Los Angeles Times: Soldier in WikiLeaks Case Charged with Aiding the Enemy
Bradley Manning, the soldier suspected of leaking classified information to WikiLeaks, has been charged by the U.S. Army with 22 new counts. The charges include “aiding and giving intelligence to the enemy,” as well as “theft of public property or records; transmitting Defense Department information; and fraud in connection with computers.” Although the charge of aiding the enemy is a capital offense, the Army stated that it does not intend to recommend the death penalty for Manning. Manning could, however, face life in prison if he is convicted.
Although Manning is the only individual charged so far, the Department of Justice is continuing to investigate ways that it could charge WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (and other members of the organization) in civilian court.
Seattle Times: Lewis-McChord Soldier Given Hard Labor, Bad-Conduct Discharge
A U.S. Army soldier has been sentenced to “60 days' hard labor and a bad-conduct discharge” after being charged with drug use, stabbing an Afghan corpse, and assaulting a fellow soldier who blew the whistle on the crimes. The soldier was one of the members of a rogue platoon that targeted Afghan civilians for sport, but is not one of the five soldiers charged with murder.
The New York Times: Politics Seen to Limit E.P.A. as It Sets Rules for Natural Gas
This article details how political pressure from Congress and other government regulators has hindered the EPA’s attempt to regulate natural gas drilling. The natural gas drilling industry is currently subject to much looser regulations as compared to other “heavy” industries, due to the industry’s exemption from several federal environmental laws.
Specifically, in 2004, after an initial EPA study on the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing or "fracking" was finalized and released, an EPA whistleblower came forward and stated "the agency had been strongly influenced by industry and political pressure."
MSNBC.com: E. coli Found on 50 Percent of Shopping Carts
A new study by the University of Arizona showed high rates of bacterial contamination on shopping cart handles in supermarkets. The study's lead researcher said the results "may explain earlier research that found that kids who rode in shopping carts were more likely than others to develop infections caused by bacteria such as salmonella and campylobacter."
KENS5.com (Texas): Former Clerk Files Lawsuit against Bexar Co., Airs Dirty Laundry
A former clerk at the Bexar County Constable’s Office (Texas) is suing the county under the state’s whistleblower law. The whistleblower claims that he was fired for exposing illegal activities committed by other county constables, including “criminal fraud and misappropriation of funds.”
Lindsay Bigda is Communications Fellow for the Government Accountability Project, the nation's leading whistleblower advocacy organization.