Crowley Resigns After Calling Pentagon Treatment of Detainee “Stupid”

P.J. Crowley created a stir when he referred to the treatment of a U.S. soldier by the Pentagon as ‘stupid’ during a speech he delivered to a small audience at a Massachusetts university. It was reported last week by a BBC journalist that Crowley, who is a retired Air Force colonel, labeled the Pentagon’s treatment of a jailed ex-intelligence analyst, Bradley Manning, as “ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid.”

Manning Mistreated in Marine Brig

Manning is being detained in a Marine base in Virginia while charges that he leaked documents while stationed in Iraq are being investigated. Manning’s lawyers have stated that their client, 23 years old, is being mistreated while in custody in the Marine brig.The lawyers have said that Manning is in solitary confinement 23 hours each day, while the Pentagon admits that he is forced to sleep naked and woken up several times each night to ‘ensure his safety.’

Provided Wikileaks with Embarrassing Documents

The documents which Manning is being accused of leaking to Wikileaks apparently tarnished U.S. diplomacy since both friends and adversaries saw themselves as made fun of or second-guessed in the secret diplomatic cables.During the statement Crowley read on Sunday declaring his resignation he also stated that the leaking of classified documents is a “serious crime under U.S. law.”Crowley added 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.””The exercise of power in today’s challenging times and relentless media environment must be prudent and consistent with our laws and values,” Crowley also said.On Friday President Obama stated that the treatment of Manning by the Pentagon is appropriate. When he was asked at a news conference to comment on Crowley’s less than complimentary remarks, Obama answered that the detained soldier’s treatment “reflects the Department of Defense’s concerns about the soldier’s safety.”

Not First Time US Accused of Mistreating Detainees

This is far from the first time the U.S. has been criticized for its treatment of detainees. In the past the U.S. has come under fire for its treatment of terrorists held in Guantanamo Bay in Cuba and prisoners detained in Iraq and Afghanistan. U.S. spokesmen have consistently defended the treatment of prisoners in these facilities as completely suitable and appropriate.J.P. Crowley has been the State Department spokesman since May 2009. Crowley also served as Special Assistant to the President for national Security Affairs under President Clinton.Secretary of State Hillary Clinton accepted Crowley’s resignation with “regret.”  Clinton appointed Michael Hammer, who had served as Crowley’s deputy, will take over for Crowley temporarily, and also stated that Crowley had served the United States  “with distinction” for more than thirty years and “I wish him the very best.”

Alyssa Anderson

Alyssa Anderson has been involved in the world of business on several levels for many years. She was the CEO of a start-up high-tech company until its purchase by a global on-line e-business. Alyssa helped formulate marketing strategies for several other companies as an independent consultant, and she has advised local government on methods to achieve appropriate fiscal responsibility. Her opinions are well known through her many editorials which have been published throughout her career in a variety of local and national print media. She has been heard on radio discussing current issues affecting the business community and Alyssa hopes to bring her special brand of commonsense coupled with uncanny insight into her editorial responsibilities as the Business Page editor for Left Justified. Contact Alyssa at alyssa(at)

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