back to article UK gov 'draws US attention' to Bradley Manning concerns

The UK government has formally raised concerns with the USA regarding the treatment of the imprisoned US soldier Bradley Manning, who is charged with various offences under military regulations and the US criminal code. It is widely believed - though not proven - that Manning was the source of much of the classified US …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    Gary McKinnon?

    In for the same treatment? no way can they extradite him now.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not really.

      Manning's treatment is due to the fact that he's military, not civilian. Break the law as a civvie and you get treated relatively well. Break military regulations while in the military, and you'll find you have vanishingly few 'rights'.

      1. Throatwobbler Mangrove

        not quite

        No trial/court-martial having taken place, no breaking of civilian or military law has been proven. Hence the concern over supposed security and safety measures which a) appear punitive (extrajudicial punishment) and b) would look a lot like cruel and unusual punishment if they were indeed punitive (Eighth Amendment).

      2. Lars Silver badge

        And why would that be accepable

        .The post is required, and must contain letters.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          ..why would you expect the U.S. government to stick to their own laws? They don't stick to international ones...

        2. laird cummings

          Uniform Code of Military Jusitice and supporting regulations.

          Go read 'em. Many of you are clearly grossly ignorant and in need of a bit of eduction on the subject.

          Manning willingly and voluntarily raised his right hand and swore, so help him God, to obey those regulations. He's got *zero* kick now, and this BS from the UK amounts to stirring the pot and meddling of a pernicious nature. Time for Parliment to stick its beak back in its own musiness.

      3. F111F

        Military Rights

        Wrong. Under the UCMJ (Uniform Code of Military Justice), Private Manning has a variety of rights, and they don't "vanish". While military members may not have exactly equal rights as civilians, they have many of the basic ones. Under the UCMJ, defendents have rights to silence, an attorney, be informed of the nature of the charges, be told of their rights, trials by either jury or judge, automatic appeals for certain punishments, etc.

        Manning's treatment while being detained is consistent with other suicide watch procedures at civilian prisons, including removal of anything that could be used to cut, hang, or choke himself to death. That means nudity, constant surveillance, and sometimes not even a blanket or mattress to sleep on. If prisoners are deemed likely to self-inflict wounds, they can be restrained as well.

        Final words to the UK Parliament: Butt out.

        1. Anonymous Coward

          RE "Final words to the UK Parliament: Butt out."

          "Butt out"

          Of another countries business?

          Coming from America?

          HA HA HA HA.

        2. Chad H.

          @ f111f

          Yet it seems each psychologist that's looked at him has come to the same Conclusion - not a suicide risk. Yet the folks running the brig have decided to use their non-professional judgement rather than the professionals.

          It's an abuse of process, pure and simple.

          1. laird cummings

            non-professional judgement..?

            You've got it just backwards - The professionals at managing prisioners have, in their professional judgement, determined that Manning is a suicide risk. A non-professional non-expert on prisoner management has floated an opinon that is contrary.

            I wouldn't ask a psychiatrist to tell me how to keep prisioners alive, and I wouldn't ask a guard how to treat a prisoner's neurosis. Why would you trust a non-expert's opnion on a topic outside their expertise?

            1. Graham Marsden

              @f111f and laird cumings

              Just try thinking for a moment: If you were kept under the regime that Bradley Manning is and you weren't a suicide risk at the start of it, you'd sure as hell be one by the end of it!

            2. Chad H.

              @ laird

              It's the psychologists JOB to determine if he's a suicide risk. The brig authorities are supposed to act on that advice.

        3. Mark 65


          With regards to his treatment because he is viewed as a suicide risk - does it not occur to both you and his captors that he may be considered a suicide risk primarily due to the underhand way in which he is being treated?

      4. Naughtyhorse

        break the law as a civilian and you end up in gitmo

        thats all....

        actually theres no need to break the law, luckily for manning he's not of a brown skinned persuasion

      5. anarchic-teapot

        Break the law as a civvie and you get treated relatively well


        Two words.

        Guantanamo Bay.

