Speaking at an MIT seminar in Boston, Assistant Secretary Of State For Public Affairs P.J. Crowley said Manning is being “mistreated” in the military brig at Quantico, Virginia. “What is being done to Bradley Manning is ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid on the part of the department of defense,” he said.
Manning’s treatment — which includes being held for 23 hours daily in solitary confinement and being stripped naked every night — has sparked the ire of civil rights advocates as well as WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who called the U.S. Army intelligence analyst a “political prisoner [held] without trial.” But as the Guardian is reporting, Crowley’s comments mark the first time anyone within the Obama administration has expressed concern over Manning’s treatment
Good for him. On top of backing down on assorted other human-rights stands (*cough*gitmo*cough*), the treatment of Bradley Manning (and Wikileaks, for that matter) has been a blot on this administrations record. “Government transparency!”—except when it’s OUR government. “Internet freedom!”—except when it’s to OUR secrets people are sharing.
I expect this kind of establishment-line thinking from a Clinton state department, but I really wish Obama would re-grow a pair and make a clean break from our government’s history of double standards.