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Chelsea Manning
Manning in April 2012
Born Bradley Edward Manning
December 17, 1987(1987-12-17) (age 34)
Crescent, Oklahoma, U.S.
Known for Release of classified U.S. government documents to Wikileaks
Criminal charge Violating the Espionage Act, stealing government property, violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, multiple counts of disobeying orders[1]
Criminal penalty 35 years imprisonment, reduction in pay grade to E-1, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, dishonorable discharge[2]
  • Brian Manning
  • Susan Fox
Signature signature
Military career
Allegiance United States
Service/branch U.S. Army
Years of service 2007–2013
Rank Private (E-1)[3]
Unit Shoulder sleeve insignia of the 10th Mountain Division (1944-2015).svg 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division
Awards National Defense Service Medal ribbon.svg National Defense Service Medal
Iraq Campaign ribbon.svg Iraq Campaign Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service ribbon.svg Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Army Service Ribbon.svg Army Service Ribbon
Army Overseas Service Ribbon.svg Army Overseas Service Ribbon

Chelsea Elizabeth Manning[4] (born Bradley Edward Manning, December 17, 1987) is a United States Army soldier who was convicted in July 2013 of violations of the Espionage Act and other offenses, after releasing the largest set of classified documents ever leaked to the public. Manning was sentenced in August 2013 to confinement for 35 years and to be dishonorably discharged from the Army. This was reduced by 112 days for harsh treatment received during pre-trial confinement at Marine Corps Brig, Quantico. Credit for other pre-trial confinement and good behavior could result in her release on parole after eight years.[2] While in the Army, Manning was known as Bradley and diagnosed with gender identity disorder. In a statement the day after sentencing, Manning said she felt female since childhood, wanted to be known as Chelsea, and requested hormone replacement therapy.[4]

Assigned in 2009 to an Army unit in Iraq as an intelligence analyst, Manning had access to classified databases. In early 2010 she leaked classified information to WikiLeaks and confided this to Adrian Lamo, an online acquaintance. Lamo informed Army Counterintelligence, and Manning was arrested in May that same year. The material included videos of the July 12, 2007 Baghdad airstrike, and the 2009 Granai airstrike in Afghanistan; 250,000 U.S. diplomatic cables; and 500,000 Army reports that came to be known as the Iraq War logs and Afghan War logs. Much of the material was published by WikiLeaks or its media partners between April and November 2010.[5]

Manning was ultimately charged with 22 offenses, including aiding the enemy, the most serious charge.[6] She was held at the Marine Corps Brig, Quantico in Virginia, from July 2010 to April 2011 under Prevention of Injury status—which entailed de facto solitary confinement and other restrictions that caused domestic and international concern—before being transferred to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where she could interact with other detainees.[7] She pleaded guilty in February 2013 to 10 of the charges.[8] The trial on the remaining charges began on June 3, 2013, and on July 30 she was convicted of 17 of the original charges and amended versions of four others, but was acquitted of aiding the enemy.[1] She will serve her sentence at the maximum-security U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth.[9]

Reaction to Manning's disclosures, arrest, and sentence was mixed. Denver Nicks, one of her biographers, writes that the leaked material, particularly the diplomatic cables, was widely seen as a catalyst for the Arab Spring that began in December 2010, and that Manning was viewed as both a 21st-century Tiananmen Square Tank Man and an embittered traitor.[10] Reporters Without Borders condemned the length of the sentence, saying that it demonstrated how vulnerable whistleblowers are.[11]


Early life[]

Born Bradley Edward Manning in 1987 in Crescent, Oklahoma, she was the second child of Susan Fox, originally from Wales, and Brian Manning, an American. Brian had joined the United States Navy in 1974 at the age of 19, and served for five years as an intelligence analyst. Brian met Susan in a local Woolworth's while stationed in Wales at Cawdor Barracks. Manning's sister was born in 1976. The couple returned to the United States in 1979, moving first to California, then to a two-story house outside Crescent, with an above-ground swimming pool and 5 acres (2 hectares) of land where they kept pigs and chickens.[12]

File:Young Chelsea Manning.jpg

Manning as a child

Manning's sister Casey, 11 years her senior, told the court-martial that both their parents were alcoholics, and that their mother had drunk continually while pregnant. David Moulton, a Navy psychiatrist and captain, told the court that Manning's facial features showed signs of fetal alcohol syndrome.[13] Casey became Manning's principal caregiver, waking at night to make the baby a bottle. The court heard that Manning was fed only milk and baby food until the age of two, and was always small for her age; as an adult she reached just 5 ft 2 in (1.57 m) and weighed around 105 pounds (47.6 kg).[14]

Manning's father took a job as an information technology (IT) manager for a rental car agency, which meant he had to travel. The family lived several miles out of town and Manning's mother was unable to drive. She spent her days drinking, while Manning was left largely to fend for herself, playing with Legos or on the computer. Brian would stock up on food before his trips, and leave pre-signed checks that Casey mailed to pay the bills. A neighbor said that whenever Manning's elementary school went on field trips, she would give her own son extra food or money so he could make sure Manning had something to eat.[15]

Parents' divorce, move to Wales[]

Those who knew Manning said that even as a child, she always had a mind of her own. She was an atheist who was openly opposed to religion, for example, remaining silent during the part of the Pledge of Allegiance that refers to God.[16] In a 2011 interview Manning's father said, "People need to understand that he's a young man that had a happy life growing up." He also said that Manning excelled at the saxophone, science, and computers, creating her first website at the age of ten. Manning taught herself how to use PowerPoint, won the grand prize three years in a row at the local science fair, and in sixth grade, took top prize at a statewide quiz bowl.[17]


High Street in Haverfordwest, Wales, where Manning went to secondary school

A childhood friend of Manning's, speaking about a conversation they had when Manning was 13, said "he told me he was gay." Around this time, Manning's parents divorced, and she and her mother Susan moved out of the house to a rented apartment in Crescent, Oklahoma.[18] Susan's instability continued and in 1998 she attempted suicide; Manning's sister had to drive them to the hospital, with Manning sitting in the back of the car trying to make sure their mother was still breathing.[19] Manning's father remarried in 2000, the same year as his divorce. His new wife was also named Susan and had a son from a previous relationship. Manning apparently reacted badly when the son changed his surname to Manning too; she started taking running jumps at the walls, telling her mother: "I'm nobody now."[20]

