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Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

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Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Bowspearer » Thu Jun 06, 2013 6:42 pm

Since I noticed that the rules didn't explicitly ban topics that skated into the political, I figured it was ok posting this here.

As people would no doubt be aware, a few years ago, Bradley Manning decided to play whistle blower when he was disturbed by evidence of war crimes he had personally witnessed - which he subsequently turned over to Wikileaks. Several governments were embarrassed by this, including the US government.

Let's face it, explaining away war crimes when there are videos of helicopter gunships massacring unarmed civilians (including journalists) and documents demonstrating, at least 4.5 million Afghan casualties due to US forces between 2002-2009
(3.4 million of them unarmed civilians and 2.5 million of them children under the age of 5)that the Taliban have in fact been replaced with drug warlords, that more than 60% of the world's Heroin has been restored back to the global drug market - it's kind of hard to explain away.

So rather than being heralded a hero and a man acting in the interests of human rights, he was held illegally for over 800 days and is likely to spend the rest of his life in jail, for simply having a moral conscience and believing the rules of war and Geneva Convention should apply to everybody.

In response, many people, including prominent celebrities, have gotten behind the "I AM BRADLEY MANNING" campaign and recently this took an interesting twist.

Believing that a man of peace who has risked his life and freedom to that end should be properly recognised and honoured.

So a short while ago, they started a petition to see Bradley Manning awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, with the goal of getting 75,000 signatures - they currently have over 60,000. I've signed it and I've sent a mass email to everyone in my hotmail address book encouraging them to sign it.

However I figured it was worth putting up here - as the rules didn't seem to explicitly rule it out and there may well be people here who want to get behind the petition and didn't know it existed. For anyone interested in signing the petition, it can be found here: http://act.rootsaction.org/p/dia/action ... n_KEY=7612

I'll leave it upto people if they want to get behind it or not, but I thought it was a worth cause to put out there.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby njb902 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 7:18 pm

What a joke. The only thing Manning accomplished was to get himself arrested and create strife. The winner of the peace prize should be someone who actually did something to lessen world tensions. Manning did the exact opposite by releasing that data to wiki leaks. Who then went on to publish the whole damned thing, regardless of what was in it, because they have the misguided theory that there should be no government secrets. He not only betrayed his country, but he helped, though not without our government's own stupidity, to further alienate the USA from the world. Which in turn further destabilized world relations, so no the man should simply go to prison as he deserves.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Bowspearer » Thu Jun 06, 2013 7:57 pm

First off, no country should be above international law, no country should be allowed to coverup genocide they have perpetuated and no human life swhould be worth less than another human life on the grounds of age, gender, creed or race.

Secondly as the legal precedent at the Nuremberg Trials demonstrates, "just following orders" is never a valid legal defense for committing war crimes - which is exactly what Bradley Manning exposed, placing himself on the right side of history in doing so.

The fact is that if a country is alienated from the world for committing war crimes then it is getting what it deserves. If the US wants to stop alienating itself from the rest of the world, then there's a simple way it can do just that - stop murdering millions of innocent civilians, including millions of innocent children and then acting like it's above international law.

Why is genocide by Sadam Hussein, Stalin, Pol Pot or Pinochet abhorrent and yet genocide by Bush and Obama "justified" to you?

The fact is that considering the scale of the genocide in the Middle East due to the "coalition of the willing", there is only one word to describe it - holocaust.

Why shouldn't someone who exposed war crimes and fought for victims of genocide be regarded as a hero?

After all isn't a true patriot someone who defends their country from external [b]and internal[b] threats?

As for your claims of who the award should go to, you claim
The winner of the peace prize should be someone who actually did something to lessen world tensions.


