Stop The Torture of Pvt. Bradley Manning


Submitted by Lawrence Rafferty, (rafflaw), Guest Blogger


The nightmare started back in July of 2010.  Pvt. Bradley Manning was arrested and detained in the Brig at the Quantico Marine Base on allegations that he stole and then leaked classified documents to Wikileaks.  The conditions that Pvt. Manning has been held under have been outrageous from the start. He has suffered shackling, solitary confinement and he has not been allowed normal contact with visitors and the outside world.  His visitors have been denied access to him and now the latest humiliating tactic being used by the Department of Defense is to force Pvt. Manning to strip naked in his cell for hours! 

“All Americans should be horrified and outraged by yesterday’s revelations that PFC Bradley Manning, already being held under Maximum Security and a Prevention of Injury (POI) order, has now been forced to spend seven hours each night and morning stripped naked:  Last night, PFC Manning was inexplicably stripped of all clothing by the Quantico Brig. He remained in his cell, naked, for the next seven hours. At 5:00 a.m., the Brig sounded the wake-up call for the detainees. At this point, PFC Manning was forced to stand naked at the front of his cell.  The Duty Brig Supervisor (DBS) arrived shortly after 5:00 a.m. When he arrived, PFC Manning was called to attention. The DBS walked through the facility to conduct his detainee count. Afterwards, PFC Manning was told to sit on his bed. About ten minutes later, a guard came to his cell to return his clothing.” ‘ Firedoglake   How can a detainee who has not been convicted of anything and has been an exemplary prisoner be subjected to this kind of treatment?  It appears that this latest degrading treatment is in response to a remark made by Manning when his Article 138 request to be removed from the suicide watch was denied.   David E. Combs, Esq.  

‘“Brig officials notified defense lawyers that mental health providers were not consulted in deciding to strip manning of his clothes.  “This type of degrading treatment is inexcusable and without justification. It is an embarrassment to our military justice system and should not be tolerated,” Coombs said. “No other detainee at the Brig is forced to endure this type of isolation and humiliation.”’  RawStory   We have a situation where the United State government has been holding a prisoner who has only recently been charged with leaking classified documents and more recently the charges were amended to add in a charge of “aiding the enemy”.  This is not some convicted killer that requires some tougher sanctions to keep him under control.  This is a soldier who has been a model prisoner who just wants to be treated according to the law and according to normal military procedures. 

Didn’t President Obama make it a campaign issue that he considered the Bush interrogation methods as torture and that those methods were illegal and that they would not be continued under his administration?  I realize that the claim has been made that those methods have been outlawed at Gitmo, but I wonder why they haven’t been outlawed at Quantico?  If Pvt. Manning is guilty of leaking classified documents, then prove it in a trial or court-martial. 

Is there another reason why Manning has been the recipient of these harsh measures?  Could the Obama Administration and the Department of Defense just be embarrassed that the leaked documents actually showed that they had been lying to the American people by taking official steps to prevent Bush-era torture from being investigated internationally?  Anyone who reads about the horrible treatment that Private Manning has been receiving from our government, should be ashamed and outraged.  What are we going to do about it?

Additional Sources:  Emptywheel

Submitted by Lawrence Rafferty, (rafflaw), Guest Blogger

157 thoughts on “Stop The Torture of Pvt. Bradley Manning”

  1. infantryman, you know this how? He has not been tried and no proof has been put on. There has not been any proof produced that he did what he is accused of.

    Also, in the law, there is something called proximate cause. What proximate cause evidence do you have that any action of Private Manning was responsible for the death of anyone?

    Serious claims require serious credible evidence.

  2. Rafflaw,
    Thanks, for your input! Being stripped and searched, is an every day thing and he needs to get use to it. Yes, this happens prior to being found guilty or not. There were several deaths in Afghanistan that are related to this persons actions.
    Bill Bowermaster.

  3. i find many of the posts on this board scary and treasoniness YOU MIGHT LIKE THE FACT THAT THE GOVERNMENT IS LYING TO YOU. but I DON”T.

    You might like Your government going into other countries and forcing their way on them I DON’T.

  4. See Paul Krugman’s column in the NY Times (“Another Inside Job”) and compare the treatment of criminals in banks and on Wall Street with the treatment of Manning.

    It seems to me that the wealthy who destroyed our economy (and affected most of the world) should be considered to have aided the enemy and committed treasonable acts.

    But they have the power and control of our Congress, whereas Manning has none, just his lawyer and those of us who whistle in the wind.

    Would Manning be undergoing such treatment if Bank of America or Goldman Sachs supported his rights?

  5. Rafflaw, I too expected better. Obama is easily as ruthless as Bush about not allowing any off-message statements to be made.

    Same thing just happened with the NLRB. It’s targeted for budget cuts and will no doubt to me, have its budget cut. A very mild, short and factual statement went up on the NLRB site on 2-18. It was scrubbed on 2-22 after OMB directed that it be removed in the interest of the Administration speaking with one voice. OPM stated that the President had already made a statement.

    If you follow the link on the NLRB site directing you to the OMB site looking for the President’s statement on the budget proposal there isn’t really one, just the bland, non-specific, rah-rah statement he released on the 14th to Congress.

    I’m getting sick of bait and switch.

  6. ” I expected more from a Democratic administration.” (rafflaw)

    That is an extremely important statement and one worth repeating over and over. Simply because we support certain philosophies and platforms within the Democratic Party does not mean we must be blind followers of all they do. Nor does it mean that our criticisms should be whispered or kept behind closed doors.

  7. Thanks, raff. We are probably preaching to the choir for the most part here, but maybe with our combined expertise, we can offer SOMETHING that might help the case. While driving for eight hours today I also did some mental composition for that diary I plan to post on DKos. It will come up in a few days, but as everyone knows, we are more than distracted at our house.

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