn't know to foreign journalists. I might be happier if there was a Snowden in all 20+ countries involved in economic and industrial espionage. Instead, it was just what mainly two (U.S. and U.K.) were doing outside the many eyes partnership that extends to Europe. Quite asymmetrical.
The real question is whether there is a greater good to that damage justifying it. I think there was for the domestic leaks but not the foreign ones outside a few. Far as that few, the Belgacom attack is a good example where taking down allies' telecoms over bullshit could have consequences for America past the usual info collection the spies do. Americans should have a conversation about that kind of thing before those acting on our behalf do such acts.
More over, if some of those reprehensible things you did, you happen to have done to your own allies, it means they are entitled to have second thoughts about whether they will want to continue aligning their interest to yours, or if they should be more assertive in the future to compensate for the cost of doing business with you.
So, you can keep shooting at the messanger all you want, but any bad outcomes comming out of this, you brought to yourselves.
They did it different, different tools for different purposes. Comparing them like for like is not a good comparison.
Then she should've released it to someone else. She is ultimately responsible for deciding to give it to Wikileaks.
Neither reason nor morality made our government listen to criticism from within but maybe the pain of suffering these leaks will.
You've clearly never been deployed. You have more free time than you know what to do with.
Think about what you do when you get off shift at your job. Now remember that you have no family or friends that aren't also co-workers to hang out with. No alcohol, limited access to new movies and video games. You are also stuck within the confines of whatever base you're assigned to. If you're lucky there might be a one-screen movie theater or an internet café. You might even be able to get severely bandwidth-capped satellite internet in your tent/third-of-a-trailer-shared-with-a-roommate that you call your room.
Despite what you want to believe about Manning, lack of time was no excuse for indiscriminate leaking of sensitive information that honestly and truly put lives at risk.
Maybe I'm an asshole, but the "put lives at risk" line seems like nationalistic swill. Even if it risked American combatants, why should that justify hiding the deaths of possibly fifteen thousand Iraqi civilians?
Most of the military intelligence Soldiers I deployed with brought their own personal laptops.
You really underestimate how much free alone time is available to you when you are deployed. Remember that Manning was also kind of a black sheep at the time. Spending hours alone on a laptop would not have been seen as out of the ordinary at all.
Even with the route she took, it was only a matter of months for her to make a mistake that got her arrested. Giving it to wikileaks reduced her anxiety, going through it likely would have ramped it up. Additionally, needing to keep a local copy of the data is a huge risk.
I don't think the war diary stuff made much of an impact, or the apache video. The diplomatic traffic OTOH was the spark into the tinder of the middle east autocracies that set off the so-called Arab Spring.
Besides, we saw ~10 people blown away in that one video. That's a fair number of eggs you'd get to break by leaking before even being at parity with that one instance, let alone all the others.
So to paraphrase "they did nothing wrong and even if they did it would have been okay".
First, they clearly shot civilians trying to take other civilians to the hospital by essentially inventing weapons they didn't and couldn't have seen. Secondly, in most countries when you get the responsibility to fly something like an attack helicopter, which takes a fairly long time to learn, you tend to have to be better than some random soldier. The "war is hell" excuse isn't really viable with the attitudes displayed in the video. But if you're trying to say that these are the kind of actions we should expect when the US invades a country then I guess we are in agreement.
Don't fall for a logical fallacy, and try to view the situatiom from the lens of the information that they actually had, not the hindsight.
(from the transcript )
05:30 There's one guy moving down there but he's uh, he's wounded.
06:01 He's getting up.
06:02 Maybe he has a weapon down in his hand?
06:04 No, I haven't seen one yet.
06:33 Come on, buddy.
06:38 All you gotta do is pick up a weapon.
06:54 This is Two-Six roger. I'll pop flares [drop flares]. We also have one individual moving. We're looking for weapons. If we see a weapon, we're gonna engage.
07:18 Bushmaster; Crazyhorse. We have individuals going to the scene, looks like possibly uh picking up bodies and weapons.
07:36 Picking up the wounded?
07:38 Yeah, we're trying to get permission to engage.
07:59 Roger. We have a black SUV-uh Bongo truck [van] picking up the bodies. Request permission to engage.
There's nothing unclear here or anything to be misunderstood. If they had seen weapons they would have engaged already instead of asking for permission. It's just that the crew of the helicopter really wants to shoot them and that they, the US military nor the US public don't really give a shit if they are civilian as long as they can get away with it, which they can.
Had this been reviewed properly, yes. A "Mistakes Happen" stamp could probably be used. But by hiding it and lying about it, they turned it into something we can't ignore.
Also, I don't think the pilots are blameless. If they ever hit civilian court that transcript would hang them.
The first part of your sentence shows why the second part is nonsense. Manning dumped a bunch of classified information on a third party. Manning left the ethical decisions to that third party. That is certainly preventable as many others have prevented it. I've done so many times with confidential information that I make public in a selective way in my writing that protects sources or just details that must be private.
