Thug Nation

We’re really a disgusting nation:

From the beginning of his detention, Manning has been held in intensive solitary confinement. For 23 out of 24 hours every day — for seven straight months and counting — he sits completely alone in his cell. Even inside his cell, his activities are heavily restricted; he’s barred even from exercising and is under constant surveillance to enforce those restrictions. For reasons that appear completely punitive, he’s being denied many of the most basic attributes of civilized imprisonment, including even a pillow or sheets for his bed (he is not and never has been on suicide watch). For the one hour per day when he is freed from this isolation, he is barred from accessing any news or current events programs. Lt. Villiard protested that the conditions are not “like jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole,” but confirmed that he is in solitary confinement, entirely alone in his cell except for the one hour per day he is taken out.

In sum, Manning has been subjected for many months without pause to inhumane, personality-erasing, soul-destroying, insanity-inducing conditions of isolation similar to those perfected at America’s Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado: all without so much as having been convicted of anything. And as is true of many prisoners subjected to warped treatment of this sort, the brig’s medical personnel now administer regular doses of anti-depressants to Manning to prevent his brain from snapping from the effects of this isolation.

Just by itself, the type of prolonged solitary confinement to which Manning has been subjected for many months is widely viewed around the world as highly injurious, inhumane, punitive, and arguably even a form of torture. In his widely praised March, 2009 New Yorker article — entitled “Is Long-Term Solitary Confinement Torture?” — the surgeon and journalist Atul Gawande assembled expert opinion and personal anecdotes to demonstrate that, as he put it, “all human beings experience isolation as torture.” By itself, prolonged solitary confinement routinely destroys a person’s mind and drives them into insanity. A March, 2010 article in The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law explains that “solitary confinement is recognized as difficult to withstand; indeed, psychological stressors such as isolation can be as clinically distressing as physical torture.”

There is absolutely no reason for this whatsoever, other than the fact that the United States has morphed into a brutal and repressive regime that is terrified of dissent. The only difference between this treatment and what we imagine third world nations do is that we have cleaner and more modern facilities. Hell, at this point Manning would probably welcome physical torture- it would be a welcome diversion.

And yet, this goes on every day in the greatest nation in the world, the home of the free and the land of the brave. Brought to our collective knees in terror of a rosy-cheeked private who had the balls to allow our lies to be published. And for that, we must emulate those great men who have gone before us- Stalin, Pol Pot, Idi Amin, and other great human rights leader, and publicly make a show of our ability to crush one man. Because that is what this is- a message to every one else. There is no other reason to be subjecting Manning to this behavior, as he could be safely secured at any county jailhouse in this nation. Hell, he could be returned to his unit and confined to quarters, and nothing would happen.

We’re basically scum these days. It’s really sad. And I do not know how Lt. Villard and those like them live with themselves or sleep at night. I really don’t. Spare me the “they’re just following orders” crap. But we’ll go on spouting bullshit about Human Rights in every international forum we can find. American exceptionalism!

*** Update ***

For Christ’s sake, people. I simply am astounded at the lengths some of you will go to excuse this. “But I don’t like or trust Glenn Greenwald!” Who gives a shit if you don’t like him or trust him, try looking at the damned links he provides? What the hell is wrong with your cognitive skills? At the bottom of the page, there is an update which states a minor correction from THE OFFICIAL IN CHARGE OF MANNING’S DETENTION. That means they have read what Glenn said, and found one error, and corrected it. That would suggest to most people with at least one functioning synapse that, horror of horrors, Glenn’s piece is ACCURATE.

And yes manic progressives in the comments, this is on Obama. If we know about his, so does he, and he could stop it. It’s a goddamned disgrace. I didn’t realize I need to point this out explicitly, because Obama is, after all, the President and Commander-in-Chief. I sort of assumed you dullards knew this.

370 replies
  1. 1
    Cris says:

    Wouldn’t it be okay if it was Peyton Manning instead?

  2. 2
    Corner Stone says:

    Cue burnspbesq boldly stating “don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time” in 3..2..

  3. 3
    Dave says:

    Gee…where have I heard the “just following orders” defense before…

  4. 4
  5. 5
    jeff says:

    Completely agree with you, John, and what I think about Manning’s culpability is irrelevant to how he is being treated.

  6. 6
    Perry Como says:

    We’re basically scum these days.

    s/basically//

    There’s no basically about it. The United States is torturing a suspected whistleblower. Pfc. Manning will not come out of this sane.

  7. 7
    Mr. Furious says:

    What a fucking abomination.

    As I read the excerpt, my brain automatically assumed. We were talking about some supposed terrorist, where there could be some threat cooked up. But, no. This is just a whistle-blower / paper thief.

  8. 8
    Perry Como says:

    Also, too. Not enough people stood up when the US torture machine did the same thing to Jose Padilla, so it’s not surprising that the machine is now grinding up an alleged whistleblower. I bet Lieberman (I-Crypto-fascist) would personally like to waterboard Manning.

  9. 9
    Thunderlizard says:

    As a Marine NCO who’s previously worked in visual range of the Quantico brig… I am ashamed of what’s happening to that kid.

    That.

    Ain’t.

    Right.

    (PS if Manning does, in fact, have dual UK citizenship, as the Greenwald article mentions, then I don’t think he could have had TS+ clearance. Meaning that this persecution pertains to merely *secret/NOFORN*, stuff that does NOT constitute a strategic risk to the United States)

  10. 10
    The Dangerman says:

    I’m sorry, but if you’re in the military and you pull shit like this, I could hardly care less. Fuck him.

    Speaking of which, that Military Doctor that wouldn’t go to Afghanistan because he personally didn’t see Obama’s birth certificate took it up the ass in his court martial. After nearly two decades in the Service, I hope he loses all his benes and retirement. Fuck him, too.

    Edit: He’s a “whistleblower” my ass. What did he “whistleblow”? That Hillary said bad things about her diplomatic partners? That North Korea was jonesing for Clapton? Give me a break.

  11. 11
    freelancer says:

    We’re also disgustingly stupid, homophobic, xenophobic, racist, and immature when a huge chunk of the adult population views this and says “It’s just a joke. Jeez!”.

  12. 12
    Giants fan says:

    How much responsibility does the Obama admin have for this? Do you think Obama himself personally knows about this? If so, why is he not ordering more humane treatment?

  13. 13
    russell says:

    Fuck with us, and we’ll fuck with you. And we’re the pros.

    IMO we’ve crossed the Rubicon.

    Sorry to see it go, on the whole the republican (small r) experiment had its good points while it lasted.

  14. 14
    retr2327 says:

    I must take issue with your post: it’s Idi Amin, not Edi.

    Other than that . . .

  15. 15
    lacp says:

    So the dude hasn’t even had a trial yet and we’re down with the torture thingie already? Damn, who said the military can’t be efficient when it wants to be?

  16. 16
    russell says:

    Do you think Obama himself personally knows about this?

    If J Random Blogger knows about it, I’m guessing Obama is aware.

  17. 17
    russell says:

    I must take issue with your post: it’s Idi Amin, not Edi.

    Edi was the sister.

  18. 18
    FeFiFo says:

    The bigger problem is the US does this in every state, in every prison system, every day and outside of Amnesty International, no one blinks an eye.

    @The Dangerman: Making excuses for torture is inhumane and repulsive, regardless of what the person being tortured did – lest someone find an acceptable reason to torture *you* next.

    Among other things released in the cables, how about the State Dept. covering up for DynCorp’s sexual slavery – again?

  19. 19
    burnspbesq says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Fuck you, three times, in the ass, with a lacrosse goaltender’s stick.

    This is me not making any attempt to justify the circumstances of Manning’s confinement, which are, simply put, barbaric and uncivilized.

    Some of us are capable of nuanced thinking. You obviously aren’t. Must suck to be you.

  20. 20
    jl says:

    It ain’t pretty.

    Seems to me we have the GOP already paying Obama back for his give away compromise by going ahead with outrageous stalling tactics.

    We have the Very Serious think tank (AEI) rewriting the bio the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commissions to hide his role in financial deregulation so it won’t look so suspicious when he writes a report on the panic that omits deregulation as having any causal role.

    We have this.

    What is next?

    Well, I suggest that we use the following as an excuse to charge pot farmers in Humboldt county with terrorism and give them the Manning treatment:

    Mexico marijuana growers learn new tricks from U.S.

    AMATA, Mexico (Reuters) – Farmers growing marijuana in remote Mexican mountains are adopting techniques pioneered in the United States to produce more potent pot and boost profits from the cash crop that is fueling a deadly drug war.

    In the fertile valleys of Sinaloa in northwestern Mexico, soldiers this year found 60 acres of covered greenhouses equipped with sophisticated irrigation and fertilization systems growing seemingly endless rows of marijuana plants. In another part of Sinaloa, the cradle of Mexican drug trafficking, the army recently busted a marijuana lab with potted plants heated day and night by lamps, a change from traditional outdoor cultivation of the crop and a sign drug cartels are using more savvy production methods.

    “This is new. They now have technology so the plant will grow faster; we think the techniques are coming from (the United States),” said a soldier commanding a battalion ripping up 5-foot (1.5-meter)-high marijuana plants growing along a river bank near the dusty town of Amata, Sinaloa.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/201.....xico_drugs

  21. 21
    The Dangerman says:

    @FeFiFo:

    Making excuses for torture is inhumane and repulsive, regardless of what the person being tortured did – lest someone find an acceptable reason to torture you next.

    If he’s a civilian, I’m with you, 100%; he’s in the military. So, I reiterate; fuck him.

  22. 22
    Erik Vanderhoff says:

    @Perry Como: My mind also went immediately to descriptions of Padilla’s behavior in his court hearings after years of solitary confinement. They broke a man they ended up charging with absolutely nothing which he had been arrested for. Manning will be the same.

  23. 23
    Ash Can says:

    Good grief, Cole, get a grip. No, there’s no excuse to treat this guy this severely, but he’s no hero. He broke laws that were put in place for legitimate reasons. He shouldn’t be held under these conditions and he should go to trial as soon as possible — and, perhaps even more important, it needs to be determined who was working with him on this caper — but spare me the hagiography until someone comes along who can be more selective and therefore more effective and useful with his leaks.

  24. 24
    John Cole says:

    @The Dangerman: Butcher Me On The Court
    Too Many Elbows To Report
    Now You’re Poking Me In The Eye
    Bill Laimbeer Motherfucker, It’s Time For You To Die
    Tough Guy, It’s Time To Check Yourself
    Dribbling The Ball Like The Biz Can Be Bad
    For Your Health
    Tough Guy, What You Got To Prove
    Moving Like An Elephant, That’s Your Favorite
    Tough Guy, Your Shit Is Going Out
    Tough Guy
    Box Me Out With Your Fat Ass
    Throw Me Around Like A Bounce Pass
    You’ve Got A Tombstone Hanging Over Your Dick
    Cause A Minor Earthquake When You Throw A Moving Pick
    Touch Guy, You Think You’re Like The Shaq
    Keep Running Around, You’ll Catch A Heart Attack
    Tough Guy, What Are You Giving Me
    The Way You’re Playing Ball, You’ll Stop Me From Living B
    Tough Guy, Tough Guy
    Tough Guy, You’re Shit Is Weak
    Tough Guy, You Fucking Freak
    Tough Guy, I’ll Stick I’ll Stick Your Shit
    Tough Guy

  25. 25
    Nellcote says:

    I’d like a second source for this info please.

    I wonder if Manning would be in personal danger if he was placed in general population. I can’t imagine everyone else in the military views him as a hero.

  26. 26
    Carnacki says:

    I used to believe in America. I was never very good about following a religious faith even when I tried, but I believed in the idea of America. I never thought the country perfect, but I always thought that overall we were striving as a people towards a more perfect union.

    I got really involved in 2004 because after what was exposed at Abu Ghraib I felt I had to do something. And for 6.5 years I’ve tried really hard. I thought naively the people and the politicians who had gone insane after Sept. 11th could be brought back to their natural decency.

    I was wrong. This is who we are. And with each instance like this by the highest officials, those at state and county levels will be encouraged to imitate and follow.

    It is only going to get worse.

    I wrote Death in a West Virginia coal mine yesterday. It might be my last blog post.

  27. 27
    John Cole says:

    @Ash Can: Who is treating him like a hero? I’m objecting to his being tortured, you simple git.

  28. 28
    geg6 says:

    @The Dangerman:

    He is accused of leaking film of our fine, fine military in the act of murder and bunch of documents that, for the most part, aren’t secret, let alone top secret, by any sane definition.

    So let’s torture him! It’s especially fun when he has not yet been charged, let alone convicted of anything, isn’t it?

  29. 29
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: I imagine you’re American? Your tax dollars pay for incalculable global suffering and thus you’re just as culpable as the military that performs the acts in your name. Therefore, you’re up to be tortured next. Because its “justifiable”.

  30. 30
    General Stuck says:

    Without links of sourcing, I wouldn’t believe what Glenn Greenwald told me for about any reason. If it is true, then it is true, and very poor treatment of Mr. Manning. But basing it on “interviews” with people “directly familiar” on GG’s say so screams out polemic bullshit to me.

  31. 31
    burnspbesq says:

    @Ash Can:

    I’d like to see Manning roll over on Assange, but if he does so after this kind of treatment, it’s anybody’s guess whether anything he says will survive a motion to suppress. So this treatment is barbaric AND stupid.

  32. 32
    Cris says:

    @Ash Can: Seriously, what fucking hagiography? Are you responding to John or to somebody else?

  33. 33
    The Dangerman says:

    @John Cole:

    Bill Laimbeer Motherfucker, It’s Time For You To Die

    You can call me all sorts of things, but calling me Lamebeer is fighting words (Laker’s Fan in the 80’s and the 90’s). BTW, this ain’t torture; he’s in isolation, in the same conditions as Supermax per the article.

    I guess I’m supposed to salute this Guy for some sick reason; personally, he’s little more than someone who fragged his superior in combat. Distinctions with little difference.

  34. 34
    scarshapedstar says:

    We’re basically scum these days. It’s really sad.

    Elections have consequences, and stolen elections have even worse consequences.

  35. 35
    geg6 says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Fuck you, asshole. Until recently (and obviously due to psychopaths like you in charge), the U.S. armed services had to follow the rule of law, too. Even in the case of a Private Manning, innocent until proven guilty was guaranteed under the UMCJ.

    Jeebus, this country is so fucked.

  36. 36
    singfoom says:

    Torture is what happens to those who do not obey. Does anyone else feel like we’re living in a weird parallel version of They Live, except the aliens have been replaced with normal human beings with no sense or morality or fairness?

  37. 37
    Tim I says:

    Holy overreaction! PFC Manning is being held in solitary. That isn’t unusual in American prisons. It is frequently done to protect the prisoner and that might be the case here. A Marine Corps brig might not be a very safe environment for a man who betrayed his country.

    Since he is likely never to get released from prison, I would hope that when he reaches his final destination, probably Ft. Leavenworth, he is allowed more social contact.

  38. 38
    Corner Stone says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Fuck you, three times, in the ass, with a lacrosse goaltender’s stick.

    I’m not sure it’s even possible to parody you anymore.

  39. 39
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: In your eyes releasing documents (that have not resulted in any deaths) is the same as killing a direct officer? Amnesty International has railed against the conditions of the US prison complex for years; claiming that Manning’s situation is similar to that isn’t exactly bolstering your case.

  40. 40
    scav says:

    The current ‘Mercan hat trick: Losing it’s way, mind and soul.

  41. 41
    FeFiFo says:

    @Tim I: Prolonged solitary confinement does count as torture. The fact this happens in Supermax prisons doesn’t make it not torture, it means that torture is used in Supermax prisons.

  42. 42
    The Dangerman says:

    @geg6:

    Fuck you, asshole.

    Right back at you.

    Let’s reiterate here; he’s in fucking isolation. Too true, that’s damn cruel, but he’s been charged with serious crimes. And, in the FUCKING MILITARY, if you are charged with a serious crime, your ass is in deep motherfucking trouble.

    Compare it, once again, to that idiot that was sucked in by the birthers; his crime was “minimal” (by comparison), but he’s gonna get fucked because, in the military, you disobey an order (and in so public a manner), you’re in deep shit.

  43. 43
    Jules says:

    Everyone deserves humane treatment no matter what their crime.

    I always assumed solitary was reserved for criminals who are a danger to others or would be in danger among the general population, but even then you do not :

    From the beginning of his detention, Manning has been held in intensive solitary confinement. For 23 out of 24 hours every day—for seven straight months and counting—he sits completely alone in his cell. Even inside his cell, his activities are heavily restricted; he’s barred even from exercising and is under constant surveillance to enforce those restrictions. For reasons that appear completely punitive, he’s being denied many of the most basic attributes of civilized imprisonment, including even a pillow or sheets for his bed (he is not and never has been on suicide watch). For the one hour per day when he is freed from this isolation, he is barred from accessing any news or current events programs.

    This seems even worse as he has not yet been found guilty of any crime.
    Don’t care if he is in the military or he might be a traitor.
    Things like this diminish us all.

  44. 44
    Dan says:

    A Google search turned up Free Bradley Manning at bradleymanning.org. Is it paranoid to suppose that this is a Cointelpro style intelligence operation?

  45. 45
    burnspbesq says:

    @General Stuck:

    Agree that that is pretty lame sourcing. His lawyers should be eager to go on the record about that if it’s true. Never too early to start working the jury pool.

  46. 46
    Ash Can says:

    @John Cole:
    @Cris:

    Then evidently I read “a rosy-cheeked private who had the balls to allow our lies to be published” completely wrong then, didn’t I?

    Come on, you guys. There’s every reason in the world to be outraged by Manning’s treatment, but this is too much.