In November 2001, Manning and her mother left the United States and moved to Haverfordwest, Wales, where her mother had family. Manning attended the town's Tasker Milward secondary school. A schoolfriend there told Ed Caesar for The Sunday Times that Manning's personality was "unique, extremely unique. Very quirky, very opinionated, very political, very clever, very articulate." Manning's interest in computers continued, and in 2003, she and a friend set up a website,, a message board that offered games and music downloads.[21]

Manning became the target of bullying at the school because she was the only American and was viewed as effeminate (she was living as a boy at that time). Manning had identified to two friends in Oklahoma as gay, but was not open about it at school in Wales. The students would imitate her accent, and apparently abandoned her once during a camping trip; her aunt told The Washington Post that Manning awoke to an empty camp one morning, after everyone else packed up their tents and left without her.[22]

Return to the United States[]

Manning feared that her mother was becoming too ill to cope, so in 2005 (at the age of 17) Manning returned to the United States.[23] She moved in with her father in Oklahoma City, where he was living with his second wife and her child. Manning got a job as a developer with a software company, Zoto, and was apparently happy for a time, but was let go after four months. Her boss told The Washington Post that on a few occasions, Manning had "just locked up," and would simply sit and stare, and in the end communication became too difficult. The boss told the newspaper that "nobody's been taking care of this kid for a really long time."[24]

Manning was by then living as an openly gay man. Her relationship with her father was apparently good, but there were problems between Manning and her stepmother. In March 2006, Manning reportedly threatened her stepmother with a knife during an argument about Manning's failure to get another job; the stepmother called the police and Manning was asked to leave the house. Manning drove to Tulsa in a pickup truck her father had given her, at first sleeping in it, then moving in with a friend from school. The two of them got jobs at Incredible Pizza in April, then Manning spent time in Chicago before running out of money and again having nowhere to stay. Her mother arranged for Brian's sister, Debra, a lawyer in Potomac, Maryland, to take Manning in. Nicks writes that the 15 months Manning spent with her aunt were among the most stable of her life. Manning had a boyfriend, took several low-paid jobs, and spent a semester studying history and English at Montgomery College, but left after failing an exam.[25]

Military service[]

Enlistment in the Army[]

Manning's father spent weeks in the fall of 2007 asking her to consider joining the Army. Hoping to gain a college education through the G.I. Bill, and perhaps to study for a PhD in physics, she enlisted in September that year.[26] She told her Army supervisor later that she had also hoped joining such a masculine environment would resolve her gender identity disorder.[27]

Manning began basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, on October 2, 2007. She wrote that she soon realized she was neither physically nor mentally prepared for it.[28] Six weeks after enlisting, she was sent to the discharge unit. She was allegedly being bullied, and in the opinion of another soldier, was having a breakdown. The soldier told The Guardian: "The kid was barely five foot ... He was a runt, so pick on him. He's crazy, pick on him. He's a faggot, pick on him. The guy took it from every side. He couldn't please anyone." Denver Nicks writes that Manning, who was used to being bullied, fought back—if the drill sergeants screamed at her, she would scream at them—to the point where they started calling her "General Manning."[29]

The decision to discharge her was revoked, and she started basic training again in January 2008. After graduating in April, she moved to Fort Huachuca, Arizona, where she trained as an intelligence analyst, receiving a TS/SCI security clearance (Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information). According to Nicks, this security clearance, combined with the digitization of classified information and the government's policy of sharing it widely, gave Manning access to an unprecedented amount of material. Nicks writes that Manning was reprimanded while at Fort Huachuca for posting three video messages to friends on YouTube, in which she described the inside of the "Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility" (SCIF) where she worked.[30]

Move to Fort Drum, deployment to Iraq[]


In September 2009

In August 2008, Manning was sent to Fort Drum in Jefferson County, New York, where she joined the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, and trained for deployment to Iraq.[31] It was while stationed there in the fall of 2008 that she met Tyler Watkins, who was studying neuroscience and psychology at Brandeis University, near Boston. Watkins was her first serious relationship, and she posted happily on Facebook about it, regularly traveling 300 miles to Boston on visits.[32]

Watkins introduced her to a network of friends and the university's hacker community. She also visited Boston University's "hackerspace" workshop, known as "Builds," and met its founder, David House, the MIT researcher who was later allowed to visit her in jail. In November 2008, she gave an anonymous interview to a high-school reporter during a rally in Syracuse in support of gay marriage, saying, "I was kicked out of my home and I once lost my job. The world is not moving fast enough for us at home, work, or the battlefield. I've been living a double life. ... I can't make a statement. I can't be caught in an act. I hope the public support changes. I do hope to do that before ETS [Expiration of Term of Service]."[33]

Nicks writes that Manning would travel back to Washington, D.C., for visits, where an ex-boyfriend helped her find her way around the city's gay community, introducing her to lobbyists, activists and White House aides. Back at Fort Drum, she continued to display emotional problems and, by August 2009, had been referred to an Army mental-health counselor.[34] A friend told Nicks that Manning could be emotionally fraught, describing an evening they had watched two movies together—The Last King of Scotland and Dancer in the Dark—after which Manning cried for hours. By September 2009 her relationship with Watkins was in trouble; they reconciled for a short time, but it was effectively over.[35]

After four weeks at the Joint Readiness Training Center (JRTC) in Fort Polk, Louisiana, Manning was deployed to Forward Operating Base Hammer, near Baghdad, arriving in October 2009. From her workstation there, she had access to SIPRNet (the Secret Internet Protocol Router Network) and JWICS (the Joint Worldwide Intelligence Communications System). Two of her superiors had discussed not taking her to Iraq; it was felt she was a risk to herself and possibly others, according to a statement later issued by the Army—but again the shortage of intelligence analysts held sway.[36] A month later, in November 2009, she was promoted from Private First Class to Specialist.