Truth is Manning's mind was messed up due to internal struggles, she also saw messed up stuff in military, and simultaneously was blindly trusting third parties to make the right decisions. The combination led to a damaging, criminal decision to turn all of that over to Wikileaks rather than pure whistleblowing of combing for corruption to selectively leak and/or redact. This is what she was rightly punished for although how the punishment was delivered was cruel and should've been illegal.
Glad Manning is to be released soon but she set it in motion with foolish decisions that had alternatives. It certainly wasn't an inevitable set of cause and effect.
Yes, like her supervisor being absolutely willing to go along with faking information against innocent Iraqis that got them jailed and killed.
> damaging, criminal decision to turn all of that over to Wikileaks rather than pure whistleblowing
Ummm, her commanders refused to listen to pure whistleblowing. Didn't you read about the case?
As someone required to report a crime, you aren't required to put in a show of effort and declare it done, you're required to do your best to stop it.
> Manning left the ethical decisions to that third party.
No, Manning made the ethical decision knowing what Wikileaks promised - to get the information seen. And she made the right one.
Of course Manning (or anyone who leaks) is likely to be an imperfect messenger. It's silly to focus on those details when there is a much bigger issue at stake.
FWIW I wish all of the Snowden data would have been given to Wikileaks. I have great respect for Glenn Greenwald, but the government has utterly failed to respond to the leaks in an appropriate way, which suggests a great lack of respect for the rule of law and the American people.
Instead, they pretended it hadn't happened and that no excesses occurred. I think several top level officials should have been removed and imprisoned and we should have seen footage of all the computers being carted out and put up for sale so that the money stolen to build the apparatus could be reimbursed to taxpayers.
But it's clear to me that actions of both Snowden and Manning were moral but illegal.
Regardless of motivation, they both exposed serious crimes. We are all better off because of the risks they took, and there was very little damage to offset the obvious benefits.
The moral yet illegal is exactly what commutation is for. Kudos to Obama for exposing himself to vicious criticism to do the right thing.
So dangerous and harmful that it harmed no one.
Commuting Manning's sentence is magnaminous. She endured 7 years of torture in solitary confinement, tried to suicide several times, and plead guilty in a court of law.
Snowden GOT AWAY. And he went to Russia, where Putin granted asylum as a giant "screw you" to the US.
So yes-- we do have a moral imperative to pardon Snowden, just as much as Manning. But we won't do it.
This is not true. Aside from the domestic surveillance disclosures which lead to reform in that area, most of the Snowden leaks do not appear to have any sort of whistleblowing value.
Recent example of info release with no whistleblowing value: https://theintercept.com/2016/12/29/top-secret-snowden-docum...
Snowden stole a huge amount of highly classified information and gave a tiny amount to journalists to comb through. Now we only have his word that none of it went to Russian intelligence though all signs point to the contrary.
You don't have to be physically present in Russia to provide the Russians with intelligence.
I don't know why it makes any sense to assume that Snowden is leaking any more than what he gave to the journalists. His entire mission was out of loyalty to the American public, he did not intend to end up in Russia, and he wants to return to the US. America is keeping him out because they will not guarantee him a trial that meets his criteria of fairness/openness.
Don't be dense. Those other agents didn't make off with 1.7 million highly classified files, flee to China and then arrange a defection to Russia with Russian officials.
>I don't know why it makes any sense to assume that Snowden is leaking any more than what he gave to the journalists.
Because he has stolen much much more than he gave to the journalists and the stolen data was much more extensive than domestic surveillance programs.
>America is keeping him out because they will not guarantee him a trial that meets his criteria of fairness/openness.
I'm sorry the law doesn't meet his criteria.
Besides, we have his word, and two (or three) witnesses who saw him destroy the content of the SD card.
Diplomatic relations are handled by China's foreign ministry. There is no way Snowden's status would not be handled by the Chinese government.
Who is trying to muddle the point with irrelevant detail? It won't fly here!!
Also, I'm glad there were witnesses of some SD card being destroyed. Good thing we can trust the word of someone who at that point has already stolen deep operational intelligence in the first place (we're not even talking about information on mass domestic intelligence - just typical intelligence data), that this was the only copy he held or wasn't already compromised. A person who then fled to Russia by way of China. Unbelievable.
Or is it that I just refuse to take his unsubstantiated claims at face value, and that makes me a conspiracy nut?
The guy is the definition of a traitor to his country.
This is a poor defense of Snowden's actions.
If it was given to a journalist who wasn't authorized to have that information, it was "released" in the only sense that is legally relevant, even if the general public doesn't have that information. Imagine saying what you just did, but replacing "journalist" with "KGB agent".
The second half of your post seems to be arguing about the word "release" versus "leak". The former is a superset of the latter, both are accurate. Certainly nobody's saying what he did was legal.
But the rest was basically just normal communications.
I think she's served more than enough jail time, but this didn't really seem like a conscience-driven whistleblowing to me.
