Tomorrow I’ll be at the Alexandria Virgina federal courthouse with David House, who is being called to appear before a grand jury regarding the Bradley Manning/Wikileaks investigation. Tomorrow night at 6pm there will be a student protest in Boston in support of House, Manning, Wikileaks and the others who are being called before the grand jury:
Protest with banners, music, whistle-blowing, education, and speaking out against government repression.
We are gathering to protest the detainment and unfair treatment of Bradley Manning and the pending grand jury investigation that seeks to embroil WikiLeaks, its associates, and its supporters in espionage charges. Recent attacks on its citizens has made it clear to us that the United States government no longer automatically grants freedom and liberty to its governed.
David House and other activists in the Boston area have faced heavy surveillance and computer seizure by homeland security, without warrants, and have been offered bribes as a result of their connections to WikiLeaks and Bradley Manning.
These attacks against activists are nothing compared to what we will face if the grand jury decides to extradite Julian Assange on charges of espionage. Due to the vague wording of the Espionage Act, there will remain “no distinction between the leaker, the recipient of the leak, or the 100th person to redistribute, retransmit, or even retain the national defense information that, by that point, is already in the public domain”, a Hearing Before the House Committee on the Judiciary determined. This will give the government the legal groundwork to incriminate anyone who supports WikiLeaks, and perhaps any organization that provides an outlet for whistle-blowers in the future.
Subpoenas have been served to David and others in Greater Boston to appear before the grand jury. The date of his appearance is the day of our protest, which we have chosen to show our solidarity, as subpoenaed activists risk being held in contempt and jailed for the duration of the trial should they refuse to cooperate with the grand jury.
We have taken this abuse long enough. We, Civic Counsel, students and concerned citizens, believe it is time to stand up for our own rights and those of the people around us. If we do nothing, we risk losing the rest of our freedom and privacy. The government seeks to remove even our most basic rights: the rights to speak up for justice and hold our so-called “representatives” accountable. The trends of rampant corruption, unnecessary withholding of information, and unlawful detainment of citizens must end.
Protest with us on Wednesday. This is your country. This is your government. These are your neighbors who have been targeted. Stand with us.
I’ll be sending updates from the courthouse tomorrow, and I’ll be on MSNBC at 4pm to talk about what happens. Activists are also planning activities at the Alexandria courthouse as well.
If you’re in the Boston area, please join this group of committed students who will convene at the Boston courthouse tomorrow at 6pm. For more information see the press release here, and the Civic Counsel website here.