Bradley Manning’s pre-trial hearing begins December 16, 2011

Army sets pre-trial hearing date for Bradley. Vigils and rallies planned at Fort Meade MD, worldwide.

Protest his Pretrial Hearing Saturday, Dec 17th (Bradley’s Birthday Day) at 12pm noon at Fort Meade, MD outside Washington D.C.! (Solidarity actions taking place around the world.)

Rally for Bradley at Fort Meade leaflet PDF

After 560 days of pretrial confinement, including 250 days spent in solitary conditions, the Military has finally announced that PFC Bradley Manning’s Pretrial Hearing will begin on December 16th in the Washington D.C. area.

PFC Bradley Manning is accused of uncovering the facts behind a system of foreign policy that routinely hides abuse from public scrutiny. “If convicted of all charges, Manning would face a maximum punishment… of confinement for life” the U.S. Army reports.

If he is the source of the WikiLeaks revelations, he is the most significant whistle-blower in a generation. According to journalists, his alleged actions helped motivate the democratic Arab Spring movements, shed light on secret corporate influence on our foreign policies of the sort #OccupyWallStreet opposes, and most recently contributed to the Obama Administration agreeing to withdraw all U.S.troops from the failed occupation in Iraq.

Bradley Manning, who turns 24 on the date of our protest, is a young soldier from a working-class background who believed that people should know the truth, “no matter who they are… because without information you cannot make informed decisions as a public.”

He now faces opposition from embarrassed politicians and military officials, and potential life in prison on a poorly defined military charge of “Aiding the enemy through indirect means.” If words attributed to Bradley Manning are accurate, it appears that he was motivated only by a desire to expose questionable and illegal actions by our leaders. This information had been concealed — not to protect us — but in order to avoid accountability. According to several who served in the same unit as Manning, this information had already been made available to Iraqi Army recruits — but not the American public. It is absurd for our government to suggest that the American people is somehow “the enemy.”

As founding father Patrick Henry wrote, “The liberties of a people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them.”

Bradley’s pretrial hearing date has been announced, and this is the time to take our support of Bradley into the streets. Bradley Manning was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize last month, and topped the UK Guardian’s Readers Poll. Now the world watches the proceedings of this case while judging our country as a whole.

Previous protests outside of a Quantico brig where Manning was being held were successful in ending the mistreatment he had endured there. December 17th will be our International Day of Solidarity with the largest protest taking place outside the gates of Fort Meade!

Army News Release PDF

Reprinted for your convenience from the Bradley Manning Support Network website www.bradleymanning.org

For people outside of the DC and Baltimore area, we welcome creative solidarity actions. Visit events.bradleymanning.org to register your event.

Please share this announcement with friends and connections via e-mail, facebook, and twitter.

Sincerely,

The Bradley Manning Support Network

This will be PFC Manning’s first appearance before a court and the first time he will face his accusers after 17 months in confinement. In a blog post this morning, Manning’s lead counsel, David Coombs, notified supporters that the pretrial phase is scheduled to last five days.

https://twitter.com/?photo_id=1#!/zpez/status/138782513756770304/photo/1 Hmmm, www.mdw.army.mil is still unavailable as we are making this post. Guess they forgot the “expect us” thing again… #lulz

December court date set for Bradley Manning in WikiLeaks case

Raw Story
By Agence France-Presse
Monday, November 21, 2011

“The primary purpose of the Article 32 hearing is to evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of the government’s case as well as to provide the defense with an opportunity to obtain pretrial discovery,” a Pentagon statement said.

It added that the hearing, which is scheduled to take place the day before his 24th birthday, is “similar to a civilian grand jury, with additional rights afforded to the accused.”

“The primary purpose of the Article 32 hearing is to evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of the government’s case as well as to provide the defense with an opportunity to obtain pretrial discovery,” a Pentagon statement said.

It added that the hearing, which is scheduled to take place the day before his 24th birthday, is “similar to a civilian grand jury, with additional rights afforded to the accused.”

Bradley Manning hearing date set as court martial process finally begins

Guardian film: the madness of Bradley Manning?

reddit this in New York
guardian.co.uk, Monday 21 November 2011 17.28 GMT

“The standard of proof in an Article 32 hearing is relatively low, military law experts say. The prosecution has merely to present sufficient evidence to prove there is “reasonable cause to believe” that Manning committed the offences.

Once the hearing has been completed, a recommendation will be made to a military general who will decide whether or not to proceed to a full trial.

Philip Cave, a retired navy judge advocate who now works on court martial cases as a civilian lawyer, said the hearing would be a “road bump on the way towards Manning’s trial. Does anybody seriously imagine that Bradley Manning isn’t going to trial?”

But the hearing would be significant, Cave said, because it would give the first public indication of the prosecution and defence cases.”

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