  47. 47
    General Stuck says:

    @Tim I:

    exactly. there is solitary, and then there are all these other hyperbolic allegations of the details in Greewald’s article, that we have seen so many times before.

  48. 48
    Erik Vanderhoff says:

    @The Dangerman: Did you skip over the part of the article where it discussed the studies that find that prolonged isolation causes brain functioning identical to traumatic brain injuries (like motorcycle accidents and IEDs)?

    Isolation can cause severe depression, schizophrenia, and permanent damage to the body’s circadian rhythms. If you don’t think that’s torture, you’re a monster.

  49. 49
    geg6 says:

    @Nellcote:

    People can be held in solitary without the punitive aspects of confinement that Manning is being subjected to. Do you really think anyone needs to be kept, for their own safety, in the same conditions as Moussaoui, Eric Rudolph, Terry Nichols, Ramzi Yousef, and Ted Kaczynski are in the Florence Supermax?

    Gawd, people here and all over American are fucking inhuman monsters.

  50. 50
    water balloon says:

    So he is allowed television and exercise, just not in his cell. He is allowed contact with people on the outside. I don’t really see this as torture. I would like to know if he’s allowed to take books out from the library and write letters.

  51. 51
    Calouste says:

    __

    We’re basically scum these days.

    The US has been scum for a very long time. The only thing that is different these days is that it happens in America to American citizens by American citizens instead of say in Chile to Chilean citizens by Chilean citizens on instigation of the CIA or in Central America by US-supported death squads or in Iran by the secret police of a CIA-installed Shah.

  52. 52
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    Count me in the “its barbaric and torture” camp. If solitary was really designed to protect prisoners who wouldn’t last a day in the general population, why are his living conditions so inhumane? Its not just a physical separation from the rest of the prison, its also having to put up with punitive measures that do nothing but needlessly punish him.

    EDIT: because merely being in jail apparently isn’t enough these days, inmates *have* to be punished whilst in jail/prison, amirite?

  53. 53
    dollared says:

    John, it’s that deeply conservative way in which you believe our country should follow the laws, fight fair, and work for all of its citizens under the Constitution that is the reason I come here.

    It also marks you as they type of person who has not been allowed access to power or money since Jimmy Carter had to turn the briefcase over to Ronald Reagan and Ollie North.

    It really is a crying shame. I live near Canada and would be happy to move there. For my family, it would be the right financial decision, because of reasonable health care and solvent banks.

    There’s just this feeling I have that those 10,000 American nukes could would be put to really bad use if we left control of the US to the Jesus/Netanyahoo/Blackwater/WellPoint/AT&T axis of evil.

  54. 54
    WyldPirate says:

    @Tim I:

    Holy overreaction! PFC Manning is being held in solitary. That isn’t unusual in American prisons. It is frequently done to protect the prisoner and that might be the case here.

    According to the article, that is not the case.

    Reading…it’s fundamental.

  55. 55
    Perry Como says:

    @The Dangerman: Extended solitary confinement is torture and will make a person insane. Shut your fuck hole you stupid twit.

  56. 56
    Ash Can says:

    @burnspbesq:

    So this treatment is barbaric AND stupid.

    This is the crux of the problem. (Its practical aspect, at least. Its moral nature is self-evident.) He could rat out everyone at the Pentagon and the State Department, from the janitor on up, but it wouldn’t make a damned bit of difference if he’s wigged out by his mistreatment in custody.

    ETA: And I do mean ratting out people at the Pentagon and State, rather than just Wikileaks. I’d bet the ranch there was some inside complicity.

  57. 57
    The Dangerman says:

    @Erik Vanderhoff:

    Did you skip over the part of the article where it discussed the studies that find that prolonged isolation causes brain functioning identical to traumatic brain injuries (like motorcycle accidents and IEDs)?

    I read in the article that he was being prescribed SSRI’s to combat depression; BFD, lots of people are on SSRI’s these days.

    Talk to me when this fucker has been shown to have a traumatic brain injury; at risk of a brain injury doesn’t sound all that bad if he’s being monitored. Sounds to me like he’s being given quality medical care as compared to some in this country.

  58. 58
    geg6 says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Are you even the slightest bit aware of what the conditions are at ADX Florence and what effects they have on the inmates there? And we’re talking about inmates who have been charged, tried, and convicted of the worst crimes imaginable, not someone who has simply been accused, not charged, not being tried or even allowed to meet with attorneys, and certainly hasn’t been convicted of anything, let alone something like fragging an officer.

    You’re an ass who doesn’t know a goddam thing about what you’re adamantly defending. Go find a bunch of Teabaggers. You sound just like their kind of people.

  59. 59
    FeFiFo says:

    @John Cole: you might want to re-emphasize in your post that Manning *has not yet been convicted of a crime*. That may give some of the myopically bloodthirsty among us pause, even if only for a moment.

  60. 60
    mapaghimagsik says:

    So why no exercise?

  61. 61
    eemom says:

    Speaking of which, that Military Doctor that wouldn’t go to Afghanistan because he personally didn’t see Obama’s birth certificate took it up the ass in his court martial.

    GOOD.

  62. 62
    Scanner Lightly says:

    @water balloon:

    “I don’t really see this as torture.”

    Compared to the evidence presented in the article? Well, that’s nice.

    Medical tests conducted in 1992 on Yugoslavian prisoners subjected to an average of six months of isolation — roughly the amount to which Manning has now been subjected — “revealed brain abnormalities months afterward; the most severe were found in prisoners who had endured either head trauma sufficient to render them unconscious or, yes, solitary confinement. Without sustained social interaction, the human brain may become as impaired as one that has incurred a traumatic injury.”

  63. 63
    D. Mason says:

    This whole situation is just too bizarre for me to think about.

  64. 64
    John Cole says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Talk to me when this fucker has been shown to have a traumatic brain injury; at risk of a brain injury doesn’t sound all that bad if he’s being monitored. Sounds to me like he’s being given quality medical care as compared to some in this country.

    I’m thinking you’re the one with the traumatic brain injury.

  65. 65
    IrishGirl says:

    Americans don’t think of this as torture and too many Americans completely lack in empathy. They are incapable of the thought experiments needed to put themselves into another person’s place and imagine what that solitary confinement would be like.

    I have taught Beginning Ethics and Correctional Theory to college age students off and on for years. Whenever we discuss imprisonment, I always have the discussion of what is torture. And I always bring up solitary confinement. In all those years, no one but me (so we’re talking one in hundreds of students) thought that it was torture. EVEN after they’re informed as to what it entails. EVEN after reading accounts by those that have lived through it. I would have, if I could have, made an assignment that they live that way for a week and then write about how it affected them.

    I think this lack of empathy is at the core of why we have this YOYO attitude in the US and it will be the source of our ultimate downfall. Then again, I may just be feeling cynical today…..well, actually I feel that way every day.

  66. 66
    sukabi says:

    @The Dangerman: Mannings was responsible for the videos and other stuff on the Iraq war… the AP reporters and friends being executed by the helicopter crew…

    the diplomatic cables we don’t know who gave them to WikiLeaks…

  67. 67
    The Dangerman says:

    @Perry Como:

    Extended solitary confinement is torture and will make a person insane. Shut your fuck hole you stupid twit.

    Blow me.

    Seriously, this guy is Pond Scum and the fact that he might be having a bad nights sleep and needs SSRI’s is reason to call it torture. It ain’t torture, Gang.

  68. 68
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: “Talk to me when this fucker shows traumatic brain injury”. So, after the damage has been done then, is that it? Why don’t you address the points I made about you being as culpable as the next American for our Government’s overseas atrocities and how that makes you a justifiable torture target under your own guidelines?

  69. 69
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: Yes, it is, you are defending the torture of someone who hasn’t even been convicted of a crime, and by your own rationalizations there isn’t an American alive that wouldn’t be subject to torture at the hands of those we’ve harmed globally.

  70. 70
    Amanda in the South Bay says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Yeah, I’m sure the psychiatric personnel there are soooo concerned about his mental health.

    I’ve been in (civilian) mental health wards as a patient, even there treatment and quality of care is uneven at best. Its somewhat naive to think that the most visible American military prisoner is somehow receiving quality treatment.

    Maybe if he wasnt held under such barbaric conditions to begin with…tell me again, what do his restrictions have to do with being kept separate from the general population?

  71. 71
    IrishGirl says:

    @The Dangerman: And your referring to what authority to make your point? What argument? Waiting on an actual statement of fact, some kind of logical reasoning…something beyond jingoistic “f*ck yeah, America” nonsense.

  72. 72
    FeFiFo says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay: Because others might harm him, a justification steeped in irony if I ever saw one.

  73. 73
    Sasha says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Compare it, once again, to that idiot that was sucked in by the birthers; his crime was “minimal” (by comparison), but he’s gonna get fucked because, in the military, you disobey an order (and in so public a manner), you’re in deep shit.

    If “that idiot that was sucked in by the birthers” was stuck in (literally) maddening solitary confinement and conditions for months before being courtmartialed for disobeying an order, your comparison might hold water.

    Otherwise, you’re comparing pineapples to pinapple grenades.

  74. 74
    The Dangerman says:

    @John Cole:

    I’m thinking you’re the one with the traumatic brain injury.

    Blow me, too; line forms to the Right (pun intended).

    Seriously, this place is descending into Daily Kos territory. He’s in isolation (as many are), he’s got medical care (as many don’t), perhaps he’s at risk of something bad, but that’s why he’s got medical care.

    It isn’t torture in any meaningful legal definition of the term; unless you can show me where I am wrong in that legal analysis, you’re the one with brain damage.

  75. 75
    FeFiFo says:

    For our next Balloon Juice comment trick, watch Dangerman defend waterboarding as “just a little splash”.

  76. 76
    Perry Como says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Blow me.

    Next time I need a tooth pick I may take you up on that offer.

    Seriously, this guy is Pond Scum and the fact that he might be having a bad nights sleep and needs SSRI’s is reason to call it torture.

    Really? He’s been convicted? Can you cite that or are you too busy furiously masturbating to torture porn with your pencil dick?

    I fucking hate torture apologists.

  77. 77
    El Tiburon says:

    @General Stuck:

    Without links of sourcing, I wouldn’t believe what Glenn Greenwald told me for about any reason.

    Then you are a gigantic ignoramus.

  78. 78
    IrishGirl says:

    And what about the legality of it? From what I know*, solitary confinement is only legally supposed to be used in certain circumstances: 1) as punishment for some wrongdoing while incarcerated 2) as protection from other inmates (although this might be dodgy, have to look up case law and correctional policy on it) or 3) as protection in case of suicide (although one doesn’t NEED solitary confinement to protect someone from suicide, just extra attention).

    *Masters in Criminal Justice, experienced college professor, former law enforcement, etc.

  79. 79
    polyorchnid octopunch says:

    This is just more evidence the US is circling the bowl.

    I understand that there are new sooper-seekrit negotiations going on with our resident Prime Fascist about integrating our borders. Given what a lot of your kind find acceptable, I can only hope it dies on the vine.

    And to think at one time I respected the US.

  80. 80
    This German fellow says:

    I’m assuming he is a guest of Leavenworth military prison.

    My understanding is that this treatment is completely standard for their maximum security high value inmates. So this isn’t singling him out, this is how they have been treating all maximum security inmates for a considerable amount of time.

  81. 81
    Erik Vanderhoff says:

    @The Dangerman:

    SSRIs mask symptoms, they don’t stop the damage. My god, you’re not just a monster; you’re a fucking moron.

    Here’s the most important part: Manning is convicted in no court other than that of public opinion. This treatment is a violation of his basic human dignity; worse, it’s a violation of his every right as an American citizen convicted under no crime, either under the UCMJ or the US Code.

    Bring your rationalizations when he’s convicted.

  82. 82
    Cat says:

    @Thunderlizard:

    (PS if Manning does, in fact, have dual UK citizenship, as the Greenwald article mentions, then I don’t think he could have had TS+ clearance. Meaning that this persecution pertains to merely secret/NOFORN, stuff that does NOT constitute a strategic risk to the United States)

    They make exceptions. There have been non US Nationals with TS or higher clearances.

  83. 83
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: You keep ignoring that not only have people provided cites as to why this is considered torture, and that it does result in horrific physical and mental damage, but also the fact that *Manning has not been convicted of a crime*. Justify that, and be ready for someone to justify torturing you for the crimes they’ve already convicted you of in their heads.

  84. 84
    The Dangerman says:

    @Perry Como:

    I fucking hate torture apologists.

    Yo, Perry, perhaps to many tiny bubbles in your drink (or was that Don Ho?)?

    It isn’t fucking torture. You can call it torture all you want, but it isn’t so.

    Unpleasant? No doubt. A fucking nightmare? Probably. Torture? No.

  85. 85
    El Tiburon says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Blow me, too; line forms to the Right (pun intended).

    Reading this drivel is torture.

  86. 86
    FeFiFo says:

    Just for Dangerman, one cite of many available courtesy of Amnesty International:

    n August 2007, a federal district court Magistrate Judge issued a recommendation to deny a motion by the Louisiana authorities seeking to dismiss the claim. The court found there was sufficient evidence to determine that the conditions constituted a deprivation of a basic human need. *The court also found that prison officials should have been aware that the lack of adequate exercise, social isolation, lack of environmental stimulation and other deprivations imposed on the prisoners could be seriously harmful to their physical and mental health. *

  87. 87
    BGinCHI says:

    The post on Manning was depressing and the comments are more so.

    Jesus, Dangerman, that’s just cruel and stupid. He hasn’t been convicted. There’s a whole lot of complexity to whether the info he allegedly accessed and gave to wikileaks has been harmful or an anodyne for the national security state mentality we’re sinking into.

    So rushing to defend inhumane treatment “because he’s in the military” doesn’t make a damn bit of sense.

    You’re out of your league, Donny.

  88. 88
    El Tiburon says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Yo, Perry, perhaps to many tiny bubbles in your drink (or was that Don Ho?).

    King of ZIng! Please make it stop.

  89. 89
    Fuzz says:

    This is the new normal, we do the torturing ourselves rather than let our friends do it for us (looking at you Egypt). When people talk about ways the war on terror changed us as a country this is it, we hate the other side (often justifiably, sometimes not) to the point that not only is much of the population indifferent to torture but a large segment of it have turned into enthusiasts. We’ve always been an angry country, and when that anger is directed at someone or something it always turns dark and gets frightening. If there’s ever another terrorist attack (hopefully there won’t be obviously) and it’s anything close to 9/11 in scope, it will get worse.

  90. 90
    Svensker says:

    There is absolutely no reason for this whatsoever, other than the fact that the United States has morphed into a brutal and repressive regime that is terrified of dissent.

    Pretty much.

    And for those of you excusing his treatment because he “deserves” it, where in the “endowed by their maker with inalienable rights” clause does it say “except when we don’t like him very much”? Or “except when that person is in the military”?

    Buncha sick fucks.

  91. 91
    The Dangerman says:

    @Erik Vanderhoff:

    This treatment is a violation of his basic human dignity; worse, it’s a violation of his every right as an American citizen convicted under no crime, either under the UCMJ or the US Code.

    Really? Find me a citation in the UCMJ, otherwise, shut the hell up.

  92. 92
    FeFiFo says:

    I think I get it – for Dangerman, its not torture because he says so, and he says so because he doesn’t like Manning and wants to see him suffer. You can admit it Dangerman – its a pretty typically American mindset to fall into.

  93. 93
    Giants fan says:

    Right, so “we’re a disgusting nation,” but better not say a bad word about Obama, who presumably knows about this and has the authority to treat the guy humanely. This is the real disconnect I have about this administration. Yeah, they’re better than the sociopaths on the right, and maybe some of the compromises were necessary (honestly, I have no idea anymore), but how do you spin this?

  94. 94
    Kryptik says:

    For those of you braying ‘FUCK THE TRAITOR!’, tell me…just how did what he do constitute full on, ‘Fuck America’ treason that you condone this kind of bullshit, or at the very least find him to deserve it even if the practice is questionable in your view? Seriously, what the fuck. What the green fuck.

    @jl:

    And isn’t it wonderful that they’re going to get to block DADT standalone now? Especially after that Amos guy basically said ‘Gays will get our soldiers killed because they’re gonna keep making passes at them on the battlefield’? A guy who got confirmed by the Senate overwhelmingly? How long until we get all those GOP moderates ‘finding religion’ and citing this guy as why they cannot, ‘in good conscience’, repeat DADT, ‘for the safety of our men and women overseas’? You know, despite nearly every other single fucking country and ally we have in the Western World allowing gays to serve openly without issue?

    Fuck all. We really are a rotten fucking country.

  95. 95
    Perry Como says:

    @The Dangerman: Fap Fap Fap — ooh yeah.

    Fucking torture apologist.

  96. 96
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: Explain why this type of treatment is ok to levy on someone that hasn’t even been convicted of a crime, or fuck straight off (to adopt your own argumentative tactic).

  97. 97
  98. 98
    The Dangerman says:

    The court also found that prison officials should have been aware that the lack of adequate exercise, social isolation, lack of environmental stimulation and other deprivations imposed on the prisoners could be seriously harmful to their physical and mental health. *

    Could be seriously harmful. COULD be seriously harmful.

    Reading IS fundamental.

  99. 99
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: Oh fantastic, I still exist. Why is this type of treatment acceptable when the individual *HAS NOT BEEN CONVICTED OF A CRIME*?

  100. 100
    j low says:

    @The Dangerman: You are the human embodiment of evil.

  101. 101
    Sasha says:

    @The Dangerman:

    It isn’t torture in any meaningful legal definition of the term; unless you can show me where I am wrong in that legal analysis, you’re the one with brain damage.

