Should We Feel Sorry for Bradley Manning?

Is Army Private Bradley Manning a hero or a traitor? I firmly believe the latter, but there is an article in Navy Times that perhaps the private is someone to feel sorry for:

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning wears handcuffs
PFC Bradley Manning in handcuffs.

But it was Army Pfc. Bradley Manning who provided those documents, and the 25-year-old emerges as the sympathetic star of the new documentary, “We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks,” which opens Friday — just weeks before Manning’s trial for those security breaches is set to begin June 3.

“I hope that people see this film and have the kind of sympathy for Bradley Manning that I have,” said director Alex Gibney. “I think he’s gotten a really rotten deal. He’s been treated extremely unfairly. And I don’t think that’s widely known.”

Gibney himself didn’t really know about Manning when he first began working on the WikiLeaks documentary at the behest of producer Marc Shmuger. It was 2011, and Assange was a worldwide star who declined the director’s invitations to be interviewed on camera. Gibney went looking elsewhere and found a bounty of published online chats between Manning and the man who would ultimately turn him in, Adrian Lamo.

I do not, in any way, feel sorry for the traitor. . .

U.S. Army Intelligence Officer, Private Bradley Manning

Is it too much to ask that ol’ Reuters get the facts correct about Private First Class Bradley Manning? Read this sentence and tell me what is wrong: The U.S. Army intelligence officer accused of slipping military and diplomatic secrets to WikiLeaks is expected to take the witness stand on Thursday, when he will read aloud from a 35-page statement defending himself in the espionage case.

Julian Assange Wears a Poppy Pin?

I find this very hard to take, that in the below picture Julian Assange is wearing a poppy pin, a poppy in honor of those who died in World War I and beyond. ( From jezebel: The Royal British Legion, an organization that helps veterans, distributes and sells them every year as a way to raise money.) 

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange wears a poppy pin for Remembrance Day.

Does he not understand that his publishing of classified material gave aid and comfort to the enemy in direct opposition to that poppy pin he wears? That he may be “remembering” men he was indirectly/directly responsible for killing?

Backwater Dump Treads Water, Front and Center

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange

I don’t think of Ecuador as a particularly advanced country. After all, we have issues with their illegal immigrant, gang members in the United States.

And Ecuadorean Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino saying: The countries that have a right to protect Assange have failed him [WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange] is victim of political persecution … If Assange is extradited to U.S., he will not receive a fair trial, does not make me look upon them any more fondly.

The British government has threatened to revoke Ecuador’s diplomatic status, which in case, they would storm the backwater country’s embassy. I’m all for this solution. It is a miracle Assange is still alive.

Feature a Traitor: the Way to Win Support for Your Cause

The way to win support for your particular cause is to make posters with Bradley Manning’s picture on them. I was not at all supportive of the “peace” marchers in Chicago (protesting NATO) until I saw the WIkiLeaks Private on a sign. And then, of course, I was won over by the persuasiveness of featuring a traitor for propaganda purposes.

A military forum weighs in here on the issue.

Bloggers: Do Not Read This Post

Come Back

This post is for non-bloggers only. If you have your own site, you are hereby warned, under penalty of law, not to read this.

What’s a-causing the big commotion?

Well, Japan is seeking some publicity. From some “highly influential blogger-types.” (Of course, this pre-requisite immediately disqualifies me.) The unusual tactics direct from the source:

Japanese Geisha Bloggers

“We are hoping to get highly influential blogger-types, and others who can spread the word that Japan is a safe place to visit,” said Kazuyoshi Sato, with the agency.

Interesting. How and who is going to implement the program?

If you’ve ever wanted to visit Japan, this may be your chance.

In a desperate attempt to lure tourists back to a country plagued by radiation fears and constant earthquakes, the Japan Tourism Agency‘s proposed an unprecedented campaign – 10,000 free roundtrip tickets.

Japan, Blogger’s Paradise

The catch is, you need to publicize your trip on blogs and social media sites.

Fellow bloggers, if you read this, despite my musculary warnings, do not enter the contest with the good folks at the Japan Tourism Agency.

Or, if despite my exhortations to the oppostie, you insist on casting your name into the Japanese bowler hat, and you actually win, you had better take me with you!

I suppose now is a good enough time as any to explore the latest and greatest from cherry-blossom land. Let’s see, another WikiSneaks nugget:

President Barack Obama Bowing to Japan’s Emperor

A heretofore secret cable dated Sept. 3, 2009, was recently released by WikiLeaks. Sent to Secretary of State Clinton, it reported Japan’s Vice Foreign Minister Mitoji Yabunaka telling U.S. Ambassador John Roos that “the idea of President Obama visiting Hiroshima to apologize for the atomic bombing during World War II is a ‘nonstarter.’”

In keeping with the (mostly) apolitical vein of this blog, I won’t comment on the above. Although Bryan Preston, from PJ Media, does have several interesting Navy tales to tell, and we are nothing if not interested in those. He also offers a good pol-mil perspective:

Japan wants you to visit!

As weird as this sounds, having studied the war and the post-war period extensively and having lived in Japan for years and visited both Hiroshima and Nagasaki, I’m convinced that the atomic bombings saved Japan.

They saved Japan from her own militarism and from potential Soviet invasion and partition.

America bequeathed to our bitter enemy a democracy that functions well to this day, and Japan is our strong friend despite its having raised its hand against us.

America has nothing to apologize for in its conduct or conclusion of that war. Nothing at all.

Japan and the United States: friends. What else is going on with the Land of the Rising Fun? The Japanese Navy visiting Pearl Harbor:

Japanese Sailor working, Chiefs looking Chiefly above him

A Japanese naval training squadron is expected to arrive at Pearl Harbor for a port visit.

The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Training Squadron is expected to arrive Monday morning at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

And what is Japan without a little wackiness? This time with cats:

The city of Saga has found an interesting way of dealing with stray cats.

Instead of sending animal control officers to round up and imprison the cats, it has turned them into celebrities.

One lucky Japanese cat in Saga, Japan

Two years ago, eight of the downtown area’s stray cats were designated “stray cat idols.”

Local shops began to sell souvenirs featuring images of the eight “lucky” cats, and one bakery sold cookie reproductions of them.

Under penalty of losing my man card, watch the video on the link above. It is priceless.