Contact with gender counselor[]


The 10th Mountain Division's shoulder sleeve insignia

In November 2009 Manning wrote to a gender counselor in the United States, said she felt female, and discussed having sex reassignment surgery. The counselor told Steve Fishman of New York Magazine in 2011 that it was clear Manning was in crisis, partly because of her gender concerns, but also because she was opposed to the kind of war in which she found herself involved.[37]

She was by all accounts unhappy and isolated. Because of the military's "Don't ask, don't tell" policy (known as DADT and repealed in September 2011), Manning was unable to live as an openly gay man without risk of being discharged, although she apparently made no secret of it: her friends said she kept a fairy wand on her desk. When she told her roommate she was attracted to men, he responded by suggesting they not speak to each other.[38] Manning's working conditions, which consisted of 14- to 15-hour night shifts in a dimly lit, secured room, did not help her emotional well-being.[39]

On December 20, 2009, during a counseling session with two colleagues to discuss her poor time-keeping, Manning was told she would lose her one day off a week for persistent lateness. She responded by overturning a table, damaging a computer that was sitting on it. A sergeant moved Manning away from the weapons rack, and other soldiers pinned her arms behind her back and dragged her out of the room. Several witnesses to the incident believed her access to sensitive material ought to have been withdrawn at that point.[40] The following month, January 2010, she began posting on Facebook that she felt hopeless and alone.[41]

Release of material to WikiLeaks[]

Manning said her first contact with WikiLeaks took place in January 2010, when she began to interact with them on IRC and Jabber. She had first noticed them toward the end of November 2009, when they posted 570,000 pager messages from the September 11 attacks.[42]

Items of historical significance of two wars Iraq and Afghanistan Significant Activity, Sigacts, between 0001 January 2004 and 2359 31 December 2009 extracts from CSV documents from Department of Defense and CDNE database.

These items have already been sanitized of any source identifying information.

You might need to sit on this information for 90 to 180 days to best send and distribute such a large amount of data to a large audience and protect the source.

This is one of the most significant documents of our time removing the fog of war and revealing the true nature of 21st century asymmetric warfare.

Have a good day.[43]

Pfc. Manning, January 9, 2010

On January 5, 2010, Manning downloaded the 400,000 documents that became known as the Iraq War logs.[43] On January 8 she downloaded 91,000 documents from the Afghanistan database, the Afghan War logs. She saved the material on CD-RW, then copied it onto her personal laptop, a MacBook.[44] The next day she wrote a message in a readme.txt file (see right), which she told the court was initially intended for the Washington Post.[45]

Manning copied the files from her laptop to an SD card for her camera so that she could take it with her to the United States while on R&R leave.[44] Army investigators later found the SD card in Manning's basement room in her aunt's home in Potomac, Maryland.[46] On January 23 Manning flew to the United States via Germany for two weeks of leave. It was during this visit that she first went out dressed as a woman, wearing a wig and makeup.[47] After her arrest, her former partner, Tyler Watkins, told Wired that Manning had said during the visit that she had found some sensitive information and was considering leaking it.[48]

Manning contacted the Washington Post and New York Times to ask if they were interested in the material; the Post reporter did not sound interested and the Times did not return the call. She decided instead to pass it to WikiLeaks, and on February 3 sent them the Iraq and Afghan War logs via Tor. She returned to Iraq on February 11, with no acknowledgement from WikiLeaks that they had received the files.[49]

On or around February 18 she passed WikiLeaks a diplomatic cable, dated January 13, 2010, from the U.S. Embassy in Reykjavík, Iceland.[50] They published it within hours, which suggested to Manning that they had received the other material too.[51] She found the Baghdad helicopter attack ("Collateral murder") video in a Judge Advocate's directory, and passed it to WikiLeaks on or around February 21.[52] In late March she sent them a video of the May 2009 Granai airstrike in Afghanistan; this was the video later removed and apparently destroyed by Daniel Domscheit-Berg when he left the organization.[53] Between March 28 and April 9 she downloaded the 250,000 diplomatic cables, and uploaded them to a WikiLeaks dropbox on April 10.[54]

Manning told the court that, during her interaction with WikiLeaks on IRC and Jabber, she developed a friendship with someone there, believed to be Julian Assange (although neither knew the other's name), which she said made her feel she could be herself.[55] Army investigators found 14 to 15 pages of encrypted chats, in unallocated space on her MacBook's hard drive, between Manning and someone believed to be Assange.[46] She wrote in a statement that the more she had tried to fit in at work, the more alienated she became from everyone around her. The relationship with WikiLeaks had given her a brief respite from the isolation and anxiety.[55]

Email to supervisor, recommended discharge[]

On April 24, 2010, Manning sent an email to her supervisor, Master Sergeant Paul Adkins—with the subject line "My Problem"—that she was suffering from gender identity disorder. She attached a photograph of herself dressed as a woman and with the filename breanna.jpg.[56] She wrote:

This is my problem. I've had signs of it for a very long time. It's caused problems within my family. I thought a career in the military would get rid of it. It's not something I seek out for attention, and I've been trying very, very hard to get rid of it by placing myself in situations where it would be impossible. But, it's not going away; it's haunting me more and more as I get older. Now, the consequences of it are dire, at a time when it's causing me great pain in itself ...[27]

Adkins discussed the situation with Manning's therapists, but did not pass the email to anybody above him in his chain of command; he told Manning's court-martial that he was concerned the photograph would be disseminated among other staff.[57] Captain Steven Lim, Manning's commander, said he first saw the email after Manning's arrest, when information about hormone replacement therapy was found in Manning's room in Baghdad; at that point Lim learned that Manning had been calling herself Breanna.[58]

File:Chelsea Manning with wig.jpg

Manning sent this photograph of herself in a wig and makeup to her supervisor in April 2010.[56]