Yet Barrack Obama, one of the most recent recipients of it, has inflamed tensions in Syria and Libya by backing Al Qaeda (you know, the terrorist organisation which was so evil that we all had to invade Afghanistan to stop), has engaged in war-mongering posturing with China and has engaged in a genocidal drone warfare campaign in Pakistan. The only thing he's even remotely done in terms of stability, is backing brutal and repressionist dictatorships such as Bahrain and Uzbekistan - even arming them. The last guy I saw on the screen using that kind of notion for how to achieve peace, went by the name of Palpatine.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby njb902 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 8:44 pm

The United States is not committing genocide in Afghanistan or Iraq. The United States has engaged in a limited war in both of those countries, civilian casualties, while regrettable, do happen. I'm sure there have been cases of murder and willful destruction of civilian property, which should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the UCMJ, but calling it genocide is a exaggeration.

I also agree with you that governments should not be allowed to get away with covering up military crime. You are however missing part of my point, the war's in Iraq and Afghanistan where only the topics of a portion of the documents stolen. Documents that were about our opinions of other countries and thier leadership where also stolen. I believe that hurt our standings with other countries more so than the documents on the wars, I believe other countries seem to be more knowledgeable about what happens Iraq and Afghanistan then we here in the states are.

Manning could have went up the chain of command or went to the militarie's civilian oversight. Instead he betrayed his oath and his country by giving unrelated documents to a inappropriate source.

As for president Obama being given the peace prize I agree that he didn't deserve it.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby njb902 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 8:56 pm

Oh and those numbers of civilian casualties are way way way off, by like a couple of orders of magnitude.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Bowspearer » Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:29 pm

njb902 wrote:The United States is not committing genocide in Afghanistan or Iraq. The United States has engaged in a limited war in both of those countries, civilian casualties, while regrettable, do happen. I'm sure there have been cases of murder and willful destruction of civilian property, which should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the UCMJ, but calling it genocide is a exaggeration.


First of all, no - the USMJ should have absolutely nothing to do with prosecution of US soldiers for war crimes. Any and all war crimes should be tried by the International Criminal Court at the Hague. This holds true for any country whose soldiers stand accused of war crimes. Yet the US continued to show a flagrant disregard for International law by doing so- which btw is why the US is so hated throughout the world (ironically if it lived up to the ideals of the Founding Fathers in its foreign policy, it would actually be one of the most loved and respected countries in the world).

A classic example of this was Abu Ghirab. Had those war criminals been tried before the Hague they would have been either behind bars for 20 years or hanging from a gallows. However the US did exactly what happens when a nation tries itself for war crimes - turned the proceedings into a farce, created a few scapegoats and handed out wrist slaps.


Second of all the numbers once And exactly how far past 3.5 million unarmed civilians in Afghanistan, several million unarmed civillians in Iraq, indisrciminate use of an internationally recognised chemical weapon like white phosphorus in urban areas and millions of refugees (3-4 million in Afghanistan alone, before genocide ceases to be an exaggeration in your mind?

njb902 wrote:I also agree with you that governments should not be allowed to get away with covering up military crime. You are however missing part of my point, the war's in Iraq and Afghanistan where only the topics of a portion of the documents stolen.


Yet it is these documents, rather than a few embarrassing cables which have been what has prompted the "aiding the enemy" charge, as these documents have blown apart the heavily scripted narrative of the war of terror in the media which the US and her allies have crafted that has them baying for blood. The fact is that if noone were aboove the law, Howard, Gillard, Bush, Obama, Blair, Brown and Cameron, as well as others who were equally culpable, would be either swinging from a gallows or spending decades behind bars, and the documents on Iraq and Afghanistan exposed war crimes they would rather keep buried.

njb902 wrote:Documents that were about our opinions of other countries and their leadership where also stolen. I believe that hurt our standings with other countries more so than the documents on the wars, I believe other countries seem to be more knowledgeable about what happens Iraq and Afghanistan then we here in the states are.


