Reaction to Obama's War on Whistleblowers leads to creation of Freedom of the Press Foundation which is intended to help groups such as Wikileaks which are doing essentially investigative journalism to publish leaked documents to call those in power to account for their accounts.
New Funding Group Calls for 100 More WikiLeaks to Offset Unprecedented Gov't Secrecy
Published on 5 Mar 2013
http://www.democracynow.org - WikiLeaks is set to receive major new financial support this week from a new group that funds independent journalism organizations dedicated to transparency and accountability in government. This comes as Mastercard, Visa, and PayPal continue to refuse to process payments for WikiLeaks, making it difficult to send donations. "We don't just need one WikiLeaks, we need 10 or 100. We have a situation in this country where government secrecy is at an all-time high," says Freedom of the Press Foundation Co-founder and Executive Director Trevor Timm. We are also joined by Guardian columnist Glenn Greenwald, who is a member of the foundation's board.
Bradley Manning audio of his statement to the court explaining why he leaked the government documents including videos to Wikileaks.
A short film by Laura Poitras
Bradley Manning's Full Statement c/o Freedom of the Press Foundation , March 11, 2013
A Salute to Bradley Manning, Whistleblower, As We Hear His Words for the First Time Daniel Ellsberg,Huffington Post, March 12, 2013
Today, the Freedom of the Press Foundation, an organization that I co-founded and of which I'm on the board, has published an audio recording of Bradley Manning's speech to a military court from two weeks ago, in which he gives his reasons and motivations behind leaking over 700,000 government documents to WikiLeaks.
Whoever made this recording, and I don't know who the person is, has done the American public a great service. This marks the first time the American public can hear Bradley Manning, in his own voice explain what he did and how he did it.
After listening to this recording and reading his testimony, I believe Bradley Manning is the personification of the word whistleblower.
Secrecy surrounding trial
Manning faces some of exact same charges I faced forty two years ago when I leaked the Pentagon Papers to the New York Times and eighteen other papers. The only difference is I was a civilian, so I could stay out of jail on bond while the trial was going on, and was able to talk to the media throughout. I took responsibility for what I had done on the day of my arrest, and I was able to explain why I did it.
But thanks to the judge's rulings in Manning's case, the public has barely heard anything from Manning at all. No official transcripts of the proceeding are released to the public, and when documents like the judge's court orders are released, it is weeks after the fact -- and only in response to a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit.
Now I hope the American people can see Manning in a different light. In 1971, I was able to give the media my side of the story, and it is long overdue Manning is able to do the same. As Manning has now done, I stipulated as to all the facts for which I was accused. And I did that for several reasons, and I suspect that Manning had the same motives.
First, it was to exonerate a number of people who were suspected of helping me, like former Defense Department colleagues Mort Halperin, Leslie Gelb and others. I was able to state flatly they did not know about the release in the midst of President Nixon's anxious desire to indict several of them.
And Manning, in saying he took responsibility for the leaks and describing in great detail how he did it, was able to say Julian Assange and Wikileaks had nothing to do with his decision to leak. WikiLeaks had not giving him any special means beyond what a normal newspaper would do.
Now, there's really now excuse for the grand jury chasing Julian Assange for conspiracy to commit espionage to continue. If they're not going to indict the New York Times--and there is no constitutional basis for them to do so--there's no reason for them to investigate or indict Assange or WikiLeaks.
As the former general counsel of the New York Times James Goodale once said, "Charging Julian Assange with 'conspiracy to commit espionage' would effectively be setting a precedent with a charge that more accurately could be characterized as 'conspiracy to commit journalism.'"
The second thing Manning did with his statement -- which you can finally hear today -- was to explain his motives (he could not do that while he was still putting the responsibility on the government -- by pleading not guilty -- to prove what he had done beyond a reasonable doubt).
They were the same motives I felt 42 years ago. We both felt the horror of reading about deceptive, and even criminal, activity. We both felt the public needed this information and should have had it years ago. So we both released classified documents about a bloody, hopeless war.
Such criminal, dangerous, and deceptive behavior by the government can only be changed if Congress and the public are informed of them. And when official secrecy allows the government to cover these facts up, the only way to bring them to the public is to break secrecy regulations.
Fox News making sense???
Fox News Shep Smith and Judge Napolitano take on Obama's Drone attacks and targeted assassinations for which Obama refuses any oversight and refuses to release information or the details of the process for who is on the kill list. Obama assassinated several American citizens allegedly connected to terrorists.
Shep Smith And Judge Napolitano Eviscerate Obama’s ‘Reprehensible’ Drone Strike Policy Liberty Crier.com ,March 9, 2013