Manning told Adrian Lamo that she had set up Twitter and YouTube accounts as Breanna to give her female identity a digital presence, writing to Lamo: "I wouldn't mind going to prison for the rest of my life, or being executed so much, if it wasn't for the possibility of having pictures of me ... plastered all over the world press ... as [a] boy ... the CPU is not made for this motherboard ..."[59] On April 30 she posted on Facebook that she was utterly lost, and over the next few days wrote that she was "not a piece of equipment," and was "beyond frustrated" and "livid" after being "lectured by ex-boyfriend despite months of relationship ambiguity ..."[60]

On May 7 she seemed to spiral out of control. According to Army witnesses, she was found curled in a fetal position in a storage cupboard; she had a knife at her feet and had cut the words "I want" into a vinyl chair. A few hours later she had an altercation with a female intelligence analyst, Specialist Jihrleah Showman, during which she punched Showman in the face. The brigade psychiatrist recommended a discharge, referring to an "occupational problem and adjustment disorder." Manning's supervisor removed the bolt from her weapon, making it unable to fire, and she was sent to work in the supply office, although at this point her security clearance remained in place. As punishment for the altercation, she was demoted from Specialist (E-4) to Private First Class (E-3) three days before her arrest on May 27.[61]

Ellen Nakashima writes that, on May 9, Manning contacted Jonathan Odell, a gay American novelist in Minneapolis, via Facebook, leaving a message that she wanted to speak to him in confidence; she said she had been involved in some "very high-profile events, albeit as a nameless individual thus far."[20] On May 19, according to Army investigators, she emailed Eric Schmiedl, a mathematician she had met in Boston, and told him she had been the source of the Baghdad airstrike video. Two days later, she began the series of chats with Adrian Lamo that led to her arrest.[62]

Awards and service medals[]

Bronze star
1st Row National Defense Service Medal Iraq Campaign Medal
2nd Row Global War on Terrorism Service Medal Army Service Ribbon Army Overseas Service Ribbon

Publication of leaked material[]



Julian Assange and Daniel Domscheit-Berg at the Chaos Communication Congress, Berlin, December 2009[63]

WikiLeaks was set up in late 2006 as a disclosure portal, initially using the Wikipedia model, where volunteers would write up restricted or legally threatened material submitted by whistleblowers. It was Julian Assange—an Australian Internet activist and journalist, and the de facto editor-in-chief of WikiLeaks—who had the idea of creating what Ben Laurie called an "open-source, democratic intelligence agency." The open-editing aspect was soon abandoned, but the site remained open for anonymous submissions.[63]

According to Daniel Domscheit-Berg, a former WikiLeaks spokesperson, part of the WikiLeaks security concept was that they did not know who their sources were. The New York Times wrote in December 2010 that the U.S. government was trying to discover whether Assange had been a passive recipient of material from Manning, or had encouraged or helped her to extract the files; if the latter, Assange could be charged with conspiracy. Manning told Lamo in May 2010 that she had developed a working relationship with Assange, communicating directly with him using an encrypted Internet conferencing service, but knew little about him. WikiLeaks did not identify Manning as their source.[64] Army investigators found pages of chats on Manning's computer between Manning and someone believed to be Julian Assange.[46] Nicks writes that, despite this, no decisive evidence was found of Assange offering Manning any direction.[65]


On February 18, 2010, WikiLeaks posted the first of the material from Manning, the diplomatic cable from the U.S. Embassy in Reykjavík, a document now known as Reykjavik13.[50] On March 15 WikiLeaks posted a 32-page report written in 2008 by the U.S. Department of Defense about WikiLeaks itself, and on March 29 it posted U.S. State Department profiles of politicians in Iceland.[66]

Baghdad airstrike[]

Manning said she gave WikiLeaks the July 12, 2007 Baghdad airstrike video in early 2010.[67][68][69]

WikiLeaks named the Baghdad airstrike video "Collateral Murder," and Assange released it on April 5, 2010, during a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.[70] The video showed an American helicopter firing on a group of men in Baghdad, one of them a journalist, and two other Reuters employees carrying cameras that the pilots mistook for anti-tank grenade launchers (RPG-7). The helicopter also fired on a van that had stopped to help the injured members of the first group; two children in the van were wounded and their father was killed. The Washington Post wrote that it was this video, viewed by millions, that put WikiLeaks on the map. According to Nicks, Manning emailed a superior officer after the video aired and tried to persuade her that it was the same version as the one stored on SIPRNet. Nicks writes that it seemed as though Manning wanted to be caught.[70]

Afghan War logs, Iraq War logs[]

WikiLeaks and three media partners—The New York Times, The Guardian, and Der Spiegel—began publishing the 91,731 documents that became known as the Afghan War logs on July 25, 2010. This was followed on October 22, 2010, by 391,832 classified military reports covering the period January 2004 to December 2009; these became known as the Iraq War logs. Nicks writes that the publication of the former was a watershed moment, the "beginning of the information age exploding upon itself."[71]

Diplomatic cables, Guantanamo Bay files[]

Manning was also responsible for the "Cablegate" leak of 251,287 State Department cables, written by 271 American embassies and consulates in 180 countries, dated December 1966 to February 2010. The cables were passed by Assange to his three media partners, plus El País and others, and published in stages from November 28, 2010, with the names of sources removed. WikiLeaks said it was the largest set of classified documents ever released into the public domain.[72] The rest of the cables were published unredacted by WikiLeaks on September 1, 2011, after David Leigh and Luke Harding of The Guardian inadvertently published the passphrase for a file that was still online; Nicks writes that one Ethiopian journalist had to leave his country and the U.S. government said it had to relocate several sources.[73] Manning was also the source of the Guantanamo Bay files leak, obtained by WikiLeaks in 2010 and published by The New York Times on April 24, 2011.[74]

Granai airstrike[]

Manning said she gave WikiLeaks a video, in late March 2010, of the Granai airstrike in Afghanistan. The airstrike occurred on May 4, 2009, in the village of Granai, Afghanistan, killing 86 to 147 Afghan civilians. The video was never published; Julian Assange said in March 2013 that Daniel Domscheit-Berg had taken it with him when he left WikiLeaks, and had apparently destroyed it.[53]

Manning and Adrian Lamo[]

