Data requests without a warrant. Government refusing to notify journalists they’re being spied on. Equating journalists and reporting to spies and espionage. Potential “conspiracy to commit espionage” charges. "Virtually every move made by the Justice Department against WikiLeaks has now also been deployed on mainstream US journalists," writes Trevor Timm at Freedom of the Press Foundation.

111 Responses to “Everything done to WikiLeaks is now being done to US reporters”

  1. Wibbly says:

    First they came for the … but I wasn’t a …

    • fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

      I’d actually be interested to know how many of them thought that “Real Reporters” were safe, and it was just those damn hacker kids, and how many knew that the other shoe was on its way toward the ground; but didn’t really have anything to do about it…

      • Vicq_Ruiz says:

         I’d like to know how many of the “real reporters” were just fine with the feds going after bloggers and “hackers”, because they wanted rid of the competition.

    • TooGoodToCheck says:

      First they came for Assange, and I didn’t speak out because he seemed like kind of a douche.
      Then they came for the established professional journalists, and I didn’t speak out because my expectations regarding good government have been lowered so far that it currently counts as a win when the president says he probably won’t use drone strikes against US citizens

      what the hell happened

      • ffabian says:

        Nationalistic blindness happened: Wikileaks and Assange = those foreign hacker traitors got what they deserved for smearing our glorious and brave military.

      • Our own diligence is compromised by the people who call themselves our watchdogs. The Palin Tea Party group made a mockery of everything, and lots credibility. Instead, they were on the right road carrying the wrong baggage, and the message got lost. We need to stand tall, speak firmly and get rid of the “Empty Chair” scenario. Get serious, stop screeching, hollaring and being ineffective. There are better ways to make people take notice of your outrage.

  2. Dave1183 says:

    I’m appalled at how many people really don’t care that all this subterfuge is going on. They really are of the mind that it’s not important if they’re not doing something wrong.

    I wish I was an optimist so I could say we’re overreacting, but I’m afraid that’s not the case. I think it’s too late.

    • thaum says:

      The mainstream media still sucks up to the White House, so they aren’t treated the same way. Ergo, the public don’t really get to hear the full scale of things.

    • Cowicide says:

      I think it’s too late.

      It’s really not too late to take action.  Everyone just needs to do it ASAP.

      • SomeDude says:

        Cool, I had not known of this site.  Among its many options is one to volunteer various forms of expertise;  I’m going to explore writing code for them.

  3. XionEternum says:

    I kind of want to say: “HORRAY!!! EAT THAT PARASITIC JOURNALIST SCUM!!!”
    But even if they are just that, nobody, NOBODY deserves their privacy violated by their own government without at LEAST probable cause. I am eagerly looking forward to when all this spying on our own citizens and civilians blows up in Washington’s faces.
    “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.” Nowhere does that say the people we’re trying to protect should be the ones being spied on. This is systematically taking away our freedom, piece by piece. Sooner or later, the public is going to bite that hand. If any sensible politician (wow… that’s the oximoron of the millennium) is reading this, put an end to this before it causes civil unrest, revolt, revolution, or another civil war.

    • Looking forward to WHAT again?

      Have you seen the sheeple that passes for a citizenry of this once fine nation?

      Civil war is inevitable at this stage. There will be a smallish cadre of “folks who care”. They’ll be labeled, by the Machine, as terrorists, the sheeple will be fooled, and it’s 6-to-5-and-pick-em whether or not the UN steps in (ignoring the US’ security council veto) to defend the right of self-determination for whichever portion of the US got fed up with the bullshit first.

      This story writes itself but the ending is nebulous and badly written. Like a Neal Stephenson book. ;-)

      • Antinous / Moderator says:

        Have you seen the sheeple that passes for a citizenry of this once fine nation?

        Have you seen the memes that pass for comments on this once fine internet?

        • You don’t like my choice of terminology to describe the general populace full of naive, ignorant folks who are more interested in which Real Housewife is yelling at which other one, than at which civil liberties they’re losing? Is THAT the right thing to focus on?

          I understand the “don’t blame the victim” logic, but to a large extent this is a problem “we the citizenry” bring upon ourselves by not holding each other accountable for the collective ignorance of the public.

        • Cocomaan says:

          I’ve never actually seen you argue a point. You just throw around one liners. One has to wonder whether you believe in anything, or just enjoy belittling the beliefs of others.

