Monday, August 17, 2015

Chelsea Manning Is One Of The Few Oath Keepers You Should Take Seriously

Chelsea Manning saw a threat to our Constitution and did something about it. She's a real "oath keeper" in the only way that that word actually matters. But she didn't point a gun at anyone. She didn't needlessly threaten anyone's life. She didn't spread bizarre conspiracy theories and increase racial divisions.

She leaked information that harmed the ability of your government to lie to you and to keep secrets from you about the number of civilians it has killed in this endless war in a thousand hidden places. A 2013 New York Times article describes the files she released:

Among other things, the files also exposed the abuse of detainees by Iraqi officers under the watch of American forces and showed that civilian deaths during the Iraq war were most likely significantly higher than official estimates.

The Huffington Post adds:

As of this month, the Iraq Body Count's Josh Dougherty related, the organization had added 4,000 deaths to its database as a result of Manning's leaks and was likely to add another 10,000.

The article continues:

Manning's leaks included more than 700 Guantanamo detainee files, many revealing that the U.S. had little reason to continue holding its prisoners. The 250,000 State Department cables he leaked detailed U.S. diplomatic pressure on foreign countries to ignore or excuse extraordinary renditions carried out by the CIA in apparent violation of international law. They also showed that the U.S. routinely failed to investigate reports of prisoner abuse and summary execution by the Iraqi military.

Chelsea Manning has shown courage in the face of a kind of danger that would have destroyed the men who call themselves Oath Keepers parading with weapons on your TV.

Right now in prison she faces possible indefinite solitary confinement over a charge of having contraband items - a magazine and an expired tube of toothpaste. It's obvious the administration intends to turn her into an example so that others will not do the important work of letting you know what your government is doing in your name.

Make no mistake - there are people out there who know exactly what US forces have done. They are no doubt preparing revenge. Which will in turn justify the next round of attacks overseas and restrictions on your freedom at home. Please contact your representative about her. And please sign this petition to express your support for a hero.

Yes, a hero. You might be confused by all the propaganda, by the stupid parades and the obscene movies, but this is what a hero looks like.

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