Shakespeare and Bradley Manning’s Trial. What The Defense Should Have Said

If that be right which Warwick says is right, There is no wrong, but everything is right.“If that be right which Warwick says is right,
There is no wrong, but everything is right.”

(King Henry VI part 3, act 2, sc. 2)

The trial of BC Manning has ended and the Defense Counsel did what he thought his best. I have now received an anonymous hand-written document proposing another line of defense, more in tune – the writer says – with the reality of things. I transcribed it and offer it to the visitors of this site.

“Judge! In legal form I should address you as ‘Your Honor’, but I can’t, and not for disrespect of the law. But the concept of honor cannot be dis joined from the concept of conscience. And earlier on you ruled that conscience cannot be brought into this trial and it cannot be an argument for the defense!

But there can be no honor where there is no conscience, and there can be no justice where there is no honor.

By your very ruling you have excluded honor from this court. Therefore, by calling you anything but “Judge” I would join the vast herd of flatterers, hypocrites, robbers, mass murderers and other criminals who happily feed at the government trough.

And since I began with the accuracy of words, let us briefly mention the accuracy, or rather the inaccuracy of another, namely ‘allegiance’.

We see in these rooms all the symbols and emblems of the nation to whom we are expected to pledge our allegiance – the high benches, the flags, the finials, the eagle, the portraits, the pomp and the circumstance. Symbols and emblems intended to express the dignity of the state that is supposed to represent and express the will of all the citizens –  including you, Judge, me and the accused BC Manning.

But can there be dignity without honor, if honor cannot exist without conscience? Or are our eyes to be dazzled with show so as to warp our wills and darken our understanding?

In this kangaroo trial (recognized as such by the thinking segment of the citizenry) the guilt of the accused has already been proclaimed by the corporate media. Media that is but a top-down imposition of official ideology masquerading as public opinion.

Allegiance means loyalty or commitment of a subordinate to a superior, or of an individual to a group or cause. But if the cause is murder, is allegiance justified? I would be disrespectful of your intelligence, Judge, in reminding you that allegiance to the Third Reich was not deemed a sufficient reason to exempt its leaders from the sentence of death.

May I now remind the Court of these following and familiar words,

“When in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth,  … a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”

There is separation of peoples, separation of actions and separation of allegiance. The words come, of course, from the Declaration of Independence and the analogies of thought and intentions are striking.

Does a government which is the greater purveyor of violence and murder in the world deserve the allegiance of its subjects? Or would not such allegiance, by extension, be an assent to murder?

Nor I need to remind you that the words “greater purveyor of violence” were applied to this Country by a man recognized as a national hero by the very people who now outwardly honor him, while behaving as his worst enemies did and would have done.

The sacredness of the republic, as implied in the pledge of allegiance, becomes, in the circumstances, a low papistical design of gaining an unfair bias on the credulous weakness of our minds.

Our collective duty to mankind at large, as well as to ourselves, instructs us to renounce an allegiance to mass murder.  By representing what it does, ‘allegiance’ extinguishes its title, unless, along with murdering people, we also murder the dictionary and give the word a different meaning.

All this BC Manning may have not articulated into words but his conscience directed his actions accordingly. The servile sycophants of power, their minds poisoned by self-importance, may belittle him, but his soul is greater and nobler than all the Pentagon, the CIA and the minions of government combined

BC Manning watched, as others did, with horror, the spectacle of American soldiers on a helicopter, slaughtering 12 unarmed citizens of Baghdad, and firing on those who came to the rescue, including children.

Nor I should remind you that the invasion of Iraq, based on fabricated and obviously monstrous lies, has cost the lives of one million people. And perhaps I should encourage you to see the pictures and videos that somehow escaped from the tight curtains of crime protection – the soldiers urinating on their victims, those raping Afghan and Iraqi women, the dogs attacking the prisoners, the prisoners sexually assaulted, hanged upside down, “waterboarded” and subjected to torture, the secret “prisons”, the immense waste of money to enrich the notorious few at the expense of the oppressed many. Oppression being, indeed, the consequence of riches acquired through violence and murder.

The realization of the horrors of his government came to BC Manning as the mythical vision to St. Paul on the road to Damascus.

By miraculously bypassing the crime-protecting barriers surrounding the military, BC Manning has given the world a glimpse on the horror, the treachery and the crimes of his government.

There, in the blazing evidence of released files, is also the contempt of the government for its own people

What but contempt prompts a government to kill its own citizens without trial or habeas corpus, as now embodied into law? And why such an immense wall of secrecy towards the very citizens the government represents? Does it think they are stupid? Or is it, rather, the case of hiding the crimes against humanity under the ridiculous disguise of “Homeland” Security. The people may live on the same land as the criminals, but do not share their home with them, nor feel more secure by them.

A government is formed by election or usurpation. But it is possible to form a government by usurpation while branding it an election. The American citizens have no more power to affect their government than to affect the weather. The extant mode of government is to trade laws and favors in exchange for money. As if evidence were not already overwhelming, while this trial is running, someone has uploaded on line a message left by a prominent senator to a lobbyist. Where the senator asks for money as the obvious condition for the lobbyist to be heard.

In the circumstances, allegiance is but a superstitious tale to cram obedience into the minds of the unthinking and compliance into the throats of the uninformed.

In Christian mythology, thirty pieces of silver was the price agreed upon for Judas to betray Christ. I understand that while this trial is in progress, you have been already promoted to a higher and higher paying position.

I urge you not to accept that position, not to silence the voice of your conscience and to become, instead,  a beacon of justice to the world. NOT ONLY declare BC Manning NOT GUILTY of any charge, but recommend him for the highest medal of honor given by this Country to a citizen, and for the Nobel prize for peace.

It is but the duty that justice owes to mankind. I rest my case.”

In the play. The Prince of Wales, rightful heir to the throne comments on Warwick’s reasons why Henry VI should abdicate (whereby the Prince of Wales would lose his rights).

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