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698 comments

Feh (5, Insightful)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482494)

I can understand this dude getting in trouble for leaking information and such, but kudos to him for getting the collateral murder video out there in the wild.

Re:Feh (5, Insightful)

causality (777677) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482524)

I can understand this dude getting in trouble for leaking information and such, but kudos to him for getting the collateral murder video out there in the wild.

If there were any doubts as to the authenticity of these documents and videos, their veracity has now been affirmed.

Re:Feh (5, Interesting)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482652)

There was never any doubt about the authenticity of the videos - the military admitted they were real. What they argued was that the videos didn't show the context in which there had been combat nearby.

Now, how nearby combat affects whether you can shoot at people retrieving the wounded without violating the Geneva Conventions is a different question. What is very clear, though, is that this is a small taste of what the Iraq War really looks like, and that some soldiers under the sort of combat pressure end up thinking along the lines of "Anyone who runs is an insurgent. Anyone who doesn't run is a well-disciplined insurgent."

Re:Feh (3, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482674)

Yeah, except that same helicopter (same day, before the 17min Collateral Murder vid) crew DIDN'T fire when children and other noncombatants were present, and a second time when they also couldn't get a positive ID on insurgents. YEah, those damn baby-rapists.... http://gawker.com/5513068/the-full-version-of-the-wikileaks-video-is-missing-30-minutes-of-footage [gawker.com]

Re:Feh (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482708)

Your Commie has no regard for human life, not even of his own. For this reason men, I want to impress upon you the need for extreme watchfulness. The enemy may come individually, or in strength. He may even appear in the form of our own troops. But however we must stop him. We must not allow him to gain entrance to this base. Now, I'm going to give you THREE SIMPLE rules: First, trust NO one, whatever his uniform or rank, unless he is known to you personally; Second, anyone or anything that approaches within 200 yards of the perimeter is to be FIRED UPON; Third, if in doubt, shoot first then ask questions later. I would sooner accept a few casualties through accidents rather losing the entire base and its personnel through carelessness. Any variation of these rules must come from me personally. Any variation on these rules must come from me personally. Now, men, in conclusion, I would like to say that, in the two years it has been my privilege to be your commanding officer, I have always expected the best from you, and you have never given me anything less than that. Today, the nation is counting on us. We're not going to let them down. Good luck to you all.

Re:Feh (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482760)

On my way to the market where I setup a sniper gun and shot 12 random people including 3 children. I shot them 5 or 6 times each I wanted to make sure they died.

You have to understand though I rode a subway packed with people on the way and I didn't kill any of them. I even bought icecream for a random girl just outside the market. I'm such a nice guy. People just don't understand how nice I am.

Anyhow luckly after a trial kidgenius was on the jury and sent me home free as a result of my testimony of buying icecream for a girl and not killing a subway full of people.

Glad that's all over WEW.

Re:Feh (4, Insightful)

grumbel (592662) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482818)

Yeah, except that same helicopter (same day, before the 17min Collateral Murder vid) crew DIDN'T fire when children and other noncombatants were present

And that makes firing on a van full of civilians ok exactly how?

Re:Feh (2, Insightful)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482830)

So, pilots have not shot everybody in sight. They should get a medal! And while you're at it, let's also give this award to Osama bin-Laden, because he haven't killed anyone since the 9/11.

In fact, I should get one too because I'm not shooting anyone.

Re:Feh (5, Insightful)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482834)

Yeah, except that same helicopter (same day, before the 17min Collateral Murder vid) crew DIDN'T fire when children and other noncombatants were present, and a second time when they also couldn't get a positive ID on insurgents.

And yet no video has ever been released to back up the soldier's claims, despite the fact that this would *clearly* soften the blow for the military.

So, just so I have this straight: I'm supposed to believe the statements of these soldiers, who've already proven to have bad judgment, and to trust that the military, a military that's proven time an again to be very happy to whitewash incidents if it's in their interests, has the video to back up these claims, but has just decided to hold on to it for no good reason?

Uhuh. Yeah, that makes a lot of sense...

Re:Feh (0, Troll)

_KiTA_ (241027) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482868)

There was never any doubt about the authenticity of the videos - the military admitted they were real. What they argued was that the videos didn't show the context in which there had been combat nearby.

Now, how nearby combat affects whether you can shoot at people retrieving the wounded without violating the Geneva Conventions is a different question. What is very clear, though, is that this is a small taste of what the Iraq War really looks like, and that some soldiers under the sort of combat pressure end up thinking along the lines of "Anyone who runs is an insurgent. Anyone who doesn't run is a well-disciplined insurgent."

