Sign to FREE SPC B. MANNING NOW!
Free SPC B. Manning, Arrested for Exposing U.S. War Crimes in Iraq & Afghanistan
End the Occupations Now
Stop the Murder and Abuse of Civilians by U.S. and NATO Military
Sign the Petition Now:
A 22 year old U.S. soldier, B. Manning, has been arrested on suspicion of leaking classified combat video footage and secret documents to a whistle-blower website. SPC Manning, from Potomac, Maryland, is assigned to the 2nd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division and was stationed at Forward Operating Base Hammer, located east of Baghdad. SPC Manning was arrested in Iraq and is currently being held in Kuwait pending further investigations. The WikiLeaks website posted a video which shows U.S. occupation forces shooting civilians on a Baghdad street during 2007.
The video, which was filmed by the U.S. military, shows a horrendous massacre of unarmed civilians on the ground by a helicopter gunship, accompanied by crude and insensitive remarks by the crew and ground troops associated with the assault. A Reuters reporter and two children were also wounded in the assault. The Pentagon has not questioned the validity or authenticity of the video.
Two U.S. soldiers who were part of the ground unit which took part in the attack, Josh Stieber and Ethan McCord, have written and published a letter of apology to the Iraqi people for their actions.
But those who are really responsible for this war crime, the U.S. military, far from apologizing have chosen to track down and arrest the person whom they believe released the video, B. Manning.
If B. Manning did courageously leak the video, he is to be commended for exposing a war crime, not punished. According to international law, and even the U.S. Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), combatants are required to report violations of rules of combat outlined in the Geneva Conventions first laid down in 1950. And those rules of combat explicitly list the intentional shooting of unarmed civilians as a war crime.
At the Nuremberg trials in 1946, Nazi war criminals were tried and punished, not only for their own despicable acts, but for remaining silent while others committed atrocities. The operable phrase was "silence equals consent".
Many of the mainstream press and other apologists for U.S. and NATO wars and occupations have attacked B. Manning as a threat to national security because the video was classified. It has long been known that the U.S. government routinely classifies not only information directly associated with weapons and tactics, but anything that might make them look bad, or call into question their attempts to justify unjust wars and occupations.
There have also been reports that other classified documents and videos may have been released by Manning. The existence of such material shows that this case goes beyond a single war crime incident. It points to a broad program of criminal planning and conspiracy to commit or to cover up war crimes by the U.S. Military.
Progressive and peace-loving people everywhere must rally to defend B. Manning, and condemn the war crimes which he is accused of revealing.
Sign the Petition Now: http://www.iacenter.org/iraq/freebradleymanning
To: President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, U.S. Army Judge Advocate General Dana K. Chipman, Congressional leaders, U.N. Secretary General Ban, members of the U.N. Security Council, U.N. member states
cc: Major media representatives, International Red Cross
Free B. Manning!!
End the Wars and Occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan!
Bring the Troops Home Now!
Bring to Justice the U.S. Perpetrators of War Crimes, including the Pentagon
I am writing to demand that B. Manning, a courageous soldier deployed in Iraq, be immediately be released from custody, and that any and all charges against him be immediately dropped and that any administrative or military sanctions against him be suspended.
B. Manning is suspected of being responsible for the leak of a classified video filmed by the U.S. military, which shows in graphic detail the massacre of civilians by a U.S. helicopter gunship in Iraq in 2007.
Far from being punished, B. Manning should be commended. In fact, the Geneva Conventions of 1950, the Nuremberg war crimes trials of 1946, and even the U.S. Uniform Code of Military Justice, not only permit, but require that violations of international law and the rules of engagement be reported. Silence equals consent!
U.S. and NATO troops who are sent to fight and occupy other countries are placed in an impossible situation. They are forced to fight and die in unjustified wars and inevitably many come to regard the entire population as their enemy.
I therefore further demand that the United States stop its aggressive wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and bring the troops home immediately.
I also demand that a commission independent of the U.S. government or its allies be established to thoroughly and publicly investigate the events portrayed by the video allegedly leaked by B. Manning.