I’ve been covering the trial of accused (and now essentially confessed) traitor Bradley Manning for Hot Air for some time now. At times it seems like I’ve been covering it since Reagan was in office. Whether it was the initial offenses, the staggering range of miscues by his civilian lawyer or his nominations for things ranging from a Nobel Prize to the Grand Marshal position for the gay pride parade, we’ve patiently waded through the reams of media output surrounding the circus which this Court Martial has become. But for at least some of his supporters, there is clearly not enough information getting out to the public.
Frustrated by government restrictions surrounding the court martial of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, the Freedom of the Press Foundation has announced a crowdsourcing campaign to pay a professional court reporter to transcribe the trial.
In a release Thursday, the organization said the stenographer will be credentialed by a media outlet, attend the trial and Freedom of the Press Foundation will make the transcripts available online.
“Journalists covering Manning’s case face many Kafkaesque obstacles, but nothing is more punitive than the government’s refusal to provide a timely and accurate transcript. By funding a court stenographer, we hope to help journalists in their effort to report on the trial,” said Laura Poitras, a documentary filmmaker who serves on the board of directors of Freedom of the Press Foundation, according to the release.
Seriously? A “timely and accurate transcript” of the Court Martial is what’s lacking here to overcome the “Kafkaesque obstacles” blocking reporters from bringing us every nook and cranny of this debacle? This guy gets nearly as much air time as Jody Arias. I have a Google alert set up for news on Manning’s story, and I don’t think there has been a day in the last two years where it hasn’t rung up some number of hits ranging from mundane updates to the truly bizarre. But hey… whatever floats your boat, I suppose.
The group in question is claiming they need to raise $40,000-$50,000 to cover the costs of a private transcriptionist who will take down each and every last precious syllable uttered for the rest of the proceedings, as well as providing them with press credentials. But I’m not sure what they’re getting for their money. There are reporters at every session, as I can attest in an all too exhausted fashion. They write about this case endlessly. The stuff they don’t write about is the hours and reams of mind numbing procedural bickering which take up a huge portion of every trial which goes to the jury in America. But if you want the full Monty, folks, go for it.
Meanwhile, I’ll be waiting for this guy to sail off into the sunset of some brig. This isn’t the O.J. Simpson trial, guys. This is the Army. They don’t tend to look lightly upon treason.