Snowden, on the other hand, leaked some seriously shady and unconstitutional activity (along with other things that IMO did not need to be released publicly). That very much did seem like he leaked it due to his conscience.
I took his opinions with a grain of salt given his background, but also couldn't refute due to being relatively unfamiliar with the Snowden saga.
The "in bed with Russia" thing is just a smear. No one has produced any evidence of this, and it's really hard to make it match up with how everything unfolded.
The biggest clue that what your friend says is wrong that Snowden wouldn't have gone public and announced himself if he was spying for Russia.
"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it."
I doubt he's fond of Russia, either, and he's made some passive-aggressive jabs at them on his Twitter.
That said, it can't be ruled out that he divulged even more secret information to Russia's intelligence services as a condition for asylum, but I don't think there's any evidence it was one of his motives when leaking.
Do you really believe Snowden was a double-agent, or that he was a conscientious whistle-blower? That's what it comes down to.
Even if you don't care for the content of the cables, the fact that an estimated 3 million people have access to them with nothing worth mentioning in the form of access control should give you serious pause. The 1% are real, they are just not all billionaires.
Ok... there are probably far, far worse hidden scandals in terms of access control/data security in the US government. I don't see your point. I don't think that's the point anyone was trying to make. It's bad, for sure, but it doesn't warrant leaking all of the documents.
>while others out there risk their life to produce the documents that can bring about actual change.
What in the diplomatic cables brought, or could have brought, actual change?
NSA surveillance leaks could (and, to a small extent, did) bring about actual change. The cables accomplished nothing positive for anyone.
I don't know, it taught me a lot about the US attitude towards the rest of the world. I feel that is worth knowing.
Which may have had wide-reaching consequences, with respect to the Arab Spring.
Are any other architects of these disasters serving 35 years?
If someone working in medical records uncovered insurance fraud, but put thousands of people's full records out on the internet (instead of a targeted disclosure), they would absolutely civil lawsuits and criminal penalties. Even if their original intent was noble, their actions would be subject to punishment.
The ends don't always justify the means.
The thing to keep in mind, though, is that Manning didn't simply dump these to "the public"; she gave them to Assange and his people, who (after some falling out with each other, and a lapse in some basic security practices) managed to leak the passphrase to one of their private keys.
Which isn't to say she's not responsible for the consequences of her actions; in any case, she's already very much paid the price for the decision she made. But still, it was not her intent that the cables be simply "dumped in public".
> the public has benefited greatly
> from the disclosures in the more
> pertinent cable leaks
Here's one of my personal favorites (summarized by Reuters):
"You know the movie 'The Godfather'? We've been living it for the last few months," a businessman involved in the dispute was quoted in the cable as telling an official from the U.S. diplomatic mission in Tripoli.
The cable, which was made available to Reuters by a third party, centers on a bottling plant in Tripoli that was shut down for three months. It had been seized by troops loyal to Mutassim Gaddafi, a son of Muammar, who at the time was feuding with one of his brothers, Mohammed. (Another State Department cable suggests a third Gaddafi son, Saadi -- better known as the family's professional soccer player -- may also have been involved in the squabble, though no details of his role are given.)
Eventually, the American diplomatic mission in Tripoli, known then as the U.S. Liaison Office, sent a firm protest to the Libyan government. The document states that around the same time, Mohammed Gaddafi, possibly under pressure from his sister Aisha, a family peacemaker, apparently agreed that shares owned by the Libyan Olympic Committee, which he led, would be sold to a third party.
Shortly afterward, the cable says, Mutassim's men left the Coke plant, ending the family standoff, but not before employees of the plant received threats of bodily harm and a Gaddafi cousin was stuffed in the trunk of a car.
Really, it shouldn't be hard to satisfy your own curiosity on this topic. Unless you think we're better off not knowing about this stuff, that is.
> Unless you think we're better off
> not knowing about this stuff, that is.
I guess that argument could be applied to high crimes and corruption of all sorts, just about anywhere: "We already know about that in broad strokes. What good does it do to air all that dirty laundry before the general public?"
> high crimes
This is, quite frankly, a bizarre equivalence to make.
Also, there's not necessarily an element of "great personal risk". It may just be social or embarrassment or minor damage to a career. If some flunky at a Peruvian consulate has a bit too much to drink and says his boss is an asshole, it gets written down and goes into a file somewhere. When people see that on the internet they think "Man, I really need to watch what I say to the Americans."
Given the degree of subterfuge the US has facilitated in many of these countries, over the years -- most of these folks already knew that.
And I think you're mostly jumping at shadows here. Diplomacy is a lot less interesting and less nefarious than you seem to believe.
About 95% of it, yes. But if the other 5% were so profoundly uninteresting then people wouldn't be talking about how "embarrassing" and "damaging" it was to have it released.
Again, there's a practical side here. As I asked in another post, just how much would you share with a friend or family member that was going to immediately run to publish what you said in a Facebook post? Because that's essentially what Manning did.
