[lbo-talk] Obama on Bradley Manning

James Leveque jamespl79 at gmail.com
Sun Apr 24 17:48:28 PDT 2011

On Sun, Apr 24, 2011 at 6:31 PM, ken hanly <northsunm at yahoo.com> wrote:

> What he says about Ellsberg is also incorrect I believe. The material he
> released was classified and in fact
> still is in spite of being all over the place. It was of more significance
> than
> anything Manning is alleged to have released.

Glenn Greenwald has this to say about it.

What Obama said there is technically true, but not the way he intended. Indeed, the truth of the matter makes exactly the opposite point as the one the President attempted to make. The 42 volumes of the Pentagon Papers leaked by Ellsberg to *The New York Times* were designated "*TOP SECRET*": the highest secrecy designation under the law. By stark contrast, not a single page of the materials allegedly leaked by Manning to Wikileaks was marked "top secret"; to the contrary, it was all marked "secret" or "classified": among the lowest level secrecy classifications. Using the Government's own standards, then, the leak by Ellsberg was vastly more dangerous than the alleged leak by Manning.

(And the notion that Ellsberg's leak was limited and highly selective is absurd; he passed on thousands of pages to the *New York Times* in the form of 42 full volumes worth. Among the documents leaked by Ellsberg were some of the *nation's most sensitive cryptography and eavesdropping methods*<http://scholarship.law.wm.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1526&context=wmborj&sei-redir=1#search=%22james+bamford+pentagon+papers+crytography%22>: documents *The New York Times* withheld from publication upon the NSA's insistence that their publication would gravely harm American national security [see p. 388 and fn 170<http://scholarship.law.wm.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1526&context=wmborj&sei-redir=1#search=%22james+bamford+pentagon+papers+crytography%22>].

By contrast, none of the documents allegedly leaked by Manning comes close to anything as potentially damaging or sensitive as that.)


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