    Ask and ye shall receive:

    US Code
    TITLE 18 > PART I > CHAPTER 113C > § 2340

    (1) “torture” means an act committed by a person acting under the color of law specifically intended to inflict severe physical or mental pain or suffering (other than pain or suffering incidental to lawful sanctions) upon another person within his custody or physical control;

    (2) “severe mental pain or suffering” means the prolonged mental harm caused by or resulting from—

    (A) the intentional infliction or threatened infliction of severe physical pain or suffering;

    (B) the administration or application, or threatened administration or application, of mind-altering substances or other procedures calculated to disrupt profoundly the senses or the personality;

    (C) the threat of imminent death; or

    (D) the threat that another person will imminently be subjected to death, severe physical pain or suffering, or the administration or application of mind-altering substances or other procedures calculated to disrupt profoundly the senses or personality;

    So under 2(B), yeah, it’s torture.

    I’ll give you a minute to take your foot out of your mouth.

  102. 102
    General Stuck says:

    @El Tiburon:

    Then you are a gigantic ignoramus.

    LOL, well, that might be. But I am smart enough to know that anyone who takes soley, the word of about any blogger, and especially Lone Gunman grade GG, or for that matter anyone, on anything, is a bigger ignoramus. But I realize some folks loves their outrage fix directed at The Man, so carry on.

    And I await the next Cole scree on the scrurge of anonymous sourcing by the msm.

    And wonder in the meantime, if Manning’s lawyers are giggling in the corner, that their PR stunt has made it unto the blogosphere without their names attached to it.

    I got that from an anonymous source, btw.

  103. 103
    geg6 says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Well, this is good news for John McCain, then!

    “It’s an awful thing, solitary,” John McCain wrote of his five and a half years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam—more than two years of it spent in isolation in a fifteen-by-fifteen-foot cell, unable to communicate with other P.O.W.s except by tap code, secreted notes, or by speaking into an enamel cup pressed against the wall. “It crushes your spirit and weakens your resistance more effectively than any other form of mistreatment.”

    Even more than the physical torture he endured.

    http://www.newyorker.com/repor.....ct_gawande

    Dickhead.

  104. 104
    The Dangerman says:

    @FeFiFo:

    Explain why this type of treatment is ok to levy on someone that hasn’t even been convicted of a crime.

    Does Manning have an attorney? He or she must be the shits given this treatment is torture prior to conviction.

    Give me a break.

  105. 105
    Comrade Sock Puppet of the Great Satan says:

    I’m sorry. Manning is a fucking traitor: more damage to the country than Hansen or Ames, and probably the worst since Fuchs.

    If Libby was a fucking traitorous bastard for leaking Valerie Plame’s identity (which he was) then Manning is Libby to the power of N for leaking close to a million documents.

    Leaking the State Dept. cables to Assange wasn’t some act of whistleblowing of some great conspiracy to violate human rights – it was a straight-up dickish move that fucked the State Dept’s diplomatic work and also will trash closer work between the DoD and the State Dept. Which will make war-war more likely in the future than jaw-jaw.

    Me, I’d put him in Cocytus with that poseur Assange in an Ugolino-Ruggeiri cranium snack bar setup, while Lucifer sings off-tune Lady Gaga songs, but as Dante isn’t available for prison interior design, 23 hours/day solitary is suitable punishment for him and to deter others thinking about his road to infamy.

  106. 106
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: What the blue fuck does that even mean? What are you trying to say? For god’s sake just admit you approve of torture when its someone you don’t like and let us all move on from your idiocy.

  107. 107
    Joe Beese says:

    @Giants fan:

    How much responsibility does the Obama admin have for this?

    How about it, Mr. Cole?

    Does the President you’re so proud to support have an excuse for torturing an American soldier convicted of no crime?

    Or does the buck stop… elsewhere?

  108. 108
    IrishGirl says:

    @The Dangerman: How about the Federal Courts? The Supreme Court has not ruled on solitary confinement as torture (mainly a secondary point brought up in death penalty cases) but many of the lower courts have. The federal courts have found that “confinements for long periods of time without the opportunity for regular outdoor exercise does, as a matter of law, constitute cruel and unusual punishment….”

    Sinclair v. Henderson

    Okay, off to find what’s in UCMJ

  109. 109
    Paris says:

    inhumane, personality-erasing, soul-destroying, insanity-inducing conditions of isolation similar to those perfected at America’s Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado

    So basically, we’ve been treating prisoners this way for some time but thanks to Guantanamo, we are now aware of it.

  110. 110
    singfoom says:

    @The Dangerman: You’re fucking pond scum. Guess what, torture comes in a lot of forms. Thank goodness you’re not the arbiter of what is and isn’t torture.

  111. 111
    Ash Can says:

    @The Dangerman: OK, I dinged John for going overboard, now I’m going to do the same thing to you. Why are you saying this isn’t torture? I’m no fan of Manning’s by any means, but how is this not excessive? Isn’t this just a John-Yoo-style “legality” that you’re arguing?

    Finally, I recall you saying at some point that you had a CIA background yourself. Is there something associated with that experience that makes you take such an excessively dismissive view of Manning?

  112. 112
    Scanner Lightly says:

    In Glenn’s article, we have the following sources:

    1) a New Yorker article about long-term solitary confinement calling it “torture”, and published the results of a US military study of POWs calling it “as torturous and agonizing as any physical abuse they suffered”.

    2) an article in The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, calling it “as clinically distressing as torture”

    3) John McCain, calling his isolation in Vietnam “an awful thing….crushes your spirit…”

    4) a bipartisan National Commission on America’s Prisons calling for solitary confinement’s elimination, describing it as “what can only be described as torturous conditions”

    5) a Yugoslavian study from 1992 showing that head trauma and solitary confinement did roughly equal damage to brain function

    6) a 1940s US Supreme Court ruling considering these issues called solitary “torture”, and equal to “the rack, the thumbscrew, and the wheel”

    7) the European Court of Human Rights found Convention of Human Rights violations in Bulgaria under solitary confinement conditions similar to Manning’s

    And instead of contesting Glenn’s interpretation of this evidence, the only argument is “well, doesn’t sound like it to me!” The combined weight of all this suggests to me that these conditions are morally unsound and wrong. Someone trying to lawyer their way out of these implied issues by trying to claim it happens to be strictly legal is revealing.

  113. 113
    Kryptik says:

    @Comrade Sock Puppet of the Great Satan:

    Just to clue you in…Manning isn’t responsible for the Diplomatic Cables. As @sukabi points out above, he is responsible for the video of attacks on civvies in Afghanistan. So…yeah.

  114. 114
    polyorchnid octopunch says:

    Dangerman’s clearly a troll. You guys need to stop answering him. He’s just Yet Another American Fascist; it’s not like they’re not as common as cockroaches in a crackflop, esp. in comment sections.

  115. 115
    The Dangerman says:

    Been “fun”, but I just got a call saying my 82 year old Dad was in an auto accident; so, play nicely.

    And for those fast with the namecalling, you really do have to assume that this guy doesn’t have an Attorney protecting his interests. I’m sure he does…

    …and now, I must go see what the damages are.

  116. 116
    FeFiFo says:

    @Comrade Sock Puppet of the Great Satan: Mmmmmm torture porn. The great American past-time. And we wonder why the world looks at us with disgust.

  117. 117
    IrishGirl says:

    @The Dangerman: Okay, here’s what case law says for military justice

    United States v. Corteguera, 56 MJ 330 (although a pretrial detainee may not be subjected to punishment for the crime for which he is charged, he may be subjected to “discomforting” administrative measures reasonably related to the effective management of the confinement facility).

    (even if “discomforting” administrative measures imposed upon a pretrial detainee are not reasonable, de minimis impositions on a pretrial detainee are not cognizable under Article 13, UCMJ).

    If the military says they have him in solitary confinement due to danger from other prisoners, I call bullsh*t. True solitary confinement as they describe it here isn’t necessary. Simply keeping him separate from other prisoners is sufficient. The other stuff they are doing to him is beyond discomfort.

    Article 13 is the code re: Punishment before Trial

  118. 118
    The Dangerman says:

    @Ash Can:

    Finally, I recall you saying at some point that you had a CIA background yourself.

    No. I had the rough equivalent of a Top Secret clearance. Back in the days of the Soviet Union, so it has been a while.

    Is there something associated with that experience that makes you take such an excessively dismissive view of Manning?

    Perhaps; hard to say. I’d have to have NOT have had my experiences to evaluate that adequately.

    I take passing secrets, even those classified Confidential, very, VERY seriously. I know what would have happened to me if I had done something similar.

    Edit: Only body damage (car, not person). Still, I must go.

  119. 119
    FeFiFo says:

    @The Dangerman: Ah, so its the military fetishism for obeying authority at any cost. And because the military is the one torturing Manning – still yet to be convicted of a crime, something you keep putting off on his attorney for some reason – you’ll defend it as not torture.

    Go see to your father, if he exists. I pray he has a better grip on basic humanity than his child.

  120. 120
    someguy says:

    Clearly, the salient points are:

    1) This is torture

    2) America blows ass. Worst country in the world. We’d all leave and throw ourselves on the mercy of Canada or maybe France, but we’re sticking it out in the face of horrible odds make sure the Republicans don’t take over in 2012, which is incredibly brave and selfless of us. We’d get medals for it if there was any justice in this world. You fuckers should at least recognize our incredible bravery and selflessness.

    3) How dare you question Greenwald. Questioning Greenwald is sooooo last month, when Greenwald’s assertions were eminently questionable. You don’t want to be Mr. November now, do you? The Jane Hamshers of the internet wouldn’t like that…

    4) Putting up with Dangerman is torture, and if you don’t see that and condemn him, you’re a monster too.

    5) All of you are monsters. Me too probably, to somebody.

    6) Pot oughtta be legalized and self-loathing, impotent whining probably oughtta be criminalized. And if you don’t agree with that you’re a monster.

  121. 121
    scav says:

    Actually, I think the America’s reaction to the cable release, including the confinement described, the terrified poo-flinging at Assange by Huckleby Hound and the laPalinista choir and the whole “Assassinate the Traitor!” low-information foam-finger-wavers, has done more damage to the international stature of the US than the penny-ante shit they contained. “The Rules Don’t Appeal to US” motto doesn’t really play that well, all in all, outside the frontiers as it seems to inside to a subset. Go Figure.

  122. 122
    Giants fan says:

    You guys are piling on Dangerman who’s advocating his position in writing but not a word about Obama who’s implementing the position in *real life*.

  123. 123
    eemom says:

    mmmm, argument about solitary/torture flavored with wikileaks……sides of Greenwald and Obama-bashing…….the perfect holiday lunch.

  124. 124
    General Stuck says:

    @Giants fan:

    but not a word about Obama who’s implementing the position in real life.

    “Real life” for me, doesn’t come from the unverified scratchings of an “Obama worse than Bush” polemicist.

  125. 125
    General Stuck says:

    @eemom:

    gots any extra popcorn, eemom?

  126. 126
    Erik Vanderhoff says:

    @The Dangerman: Excuse me? No court martial has been held; ergo, Manning is not convicted of violating the UCMJ. Get thee to a basic reading comprehension seminar.

  127. 127
    FeFiFo says:

    @scav: I have to agree. The last two weeks of US reaction to the leaks has damaged our fractured reputation far more than any single cable released (except maybe the DynCorp thing. that shit is repulsive).

  128. 128
    Bulworth says:

    Fortunately the media is giving lots of critical attention to Manning’s detention. Oh wait. Of course if some member of Congress began raising a stink about it, too, that would help. But I realize there are tax cuts to pass and all that. I’d be interested in hearing the response from members of Congress to this from their constituents (us). I should probably do that right now.

  129. 129
    scav says:

    Somewhat OT, but we seem to have got a price-point for a Dark Lord: $250 mill.

    Nigeria’s anti-corruption police have dropped charges against Dick Cheney, the former US vice-president, over a multi-million dollar bribery case after the energy firm Halliburton agreed to pay up to $250m (£161m) in fines.
    __
    The move followed the intervention of ex-president George Bush Sr and former secretary of state James Baker, according to Nigerian press reports.

  130. 130
    Montysano says:

    On Friday, our son graduates from the University of Montevallo (magna cum laude, thanks very much). He and his girlfriend are actively researching the logistics of a move to Central or South America. As neo-DFHs, the horror that the USA has become too much for them. Mrs. Monty and I hope they don’t follow through, but completely understand if they do.

    Dangerman’s comments are typical of American “thought” these days.

  131. 131
    FeFiFo says:

    @Giants fan: Also the corporate prison complex that tortures our own citizens (there’s a prison strike in Georgia going on right now over that – which the media has completely blacked out) and thus makes this type of treatment acceptable to Americans, since it happens in a Supermax it must be legal, right?

    We’re all complicit, from Obama on down.

  132. 132
    geg6 says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Here, asshole. Here’s the entire UCMJ. Now YOU show me where it justifies your subhuman and sadistic wishes for Private Manning, who I will reiterate has been charged and convicted of NOTHING.

    http://www.army.mil/references.....PROVISIONS

    I looked. Didn’t see anything that would back you up.

  133. 133
    Giants fan says:

    @General Stuck – which facts about the Manning detention do you dispute? And hypothetically if Greenwald’s facts were true, do you believe Obama bears responsibility for Manning’s treatment? Or should we pin it on Dangerman who advocates for solitary confinement on the Balloon Juice blog. I’m just asking the question. I don’t know what Obama knows or how explicitly he’s involved in these decisions. But it’s surprising that everyone’s getting so riled up at some random commenter and not addressing the guy presumably with the authority to remedy the situation.

  134. 134
    geg6 says:

    @Giants fan:

    Obama is a piece of shit on this matter, no doubt about it.

    Happy now?

  135. 135
    Paula says:

    @Calouste:

    Well, add to that list non-citizen migrants captured crossing the border and held indefinitely in horrid conditions.

    Or, young men of color being held in overcrowded prisons with sub-par medical care.

    The left blogosphere is filled with overeager neophytes who don’t know history, but the “oh what has happened to us!” refrain is a little ridiculous. America is doing what it’s always been doing, just now to nice-looking young men with internet connections rather than weak, stupid and/or naive foreigners or dark-skinned young Americans from the inner city.

  136. 136
    Tony J says:

    @The Dangerman:

    Assuming you’re not just bullshitting to get out of a losing argument, best wishes for your Dad.

    But on the off-chance that you – are – just bullshitting, bear in mind that every single “It’s not torture, show me how anything being done to him is torture!” demand that you’ve thrown out has been answered by people who actually took a few seconds out of their busy schedules to check the relevant laws before voicing an opinion.

    Trolls get very little sympathy here.

  137. 137
    DPirate says:

    @Tim I: I agree with you. It’s likely not as bad as the article makes it out to be. I very much doubt they deny him a bible (or other holy book if not christian), though I could be wrong, and I just mention this as having any sort of reading material is beneficial.

    That said, the people above making distinction for his military status are insane. We’ve prosecuted military personnel for not acting on their conscience, so torturing them when they do is hypocritical at best.

    I do not count his treatment as torture, though.

  138. 138
    geg6 says:

    @Giants fan:

    Whenever Stuck doesn’t like what he reads, especially if it comes from a person who he doesn’t like, he’s like my little niece when I slip and say fuck in front of her…sticks his fingers in his ears, chants “lalalalalalalalala, I can’t hear you!”

  139. 139
    Moonbatman says:

    No wonder the Bush saw waterboarding as Ok.
    As US already tortured prisoners with Intensive solitary confinement used at America’s Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado.

    We are a disgusting nation as proven by the Show trial of Persecuted Political Prisoner and Social Justice Warrior Steven Hayes for his retribution against the rich Fatcat Petit family while the Police waited outside for a half-hour.

  140. 140
    Carnacki says:

    @Carnacki: By last blog post, I don’t mean to imply anything but I might quit political blogging, btw. Sorry for the confusion and thanks to those who emailed me.

  141. 141
    IrishGirl says:

    @Paula: Careful there, I’m not a neophyte, ignorant, etc….so you’re using a pretty broad brush there. And yes, we’ve done it for years and some of us have been protesting it for years. This issue with Manning is just a continuation. That all being acknowledged doesn’t preclude that the US is in decline.

  142. 142
    Cat says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:

    I believe there are 2 fronts the application is working, A) how honest you are and B) does your story stick together.

    Yes, the Gov’t will know almost every place you’ve lived in the last 15 years, any crimes you’ve been committed of, and your FICO.

    They won’t know if your a drug user, in the closet, or running a dog fighting ring.

    The personal interviews are used to explore these with open ended questions like, “how many times have you seen X drunk”, “How was X’s trip to Mexico?”, “What does X do for fun”, “Did you know X was arrested for soliciting trannys?”, “How do you feel about X being in a 12 step program”, or “How is X at managing his money”.

    Its not just to verify you aren’t using a stolen identity, its to see if you are exploitable also.

  143. 143
    General Stuck says:

    @Giants fan:

    which facts about the Manning detention do you dispute? And hypothetically if Greenwald’s facts were true

    Pretty much all of them, except that he may be being held in isolation from the other prisoners, most likely for his own protection, due to the likelyhood that other military prisoners, albeit convicted criminals of one sort or another, would not appreciate alleged traitors in their midst.

    If I had to guess on GG;s sourcing, I would suspect Manning’s lawyers, you can swallow whole mr Greenwald accusations, I will not be.

  144. 144
    drkrick says:

    I only had a secret, and never got around to upgrading to TS before I got out, but the amount of background info you were supposed to provide was just staggering (and probably useless, IMHO). I just keep thinking that the government should already know all this stuff, without you having to volunteer it.

    I think part of the exercise it to compare what they already know with what you tell them. I’ve seen people get turned down on even low level background checks for not disclosing stuff that would have been no problem if they’d revealed it themselves. Civilian equivalent – a bachelor’s isn’t required for the job, but you’re not gonna get hired if you claim one you don’t really have.

