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The New York Times’ Crocodile Tears For Private Manning

Posted on March 15 2011 12:20 pm
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The New York Times ran an editorial today entitled “the Abuse of Private Manning.”  Their crocodile tears for this alleged traitor are sickening.

The Times editors complain that Pfc. Bradley Manning is being abused in prison while confined on charges that the editors minimize as simply

handing government files to WikiLeaks

What the Times editors  leave out is that the charges rise to treason. They include “aiding the enemy,” wrongfully causing intelligence to be published on the Internet where it could be accessed by “the enemy,” theft of public records, and transmitting defense information. The charges stem from Manning’s alleged leaking of thousands of classified military documents relating to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to WikiLeaks as well as thousands more State Department documents.

The allegations of abuse which so upset the Times include solitary confinement, presumably for his own safety, and removal of all clothes at night, presumably to prevent Private Manning from injuring himself.

The editors complain that Manning has not even been tried, let alone convicted, on any charges. True, but again they leave out an important fact: the delay in bringing Manning to trial is because of his own attorneys, who have had his mental capacity evaluated.

The Times editors also leave out the fact that if Manning is being mistreated, he has judicial recourse under Article 13 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice which provides protections against unlawful pretrial punishment including the possible dismissal of the charges against him. Until Manning’s defense counsel makes a motion for relief under Article 13 and there are findings of fact to support the allegations of mistreatment, all that the Times can rely on are the whining of Manning, his lawyers’ complaints and the usual anti-American propaganda of the hard Left.

At his news conference last week, President Obama was asked whether he agreed with State Department spokesman, PJ Crowley, who resigned after claiming that the treatment of Bradley Manning by the Pentagon was ridiculous, counterproductive and stupid. Obama responded:

With respect to Private Manning, I have actually asked the Pentagon whether or not the procedures that have been taken in terms of his confinement are appropriate and are meeting our basic standards. They assure me that they are. I can’t go into details about some of their concerns, but some of this has to do with Private Manning’s safety as well.

Marine Col Dave Lapan, acting deputy assistant secretary of defense, told United Press International by e-mail:

Pfc. Manning is housed in [a] one-man cell at Quantico, like all others in maximum or medium security at the facility. He has rights and privileges to food, mental health counseling, medical care, recreation, television, visitors, outside mail, and regular communications with his attorney.

In recent days, as the result of concerns for Pfc. Manning’s personal safety, his undergarments were taken from him during sleeping hours. Pfc. Manning at all times had a bed and a blanket to cover himself. He was not made to stand naked for morning count but, on one day, he chose to do so. There were no female personnel present at the time. Pfc. Manning has since been issued a garment to sleep in at night. He is clothed in a standard jumpsuit during the day.

If Private Manning is proven to have committed the crimes of which he is charged, he deserves the death penalty. If he is proven innocent, then he should not only be released, but awarded compensation for any provable abuse while in detention. His lawyers would do the country and Manning himself a favor by not using any more tactics to delay his trial even further.

Joseph Klein is the author of a recent book entitled Lethal Engagement: Barack Hussein Obama, the United Nations and Radical Islam

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