        • Triple E says:

           I put on my robe and wizard hat.

      • Jake0748 says:

         I was all agreeing with you until you said, “badly written Neal Stephenson book”, “nebulous ending” I can go with.  Then I saw the smiley.  So… what? 

        • Sorry, was (badly) comparing my own little “story that writes itself, but lacks a cohesive ending” to Neal Stephenson’s stories which similarly seem to lack cohesive endings.

          Joke. Failed.

          • Jake0748 says:

             Not to worry.  ;)

          • Gilbert Wham says:

             Reamde wasn’t that bad…

          • rocketpj says:

             I liked it well enough.  Not many people can write a 1000 page action sequence and have me get all the way through it.

          • Agreed. But I think we can all agree that:

            (a) Neal has a long-standing inability to write a good ending to a novel. It happens, rarely, but it’s the exception, not the rule, and
            (b) we are so far off-topic at this point, that it’s a wonder nobody’s gone ModGangsta on us, so let’s end it here. :)

      • Cowicide says:

        Civil war is inevitable at this stage.

        It just started a few minutes ago!! I managed to get it all on video!  It sure was over quickly, though… bummer…

        http://i.imgur.com/PHQhzXs.gif

      • aikimoe says:

        When, exactly, was this nation “finer” than it is now?

        I’m not saying that it’s presently fine, only that I don’t know that it’s ever been. 

      • FoolishOwl says:

        I’m tired of living in a great nation, and would rather live in a democratic nation that makes cuckoo clocks.

      • XionEternum says:

         My apologies, I don’t read enough novels to relate to or appreciate the comparison. I can understand the meaning though having experienced alternative sources of comparison. Regardless, what part of the afore mentioned outcome would suggest a physical civil war? Are people really so disconnected between the real world and internet to think a civil war in the US would largely be out on the streets?

    • Cowicide says:

      civil war.

      Let’s see, some rifles versus hellfire missiles, drones, tanks, etc.

      I predict the civil war lasts about… 10 minutes.  I think it’s a better idea to hit the enemy where it really hurts and regain control of the country that way instead.

      • Rindan says:

        I am not advocating civil war.  I think just voting for someone else would be a lot easier.  As far as I know, 50%+1 is still enough to change the system, and that seems vastly easier than getting a large fraction of the population to go into open rebellion.  

        That said, Americans could fight an epic rebellion and beat the piss out of the US army.  The idea that the US army would win is laughable if a non-trivial portion of the citizenry was in revolt.  Presumably, hellfire missiles, drones, and tanks require fuel, crew, and supplies.  If tiny little Iraq can resist US occupation I am pretty damn sure that the VASTLY more heavily armed and numerous US citizenry living  in a much larger land area with far better cover can resist, um, US occupation.  The structure of the US army means that parts of it would inevitably rebel.  If part of the army is in rebellion, civilian fighters are not wearing uniforms, and the army is more leery of blowing up New York than it is about blowing up Baghdad, it isn’t even a contest.

        Rural areas are armed to the teeth and put jihadist to shame with their shitty guns and pathetic ammo supplies.  Urban areas have concentrations of engineers who could turn ALL THE THINGS into bombs, and are only slightly less armed to the teeth.  Weapon making supplies and electronics are plentiful.  

        The US could totally kick the living shit out of the US.

        • Cowicide says:

          The US could totally kick the living shit out of the US.

          But what if the US kicks the living shit out of the US instead?

        • the someone else we’ll be voting for is Hillary

          because there’s no way we’re electing one of these conspiracy-fanning treason monkeys from the Tea Party side of the aisle

          • Yeah, better to have the folks ACTUALLY INVOLVED in the conspiracies, because they are by definition better organized.

          • peregrinus says:

            Talking of conspiracies – anyone any views on the type of crime restricting or causing the restriction of these liberties would be?

            Treason?

          • lafave says:

            Pro-corporate Democrats like the Clintons and Obama are part of the problem.

        • FoolishOwl says:

          Think less about guns, and more about people. What kind of people become soldiers? Do soldiers benefit from the escalating concentration of wealth, the destruction of social safety nets, the constriction of civil liberties?

          In the years it would take to build a mass movement, maybe you should consider talking to some soldiers.