    And yes, this is evil BS and is clearly intimidation aimed at the next person considering a document dump to Wikileaks or OpenSecrets. Kind of like the films they used to show the KGB recruits of double agents being tortured to death in steel refinery ladles. The comparison makes me so proud.

  145. 145
    WyldPirate says:

    @Giants fan:

    ight, so “we’re a disgusting nation,” but better not say a bad word about Obama, who presumably knows about this and has the authority to treat the guy humanely. This is the real disconnect I have about this administration. Yeah, they’re better than the sociopaths on the right, and maybe some of the compromises were necessary (honestly, I have no idea anymore), but how do you spin this?

    It’s easy here in BJ land.

  146. 146
    Mogden says:

    Truly disgusting. The government has become quite evil (or maybe it was always evil and I just didn’t notice.)

  147. 147
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    I’m beginning to think you are a twelve year old commenting on an adult blog for shits and giggles. I do not know Giants Fan in the least. I do know you, however, and ignore your manic rantings as much as possible

  148. 148
    El Tiburon says:

    @Giants fan:

    You guys are piling on Dangerman who’s advocating his position in writing but not a word about Obama who’s implementing the position in real life.

    Look, Obama is simply the Commander-in -Chief.

    He can order battalions of troops anywhere in the world to kill anybody. He can order bombs and drones to be dropped on villages from Kabul to Katmandu. He can even order the assassination of US citizens on his whim alone.

    But he is simply incapable of ordering US troops to treat a US soldier humanely. That is asking too much.

    Also, Look Forward Not Backwards.

    Also, It’s the Best We Could Do.

  149. 149
    WyldPirate says:

    @General Stuck:

    Damn, Stuck. One would think that after all the smack downs you take by making statements you can’t back up that you would have learned by now that Google is your friend.

    But noooooo…You insist on getting schooled again.

    Get’s my bag of popcorn to watch someone else do it this time…

  150. 150
    Jules says:

    @Giants fan:

    I always assume that when one is critical of something the military is doing it follows that you are also being critical of the President.

    See I can have issues with the President without yelling how he sold us out, is the worst President ever, hates poor people and wants the unemployed to die while sucking up to the rich.

  151. 151
    WyldPirate says:

    @El Tiburon:

    You forgot…No one could have anticipated and,

    It is not this Administtration’s policy..

  152. 152
    retr2327 says:

    Not to pour gasoline on a fire or anything, but I’m not ready to sign off on the proposition that once Manning HAS been convicted, this kind of deliberate mistreatment (torture, really) would just be hunky-dory.

    And no, that’s not because I admire or necessarily agree with what he did. It’s because torture doesn’t become okay after conviction, either.

  153. 153
    General Stuck says:

    @WyldPirate:

    Your clown paint needs freshening up grasshopper

  154. 154
    General Stuck says:

    Sometimes, when we have these Greenwald Cultist get togethers here on BJ, I wonder if Malkin hasn’t somehow tapped our signal.

  155. 155
    General Stuck says:

    @WyldPirate:

    Damn, Stuck. One would think that after all the smack downs you take by making statements you can’t back up that you would have learned by now that Google is your friend.

    LOL, nothing is backed up on this thread, other than hate Obama bile.

  156. 156
    ericblair says:

    @Amanda in the South Bay:

    I only had a secret, and never got around to upgrading to TS before I got out, but the amount of background info you were supposed to provide was just staggering (and probably useless, IMHO). I just keep thinking that the government should already know all this stuff, without you having to volunteer it.

    Considering most of this info is buried in some paper file somewhere, I guess the local, state, and federal governments “know” it, just not in any usable form.

    I agree, most of this stuff is probably useless, especially for some 18 year old kid. I’m pretty sure it’s done this way because looking at what people have done and finding minor inconsistencies or violations is easy, and actually figuring out who is trustworthy is actually hard (so we don’t do that). Looking at some of the big espionage cases and the backgrounds of the people involved, I’ve got to think that nobody with a brain in the investigative services is convinced they know anything about who’s going to go bad, and just want to make sure that there’s nothing obvious in their pasts that would make in into the Washington Post so everyone can then shrug and say “who knew”.

    I doubt that the private had UK citizenship, even if he only had a collateral TS and not TS/SCI. Maybe there have been exceptions, but I find it hard to believe they’d bother for an E1 and even if the paperwork went through he’d be in his mid-twenties by the time the case would be resolved.

  157. 157
    Matt says:

    For those who think solitary confinement is not torture, then you owe Communist Russia an apology. Stringent isolation regimes such as those being applied to Manning were commonplaces in breaking dissidents in Brezhnevian Russia and were condemned vociferously by the United States as violations of human rights. In fact, the US State Department has protested similar actions in Putin’s Russia directed against people like Khodarkovsky.
    Not that sadists like Dangerman (who I really do believe would justify breaking Manning on the wheel if he felt the guy had offended against the idol of national security) really care about becoming associated with such thuggishness. And if he really was given a top-secret security clearance in Soviet times, he certainly knows that “medical care” was given to Soviet dissidents who had broken down in solitary confinement.
    John is right. This is torture and the man has been convicted of nothing.

  158. 158
    Barry says:

    @The Dangerman: “Speaking of which, that Military Doctor that wouldn’t go to Afghanistan because he personally didn’t see Obama’s birth certificate took it up the ass in his court martial. After nearly two decades in the Service, I hope he loses all his benes and retirement. Fuck him, too.”

    Was he held in solitary for several months or years before his trial? Frankly, it’d be justifiable, for somebody who was formenting mutiny.

  159. 159
    FeFiFo says:

    @General Stuck: To save the next 200 comments, let’s meet at a dairy queen of your specification and beat the snot out of each other, internet style. The winner gets to be right, forever.

  160. 160

    @Tim I: Yes, and he’s being prevented from exercising for his own protection. And he’s denied any kind of reading material for his own protection.

    Please look into what you’re defending before you defend it.

  161. 161
    west coast says:

    @The Dangerman:

    I’m sorry, but if you’re in the military and you pull shit like this, I could hardly care less. Fuck him.

    This is the best argument for reinstating the draft I’ve ever read.

  162. 162
    General Stuck says:

    @FeFiFo:

    I say we have a sugar free ice cream cone and shake hands.

  163. 163
    matoko_chan says:

    the United States has morphed into a brutal and repressive regime that is terrified of dissent.

    the systemkiller is WAI.
    and it cannot be turned off.

    For all U.S. troops: you can still access 2000 mirrors | http://is.gd/iNL7c
    about 1 hour ago via web
    U.S. Air Force bans troops from reading The New York Times | http://is.gd/iNKMo
    about 1 hour ago via web
    Columbia Journalism Faculty call for Government to recognise Wikileaks’ First Amendment Rights | http://is.gd/iLkqS
    about 19 hours ago via web

    cant stop the signal.

  164. 164
    DonkeyKong says:

    “The social psychology of this century reveals a major lesson: often it is not so much the kind of person a man is as the kind of situation in which he finds himself that determines how he will act.” –Stanley Milgram, 1974

    The Milgram Experiments

    Most participants asked the experimenter whether they should continue. The experimenter issued a series of commands to prod the participant along:

    “Please continue.”
    “The experiment requires that you continue.”
    “It is absolutely essential that you continue.”
    “You have no other choice, you must go on.”

    In this country you have us at hello.

  165. 165
    WyldPirate says:

    @General Stuck:

    Hey dumbfuck Stuck, try going to Greenwald’s article and looking at the plethora of motherfucking sources he cites you dimwitted piece of dogshit.

    The only reason you are criticizing Greenwald over this is because Greenwald doesn’t have his lips glued to Obama’s anal sphincter like you do and dares to criticize him.

  166. 166
    The Sheriff's A Ni- says:

    Internet Pity Party! 1… 2… 3! AWWWWWWW!

    There now we can go back to doing nothing until the next outrage du jour.

  167. 167
    DonkeyKong says:

    Girls Girls, you’re all pretty………..

  168. 168
    FeFiFo says:

    @Mogden: Yeah, its pretty much always been evil since the first boat of rich white guys landed.

  169. 169
    WyldPirate says:

    @General Stuck:

    LOL, nothing is backed up on this thread, other than hate Obama bile

    You idiot. I was referring to you claiming that Greenwald simply used anonymous sources in his article which you clearly didn’t read.

    You simply dismissed what Greenwald said out of hand because of past articles–articles unrelated to Manning–that were critical of Obama.

    Goddamn you’re stupid or brain damaged one. I can’t tell which is applicable.

  170. 170
    General Stuck says:

    @WyldPirate:

    The only reason you are criticizing Greenwald over this is because Greenwald doesn’t have his lips glued to Obama’s anal sphincter like you do and dares to criticize him.

    That’s our little insane Wildychild. And no, GG does not link to his sourcing for his account of how Manning is being treated. If you can see those particular links, then bring them here, and I will adjust my assertions accordingly, or, shut your diarrhea pie hole.

  171. 171
    Hob says:

    @Giants fan: People are responding to Dangerman’s fucked-up justifications because Dangerman is the one who is posting them here. It’s a conversation. How hard is that to understand?

    If Greenwald’s report is accurate, which we don’t know yet, then Obama is ultimately responsible. In that case I’m sad and angry but not really surprised, since we’re already doing the same shit in civilian prisons all over the country. Since most Americans don’t seem to give a shit about that, it’s unlikely to get better in either civilian or military prisons any time soon. That’s no reason to ignore an asshole who is right here in our faces telling us that that’s how it should be.

  172. 172
    General Stuck says:

    @WyldPirate:

    gawd you are dumb

  173. 173
    Tony J says:

    @Giants fan:

    You’ve got a point.

    But the reason Dangerman is getting such a hammering is because he’s actually here, arguing that Manning isn’t actually being tortured because, a) he’s in the military so deserves whatever happens to him, b) It’s not torture anyway, even if it is considered torture by some non-military standards, c) It can’t be torture because if it was his lawyer would have stopped it, etc, etc.

    When you’ve got a troll loose in the field, most people are going to look at the troll.

    As to your point, yes, this looks like the Obama Administration either not getting involved and/or allowing an American citizen to be tortured by the US military as punishment for leaking evidence implicating the US military in war crimes.

    If this had happened during the Bush Administration, the response would have been “This is ordered from the top to send a message that the law doesn’t apply to people who fuck with us”, and it would probably have been true. The fact that it’s happening now, with Obama in the Bush position – now that’s harder to pin a convenient label on.

    Hence the reactive “Sure, this just proves Obama = Bush, are you happy now? Next!” posts up above. No one has a very good answer, yet. I’m sure they’re coming. This looks like another long-burn 400+ thread in the offing.

    But, y’know, I’m English. So what the hell do I know about your traditions?

  174. 174
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    LOL, nothing is backed up on this thread, other than hate Obama bile.

    You really have lost it, dude. Truly. I know you consider yourself too pure an Obot to read Greenwald, but if you could open yourself to actually getting some information about this, rather than reflexively saying it’s impossible that Obama would allow this to happen just because, you’d see that he’s updated the post. And the update basically confirm, through a Quantico brig official, that Glenn’s description of his confinement is true on the facts with the exception that he can watch the news during his television time.

    If you didn’t live in your own little world of denial, you wouldn’t have to get pwned so often. And this from a non-Firebagger/non-Obot.

  175. 175
    Ruckus says:

    @The Dangerman:
    What the fuck difference is it that he is in the military? Not one fucking thing.
    When I was in the military during wartime I did not expect to be treated well if I was captured. I did expect that someone captured and held in a US prison, would not be tortured. Not just US military but everyone. I had a choice about serving my country. There was a draft, so I could leave, I could be jailed, I could join or I could be drafted. I joined because I felt that this country was better, warts and all.
    It no longer is better.
    It no longer is a superpower, it is a repressive society that tortures, lies and kills for the benefit of a few of it’s richest members. Given some of the responses to this post I have reached the tipping point.

    I am no longer proud to be an american.
    Are you?

  176. 176
    GregB says:

    We have met the ancient Romans and we have become them. We might as well reintroduce crucifixion.

  177. 177
    General Stuck says:

    @Hob:

    This. And Obama will have to take his lumps, if such treatment has and is occurring. And I suspect he will accept that responsibility as the CiC, even though he may not have been personally aware of it. If not, then I will join the O bashing. I do doubt GG, however, and that is no secret.

  178. 178
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Assuming this report is true, this is seriously fucked up. No one should be subjected to the kind of treatment that is described. The fact that Manning has yet to be convicted of anything only makes it worse.

  179. 179
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    Again, I say go read the fucking article. It’s been confirmed by Quantico with the exception of the fact that he can watch news when he gets his itty bitty tv time. All else was confirmed.

  180. 180
    Buck says:

    @Hob:

    If Greenwald’s report is accurate, which we don’t know yet, then Obama is ultimately responsible.

    Do we even know if Obama is aware of this?

    (I know… it sounds like such a stupid-ass question, doesn’t it?)

  181. 181
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    .
    .
    @John Cole:

    We’re basically scum these days.

    It’s almost as if continuously capitulating to compromising with sociopathic right-wingers leads to continuously worsening consequences for society.
    .
    .

  182. 182
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    I did read that, and the fact that Manning is allowed access to news and readings about the outside world is hardly a minor detail as GG claims. But pardon me, you fucking loon, I will wait till the military itself, independently responds to these allegations, and will not take them as fact from a GG fucking update.

    And nobody has pawned me on this blog. When I am wrong and shown to be, on factual assertions I make, I admit it and move on.

  183. 183
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    Then you didn’t read it very well. It only says he’s allowed to watch the news when he watches tv. Nothing about reading material at all.

  184. 184
    General Stuck says:

    So we are to take it that the military is in essence torturing Mr. Manning, and I would agree this is the case, if Greenwald’s article claims turn out to be true.
    While at the same time letting him watch teevee.

    does this mane sense, Really?

  185. 185
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    Then you didn’t read it very well. It only says he’s allowed to watch the news when he watches tv. Nothing about reading material at all.

    Well, pardon me then. Do you really think it is noteworthy, or even true that they let him watch teevee, but won’t let him read anything?

  186. 186
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    One hour a day, asshole. One hour a day. That’s the same as what Ramzi Yousef gets in the Supermax.

  187. 187
    Lisa says:

    Can we please not make yet another thread about Wyld and his incessant narcissism and desire for attention? I was bored with him before I was done reading his first comment many moons ago.

    Now back to the real topic: Yes, we are a vile nation. It does not matter if this guy stabbed the First Family to death. Civilized. Nations. Do. Not. Torture. Confining someone to a cell with a metal sheet to lay on (oh, and also restricting his movements WITHIN said cell) is fucking torture. We suck, as a nation.

  188. 188
    Buck says:

    Factual or not, you’ve got to admit Scooter Libby et al fared much better.

  189. 189
    WyldPirate says:

    @Lisa:
    Shut up you dimwitted Obama apologist.

  190. 190
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    Yes, actually, I do. Perhaps you have no experience with the incarceration system in this country and how it works. I do. And it is not at all uncommon to restrict convicts from reading materials when they are attempting to punish them. But then, Bradley Manning hasn’t been convicted and, thus, couldn’t possibly be being punished, could he?

  191. 191
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    I must have missed where “during the proscribed time he is permitted to watch television” was stated as one hour in GG’s update. You know this how?

    The fact that GG got this major detail wrong about Manning’s solitary, pretty much paints a cloud over all the other accusations, imo. But we and I will wait till the truth shakes out in the days to come.

  192. 192
    Lisa says:

    @Uncle Clarence Thomas: Sorry, but we were a nation of scumbag, morally lazy, fuckasses WAY before Obama. We long ago absorbed authoritarian, rightwing memes into our souls. The current slide into the sewers of history began long ago. I don’t even know that a country that was founded on genocide, slavery, and inequality was ever a great nation. Maybe we were for a minute or two. But we sure are a steaming pile of vomit now.

  193. 193
    geg6 says:

    @Lisa:

    Well, if you’re going to say that about WP (with whom I have little to nothing in common nor do I wish to), you have to say the same for Stuck and his incessant narcissism and reflexive apologetics for anything and everything the Obama administration does, right?

  194. 194
    Lisa says:

    @GregB: Word. And gladiators death matches too!

  195. 195
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    Learn a little about how incarceration works and, perhaps, how to read.

    For the one hour per day when he is freed from this isolation, he is barred from accessing any news or current events programs.

    That’s tv time, asshole.

  196. 196
    Buck says:

    @geg6:

    Bradley Manning hasn’t been convicted and, thus, couldn’t possibly be being punished, could he?

    I think they play by different rules in the Military.

  197. 197
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Lisa: This is a bit much. I agree that we as a nation are the sum of what we do, but that includes the best, the worst, and everything in between. If this is happening this fits in the worst category, but it is not sum total of our country.

  198. 198
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    You have turned into a wildythang grade clown, a promotion of sorts.

  199. 199
    Comrade Sock Puppet of the Great Satan says:

    “Just to clue you in…Manning isn’t responsible for the Diplomatic Cables. As @sukabi points out above,”

    Sukabi noted we don’t know yet who leaked the cables.

    ” he is responsible for the video of attacks on civvies in Afghanistan.”

    And a shitload of military intelligence cables to Wikileaks.

    Gosh, 250,000 State Dept Cables turn up on Wikileaks a few months later. What a coincidence, eh?

    Entities should not needlessly multiply, to paraphrase William of Ockham. It’s possible there’s two leakers, but I think we’d already have heard about the arrest of the putative other.