First contact[]


Adrian Lamo (left) and Wired's Kevin Poulsen (right) in 2001. The person in the middle, Kevin Mitnick, had no involvement in the Manning case.[75]

On May 20, 2010, Manning contacted Adrian Lamo, a former "grey hat" hacker convicted in 2004 of having accessed The New York Times computer network two years earlier without permission. Lamo had been profiled that day by Kevin Poulsen in Wired magazine; the story said Lamo had been involuntarily hospitalized and diagnosed with Asperger syndrome.[76] Poulsen, by then a reporter, was himself a former hacker who had used Lamo as a source several times since 2000.[75] Indeed it was Poulsen who, in 2002, had told The New York Times that Lamo had gained unauthorized access to its network; Poulsen then wrote the story up for SecurityFocus. Lamo would hack into a system, tell the organization, then offer to fix their security, often using Poulsen as a go-between.[77]

Lamo said Manning sent him several encrypted emails on May 20. He said he was unable to decrypt them but replied anyway and invited the emailer to chat on AOL IM. Lamo said he later turned the emails over to the FBI without having read them.[78]


In a series of chats between May 21 and 25, Manning—using the handle "bradass87"—told Lamo that she had leaked classified material. She introduced herself as an Army intelligence analyst, and within 17 minutes, without waiting for a reply, alluded to the leaks.[59]

Lamo replied several hours later. He said: "I'm a journalist and a minister. You can pick either, and treat this as a confession or an interview (never to be published) & enjoy a modicum of legal protection." They talked about restricted material in general, then Manning made her first explicit reference to the leaks: "This is what I do for friends." She linked to a section of the May 21, 2010, version of Wikipedia's article on WikiLeaks, which described the WikiLeaks release in March that year of a Department of Defense report on WikiLeaks itself. She added "the one below that is mine too"; the section below in the same article referred to the leak of the Baghdad airstrike ("Collateral Murder") video.[79] Manning said she felt isolated and fragile, and was reaching out to someone she hoped might understand.[59]

Manning said she had started to help WikiLeaks around Thanksgiving in November 2009—which fell on November 26 that year—after WikiLeaks had released the 9/11 pager messages; the messages were released on November 25. She told Lamo she had recognized that the messages came from an NSA database, and that seeing them had made her feel comfortable about stepping forward. Lamo asked what kind of material Manning was dealing with; Manning replied: "uhm ... crazy, almost criminal political backdealings ... the non-PR-versions of world events and crises ..." Although she said she dealt with Assange directly, Manning also said Assange had adopted a deliberate policy of knowing very little about her, telling Manning: "lie to me."[59]

Lamo again assured her that she was speaking in confidence. Manning wrote: "but im not a source for you ... im talking to you as someone who needs moral and emotional fucking support," and Lamo replied: "i told you, none of this is for print."[59]

Manning said the incident that had affected her the most was when 15 detainees had been arrested by the Iraqi Federal Police for printing anti-Iraqi literature. She was asked by the Army to find out who the "bad guys" were, and discovered that the detainees had followed what Manning said was a corruption trail within the Iraqi cabinet. She reported this to her commanding officer, but said "he didn't want to hear any of it"; she said the officer told her to help the Iraqi police find more detainees. Manning said it made her realize, "i was actively involved in something that i was completely against ..."[59]

She explained that "i cant separate myself from others ... i feel connected to everybody ... like they were distant family," and cited Carl Sagan, Richard Feynman and Elie Wiesel. She said she hoped the material would lead to "hopefully worldwide discussion, debates, and reforms. if not ... than [sic] we're doomed as a species." She said she had downloaded the material onto music CD-RWs, erased the music and replaced it with a compressed split file. Part of the reason no one noticed, she said, was that staff were working 14 hours a day, seven days a week, and "people stopped caring after 3 weeks."[59]

Lamo approaches authorities, chat logs published[]

Shortly after the first chat with Manning, Lamo discussed the information with Chet Uber of the volunteer group Project Vigilant, which researches cyber crime, and with a friend who had worked in military intelligence.[80] Both advised Lamo to go to the authorities. His friend reported the conversation to United States Army Counterintelligence, and Lamo was contacted by counterintelligence agents shortly thereafter.[81] He told them he believed Manning was endangering lives.[82] He was largely ostracized by the hacker community afterwards. Nicks argues, on the other hand, that it was thanks to Lamo that the government had months to ameliorate any harm caused by the release of the diplomatic cables.[83]

Lamo met with FBI and Army investigators on May 25 in California, and showed them the chat logs. On or around that date he also passed the story to Kevin Poulsen of Wired, and on May 27 gave him the chat logs and Manning's name under embargo. He met with the FBI again that day, at which point they told him Manning had been arrested in Iraq the day before. Poulsen and Kim Zetter broke the news of the arrest in Wired on June 6.[84] Wired published around 25 percent of the chat logs on June 6 and 10, and the full logs in July 2011, after the material about Manning's gender identity disorder had appeared elsewhere.[85]

Legal proceedings[]

Arrest and charges[]

Manning was arrested on May 27, 2010, and transferred four days later to Camp Arifjan in Kuwait.[86] She was charged with several offenses in July, replaced by 22 charges in March 2011, including violations of Articles 92 and 134 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), and of the Espionage Act. The most serious charge was "aiding the enemy," a capital offense, although prosecutors said they would not seek the death penalty.[87] Another charge (of which Manning was found guilty) read that Manning "wantonly [caused] to be published on the internet intelligence belonging to the US government, having knowledge that intelligence published on the internet is accessible to the enemy," which in the opinion of independent journalist Alexa O'Brien and Democracy Now!'s Amy Goodman, was an "unprecedented charge in military law" and which Manning's defense called a "made up offense."[88][89][90]