          • IronEdithKidd says:

            It’s apocryphal, but there are those who join the military in order to legally kill other people.  There’s a not-insignificant portion that join the military because they totally believe the jingoistic propaganda.  There are the people that join because that’s just what their family does.  And then there are the people that join because they’re desperate for any kind of employment.

            So which soldiers do you think we should be talking to?  The jingoists, the psychopaths, the careerists or the desperate?

          • FoolishOwl says:

            First, if you look at the histories of modern social revolutions, you find that winning the support of a significant proportion of rank-and-file members of the military is critical to the success of a social revolution.

            Second, I’ve not been in the military, but my father was, almost all my current co-workers were, and when I’ve done political work, I’ve met and worked with a fair number of veterans. Their politics vary. Most have conventional politics, but I’ve met a fair number of people in the radical left who were in the military. Overall, I think there may be a rightward skew, but it’s not nearly as strong a bias as some people assume. I’ve noticed that people who are ex-military and have very right-wing views are particularly given to boasting about having been in the military, while others tend to be quiet about it.

            The most dedicated anti-war activists I’ve met have been veterans.

        • IronEdithKidd says:

          I’ve known entirely too many veterans and engineers over the years to share your optimism.   

        • wysinwyg says:

           

          If tiny little Iraq can resist US occupation I am pretty damn sure that
          the VASTLY more heavily armed and numerous US citizenry living  in a
          much larger land area with far better cover can resist, um, US
          occupation.

          Iraq didn’t resist US occupation.  It was occupied within a few weeks of the start of the war and a(n admittedly shaky) puppet government was established within a few months.  Oh, by “resist” you mean some random dudes set up some bombs?  Sure, but it’s not as though they made any significant dent in the occupying force or came anywhere close to liberating any significant chunk of Iraq.  As far as being “tiny” that’s hardly what matters.  Iraq had AKs lying all around and I’d guess a much larger proportion of their population had actually fired a gun — certainly higher than in the most populous regions of the US. 

          The structure of the US army means that parts of it
          would inevitably rebel.  If part of the army is in rebellion, civilian
          fighters are not wearing uniforms, and the army is more leery of blowing
          up New York than it is about blowing up Baghdad, it isn’t even a
          contest.

          Doesn’t follow.  Part of the army rebelled in the civil war — the better soldiers and commanders did, in fact — and the army still won.  Not only that but at that time there was much greater parity between civilian and military firearms than there is now.  Also, there was no radio communication at the time so coordinating troops was more difficult as was real-time response to threats.  I’m not saying the outcome would be inevitable but it would be at the very least “a contest”.

          I think you also underestimate the level of authoritarianism in the US — I bet a large proportion of soldiers would be angry enough about “traitors,” “rebels,” and “terrorists” to remain loyal to the US government even when ordered by that entity to kill US citizens.  Again, this happened before in the US civil war.

          There’s a lot more reasons to think that 1) armed rebellion in the US is incredibly far-fetched in the first place and 2) any resistance would be laughably disorganized and not particularly effective but I don’t really feel about droning on about it.  Suffice to say you’re massively overstating the ease with which a largely unarmed and untrained civilian population could beat the best-prepared and best-armed military in the world.

          • Rindan says:

            Iraq didn’t resist US occupation.  It was occupied within a few weeks of the start of the war and a(n admittedly shaky) puppet government was established within a few months.  Oh, by “resist” you mean some random dudes set up some bombs?

            The US left.  It was happy to go.  It went from wanting to install a magical democratic utopia in the desert, to saying “fuck it” and leaving behind a hostile government allied with a local enemy.  If that isn’t defeat, I don’t know what is.

            As far as being “tiny” that’s hardly what matters.  Iraq had AKs lying all around and I’d guess a much larger proportion of their population had actually fired a gun — certainly higher than in the most populous regions of the US.

            You are just flat out wrong.  The US is the most heavily armed nation in the world.  Period.  We not only have the most, we have DOUBLE the #3 on the list, and that nation literally hands out guns to every single citizen.
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Number_of_guns_per_capita_by_country

            Further, not only does the US own more guns, it has more armed citizens as a percentage of the population than the next two nations combined at nearly 50% of the population.  Slap on top of this that the US is rich and can merrily fire boxes of ammo that are expensive elsewhere in the world, and you REALLY are underestimating how armed and dangerous the population has the potential to be.