    Besides, as others have pointed out, he may be in solitary confinment for his own personal safety. Manning is a small guy, small guys get brutalized in prison, and Manning’s infamy would get him singled out as a target. If Manning got the crap beaten out of him by other inmate, Greenwald would be the first to complain about inadequate protection given to him.

  200. 200
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    You have nothing. I mean teevee? really? that great source of facts in America. jeebus. This is all Cole’s fault for posting this unverified nonsense, getting the clowns all worked up when we were enjoying relative peace.

  201. 201
    geg6 says:

    @Buck:

    Um, no, they don’t. Please read #130 for the link to the UCMJ where it is all spelled out in clear language.

  202. 202
    Lisa says:

    I don’t agree with reflexive apologetics for any person or ideology. However, that is different from just trolling because you have a personality disorder and a ferocious desire to attention whore. With some people you can really tell if they actually have a position on something (which may or may not be a bullshit position) or whether they just like jumping up and down slinging monkey poop.

    Someone consistently having what you think is a stupid position is not the same as someone arguing with everyone they can about any damn thing they can think of just to get some attention. That shit is boring and belongs on Kos or Salon, where people routinely hijack threads to air out their mental pathologies and personal beefs.

  203. 203
    Tim says:

    John, please, it is WAY past time for grownups to stop using the “we” pronoun when talking about the U.S. or any other government’s actions. These aren’t sports teams, and it is beyond silly to pretend that “we” as citizens have anything to do with what is done by the crooks in Washington, whether for good or bad.

    I certainly have had nothing to do with Private Manning’s current torture, or the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan, or anything else.

    I have had nothing whatsoever to do with this government’s actions, ever, and it was a delusion to think otherwise. I felt at least a wee bit better when I stopped using this pronoun in 2000 after the Bush coup, and I feel MUCH better as I continue the practice now.

  204. 204
    Lisa says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: You are right. I am just upset and drinking the haterade. We have just gotten so ridiculous.

  205. 205
    Buck says:

    @geg6:

    Thanks for the link. Sorry I didn’t see that before.

  206. 206
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    You really are a fucking idiot.

    I never said tv was any source of facts. I simply showed you that the measly one hour a day he gets outside of complete and utter solitary confinement is when he is allowed to watch tv and, according to the Quantico people, is allowed to access news on that tv. There is no mention of him being allowed print information and, in fact, Quantico confirms that as true.

    Not my problem you can’t read and, apparently, even when you can, you can’t comprehend.

  207. 207
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck:

    I must have missed where “during the proscribed time he is permitted to watch television” was stated as one hour in GG’s update. You know this how?

    GG made the statement that Manning spends 23 hours of the day alone in a cell and is not allowed to watch news or current events programs in his hour outside “the hole”. Given that Villard stated that the one factual inaccuracy in GG’s report was that Manning is allowed to watch news programs, doesn’t that lead you to the conclusion that Glenn’s original statements about spending 23 hours a day in solitary were accurate. Or do you think that the military allows Manning to watch TV during those 23 hours when they don’t allow him to excersize or have a pillow or blanket?

  208. 208
    eemom says:

    If Manning got the crap beaten out of him by other inmate, Greenwald would be the first to complain about inadequate protection given to him.

    Or maybe Greenwald would take his case. THEN we could talk about cruel and unusual punishment. Tee hee.

  209. 209
    Stefan says:

    The court also found that prison officials should have been aware that the lack of adequate exercise, social isolation, lack of environmental stimulation and other deprivations imposed on the prisoners could be seriously harmful to their physical and mental health. *

    Could be seriously harmful. COULD be seriously harmful. Reading IS fundamental.

    By the same logic, if I say “throwing someone off a 30 foot overpass onto the interstate highway below could be harmful to their physical health” then, since it only COULD be harmful, it’s OK to actually do it.

  210. 210
    geg6 says:

    @Buck:

    You’re welcome. It helps to have facts. You’ll notice that they specify that confinement cannot be used to punish for crimes for which you have not been convicted.

  211. 211
    matoko_chan says:

    AMG did you stupid cudlips even SEE THIS?

    U.S. Air Force bans troops from reading The New York Times | http://is.gd/iNKMo
    about 1 hour ago via web

    Our government just forbid our soldiers from reading the New York Times.

  212. 212
    Lisa says:

    @Tim: But really, we are kind of responsible Tim. Because we continue to let them. WE are never going to leave the comfort of our warm living rooms to take up the pitchforks and torches and force the crooks out. We just furiously type in all caps on our computers about what assholes they are. We LET these crooks be unleashed upon the world and did nothing but maybe throw a few dollars at A.N.S.W.E.R. and go see that Michael Moore movie.

    You think the invaded European countries in WWII gave a shit that the people living under the regimes of the Axis powers were not the ones bombing the shit out of their neighbor countries? Hell no. The question to all of those indifferent citizens was “How could you have let it happen? What the fuck were you doing? Sleeping?”.

    Sorry, your Outraged Progressive card will not get you a pass. When the next country we invade gives us a well-deserved asskicking, you will be in the detention camp right along with the warmongering idiots at RedState and the Corner. No one will give two shits that you contributed to green party candidates and went to some antiwar marches.

  213. 213
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    I have no idea, at this point on anything Manning is or is not allowed to do. Including watching teevee. Which to me, can be a form of torture in itself. And more than one hour just that much more damaging. As I have already stated, I have no doubt he is being kept in isolation for safety reasons, by and large. And have stated when and if the details outlined by GG turn out to be true, then this is way wrong, and someone needs to be held accountable, including Obama. But am skeptical that all this shit is happening while Manning is allowed to watch teevee, even for an hour.

    Till then, I wonder about everything and anything I first read about on the blogs, or on teeeveeefuckingvee.

  214. 214
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @matoko_chan: One could argue that the Air Force does not have soldiers, so your statement is wrong.

  215. 215
    Buck says:

    @geg6:

    You’re absolutely right!

    @matoko_chan:

    I used to think our going to shit would be somewhat of a long and drawn out process, taking years to achieve. I see now that we can do it in just a matter of days.

  216. 216
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    You really are a fucking idiot.

    Well maybe, but trying to cipher your spastic commenting may have be an added factor.

  217. 217
    Lisa says:

    @General Stuck: Why are we arguing about how much teevee he gets to watch? Seriously? Who cares if he gets to watch a fucking Kardashians Marathon every evening…..the bottom line is we are locking a guy up for 23 hours a day, restricting his movements INSIDE OF HIS TINY LITTLE CELL, and are purposely trying to drive him bugfuck…..and we have not charged him with a goddamn thing. What have we become?

  218. 218
  219. 219
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    @Lisa:
    .
    .

    Sorry, but we were a nation of scumbag, morally lazy, fuckasses WAY before Obama.

    I didn’t mention President Obama, but I see your point – there has been no change.
    .
    .

  220. 220
    Mike M says:

    Many people in US jails and prisons, including celebrities, have been and are currently being held in solitary confinement. The term encompasses a range of treatments from simple isolation from the general prison population to the horrors of persistent torture experienced by certain accused terrorists in the US and political prisoners abroad. The practice of separating a prisoner from the general prison population, either for their own protection or as punishment, is not a new idea or a rare practice, but it can and does very in severity.

    I don’t consider Glenn Greenwald to be an authoritative source on the treatment of Pfc. Bradley Manning. I agree that if Manning is being subject to the extreme, punitive isolation that GG describes, then his treatment when extended for a long period amounts to torture. Certainly, Manning’s attorneys are familiar with his treatment, and one would think (naively perhaps) that they would be the first to object if he were being tortured.

    I am going to reserve judgment on this issue until I hear more from other sources with direct knowledge of Manning’s treatment. I am glad that GG raised the issue, but I’d like to see it investigated by cooler and more objective parties.

  221. 221
    geg6 says:

    @Tim:

    I do not agree with this sort of argument.

    Until and unless you (or I) pack up and move out, giving up your US citizenship along the way, you and I are both implicated in what our government has done in our name. In that, we and our “manifest destiny” are only marginally different from the German people Daniel Goldhagen describes in his book.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/H.....ecutioners

  222. 222
    General Stuck says:

    @Lisa:

    You need to read the entire comment thread. The issue arose in a GG update that his original assertion of Manning being kept sensory deprived from any outside news and such, turned out to be false. I don’t care who watches teevee, except when people use it for false evidence of torture by keeping someone deprived of sensory stimuli. It is a very important issue, therefore, relative to the topic of this thread.

  223. 223
    geg6 says:

    @Mike M:

    I’m no Greenwald apologist, but you did see that everything he said (with one small exception) was confirmed by a named Quantico official, right?

  224. 224
    Lisa says:

    @geg6: Word. That is what I was trying to say but I am inarticulate and coarse. Thank you.

  225. 225
    DickSpudCouchPotatoDetective says:

    @The Dangerman:

    No offense, but you are a real fuckhead.

  226. 226
    General Stuck says:

    What a stupid thread and I have contributed to it. I agree, if true, that this is torture treatment of a prisoner. But simply want to wait till some time and review of these allegations shakes out. I just do not have an appetite for GG’s particular flavor of Kool Aid, while quite a few others on this blog do, including the blog owner/ That is just not worth arguing about anymore, imo, so I am not going to.

  227. 227
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    I can’t even make sense of this statement.

    Are you saying that being allowed to watch tv (and televised news) during the one hour he gets to exercise, watch tv, shower, and any other thing you can only do outside of your cell is some sort of perk?

  228. 228
    Lisa says:

    @General Stuck: Ahhhh I see. When I read GG’s shit, I wait a day or so for someone to refute his massive exaggeration and then read his reply – somewhere in all that is the actual truth.

  229. 229
    geg6 says:

    @Lisa:

    No, you said it well. I was just backing you up.

  230. 230
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @geg6: That is rather damning, but, I have to say, I will feel better about commenting on this issue when there is a non-Greenwald source or confirmation of the allegations. Again, if true, this is horrific; I just want to be sure it is true before I go ballistic.

  231. 231
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    And I can’t even make sense on what you are trying to say.

    And I can’t explain myself any better than what I said in this comment you link to. So why don’t we just agree to coming from different planets, and call it a day?

  232. 232
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck:

    You need to read the entire comment thread. The issue arose in a GG update that his original assertion of Manning being kept sensory deprived from any outside news and such, turned out to be false. I don’t care who watches teevee, except when people use it for false evidence of torture by keeping someone deprived of sensory stimuli. It is a very important issue, therefore, relative to the topic of this thread.

    You seem to be reading too much into GG initial statement. It was that he (Manning) is being prevented from watching news and current events programming, not that he was being completely deprived of whatever sensory stimulation that TV provides.

  233. 233
    DickSpudCouchPotatoDetective says:

    Not sure it matters whether the man has been convicted of anything. Are we saying that if he is convicted of stealing papers, he can be treated cruelly and it’s okay? What, because these are (gasp) SECRET papers?

    We didn’t learn anything from the con of the Cold War, the con of the Vietnam war, or the con of the Iraq war? You can’t give government this kind of power. Period. Isn’t that the whole point?

  234. 234
    Hogan says:

    @General Stuck:

    The issue arose in a GG update that his original assertion of Manning being kept sensory deprived from any outside news and such, turned out to be false.

    1) It was denied by an official at Quantico. That’s not the same as “turned out to be false.”

    2) GG never refers to sensory deprivation, so that was not (and is quite a bit more inflammatory than) his original assertion.

    Ergo:

    3) What are you on about?

  235. 235

    “How much responsibility does the Obama admin have for this [inhumane treatment]?”

    All of it.

    One word by Obama could stop the inhumane treatment.

    Obama’s authoritarian torture apologists deserve a degree of blame as well.

    Obama’s complicity in criminal torture has devolved from refusing to prosecute criminal torturers to actively protecting war criminals to actively concealing evidence of war crimes.

    Now Obama’s Executive branch is using what torture victim John McCain called “an awful thing” that “crushes your spirit.”

    Sick enough by itself, but sicker still as there hasn’t even been a trial.

  236. 236
    geg6 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Well, I’m guessing he wouldn’t go with the guy’s name and this update if he didn’t have most of the facts right:

    I was contacted by Lt. (Brian, referenced earlier in the article as a Quantico brig official) Villiard, who claims there is one factual inaccuracy in what I wrote: specifically, he claims that Manning is not restricted from accessing news or current events during the proscribed time he is permitted to watch television. That is squarely inconsistent with reports from those with first-hand knowledge of Manning’s detention, but it’s a fairly minor dispute in the scheme of things.

    The part in parentheses was added by me for clarification.

  237. 237
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @geg6: As I said, that was rather damning. I am not arguing with you here. I am just not ready to jump in with both feet without more evidence or independent confirmation; that’s all.

  238. 238
    MattR says:

    @DickSpudCouchPotatoDetective:

    Not sure it matters whether the man has been convicted of anything. Are we saying that if he is convicted of stealing papers, he can be treated cruelly and it’s okay? What, because these are (gasp) SECRET papers?

    I largely agree with what you are saying, but there are those who would argue that prison should be a punishment beyond just a lack of freedom for the inmates and therefore some degree of additional punative measures is acceptable. However, I think that those people would agree that our justice system should be allowed to take its course and determine guilt before imposing those punitive measures.

    (I am just trying to answer the question of why his lack of conviction might matter to some. Not trying to make any judgements about what kind of punative measures might be appropriate for those who are convicted or where the treatment of Manning would fall on that scale)

  239. 239
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR: @MattR:

    You seem to be reading too much into GG initial statement. It was that he is being prevented from watching news and current events programming, not that he was being completely deprived of whatever sensory stimulation that TV provides.

    It is quintessential Greewald tactic, to not include his statement of being denied access to news

    For the one hour per day when he is freed from this isolation, he is barred from accessing any news or current events programs.

    There is no qualifier as to what happens during this one hour, whether teevee is watched or not, but just that he can’t access news or events, suggesting sensory deprivation of what most people would consider being attached to the world. Why didn’t his source confirm what he does during that one hour? because it would water down GG’s intended projection of the worst. This is one reason I have no time for Greenwald’s bullshit. Everything he writes, is focused and directed toward a pre determined conclusion he wants to impart on his readers. He doesn’t outright lie, usually, but is misleading on a regular basis.

    And as for Greenwald’s update concerning Gen Villard confirming GG story, and only the minor detail about watching teevee and news, it is belied by GG own writings in the main article.

    Lt. Villiard protested that the conditions are not “like jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole,” but confirmed that he is in solitary confinement, entirely alone in his cell except for the one hour per day he is taken out.

    This is standard for solitary confinement, throughout the country, and it sounds like to me, the General is disputing this articles details of torturous treatment, before any alleged update. So I will wait to hear directly from the military, their side of the story.

  240. 240
    geg6 says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I’m not arguing, either. But I find it pretty damning that the only thing the guy could say was wrong was that he does so get to watch the news when he watches tv, so there!

    I don’t know why I get so upset about this kind of stuff any more. It’s not I didn’t know a long time ago that this country wasn’t anything like it is billed. I guess I fell into that whole silly idea that Democrats would be just a bit better than W and Darth. And, I guess, they are, but it’s such a microscopic difference that I’m sick over it.

  241. 241
    General Stuck says:

    @Hogan:

    It continues to amaze me the lengths GG’s supporters will go to defend him. Woe to be, if those energies were directed toward, say, a dem president. Where such vigorous support might actually matter, rather than a blogger on the internet.

  242. 242
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @geg6:

    I guess I fell into that whole silly idea that Democrats would be just a bit better than W and Darth. And, I guess, they are, but it’s such a microscopic difference that I’m sick over it.

    They are. Quite possibly not in this case, but on a lot of fronts they are trying to go the right way; the Republicans aren’t.

  243. 243
    General Stuck says:

    @Hogan:

    1) It was denied by an official at Quantico. That’s not the same as “turned out to be false.”

    Yes, and the same standard should apply to Greenwald’s allegation then. Dontcha think? till we get more info.

  244. 244
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    And then tells GG that he only got one fact incorrect, that he’s allowed to watch tv news during that one hour he’s out of his cell.

    As for what happens during that one hour, it’s as I told you above. He can watch some tv, he can shower, he can exercise, he can see a doctor if needed. That’s about it. If you knew anything at all about prisons, you’d know this and wouldn’t have to have it spelled out for you. Typical solitary allows sheets, pillows, reading materials, even letters and writing materials. Only Supermax solitary is like this. Do some research.

  245. 245

    […] John Cole captures the troubling sadism that this country has reverted to in the face of a terrorist threat and, predictably, how this warped mindset has begun to pervert the entire criminal justice system – not just the system putatively reserved for a certain class of supsects (not that such selectivity provides an excuse or justification): There is absolutely no reason for this whatsoever, other than the fact that the United States has morphed into a brutal and repressive regime that is terrified of dissent. The only difference between this treatment and what we imagine third world nations do is that we have cleaner and more modern facilities. Hell, at this point Manning would probably welcome physical torture- it would be a welcome diversion. […]

  246. 246
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck:

    There is no qualifier as to what happens during this one hour, whether teevee is watched or not, but just that he can’t access news or events, suggesting sensory deprivation of what most people would consider being attached to the world. Why didn’t his source confirm what he does during that one hour? because it would water down GG’s intended projection of the worst.

    I will agree that not allowing him to watch news or current events would be intended to isolate him from the world (or from news about his alleged crimes). But that detail is a minor part of the isolation and its veracity does not change the treatment that Manning receives for the rest of the day. In fact, there is nothing that Manning could be allowed to do during that 1 hour that would mitigate his conditions for those other 23 hours.

    (EDIT: I would add that Villard’s initial comment was contesting the characterization of Manning’s treatment as being horrific (ie. like a jailhouse movie), not contesting the actual conditions being described)

  247. 247
    Nutella says:

    The Manning case is one of many examples lately where getting arrested or just getting stopped leads directly to punishment. Investigation, charges, trials, convictions: all frills that we just don’t bother with any more.