Don't you remember? Lord High Glorious Leader King Bush the 2nd decreed that the Geneva Conventions do not apply to "t'err'sts", and by definition, anyone we're at war with is a "t'err'st". Therefore, there were no violations of the human rights given in the Geneva Conventions, as our targets aren't humans.

Even though they later turned out to not be t'err'sts, upon firing upon them they became t'err'sts, at least temporarily, and that makes everything A-OK!

No, I don't believe this for a second either. In sane, rational times we could put the "Saddam" check on it -- "If Saddam Hussein tried to say this, would we use it as evidence against his administration to help justify an embargo / invasion?" Well, yes, we probably would.

But we do not live in sane, rational times -- in sane, rational times, George Bush Jr and a host of treasonous war criminals in his administration would be in the Hague right now undergoing war crimes trials. Instead, we have to be "bipartisan", which is bubblespeek for "let the Republicans do what they want".

Re:Feh (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482554)

I loved how nobody bothered to point out that there were rocket launchers and AK-47's in the collateral murder video. Anti war people are so gullible.

Re:Feh (1, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482572)

No to mention that the collateral murder video was an edit, of a much longer video. And the much longer video was an edit (done by this guy) that showed some very UNdamning things that the pilots did, like NOT firing when children/innocents were in the line of fire.

Re:Feh (0)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482600)

There was two versions of the collateral murder video. If you didn't bother to watch the longer version, it's not their fault.

And they did fire children and innocents who stopped helping wounded people on the street. Are you such a person who would just drive past wounded and bleeding people laying on the street instead of helping them?

Re:Feh (4, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482634)

There are actually THREE versions. There are the Collateral Murder version. The "unedited" Wikileaks version which is what Manning sent. And the TRUE unedited version that Manning edited before sending to Wikileaks. http://gawker.com/5513068/the-full-version-of-the-wikileaks-video-is-missing-30-minutes-of-footage [gawker.com]

Re:Feh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482696)

At 31:08, the video fades to black and according to the time-stamp on the footage resumes about 30 minutes later to show an additional missile attack.

It does not justify the first attack and that is what we are talking about.

Re:Feh (2, Insightful)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482854)

So, should we give a get-of-the-jail-free card to anyone who don't shoot children?

WTF is wrong with you, people? Since when following Geneva conventions is considered anything but normal?

Re:Feh (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482886)

that showed some very UNdamning things that the pilots did, like NOT firing when children/innocents were in the line of fire.

If I don't stab you on Monday, and I don't stab you on Tuesday, then I stab you on Wednesday, what does it matter what I did on Monday and Tuesday? I still fucking stabbed you. And these soldiers still fucking shot at people trying to remove a wounded journalist from the field. Frankly I think you would have to be some kind of idiot to believe they weren't ordered to do so. Didn't shoot kids, didn't shoot kids, shot journalist. Oh, but I didn't shoot the kids, so it's OK.

Re:Feh (1)

unbug (1188963) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482926)

Do they have a rule that for every kid you don't fire at you get to kill two grown-up guys or something? Three if it was a baby?

Re:Feh (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482636)

People who want nothing more than war to help fill the gap in their pants are more gullible, i.e. - George Bush(s). Get a sock.

Re:Feh (5, Interesting)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482646)

I loved how nobody bothered to point out that there were rocket launchers and AK-47's in the collateral murder video.

Did you bother to point out that there were children in a van that was being loaded with a wounded journalist that got blasted to hell?

Anti war people are so gullible.

And pro-war people aren't? "Iraq has WMDs! Oops, we mean they don't." "If we go to Afghanistan, we can capture and/or kill bin Laden! Oops, I mean we can't."

Come on. Seriously? You're acusing anti-war folks of being gullible?

Re:Feh (5, Insightful)

goldspider (445116) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482810)

"And pro-war people aren't? "Iraq has WMDs! Oops, we mean they don't." "If we go to Afghanistan, we can capture and/or kill bin Laden! Oops, I mean we can't."

Come on. Seriously? You're acusing anti-war folks of being gullible?"

Both "sides" can be vulnerable to agenda-driven manipulation and can engage in willful ignorance of important context.

Re:Feh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482872)

GP is either being tastelessly 'funny', or just plain trolling. 'Informative' mod is ill-placed either way... (wtf mods?)