            Doesn’t follow.  Part of the army rebelled in the civil war — the better soldiers and commanders did, in fact — and the army still won.  Not only that but at that time there was much greater parity between civilian and military firearms than there is now

            The civil war was a war between two nations with defined borders.  There were few people behind the lines.  You were on one side of the line or the other.  It wasn’t an occupation.  Armed citizens on your side of the line count for nothing when you are fighting a regular old stand up war.  A confederate unit of soldiers chilling out in Alabama had no need to worry that random citizens would be taking shots at them or blowing up their supplies.

            There’s a lot more reasons to think that 1) armed rebellion in the US is incredibly far-fetched in the first place and 2) any resistance would be laughably disorganized and not particularly effective but I don’t really feel about droning on about it.  Suffice to say you’re massively overstating the ease with which a largely unarmed and untrained civilian population could beat the best-prepared and best-armed military in the world.

            I think armed rebellion is also unlikely, but mostly because even a shitty democracy is easier to change with voting than getting people to commit to potentially dying.  If you can’t get 50%+1 to bother spending an hour voting, you probably are not going to get even 20% to go potentially die.

            As for resistance, I think you vastly overestimate the militaries ability to fight around civilians and infrastructure they don’t want to blow up.  Could the US nuke itself to death?  Sure.  Can the US  military hold out the vast US territory when 300 million heavily armed citizens are fighting a covert rebellion?  That is far more unlikely.  You just can’t defend everything.  Sure, a US citizen can’t blow up your tanks, but they don’t need to.  They just need to make driving down the street, sleeping outside of a heavily armed barrack, or in general not sitting inside armor or a fortified position suicidal.  

            There is a reason why we see lots of nations splitting up, but why nations successfully conquering and adding another nation to their territory has become increasingly rare.  It is just too damn easy to resist, and too fucking hard to rule a population that doesn’t want to be ruled.  The last nation to successfully conquer another nation and not get thrown out by resistance post-invasion was when Iraq invaded Kuwait, and a quick glance at the map will explain what an absurdly lopsided battle that was.

        • AnthonyC says:

          “As far as I know, 50%+1 is still enough to change the system”
          The senate seems to disagree

          • Rindan says:

            The senate does provide a little friction to the majority, but it isn’t absolute.  Further, it actually takes a lot less than 50%+1 to take over a majority in the US.  Only roughly half of all Americans vote, so a solid 40% of all Americans voting for you is more than enough.  25% of all Americans voting your way is enough to get most of what you want.  A paltry 20% of all Americans who can vote, voting for you scores you enough to at least gum up the works of the corporate machine.

            Getting 20% or more of all Americans to vote for someone who isn’t a douche bag seems a lot simpler than armed revolt.

      • FoolishOwl says:

        What I find impressive about Lessig is that he started out as a moderate conservative, and in general, he comes across as a moderate liberal. He’s on a first name basis with major politicians. And he still comes to the conclusion that the political machinery is so bad that we have to bypass it almost entirely in order to have a chance to reform it.

        Part of what’s brilliant about Lessig’s idea of calling for a national convention to amend the US Constitution is that it would necessarily involve large numbers of people across the US becoming involved in a genuinely democratic process, as local groups meet to hash out their proposals and choose delegates. One of the many challenges we face is that most people in the US have no personal experience with democratic processes. A nation-wide crash course in it might, in itself, help to shake things up.

        • “A nation-wide crash course in it might, in itself, help to shake things up.”

          Except the problem is they’d be getting their “lessons” in that crash-course from FoxNews and MSNBC. So nothing would really change.

          • FoolishOwl says:

            No, they’d get there lessons by actually being in a room with other people, arguing and making decisions.

          • Look around you. Do you SERIOUSLY think this lot are going to engage in the process? 

            They’re going to trust that “someone more qualified” is doing the heavy lifting, and tune in to their propaganda distribution network of choice for updates on what progress has been made in their name.

          • Cowicide says:

            @dballing:disqus 

            Look around you. Do you SERIOUSLY think this lot are going to engage in the process?

            Maybe you should surround yourself with better people and quit projecting your situation on others?

            It’s easy to be yet another naysayer, but some of us have a little more fortitude than that.  You’re welcome to come aboard if you ever get the guts to do so.

      • Cocomaan says:

        You’re not really being honest about what an insurgency would look like. Do you think that even 90% of US troops would fire on US civilians? I don’t. They didn’t in Egypt.

