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An intellectually honest constitutional originalist would need to grapple with the true context of

the second amendment, which is the Founders' hatred of standing armies. This is codified somewhat in the original document, at Article I, Section 8:

... The Congress shall have Power ... To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years ...

The citizen militia, referenced in the second amendment, was the Founders' answer to the lack of a standing army: it was at once the answer to the threat of external invasion and the answer to the threat of a tyrannical usurper

Until WWII, the US had no significant standing army. However, the experience of the world wars, and the rise of the modern totalitarian states, as well as the national security doctrines associated with atomic weapons, were widely understood as forcing America to rethink traditions against permanent military readiness and to establishment a permanent armaments industry

If, therefore, we really want to talk about the second amendment, it may make sense, as a long-term project, to try to recall the Founders' concern about a standing army and the post-WWII development of a massively-armed America, as part of the puzzle

The Chance for Peace, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1953
... Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some fifty miles of concrete pavement. We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. This is, I repeat, the best way of life to be found on the road the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron ...

Military-Industrial Complex Speech, Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961
... A huge increase in newer elements of our defense; development of unrealistic programs to cure every ill in agriculture; a dramatic expansion in basic and applied research -- these and many other possibilities, each possibly promising in itself, may be suggested as the only way to the road we wish to travel ... Good judgment seeks balance and progress; lack of it eventually finds imbalance and frustration ... Our military organization today bears little relation to that known by any of my predecessors in peacetime, or indeed by the fighting men of World War II or Korea ... But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions ... This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications ...

Posted by struggle4progress | Tue Dec 18, 2012, 05:27 PM (0 replies)

IIRC the elements of the crime require merely that Manning engaged

in activities that he knew, or should have known, could provide intelligence to an enemy, either directly or indirectly, whether or not the enemy actually benefited

A spokesman for the Taliban told Britain’s Channel 4 News on Thursday that the insurgent group is scouring classified American military documents posted online by the group WikiLeaks for information to help them find and “punish” Afghan informers ...

July 30, 2010, 11:58 am
Updated | 12:36 p.m.
Taliban Study WikiLeaks to Hunt Informants

A torrent of leaked U.S. diplomatic cables obtained by the anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks has been published in the last few days, with at least 170 of them naming sources whose identity was meant to be protected, according to an analysis of the documents by CNN ...

Flood of WikiLeaks cables includes identities of dozens of informants
By Tim Lister and Emily Smith
August 31, 2011 8:33 a.m. EDT

... A reporter worried that Assange would risk killing Afghans who had co-operated with American forces if he put US secrets online without taking the basic precaution of removing their names. "Well, they're informants," Assange replied. "So, if they get killed, they've got it coming to them. They deserve it." ...

The treachery of Julian Assange
The WikiLeaks founder, far from being a champion of freedom, is an active danger to the real seekers of truth

Nick Cohen
The Observer, Saturday 17 September 2011

... I talked to Assange by phone a few times and heard out his complaints. He was angry that we declined to link our online coverage of the War Logs to the WikiLeaks Web site, a decision we made because we feared — rightly, as it turned out — that its trove would contain the names of low-level informants and make them Taliban targets ...

Dealing With Assange and the WikiLeaks Secrets
Published: January 26, 2011
Posted by struggle4progress | Sat Dec 15, 2012, 10:24 AM (1 replies)

Julian Assange autobiography: why he didn't want it published

Memoir looked set to make the WikiLeaks founder and publisher Canongate a fortune – then the arguments started
David Leigh, James Ball and Esther Addley
Thursday 22 September 2011 16.47 EDT

... To complete the picture of acrimony, Assange went on to publicly denounce his former lawyers, claiming they were sitting on his publishers' advance of £412,000, which they were holding to cover their legal fees. Assange's allegations of "extreme overcharging" were rapidly denied by the London media firm of Finers, Stephens, Innocent (FSI) ...

A book deal was drawn up and clinched by the London literary agent Caroline Michel, under which Canongate, the innovative Scottish firm run by Jamie Byng, and the US publishers Knopf agreed to pay £600,000 and $800,000 respectively for the rights, with Knopf paying $250,000 (£162,000) in advance. Canongate also agreed to pay upfront O'Hagan's ghostwriting fee, believed to exceed £100,000.

Assange already seemed to have the possibility in mind that he might withdraw from the deal. Sources close to the Canongate negotiations say he demanded a deal that he could keep £125,000 of the advance whatever happened. Byng laughed this out of court, responding according to correspondence seen by the Guardian: "We cannot accept … the idea that regardless of whether Julian delivers (or regardless of what he delivers or regardless of when he delivers), he will keep £125,000."