Re:Feh (1)

kenh (9056) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482900)

Anti war people are so gullible.

And pro-war people aren't? "Iraq has WMDs! Oops, we mean they don't." "If we go to Afghanistan, we can capture and/or kill bin Laden! Oops, I mean we can't."

Come on. Seriously? You're acusing anti-war folks of being gullible?

Both sides are gulible.

Anti-war folks like to blame the administration for not knowing facts that came to light months or years after the decision to go to war was made.

Pro-war folks didn't challenge assumptions enough at the time.

Re:Feh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482806)

Are you saying you're pro-war? That in general you advocate wars, as opposed to peace? Also, let us ask how gullible the "pro-war" people were in regards to the claims of WMD in Iraq (as merely the first in a series of rationales for the invasion).

The most general question that must be posed is why are the US forces there at all; secondarily in this specific case why did the helicopter need to be where it was--as soon as your rocket launchers and AK-47s appeared, why not simply fly out of harm's way?

This doesn't seems a particularly good way of "spreading democracy" (another of those rationales for the invasion... many pro-war people bought that one).

Re:Feh (5, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482558)

Yeah, kudos for doing a self-edit on the video before releasing it to Wikileaks (who did another self edit) that could put the military into a worse light than they would've been with the missing footage in there. In the missing footage, we know that the helicopter pilots DID NOT fire TWICE when there were civilians/children in harms way. Seeing that might change the thoughts slightly on the pieces of video that were seen...

Re:Feh (5, Funny)

moonbender (547943) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482592)

I'm sure the military will start releasing unedited footage so that everybody can get a fair and balanced picture.

Of course they will (1)

Benfea (1365845) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482778)

I mean, this is a democracy with a transparent government, not North Korea, right? *sigh*

Re:Feh (1)

lysdexia (897) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482598)

Link please? To full source of unedited video?

Re:Feh (5, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482618)

It doesn't exist. Manning edited it before sending to Wikileaks. Wikileaks further edited it. Here are the details http://gawker.com/5513068/the-full-version-of-the-wikileaks-video-is-missing-30-minutes-of-footage [gawker.com]

Re:Feh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482664)

Then you don't actually know what happened in the "missing time" and you are talking out of your ass.

Re:Feh (5, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482692)

Umm...yes, we do have an idea what has happened. Read the Gawker article that I linked, or the actual SWORN Statements from the soldiers themselves. http://www2.centcom.mil/sites/foia/rr/CENTCOM%20Regulation%20CCR%2025210/Death%20of%20Reuters%20Journalists/2--Sworn%20Statements%20.pdf [centcom.mil]

Re:Feh (3, Insightful)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482738)

Right...because soldiers would really implicate themselves in something like this.

Like I said before, it doesn't matter if they did it twice or not...what matters is they did it once.

Re:Feh (4, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482756)

Uh, if they were lying, then the video would show the that. They have the cockipt voices and video from the chopper showing what happened. They made a statement. If there was a contradiction, the JAGs office would have a field day with them....

Re:Feh (2, Informative)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482780)

Uh, if they were lying, then the video would show the that. They have the cockipt voices and video from the chopper showing what happened. They made a statement. If there was a contradiction, the JAGs office would have a field day with them....

You said the unedited video doesn't exist. If that's true, then all we have to go on is what the pilots said, pilots which would never implicate themselves (and the military likely wouldn't either, as it would add validity to the fact that what they did was wrong.)

If it DOES exist, and if it clears the military from looking as bad, then why doesn't the army release it?

Re:Feh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482828)

No numbnuts. The video DOES exist. WE just haven't seen it. He's stating it doesn't exist for you and me to view. Why doesn't the military release ALL of the videos that it has? There's probably tons of stuff out there that makes them not look bad. The Army is not in the business of "trying to not look bad". They are in the business of fighting a war.

Re:Feh (4, Insightful)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482890)

Why doesn't the military release ALL of the videos that it has? There's probably tons of stuff out there that makes them not look bad. The Army is not in the business of "trying to not look bad".

LOLFR! Wow, you win a gold star for dumbest comment of the day. "The Army is not in the business of 'trying to not look bad'"... are you fucking *kidding* me? The military practically *invented* propaganda, both at home and in theatre. Christ, have you never studied the world wars? Vietnam? Korea? The military spends an *enormous* amount of time trying to gain and maintain domestic support for its activities abroad.

Seriously, I don't know if you're a troll, naive, or just incredibly stupid...

