Obama tries for total internet censorship via precedence from the Manning caseSubmitted by Ian56 on Sun, 07/28/2013 - 02:08
What Fein said in those closing arguments was absolutely chilling.
“Pfc. Manning was not a humanist; he was a hacker,” Major Fein noted.
“He was not a whistle-blower. He was a traitor, a traitor who understood the value of compromised information in the hands of the enemy and took deliberate steps to ensure that they, along with the world, received it.”
The quote is scary.
Critics of this case have warned that a Manning conviction of “aiding the enemy” would criminalize journalism. Even here in this quote, Fein alludes to journalists as being "the hands of the enemy."
As the New York Times explains:
"As the trial has moved toward its conclusion, the more philosophical questions confronting [Col. Denise Lind] are re-emerging center stage — including whether WikiLeaks played a journalistic role and whether providing information to the anti-secrecy group was any different, for legal purposes, from providing it to a traditional news outlet."
It is believed that a guilty verdict for aiding the enemy would establish a government precedent that giving information to an outlet that publishes it online is the same as handing it over to an enemy, the Times adds.
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Obama steps up his war on the press
The part of the First Amendment that prohibits “abridging the freedom … of the press” is now up against the wall, as the Obama administration continues to assault the kind of journalism that can expose government secrets.
Last Friday the administration got what it wanted—an ice-cold chilling effect—from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled on the case of New York Times reporter James Risen. The court “delivered a blow to investigative journalism in America by ruling that reporters have no First Amendment protection that would safeguard the confidentiality of their sources in the event of a criminal trial,” the Guardian reported.
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