While in Kuwait, Manning was placed on suicide watch after her behavior caused concern.[91] She was moved from Kuwait to the Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, on July 29, 2010, and classified as a maximum custody detainee with Prevention of Injury (POI) status. POI status is one stop short of suicide watch, entailing checks by guards every five minutes. Her lawyer, David Coombs, a former military attorney, said Manning was not allowed to sleep between 5 am (7 am on weekends) and 8 pm, and was made to stand or sit up if she tried to. She was required to remain visible at all times, including at night, which entailed no access to sheets, no pillow except one built into her mattress, and a blanket designed not to be shredded.[92] Manning complained that she regarded it as pre-trial punishment.[93]

Her cell was 6 × 12 ft (1.8 x 3.6 m) with no window, containing a bed, toilet and sink. The jail had 30 cells built in a U shape, and although detainees could talk to one another, they were unable to see each other. Her lawyer said the guards behaved professionally, and had not tried to harass or embarrass Manning. She was allowed to walk for up to one hour a day, meals were taken in the cell, and she was shackled during visits. There was access to television when it was placed in the corridor, and she was allowed to keep one magazine and one book.[92] Because she was in pre-trial detention, she received full pay.[94]

On January 18, 2011, after an altercation with the guards, the commander of Quantico classified her as a suicide risk.[95] Manning said the guards had begun issuing conflicting commands, such as "turn left, don't turn left," and upbraiding her for responding to commands with "yes" instead of "aye." Shortly afterwards, she was placed on suicide watch, had her clothing and eyeglasses removed, and was required to remain in her cell 24 hours a day. The suicide watch was lifted on January 21 after a complaint from her lawyer, and the brig commander who ordered it was replaced.[96] On March 2 she was told that her request for the removal of her POI status had been denied. Her lawyer said Manning joked to the guards that, if she wanted to harm herself, she could do so with her underwear or her flip-flops. The comment resulted in her having her clothes removed at night, and she had to present herself naked one morning for inspection.[97]

The detention conditions prompted national and international concern. Juan E. Mendez, a United Nations Special Rapporteur on torture, published a report saying the detention conditions had been "cruel, inhuman and degrading."[98] In January 2011 Amnesty International asked the British government to intervene because of Manning's status as a British citizen by descent, although Manning's lawyer said Manning did not regard herself as a British citizen.[99] The controversy claimed a casualty in March that year when State Department spokesman Philip J. Crowley criticized Manning's treatment and resigned two days later.[100] In early April, 295 academics (most of them American legal scholars) signed a letter arguing that the treatment was a violation of the United States Constitution.[101] On April 20 the Pentagon transferred Manning to the Midwest Joint Regional Correctional Facility, a new medium-security facility in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where she was placed in an 80-square-foot cell with a window and a normal mattress, able to mix with other pre-trial detainees and keep personal objects in her cell.[102]

Evidence presented at Article 32 hearing[]

In April 2011, a panel of experts ruled that Manning was fit to stand trial.[103] An Article 32 hearing, presided over by Lieutenant Colonel Paul Almanza, was convened on December 16, 2011, at Fort Meade, Maryland; the hearing resulted in Almanza recommending that Manning be referred to a general court-martial. She was arraigned on February 23, 2012, and declined to enter a plea.[104]

During the Article 32 hearing, the prosecution, led by Captain Ashden Fein, presented 300,000 pages of documents in evidence, including chat logs and classified material.[105] The court heard from two Army investigators, Special Agent David Shaver, head of the digital forensics and research branch of the Army's Computer Crime Investigative Unit (CCIU), and Mark Johnson, a digital forensics contractor from ManTech International, who works for the CCIU. They testified that they had found 100,000 State Department cables on a workplace computer Manning had used between November 2009 and May 2010; 400,000 military reports from Iraq and 91,000 from Afghanistan on an SD card found in her basement room in her aunt's home in Potomac, Maryland; and 10,000 cables on her personal MacBook Pro and storage devices that they said had not been passed to WikiLeaks because a file was corrupted. They also recovered 14 to 15 pages of encrypted chats, in unallocated space on Manning's MacBook hard drive, between Manning and someone believed to be Julian Assange. Two of the chat handles, which used the Berlin Chaos Computer Club's domain (, were associated with the names Julian Assange and Nathaniel Frank.[46]

Johnson said he found SSH logs on the MacBook that showed an SFTP connection, from an IP address that resolved to Manning's aunt's home, to a Swedish IP address with links to WikiLeaks.[46] Also found was a the text file named "Readme", attached to the logs and apparently written by Manning to Assange, which called the Iraq and Afghan War logs "possibly one of the most significant documents of our time, removing the fog of war and revealing the true nature of 21st century asymmetric warfare."[43] The investigators testified they had also recovered an exchange from May 2010 between Manning and Eric Schmiedl, a Boston mathematician, in which Manning said she was the source of the Baghdad helicopter attack ("Collateral Murder") video. Johnson said there had been two attempts to delete material from the MacBook. The operating system had been re-installed in January 2010, and on or around January 31, 2010, an attempt had been made to erase the hard drive by doing a "zero-fill," which involves overwriting material with zeroes. The material was recovered after the overwrite attempts from unallocated space.[46]

Manning's lawyers argued that the government had overstated the harm the release of the documents had caused, and had overcharged Manning to force her to give evidence against Assange. The defense also raised the issue of whether Manning's gender identity disorder had affected her judgment, and whether the "don't ask, don't tell" policy had made it difficult for her to serve in the Army.[106]

Guilty plea, trial, sentence[]

United States v. Manning
Court United States Army Military District of Washington
Full case name United States of America v. Manning, Bradley E., PFC
Decided July 30, 2013
Case history
Prior action(s) Article 32 hearing, opened December 16, 2011
Formally charged, February 23, 2012
Article 39 (pre-trial) hearing, opened April 24, 2012
Court membership
Judge sitting Colonel Denise Lind

The judge, Army Colonel Denise Lind, accepted terms in December 2012 that would allow Manning to plead guilty to lesser charges in exchange for a maximum sentence of 16 years.[107] Colonel Lind ruled in January 2013 that the sentence be reduced by 112 days because of the treatment Manning received at Quantico.[108] Manning pleaded guilty to 10 of the 22 charges on February 28.[8] Reading for over an hour from a 35-page statement, she said she had leaked the cables "to show the true cost of war." Prosecutors pursued a court-martial on the remaining charges.[109]

