Thursday, July 18, 2013

In The Shadow of Daniel Ellsberg: Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden: The Patriots Act

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

My Dear America:

A long time ago in a Decade Far Away (the 70's)  I had a very extraordinary experience.  I attended a lecture at Lehigh University by Norman Mailer one evening and by an incredible stroke of luck I not only heard him speak but I actually got to meet him and spend time with him at a Fraternity party to which Norman invited the entire audience.

Although Norman talked about other things during his well attended lecture, it seemed to me that his main topic was that of recommending to the audience that they should get behind his latest idea which was the institution of a "Peoples CIA" in which regular Americans should take the time to spy on their Spy Agency and their Government.  Even though it was the decade in which we had Watergate and the virtual fouling of nearly everything American by Richard Nixon and his band of well dressed thugs, the "Peoples CIA" idea seemed Far Out by any standard.  When I got to talk to Mr. Mailer later on at the party I asked him whether he was really serious about the prospect of a "Peoples CIA".  He assured me that he was dead serious and that he thought that the time had come for this idea to become a reality.

Of Course the idea of a "Peoples CIA" never caught on and never became a reality during the seventies or any other decade following it, until now.

Now in 2013, however, we seem to have found a few people who have taken it upon themselves to form, if not a "Peoples CIA," at least a movement in the direction of discovering and uncovering secrets that not only Americans should know about, but do something about.

We have seen, however, at this time in our nations history when communication has been transformed into something incredibly special and accessable in which all manner of people can participate, that those Whistleblowers, who have become the "Peoples CIA" that Norman Mailer dreamed about, have also become the demonized scapegoats of the very governments and institutions that they have blown the whistle on.

In the case of Wikkileaks Whistleblower, Bradley Manning the United States Government seems to have locked him up with the intention of throwing away the key.  What did Bradley Manning do?  He exposed the fact that people supposedly acting with the blessing of the US Government were killing people indiscriminately.  His reward for letting Americans know about America's indiscriminate and indefensible behavior was to be placed in solitary confinement as if he was the criminal killing people for no reason at all.
My understanding is that Bradley Manning is either on trial or is being prepared for trial or Court Martial.  Have We the People heard anything about this man any time recently.

No We haven't.

We have heard about Edward Snowden, however.  This 29 year old tekkie is on the run after revealing to two newspapers that the United States Government is spying on its citizens in ways that we have never dreamed possible.  His reward for his revealing secrets that he was privy to as a Government Contractor, is apparently outrage on all sides of the American Tale.  Although Republicans, Democrats, Independents and Media seem to have had difficulty in agreeing on anything, They all seem to agree that Edward Snowden is bad news.  He's a Spy, a Traitor, an extremely bad American.

Personally, I think that both Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden are good Americans who have not followed the rules but have acted not for what they could have gained financially, apparently, but have acted in what they felt was the best interest of their country. 

Many have asked why Manning and Snowden have not gone through regular legal channels to present their information to the American People.

The answer to that is that many Whisleblowers who have come before them and who did blow the whistle the correct and legal way are now the incarcerated victims of Government Revenge and retribution.

It has been clear to many people, myself included, that something has been rotten in Washington for some time.  In my mind I had thought that what was rotten was mainly Republican Rot.  I have found out, however, that President Obama, who I have long admired and defended, has gone over the line on Whistleblowers by investigating and locking up More Whistleblowers and Journalists that reveal their secrets than any President before him.

Norman Mailer was right.  We need a "Peoples CIA" to protect us from a government that seems to have no qualms about locking up Patriots who are acting in our country's best interests, just as the Fathers of our Country did hundreds of years ago.

Although Barack Obama has done a lot of things right in the past few years this is one area in which I believe as an American Citizen that he is on the wrong side of history and that his legacy will pay for his sins.

Sincerely Yours

Jerry Gallagher