Bradley Manning comment costs State Department spokesman his job
State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley resigned over controversial comments he made about the treatment of alleged WikiLeaks source US Army Pfc. Bradley Manning.
(Page 2 of 2)
Prolonged isolation, sleep deprivation, nudity – that's right out of the manual of the CIA for ‘enhanced interrogation’,” Ellsberg wrote on the website for the British newspaper the Guardian. “We've seen it applied in Guantánamo and Abu Ghraib. It's what the CIA calls ‘no-touch torture’, and its purpose there, as in this case, is very clear: to demoralize someone to the point of offering a desired confession.”Skip to next paragraph
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
Crowley’s leaving the State Department – which may have been in the works anyway due to his relationship with Secretary Clinton – no doubt was accelerated by his statement at M.I.T., which caused an awkward moment for President Obama.
Obama had to answer Crowley's criticism
At his press conference Friday, Obama was asked about Crowley’s sharp criticism of Manning’s treatment.
"I have actually asked the Pentagon whether or not the procedures that have been taken in terms of his confinement are appropriate and are meeting our basic standards,” he replied. “They assured me that they are."
In other words, Obama – who campaigned against the mistreatment of Iraq War prisoners and who pledged to close the military prison at Guantánamo Bay – was put in the position of having to take the Pentagon’s word for it, despite continuing criticism from domestic and international human rights organizations.
In his statement regarding his resignation, Crowley acknowledged that.
"My recent comments regarding the conditions of the pre-trial detention of Private First Class Bradley Manning were intended to highlight the broader, even strategic impact of discreet actions undertaken by national security agencies every day and their impact on our global standing and leadership," he wrote. "Given the impact of my remarks, for which I take full responsibility, I have submitted my resignation as Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs and Spokesman for the Department of State."
There’s been speculation that Crowley’s comment about Manning’s treatment may have been influenced by his own father’s time as a prisoner of war in World War II.