Even a weasel should be treated humanely
That hasn't been the case, and isn't now.
A Times editorial in January offered this description of Manning's confinement:
"[U]under a 'Protection of Injury' order, he is confined to his cell for 23 hours a day, even though his lawyer says a psychologist has determined he isn't a threat to himself. His lawyer also says that Manning is denied sheets and is unable to exercise in his cell, and that he is not allowed to sleep between 5 a.m. and 8 p.m. If he attempts to sleep during those hours, he is made to sit up or stand by his guards."
Now, according to Manning's lawyer, the conditions have become more humiliating. David Coombs writes on his web page: "PFC Manning was forced to strip naked in his cell again last night. As with the previous evening, Quantico Brig guards required him to surrender all of his clothing. PFC Manning then walked back to his bed, and spent the next seven hours in humiliation."
I'm not an expert on military law, but this sort of treatment seems pointlessly degrading. If the military plans to prosecute Manning, it shouldn't be generating sympathy for him.
Photo: Army Specialist Bradley Manning. Credit: EPA / bradleymanning.org