No, that's not what she did. She gave the archive to a third party (Assange) who turned out to be unreliable. But that's not "the same" -- or even "essentially" the same -- as just outright posting it on Facebook.
Can we just end the discussion there, please? I'm not saying this issue is cut-and-dried, or that there's no validity in your arguments. But if we keep going back and forth about the basic event chronology, then there's really not much a of a point.
Yes it is. Once it's there on the internet, people are linking to it, and it's a topic of discussion, anything that gets you into any kind of trouble is out there for people to see.
>Can we just end the discussion there, please? I'm not saying this issue is cut-and-dried, or that there's no validity in your arguments. But if we keep going back and forth about the basic event chronology, then there's really not much a of a point.
If you're really intent on ending a conversation, try not attempting to slip in the last word.
Sounds eminently reasonable. It's all yours, then.
As for outing what people "really think" of Berlusconi... I suspect that no one was surprised (including the clown himself, Silvio).
Acting on her conscience does not make what she did the right thing to do.
For example, the 2 men behind the boston marathon bombing, did what they did based on their conscience. Did that make what they did right?
What if someone indiscriminately leaked everything on the Manhattan project during WW2? Would they be a hero because they "acted on their conscience" and showed the world that the big bad USA was secretly developing WMDs? Or would they be a villain because they just taught other countries how to do the same? To the peace loving left he would be a hero, to the nationalist right he would be an enemy.
Bradley/Chelsea Manning is no different.
No thats not what's being said. I would hope we could all be above strawmen.
English is flexible/ambiguous like that.
Anyone who is able to condemn Manning would also condemn the soldiers of Hitler's army who chose to disobey orders to kill Jews because it would have been against the law.
Just because something is illegal doesn't mean it's wrong. And if our government didn't engage in illegal activity (like torture, political uprisings, wire tapping) then perhaps people like Manning wouldn't have to leak information that could compromise a few undercover agents.
In this case, the benefits far outweigh the costs. Find me a politician or soldier who got jail time for committing acts of torture in Baghdad and then we can talk about penalizing Manning.
See, e.g. the conduct that Colin Powell described in this email:
[EDIT: click to view the PDF to find the actual content.]
It's oversold, yes, but as far as I can tell, it's this Bill Ivey (NEA chairman under Clinton, Obama transition team member) and not some random spammer -
Other correspondence can be found here -
But she was punished. With 7 years that she already spent in jail. I don't think that reducing her sentence from 35 years to 7 years "encourage others to leak".
His motivation was money (selling his secrets for millions of dollars) and when he was caught, he was hoping to have his sentence reduced to 8 years so he may be with his family.
I think it would be encouraging to others to leak if the risk of making millions for their families to getting caught still allows them to live life if the punishment is anything less than life.
This is why I'm very much in the "Pardon Snowden, Commute Manning" camp.
There are/were several other leaders nearby who also suffered.
Along with them, the resulting violent conflict killed plenty more.
A one-time presidential commute or pardon would do no such thing. Saying that "this specific case has been looked at and deemed to be okay" doesn't automatically equate to "everyone can do this and they won't get in trouble." There's a huge difference between whistleblowing and treason
I too am troubled by the decision, but it does seem a bit out of whack with the total lack of punishment for the higher echelons of government. Lately it seems like the rules-based system we have been living under is cracking.
Personally I think esoteric pronouns like "ve" are a silly idea that won't catch on, but I like the idea of using "they" as a gender neutral way to refer to one or more people.
It's a straightforward expansion of the current usage: as a gender neutral way to refer to two or more people.
The NYT correctly stated in the parent article, "Ms. Manning was still known as Bradley Manning when she deployed with her unit to Iraq in late 2009." See how that works? She was always a she, even though she was presenting as a man at the time.
Highly religious, unscientific arguments are best taken to Gab where they will not be subject to scrutiny. Can I help you make an account?
Trans binary people enforce their gender identity quite strongly because they get so much "pushback" (a polite way of saying harassment and threats) from people. In this case "they" is tapping into that.
If you think this is complicated, try calling a baptist a catholic and see what happens.
Not actually. Manning was required by law to refuse and report illegal orders. And not just make a show of reporting it and then back to business as usual.
> didn't it also do things like give away the positions of some undercover agents?
No, but that'd be our fault anyways, for mixing legal and illegal.
> And harm US diplomatic relations with other countries?
The truth didn't harm relations, doing the things that the allies found out about in the first place was the problem.
> Look at it from the POV of the government: How could they not punish Manning?
Um, admitting fault and correcting it. But yeah, we know that'd never happen so what could they do but shoot the messenger?
> It would do a lot to encourage others to indiscriminately leak classified info.
Doubtful. The motivator in Manning's case wasn't the ease or difficulty of leaking, but the crimes that needed exposing.
Weren't they from the DNC leak? The DNC is not affiliated with the US state. I read some of the mails, and I found nothing chilling so I'm curious to know what chilling mails you found.
