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Monday, June 3, 2013

Bradley Manning rally at Ft. Meade, MD

Bradley Manning

On the eve of his court-martial at Ft. Meade, MD, hundreds gathered on Saturday to show support for Bradley Manning, a whistle-blower who has been nominated again this year for the Nobel Peace Prize. Manning is being tried for releasing documents and videos to Wikileaks including a video which he found especially revolting of an American airstrike in Baghdad which killed at least 12 unarmed Iraqi civilians, including children, and the Americans can be heard laughing about it. 
 
The documents revealed evidence of torture of detainees, participation by an American contractor in child trafficking, and 15,000 more Iraqi civilian deaths than the military previously reported.  Bradley Manning thought the people of the United States should know the atrocities their government kept hidden.
 
On Saturday the most unpopular name heard during the afternoon was President Barack Obama's.  His administration has targeted government whistleblowers twice as much (6) as all past presidents combined (3).  (Mr. President:  Rather than spending so much time on whistleblowers who seek to inform the citizenry, why don't you spend time on gun control, closing Guantanamo, getting your judicial appointments confirmed, reducing sexual assaults in the military, and breaking the blockade in Congress?)
 
Although the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides that
 
"[i]n all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy . . . trial . . . ." The Clause protects the defendant from delay between the presentation of the indictment or similar charging instrument and the beginning of trial," (Wikipedia)
 
Bradley Manning has been imprisoned for three years, including solitary confinement and stripped of his clothing ("fear of suicide") in conditions deemed torture by the United Nations.


At the Fort Meade main gate at Highway 175 and Reece Road/Patricia Leslie
 
At the Fort Meade main gate at Highway 175 and Reece Road/Patricia Leslie

 
At the Fort Meade main gate at Highway 175 and Reece Road/Patricia Leslie

 
A billboard for Bradley Manning at the Fort Meade main gate at Highway 175 and Reece Road/Patricia Leslie

At the Ft. Meade main gate at Reece Road and Highway 175/Patricia Leslie







Listening to speakers at the Bradley Manning support rally.  The temperature neared 90 degrees/Patricia Leslie
Code Pink, United for Peace and Justice, the Bradley Manning Support Network, Veterans for Peace, Iraq Veterans Against the War, Courage to Resist, and the ANSWER Coalition were some of the groups which participated in the Bradley Manning support rally at Ft. Meade Saturday/Patricia Leslie


At the Fort Meade main gate at Highway 175 and Reece Road/Patricia Leslie

The mile march for Bradley Manning along Highway 175 which borders Ft. Meade. The group was about three times the size of the March, 2011 rally for Bradley Manning at Quantico, Virginia/Patricia Leslie

The mile march for Bradley Manning along Highway 175 which borders Ft. Meade/Patricia Leslie

A rolling drum set the tone for chants: 
We will
We will free you.

Brother, sister,
Do not hide,
We've got truth on our side

A Ft. Meade guard rode a motorcycle up and down the fence line, following the marchers and kicking up dust/Patricia Leslie

A police escort along Highway 175/Patricia Leslie

These Bradley Manning supporters walked more than a mile along Reece Road to reach the Ft. Meade main gate.  With permission they had parked their cars at a school/Patricia Leslie



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