DENVER – Fifty-one events took place today in five continents to call for the release of Bradley Manning from 1000 days in custody. On July 12, 2007 U.S. military killed and wounded unarmed locals in the capitol Baghdad in Iraq including two journalists and wounding two children. In this audio posted to YouTube, we hear U.S. soldiers asking for clearance to “engage” on a group of people below from their helicopter. In the clip, you can hear that after the shooting, a van pulled up which we later learn was a good samaritan who stopped to pick up bodies. We hear quotes such as, “nice shot”, “way to kill ’em all”, “dead bastards” and another from the ground laughing while saying, “I just ran over one of them”.
Included with those shot were Reuters photographer Namir Noor-Eldeen and driver Saeed Chmagh . The good samaritan was Saleh Mutashar who was killed but his young children-whom he was taking to school-Sadja and his sister, survived.
PFC Bradley Manning, a 24 year old Army intelligence analyst is accused of releasing the above video that shows the killing of the unarmed civilians. The Nobel Peace Prize nominee has been charged with “aiding the enemy”.
In April 2011 over a half million people signed a petition to President Obama demanding the transfer of Manning out of isolation and an end to his torture. Up to that time, he had been held in solitary confinement. His attorney David Cooms said that this torture included nude display and sleep deprivation. Partially in response to public outcry, on April 21, 2011 Manning was transferred from Quantico to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas where his conditions greatly improved.
PFC Bradley Manning has been in jail awaiting trial for 1,000 days on February 21st. To mark this day, actions were held across the globe including a die-in in Melbourne, Australia, and a banner drop in Berkeley, California. Other actions took place in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, South Korea, Uganda, the UK and Wales, New York City, and in San Diego. Denver took part in actions on Saturday west of the Capitol building.
A petition was created by Pentagon Papers whistle-blower Daniel Ellsburg, the Center for Constitutional Rights, and the Bradley Manning Support Network addressed to both President Obama and to Army Major General Michael Linnington. Manning returns to court in Fort Meade, MD for a pretrial hearing from February 26 to March 1, 2013 where Judge Denise Lind will decide on the defense motion to dismiss charges for lack of a speedy trial.
Refufia Gaintan/The Nation Report