The neocons are looking to make a big comeback. Job one is to rehabilitate the Iraq war fiasco by re-writing history. It was not lies and manipulation that brought the US into the Iraq war, they claim, but it was only “faulty intelligence.” And Dick Cheney is coming out with a new book urging the US to “rebuild” the military so that it can engage in more pre-emptive wars! Will they succeed? Tune in to today’s Liberty Report:

Reprinted with permission from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.

As a number of outlets have reported, Chelsea Manning faces a disciplinary board on Tuesday for four alleged violations, including brushing crumbs on the floor, disrespecting an officer, keeping toothpaste past its expiry date, and keeping items deemed contraband, including the Vanity Fair issue on Caitlyn Jenner.

Manning will not have a lawyer at the hearing, and over the weekend authorities refused her access to the prison law library. She may receive indefinite solitary confinement as punishment for these absurd alleged offenses.

Along with that list of seemingly trivial items, Leavenworth officials also confiscated an item that goes to the core of the whistleblowing that landed Manning in prison in the first place: the Senate Torture Report.

Chelsea Manning faces the threat of solitary confinement, which most countries and many psychologists consider torture, because she was reading the Senate Torture Report.

Recall that among the events that led Manning to provide information to WikiLeaks was when she was ordered to “assist the Baghdad Federal Police in identifying the political opponents of Prime Minister al-Maliki” – people who Manning discovered were actually criticizing Maliki’s corruption. Manning realized that by helping the Baghdad Police, US forces would be helping put them “in the custody of the Special Unit of the Baghdad Federal Police [where they would be] very likely tortured.” In an effort to thwart US complicity in torture, Manning leaked classified materials to WikiLeaks, including information on Iraq’s Wolf Brigade, a unit that conducted torture the official US policy on which was to ignore.

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Three years after Ecuador’s government granted political asylum to Julian Assange in its small ground-floor London embassy, the founder of WikiLeaks is still there – beyond the reach of the government whose vice president, Joe Biden, has labeled him “a digital terrorist.” The Obama administration wants Assange in a U.S. prison, so that the only mouse he might ever see would be scurrying across the floor of a solitary-confinement cell.

Above and beyond Assange’s personal freedom, what’s at stake includes the impunity of the United States and its allies to relegate transparency to a mythical concept, with democracy more rhetoric than reality. From the Vietnam War era to today – from aerial bombing and torture to ecological disasters and financial scams moving billions of dollars into private pockets – the high-up secrecy hiding key realities from the public has done vast damage. No wonder economic and political elites despise WikiLeaks for its disclosures.

During the last five years, since the release of the infamous “Collateral Murder” video, the world has changed in major ways for democratic possibilities, with WikiLeaks as a catalyst. It’s sadly appropriate that Assange is so deplored and reviled by so many in the upper reaches of governments, huge corporations and mass media. For such powerful entities, truly informative leaks to the public are plagues that should be eradicated as much as possible.

Notably, in the US mass media, Assange is often grouped together with whistleblowers. He is in fact a journalistic editor and publisher. In acute contrast to so many at the top of the corporate media and governmental food chains, Assange insists that democracy requires the “consent of the governed” to be informed consent. While powerful elites work 24/7 to continually gain the uninformed consent of the governed, WikiLeaks has opposite concerns.

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In a recent piece on Foreign Policy, titled, “No One Talks About Liberating Mosul Anymore,” Michael Knights wrote about the necessity of training better Iraqi forces and unleashing U.S. airpower in Iraq to fight the so-called Islamic State (IS).

“It’s time to let the US military get creative with partners on the ground – and let pilots above open a can of whoop-ass on the Islamic State,” reads the epigraph of the piece.

Knights couldn’t be more wrong about a prescription for the situation. He’s doing what neoconservatives usually do in situations like this – ignore history itself.

This kind of bravado associated with caricatures of the American military has no foresight about the consequences of increasing military action. Let’s say we follow through on Knight’s proposal and bomb Mosul back to the Stone Age – then what? Reoccupy the country? And then what?

Knight would most likely respond that he favors drastically increasing the Iraqi Train and Equip Fund from its purportedly meager sum of $1.6 billion in 2015 to its previous levels during the 2005-2008 surge. But how successful was that strategy that he proposes for our Commander-in-Chief?

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If the onsite horrors of the war and embargo against Yemen are not reason enough for us to advocate an American withdrawal from that foreign conflagration, hopefully this is: our government’s support for the Saudi war in Yemen entails aggression in the United States.

I am not here referring to anti-American blowback from bereaved Yemenis, although that sort of aggression could very well materialize in the future. I am instead talking about the ongoing and presently verifiable aggression against all American taxpayers forced to subsidize our government’s adventurism in the Arabian Peninsula. As common sense tells us, every bomb, every missile, and every tracer that the United States sends to the Saudi coalition is a bomb, a missile, and a tracer for which somebody somewhere will be compelled to pay. That "somebody" will probably be an American taxpayer who, given the nature of taxation, will risk imprisonment or property seizures should she ever decide not to genuflect to the unshackled military apparatus.

The American war in Yemen therefore extends all the way back home, albeit in a substantially diluted form. Pursuant to its military objectives, the American government threatens to aggress against any of its taxpaying citizens who refuse to aggress against Yemeni civilians. In what world is this not an abomination?

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As the neocons continue to bombard Congress demanding that the deal with Iran be killed, a group of former senior US military officers and a group of former Iranian political prisoners living in the US have both signed letters in support of the deal. Who will US lawmakers listen to? Today on the Ron Paul Liberty Report:

Reprinted with permission from the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.