Friday, July 30, 2010

What Should Ultimately Be Done in this Case?

The WikiLeaks story is unfolding and one PFC B. Manning has been taken into custody and now is housed apparently at Quantico, VA. This whole affair may turn out to have wide reaching detrimental consequences for the security of our forces and the security of those who are allied with us. The question will certainly come up - What should be done with the Private First Class, assuming that he is found guilty of misconduct? Treason does carry a penalty; a shall we say final penalty. After all we are not talking about some mere corporate malfeasance.

1 comment:

Jayhawk said...

I think this one is similar to the "ticking time bomb" scenario and torture. Torture must always be outlawed by this nation, and be prohibited under any circumstances. In some circumstances a man may place his nation above himself and violate the law to save others. When he does that he accepts the consequences of his actions. The nation thanks him, pins a medal on his chest, and then puts a noose around his neck and hangs him dead.

The outcome is not the act.

It is the act that is regulated by law. Such must be the case for the simple reason that outcomes cannot be predicted. Certain acts can be presumed to have certain outcomes, and are therefor outlawed. That the outcome was fortuitously beneficial does not alter its illegality, and the illegality was known when it was committed.

We can admire the man for selfless patriotism while still punishing him for the illegality of his action.