Re:Feh (3, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482826)

Should we toss out every murder conviction based on video evidence because we don't have footage of the murderer for the 25 years he lived before he committed the murder? How much "context" do you need when you see soldiers intentionally targeting civilians?

Re:Feh (1, Informative)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482682)

we know that the helicopter pilots DID NOT fire TWICE when there were civilians/children in harms way. Seeing that might change the thoughts slightly on the pieces of video that were seen...

Oh, ok. Wow, that totally changes things. I mean, now that we know they only did it ONCE, there is no problem. ::eyeroll::

Look. I understand that it's war and shit happens. Regardless, they still shot up a van that had kids in it with a wounded journalist being loaded on board. Once, twice, a hundred times...it doesn't matter. They still did it.

It does, actually (0, Troll)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482940)

If you demand perfection from troops, as in they never make a mistake, never harm an innocent, never cause collateral damage, well you are an idiot. That has never been the case in any conflict with any country. War is messy business. That is one of the many reasons why it should be a last resort. That is also why the rules of engagement and laws are different in the case of war. The question is not if civilians will die, they will. It is to try and minimize it, and to ensure that soldier aren't killing civilians for fun or the like.

So, if the helicopter crew made a legit mistake, well then it is just that: A tragic mistake, one of very many that happen in a war. If they were instead trying to kill civilians, that is entirely different.

Also in a conflict like Iraq in particular, it is extremely difficult. The Geneva Conventions exist not only to protect combatants, but in particular to protect non-combatants. You'll notice that they specify things like that soldier must wear a clear uniform, hospitals are not to be used as bases of operation and so on and so forth. Those rules are to protect civilians. Well the combatants in Iraq don't obey those rules. In fact they go out of their way to try and blend in as civilians, they do things like use ambulances for strikes.

That makes target identification much, much harder. It will lead to more mistakes, more civilian casualties.

Now while you can argue that this (and many other good reasons) means we should stop waging a war in Iraq, you should not vilify soldiers who make mistakes. Demanding perfect from them is no more realistic than demanding perfection anywhere else. You are not perfect, I am not perfect, they are not perfect.

Part of a consideration of war has to be the collateral damage, the lives lost that are not military. You can't say "They need to avoid that," because it isn't possible. They should attempt to minimize it, but it cannot be avoided entirely.

Re:Feh (3, Insightful)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482794)

Yeah.. murderers shouldn't ever be punished.. just think of all the moments of their life that they spent not murdering anyone! It's got to be at least 99.9999%. That's good enough for me!

Re:Feh (3, Funny)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482924)

In the missing footage, we know that the helicopter pilots DID NOT fire TWICE when there were civilians/children in harms way.

Not exactly Matlock's moment of glory here. You honestly think OJ's best defense strategy would have been to find two women to testify that he had not (yet) chopped them up? Seriously, dude?

Understand? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482576)

I can understand this dude getting in trouble for leaking information

So despite the fact that he's a genuine hero, both in a moral and practical sense, and did the entire world a service with his actions, you still feel a need to pay lip service to authority and the rules they designed to oppress exactly this kind of information from reaching the public?

Re:Understand? (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482712)

So despite the fact that he's a genuine hero, both in a moral and practical sense, and did the entire world a service with his actions, you still feel a need to pay lip service to authority and the rules they designed to oppress exactly this kind of information from reaching the public?

I never said I agreed with it, I said I can understand why it happend. Understanding something and agreeing with something are two different concepts.

Re:Feh (4, Interesting)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482608)

What a dumbass.

There are ways, such as Congressional investigations, to out that sort of stuff. Plastering it on the web works but isn't exactly brilliant.

Example:
Find Congresscritter(s) with adequate security clearance and appropriate record of stirring shit. Give them a detailed verbal brief including the docs and their location. Have THEIR legal eagles work out a procedure for accessing the material.

Re:Feh (5, Insightful)

sammyF70 (1154563) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482728)

Which is probably why Reuters, which asked for it under the Freedom of Information Act, couldn't get this video until it was leaked. They just lacked the connection to a congresscritter.

Re:Feh (4, Informative)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482730)

There are ways, such as Congressional investigations, to out that sort of stuff.

Sadly, I don't think there are that many people of the same calibre as Morris Udall (he was the congressman who took up an accusation of US soldiers massacring civilians in Vietnam - twenty nine other recipients of the same accusation ignored it).

