3:00 PM EST, December 3, 2012
Public sympathy for Pfc. Bradley Manning is misplaced ("Manning: 'I thought I was going to die,'" Nov. 30). He may well be a misfit, but he is a soldier who volunteered for the job.
As a member of the armed forces, he must do as he is told. He had no authority to release classified information to the public. He stands to be convicted of sedition, mutiny, dereliction of duty and other crimes.
As a civilian, you can "blow the whistle" and not expect to go to prison for it. But you cannot do that as an member of the armed services of any country in the world.
My concern is more for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who has been made the chief boogeyman in this affair. Mr. Assange is a civilian, and not even a U.S. national, yet he is being hounded by an American government that wants to prosecute him.
Wikileaks is the true whistle-blower here. It was seeking to create a sensation, and Private Manning was duped by it. But that's his problem, and now he has to pay the penalty.
Donald Hart, Baltimore
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