Secretary of State Clinton, who deletes government emails and communicates state secrets through her own private email server, receives no punishment, while people who blow the whistle on questionable government behavior receive maximum punishment.
That lack of consistency in applying the law is what makes it unfair...for everybody.
How do you know what Obama's motive is? Were you at the meetings? Did you read the memos? Do you have a brain-to-brain interface or have you hacked his Blackberry?
Should he do nothing good or positive, so that you don't suspect him of manipulating people?
I mean, the crime, conviction, sentencing, and multiple suicide attempts all happened while Obama had the power to commute the sentence. If there was a principle at play here, if Obama thought it was a moral good to have this person avoid a prison sentence, I'm having a hard time imagining what the roadblock was. Was it that the massive leak and subsequent prosecution didn't get enough media coverage, so he was unaware of the situation? No, that doesn't sound right, it was widely known at every stage in the process.
If commuting someone sends a message, the delay sends a message too. Perhaps he's just trying to do the right thing when the consequences won't hurt him. Perhaps it's all for show. But I think it's fair to conclusively rule out the theory about this decision being made in order to maximize the welfare of Manning. Something else was in the calculus here.
Not that I'm praising him, he's been terrible wrt surveilance and transparency.
What if he thought it was good to avoid too long of a sentence? One possible interpretation is that he wanted punishment because it was against the law and as a deterrence, but didn't want to be too harsh. Sentencing isn't within his control, but commuting a sentence is.
> If commuting someone sends a message, the delay sends a message too.
Sure, everything sends a message, but not every message is intentional. It's undisputable that these actions send messages, but impossible to know for sure what the reasoning was and what messages were intentional and what were byproducts. The traditional time for a president to commute and pardon is at the end of their presidency, so reading a purposeful message into the delay may or may not be useful.
This is the time for doing these things... things like this that have the potential to upset a lot of people you rely on... but he wont be relying on them anytime soon... thats kinda where the "tradition" of pardons, etc at the last few days of term comes from.. there is next to no backlash for the president if hes only in office for a few more days
What chilled you, specifically?
Put another way, the emails revealed that it's very possibly that Trump will be President because Clinton had corrupted the DNC.
That is really the only significant dirt that came from that leak. The Sanders stuff was overblown.
From what I've read, it appears the DNC directly violated their own bylaws by (strongly) preferring one candidate before the primary. Repeatedly and flagrantly.
If the DNC isn't even accountable to itself, how should American voters feel about them having control over the duopoly of private parties which are allowed to select presidential candidates? At best, their actions were revealed to be grossly unethical. At worst, criminal.
Most of the leaks showing the DNC "favoring" Clinton came after it was clear she was going to win the primary, and most of DNC wanted to focus on the general election. On top of that, individual staffers having a preference for the person they are very close to over the guy who joined the party just to run shouldn't be that surprising, but I haven't seen any evidence that it translated in substantial action to tilt the field in favor of Hillary. I'll concede the debate question issue was a bad look, but again, what advantage was conferred by telling the HRC team that a debate in Flint would feature a question about the Flint Water Crisis?
These sort of private discussion are totally reasonable for an organization like the DNC to have before the primary was 100% over cause they could see the writing on the wall. I didn't read every leak or anything like that but what I did see was mostly of this nature. This of course pissed off Sanders supporters (the point of the leak in the first place) but it really wasn't that bad imo.
The Brazile thing was though and I'm amazed she's not hiding in a cave somewhere in disgrace.
And the reason for that was because she was heavily pushed as the candidate by CNN, MSNBC, etc while the same media ignored Sanders. That it only became clear later that this media had relations with the Clinton campaign and DNC beyond just the personal biases of pundits is cause for concern IMO.
Not terribly, since we can see where a lot of it went and we're not terribly upset with the outcomes?
> The outright collusion with media?
Yeah emails that emails went emails really emails well emails, right emails?
> The lack of sensitivity to LGBT rights?
Clinton has a mixed track record on LGBT rights, but I trust her infinitely more than I do Trump, because her recent track record is much better. If you think she'd get a free pass for screwing over the community, you're dead wrong.
> The fact that they never discussed how to actually solve the Nation's problems, only worked on crafting a message to the public, and having "public and private" policies?
It.. uh... was an election campaign, dude. They're talking about being elected. But also, there ARE a ton of emails in there talking about the policy messaging. Mostly how to frame it to different people, as framing matters.
> The family connections to Russia that everyone conveniently ignores lately?
If Russian connections were a problem Trump would be forced to step down in favor of Pence, now wouldn't he?
> Or most chilling of all, the cryptic codespeak used in several emails?
Did you use your pizzagate decoder ring to figure out where they hid the girls yet?
Might be time to step back and take a deep breath, my friend.
Have you actually read the emails in question? I've referenced them elsewhere in this thread.
Even if I take all of them as 100% verified, I am certainly not "chilled" the way you are. Nor do I think having IT fuckups should be a federal crime. Given how shit both R and D party security is, I suspect the private email servers are actually afforded a bit of security by being obscure.