Re:Feh (1)

StuartHankins (1020819) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482858)

If you're the one waiting for someone else to take action for you, then you're a coward.

If you're trusting a congressperson to do this work for you, you're the dumbass.

Re:Feh (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482770)

Guys like this should get the Medal of Honor. Instead, they're way more likely to get long prison sentences.

YOU COMMIE SPY! (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482508)

Do you realize that in addition to fluoridating water, why, there are studies underway to fluoridate salt, flour, fruit juices, soup, sugar, milk, ice cream? Ice cream, Mandrake? Children's ice cream!...You know when fluoridation began?...1946. 1946, Mandrake. How does that coincide with your post-war Commie conspiracy, huh? It's incredibly obvious, isn't it? A foreign substance is introduced into our precious bodily fluids without the knowledge of the individual, and certainly without any choice. That's the way your hard-core Commie works. I first became aware of it, Mandrake, during the physical act of love...Yes, a profound sense of fatigue, a feeling of emptiness followed. Luckily I was able to interpret these feelings correctly. Loss of essence. I can assure you it has not recurred, Mandrake. Women...women sense my power, and they seek the life essence. I do not avoid women, Mandrake...but I do deny them my essence.

Re:YOU COMMIE SPY! (4, Funny)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482528)

Well, I've been to one world fair, a picnic, and a rodeo, and that's the stupidest thing I ever heard come over a set of earphones. You sure you got today's codes?

Re:YOU COMMIE SPY! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482642)

Yes sir, it is.

This guy deserves a medal (3, Insightful)

eagee (1308589) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482532)

Honestly. For standing up for what is right instead of doing what he's told. If there isn't a medal for that, there fucking should be.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (0, Troll)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482538)

Yeah, give him a medal for potentially putting US citizens lives in danger. Of course!

Re:This guy deserves a medal (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482564)

He's putting US Citizen's lives in danger by exposing a cover up by the US Military? Now there's some Dubya bush logic!

Re:This guy deserves a medal (4, Insightful)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482596)

Umm...he released over 250,000 communications memos. Inside those memos there could be a ton of sensitive information outlining troop movements, names of spies, etc. Not to mention that if the foreign governments, agencies or yes, terrorists, have the encrypted versions of these memos, and now have the unencrypted versions, they could find a way to crack our encryption algorithms.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (0, Troll)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482698)

Not to mention that if the foreign governments, agencies or yes, terrorists, have the encrypted versions of these memos, and now have the unencrypted versions, they could find a way to crack our encryption algorithms.

You clearly don't know how modern day encryption works. It would be insane to try to crack the encryption based on encrypted/unencrypted versions instead of cracking algorithm.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482838)

Not to mention that if the foreign governments, agencies or yes, terrorists, have the encrypted versions of these memos, and now have the unencrypted versions, they could find a way to crack our encryption algorithms.

You clearly don't know how modern day encryption works. It would be insane to try to crack the encryption based on encrypted/unencrypted versions instead of cracking algorithm.

And you don't understand intelligence or encryption. They're not trying to crack AES, but if they can determine that there are bugs or mistakes in how our stuff is encrypted, they can go after that. It's much more about learning our techniques and procedures than simply a math problem.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482718)

Oh right, you should have just said that you were making an assumption about something when you have no possession of facts. That would have made it a lot easier for me to ignore your comment.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (3, Informative)

Demonantis (1340557) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482860)

AES is an extremely well documented algorithm. Nothing short of stealing the implementation will give them useful information. Accusing the guy of risking sensitive information is a slippery slope when you have no evidence of it happening and that the information is antique now. I would want to question why he felt the need to leak that information. Especially when reuters was demanding it already. Government and Military oversight are two things that a country can't get enough of and cases like this justify it more.

Why Was He Discussing Operations? (5, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482776)

He's putting US Citizen's lives in danger by exposing a cover up by the US Military? Now there's some Dubya bush logic!

From a BBC article with more details from the person who turned him in [bbc.co.uk]:

I gave them conversation logs that implicated Special Agent Manning. They were particularly interested in a code word for a major operation.

