Life should be full of strangeness, like a rich painting
THE DEEPER GAME BEHIND #IRISHWATER 10:26 Fri Dec 05, 2014
Bonds, Balance Sheets and Irish Water - Limerick, Dublin and Galway, Dec 2014 10:08 Tue Dec 02, 2014
Global Finance, Money and Power - Lecture 11: Alternatives 08:55 Thu Nov 27, 2014
THE WORLD COULD SORT OUT EBOLA FOR THE PRICE OF ONE BONO 23:07 Tue Nov 18, 2014
WELL THAT?S IRISH WATER FINALLY SORTED OUT 23:04 Tue Nov 18, 2014
Dublin Opinion >>
Joined up thinking for the Irish Left
Antonio Gramsci: A New Year?s Letter Mon Dec 22, 2014 14:37 | William Wall
Right2Water and Podemos Thu Dec 18, 2014 20:47 | Richard
The Disillusioned Citizen Wed Dec 17, 2014 14:15 | Kathy
The Power of Paint Tue Dec 16, 2014 10:33 | Seán Sheehan
If this is a recovery why are people getting poorer? Mon Dec 15, 2014 17:36 | Michael Burke
Irish Left Review >>
Call for Papers: International Criminal Justice: Theory, Policy and Practice Thu Dec 18, 2014 15:19 | Anna Marie Brennan
The UN Migrant Workers Convention: How the EU Can Show that Migrants Matter Thu Dec 18, 2014 06:00 | GuestPost
2015 International Criminal Court Summer School at the Irish Centre for Human Rights Wed Dec 17, 2014 11:24 | GuestPost
After the 8th. #repealthe8th Tue Dec 16, 2014 09:00 | Máiréad Enright
Call for Applications: FLAC Public Interest Law Fellowship Sat Dec 13, 2014 17:04 | admin
Human Rights in Ireland >>
Farewell from NWL Sun May 19, 2013 14:00 | namawinelake
Happy 70th Birthday, Michael Sun May 19, 2013 14:00 | namawinelake
Of the Week? Sat May 18, 2013 00:02 | namawinelake
Noonan denies IBRC legal fees loan approval to Paddy McKillen was in breach of E... Fri May 17, 2013 14:23 | namawinelake
Gayle Killilea Dunne asks to be added as notice party in Sean Dunne?s bankruptcy Fri May 17, 2013 12:30 | namawinelake
NAMA Wine Lake >>
Pre-sentence letter to Barack Obama
rights and freedoms |
Thursday August 22, 2013 09:47 by Justin Morahan
sent by e-mail to US Embassy
Below is a letter to President Barack Obama on the occasion of a protest by Colm Roddy and me outside the US Embassy in Dublin, Wednesday 21 July before Whistleblower Bradley Manning was given a horrendous sentence for telling the truth.
Dear President Barack Obama
I write to you, through your Ambassador in Ireland, as the sentencing of a whistleblower, Bradley Manning is imminent. Bradley is a member of the United States Forces of which you, President Obama, are the Commander-in-Chief. What happens in the US Armed Forces is your responsibility.
When there is heinous wrongdoing happening within your army, you bear the ultimate responsibility for that wrongdoing. If a whistleblower reveals the heinous wrongdoing, it is your duty to protect the whistleblower, to shield her or him from harm and, if possible, honour her or him in order to encourage other whistleblowers and to protect the truth.
What happened in the Baghdad "air strikes" of July 12 2007 was heinous in the extreme. I have seen and perused the video at length but even your own official account is chilling to read.
"When the cameraman on the ground aimed his camera in the direction of Bravo Company 2–16, a pilot remarked "He's getting ready to fire". An Apache maneuvered around a building to get a clear field of fire and shot all nine men, killing eight. " (US Central Command release)
We know that subsequently when a van pulled up to take on board an injured civilian, the Apache opened fire on van and helpers and injured civilian, killing three and wounding two children inside the van. The footage of these events and the accompanying dialogue resembles what one might expect from a seriously deranged horror movie. Bradley revealed the truth of these events. Admittedly he did not report them to his superior officer and later regretted that. But why should that make any difference to you, Mr President? The truth was out. You would be glad that you would be able to stop similar outrages by your forces in the future. You would take the necessary steps to prevent any repetition of the evil-doing of July 12 2007. And you would credit Bradley Manning for helping you to take these steps. Because, as Commander-in-Chief, you do not stand over such atrocities.
Or am I wrong? What did you do?
You allowed (or maybe even ordered) Bradley Manning to be arrested and charged with, among other thing, "aiding the enemy" - an offence that could have draw down the barbarous execution of the accused person. You prejudiced his trial by telling a reporter "He broke the law" at a time when he was not declared guilty of breaking any law. In four words you denied him any chance of a fair trial. Yet, you allowed a trial to proceed.
Meanwhile Bradley Manning was kept under lock and key in chains, subjected to nudity, isolation, harassment, sleep-deprivation - all inhuman punishments bordering on torture. Only international protest ended this inhuman treatment of a prisoner not yet tried in any court.
Now he has been found by a military court to be guilty of lesser charges and today the prosecutors are requesting a sixty year sentence! It is another day of infamy for you and the United States.
Unless, that is, you salvage some credibility by pardoning him, after sentence.
That is my request to you today.
With best personal wishes
Justin Morahan, human rights activist, pacifist.