  2. Paul Johnston

    My Guess

    Only a guess but whoever did this is probably proud of being a US citizen but not proud of what the US is doing. Therefore they are hardly liable to try and get out of it by becoming the citizen of another country. As I say it's only speculation but as an example Solzhenitsyn was very proud of being Russian but did not shirk from drawing attention to what he saw as its wrong doings.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      US protection

      If he abandoned his US citizenship then he would be in much deeper trouble than he is currently.

      1. elderlybloke

        US protection

        Dear Anon.Coward, Tuesday 5th April 2011 13:38 GMT

        Absolutely correct, The Americans consider anyone who is not an American, has no rights and they can be treated like a mad dog and be "lawful" in their minds.

  3. revdjenk


    I sent an email message to one of my Senators (Rockefeller) asking if these circumstances concerning Manning's treatment were true. Haven't heard anything...

    mine's the one with empty pockets...

  4. Joe 3
    Thumb Down

    Stasi methods

    Sleep deprivation was one of the East German Stasi's favourite methods of mentally torturing their suspects, and "prisoner safety" was one of their favourite excuses for waking them up every five minutes in the night.

    Sounds like the US government has drifted somewhat from its founding principles... again, a bit like East Germany! It seems that Markus Wolf gave them some handy tips when they hired him in 2004.

    1. TimNevins

      Wolf at the door

      Interestingly enough, before his death, Stasi number 2 Markus Wolf was linked to the US government...

      1. Paul Johnston
        Black Helicopters

        Yes but don't think it's actually true!

        Can anyone find any evidence that he actually worked for the US. None of the obituaries I can find mention it (BBC, NY Times, TimesOnline, The Economist or even Wikipedia) The prisonplanet article seems to be the only one and that only claims "On a radio appearance earlier today Martin stated that the admission that Wolf would be hired was made in a BBC radio interview given by the former head of the KGB, General Yevgeni Primakov."

        If you take a look at the website you can make an educated guess what its stance is on such things as "flourine in water" and "the truth behind 9-11". The bookshop sells such tomes as "The Resistance Manifesto " , " Bloodlines of the Illuminati" and "Don't Vaccinate Before You Educate!"

        Not found the "Turner Diaries" but you can get that from Amazon! Oh update it is there "Results 41 - 41 for Turner Diaries. (0.07 seconds) "

        Sorry everyone think this needs a bit more research!

        1. TimNevins


          "...what its stance is on such things as "flourine in water""

          Is this enough evidence for you?

          1. Paul Johnston

            Dr Strangelove

            Don't you remember the bit in Dr Strangelove?

  5. Anonymous Coward

    Americaaaa fuck yeah

    I remember back in the 80's as a kid I looked up to the US as a beacon of progression and sound intent. I think many people did at that time. These days it's nothing more than a decaying toilet of moral perversion on a par with any tinpot African dictatorship. Total political corruption, media nothing more than propaganda, gross erosion of public freedom, concentration camps, regression into religiosity, financial oligarchy, competitiveness and callousness as virtue, the list goes on. It's a real shame. The "land of the free" has become a vile showcase for the very worst aspects of human nature.

    1. Sam Liddicott

      The USA is the envey of the un-free world

      The USA can do in public (and state in advance what they are going to do) what other oppressive regimes have to hide away and try to deny.

      The USA is the envy of all oppressive regimes.

    2. DF118

      Re: Americaaaa fuck yeah

      "...back in the 80's... ...beacon of progression..."

      "These days... ...toilet of moral perversion..."

      Thereby implying that the United States' attitude to the rest of the world has changed dramatically more than yours in the intervening decades.

  6. Swiss

    Truth, Justice and the American way......

    haha, The American way has nothing to do with Truth or Justice and more the attitude of do as I say not as I do or else.

    Manning is clearly being punished before he has even had the courtesy of a trial, I know little of the American way or their constitution, but even if only half the reports about Manning's treatment are true I do know that in any "Civilised" country this treatment would be just plain wrong.

    Rest of the world, "You can't treat Manning this way" - US* Gov "Yes we can"

    *US = Military abbreviation for Unserviceable

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No news here

    Manning is being treated the same as any other suicidal prisoner. He is not being mis-treated or singled out. None of the bleeding heart hype is going to change the court proceedings. if he's guilty, he'll be prosecuted and sentinced like every other criminal.