And the only aspersion I've thrown your way is that this allegation of "codespeak" is rubbish and lead people to dangerous actions on the grounds of "PizzaGate". I don't agree with your picture of reality, but I think you're an adult capable of recognizing this and therefore should be responsible for your viewpoints in a public discussion forum you choose to engage in.
If I didn't feel that way, I wouldn't reply. You wouldn't be responsible for your actions.
Ummm, since we're now talking about the private email server (still absolutely illegal, regardless of justification), we're not talking about DNC leaks here, so this has nothing to do with "D" and "R".
That ClintonEmail.com server should have been in the STATE DEPARTMENT behind government firewalls, heavily monitored by our government's cybersecurity division.
> I suspect the private email servers are actually afforded a bit of security by being obscure.
WOW!!! Are you listening to yourself?! That's demonstrably been proven to be completely false (ClintonEmail.com is not exactly a "obscure" domain, BTW) -- and by her team's own admission, as there was hack attempt after hack attempt:
Then, of course, there was this quote:
> Finally, we learned there is a confidence from these sources that her server had been hacked. And that it was a 99% accuracy that it had been hacked by at least five foreign intelligence agencies, and that things had been taken from that.
But, "you suspect".
How about this: I suspect that they setup a private email server to keep out of the reach of FOIA attempts, because of Lord knows what scandals would have been unearthed. Those emails are out there, many of them possibly on the Weiner laptop or elsewhere, and time will tell if there will ever be any justice served for these Federal crimes.
Which is a token gesture and we all know it. Most private companies have better cybersecurity than the "STATE DEPARTMENT."
> That's demonstrably been proven to be completely false (ClintonEmail.com is not exactly a "obscure" domain, BTW) -- and by her team's own admission, as there was hack attempt after hack attempt:
Email servers ... seeing hack attempts via direct and content-driven means? WOW. THAT ONLY HAPPENS TO STATE OFFICIALS! MY EMAILS CERTAINLY HAVE NEVER SEEN MALICIOUS LINKS.
> I suspect that they setup a private email server to keep out of the reach of FOIA attempts, because of Lord knows what scandals would have been unearthed.
I hope that you extend this righteous anger to Pence and the Trump campaign for doing everything they can to keep campaign planning materials hidden by (curiously) successfully invoking attorney-client privilege.
> I'd only like to know why
> you're making personal
I miss detox "week".
The vast majority of stories that ban filtered were about proposed human rights abuses by Trump's advisory board, and subsequent details about how foreign intelligence agencies helped the conservative candidate without the hobble of campaign finance laws or ethical considerations.
Or are you mad I'm here, being pugnacious and irreverent about the more absurd allegations leveled against various candidates (which I have done on behalf of Trump as well, if you check my post history far enough).
What, exactly, do you miss? And if so, why then did you click into this thread and read into something nested 3 deep?
I submit if you cast a vote in this country you should not be afforded the luxury of looking away from the results of that vote.
"Code words" is pizzagate talk, even if you're not aware of that. It's the literal phrasing echoed throughout twitter and gab used to justify arbitrary accusations.
I'm not sure how you can treat that kind of nasty and totally senseless fear mongering with anything but irreverence.
Justify it however you want, there was some very chilling revelations in those emails. I want politicians solving problems, not building press angles.
The most chilling part was that having your pizza restaurant mentioned in the emails can lead to lunatics showing up with guns to threaten your staff.
What Russia family connections? How about these:
https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/927 (see page 61 of the attachment)
Why the concern if there's nothing to be concerned about? (https://wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/225, https://www.wikileaks.org/podesta-emails/emailid/370)
Regarding codespeak... it's starting to go mainstream. Google what Ben Swann's been up to.
Or do you think that anytime money is mentioned bad things are happening? So then how do you feel about Trump?
Does simply having 'Russia' show up in a word search mean something sinister?
If you're like this about Clinton (much ado about nothing, exaggeration of any tiny mention of anything), why aren't you absolutely nuclear about Trump, who has actual solid links to actual corruption and potential treasonous behaviour?
The Clinton Foundation does good? Like they did in Haiti, right??
It's okay, you just haven't dug deep enough. The key is understanding where the proposed pipelines are located. Hint: they're in line with various overthrown governments; not coincidental.
Note that I'm not saying you should dig any deeper, as it's not exactly productive time and this is the job of the investigators, but it's interesting to watch play out.
Best question lately is "Where is Eric Braverman?"...
Remind me, which side of that election is now alleged to have been talking to FSB the whole time?
> No one has the actual Pentagon Papers outside of very specific news agencies
is patently false, they're available in full from the National Archives: https://www.archives.gov/research/pentagon-papers
There are very good arguments made elsewhere in this thread about releasing in full vs. releasing to a group that has the ability and willingness to appropriately vet documents before release. Certainly Wikileaks' blanket release caused a large amount of unnecessary controversy that could have been strategically avoided, and would have served as less distraction from the issues presented in them.