So you know, in addition to the videos and diplomatic cables he was out and about bragging about this and discussing major operations and their code words. While you might be able to justify the videos, I don't know how you could justify bragging to people about it and discussing current military operations on the internet. That could probably be construed as putting the lives of many soldiers in danger.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482594)

If US citizens were ever put in danger as a result of this, I think we have the Apache aircrews to extend our thanks to.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (4, Informative)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482648)

Even if the video never got out, he still released 250,000 other communications memos that have potentially sensitive information in them.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482574)

The only ones getting medals will be those murdering soldier fucks.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482614)

Indeed he does. And the people that threw him into prison should be sent to prison instead.
What's happening here is outrageous. Prosecuting someone for exposing criminals undermines everything our justice system should stand for. It clearly shows how through and through corrupted the military is.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (1)

Midnight's Shadow (1517137) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482742)

Indeed he does. And the people that threw him into prison should be sent to prison instead. What's happening here is outrageous. Prosecuting someone for exposing criminals undermines everything our justice system should stand for. It clearly shows how through and through corrupted the military is.

Maybe. Maybe not. The guy did a good thing by leaking videos and exposing criminal actions but if he had to break the law while doing this then legally he should be in jail as well. Mitigating circumstances should effect the punishment but not the fact that he did commit a crime and should pay for that crime. It has nothing to do with corruption in the military.

That is true. (1)

Benfea (1365845) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482798)

I have a hard time believing that there isn't some kind of law against this kind of thing given the sensitivity of intelligence information, but I still concur with the person you were responding to: why is this kind of information being suppressed at all by a (small d) democratic government?

Re:This guy deserves a medal (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482866)

I disagree. He should be trialed, but the exposing those actions should justify the crime he committed, and he shouldn't be convicted.

I Think He Lost This Gamble (1, Interesting)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482714)

Honestly. For standing up for what is right instead of doing what he's told. If there isn't a medal for that, there fucking should be.

He gambled with his access to this data and, in hindsight, I think it was a very imprudent thing to do that might result in espionage or treason charges. The documents he released would have to have had such a profound impact on the American people, the American press and the rest of the world that his imprisonment could only be seen as an Imperial action committed by a war hungry country. This, however, would require that politicians become involved and pardon him from any persecution instead of a military level court decision. And for that, I think we would have to be talking about more than a few accidental killings in a war zone. We would have to be talking about an unacknowledged war crime [wikipedia.org]. The Garani video listed in the article might be a war crime but it sounds like the United States has admitted to it in the press, thereby removing the blunt effect it might have or the super valuable phrase "cover up".

Unfortunately for Manning, none of this went down to the degree he needed it to. I don't mean to sound apologetic or like lives are trivial things to be dispatched with at the push of a button but the American people seem to be okay with the fact that hell is visited upon two other nations by way of their tax dollar. If they want to, they can watch journalists being killed in Iraq. It's been available for several months with little impact. The justifications of these wars range from 9/11 to 'they got our oil' but it seems that anything Manning leaked has failed to leave the impact it needed to in order to ensure his freedom. That's my opinion from watching the media circus so far anyway--his only hope seems to be that the Garani video has much more of an impact. The 260,000 diplomatic cables are not going to have the impact he'll need them to. I can understand selected videos of unacknowledged journalist killings but why the cables? I don't think the politicians will appreciate that at all and it will do nothing for his case.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (4, Insightful)

kenh (9056) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482832)

Honestly, do you think the government he worked for, swore an oath to defend and protect, and that trusted him to properly handle secret documents should give him an award for violating that trust/oath?

You can't on one hand call "leakers" brave heroes for risking severe consequences and then act suprised when their actions have those very same consequences.

History may prove him right or not, but right now his offense is punishable, and he knew it when he did it.

Re:This guy deserves a medal (1)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482892)

Right or wrong he got caught because he couldn't keep his damn mouth shut. You'd think that people who are planning to break the law would notice that this one particular failure brings down more criminals than any other factor.

Whistleblower imprisoned by liars and murderers (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482540)

That's the real headline.

Re:Whistleblower imprisoned by liars and murderers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482752)

Oh what ever.
Go back to hell and smoke your pot, hippy.

Lifetime in jail vs keeping quiet, though choice (2, Insightful)

Kaleidoscopio (1271290) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482544)

I know I would choose to keep quiet, but I'm a coward (even if not anonymous).
It must have taken a lot of courage to leak all that info.
Kudos for him, I wish I had that kind of self sacrificing will.

