Saturday, 8 June 2013

Bradley Manning - Australian commentary

Despite Australia being a very close ally of the US, and despite our gov jumping when the US says so, the same isn't true with journalists here. Paul McGeough of the Sydney Morning Herald discusses the Manning case as most do down here; a show trial with the outcome already decided. He also questions the US gov assertions about Manning, and the secrecy surrounding the trial. It's a bit of a read and well worth while. This is a bit of it:
Government spokesmen, including former secretary of state Hillary Clinton, would have us believe that the sky fell in the aftermath of the staggered leaks, but when the rhetorical angst was put to one side, it seemed that the consequence of the leaks was limited to a hefty dose of embarrassment in Washington. 

No American supporter of democracy could complain about their purported role in firing up the anti-regime resentment that fuelled the Arab Spring revolutions and by its own admission, Washington has not been able to link the death of any American or any of their Iraqi and Afghan helpers to the Manning leaks. 


Intriguingly, the government is limiting its sense of the potential audience for the WikiLeaks material to terrorists - ''the enemy''. Observing the trial, American Civil Liberties Union lawyer Ben Wizner found this striking, citing the Abu Ghraib torture pictures as he told The New York Times: "Sometimes what may be helpful to the enemy is also indispensable to the public in a functioning democracy." Read more

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