George Orwell wrote: “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.”
A true journalist’s job is to expose government wrongdoing and propaganda, skewer hypocrites, and speak for those with no voice. And wage war against mankind’s two worst scourges: Nationalism and religious bigotry. Not to lick the boots of government.
I’ve always felt kinship for free thinkers, rebels, and heretics.
That’s why I am drawn to the plight of Pte. Bradley Manning who apparently believed Ernest Hemingway’s dictum: “Never think that war, no matter how necessary, nor how justified, is not a crime.”
The 22-year-old U.S. Army intelligence analyst caused a worldwide furor by releasing to WikiLeaks secret military logs that exposed ugly truths about the brutal conflict in Afghanistan, including widespread killing of civilians.
To again quote Orwell: “During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”
Manning also released a suppressed tape of a U.S. Army helicopter gunship killing two Reuters journalists and a civilian.
A civilian hacker, employed by some shadowy U.S. government intelligence “contractor” spying on the Internet turned Manning in.