Norman Solomon on Bradley Manning and Who "The Enemy" Really Is


Norman Solomon, founder of and the executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy, uses two questions posed by The New Yorker writer Amy Davidson as prompts for this insightful essay, "Bradley Manning is Guilty of 'Aiding the Enemy'-- If the Enemy is Democracy." 

On her blog, Davidson asked the following:

  • Would it aid the enemy, for example, to expose war crimes committed by American forces or lies told by the American government
  • In that case, who is aiding the enemy -- the whistleblower or the perpetrators themselves?

Solomon writes, 

"...[O]ngoing actions of the U.S. government have hugely boosted the propaganda impact and recruiting momentum of forces that Washington publicly describes as "the enemy." Policies under the Bush and Obama administrations -- in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen and beyond, with hovering drones, missile strikes and night raids, at prisons such as Abu Ghraib, Bagram, Guantanamo and secret rendition torture sites -- have "aided the enemy" on a scale so enormous that it makes the alleged (and fictitious) aid to named enemies from Manning's leaks infinitesimal in comparison.

Blaming the humanist PFC messenger for "aiding the enemy" is an exercise in self-exculpation by an administration that cannot face up to its own vast war crimes."

Read Solomon's full essay here, on