Re:Lifetime in jail vs keeping quiet, though choic (3, Insightful)

Higaran (835598) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482724)

See, I disagree, if he was a civilian and somehow got ahold of those videos then he could do what ever he wanted with them, and it would be fine by me, but he was part of the militay, and when you join you take a oath to protect the people of the US, and that includes the others serveing with you. This stuff is confidential for a reason, good or bad it need to stay that way for a while, this is no diffrent that getting the plans to say build weapons and post them on the internet. Yes I know that some one could take those plans and make the wepons and hurt our guys out there, but what do you think our enemies think when they see videos like this. It defenitly isn't feer, it anger and thyat will make them more hostile to our guys out in the field. I'm not one for censorship of free speech but this is in NO way free speech. I think this guy should spend YEARS in jail, and no I don't think that is too harsh. In 10 years when this stuff would be declassified and if it went public then, that would have been fine, because everything would have died down, and hopefully we wouldn't still be at war, but not when our guys are still out there every day, risking their lives.

Re:Lifetime in jail vs keeping quiet, though choic (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482804)

War-crimes are okay if you commit them for your country. Or if an old, fat man with lots of shiny things tells you it's okay. I'm reminded of a psychological experiment involving shocking test-takers.

Re:Lifetime in jail vs keeping quiet, though choic (3, Insightful)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482932)

This stuff is confidential for a reason, good or bad it need to stay that way for a while, this is no diffrent that getting the plans to say build weapons and post them on the internet.

Bullshit.

First, there was a story on /. not long ago how *everything* is confidential now - and it's a major problem. Secondly, there are no "safety reasons" why this should be confidential - at most, it was to protect them from their own incompetence.

and when you join you take a oath to protect the people of the US

Exactly - the people of the US, not only the military. In this case, the people of the US have the right to be protected from their own army (yes, I know they weren't shooting US civilians, but to me an innocent's life is worth the same, no matter when they're from).

Re:Lifetime in jail vs keeping quiet, though choic (5, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482946)

when you join you take a oath to protect the people of the US, and that includes the others serveing with you.

No, you take an oath to defend the Constitution. *BIG* difference.

*applause* (1, Insightful)

PandyBear (1586677) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482562)

This lad deserves a medal just for outting the Collateral Murder video alone. Let alone all the other "hundreds of thousands" of classified records (which im very skeptical of. I fail to see how one man can just handover this much info on his own)

Re:*applause* (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482644)

He claims he walked in with Lady Gaga CD-RWs and walked out with CD-RWs with a split archive file. No mention of encryption, archive level or otherwise. That, plus severely lacking security measures, according to him.

I think I would've made the same decision (1)

Omnifarious (11933) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482676)

I can see leaking select diplomatic cables, but leaking all of them seems horribly irresponsible.

I'm really sad though, because that guy could've been a great source. Our country, and most countries around the world have gotten away with hiding any number of things from the public that they shouldn't be. It would be really nice for those things to be made public.

Governments (ours most definitely included) do horrible ugly things, and I really want more people to be forced to confront that in a way they can't deny.

Context edited for effect? (1, Troll)

goldspider (445116) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482694)

Apparently there are several versions of this video, at least one having been edited by this guy. I also understand that the edits removed a lot of what could be considered vital context.

"Lamo" (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482722)

Lamo's last name is a stunningly accurate characterization of his actions in this case. Might I amend it to say "piece of shit?"

The flip side (1, Insightful)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482734)

A lot of the material he leaked was Top Secret. To be classified as Top Secret, the release of that information must cause imminent, serious harm to the United States and/or its allies and assets. Would he have the stones to take personal responsibility when the insurgents find US and Iraqi Government collaborators through that data and start murdering them and their families?

Of course not. Guys like this virtually never want to be judged by the entire scope of the consequences of their actions. He'll feel smug that he exposed data like that helicopter footage, but when some collaborator's children are raped and murdered because of him, he'll deny that he's culpable for that.

A lot of that material SHOULDN'T'VE been secret (4, Insightful)

Benfea (1365845) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482820)

The military all too often makes things secret not because it is sensitive, but because it would generate bad PR. This is not how a democratic government is supposed to function. If you don't like living in a country with a transparent government, you can always move to places like North Korea.

Re:A lot of that material SHOULDN'T'VE been secret (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482894)

Ok, you go ahead and go live in a country, somewhere on this planet, that doesn't try to always generate good PR for itself. I'll be waiting here, minding my own damn business, until you search fruitlessly for some Utopia. War isn't pretty. I hope that humans will learn to stop killing one another, but that isn't likely going to happen. Accidents happen sometimes during war, and apologies have been made. But also, there is a strong push from the other side trying to twist everything to support their side (just like the army twisting things to support their own). Just because you don't like the military, doesn't mean that anything disagreeing with it is correct...nor is it necessarily wrong. Remember, there are always THREE sides to any story. His side, her side, and the TRUTH. Good luck on finding the third...