      • XionEternum says:

        What part of the afore mentioned outcome would suggest a physical civil war? Are people really so disconnected between the real world and internet to think a civil war in the US would largely be out on the streets?

        • Cowicide says:

          Are people really so disconnected between the real world and internet to think a civil war in the US would largely be out on the streets?

          Right, The Civil War ™ will be located within a sanctioned, limited free speech zone area at the center of a sports colosseum.  We’ll finally put all those old American Gladiators uniforms to good use.

    • “withouth at least probable cause”

      you do know that the Fox News journalist was named in a warrant, right?

      guess what the standard is to get a warrant issued.

  4. That_Anonymous_Coward says:

    They were so quick to judge WikiLeaks, condemn them as not being “REAL” journalists and not deserving of any of the protections they enjoyed.
    Hows that working out for you?

  5. Jake0748 says:

    I’m just looking for a place to sign up to fight this shit.  I don’t have any money, so I can’t donate.  What to do? Where to start?  Writing to my congressperson to repeal the patriot act just seems like pissing into the wind.  :(

    • cfuse says:

      Civil disobedience is what is required. Unfortunately, Americans seem allergic to it and only want simple and painless solutions.

      The powers that be aren’t going to change their ways unless forced to. At the moment there is no cost to them for their behaviour.

      • Vicq_Ruiz says:

        “aren’t going to change their ways unless forced to”

        Partially correct.  Where you are off target is when you say “change their ways”.

        Millions of people thought they were reforming the system by voting for a man who’s “ways” were portrayed as ethical and respectful of civil liberties, back in 2008.  We see how well that worked out, didn’t we?? (Those of us who mistrusted Obama before it was cool would be enjoying a little schadenfreude now, if we weren’t right there in the shit with the rubes who bought his bullshit).

        What we need, rather than politicians who tell us they are “changing their ways” after they’ve already fucked up innocent lives, is to restructure the system so that even if the voters pick the most corrupt, power-mad thug in a generation, that thug will simply not have the power to to fuck things up as much as the last few presidents have.

        • cfuse says:

          You aren’t going to get that outcome by voting for one of two equally unacceptable outcomes.

          • Vicq_Ruiz says:

             Absolutely correct, sir!

            I last voted for a Democrat or Republican for president when I voted for Clinton in 1996.  Third party (or fourth or fifth) ever since.

    • Cowicide says:

      I’m just looking for a place to sign up to fight this shit.

      You can donate your time.  In my opinion, this is the first step in making everything else possible down the road.

      http://www.rootstrikers.org/take_action

      Hit ‘em where it really hurts.

    • FoolishOwl says:

      One of the things we really, desperately need is a re-envisioned, revitalized labor movement. People have little agency in their jobs, and the rest of their lives are constrained by their efforts to keep their jobs. Labor unions have declined over time, and working conditions have changed in many ways since the glory days of industrial labor unions in the US in the 1930s. But if we could find new ways of organizing workers, we could shift the balance of power, both in the economic engines themselves, and by giving people more security so that they can intervene in their communities.

      One of the things we need to adapt to is the way production is spread out internationally, so we need to find ways to organize internationally. I’m frequently dismayed that even progressives will buy into nationalist ideas by complaining about outsourcing and calling for bringing jobs “back” to the US. I’m a text message away from workers in India, Europe, and China, with jobs closely related to mine. Surely the potential to organize internationally is there, and nationalism will never serve our interests.

      • for_SCIENCE says:

        I find it funny and sad that as we are in the middle of the age of ‘Unions are bad, m’kay?’ and Right-To-Work that I am starting to see grumblings among the skilled professional set about wishing they had some sort of collective bargaining, especially with the lastest round of H1B shenanigans going on. I’m sure someone else can recall the metaphor I’m trying to describe.

  6. Bill Darling says:

    Seems to me what’s happening to US reporters is actually what Wikileaks did to the  US and it’s allies: begged borrrowed and stole documentation that wasn’t theirs, just because they didn’t agree with it.