Canongate also negotiated a crucial loophole in the contract, which it was eventually to invoke ... "If … the manuscript has not been delivered by the prescribed date or its final form is not acceptable to the Publisher, the Publisher has the right to decide whether to continue to publish the Work. If the Publisher decides to continue to publish the Work the Proprietor agrees that all typescript or notes relevant to the said Work shall belong to the Publisher" ...


Posted by struggle4progress | Sat Dec 8, 2012, 01:53 PM (0 replies)

The Assange-Canongate saga is really quite informative

Canongate seems to have advanced Assange perhaps half a million pounds to produce an autobiography, after which Assange began to work with their ghostwriter and sat for the cover photo. But then Assange changed his mind, though he never returned the advance, as he had transferred to his lawyers, who had already spent it fighting his extradition to Sweden. So Canongate published anyway, which produced vintage fulmination from Assange: "Canongate owes me money. I have not seen a single cent from this book. Canongate owes me hundreds of thousands of pounds." In the end, the saga ruined Canongate's bottom line that year. Sadly, this flexibly shifty behavior is not usual for Assange, as the book witnesses also: for example, in the book we are told that W accused Assange of rape because he didn't call her from his train: "it has already turned out to be the most expensive call I didn't make."

Here are some links:

On 20 December 2010, Julian Assange signed a contract with Canongate Books to write a book – part memoir, part manifesto – for publication in 2011. At the time, Julian said, ‘I hope this book will become one of the unifying documents of our generation. In this highly personal work, I explain our global struggle to force a new relationship between the people and their governments’ ... After reading the first draft of the book that was delivered at the end of March, Julian declared, ‘All memoir is prostitution’. On 7 June 2011, with 38 publishing houses around the world committed to releasing the book, Julian told us he wanted to cancel his contract. However, he had already signed his advance over to his lawyers to settle his legal bills. We have decided to honour that contract and to publish. Once the advance has been earned out, we will continue to honour the contract and pay Julian royalties ...

Statement from Canongate Books <21 September 2011>
link to pdf: http://www.canongate.tv/media/pdf/Statement%20from%20Canongate%20Books.pdf
hattip: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/foreign-affairs-defense/wikisecrets/unauthorized-assange-autobiography-leaked-by-publisher/

... In late December Mr Assange accepted an advance – reportedly worth hundreds of thousands of pounds – from Canongate and New York publisher Alfred A Knopf ... Canongate went on to sell the rights to a further 38 publishing houses around the world ... But the relationship soured soon after the first draft of the manuscript was delivered to him in late March ... Only a week earlier he had posed for a photo shoot and cleared the portrait that now graces the book's front cover ... Mr Assange's decision to renege on his contract plunged Canongate into a crisis ... He was given two months to work on the manuscript but deadlines went by without any further work ...

Assange: The truth will out
How did Julian Assange's autobiography become unauthorised? To introduce exclusive extracts from the WikiLeaks figurehead's memoir, Jerome Taylor recounts the behind-the-scenes battle for publication


... I met a woman called W—— at a press conference. I remember she was wearing a nice pink sweater. After an awards party, I met up with W—— and went back with her to her house in Enkopping ... My behaviour sounds cold, and no doubt was, which is a failing of mine, but not a crime. I'd spent long enough at A——'s and could see that it would be a bad idea to stay longer. Remember, I was feeling especially paranoid ... The thing with W—— was going nowhere, either. She was a little vague, but the night in Enkopping was fun and I thought we'd had a perfectly nice time, albeit one that probably wouldn't be repeated. She didn't seem too fussed herself, as we had breakfast together the next morning and then rode together on her bicycle to the railway station. She kindly paid for my ticket – my bank card was still on the blink, though I'm always skint – and she kissed me goodbye and asked me to call her from the train. I didn't do that, and it has already turned out to be the most expensive call I didn't make. At one point, I did have a short conversation with W——, when she called me, but the phone was low on charge and it ran out while we were still talking ... After a strange few days of contact with the women, one of whom said she wanted me to do an STD test, I needed some time and space to myself ...