    1. Swiss

      No news maybe, however...

      Being ex UK Military I have taken part in Suicide watch during my career, the prisoner was not stripped naked, denied proper bedding nor was he woken during the night every 5 minutes.

      He was kept under constant close observation and afforded his basic human rights, something to which it would seem manning has so far been denied.

      As I said in my post I know little of the American way but to me Manning's treatment sounds a little too close to torture methods employed by uncivilised despot countries.

    2. Dahak

      Manning is being treated the same as any other suicidal prisoner

      He wasn't suicidal before this started and according to Quantico's in house psychiatric staff, isn't currently. Which is moderately impressive. He's also not on Suicide Watch since that requires medical advice that doesn't exist in this case. He's on POI.

      Most other suicidal prisoners are not simultaneously subjected to the stresses of Maximum security and POI despite being considered a model prisoner with no intention of suicide.

      So, no, he isn't being treated the same really.

      You might want to look at this

    3. steward

      Can you cite any laws about treatment of allegedly suicidal prisoners?

      Nothing in the UCMJ authorizes what is being done.

      On the contrary,


      No person, while being held for trial, may be subjected to punishment or penalty other than arrest or confinement upon the charges pending against him, nor shall the arrest or confinement imposed upon him be any more rigorous than the circumstances required to insure his presence, but he may be subjected to minor punishment during that period for infractions of discipline."

      For those unfamiliar with US legal terms, "insure his presence" means "can't break out of the jail."

      Source: an official US military site,

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Maybe someone could explain why he's in prison at all?

      Even servicemen undergoing court martial don't have to be in prison until the event, do they?

  8. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    1. steward

      Are you from Cardassia?

      You seem to adhere to Cardassian standards of jurisprudence: upon accusation, all persons are guilty, even though they get a trial where the decision is already made.

      Cardassian standards of jurisprudence are much different from Anglo-American standards of jurisprudence. Maybe if we ever invent warp drive you'd like to move to Cardassia; their culture seems to fit your desires.

    2. mhenriday

      Re : «Bradley Manning is a spy»

      «Regardless of how inept he is or that his handler was an androgynous little pipsqueak from Australia, he's a spy.» So-called «presumption of innocence» is widely accepted as an integral part of US jurisprudence (at least in speeches on solemn occasions). Given that Mr Manning has not confessed to any crime and no trial has been held, how can signature «Interceptor» pretend to know whether or not Manning is a spy - unless, of course, «s/he» was his handler ?...

      «He's a petulant mama's boy - oops, no, I can't say that since he physically attacked his mother and father! - who deserves to be in jail for the rest of his life.» Amazing the detailed «knowledge» of Manning's biography «Interceptor» claims to possess - is s/he a childhood friend ?...

      «Lock him up in supermax, let him play chess with the Walker family via snail-mail.» With or without the formality of a trial, «Interceptor» ?...

      «I for one do not give a single damn that he's on suicide watch and that it might be "embarrassing" to him.» And mutatis mutandi, why does «Interceptor» feel that readers of El Reg should «give a single damn» for «her/his» singular lack of concern ?...

      «Little cretin [is «Interceptor» so well acquainted with the perinatal state of Mr Manning's thyroid hormones, that s/he can diagnose such a condition ?] doesn't know what "cruel treatment" is, although the families of the people whose lives he may have endangered may well will when they get a "We regret to inform you that..." letter or visit from a Chaplain.»

      Does «Interceptor» here refer to the families of Iraqis or Afghanis killed by bombs dropped upon them by their NATO «protectors» ? Do they really get visits from chaplains regretting these deaths ? If so, these chaplains must be busy chaps, indeed, given that in Iraq alone, more than a million persons have died prematurely as a result of the war Messrs Bush, Cheney, Blair, et alia vouchsafed them....

      «Screw Bradley Manning.» The return of the repressed ? Perhaps this - unfulfilled and presumably unfulfillable - desire on «Interceptor»'s part constitutes a clue to his/her ire ?...


    3. Chad H.

      F he is a spy.

      Then he's a spy working for regular Americans.

      He's blown the top off a lot of what the us government does behind it's citizens backs, including secret unauthorised wars (Yemen).

