The government’s prosecution of Pfc Bradley Manning has always tried to stretch the law to its breaking point to tack on as many charges as possible, and has often played fast and loose with the facts, creating growing signs of an unprofessional witch hunt attitude.
But today lead prosecutor Maj. Ashden Fein sought to kick it up another notch, and with closing arguments nearing appears to have thrown any semblance of reality out the window in favor of furious rhetoric and ad hominem attacks.
Instead of merely arguing that Manning’s factions amount to criminality under military law, Major Fein sought to portray the private as an unfeeling, inhuman monster, and one of the worst human beings to ever live.
“The only human Pfc Manning ever cared about was himself,” declaring Fein, who went on to insist that Manning had only leaked info about US war crimes to “get attention” and closed with a photo of Manning, pre-arrest, who he declared a “gleeful, grinning traitor” who hates the American flag for some reason too.
The extent to which Fein’s rhetoric has gone off the rails is bound to harm the case in the eyes of the average American, though with Judge Col. Lind giving the prosecution literally anything and everything it wants, it is unlikely to change the foregone conclusion of a guilty verdict in the shaky military court system.