They also embarrassed Australia as well, but you don't see me being angry at wikileaks for that. The fact is that if we are to have an accurate historical record, these documents should be privy to public scrutiny. The fact is if said diplomats actually practiced the art of diplomacy properly, their would never have been anything embarrassing in said cables to begin with.

njb902 wrote:Manning could have went up the chain of command or went to the militarie's civilian oversight. Instead he betrayed his oath and his country by giving unrelated documents to a inappropriate source.


That is an incredibly naive and shortsighted understanding of the situation on your part. The fact is that this was coming from the top of the chain of command, under a Patriot Act where any dissent, no matter how valid, can see someone regarded as an enemy of the state.

Decisions were made from the top to open Abu Ghirab. Decisions were made from the top to ship prisoners over to Egypt to bypass the Geneva Convention so suspects could be brutally tortured. Decisions were made from the top to run Guantanimo Bay as a one stop torture shop. The fact is that said war crimes ran right up to the level of Bush upto 2008, and then subsequently Obama. In that climate where war crimes go right to the top, and where the military operates under the paradigm of the Nuremberg defense, just what kind of outcomes do you think are going to be achieved by running it up the very chain of command besides it being buried?

What you think he should have done sounds great in theory, however in reality, the whole reason that people become whistle-blowers is because they clearly recognise that accountability within the chain of command has deteriorated. That is precisely what he did. If you have an issue with why he didn't take it up the chain of command, then I put it to you that you need to ask questions about why he couldn't do that.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby njb902 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:36 pm

I must have been stationed in another reality.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Bowspearer » Thu Jun 06, 2013 11:04 pm

njb902 wrote:Oh and those numbers of civilian casualties are way way way off, by like a couple of orders of magnitude.


On the contrary, when you look at the UN Population Division data, accounting for the proper baseline that's what you wind up with. Furthermore it fits with the UNHCR data on Afghan refugees.

Furthermore I just pulled up an interesting section from a news article examining the Bradley Manning trial:

A legal duty to report war crimes

Manning is charged with crimes for sending hundreds of thousands of classified files, documents and videos, including the "Collateral Murder" video, the "Iraq War Logs," the "Afghan War Logs" and State Department cables to Wikileaks. Many of the things he transmitted contain evidence of war crimes.

The "Collateral Murder" video depicts a US Apache attack helicopter killing 12 civilians and wounding two children on the ground in Baghdad in 2007. The helicopter then fired on and killed the people trying to rescue the wounded. Finally, a US tank drove over one of the bodies, cutting the man in half. These acts constitute three separate war crimes.

Manning fulfilled his legal duty to report war crimes. He complied with his legal duty to obey lawful orders but also his legal duty to disobey unlawful orders.

Section 499 of the Army Field Manual states, "Every violation of the law of war is a war crime." The law of war is contained in the Geneva Conventions.

Article 85 of the First Protocol to the Geneva Conventions describes making the civilian population or individual civilians the object of attack as a grave breach. The firing on and killing of civilians shown in the "Collateral Murder" video violated this provision of Geneva.

Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions requires that the wounded be collected and cared for. Article 17 of the First Protocol states that the civilian population "shall be permitted, even on their own initiative, to collect and care for the wounded." That article also says, "No one shall be harmed . . . for such humanitarian acts." The firing on rescuers portrayed in the "Collateral Murder" video violates these provisions of Geneva.

Finally, Section 27-10 of the Army Field Manual states that "maltreatment of dead bodies" is a war crime. When the Army jeep drove over the dead body, it violated this provision.

Enshrined in the US Army Subject Schedule No. 27-1 is "the obligation to report all violations of the law of war." At his guilty plea hearing, Manning explained that he had gone to his chain of command and asked them to investigate the "Collateral Murder" video and other "war porn," but his superiors refused. "I was disturbed by the response to injured children," Manning stated. He was also bothered by the soldiers depicted in the video who "seemed to not value human life by referring to [their targets] as 'dead bastards.' "


njb902 wrote:I must have been stationed in another reality.