Julian Assange: 'I did not rape those women'
In the first extract from the book, Julian Assange gives his version of the background to accusations of sexual assault that have led to his battle against extradition to Sweden


... The company made an operating loss of £368,367 compared with a profit of more than £1m in 2010 ... In a report, the company's chairman Sir Christopher Bland said the loss was "largely attributable to Julian Assange's failure to deliver the book he had contracted to produce, and we were unable to obtain repayment from him of Canongate's substantial advance, which had to be written off". The advance is said to be more than £500,000 although Canongate gave no details in its financial statement ...

5 October 2012
Canongate Books blames Assange for loss
Posted by struggle4progress | Sat Dec 8, 2012, 01:42 PM (0 replies)

Julian Assange: the fugitive

Julian Assange has been holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy for six months. In a rare interview, we ask the WikiLeaks founder about reports of illness, paranoia – and if he'll ever come out
Decca Aitkenhead
Friday 7 December 2012 17.58 EST

... Assange talks in the manner of a man who has worked out that the Earth is round, while everyone else is lumbering on under the impression that it is flat. It makes you sit up and listen, but raises two doubts about how to judge his thesis. There's no debate that Assange knows more about the subject than almost anyone alive, and the case he makes is both compelling and scary. But there's a question mark over his own credentials as a crusader against abuses of power, and another over his frame of mind. After all the dramas of the last two and a half years, it's hard to read his book without wondering, is Assange a hypocrite – and is he a reliable witness?

Prodigiously gifted, he is often described as a genius, but he has the autodidact's tendency to come across as simultaneously credulous and a bit slapdash. He can leap from one country to another when characterising surveillance practices, as if all nations were analogous, and refers to the communications data bill currently before the UK parliament in such alarmist terms that I didn't even recognise the legislation and thought he must be talking about a bill I'd never heard of. "A bill promulgated by the Queen, no less!" he emphasises, as if the government could propose any other variety, before implying that it will give the state the right to read every email and listen in on every mobile phone call, which is simply not the case. It's the age-old dilemma: are we being warned by a uniquely clear-sighted Cassandra, or by a paranoid conspiracy theorist whose current circumstances only confirm all his suspicions of sinister secret state forces at work? ...

I try twice to ask how a campaigner for free speech can condone Ecuador's record on press controls, but I'm not sure he hears, because he is off into a coldly furious tirade against the Guardian. The details of the dispute are of doubtful interest to a wider audience, but in brief: WikiLeaks worked closely with both the Guardian and the New York Times in 2010 to publish huge caches of confidential documents, before falling out very badly with both. He maintains that the Guardian broke its word and behaved disgracefully, but he seems to have a habit of falling out with erstwhile allies. Leaving aside the two women in Sweden who were once his admirers and now allege rape and sexual assault, things also ended badly with Canongate, a small publisher that paid a large advance for his ghosted autobiography, only to have Assange pull out of the project after reading the first draft. It went ahead and published anyway, but lost an awful lot of money. Several staff walked out of WikiLeaks in 2010, including a close colleague, Daniel Domscheit-Berg, who complained that Assange was behaving "like some kind of emperor or slave trader" ...

"Oh my God!" he interrupts angrily, raising his voice. "These people, we told them not to do that. They were wrong to do it, to violate the author's copyright like that." Did he ever consider giving his advance back? "Canongate owes me money. I have not seen a single cent from this book. Canongate owes me hundreds of thousands of pounds." But if he hasn't seen any money, it's because the advance was deposited in Assange's lawyers' bank account, to go towards paying their fees. Then the lawyers complained that the advance didn't cover the fees, and Assange fell out with them, too ...


Posted by struggle4progress | Sat Dec 8, 2012, 12:11 AM (11 replies)

Top EU official tells Julian Assange: 'Just go to Sweden and answer the questions'

... Cecilia Malmström, the European Commissioner for Home Affairs, said Mr Assange, 41, who is sheltering in the Ecuadorean embassy in London, should “answer the questions” about his alleged attacks on two women.

She also dismissed his claim that he would be extradited to the US, saying that she did not “believe for a minute” that it would happen and that it was only a “purely theoretical” risk.

“I’m not engaged in this, I know there are talks. But he’s accused of rape, of sexual harassment and if he’s innocent, which he might be — I don’t know — why doesn’t he just go and answer the questions? ..." ...

... Ms Malmström, who comes from Sweden, dismissed his claims about the threat from American prosecutors. “He is asked to come to Sweden because he’s accused of some crimes. He stays in the embassy. For the moment there is no solution. Whether Sweden would extradite him to the US or not, that is up to the Swedish authorities to decide. I don’t think that would happen. That’s purely theoretical” ...

