In Closing Arguments, Prosecutors Portray Manning As Reckless | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

In Closing Arguments, Prosecutors Portray Manning As Reckless

Pfc. Bradley Manning acted recklessly when he released a massive cache of classified information, prosecutors said during closing arguments at his military trial in Fort Meade in Maryland today.

"WikiLeaks was merely the platform that Pfc. Manning used to make sure all the information was available to the world, including the enemies of the United States," Maj. Ashden Fein said according to The Los Angeles Times. "Pfc. Manning deliberately disclosed compromised information to the world."

Manning, if you remember, has already admitted that he perpetrated the largest leak of classified information in the history of the United States. But he has denied the most serious charge he's faced with: aiding the enemy, a charge punishable by life in prison. At issue is whether Manning knowingly provided intelligence to enemies of the U.S.

As The New York Times explains it, Fein was trying to distinguish Manning from other leakers. Manning, Fein argued, didn't leak information to traditional news outlets like The Times or The Washington Post. Instead, he said, Manning chose WikiLeaks because it ensured the information would get out "to the world in exactly the form they would receive it."

The Times explains:

"As the trial has moved toward its conclusion, the more philosophical questions confronting [Col. Denise Lind] are re-emerging center stage — including whether WikiLeaks played a journalistic role and whether providing information to the anti-secrecy group was any different, for legal purposes, from providing it to a traditional news outlet.

"Critics of the case have warned that a conviction on the aiding-the-enemy charge would establish the government's theory on which it is based — that giving information to an organization that publishes it online is the same as giving it to an enemy — as precedent in leak cases."

NBC News reports the defense may begin delivering its closing arguments later today. Manning's lawyers have portrayed him "as well-intentioned but young and naive."

If you're looking for more background on the case, we've put together a shortish guide to understanding the case.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

As Publishing Industry Courts China, Authors Speak Out Against Censorship

Chinese writers and publishers are being celebrated this week at BookExpo America — the industry's largest trade event in North America. Free speech advocates are supporting silenced Chinese writers.
NPR

Cod Comeback: How The North Sea Fishery Bounced Back From The Brink

A decade ago, fishermen trying to catch North Sea cod were coming up empty. Now, thanks to strict fishing rules put in place to halt the decline, this fish tale looks headed for a happy ending.
WAMU 88.5

D.C. Immigrants Remain In Shadows While Reform Hits Roadblock

The administration's appeal to lift an injunction against his executive actions on immigration reform was denied. Consequently tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the metro D.C. area will continue to live in the shadows.
NPR

FCC Chairman Wants To Help Low Income Americans Afford Broadband

Tom Wheeler proposes to reboot the Lifeline phone-access program. The plan recognizes that everyone needs to study, apply for jobs and make social connections online.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.