Or maybe you were incapable of seeing the true nature of the actions of the "Coalition of the Willing" while you were there.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby njb902 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 11:36 pm

Or your wrong, which is a better bet. There is no way we killed 17% of the population. Afghanistan had a population of 26 million in 2001 and today it has a population of 30 million. That's a 3.7 growth rate just accounting for "civilian casualties", not taking into account natural death, enemy combatants, emigration, and unnatural death.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Bowspearer » Fri Jun 07, 2013 2:21 am

njb902 wrote:Or your wrong, which is a better bet. There is no way we killed 17% of the population.


The facts don't lie.

To quote from a blog post by an interested party:

Indeed a huge Elephant in the Room scandal is that while the Mainstream Media (MSM) report the more juicy and personal WikiLeaks diplomatic releases, they simply won't report horrendous Truths that are readily accessible from authoritative UN, scientific and other sources e.g. 1.4 million violent deaths in post-invasion Iraq (US Just Foreign Policy), 0.3 million annual under-5 infant deaths in Occupied Afghanistan ( UNICEF), 2.6 million under-5 infant deaths in Occupied Afghanistan and 2.0 million under-5 infant deaths in Iraq under Sanctions in Occupation (UN Population Division) and 1,000 child deaths each day in the overseas American Empire under Obama (Google "Hey, hey, USA").
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby njb902 » Fri Jun 07, 2013 2:26 am

Edit: I miss read your first post.

Have you actually read that "article"?
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Bowspearer » Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:19 am

njb902 wrote:Edit: I miss read your first post.

Have you actually read that "article"?


Yes I have and the numbers match up with elsewhere. I was simply quoting it because the breakdown would give you a starting point to correlate the numbers with if you wanted to look into the numbers first.

Furthermore there is nothing inaccurate in the article or hateful. I'm guessing you were going to play the "antisemite" card there when it referred to Israeeli threats to Australian security. However the fact is that MOSAD has been caught out at least once in stealing the identity theft of Australian ex-pats. Furthermore as you've already admitted culpability in the genocide in Afghans and as the word semite actually means arab, playing such a card would be a case of throwing a stone in a glass house on your part.

The fact is though that your entire response has been completely debunked at this point and all you have responded with is conjecture. While I can understand why you would be defensive, there comes a time when discretion is the better part of valour.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby njb902 » Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:39 am

You can believe whatever you wish. However don't put words into my mouth. We were having a pleasant conversation. Why ruin it? I'm done here, I'm sure you'll be happy with your "victory".
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Bowspearer » Fri Jun 07, 2013 3:49 am

njb902 wrote:You can believe whatever you wish. However don't put words into my mouth. We were having a pleasant conversation. Why ruin it? I'm done here, I'm sure you'll be happy with your "victory".


If you're choosing to walk away, that is your choice, however let's look at what was actually said.


You said:
Have you actually read that "article"?



To which I responded preemptively with:

I'm guessing you were going to play the "antisemite" card there when it referred to Israeeli threats to Australian security.


I didn't say you were going to, I said I was guessing you were - which gave you the option of clarifying if I had guessed wrongly. In no way does that put words in your mouth.
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Superwheeljack » Mon Jun 10, 2013 1:33 pm

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Umm, Obama shouldn't have gotten the peace prize
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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby RhA » Mon Jun 10, 2013 1:57 pm

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Re: Bradley Manning Peace Prize petition

Postby Shadowman » Mon Jun 10, 2013 6:16 pm

Motto: "May God have mercy on my enemies, because I sure as hell won't."
Bowspearer wrote:I didn't say you were going to, I said I was guessing you were - which gave you the option of clarifying if I had guessed wrongly. In no way does that put words in your mouth.


That's the definition "putting words in my mouth."

The peace prize should be given to someone who actually did something to forward peace. The tension that would be caused by implicating the US in genocide is the opposite of peace.

Also, who puts together the numbers of "civilian deaths?" Going through each and every body, determining whether they were a combatant or not, and how they died?
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