Posted by struggle4progress | Mon Dec 3, 2012, 12:45 PM (192 replies)

Wikileaks suspect Bradley Manning chokes up at hearing

... Manning’s state of mind when he was transferred from Kuwait to Quantico in July, 2010 had a major impact on the rest of his detention there. Required to fill out a questionnaire when he arrived at Quantico, Manning said he sarcastically wrote, “always planning, never acting,” when asked if he ever had suicidal thoughts.

He said he’d forgotten about the entry when brig staff raised it with him at a meeting on Jan. 21, 2011, when he was seeking a downgrade from the Prevention of Injury status he had been in since arriving from Kuwait.

But Fein asked how that could be possible given that three days before he had openly spoken about the written comments with brig officials during an incident that led to his being placed on suicide risk watch ...

A sheepish Manning told Fein, “I’d forgotten about that” ...

Posted by struggle4progress | Sat Dec 1, 2012, 11:42 AM (0 replies)

Bradley Manning was kept in restrictive custody to prevent suicide, officer testifies

By David Dishneau, The Associated Press

9:08 p.m. EST, November 28, 2012

An Army private accused of sending reams of classified U.S. documents to the secret-spilling website WikiLeaks was kept in tight pretrial confinement partly because another prisoner had recently committed suicide, the former security chief at the Quantico, Va., Marine Corps base testified Wednesday.

Marine Col. Robert Oltman appeared as a witness on the second day of a pretrial hearing for Pfc. Bradley Manning, who is seeking dismissal of all charges, claiming his confinement in the Quantico brig amounted to illegal punishment.

Oltman and others have testified that psychiatrists who examined Manning at Quantico repeatedly recommended that his conditions be eased. But Oltman, whose command included the brig, said he was skeptical about at least one of those recommendations because another detainee had killed himself in December 2009 after his custody status was reduced based upon the advice of the same doctor, Navy Capt. William Hocter, the psychiatrist assigned to the brig.

"He didn't have the strongest credibility with me with regards to his recommendations," Oltman said under questioning by civilian defense attorney David Coombs ...

Posted by struggle4progress | Wed Nov 28, 2012, 09:57 PM (2 replies)

"... Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is set to appear in Cambridge via a video link –

from the Ecuadorian embassy in London ... He is to speak on a topic yet to be revealed followed by a question and answer session with Cambridge Union members on November 27 ... "
Assange to address Union Society - by video from embassy
Jordan Day
Published: 14/11/2012 08:22 - Updated: 15/11/2012 09:58

"... The CUSU Women's Campaign have launched a petition to revoke Julian Assange's invitation to speak at the Cambridge Union. Assange is currently scheduled to speak at the Union from the Ecuadorian Embassy in London via videolink on November 27th and is currently facing extradition to Sweden to face trial for sexual assault if he steps foot on British territory. The petition, which is open to anyone to sign and has already received over 400 signatures, criticises the Union for 'riding on a tide of publicity created from the traumatic experiences of rape survivors to raise the profile of their own name' ..."
Update: CUSU launch petition to stop Assange speaking at the Union
CUSU Women's Campaign claims that Assange's invitation to speak at the Cambridge Union "trivialises rape"
by Charlotte Keith, Alice Udale-Smith
Wednesday 14th November 2012, 16:15 GMT

"... A CUSU Women’s Campaign spokeswoman said: 'We are deeply disappointed the current committee of Cambridge Union Society has decided to re-invite Assange. Yet again, the Cambridge Union Society is enabling the rebuilding of the public persona of an alleged rapist. By inviting Assange the Cambridge Union Society are colluding in the horrific silence and shame around rape' ..."
Protest planned over Julian Assange appearance
Published: 15/11/2012 08:14 - Updated: 15/11/2012 09:58

"Mr Assange has cancelled his upcoming Q&A session at the Union due to technical issues with the video feed at the Ecuadorian Embassy. Because the Embassy does not have a strong internet connection, the only way to produce the live 2-way video feed was by relying on two broadcast vans. The broadcast agency scheduled to handle the feed is no longer able to, and no other broadcast agencies which may be interested have the capability and availability on the 27th ..."
Julian Assange's Q&A Cancelled
Added 1 day 13 hours ago