Also, intention is relevant in criminal law. Was the intention to right a wrong or to throw a depression induced tantrum? There was a substantial amount of evidence on this matter.
If you misuse the term, you make it more difficult for legitimate whistle blowers to get the protection they deserve.
Since you went there:
Oxford dictionary says: "A person who informs on a person or organization engaged in an illicit activity."
What is illicit? : "Forbidden by law, rules, or custom."
Is what the cables actually revealed customary? Probably.
By the definition set forth in the law, but it's not just crimes. There is a list of specifically acceptably things.
The fact that it's even feasible to release confidential information about government action implies that there is some ability for individuals to interpret the law. Otherwise, if the government does it, you just have to accept it as legal.
Sometimes even governments' actions are illegal.
That recognition does make it easier (than it was) to counter, but there are still challenges, and they're unlikely to disappear soon.
(Note, I'm not arguing that I think any particular actions are or are not criminal. I'm too ignorant of the details to meaningfully speak one way or the other.)
I'm not sure what you are saying here. Using a euphemism doesn't make torture any better.
People have different definitions of what constitutes torture. There is also a legal definition of torture (which may be vague, but will be determined judicially if it comes to that). By definition, torture is against the law. As people have different definitions of what constitutes torture, some acts will meet the legal definition, while others will not even though they meets the definition held by someone else.
I happen to agree with you that "enhanced interrogation techniques" is a euphemism for torture. By defining certain acts as such, it gives proponents of using such acts a legal basis of arguing that they're not torture, whether it's ultimately justified or not.
Does that make sense? I'm not asking whether or not you agree with the distinction (which would be hard to do as I haven't defined which acts fall under either). I'm just asking whether the argument follows, that you understand why the language matters.
A similar distinction is made for killing in war and murder. Some people believe all killing is wrong and murder. That said, there's a legal distinction between the two. Which term is applied is legally important.
As if anybody will ever do a background check and say "gasp, you have a conviction".
I believe they wanted to keep this secret not because it hurt us to leak some secret, it was to hide the fact that every president from Truman on had lied about their actions to get us more involved in vietnam. It's still pretty shocking today. Read the wikipedia page for more info.
I don't think it will happen, but I'd be happy if Obama were somehow able to legally forgive Snowden for his whistle blowing also.
- The Marshall Project
I highly recommend subscribing to the Marshall Project Opening Statement: https://www.themarshallproject.org/subscribe
Is it really manipulation? Most/all world leaders have done a lot of good and a lot of bad. You can be angry at both the outgoing and incoming administration. There is no need to pick sides. Hopefully commuting this sentence will decrease any deterrence the administration has given to whistleblowers, because we need them to hold our governments accountable more than ever. Any checks and balances we think we have don't seem to be working.
The real problem with all of those things is that they are politically impossible to roll back, unless the perceived cost exceeds the perceived benefit. Until your best friend ends up on a kill list, that isn't going to happen.
Imagine the following scenario: President Obama ends NSA spying, kills the drone problem, gets rid of kill lists (and presumably also killing), and stops torture (the one and only useless thing on this list). Following that, any terrorism-related incident occurs. The right destroys him for weakening our country (as they are already doing regardless). The left destroys him for weakening our country. And the trick is, predator drones, kill lists, and presumably NSA spying (which will be even more useful with the newly announced inter-agency collaboration) all do help achieve our foreign policy goals (mostly dead terrorists). They also help achieve our domestic policy goals, which partially include not having lots of deployed soldiers dying.
We can't even roll back the TSA, which is widely known to be useless, despite long waits, missed flights, thefts, bizarre restrictions, and all the other things people love about post-9/11 air travel.
For better or worse (mostly for worse), "the American voter" does not care in the slightest about scary brown people being killed (usually deservedly) in a desert half a world away.
President Obama is doing what the American people want, and right now that means commuting sentences, spying, and killing people in the desert.
I agree Obama is doing what the American people want, but he did not inherit all of these programs. E.g. he substantially expanded the program for drone strikes: http://www.nytimes.com/roomfordebate/2016/01/12/reflecting-o...
They're a nearly ideal weapon. There isn't a military on this planet that would not choose to employ them over almost any other tactic.
As far as I am aware that guy leaked the data in bulk without looking at it, and without any knowledge of the US diplomacy, and the leaks didn't expose any major wrongdoing. Only some gory videos, that don't really teach us anything (everyone knows bombs make "collateral damages", the US army even maintains statistics on them). And everything I read from people who reviewed the diplomatic cables suggest that US diplomats are doing rather well their jobs.
I am a libertarian, pro-pardoning Snowden, who did expose deliberately major wrong doings. But I am struggling to call Manning a whistleblower.
I suggest you turn your scepticism to 11 and go watch it, see if you still feel the same way. https://collateralmurder.wikileaks.org/
(warning: if watching civilians, journalists and children being killed in cold blood bothers you, maybe don't go watch it, just read about it instead)
The new bit was the video itself.