The trial began on June 3, 2013. Manning was convicted on July 30, 17 of the 22 charges in their entirety, including five counts of espionage and theft, and an amended version of four other charges; she was acquitted of aiding the enemy. The sentencing phase began the next day.[1]

Captain Michael Worsley, a military psychologist who had treated Manning before her arrest, testified that Manning had been left isolated in the Army, trying to deal with gender-identity issues in a "hyper-masculine environment."[110] Captain David Moulton, a psychiatrist who saw Manning after the arrest, said Manning had narcissistic traits, and showed signs of both fetal alcohol syndrome and Asperger syndrome. He said that, in leaking the material, Manning had been "acting out [a] grandiose ideation."[111]

On August 14, Manning apologized to the court: "I am sorry that my actions hurt people. I'm sorry that they hurt the United States. I am sorry for the unintended consequences of my actions. When I made these decisions I believed I was going to help people, not hurt people. ... At the time of my decisions I was dealing with a lot of issues."[110]

Manning's offenses carried a maximum sentence of 90 years.[112] The government asked for 60 years as a deterrent to others, while Manning's lawyer asked for no more than 25 years. She was sentenced on August 21 to 35 years' imprisonment, reduction in rank to Private, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and a dishonorable discharge. She was given credit for 1,293 days of pre-trial confinement, including 112 days for her treatment at Quantico, and will be eligible for parole after serving one-third of the sentence.[2] There may also be additional credit for good behavior, which means she could be released after eight years.[112] She is incarcerated at the United States Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.[9]

Request for presidential pardon[]

On September 3, 2013, Manning's lawyer applied for a presidential pardon for his client. Coombs filed a Petition for Pardon/Commutation of Sentence to President Obama through the pardon attorney at the Department of Justice and Secretary of the Army John M. McHugh.[113] The petition was filed with the legal name "Bradley Manning," used male-gender pronouns, and asked that Manning be pardoned outright or the sentence reduced to time served. Coombs contended that Manning's disclosures did not cause any "real damage," and that the documents in question did not merit protection as they were not sensitive. The request for a pardon included a supporting letter from Amnesty International which said that Manning's leaks had exposed violations of human rights. Coombs's letter touched on Manning's role as a whistleblower, asking that Manning be granted a full pardon or that her sentence be reduced to time served.[114]

Reaction to disclosures[]

The publication of the leaked material, particularly the diplomatic cables, attracted in-depth coverage across the globe, with several governments blocking websites that contained embarrassing details. Alan Rusbridger, editor of The Guardian, said: "I can't think of a time when there was ever a story generated by a news organisation where the White House, the Kremlin, Chávez, India, China, everyone in the world was talking about these things. ... I've never known a story that created such mayhem that wasn't an event like a war or a terrorist attack."[115]


Billboard erected in Washington, D.C., by the Private Manning Support Network

Denver Nicks wrote that Manning's name "appended like a slogan to wholesale denunciations and exultations alike." United States Navy Admiral Michael Mullen, then Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the leaks had placed the lives of American soldiers and Afghan informants in danger. Journalist Glenn Greenwald argued that Manning was the most important whistleblower since Daniel Ellsberg leaked the Pentagon Papers in 1971.[116] President Barack Obama commented too, saying that Manning "broke the law"; Eugene Fidell of the National Institute of Military Justice called the remark "unlawful command influence."[117]

Manning and WikiLeaks were credited as catalysts for the Arab Spring that began in December 2010, when waves of protesters rose up against rulers across the Middle East and North Africa, after the leaked cables exposed government corruption.[118] Heather Brooke writes that, in Tunisia, where the uprisings began on December 17 with the self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi in protest at being unable to make a living, one of the cables—published around 10 days earlier—showed that the President's daughter and her husband had their ice cream flown in from Saint-Tropez.[119] As TIME magazine designated "the protester" as its 2011 person of the year, Brooke writes that WikiLeaks came under tremendous pressure, experiencing distributed denial-of-service attacks that shut down their servers, and finding themselves unable to receive donations when PayPal, banks, and credit-card companies refused to process them.[120]

A Washington Post editorial asked why an apparently unstable Army private had been able to access and transfer sensitive material in the first place. According to Nicks, Manning's sexuality came into play too, with Manning illustrating for the far right that gay people were unfit for military service, while the mainstream media presented her as a gay soldier driven mad by bullying.[121]

Gender transition[]

On August 22, 2013, the day after sentencing, Manning's attorney issued a press release to the Today show announcing that she is a female, and asked that she be referred to by her new name (Chelsea) and feminine pronouns:

{{quote|As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me. I am Chelsea Manning. I am a female. Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible. I hope that you will support me in this transition. I also request that, starting today, you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun (except in official mail to the confinement facility). I look forward to receiving letters from supporters and having the opportunity to write back.

Immediate reaction to Manning's request was split. While Reuters, The Guardian and the Daily Mail changed name and pronouns immediately in accordance with Manning's request, many news outlets initially continued to use the former name and male pronouns, including CNN, ABC News, The Boston Globe, the New York Daily News, the New York Post, Politico, The Daily Telegraph, The Times and the Los Angeles Times.[122] Within a week, The Daily Telegraph[123] and The Times[124] had published stories referring to Manning as female, and ABC, the New York Daily News and Politico carried a story from AP using female pronouns.[125] This split in usage itself was reported on in the media.[126] The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association, and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) encouraged media outlets to refer to Manning by her self-identified name and pronoun.[127][128][129] Several media outlets noted Wikipedia's early rename of the page title from Bradley Manning to Chelsea Manning, in advance of other media sources.[130][131] Wikipedia was then critiqued when the page was reverted to Bradley Manning a week later, including a critical blog post by Wikimedia Foundation executive director Sue Gardner.[132][133][134] After further discussion, Manning's Wikipedia page was again renamed to Chelsea Manning on October 8, 2013.[135]

See also[]

Material associated with Manning
  • Contents of the United States diplomatic cables leak
  • Reactions to the United States diplomatic cables leak