"It has recently been announced that Mr Assange will be delivering the keynote address via video link to the ConventionCamp conference in Hanover, Germany, on 27th November. This announcement comes only one day after his spokesperson claimed that his Q&A at the Cambridge Union Society must be cancelled because his preferred broadcaster, Russia Today, was unable to arrange the technical aspects of the video link. The Union Society is disappointed in Mr Assange’s apparent dishonesty. We would have hoped that any individual or institution claiming to represent the interests of free speech and openness would be more straightforward in their dealings. We apologise to members for the confusion this has caused and the doubts that have arisen following Mr Assange’s misleading statement ..."
Julian Assange's Q&A Cancelled -- UPDATE
Added 1 day 13 hours ago

Posted by struggle4progress | Fri Nov 23, 2012, 12:06 AM (0 replies)

I'll guess you just didn't read the FOIA release carefully. The investigation in this case concerned

a women who, contrary to order, began to frequent the Wikileaks website and who, contrary to advice, repeatedly attended Assange's trial. She also began to use screen names indicating sympathy with Assange, Wikileaks, and Manning; she further regularly posted pro-Assange Twitter messages; and in addition, she associated with some pro-Assange and/or pro-Manning groups in the UK. She also reportedly exhibited some psychological symptoms during this period. Since she had SIPR NET access and a Top Secret security clearance, there was some concern, and an investigation was launched, into whether she had communicated with the enemy. She was denied further access to restricted information. The investigation apparently produced no evidence that she had leaked anything

The investigation actually began due to a complaint that she did not follow a lawful order (the 11 January 2011 memorandum), and the natural reading of that fact is simply that the military had directed all personnel to avoid contact with Wikileaks in the aftermath of Manning's arrest; that would explain why she was advised not to attend Assange's trial, for example

Thomas A. Ferguson, Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, wrote the 11 Feb 2011 memorandum, directing DoD personnel to "follow established procedures for accessing classified information only through authorized means." The beginning page of the actual FOIA release (after the two page FOIA cover letter) states clearly:
... SUBJECT allegedly visited the website Wikileaks in violation of a Memorandum From the Undersecretary of Defense, dated 11 Jan 11, which violated Article 92, Failure to Obey, UCMJ ...
This is simply because: accessing the website Wikileaks is not an established procedure for accessing classified information through authorized means. Such access would contradict the lawful general order or regulation embodied in Ferguson's 11 January 2011

Thomas A. Ferguson
Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence


Ferguson's 11 Feb 2011 memorandum is available as pdf from the FAS site:
... It is the responsibility of every DoD employee and contractor to protect classified information and to follow established procedures for accessing classified information only through authorized means ...


From beginning page of the actual FOIA release (after the two page FOIA cover letter):
... SUBJECT allegedly visited the website Wikileaks in violation of a Memorandum From the Undersecretary of Defense, dated 11 Jan 11, which violated Article 92, Failure to Obey, UCMJ ...

Any person subject to this chapter who—
(1) violates or fails to obey any lawful general order or regulation;
(2) having knowledge of any other lawful order issued by a member of the armed forces, which it is his duty to obey, fails to obey the order; or
(3) is derelict in the performance of his duties;
shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.

10 USC § 892 - Art. 92. Failure to obey order or regulation

It should be clear, to anyone who reads the entire dozen pages, that the actual concern, and the actual point of the investigation, was whether she posed a security risk and whether unauthorized releases had occurred. Her financial transactions were scrutinized for that reason; she was asked whether she had released any information; persons, who knew her, were asked whether she might release any information; and she discussed with investigators, methods by which information could be released:

... <b6 b7c> believed SUBJECT would not divulge any classification to any unauthorized individuals ... SUBJECT had access to SIPR but <b6 b7c> did not believe SUBJECT looked on SIPR often ... <b6 b7c> believed SUBJECT had the potential to leak classified information ... Lt Col <b6 b7c> explained that in light of SUBJECT's related feeling towards USAF and military service, he intended to suspend SUBJECT's access to SIPR ... <b6 b7c> was unaware if SUBJECT traveled outside the UK ... <b6 b7c> did not think SUBJECT was a National Security risk ... SUBJECT's access to classified information has since been revoked ... SUBJECT explained that at no time was she ever asked to provide or supply any classified FOUO information ... SUBJECT stated that she was not subverted ... SUBJECT pointed out that SIPRnet access was not closely monitored ... SUBJECT reiterated that she had never disclosed any classified or for official use only (FOUO) information and was never approached to provide any military information ...

The matter was finally closed because there was no evidence she had released any information to unauthorized persons
Posted by struggle4progress | Thu Oct 11, 2012, 12:44 PM (2 replies)
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