You don't have to speculate, you can just read the wikipedia page.
a reporter for the Washington Post was able to reconstruct the
incident and write a book about it without seeing the video.
No it isn't because that's not what happened. As to the page, the page about the incident. I'm starting to think you don't really know much about the details and want to debate this from first principles. That's not going to be very fruitful.
As to the page, the page about the incident.
The incident had been reported and covered by the press, there was
no 'government cover up'. The new bit was the video itself.
you can just read the wikipedia page
You want me to direct you to basic information…you can trivially look up yourself
It would be great for everyone reading this thread, to understand the material on which you're basing these claims.
You should read the beginning of the thread.
Or type 'collateral murder incident' into google.
Googling "collateral murder incident" does give a number of results, which does include a Wikipedia page, but it's not one that has been referenced in this discussion.
It's important for honest, rational discussion, to cite sources - especially those sources you depend upon. Unless you specifically state your sources, it's hard to understand the argument you're presenting, and the basis for your argument. Without a citation, it's essentially arguing that the Emperor's new clothes really are golden, and we have to believe that, because they really are golden.
Further, when I type "Collateral Murder" into the Wikipedia search, it brings me directly to the page about the airstrike that pvg has repeatedly referenced, anchored at the section about the video.
Just what are you trying to pull here?
which does include a Wikipedia page, but it's not one
that has been referenced in this discussion.
it returned the exact Wikipedia page that pvg told you it would return
Perhaps you could post the URL of that Wikipedia page?
Is it so terribly hard to copy and paste the URL of the page which is being cited?
After all, you have referred to this specific Wikipedia page in your comment, but you have still not provided the URL.
This is war. The video clearly shows that soldiers made a decision made on an honest, although tragic, mistake. They have to make this kind of decisions all the time - and I fail to see how anyone can say, from information that was available to them, that the decision was in any way wrong.
The fact that this story had to be covered up says more about idiocy of public and the media that would've (and did) make a baseless witchhunt. I finally 'got it' after watching "Eye in the sky" (spoilers!): if hollywood screenwriters and moviegoers really think that killing one innocent girl to prevent two suicide bombings is some kind of a complicated moral dilemma that's worth more than three seconds of deliberating, then may be this kind of public really shouldn't be trusted with classified information.
Um, they fired on a van despite realizing that it had come to pick up the wounded. Geneva Conventions clearly state that hospitals, both fixed and mobile, ambulances, hospital ships, medical aircraft, and medical personnel are not to be fired upon.
(You'll also note the trigger-happy attitude of the gunner. He kept begging for permission to engage, and at one point got pretty frustrated that he was having to wait. Like the OP said: chilling.)
This van didn't have any markings to indicate that it was a dedicated medical unit. What about enemy combatants that are performing medical tasks at the moment? As far as I understand, they're fair game.
> (You'll also note the trigger-happy attitude of the gunner. He kept begging for permission to engage, and at one point got pretty frustrated that he was having to wait. Like the OP said: chilling.)
He was looking at people, that (in his view, conceived by a completely honest mistake) were there to kill his comrades in arms. His attitude, being eager to kill them, is completely reasonable — war is a constant kill or be killed situation, and allowing your enemy to evacuate the wounded combatants mean that they will later come back and kill you or your comrades in arms.
Once again, your reaction confirms my main point: the general public doesn't bother to think the situation through and judges actions made in war without the necessary context. Which just confirms that this kind of transparency is just as good as determining whether or not climate change is real (or if vaccination is harmful) through general election without any minimal education requirements.
We see a guy carrying what looks like a rocket launcher. (it's a really really long telephoto lens) He is sneaking around with the enemy (sort of an embedded journalist) and peaking out from around corners, appearing to point a rocket launcher at the US military. Unsurprisingly, he gets blown to bits.
We see an enemy hop over a wall while getting shot at. A minivan stops to get him. Note that it was common for the enemy to transport people and weapons in similar vehicles. People who are not involved in the conflict would be nuts to be driving around in the battlefield. The minivan is thus also shot up. It happens to contain kids... so some child abuser brought kids to a battlefield, WTF.
Note that the unedited (long) version of the video shows some of the "victims" carrying weapons. This wasn't an intentional slaughter of innocents, even if a few innocents did stupidly wander into a battlefield and get killed.
If you call this "murder", you might as well call all war murder. That's a very political position to be taking. War sucks; this shouldn't be news to anybody.
So you've never actually watched (or read about) the Collateral Murder video, huh? It's a helicopter crew killing people with guns, not bombs. And they kill exactly who they intend to.
Maybe don't form strong opinions when you don't have the slightest clue what the facts are.
I'm not pro-Irak war, quite the contrary. But the fact that civilians have been killed isn't exactly a hidden secret that was uncovered by the leaks
> Maybe don't form strong opinions when you don't have the slightest clue what the facts are.
This sort of insults has nothing to do on HN