Re:The flip side (0, Flamebait)

Swampash (1131503) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482920)

To be classified as Top Secret, the release of that information must cause imminent, serious harm to the United States and/or its allies and assets.

If you actually believe that, I have a bridge you may be interested in.

Re:The flip side (1)

Abcd1234 (188840) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482930)

To be classified as Top Secret, the release of that information must cause imminent, serious harm to the United States and/or its allies and assets.

Though, to be fair, whether or not something is given Top Secret classification is up to the discretion of the President (and possibly others?). I'm willing to bet there are *many* Top Secret documents that are actually intended to cover up distasteful military activity, among other things.

In short, the state secret privilege is very important, but there's a balance that must be met. Unfortunately, unless there's some way to audit the process, there's no way to tell if that privilege is being abused, and so the only thing you can do is rely on whistleblowers, who are breaking the law despite doing what is morally right.

As for this guy? I don't know, I don't know the nature of the documents he released. You may be right that he may have compromised the safety of soldiers in theatre. OTOH, he may have released documents exposing coverups of military misdeeds. Whether one justifies the other, though, is, unfortunately, very much a gray area.

why would he do this (4, Insightful)

Paralizer (792155) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482746)

When Manning told Lamo that he leaked a quarter-million classified embassy cables, Lamo contacted the Army, and then met with Army CID investigators and the FBI at a Starbucks near his house in Carmichael, California, where he passed the agents a copy of the chat logs.

If you're going to do something illegal that you don't want anyone to know you did, perhaps you shouldn't tell people about it on the internet. Whether it was the morally right thing to do or not, leaking it anonymously then bragging you were the source makes no sense and is stupid.

astounding hack! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482764)

Manning comments on his amazing hacker skillz to get classified info.

FTFA:

"I would come in with music on a CD-RW labeled with something like 'Lady Gaga', erase the music then write a compressed split file," he wrote. "No one suspected a thing and, odds are, they never will."

"[I] listened and lip-synced to Lady Gaga's 'Telephone' while exfiltrating possibly the largest data spillage in American history," he added later. "Weak servers, weak logging, weak physical security, weak counter-intelligence, inattentive signal analysis... a perfect storm."

Huh. And Congress (specifically fascist Joe Lieberman) wants to give the military the ability to control civilian networks in a "cyber emergency". Yeah, good luck with that...

Perhaps a hero (1, Insightful)

BrendaEM (871664) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482842)

If this person was the only person who helped people murdered make their last testament, then is he not a hero?

Did he not rise to a greater challenge, to truth and integrity?

I say. if he can be imprisoned, so can we.

What about Lamo? (2, Insightful)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482870)

Lamo says he felt he had no choice but to turn in Manning, but that he's now concerned about the soldier's status and well-being.

Sure, Manning broke some security regulations. Naughty, but there are extenuating circumstances such as exposing a cover up of war crimes and multiple counts of second degree murder and multiple counts of attempted murder. Lamo admits he is cooperating with a conspiracy to commit murder and is apparently a supporter of war crime activities. But Lamo is worried about Manning's situation? I wonder about Lamo's judgment. Supporting murder and war crimes is perfectly OK if you're at a high level in the US Govt, in fact "we" expect that kind of behavior from our leaders, but Lamo is not at such a level, he's just a punk whom got busted. I'd think Lamo's in a much more precarious legal situation than Manning is in... One thing to violate some paper handling regulations, another to be a quisling.

There's a couple of scandals here (4, Funny)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 3 years ago | (#32482896)

The first scandal is the usual shit the government does, make a mistake and then cover it up. We've seen a lot of those in this war. We know this stuff happens all the time but the proof of it always hits me in the gut.

The second scandal is that the government is so poor at covering this stuff up that a junior guy like this is able to find the info and disseminate it without any difficulty. Absolutely piss-poor security. Perversely, I expect and demand a modicum of competence to go along with the amoral and evil. I feel insulted when I find out I'm getting screwed over by Mayberry Machiavellis.

No charge (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32482902)

"A family member says he’s being held in custody in Kuwait, and has not been formally charged."

Honest question - Why do they not charge him?

My only thoughts are that either there is little/no evidence against him - OR - they are waiting for interest in the leaks to die away so there is little coverage when he is charged.

Any other ideas?

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