In the U.S., the White House continue to protest against the sentence of Bradley Manning. For the corporal, who was sentenced to 35 years in prison for disclosing unpleasant, but because of classified information about the actions of the U.S. Army, stood up his colleagues. Manning's lawyers plan to ask for a pardon by President Barack Obama in person, for the rating of which it may become a key decision.
The verdict Bradley Manning albeit not as severe as requested by the public prosecutor, but it's certainly not just a legal decision. This is a warning to all potential fighters for freedom of information.
Leaks, including deliberate, of U.S. intelligence happened before. But the sentences were different.
Former linguist Shamai Leibowitz, who worked for the FBI and passed an unknown hacker secrets, was sentenced to 20 months in prison.
Employee of the National Security Agency Thomas Drake received for the same year of probation.
An employee of the Central Intelligence Agency, John Kirjakov received a 30-month period.
And then — 35 years. And this despite the fact that the court acquitted Manning for the most serious count of — "aiding the enemy". But found guilty on 20 out of 22 points: violations of anti-spyware laws, the violation of the internal rules of the armed forces, theft of government property, computer crime.
And it is important, Manning did not spy in favor of any particular State. Do not give up the secrets behind the money, did not aspire to become famous. And at first he went to the American newspaper, where he was simply not taken seriously. And only after that he gave secret documents to WikiLeaks.
It is important, of course, what kind of information they were. This is not information about the location of military bases or military ciphers, no call letters or drawings of a secret weapon. These were the magazines of warfare American units in Afghanistan and Iraq with information about the killings of civilians, correspondence embassies and video of the crew of Air Force combat helicopter with jokes and quips hunt for civilians in Baghdad. As well as files on inmates at Guantanamo Bay.
That is the main secret, contained in the materials Manning was that the U.S. military commits war crimes. And 35 years — just for the fact that now the whole world knows it.
"U.S. intelligence has now put itself in a difficult situation into a dead end. Firstly, they have formed a contradiction that we had in Soviet times, when on the one hand the U.S. propaganda says that the main thing — it's a person's personality, most importantly — they are human rights which are beyond the capability and the rights of the state, but on the other side of the American experience of life and intelligence suggests that a simple man — nothing compared to the state, "- says the director of the Institute for Policy Studies political analyst Sergei Markov.
"Such a harsh sentence for Private Manning also demonstrates the crisis of American democracy. Those people who witness gross violations of U.S. law, argue about these violations. But instead, to get the status of the great champions of American values, they are sent to prison," — says Director General of the Foreign Policy Research Institute and initiatives Veronica Krasheninnikova.
Here's what's interesting: in 1971, the U.S. suffered a similar scandal. Military analyst Daniel Ellsberg gave the press a secret collection of "US-Vietnam relations."
It then journalists dubbed the "Pentagon Papers." The information in it showed extremely unpleasant truth about the war in Vietnam. Ellsberg, of course, was arrested, he faces 115 years in prison, much like Manning.
The only difference is that Ellsberg was acquitted, because the methods of collecting evidence violated human rights, and this has caused public outrage. Manning, by the way, is also psychologically pressed, kept awake, did not let out a small single camera.
But America for forty years has changed dramatically. For those who still do not understand it, the sentence to former corporal has yet to explain clearly.