  248. 248
    Hogan says:

    @General Stuck: Yes, that’s what I think. I also think we shouldn’t exaggerate GG’s actual allegations and then accuse him of exaggeration based on that. What do ya think about that?

  249. 249
    General Stuck says:

    @geg6:

    Typical solitary allows sheets, pillows, reading materials, even letters and writing materials. Only Supermax solitary is like this. Do some research.

    Yes, but my point is you are making conclusions from unsourced allegations from a blogger. And I bet donuts to dollars they came from Mr. Manning’s attorneys.

    If you read my comment, all of it you link to, you would see that Villard pretty much disputed GG;s article and it’s details that don’t match up with standard treatment for solitary in this country. Now the question of is that solitary cruel and unusual treatment, is another topic. That I would learn toward it being such, in many cases around the country, but in others likely not.

  250. 250
    General Stuck says:

    @Hogan:

    Yes, that’s what I think. I also think we shouldn’t exaggerate GG’s actual allegations and then accuse him of exaggeration based on that. What do ya think about that?

    That’s fine with me. We are all full of shit here, Greenwald, Cole, Me, and you, among others. I like it when are all in the same little love boat, it is an intimate and fulfilling experience, only found on the blogs. What do ya think about that?

  251. 251
    Blogasita says:

    Where the fuck is Obama? He’s the God-damned Commander-in-Chief. Can that guy show any balls at all?

  252. 252
    Svensker says:

    @retr2327:

    Yes, exactly this. Manning could be a sadistic baby-torturer who has caused the deaths of millions and has been convicted of same and it would still be wrong for the State to treat him badly. That’s the whole idea of the Rule of Law rather than of Men.

  253. 253
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck:

    If you read my comment, all of it you link to, you would see that Villard pretty much disputed GG;s article and it’s details that don’t match up with standard treatment for solitary in this country.

    So just to be clear, are you calling GG a liar when he says that Villard contacted him to say that the one factual inaccuracy in the original article (which included the exersize and pillow details) was that Manning is allowed to watch news and current event programs in his one hour outside of solitary every day? Because the options are that GG is lying about his update or that Villard is not contesting the other details of his confinement that GG described. (EDIT: I guess a third option is that GG was wrong about multiple details but that Villiard ignored all the others, focused on the TV aspect and told GG that was the only mistake. But that just seems silly)

  254. 254
    AxelFoley says:

    @The Dangerman:

    I’m sorry, but if you’re in the military and you pull shit like this, I could hardly care less. Fuck him.
    Speaking of which, that Military Doctor that wouldn’t go to Afghanistan because he personally didn’t see Obama’s birth certificate took it up the ass in his court martial. After nearly two decades in the Service, I hope he loses all his benes and retirement. Fuck him, too.
    Edit: He’s a “whistleblower” my ass. What did he “whistleblow”? That Hillary said bad things about her diplomatic partners? That North Korea was jonesing for Clapton? Give me a break.

    Pretty much this.

  255. 255
    geg6 says:

    @General Stuck:

    If you’re talking about what you quoted from me being about something I took from someone else or GG or whomever, you couldn’t be more wrong.

    I was a volunteer, for many years, for the the PA Dept. of Corrections. I even received their 2000 Volunteer of the Year Award. I know of what I speak in regard to prisons and how they work. I’ve been there. Have you?

  256. 256
    Cris says:

    @Ash Can: rosy-cheeked private

    Yeah okay. I kind of glossed over that, twice.

  257. 257
    AxelFoley says:

    @Blogasita:

    Where the fuck is Obama? He’s the God-damned Commander-in-Chief. Can that guy show any balls at all?

    Oh, fuck you and your mama, bitch.

  258. 258
    John Cole says:

    This thread sucks.

  259. 259
    Hob says:

    @General Stuck: Actually, unless Greenwald is totally lying in his update (which I didn’t see before), the Quantico brig official only disputed one fact: the prohibition on watching TV news. Assuming he actually read Greenwald’s article, then I’d say that counts as confirmation of the rest.

    Villiard did not argue with anything else Greenwald wrote, except to say that “the conditions are not ‘like jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole.'” That doesn’t really tell us anything– I mean, Supermax conditions aren’t like jail movies either, they’re worse. He said Manning is alone in his cell for 23 hours a day, and that number may not be unusual, but other prisoners in solitary aren’t “barred even from exercising” during that time– and just that one thing is a pretty big deal, because it sure sounds like a rule whose only purpose would be to maximize the damage to the prisoner’s physical and mental health.

    I’m not sure why you think it’s so important that the allegations come from Manning’s lawyer or other people who are on his side. That’s pretty much the only way anyone ever finds out about how a prisoner is being treated. Do you expect the prison guards to be reporting this stuff spontaneously? But no matter who reported it, if the officials have responded to the article and didn’t deny it, then I have no reason to disbelieve it.

    So as far as I’m concerned (and I should’ve read the article more carefully the first time), the question isn’t “should we believe this” now, it’s “is this acceptable and if not, what are we doing about it?”

  260. 260
    Jrod the Cookie Thief says:

    @MattR: It’s the fourth option: Glenn Greenwald is evil incarnate, and if he says something, it can’t be true; and if at some later point it’s shown by other sources that Greenwald was, in fact, telling the truth, why that’s only more evidence of the man’s despicable vileness.

    Guy being tortured? Meh, who cares. Gotta stay focused on the real danger to our country: everybody to the left of General Stuck, the pure arbiter of what is right and just.

    GRRRREEEEEEEENNNNNNWWWAAAAAAALLLLLLLD!!!!!

  261. 261
    MattR says:

    @John Cole: I think it’s gone from suck to blow.

  262. 262
    Jrod the Cookie Thief says:

    @AxelFoley: Yeah, this! Who cares if he’s being tortured? Torture is the American way, and only pussies and faggots would say otherwise.

    With us or against us!

    America is over. The good guys lost. The only consolation for me from this fact is that assholes like Dangerman and Axel will be getting the same treatment as the rest of us.

  263. 263
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    Well, hell. Where have you been on this blog? I’ve been calling Greenwald a liar for a long time, and in this case, it is obvious to me, that he wrote this article just as mendaciously as he does most. Some info left out, others tweaked, and arranged, To leave an impression he wants to leave, cobbled together with just enough info to make it plausible to his, hungry for red meat minions, to be fed to keep his scorched earth liberatarian fantasies and movement, or whatever, alive by painting the evil US government with whatever bullshit that happens to be available. Sometimes it is evil, the US government, and sometimes it’s not. Depending on the entirety of the facts, all of them, and when they finally emerge, then I will form my opinions.

    AND WITHOUT NAMING HIS SOURCE

  264. 264
  265. 265
    General Stuck says:

    @John Cole:

    This thread sucks.

    You are correct, and I have some blame with that. So I will shut up.

    I cannot add anything more to explaining my position on this, and will do my part to tamp down the flame wars on this blog.

  266. 266
    burnspbesq says:

    @Kryptik:

    “Fuck all. We really are a rotten fucking country.”

    You have two options. Work to fix it, or leave. Choose.

  267. 267
    retr2327 says:

    I can understand a certain amount of skepticism re: Greenwald’s agenda and arguments: I admire the intensity and conviction with which he pursues his ideals without necessarily wanting to be subjected to his harangues on a regular basis. And I also agree that he presents his facts — which is not the same as making them up — so as to support his argument, as any skilled attorney would.

    Nonetheless, I also find he tends to be much more diligent than most on the internent or in the MSM in providing linked sources for most, if not all, factual assertions, and is also much better than most at making corrections and admitting error if any facts are subsequently disproved or otherwise negated.

    Military spokesmen, on the other hand, have a long and unfortunate history of exaggerating, concealing, and/or flat-out lying in support of the mission (see, e.g., Pvt. Lynch rescue; Tillman hostile fire; etc., etc.). So if you’re awaiting official confirmation that the military is mistreating this schmuck, your citizenship in the RBC is doubtful, to put it kindly.

  268. 268
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck: I know how you feel about GG. I am asking about the update to this specific post. It seems pretty straightforward without much room for spinning. So Glenn is either straight up lying or he is not. Which is it? Or how exactly is GG manipulating the actual truth if you think my choices are too extreme?

    I was contacted by Lt. Villiard, who claims there is one factual inaccuracy in what I wrote: specifically, he claims that Manning is not restricted from accessing news or current events during the proscribed time he is permitted to watch television. That is squarely inconsistent with reports from those with first-hand knowledge of Manning’s detention, but it’s a fairly minor dispute in the scheme of things.

    (EDIT: The point I am trying to make is that if you think GG will straight out lie in his update then it is a waste of time on both sides trying to debate claims that he makes. Just like I would never bother getting into an argument arguing the details of a Fox News story if there were no other sources to check)

  269. 269
    Gus says:

    @The Dangerman: You’re a fucking asshole. Period.

  270. 270
    WyldPirate says:

    @General Stuck:

    AND WITHOUT NAMING HIS SOURCE

    Of course, Stuck. When one reads the Greenwald piece, the name Lt. Villard isn’t a source and his conclusions based upon the comparison of the situation of Manning at Quantico, to other things like other prison operations, laws, etc along with all of those other things called hyperlinks he references are not “sources”.

    Right. Gotcha.

    Only in the land of General Stuck of Dumbfuckistan.

  271. 271
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    I am not saying he is lying about this update, but that in the body of the article, he also quotes Villard that doesn’t make any sense, compared with the alleged update.

    Lt. Villiard protested that the conditions are not “like jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole,” but confirmed that he is in solitary confinement, entirely alone in his cell except for the one hour per day he is taken out.

    It seems to me, the general is asserting a pretty standard solitary confinement for Manning, which is contradictory to the update quote where GG says the the General is confirming everything but the watching news thing. The entire article seems like a lot of contrived mishmash to me, but what do I know.

    I mean when were these interviews done with Villard, were they separate, do they include everything he said. Which is highly doubtful. And again, if true, someones needs to be held accountable. I just don’t know right now, what the facts are, is all I’m saying.

  272. 272

    Authoritarian thuggishness in one sentence:

    “Too true, that’s damn cruel, but he’s been charged with serious crimes.”

    Evil:

    A willingness to use “damn cruel” practices.

    Beyond evil:

    A willingness to use “damn cruel” practices on someone who hasn’t been convicted of a crime.

  273. 273
    burnspbesq says:

    @Scanner Lightly:

    Way to be deliberately obtuse.

    No one except Dangerman is disputing that solitary confinement for extended periods of time can rise to the level of torture.

    Stuck’s point was that Greenwald, whatever you may think of him as a pundit, is a piss-poor reporter if he can’t get anyone to go on the record saying that yes, these are the conditions under which Manning is being confined at the present time. Unless his military lawyers are under a direct order from a superior officer not to disclose that information, they are doing their client a disservice by not talking about this to anyone who will listen. And although I am far from expert on the law governing lawyers in uniform, I would be surprised to learn that such an order would be considered lawful. And if it is, you do one of two things: you make what’s known as a “noisy withdrawal,” or you resign you commission and go straight to the Washington bureau of the Times.

  274. 274
    monkeyboy says:

    Up until fairly modern times, one use of torture was to demoralize whoever is part of the group the person is tortured from. Not as an example of what may be in store for them if they caught but as a proof that their God or Gods are ineffective weaklings compared to the God(s) of the torturers.

    It used to be that many a leader claimed that part of his right to lead was that it was God(s) will – that if God(s) did not approve of his leadership position then he wouldn’t be in it. As part of this leadership aura, many a leader was claimed to perform miracles through which demonstrated their closeness to and favor by God(s). For example, numerous miracles were attributed to Julius Caesar.

    In Rome, when an important enemy leader was captured, he was thrown into a miserable prison and barely kept alive for months. Then there was an official ceremony where the filthy haggard prisoner was paraded around the city for all to see and then executed – thus demonstrating that the God(s) the prisoner thought he derived his power from were pitifully inadequate.

    I wonder how much of the USA’s current torture of Muslims and others is still in this mindset – “since your religion or other beliefs can’t protect you they must be false. Just where is your God Now?”

  275. 275
  276. 276
    WyldPirate says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Stuck’s point was that Greenwald, whatever you may think of him as a pundit, is a piss-poor reporter if he can’t get anyone to go on the record saying that yes, these are the conditions under which Manning is being confined at the present time.

    From Greenwald’s article:

    Interviews with several people directly familiar with the conditions of Manning’s detention, ultimately including a Quantico brig official (Lt. Brian Villiard) who confirmed much of what they conveyed, establishes that the accused leaker is subjected to detention conditions likely to create long-term psychological injuries.

    Looks like a non-confirmation confirmation, to me.

    Not trying to raise a stink, but why is it wrong for Greenwald to respect requests of confidentiality? He is acting as a journalist in this piece–he is doing original reporting on a current event– and he is paid as one by Salon.

    Frankly, given the behavior by the US government on this matter, I can see why people might be intimidated about going on record.

  277. 277
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck:

    It seems to me, the general is asserting a pretty standard solitary confinement for Manning, which is contradictory to the update quote where GG says the the General is confirming everything but the watching news thing.

    (Minor detail but it is actually Lt Brian Villiard who is the military spokesman)

    I am a bit surprised that you are confused by this. I see no contradiction between GG’s claims and Villiard’s statement which is typical PR speak – don’t refute the facts (because they are accurate) but instead try and spin the characterization that are portrayed. Notice that Villiard did not actually mention that Manning’s solitary was standard, but instead compared it with a strawman image that was worse than what GG was portraying. When someone thinks of “jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole”, they think of dank, dark, tiny, squalid conditions with some kind of gruel like substance being served on the flimsiest tin pan with no silverware. It is very likely that Manning is not being treated like that while at the same time he is being treated differently from standard solitary confinement.

  278. 278
    eemom says:

    That means they have read what Glenn said, and found one error, and corrected it. That would suggest to most people with at least one functioning synapse that, horror of horrors, Glenn’s piece is ACCURATE.
    And yes manic progressives in the comments, this is on Obama. If we know about his, so does he, and he could stop it. It’s a goddamned disgrace. I didn’t realize I need to point this out explicitly, because Obama is, after all, the President and Commander-in-Chief. I sort of assumed you dullards knew this.

    Dunno, maybe it’s just me, but……I kind of get the feeling John is losing patience with us.

  279. 279
    burnspbesq says:

    @WyldPirate:

    You did notice, I assume, that the language you bolded was not in Greenwald’s original post which was the subject of Stuck’s original comment? Greenwald ejaculated premaurely; he hit “post” before he had the story nailed down. Maybe that’s just sloppy, but Greenwald can’t call others out for that and expect to not be called when he does it.

    But you and I are most likely in agreement (zounds!) on what really matters here: if Manning is being treated as Greenwald alleges, it has to stop right the fuck now.

  280. 280
    Jay B. says:

    This might be the quintessential Balloon Juice thread. But still, even with a gag-inducing amount of torture apologetics and a full Greenwaldian hate fest, my favorite is this:

    I’d like to see Manning roll over on Assange

    Yeah, blow the whistle on that Assange guy (about something), but State murders should stay secret, Pvt. Manning!

    A perfect, brilliant example of the complete moral bankruptcy of America. Bootlicking fuck.

  281. 281
    eemom says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Greenwald ejaculated premaurely;

    you did that on purpose in order to ruin my dinner, didn’t you?

  282. 282
    burnspbesq says:

    @Jay B.:

    This seems to be the day for morons to stop reading halfway through comments and thereby miss the point. You’re welcome to try again.

  283. 283
    burnspbesq says:

    @eemom:

    Yup. How’d I do?

  284. 284

    If you go by what Jonathan Pollard is saying here:

    http://www.facebook.com/topic......8;topic=44

    For the past 12 years Pollard has been incarcerated in Butner Federal Prison in North Carolina. He was transferred to Butner from Marion Federal Prison in Illinois where he was held in a subterranean cell in solitary confinement for seven years. Pollard’s treatment, like his life sentence, is unprecedented in the history of US espionage investigations.

    Never has a spy in the employ of a friendly country received such a sentence. On average, spies working for countries considered US allies receive between 4-7 years in jail. Aldrich Ames, the most notorious spy in recent history, who as head of the CIA counter-intelligence department compromised all US intelligence emanating from the Soviet Union for over 15 years and caused the death of more than 10 US agents operating in the Soviet Union – while sentenced to life in prison – was never placed in solitary confinement for stretches comparable to Pollard.

    I went to see Jonathan Pollard last week. During a two-and-a-half-hour meeting, we spoke at length about his espionage, the conditions of his imprisonment, his feelings toward the US, Israel, the Jewish people and his hopes for the future. Pollard is now 50 years old. He grew up in South Bend, Indiana. He studied political science, economics and classics at Stanford University and was studying towards a doctorate in military history at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts when he was recruited in 1979 by Naval Intelligence. Pollard first visited Israel in 1971 for a summer program at the Weitzman Institute.

    He refers to his Jewish background as “modern-Orthodox, American style. The centrality of Israel for the Jewish people was emphasized.” “I had thought constantly about aliya,” he says, “But it’s hard to pick up and leave the ‘Golden Medina.’ My parents are proud Americans. My father is a decorated Army officer. He carries a copy of the US Constitution in his pocket. But when I joined Naval Intelligence my father warned me that it’s not a good place for a Jew. There is a lot of anti-Semitism there. But even when I saw it, I thought it would be better for me to stay.”

    I’m not sure how to put this, but Pollard doesn’t really strike me as being brain-damaged and insane after his seven years in solitary–so what gives?

    Just saying, sir.