    • that in itself isn’t wrong. in a democracy about half of everyone disagrees with whoever’s in power at any time.  it is, however, very wrong when the information in that documentation is being kept secret so that it isn’t used to kill people we like.

      if they’re doing it to expose that crimes are being covered up by illegally classifying information (it’s against the law to mark something as secret merely to keep it from embarassing or incriminating you), then they’re actually heroes.  but, again, if it’s got stuff in it that’s rightly classified, and the thief doesn’t redact those before publishing, or doesn’t return the properly-secret portions to the government for safekeeping after excerpting the improperly-secreted portions, then their motive doesn’t mitigate their crime.

      for example, if manning had given Assange only the videos of the helicopter attack on the reporters, they’d both be heroes now. but instead he gave him literally everything his intel center had, and Assange dumped it all on the web for anyone anywhere to see, eventually without any sort of limitation.  completely and utterly stupid and illegal and wrong.

      if reporters are just poking around and releasing rightfully classified data to weaken public confidence in the government, or to weaken the government, and to feel or appear important, then their necks are too short and need adjusting using time-honored methods of cervical extension.

      • toyg says:

        if manning had given Assange only the videos of the helicopter attack on the reporters, they’d both be heroes now. 

        No, Manning would have faced the same backlash. The only “if” in his story is “if Manning hadn’t gone around bragging”, which was pure Dostoevskij-In-Action time.

        if reporters are just poking around and releasing rightfully classified data to weaken public confidence in the government

        Your definition of journalism overlaps with “right or wrong, my country”. I don’t think that’s what is taught in journalism school (although I might be wrong, these days).

        • The idiom is “my country, right or wrong”. And no, I don’t believe that at all. When my country is wrong I make sure my country makes it right. The only thing wrong with my country right now is that it’s festooned with liars who pretend to be patriotic but are doing their best to tear the government down. George Washington made a speech about false patriots following the Revolution. They’re just using better technology to coordinate their propaganda these days.

      • Bill Darling says:

        Wrong to you maybe. Right to me.   information is kept secret for good reason, and whether you like it or not, the citizenry wants some stuff, especially in wartime, to be secret

        You’ve declared him (and them) a hero. But he broke a vow and contract he swore to uphold. They (Wikileaks) are not even a American entitity and have no right to decide which information is available and which is not. Never mind that they aren’t transparent about their own organization.

        He’s not a hero for releasing that video. It’s classified information from a US attack helicopter. he has no “need to know” and it has the voices/identities of the pilots, various tactics, etc.  It’s not his (or Wikileaks) right to release because they happen to think it’s for the good. It wasn’t. It allowed people, who have no experience with the military, to distort the realities of combat without showing the larger context. Looks can be deceiving.

        • Christian Buchner says:

          If that tactics includes shooting up a van with children inside, just because the father happened to be a first responder in a medical emergency, that’s just plain wrong.

          • Bill Darling says:

            Actually, Christian, it’s far from “plain wrong”.  At best it’s murky.  According to other reports, that same vehicle was being used earlier in the day to ferry the enemy around the battlespace. Never mind that, according to the laws of war, it was not marked as a medical evacuation vehicle and thus was fair game to be targetted. On top of all of that, you can blame the father for bringing his kids to a firefight.

          • Lemoutan says:

            God forbid a vehicle be multipurpose.

        • “the citizenry wants some stuff, especially in wartime, to be secret”

          please don’t speak for me. I do not want some stuff kept secret. If what we’re doing can’t survive the Light Of Day, then we shouldn’t be doing it.

          “Some portion of the citizenry”? Sure.
          “The majority of the citizenry”? Maybe, but you’ll need to back that up with statistics.

          • Major Dee says:

            He wasn’t speaking for you. I think most would understand that he didn’t mean 100% of the citizenry. Yeah, probably the majority. But if you disagree, you’ll have to back that up with statistics. 

          • The ones taking private funds, converting them to public use, and then keeping secret the public use are the ones who bear the onus of proving there’s support for that secrecy.

          • Major Dee says:

             I agree, secrecy needs to be minimal, have a deadline, and necessary.

        • FoolishOwl says:

          The van was evacuating wounded people. The crew of the helicopter clearly described the people in the van as evacuating wounded, and asked for permission to fire on the van, in order to prevent them from evacuating the wounded.

          That’s a direct violation of the First Geneva Convention, and a serious war crime.

          • Major Dee says:

             Far from clear. The van was doing both
            evacuation and transportation throughout the day and was not labled in any conventional way as a
            carrier of the wounded. It is therefore a lawful target. The definition
            of wounded is not precise either. Given that Iraqi insurgents had
            routinely ignored various conventions in the past, including faking
            death and injury, is enough to justify firing on these individuals. No
            war crime

        • IronEdithKidd says:

          That video revealed a crime, not “realities of combat.”  

