"The best weapon of a dictatorship is secrecy, but the best weapon of a democracy should be the weapon of openness".
The very word 'secrecy' is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths, and to secret proceedings.
John F. Kennedy
Where there is secrecy in public affairs, there is deception and often illegality.
We know, based on the public statements of the heads of the 9/11 Commission, that the government lied to the Commission. What were they covering up. Lies are fabricated to hide something.
Among the secrets exposed by Manning and Snowden were war crimes (see Collateral Damage video) and violations of the privacy of citizens and betrayal of allies with snooping.
Where there is much secrecy, there is much deception. It takes a true patriot to sacrifice his own career and safety to expose the crimes of government, which, not unsurprisingly, are kept secret.
When government action is secret, it is unaccountable. When government is unaccountable, it becomes tyrannical.
Those who expose government secrets are working to undo the tyranny of secrecy, unaccountability, and as a result, unlimited power. Unlimited power corrupts without limits.
Those who expose the corruption should be honored for their brave patriotism.
Those who criticize them are defenders of tyranny and deception.