Our readers here know that I was a very vocal critic of the Bush administration and their war on the U.S. Constitution. I have resisted the urge to bee too critical of the Obama administration, if for no other reason than the right wingers are doing a pretty good job of it on their own. But sometimes even a good Democrats need to stand up and say something when their leadership fail to adhere to the core values that every American should hold dear.
I have been following the twitter feeds from the David Dayen over at Fire Dog LakeÂ blog regarding the attempt today by David House and Jane Hamsher to visit Pvt. Bradley Manning who is being detained in the Marine Detention facility in Quantico, VA. I’m left wondering why our government sees fit to investigate, detain, and otherwise harass law abiding citizens because they try to visit someone a prisoner who has yet to be triedÂ or convicted ofÂ a crime.
House, a computer researcher from BostonÂ has been one of Manning’s only visitors since he was transferred to Quantico where he is being held in solitary confinement. According to a postÂ by Jane Hamsher today;
The State Department, the FBI and just about every three-letter government agency has been investigating David and the other Boston hackers since they began organizing support for Bradley Manning last summer, with one witch hunt after another attempting to implicate them in one of Adrian Lamoâ€™s fabulist talesÂ of a physical disk hand-off from Manning to Wikileaks.Â The New York Times keeps printing that one, over and over again, with the Justice Department whispering in their earÂ and nothing but the word of the inconsistent Lamo for evidence.
David has been detained at the airport, his computer seized and held for months with no explanation. The McCarthy-esque actions of the security agencies has terrified all of these idealistic young people.Â It is exceptionally admirable that David and others persist in supporting Bradley Manning despite it all.
Â Michael Whitney reported this afternoon on Fire Dog Lake about the detention of Blogger Jane Hamsher and David House.
At roughly 1:00 pm, upon driving onto the base at Quantico, David House and blogger Jane Hamsher were detained by military guards. House, who is on the Quantico Brigâ€™s visitation list, has been visiting Bradley Manning in confinement since last September.
In December 2010, House came forward with testimony that he witnessed a deterioration in Manningâ€™s physical and mental state due to the conditions of Manningâ€™s solitary confinement. House traveled to the Quantico brig to check up on Bradleyâ€™s well-being after a week in which Manningâ€™s lawyer filed an Article 138 complaint over Manningâ€™s mistreatment at Quantico. House and Hamsher also planned to deliver a 42,000-signature strong petitionÂ calling for an end to the inhumane conditions that Manning is being held. Upon arriving at the main entrance at Quantico, House and Hamsher were stopped and detained by military police who provided no explanation for detainment aside from a statement from one MP that his orders to detain had â€œcome from the top.â€ Read the rest of his post HERE.
In Hamsher’s post following today’s incident she wrote:
There is no doubt in my mind that the primary objective of everything that happened today was to keep Bradley Manning from having the company of his only remaining visitor. The MPs told us they were ordered to do this, the brass showed up to make sure that they did, and they held us until 2:50 by repeatedly asking for information they already had whenever we asked to leave.
Visiting hours at the brig end at 3pm, and donâ€™t begin again until the next weekend. Itâ€™s a half hour walk from the front gate to the brig, and although they have allowed David to walk before, they wouldnâ€™t let him do it this time. They said heâ€™d have to catch a cab and come back on the base, but they wouldnâ€™t release him to do that until 2:50.
This is just wrong. There is no excuse for this behavior. two days before President Barack Obama reports to us the State of the Union, it appears that the true state of our union is one where civil rights and common sense on longer exist. Please forward this story on to your family and friends. Many, including myself before today, have no idea that this crap is happening.
Read the remainder of Jane Hansher’s post Goal of Quantico Incident Was To Abuse Bradley Manning and Intimidate David House.