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BERKELEY, Calif. — The Berkeley City Council tabled a controversial resolution Tuesday night that would have declared the U.S. soldier accused of leaking classified documents to WikiLeaks a hero deserving of a medal.
The city council debated the resolution for several hours before putting off a vote on the resolution to honor Army Private First Class Bradley Manning – the person allegedly behind the release of secret documents to the website WikiLeaks.
A Japanese network was among those on hand to hear the council debate whether Manning should be called a hero. Amid the thousands of classified documents given to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s organization. Many of the documents contained information about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“It was an amazing service he provided to our country so we can make informed decisions about war and how it affects our troops around the world,” argued Berkeley Peace & Justice Commission Chair Wendy Kenin.
Some in the audience held signs and wore buttons supporting the army private. But others said Berkeley was once again going too far outside its jurisdiction by wading into this debate.
“I think it’s a drain on Berkeley’s resources,” said Berkeley Peace & Justice Commission member Thyme S. Siegel. “They have a fiscal crisis to deal with. Hello!”
Move America Forward activist Danny Gonzalez brought a box filled with petitions. He said 4,500 people across the country filled them out as part of an internet campaign calling Private Manning a traitor.
“What he did was put our troops in danger and gave a morale boost to the enemy,” said Gonzalez.
Berkeley’s Mayor Tom Bates said the council members eventually decided there was not enough information for the council to make a decision.
“I think it’s premature,” said Bates. “This is going to be a long debate.”
More, via AP:
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — The Berkeley City Council put off a vote Tuesday night on whether to bestow hero status on a soldier who allegedly released classified information to WikiLeaks.
Some council members in this famously liberal city said they were concerned about the way the resolution was written and wanted more time to investigate. Others said it was premature to hail Pfc. Bradley Manning a hero when he has not admitted to being the source of the leaks.
“My problem with the recommendation as it stands is we’re being asked to proclaim somebody a hero who hasn’t said he wants to be recognized as a hero, who hasn’t said that he did it,” said Councilman Kriss Worthington, who added that he did consider a hero whoever was responsible for the leaks.
“I think this should come back to us if he actually says that he did it.”
These people are freaking hopeless. And sadly, they are – in my opinion – representative of modern day radical liberalism at large. What you find happening in the Berkeleys and the San Franciscos of America is pretty much what most “mainstream” Democrat politicos nationwide believe – but are too afraid to express in public in such a blatant manner. Think about it: Which party has been the voice of the anti-war movement? Which party is the one that treated (and still treats) President Bush and Vice President Cheney as war criminals who need to be hauled off in front of a world court? Which party is the one that demanded a Wikileaks-type “transparency” during the Bush administration when it came to sensitive counterterrorism policies, tactics, and information that – if published – would aid the enemy and hamper our efforts to catch Islamofascists?
I rest my case.