Monday, June 10, 2013

Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden ... why is one a traitor and one a hero?

It is a curious juxtaposition. 

Bradley Manning, following his conscience, released reams of documents to WikiLeaks, many related to the West's phony 'War on Terror'. The Guardian and NY Times, among others, cherry-picked and published small portions of Manning's files and the young soldier was immediately locked away under federal detention. It is doubtful Manning has seen the light of day since his arrest in May of 2010. 

Three years later, Manning's trial has commenced. He is a 'traitor' for attempting to expose some of America's behaviour abroad. 

At the same time Manning sits in court, pleading for his life, Edward Snowden comes forward with his own files. Snowden's paperwork doesn't focus on America's immoral activities abroad, but rather the American government's willingness and ability to spy on its own citizens. 

Manning, an American soldier, has been reviled by the conservative and mainstream press in the USA. Some 'progressive' outlets have written warmly of Manning but by and large the American populace have been led to believe Manning is a young Aaron Burr, willing to sell out his fellow soldiers and country, and he deserves what's coming.

One would expect Snowden to receive the same treatment. Here's another traitor, dealing American State Secrets to a British newspaper and then running off to Red China for protection. Does that not scream 'Anti-American!'??? Yet the conservative press have fallen head-over-heels in love with Snowden and his '''revelations''' (revelations for some, I guess, though the facts revealed by Snowden have been known to many of us now for at least a decade, though our friends at Fox News and CNN are, I guess, just now getting up to speed).

So what's the difference between Manning and Snowden? Why is one vilified and the other already regaled as a hero? 

1) Manning exposed what was being done in OUR name to fellow human beings who have (or had) the misfortune of being born in another part of the world. He did not expose what was being done to us Americans. Manning's files offended. If there's one thing Americans just cannot stand, it is having their collective dirty laundry aired in public. 

2) Snowden exposed what is being done to us by our government. Now that, I guess, is worth getting riled up about. Who the hell cares to read of abuses done to Muslim families? Serves the bastards right. However, it is flabbergasting to know that our government dares to spy on us - even if it is for our own good. The conservative American press also finds Snowden's expose to be another arrow in the quiver to aim at Obama's White House. As I type this Drudge has a headline under a photo of Obama reading: 'Another Day... Another Scandal'. Ah yes. Obama wants to spy on you and I but if we'd only elect a slate of republicans all the spying would stop... 

Don't get me wrong. I fully support Snowden, just as I fully support Bradley Manning (though in Snowden's case I'm not yet convinced his going public isn't part of a bigger con being played on my fellow Americans - if he gets arrested and spends the next year in a 4 X 6 cage with lights on 24-7 and armed guards pestering him at all hours, then I'll believe he's as legit as Bradley Manning - until then I reserve judgment).  ALL 'whistleblowers' deserve our support and aid. But I find it very curious that Snowden is the new hero of Fox and Drudge and many other bullshitters who claim to disseminate News.