Posts Tagged ‘leaks’

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By @anarchyroll

What do you call a transgender person in the military who provides Wikileaks with access to one of the largest data collections of the US military to ever be made public?

Her name is Chelsea Manning. When she first made world-wide headlines she was known as Bradley Manning. A person at the center of one of the biggest news stories of all time. Manning will finally walk out of military prison this spring. Barack Obama commuted the sentence on one of his final days in office.

There is something about giving up ones freedom to expose not simply the truth, but the hidden truth. The hidden truth that has been hidden purposefully. The hidden truth that has been hidden purposefully by people in positions of power and authority.

We all see injustice in our lives. Living life means to witness injustice. There is so much good in the world, but there is also a lot of bad. To stare the good in face and actually do something about it is commendable. To do something knowing there will be a negative personal consequence is admirable. When those consequences are solitary confinement in military prison, well, now we’re talking about a whole new level.

Cowardice is the standard in the developed world. Bravery is showcased in clothing choices and mate selection. Passive aggressive no longer aptly fits the abeyant nature of the modern condition.

Many were too scared to even look at some of the video material Manning leaked. Many more don’t have the conviction to read much of the other material manning leaked that shows the true nature and motives of modern warfare. It makes sense that many of those same people would reflect their self-hatred for those failures of character onto someone who has them in spades and is one of those millennial cross dressers to boot.

There are many people who don’t even want to look another person in the eye on the bus, at the coffee shop, or waiting in line at the grocery store. Are people like that going to stare down solitary confinement in a military prison in the face, and still take action to serve the greater good in the face of being called a traitor by their government and fellow (hu)man?

We accept many wrongs as the norm. Chelsea Manning refused to do this. The price for consent or defiance of these norms is the same, freedom. The norm is to accept our gender whether we are congruent with it or not. The norm is to accept what the Military Industrial Complex does regardless of cost or collateral damage. Both of these norms are very powerful and entrenched.

Just as passive aggressive is no longer a suitable term for confrontation in the modern condition, brave is not a suitable term for what Chelsea Manning has done for the global village. A living, breathing dark knight. Hated and maligned for being very ordinary yet willing to do the extraordinary without care for the personal cost she must pay and has paid.

Not a martyr, a harbinger. A symbol of the future. A future where we don’t accept or stay silent about what is wrong regardless of perceived norms. A symbol of hope. Hope for every confused coward that walks through life in a daze that they can tangibly change themselves and the world. An icon of the millennial generation that desperately needs heroes of substance over style.

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by @anarchyroll
2/17/2014

Journalism made front page news today across the world as opposed to celebrity gossip and the weather. The three reporters/journalists whom Edward Snowden leaked the NSA documents to received a prestigious award today. Glenn Greenwald, Ewen MacAskill, and Laura Poitras who met with Snowden in Hong Kong in June of 2013 will all receive the George Polk Award in Journalism.

As an aspiring journalist, it is great to see great reporters get their due. They will receive this award in the heart of Manhattan, the media and financial capital of America. These three are role models for me. Greenwald is as much of a living hero for me as is possible. I hope to meet and work with them all in the future.

Being awarded and rewarded for their work rather than shunned or arrested as some in the US and UK government would like shows that what these journalists did in blowing the lid off the NSA mass surveillance program was the right thing to do. Barack Obama has been forced to take action due to the public uproar that has followed Snowden’s whistleblowing. There are measures to cut off water supply to NSA operation centers in Utah and Maryland.  The tide has shifted, much like same-sex marriage, and marijuana legalization, a cultural shift has occurred. We are witnessing history being made before our very eyes every day in America. There is a 1960s feel to the cultural upheaval going on.

I hope to cover and contribute to it beyond just this blog in the future. I thank Glenn Greenwald, Ewen MacAskill, and Laura Poitras for their fearlessness, patriotism, and journalistic integrity in taking the shadow government of the United States and United Kingdom head on. Exposing their shadow to the sanitizing light of public transparency. I am grateful to them. Keep up the good work, and take a deep breath in the knowledge you are fulfilling your purpose on this planet. You have all earned it.