  285. 285
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    I will say it again, one more time. I do not think that GG is reporting the Lt’s statement in full, and until I hear that, or one from the military, yes, my default position from the past two years on GG’s writings causes me to consider what he writes a lie, until proven otherwise. It may be a lie by omission, and often is, but a lie just the same.

  286. 286

    “It’s almost as if continuously capitulating to compromising with sociopathic right-wingers leads to continuously worsening consequences for society.”

    “… No one could have anticipated…”

  287. 287
    General Stuck says:

    For Christ’s sake, people. I simply am astounded at the lengths some of you will go to excuse this. “But I don’t like or trust Glenn Greenwald!” Who gives a shit if you don’t like him or trust him, try looking at the damned links he provides?

    Well, I looked for them. The ones where he got his original information from, and they seem to be missing. Please point them out. As for the update of the general confirming everything but the teevee news watching, I will believe it when I see a full statement from the LT. Maybe you should wait till we and you get some facts before throwing up a half ass blog report that those of us with some actual synapses working, are going to poke around in and dispute, whether they be from GG or not.

    just sayin” boss

  288. 288
    WyldPirate says:

    @burnspbesq:

    You did notice, I assume, that the language you bolded was not in Greenwald’s original post which was the subject of Stuck’s original comment?

    The language I bolded was taken from the first paragraph of Greenwald’s piece and not from the updated portion at the bottom of the page in which the Quantico spokesperson disputed one of Greenwald’s points re: Manning’s treatment in custody.

    Here is what @General Stuck’s comment no. 30 on the matter was. I’m not sure that is the one you were referring to:

    Without links of sourcing, I wouldn’t believe what Glenn Greenwald told me for about any reason. If it is true, then it is true, and very poor treatment of Mr. Manning. But basing it on “interviews” with people “directly familiar” on GG’s say so screams out polemic bullshit to me.

    .

    First, most people had a case of the ass at Stuck–including Cole–for denying that there was sourcing. There was “indirect” confirmation from a Quantico spokesperson who failed (assuming that Greenwald is not fabricating–a benefit which I will grant him because he is, if anything, meticulous and makes retractions if necessary) to deny the conditions under which Manning was held. I simply can’t imagine Greenwald NOT asking the Quantico spokesman about the conditions under which Manning was held that he seems to have gotten from sources that wished to remain anonymous. Lt. Villiard seems to have affirmed many of the “conditions” of the incarceration and he certainly doesn’t seem to have denied any but one (in the update by Greenwald).

    But you and I are most likely in agreement (zounds!) on what really matters here: if Manning is being treated as Greenwald alleges, it has to stop right the fuck now.

    Of course we are. It’s bullshit that he is being held in this manner if true and it should stop ASAP.

    I think we are in agreement on more issues than you might imagine.

  289. 289
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck: This doesn’t really respond to what I was talking about. You said:

    I am not saying he is lying about this update, but that in the body of the article, he also quotes Villard that doesn’t make any sense, compared with the alleged update.

    Lt. Villiard protested that the conditions are not “like jail movies where someone gets thrown into the hole,” but confirmed that he is in solitary confinement, entirely alone in his cell except for the one hour per day he is taken out.

    It seems to me, the general is asserting a pretty standard solitary confinement for Manning, which is contradictory to the update quote where GG says the the General is confirming everything but the watching news thing. The entire article seems like a lot of contrived mishmash to me, but what do I know.

    My response was simply that the two statements were not actually contradictory. It may be true that GG twisted Villiard’s words (in either the initial or subsequent conversation) and maybe we need to wait for the long form of the interview transcript before we can be sure, but either way that does not change my response to your claim that those two statements did not make sense together as written.

    @WyldPirate: That does not count because it is GG’s reporting. Stuck will need a source completely independent of Glenn.

  290. 290
    WyldPirate says:

    @General Stuck:

    Well, I looked for them. The ones where he got his original information from, and they seem to be missing. Please point them out.

    Ahh. Playing the “I didn’t see it” game again, huh?

    Interviews with several people directly familiar with the conditions of Manning’s detention, ultimately including a Quantico brig official (Lt. Brian Villiard) who confirmed much of what they conveyed, establishes that the accused leaker is subjected to detention conditions likely to create long-term psychological injuries.

    First paragraph of Greenwald’s piece, Stuck.

    Reading is fundamental.

  291. 291
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    That does not count because it is GG’s reporting. Stuck will need a source completely independent of Glenn.

    Are you the least bit aware of the smarmy bullshit you write. First of all, I don’t believe any goddamn blogger, until it’s verified. Secondly, this piece of shit report by GG wouldn’t make it past the first editor at any respectable news org. And Glenn Greenwald is basically accusing the US military of what amounts to torturing a prisoner.

    I mean, first GG says that Lt Villiard confirms “much” of what GG alleges. What the fuck does “much” mean. Then he quotes, but doesn’t really quote the Lt. confirming all of it, except a key piece about getting to watch the news on teevee, I guess in between all the other evil shit the military was doing to him.

    edit = and Greenwald doesn’t bother to even generally categorize, let alone name his original source for this info. Which is what I am talking about using anonymous sourcing, not the half ass claims of verification from Villiard.

  292. 292
    General Stuck says:

    @WyldPirate:

    Go die in a fire,

  293. 293
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck: First off, what the fuck does “verified” mean in your world? Second off, where can we find one of those respected news orgs? And then finally, do you think the US military has never tortured a single prisoner? Why is it OK to accuse the military of torturing some Iragi or Afghani picked up of the streets but accusing them of torturing a member of the US military who many have accused of treason is out of bounds?

  294. 294
    HyperIon says:

    I love it when Cole attacks his commenters.
    It is so much more effective than when I attack them.

  295. 295
    General Stuck says:

    @HyperIon:

    You just love pain, preferably someone elses.

  296. 296
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    Round up them strawmen and make a nice xmas dec for your self. Greenwald worship makes me cranky, I am done here on this thread, hopefully.

  297. 297
    Uncle Clarence Thomas says:

    @Norman Rogers:
    .
    .

    I’m not sure how to put this, but Pollard doesn’t really strike me as being brain-damaged and insane after his seven years in solitary—so what gives?
    Just saying, sir.

    He had a criminal conviction – and a pillow.

    Just saying, mofuk.
    .
    .

  298. 298

    Ultimately the questions are:

    Are the allegations of extended solitary confinement true?

    Discovering whether the allegations are true or false is easy.

    Quibbling about this point is simply a distraction.

    Does extended solitary confinement constitute torture?

    Medical evidence clearly and extensively confirms that extended solitary confinement constitutes torture.

    If it is torture, why isn’t that torture being treated as criminal as required by law?

    Some support torturing. Others make excuses about torture. Still others use distractions to avoid investigating criminal actions.

    And some are just authoritarians who are unwilling to hold the elite to the same legal standards that they would hold the non-elite.

    There are many that condemn torture and want it prosecuted as criminal, but they have been ridiculed and ignored for over six years now.

  299. 299
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck: There is not a single strawman in the bunch (though there is plenty of snark). Each one relates directly to something you said in the comment I was replying to.

    GS:First of all, I don’t believe any goddamn blogger, until it’s verified.
    me:First off, what the fuck does “verified” mean in your world?

    GS:Secondly, this piece of shit report by GG wouldn’t make it past the first editor at any respectable news org.
    me:Second off, where can we find one of those respected news orgs?

    GS:And Glenn Greenwald is basically accusing the US military of what amounts to torturing a prisoner.
    me:And then finally, do you think the US military has never tortured a single prisoner? Why is it OK to accuse the military of torturing some Iragi or Afghani picked up of the streets but accusing them of torturing a member of the US military who many have accused of treason is out of bounds?

    I have to add that pointing out the excesses of a self proclaimed Greenwald hater is not quite the same as Greenwald worship. But then again, on this blog I am not surprised to see disagreement with someone’s POV get conflated to mean a mindless belief in the exact opposite POV.

  300. 300
    WyldPirate says:

    @General Stuck:

    I am done here on this thread, hopefully.

    Not only that, but smoked, burnt to a crisp, pwned, embarrassed and basically vaporized by multiple Klingon death rays come to mind as fitting descriptors as well.

    For FSM sake, Stuck. You seem to lack the self-awareness to realize that you are getting chewed up and spit out by about a half-dozen people on this thread including Cole who posted an update that all but called you out by name.

    Jeez, dude. It’s OK to say that “maybe I’m wrong”. People do make errors, ya know.

  301. 301
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    They are strawmen that you throw up because we are talking about a single instance of a high visibility prisoner allegedly being mis treated by the US Military under Obama’s command. The facts surrounding these accusations have exactly zilch to do with anything else, whether that be the past or general concerns about the US detention policies.

    And if I have to define to you what “verified” means, then there is likely no point in saying anything to you. And your blanket condemnations of ALL news organizations is just more dogmatic bullshit. There are a number of first rate reporters, usually at newspapers around the country, who specialize in this sort of thing, around national defense. Like James Risen, Dana Priest, and others, who I trust a hell of a lot more than a blogger.

    But I get it. This is a wanker thread, to emo on evil American government and military, and facts and shit just get in the way of a good wankfest. My bad. I am trying to leave but you just keep pulling me back in.

  302. 302
    General Stuck says:

    @WyldPirate:

    gawd you are dumb

  303. 303
    Mark S. says:

    I haven’t read this entire thread, but Jesus, if you don’t think this is cruel and unusual punishment you are a fucking fascist.

    And I love how people have no trouble with unnamed sources when it’s against someone they don’t like all the sudden getting all high and mighty about it when it could possibly make their own side look bad. Yes, sometimes anonymous sources are bullshit and they should be taken with a grain of salt, but if the only thing you ever believe is what comes out of named, official sources, you’ll never know much of anything.

  304. 304
    Lisa says:

    @geg6: Thanks!

  305. 305
    WyldPirate says:

    @General Stuck:

    But I get it. This is a wanker thread, to emo on evil American government and military, and facts and shit just get in the way of a good wankfest. My bad. I am trying to leave but you just keep pulling me back in.

    Funny, Stuck. You seem to be the only one with their dick in hand who is insisting on slinging spooge all over the place.

  306. 306
    Donald Johnson says:

    What’s under dispute here? It’s no secret Manning is in solitary confinement–the NYT reported this months ago.

    link

  307. 307
    Corner Stone says:

    I didn’t realize I need to point this out explicitly, because Obama is, after all, the President and Commander-in-Chief.

    Actually, for this crowd, you do need to fucking point it out explicitly.
    Because there’s a ton of shit that you pre-empt and wank off on by saying, “I’m sure this is *somehow* Obama’s fault!”
    So yeah motherfucker, you got to give your sheeple here a fucking clue as to when they can safely speak the truth.
    You dumb fucking cudlip.

  308. 308
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mark S.:

    if you don’t think this is cruel and unusual punishment you are a fucking fascist.

    We’re well past the point of agreeing to the fact that Stuck is a fascist.

  309. 309
    Corner Stone says:

    @General Stuck: Man. Look around for some band aids. Because you are cut and bleeding all over the fucking joint.

  310. 310
    General Stuck says:

    @Corner Stone:

    We’re well past the point of agreeing to the fact that Stuck is a fascist.

    Lmao

    Teehee. So I’m a fascist for critiquing Greenwald’s musings.

    That pretty much is the cherry on top this sorry thread.

    But I meant to be known as a liberal fascist, if that’s okay with you Von Corner Stone.

  311. 311
    General Stuck says:

    @Corner Stone:

    You dumbasses couldn’t cut your way out of a clown sack.

  312. 312
    Ash says:

    If Manning goes down in history as a saviour of transparent democratic societies > We may just be saved.

    If he goes down in history as a traitor > it won’t be a nice place for 95% of people on the planet.

    Good luck Bradley Manning, thank you for trying.

  313. 313
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jay B.:

    A perfect, brilliant example of the complete moral bankruptcy of America. Bootlicking fuck.

    If there’s anyone here who more perfectly molds into this description than burnspbesq, I am unable to find them.

  314. 314
    Hob says:

    BTW, if it matters to anyone, Greenwald clarified his update a little in the comments section (which I would now like a cookie for having waded through).

    At 5:44 PM Eastern, he wrote:

    I spoke with Villiard this morning. He said he was “disappointed” in my article. I asked him if there were any factually inaccurate statements. At first he said no – that nothing requires a correction. Then he said: actually there is one. And he cited the TV issue. So I noted it immediately as I told him I would.

    He also stated explicitly that he, Greenwald, has been speaking to Manning’s private counsel. And he already cited the other person (House) who’s been authorized to visit Manning, specifically as a source for the one claim about TV news restriction. So there’s really no mystery about who the sources are, and I don’t know why Stuck is insisting that Greenwald is being cagey about that.

    Also, Brian Villiard is a spokesman (or public affairs officer – I’ve found news stories describing him with either title) for the Quantico base. His job is to deal with the press. If he knew that Greenwald’s claims were false or could even be plausibly denied, and yet he told Greenwald that there was only one factual error in the article, then he is the worst spokesman in the world. And if he didn’t say any such thing, but Greenwald published it in a very widely read column and cited him by name, and Villiard does not start immediately (or very soon) trumpeting to the world that this was bullshit, then he is the worst soon-to-be-ex-spokesman in the world.

  315. 315
    Corner Stone says:

    @General Stuck: Is this where you tell me to meet you in Silver City? Tough guy.

  316. 316
    Corner Stone says:

    @General Stuck: People here can read you thrashing about. No interpretation needed.
    Pathetic.

  317. 317
    General Stuck says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Dude, you are the one that brought cutting and bleeding into the conversation. And if I wanted to meet a clown, I would go to the circus.

  318. 318
    General Stuck says:

    @General Stuck:

    And if I wanted to meet a clown, I would go to the circus.

    On second thought, I could already be at the circus.

  319. 319
    General Stuck says:

    People here can read you thrashing about.

    I doubt half the people on this thread CAN read.

  320. 320
    Corner Stone says:

    @General Stuck: Yeah, like a sad, old, out of shape boxer taking stiff jabs to the face bleeds all over the ring til the ref calls it off.
    Cole did his best to throw your towel into the ring but you waved him off and continued to get stuck stiff in your puss.

  321. 321
    Corner Stone says:

    @Hob:

    and I don’t know why Stuck is insisting that Greenwald is being cagey about that.

    If Greenwald misplaced a period in the 14th update to this story Stuck would clamp onto it and slobber his way round.

  322. 322
    General Stuck says:

    @Corner Stone:

    OH Corner Stone, you love me, you know you do :)

  323. 323
    RAM says:

    Obama said we weren’t going to torture any more. I didn’t believe him when he said it because of his absolute refusal to investigating the Cheney torturers. Why not enforce the law unless the intention is to keep on violating it?

    He knows there’s no way to verify whether the U.S. tortures or not; Congress has abdicated oversight over what is done in secret and the courts refuse to follow the law in deference to military and civilian intelligence thugs. As we’ve seen during the past two years, talk is cheap. Now it turns out we’re torturing one of our own people, I have absolutely no difficulty believing that we’re doing much, much worse to our foreign prisoners.

    Used to be the people who did this were Nazis, Soviets, Pol Pot and his boys, the North Koreans, the Red Chinese. Now it’s us. This is thuggish, disgusting, abhorrent behavior, and anyone involved in it is un-American. That included Bush and now it looks an awful lot like it’s including Obama, too.

  324. 324
    eemom says:

    let the record reflect that, as of comment 307, CS has officially become One with matoko. tee hee

  325. 325
    General Stuck says:

    @Hob:

    I will wait to hear from the Lt, or military with a full on record statement about all of this. If it makes me a fascist, so be it.

  326. 326
    General Stuck says:

    @eemom:

    I think they were made for each other, or from each other.

  327. 327
    Hob says:

    @General Stuck: I want to hear from the military too, but what you said was that it was impossible to tell who Greenwald’s sources are, and that plainly isn’t true.

    This story was published less than seven hours ago, so I’m fine with waiting till tomorrow to see if anyone else from the press or the government gets into the act. But someone has to break every story, unless you want Manning’s attorney to go running through the streets himself with a bullhorn. I find it very easy to believe that the attorney brought this to Greenwald, given the nature and background of the case.

    Anyway, I think you had the right idea in #265.

  328. 328
    General Stuck says:

    @Hob:

    I want to hear from the military too, but what you said was that it was impossible to tell who Greenwald’s sources are, and that plainly isn’t true.

    No, it was true. The exact details of Manning’s treatment were not named for source. The other sources you mentioned, like House, simply stated he looked bad. There is no direct attribution to the details GG lays out early in the piece concerning Manning’s general and specific treatment . That I could see. As it is always a chore to read his posts and decipher out info. Other than GG word that is what the LT, told him, we have no confirmation that is direct from the military, or anyone else.

  329. 329
    Hob says:

    @Corner Stone: You know, I have serious problems with Stuck’s position here but at least he’s sort of talking about the topic of the fucking post. Any chance you could move the flamewar somewhere else? It’s not like there aren’t a bunch of open threads where you and he and your other designated foes can exchange one-liners and fling shit.

  330. 330
    General Stuck says:

    Anyway, I think you had the right idea in #265.

    It is a weakness of mine, to not walk away when I should. And not respond to subsequent flames directed my way. I have tried to change this, with not a lot of success. I likely been commenting on this blog too long, and collected too many detractors that end up screwing up the experience for others with this kind of nonsense tit for tat. I am working on fixing that also, too, hopefully sooner rather than later. Blog addiction is real.

  331. 331
    Corner Stone says:

    @Hob: There’s probably a few threads here where you can fuck off and die too.
    Pick one, choad.

  332. 332
    Corner Stone says:

    @Hob: You know, I have serious problems with wankers like you. People who can chew past the fucking bullshit wankers like Stuck keep pushing.
    Any chance you could move your bullshit to some other blog? It’s not like there aren’t several where you can go and spread your stupid fucking false equivalence.
    Have you paid any fucking attention at all in this thread?
    You fucking wank.