      Do the American people not have the right to know what their govvernment does or who they are at war with?

      (what do I know... I'm just a parole in Airstrip one).

  9. Anonymous Coward

    Conservative MP Julian Lewis... Manning did a very terrible thing indeed.

    Because the State is always right and to challenge it is heresy. And we still burn witches for that these days.

    US lapdogs - people who love to be seen to be doing the right thing, even when they're doing anything but.

  10. Mark 65


    " The State Department took note and agreed to convey the information to all those dealing with the case."

    That went straight in the old cylindrical filing cabinet then

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This makes no sense

    It looks like Manning's lawyer is hoping public opinion based on hearsay nonsense will some how help his client escape prosecution. Not in this life time. He'll be lucky if he isn't shot for treason.

  12. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

    No one from the 'screw manning' camp in today? Shame.

    So, I don't have to respond to their usual bull... good...

    Americans, is it right that someone should be permitted to question orders, or even disobey them if they go against their conscience? Once an oath is taken, does that supercede *any* personal obligation, free will or choice thereafter?

    If you say 'Hell, no, of course they have to have their own recognisance!" then you must, by extension, have at least some sympathy for Bradley Manning. He, like others before him, may well see himself as a true patriot, and you should be proud of him for at least considering his nations action in the light of personal freedom, and you should be proud of your nation for maintaining laws that allow him such freedom. THAT is what America should be. Don't get me wrong, Manning *may* have committed a crime and a trial should be held to determine that; it's the extra-judicial punishment (and TORTURE as defined by Amnesty International who have utterly condemmed the treatment of Manning) that is the issue here, folks.

    If you say "Hell, yes, he took an oath and now has to stick by it and obey whatever order he is given!", then I would point you to a famous oath taken by some of your own slightly worrying 'hardcore patriots' - "My Country, Right or Wrong". Hell, you may as well say "My Father, Drunk or Sober.". Acceptance of orders without question, obedience beyond reason and without personal reflection has a name, folks; *fundamentalism*. You might as well be yelling "All Glory To God" as you send him to the gallows for wearing denim on a sunday.

    It's becoming a signature sign-off for my posts these days; "America? Fuck, no!"

    ....Maybe I'll get it printed on a t-shirt. Anyone want one?

    1. Swiss
      Thumb Up

      Me O/

      I'll take one.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    There is no torture

    The nonsense that passes for factual info. is a joke. Manning is not being tortured or treated any different than any other suicidal prisoner. The court will decide if he is a traitor or not. The spinners are entitled to their baseless opinions but the law is what applies in court. They make prisons for people who violate law.

    1. Swiss

      There is no Torture, well, thats ok then...

      So all these reports are lies, Manning is not woken during the night every 5 minutes, he does in fact have a bed to sleep on along with some blankets, he is also fully clothed.

      "The nonsense that passes for factual info. is a joke. Manning is not being tortured or treated any different than any other suicidal prisoner."

      And this is based on first hand experience?

      Been in to visit Manning to check on his conditions?

      Perhaps you have first hand knowledge of guarding prisoners?

      I suspect like the majority of us on this forum you have to go by the media reports as to Manning current predicament, if so which comic have you been reading?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Remember Lewis says the media exaggerates

    We know Manning isn't being abused because Lewis has told us over and over how the media sensationalizes these stories.

  15. This post has been deleted by its author

  16. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

    @AC 14:36

    "Manning is not being tortured or treated any different than any other suicidal prisoner..."

    Oh, really? Let me see now....

    So, that's Amnesty International who think is 'inhumane treatment' (Which, under US Law, is the same as saying 'torture', despite Bush redefining the word in Patriot 1&2).

    Thats the Guardian (A major UK newspaper, very influential and representative of European attitudes) calling it torture outright.

    And, an article from a legal forum mentioning that the UN is concerned enough that it might be torture that they intend to investigate.

    If you'd like more 'baseless opinons' feel free to run a quick google for "torture bradley manning" and see how many sites are in favour of his incarceration under these conditions and how many are not. I would submit that the law of one nation should be prepared to change in the face of international opinion, in the same manner that the US has often expected of others.

    America? Fuck no. Here's your coat....

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