          • wysinwyg says:

             The realities of combat are criminal.  Neither of you have to be wrong.  (Neither of you have to be wrong factually.  I’m pretty sure Bill Darling is wrong morally.)

          • Major Dee says:

             To the brainwashed perhaps. But combat is far from clear cut and one certainly cannot rewind the video at leisure a few hours later after watching it in slow mo.  The cameraman appeared to be a target and so was the so-called ambulance.

        • wysinwyg says:

          They (Wikileaks) are not even a American entitity and have no right to decide which information is available and which is not.

          Yeah, only Americans are tough, wise, brave, and smart enough to determine which information should be available and which should not!  Fuck off, planet earth!

          /sarcasm

        • Gilbert Wham says:

          This citizen’s not so sure about your decision I want dodgy shit kept secret ‘because war’.

          • Major Dee says:

             I can tell you that this citizen does, dodgy and not so dodgy.  There’s no reason why John Q Public needs to know the whereabouts of a carrier group, the capabilities and weaknesses of a mine-resistant vehicle, or the name of a pilot who drops an errant bomb, which overrides the need for them not to know.

      • Ygret says:

         You are repeating garbage you read from the MSM.  Nothing was released unredacted, and Assange actually asked the US government for help redacting any sensitive info and the govt refused to help.  On top of that, the docs that Assange/Manning released were not top secret, they were classified, which is the lowest form of secrecy.  A lot of documents get classified for no reason in the USA, for the very reason that the information can be embarrassing to the government.  That is not a good reason for keeping things secret from the citizenry.  The US govt could point to no instance where the wikileaks docs were responsible for hurting anybody.  Not one single instance.  What they did do is show that our government is lying to us regularly on important subjects.

        Finally, the Pentagon Papers released by Daniel Ellsworth were Top Secret, the highest designation.  They were very sensitive documents and he didn’t go to jail because they showed how blatantly the US govt lied to us about the Vietnam war.  He was a national hero.  And yet Manning has been tortured and is being prosecuted for treason for doing much less than Ellsworth did, which is strong testimony to how screwed up and corrupt our government has become.  They treat the citizenry as the enemy, and now journalists and whistleblowers who do the very important work of letting the people know what’s going on in our name as criminals committing “espionage”.  Such draconian police state tactics have no place in an open democracy.

        You really need to learn history and stop getting wrong information from questionable sources and repeating it as the truth.

        • cleek says:

          They treat the citizenry as the enemy, and now journalists and
          whistleblowers who do the very important work of letting the people know
          what’s going on in our name as criminals committing “espionage”.

          so, Rosen’s “very important work” was telling the world that we have spies in North Korea ?

          • Ygret says:

             That’s not all he reported.  And duh, who doesn’t know we have spies in North Korea?  How exactly did publishing that vague information hurt our national security in any way?  I’m waiting…

          • cleek says:

             and i’m waiting for you to explain what his very important work was.

            it’s a stand-off!

          • Ygret says:

             Its not my job to second guess the value of a reporter’s work, nor did I claim his work was “very important”.   What I did say was that was “not all he reported.”  In other words, he didn’t run out to tell us a BIG SECRET and then run away to hide.  He was reporting on US government activity, for which act he is protected by the first amendment.  So how was national security harmed again?

        • 1. Assange was told how to proceed, and broke the law.
          2. You’re confusing “Confidential” for “classified.” Rookie bullshitter mistake. Confidential is the lowest level of “classified” data, but that doesn’t mean it’s innocuous or that anyone with a clearance who hands it out to non-cleared people shouldn’t be prosecuted. But that’s moot. Manning didn’t just steal Confidential information.
          3. Ellsworth? You mean Ellsberg. And he knew he was going to go to jail for releasing those papers, because jail was part of his plan. But when the Nixon administration broke the law by committing breakins trying to discredit Ellsberg’s character, the judge declared a mistrial and Ellsberg went free. His case never tested the facts of his infraction. But the fight between the NY Times and the government resulted in clear rules for the DoJ in investigating leakers and the reporters they contact. These are rules the NYT hasn’t challenged since. And they are the rules that Holder followed in getting records on AP and Fox News reporters.
          4. Manning wasn’t “tortured”. He was kept in solitary because he was a suicide risk. He also isn’t “the citizenry”, he is a soldier who was granted a security clearance and violated every rule he had agreed under oath to follow regarding that position of trust. Go look up the list of charges against him. Once you start stealing classified data, every crack of a knuckle is a new way to charge you for doing something wrong.
          5. “You really need to learn history and stop getting wrong information from questionable sources and repeating it as the truth.” Just about everything you wrote is demonstrably and often laughably wrong, and then you ended it with that blatant vomiting of projection. You are the very picture of deliberate, hypocritical ignorance. Sad. Just sad.

