8 December 2010
Wikileaks Reneges Bradley Manning Promise
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Bradley Manning Support Network accepts responsibility for all expenses to defend accused Wikileaks whistle-blower
Jeff Paterson, Steering Committee, Bradley Manning Support
Oakland, CA, December 8, 2010 - Since July 2010, the Bradley Manning Support Network, in collaboration with Oakland, CA based Courage to Resist, has solicited and distributed funds in support of accused Wikileaks whistle-blower Bradley Manning. Over 1,200 individuals and organizations have responded with contributions totaling over $90,000, either to the defense fund or to Bradley's legal trust account. Thus far $50,000 has been transferred to Bradley's lead civilian attorney, David Coombs, half of the total expected legal expense of $100,000.
The Support Network has also made expenditures for printing and international distribution of leaflets, posters and information cards; staging public forums, events and demonstrations; production of banners, t-shirts, stickers and whistles for organizers; travel expenses for Bradley's visitors at the Quantico brig; communication expenses, including phone and Internet hosting; processing the "Stand with Brad" public declaration and petition (www.standwithbrad.org); accounting; fiscal fees and credit card company fees.
Immediately following Bradley's arrest in late June 2010, the whistle-blower website Wikileaks publicly solicited donations specifically for Bradley's legal defense expenses. In July 2010, Wikileaks pledged to contribute a "substantial amount" towards Bradley's legal defense costs. Since Bradley's selection of David Coombs as his civilian defense attorney in August 2010, the Bradley Manning Support Network has unsuccessfully attempted to facilitate the pledged Wikileaks contribution.
"We understand the difficult situation Wikileaks currently faces as the world's governments conspire to extinguish the whistle-blower website," explained Jeff Paterson, Bradley Manning Support Network steering committee member and project director of Courage to Resist (couragetoresist.org). "However, in order to meet Bradley Manning's legal defense needs, we're forced to clarify that Wikileaks has not yet made a contribution towards this effort. We certainly welcome any contribution from Wikileaks, but we need to inform our supporters that it may not be forthcoming and that their continued contributions and support are crucial."
Donations towards Bradley's defense can be made at bradleymanning.org -- to either the Support Network for both public education efforts and legal defense, or directly to Bradley's legal trust account.
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