  333. 333
    Corner Stone says:

    @Hob: You fucking chump.

  334. 334
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck:

    They are strawmen that you throw up because we are talking about a single instance of a high visibility prisoner allegedly being mis treated by the US Military under Obama’s command. The facts surrounding these accusations have exactly zilch to do with anything else, whether that be the past or general concerns about the US detention policies.

    The facts of other cases clearly matter when you have attacked GG for having the audacity to claim that US military might torture someone, as if that claim is so wild and far fetched that only a true conspiracy nut might believe it.

    And if I have to define to you what “verified” means, then there is likely no point in saying anything to you.

    The reason you need to define it is that I want to be perfectly clear what you consider sufficient to reach the state of being verified. If Brian Ross at ABC repeats the story is that enough? How about if Politico follows up? How many MSM organizations or which particular ones have to report it for it to be verified?

    And your blanket condemnations of ALL news organizations is just more dogmatic bullshit. There are a number of first rate reporters, usually at newspapers around the country, who specialize in this sort of thing, around national defense. Like James Risen, Dana Priest, and others, who I trust a hell of a lot more than a blogger.

    You are moving the goalposts. You said that GG’s piece would have been rejected by any respectable news org. I submit that every so called respectable news organization in the nation has published something of equal “validity” to GG’s piece and the fact that they may have first rate reporters on their staff is irrelevant to that point.

  335. 335
    matoko_chan says:

    what is wrong with you people.
    a branch of the armed services just ordered its servicemen NOT TO READ AN AMERICAN NEWSPAPER.
    where is that in the MOTHERFUCKING constitution?

    Fucking freedom of speech, how does it work?

  336. 336
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    When the movie version of this is made, it will probably made by the French or the Germans, because the Government/Media/Corporate complex will never approve of it. Hell even IFC and Sundance will be banned from showing it.

  337. 337
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR: You misinterpreted almost everything I have been writing on this thread, and the bullshit needs to end. I already answered your smarmy questions, in detail to what I meant. This worship of GG is really a sick thing, and I want no more to do with it. We will see how this story shakes out, and if GG was right, then I will admit it, and give him kudos. If he is wrong, well, that won’t exactly be news to me.

  338. 338
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck:

    You misinterpreted almost everything I have been writing on this thread, and the bullshit needs to end. I already answered your smarmy questions, in detail to what I meant.

    I have taken the energy to quote both you and I in order to make my points. Could you do me the same courtesy and provide me some specifics for what I have misinterpreted or what you already answered that I keep badgering you about?

  339. 339
    Hob says:

    @Corner Stone: OK, you’re a crazy person and I won’t try to talk to you again. “False equivalence”? Huh? Either you have me confused with someone else or you’re just here to start fights for no reason. Bye.

  340. 340
    Corner Stone says:

    @Hob: If there’s one thing I can hope for here, it’s that you won’t waste my time spewing nonsense at me.
    Take a gambol through the fucking thread you ignorant sonovabitch.

  341. 341
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR: OK I will try. Butinterpreting what you say is not easy/

    Verified – means something more than GG;s word, or what he writes other people said. It means hearing directly from the LT or military on what was said in discussions with greenwald on the phone. As well as them having the opportunity to make a statement unfiltered by GG.

    You said that GG’s piece would have been rejected by any respectable news org.

    Yes, meaning ones with standards of verifying stories by at least one other source. In this case we have none. As GG or any reporter cannot be a source for a story, unless they witnessed it first hand. And the short blurps from LT Villiard would be laughed at at any RESPECTABLE news org.

    The facts of other cases clearly matter when you have attacked GG for having the audacity to claim that US military might torture someone, as if that claim is so wild and far fetched that only a true conspiracy nut might believe it.

    And this is just hyperbolic bullshit. Greenwald can accuse anyone he wants, all I am saying is needs the facts, FOR THIS PARTICULAR CASE to be considered ACCURATE, OR BETTER YET RIGHT.

    I have explained myself as best I can, even though I had already done it. If you don’t agree, well, then, you don’t agree.

  342. 342
    MattR says:

    @General Stuck: Jesus. You are going to accuse me of misinterpreting these things when you initially answered my requests for clarification with claims of strawmen instead of just providing the info you just typed up.

  343. 343
    General Stuck says:

    @MattR:

    You are correct, I should not have used strawmen, except for the part about past abuse situations having anything to do with the facts of this case. So I apologize for that.

  344. 344
    Mark S. says:

    @General Stuck:

    I will wait to hear from the Lt, or military with a full on record statement about all of this.

    Once the military issues a blanket denial, Stuck will consider this matter closed. And it will prove Greenwald is the greatest traitor since Benedict Arnold.

  345. 345
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mark S.:

    Once the military issues a blanket denial, Stuck will consider this matter closed.

    And if Bobby Gates said it himself it wouldn’t change a damn thing.
    Goalposts —-> thataway por favor

  346. 346
    General Stuck says:

    @Mark S.: @Corner Stone:

    and there it is, mission accomplished by GG no matter what the truth is, and another left wing myth is birthed that Obama , the military, and America is guilty for ever, in the fever swamp blogs.

  347. 347
    Corner Stone says:

    @General Stuck: Oh Stuck. Stop playing the poor lying martyr. You’ve been wanking this whole thread and have once again been repeatedly called on it.
    Got nothing to do with Obama or the military. So stop hiding. You wanked and got called for the wanker you are.

  348. 348
    Mark S. says:

    @General Stuck:

    Where could anyone have gotten the idea that the US has been abusing detainees? There’s simply been no evidence of it. It must have been completely dreamed up by America-hating Glenn Greenwald.

  349. 349
    General Stuck says:

    @Mark S.:

    Corner Stone is an idiot, but I thought you would care about learning the truth about this case, first. Guess not.

  350. 350

    […] is a follow up to John Cole’s Thug Nation […]

  351. 351
    mclaren says:

    @General Stuck:

    More defense of torture, more failed and futile efforts to justify Obama’s unjustifiable acquiescence to brutality and tyranny.

    At this point General Crackpot Fake Name is screaming obscenities at the Star Wars action figures lined up on his computer while he types, and his mommy is beating on the floor of the basement telling him to pipe down because she’s trying to sleep.

  352. 352
    mclaren says:

    I. Investigative agencies are directed to speed up the cases of those accused of the preparation or execution of acts of terror.

    From Kruschev’s secret speech on the crimes of Josef Stalin, 1957.

  353. 353
    mclaren says:

    @The Dangerman:

    You know what? When your victims finally form lynch mobs and drag you out of your home and hang you from the lamppost, I’m not going to be able to stop them.

    And at this point…I don’t care anymore.

    Enjoy the descent into barbarism. When the uprising finally begins and the mob comes for you, they’ll come for you wife and daughter too. That’ll be a shame.

  354. 354
    Bob Westal says:

    I don’t have time — or the inclination to read all of the comments — people on all sides are freaking crazy right now. However, I think it might be helpful to remember that this case has a precedent? Anyone remember Wen Ho Lee?

    Held in solitary for nine months for no reason that I could ever fathom. Yet, apart from journalist Bob Sheer, not even one complaint about his treatment. I’m as angry as anyone, but please don’t pretend this is anything new under the sun.

  355. 355
    Chris Grrr says:

    You are correct, and I have some blame with that. So I will shut up.

    Go die in a fire,

    I give up. Time to install the pie filter.

  356. 356
    mclaren says:

    @Chris Grrr:

    I wonder if we can get real-time augmented reality versions of that pie filter.

    So when the soldiers line each of us up against the wall and scream “You are a spineless running dog degenerate enemy of the state, and you will now be summarily executed!” all we hear is, “Yum, what delicious apple pie!”

  357. 357
    DickSpudCouchPotatoDetective says:

    there are those who would argue that prison should be a punishment beyond just a lack of freedom for the inmates and therefore some degree of additional punative measures is acceptable.

    Yes, of course there are such people. But I am not one of them, and I don’t agree with them.

    There is a reason why cruelty is mentioned in the Constitution. The reason is that cruelty is not morally defensible. Even when the person being cruelly treated is imprisoned for his own cruelty.

    Vengence is mine, sayeth the Flying Spaghetti Monster, if you get my drift.

  358. 358
    patrick II says:

    @Giants fan:
    Do you think most of the people we tortured had trials?

  359. 359

    @Uncle Clarence Thomas: Oh, the brilliance you bring…

    Stunning work, sir. Stunning work.

  360. 360
    AJ Hill says:

    @The Dangerman: Regardless of his military status Manning is a human being. Beyond that, the rap against torture is primarily what it reveals about us. In your case that’s not necessary.

  361. 361
    Kath says:

    I think this is important. Mr. Cole said:
    “…publicly make a show of our ability to crush one man. Because that is what this is- a message to every one else. ”

    I’m 50, and went back to college a few years ago finally for a degree. In 2006 I was at FSU, and a grad student — I was surprised by the fact that there was no protesting anything on this campus; there was some possibility of a draft. Granted, it’s in the south with all that implies, but still – nothing? And I asked some of the undergrads I was TA for, about that. And the answer was, a shrug, and “pretty much, we do digital dissent.” And at the time, I sort of filed that under “really? how does that work?”

    But in a digital age, if others in the military are inspired by Bradley Manning, well the brass must be pissing all over itself — because this is digital dissent. They have to shut this down and they are trying to send a huge message to kids, young people. I am willing to give Obama the benefit of the doubt in this case. Yes he knows but this could be a public relations disaster particularly with the base. This isn’t a Muslim whose life counts for nothing in public opinion, this is a kid, REALLY– like the man said, rosy cheeked, idealistic, kid. I think maybe Obama is caught because of the military aspect of this: the brass likely won’t take kindly to political correctives for this behavior. They will feel they have to send the message. Maybe if it was diplomatic corps it would be different, maybe not. But in the military we have now, yeah, they must see this as high treason because of the implications inherent in the action.

    Other things are worrying though — why now? I like GG, but we have Assange’s deal, and now the Manning situation appears, and I am wary of this triangulation. Something feels wrong about how this is emerging…

    But back to my wandering point — Gen Unity is digital. The Denial of Service attacks run along the digital dissent lines too. People aren’t always creative in their thinking but show them the way… and many will follow. Really you cannot police a digital state; govt is just now being made aware of that fact. What we haven’t had yet is a charismatic person come out and say in the interest of Truth, and non-violent digital resistance, to call on all people of conscience to become whistle blowers — I wonder if it would work. It would be so easy… that’s the implication. So they must see it as they have no choice but to destroy this soldier.

    But it’s like that line from Serenity — you can’t stop the signal.

  362. 362
    pattonbt says:

    I’m amazed that because it’s GG it HAS to be suspect. If this were two years ago and GG wrote this, this entire place would be in complete unison in loud braying at the Bush administration over this. Manning would be a hero and his treatment further evidence of the vile fascism of Bush/Cheney. This place would be calling for the lynching of Bush/Cheney over this.

    This is disgusting no matter who does it and it is sad to see so many here not only tacitly support this treatment but full on raging “America, Fuck Yeah!” boner hard over it. WTF? Seriously.

    Now before I get accused of firebagging, I’m mostly an Obot. But politicians are politicians and my expectations are so fucking low that I think Obama is basically Ghandi. I’m a cynic and have no expectations of Obama to actually be able to do something about this or if he could, waste political capital on it. The world sucks. People suck. Bad things happen to good people. And good people do bad things to good people. It’s happened throughout history and will keep happening for the rest of time. I try in my little way to make things better, but I know it won’t make shit for difference.

    So yeah, would it be cool if Obama stepped up and said “cut that shit out”, absolutely, but he never will. Does that suck. Yeah. Am I OK with some incremental reduction in the shittiness of the US, absolutely, would I like alot more alot faster, hell yeah. But we are where we are and real change is far, far away. And I can live with a bit of a pause and slow improvement.

    But this specific case should be a clear cut case of outrage. This sucks and none of us get a pass. All the apologists on this thread are fucked up people, because it’s when the chips are down and the hard choices have to be made when the real moral and upstanding people show up. And these apologists have shown them to be just like the people they say they hate. Fuck all of you, but I hope that if you ever find yourself in the same situation you are treated humanely and not subject to bullshit fascist shit like this.

    I mean really how hard is this to think through? Look at yourself in the mirror and if your are OK with this then admit that you are a fucking monster. But you can fuck off if you think you can play both sides and not get called on it.

    Fell free to hate on, but be prepared to be called out for what you are.

  363. 363
    Bob Westal says:

    @pattonbt:

    No hate from me. Most sensible comment I’ve read on any blog in a long time.

    I wouldn’t call myself an Obot — more of an Obot in remission because I do expect a FEW things to go right — but neither am I declaring the end of the world because, as you sort of put it, the world is a fucked up place sometimes. In a comment above I brought up Wen Ho Lee. The only difference in that case was that the crime he was accused of was a heinous act without any heroic component (unless you’re a fan of the Chinese government, that is). The other difference as was he turned out to be innocent of the lawbreaking he was accused of and I suspect there’s not much dispute that Manning actually released the documents, though there may be a legal out for him, I suppose.

    But that’s neither here nor there — singling out a particular prisoner for unusually cruel treatment based on no particular bad post-arrest behavior indefinitely is injustice, plain and simple. This is clearly unconstitutional but, yeah, Obama should enter the fray but that would be expecting something from that no President we’ve had over the last sixty years would have done.

    I get so sick of people talking about how bad we’ve become. The fact of the matter is, in a lot of respects, as bad as we are, we used to be even worse.

  364. 364
    Platonicspoof says:

    I simply am astounded at the lengths some of you will go to excuse this.

    As in one person making sixty-six out of 360+ comments.
    That, plus the responses, really skewed the thread.

    Otherwise, glad you and the other commenters posted on this, and that pattonbt finished it (for me).

  365. 365
    FlipYrWhig says:

    Wow, I missed this whole thing.

    Sounds like the military guy was saying “This is just routine solitary confinement,” and Greenwald was saying “This is an extra-vicious kind of solitary confinement, which I will prove by giving you as many details as I can gather.” Is Greenwald’s task to prove that all solitary confinement is an offense against decency, or is it to prove that this guy is being singled out and treated _worse_ than other instances? Well, YMMV.

  366. 366

    @Kath:But in a digital age, if others in the military are inspired by Bradley Manning, well the brass must be pissing all over itself

    There is a huge difference between the SPC who released the photos of torture at Abu Ghraib and the SPC who dumped classified material into the hands of a foreign person, and it’s a legalistic one. Manning signed an agreement with the United States not to do what he is alleged to have done. If he had concerns, he should have used his chain of command, as the SPC did with regards to Abu Ghraib.

    That being said, no, the young man should not be in solitary. He should be in protective custody for his own safety, but not in solitary. He should be restricted in how he communicates to the outside world (he is charged with delivering secrets to people who are not supposed to receive them) but he should not be driven insane, intentionally, by his custody arrangements.

    Now, when do we arrest Bob Woodward and put him in protective custody? Because I can guarantee you–guarantee you–the classified material that Woodward has leaked in the past decade has been of a much higher classification and far more damaging to national security than anything that Mr. Manning is alleged to have done.

    And before you think I’m defending Manning, please note. The little weirdo should have paid attention to what MOS he was signing up for and what papers he filled out because he’s in a boatload of trouble.

    Oh, and as to your other point, no. There is no viable peace movement in the United States. After nearly ten years of war, the hippies are still sitting in their own mess, waiting for someone to bring their meds and help them turn the channel.

    Do I like to punch hippies? Yes. Sweet Jesus, yes I do.

  367. 367
    ww says:

    … hear hear …

  368. 368
    Comrade Sock Puppet of the Great Satan says:

    “Manning would be a hero and his treatment further evidence of the vile fascism of Bush/Cheney. ”

    I don’t understand why folks here can believe Scooter Libby was a traitorous fuck and yet Manning a hero.

    They both leaked shit they swore oaths they wouldn’t, and both deserve their lives turning into shit for it.

    Like Norman Rogers says, Manning signed and swore on a stack of papers not to do what he did.

    “Now, when do we arrest Bob Woodward and put him in protective custody?”

    Woodward’s a journalist and didn’t sign or swear an oath to protect classified material. Plus I don’t agree with you that leaks given to Woodward were more damaging than what Manning did.

  369. 369

    My, my.

    Having a look at my IP address, hmm?

    Look all you wish, moderator.

  370. 370
    Charles says:

    The techniques Manning is being subjected to do not appear to be standard isolation techniques, particularly since he is a suspect, not a convict. They are designed to destroy a person’s thinking process, which will make it much more difficult for him to defend himself.

    As for the questions about the value of what Manning leaked, I have documented one case in which a Wikileaked document strongly indicates that Hillary Clinton and senior officials at the State Department knowingly violated US and international law. This could ultimately lead to charges in international courts (US courts being hopeless on these matters). A complaint has been filed with a competent body.

    Scholars and analysts have just begin their work on a small fraction of the cables. I suggest those who disparage the impact of the Wikileaks hold off until the impact becomes more apparent.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] is a follow up to John Cole’s Thug Nation […]

  2. […] John Cole captures the troubling sadism that this country has reverted to in the face of a terrorist threat and, predictably, how this warped mindset has begun to pervert the entire criminal justice system – not just the system putatively reserved for a certain class of supsects (not that such selectivity provides an excuse or justification): There is absolutely no reason for this whatsoever, other than the fact that the United States has morphed into a brutal and repressive regime that is terrified of dissent. The only difference between this treatment and what we imagine third world nations do is that we have cleaner and more modern facilities. Hell, at this point Manning would probably welcome physical torture- it would be a welcome diversion. […]

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