          • Ygret says:

             Solitary confinement, along with being woken every five minutes to “ensure his safety” for months on end is torture.  He was not a suicide risk, that was merely the justification for harassing and torturing him.  After his treatment was publicized and it embarrassed the government, they moved him to a proper facility await from the marines that had been holding him.

            And solitary confinement on its own is actually regarded as torture in the more civilized parts of the world. 

            And Ellsberg (Ellsworth, whatever) wasn’t jailed, whatever the reason, and his “crimes” were releasing much more highly classified documents than Manning did. 

            And prosecuting Manning or Ellsberg or whoever is one thing — they were government employees.  But trying to claim that journalists like Wikileaks can be prosecuted for publishing confidential (classified, whatever) documents is a crime breaks the model for investigative journalism.  In fact, the NY Times and many other newspapers published the same docs Wikileaks did.  Should they be jailed as well?  So please don’t try to obfuscate the reality of what is going on here. 

            And in the opinion of many Americans, including many of the founders of this nation, exposing government corruption, lies and waste is the duty of a patriot.  Whistleblowers are merely manifesting their duty to the citizenry (who the government governs in the name of, remember?) to inform us when our government has done bad things in our names.  Manning was fulfilling his patriotic duty:  he was not selling secrets to the enemy and to date the Pentagon and Feds have not detailed one instance where someone has been harmed due to the documents released by Manning.  Your authoritarian tendencies are showing.

          • Ygret says:

             ”Assange was told how to proceed, and broke the law.”  He was “told how to proceed”?  By who?  The Feds?  They have right to tell journalists how to proceed with publishing important information.  On top of that Assange tried to get the Feds to help him redact any potentially dangerous information and they refused.  So he went forward with the release after redacting information that appeared to be damaging.  He never dumped unredacted documents into the public domain.  That is a lie told in order to make him appear dangerous and criminal.  To date there has been no proof of any harm to anyone from the Wikileaks docs.  Did they inform us that our government has been lying to us on important topics?  Yes.  Did they embarrass the State Dept.?  Yes.  If those things are crimes we are in serious trouble as a free and open democratic republic.

      • BradBell says:

        but instead he gave him literally everything his intel center had, and Assange dumped it all on the web”

        That’s not true. In fact Manning did an enormous amount of professional work on the data that was released *specifically* because it has a low security grade, and then Wikileaks did a similar amount of journalistic work on it. For example, since Wikileaks used software to redact documents, the redacting was of a much higher calibre than considered normal. 

        I think our misinformation works like this: someone who doesn’t know or like a situation advises a politician with his own inferential spin on the facts, the politician spits out the only version he knows, and then the press parrot it as news. The “dumping secrets on the internet” notion refers to a fear, rather than a fact. It’s a “what if” notion. It hasn’t happened. Manning/Wikileaks are among our best whistleblowers and our best award-winning journalists.

  7. peregrinus says:

    Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must undergo the fatigue of supporting it

    Thomas Paine

    Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freedom of speech

    Benjamin Franklin

    It always seems amazing that people so long ago used to take this stuff seriously.

  8. RogerJH says:

    Well, no one in the press complained when Wikileaks got the short end of the stick. What goes around comes around.

  9. Major Dee says:

     I disagree.  It’s easy to judge weeks, months and years later. Those Iraqis  were  combatants and put noncombatants (children) in danger.

  10. Major Dee says:

     In the real world, information is kept secret.You can deny it or wish it away, but it’s true and necessary in some cases.  

    I did not see anyone above assert that only Americans have those characteristics so why bring it up?  If it’s American information and important to her welfare, some Australian with a collection of hackers is not entitled to it just because he believes, in his own “do as a say, not as I do” MO, that he is right.

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