The forced nudity imposed on Bradley Manning followed by the forced resignation of P.J. Crowley has clearly created a media tipping point in this story. In addition to the scathing New York Times Editorial from Monday (Manning's treatment "conjures creepy memories of how the Bush administration used to treat terror suspects"), editorial condemnation has now come from The Los Angeles Times ("punishment, not protection, is the purpose of these degrading measures") and The Guardian ("There was at least the ghost of an excuse for bullying foreign combatants but no US need for mistreating one of their own"). Perhaps most notably, even the military-revering, establishment-defending Washington Post Editorial Page today emphatically condemns these conditions as "uncomfortably close to the kind of intimidating and humiliating tactics disavowed after the abuses at the Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo prisons that eroded the country’s standing in the world."Plus: Tom Tomorrow: The president consults with General Flustercluck.
The abusive treatment of Manning is indeed now reverberating internationally. Der Spiegel has a long article on the conditions of Manning's detention, noting that "even US politicians believe they're illegal" and highlighting the point I've repeatedly made:Before he was inaugurated, Obama talked about the importance of whistleblowers, or sources who expose abuses within their organizations. Such "acts of courage and patriotism" ought to be "encouraged, rather than stifled," his website read at the time.Meanwhile, The Guardian has an excellent article today describing how Physicians for Human Rights is now formally raising objections to the role of brig psychiatrists in enabling Manning's inhumane treatment (just as they once raised objections to the role played by health professionals at Guantanamo).
Once in office, Obama underwent a radical shift. His government is currently taking legal action against a number of whistleblowers. The government apparently wants to use the Manning case as a deterrent.
greenwald: manning forced nudity = media tipping point
Glenn Greenwald, including links and emphasis:
Posted by laura k at 3/18/2011 04:30:00 PM
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