  • Note: Sources that are used repeatedly or are central to the article are presented in shortened form in this section, as are books; for full citations for those sources, see the References section below. Other sources are cited in full in this section.
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Tate, Julie and Londono, Ernesto. "Bradley Manning found not guilty of aiding the enemy, convicted on other charges", The Washington Post, July 30, 2013.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Tate, Julie. "Judge sentences Bradley Manning to 35 years", The Washington Post, August 21, 2013.
  3. Lewis, Paul. "Bradley Manning given 35-year prison term for passing files to WikiLeaks", The Guardian, August 21, 2013.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Manning, Chelsea E. "The Next Stage of My Life", press release, August 22, 2013: "As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me. I am Chelsea Manning. I am a female. Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible. ... I also request that, starting today, you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun (except in official mail to the confinement facility). ... Thank you, Chelsea E. Manning"
  5. Leigh and Harding 2011, pp. 194ff, 211.
  6. Nicks, September 23, 2010.
  7. For the letter from the legal scholars, see Ackerman, Bruce and Benkler, Yochai. "Private Manning’s Humiliation", The New York Review of Books. Retrieved April 5, 2011 (see a later correction here [1]).
  8. 8.0 8.1 "Judge accepts Manning's guilty pleas in WikiLeaks case", CBS News, February 28, 2013.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Hanna, John. "Manning to Serve Sentence at Famous Leavenworth", Associated Press, August 21, 2013.
  10. For the comparisons, see Nicks 2012, p. 3, and for the Arab Spring, pp. 212–216.
  11. "Lengthy prison term for Bradley Manning", Reporters Without Borders, August 21, 2013.
  12. Fishman, July 3, 2011, pp. 2–3.
  13. Tate, Julie. "Manning apologizes, says he 'hurt the United States'", The Washington Post, August 14, 2013.
  14. For the diet, height and being small for her age, see Lewis, Paul. "Bradley Manning trial revealed a lonely soldier with a troubled past", The Guardian, August 21, 2013.
  15. For her mother not adjusting, Manning fending for herself, and the neighbor, see Thompson, August 8, 2010, p. 1.
  16. Nicks, September 23, 2010.
  17. For the interview with the father, see Smith, March 2011, from 02:25 mins (transcript).
  18. Nicks 2012, pp. 19–20.
  19. Lewis, Paul. "Bradley Manning trial revealed a lonely soldier with a troubled past", The Guardian, August 21, 2013.
  20. 20.0 20.1 Nakashima, May 4, 2011.
  21. For the views of her schoolfriend (James Kirkpatrick), see Caesar, December 19, 2010.
  22. For being the only American in the school and being impersonated, see Leigh and Harding 2011, p. 24.
  23. On her way through London to renew her passport, Manning arrived at the King's Cross underground station on the day of the 7 July 2005 London bombings, and said she heard the sirens and the screaming. See Hansen, July 13, 2011, and Nicks 2012, pp. 23–24.
  24. Fishman, July 3, 2011, p. 3.
  25. Nicks 2012, pp. 24–25, 51–56.
    • Also see:
    *Fishman, July 3, 2011, p. 3.
    *Nakashima, May 4, 2011.
    *For the jobs, see "Bradley Manning's Facebook Page", PBS Frontline, March 2011.
  26. Nicks 2012, p. 57.
  27. 27.0 27.1 Reeve, Elspeth. "A Portrait of the Mind of Bradley Manning", The Atlantic Wire, August 14, 2013.
  28. Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 2.
  29. For concerns about her stability, see Nakashima, May 4, 2011.
    • For basic training and the video interview with the soldier, see Smith, Teresa et al. "The madness of Bradley Manning?", The Guardian, May 27, 2011; soldier's interview begins 07:10 mins.
    • For the drill sergeants and "General Manning," see Nicks 2012, p. 62.
  30. For restarting basic training in January 2008, see Nicks 2012, p. 73.
  31. Nicks 2012, p. 82.
  32. Leigh and Harding 2011, pp. 27–28; Nicks 2012, p. 83.
  33. For her introduction to the hacker community, see Leigh and Harding 2011, pp. 27–28.
  34. For the introduction to lobbyists and others, see Nicks 2012, p. 85.
    • For the emotional problems and referral to a counselor, see Fishman, July 3, 2011, p. 1, and Nicks 2012, p. 114.
  35. For the films, see Nicks 2012, p. 88.
  36. For her time in Fort Polk, and for "risk to himself and possibly others," see Nicks 2012, pp. 114–115; for Forward Operating Base Hammer, see pp. 123–124.
  37. Fishman, July 3, 2011, p. 5.
  38. For the fairy wand, see Thompson, August 8, 2010, p. 2.
  39. Fishman, July 3, 2011, p. 4.
  40. Nicks 2012, pp. 133–134.
  41. "Bradley Manning's Facebook Page", PBS Frontline, March 2011, and Blake, Heidi; Bingham, John; and Rayner, Gordon. "Bradley Manning, suspected source of WikiLeaks documents, raged on his Facebook page", The Daily Telegraph, July 30, 2010.
  42. Hansen, July 13, 2011.
  43. 43.0 43.1 43.2 Nicks 2012, pp. 137–138; also see Zetter, December 19, 2011.
  44. 44.0 44.1 Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 13.
  45. Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 16.
  46. 46.0 46.1 46.2 46.3 46.4 46.5 For the army investigators' testimony, see Zetter, December 19, 2011.
  47. Nicks 2012, pp. 131–135, 137–138.
  48. Poulsen and Zetter, June 6, 2010.
  49. Manning, January 29, 2013, pp. 15–16.
  50. 50.0 50.1 Myers, Steven Lee. "Charges for Soldier Accused of Leak", The New York Times, July 6, 2010.
  51. Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 18.
  52. Hansen, July 13, 2011.
  53. 53.0 53.1 Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 33.
    • But note: WikiLeaks tweeted on January 8, 2010, that they had obtained "encrypted videos of US bomb strikes on civilians," and linked to a story about the airstrike; see "Have encrypted videos ...", Twitter, January 8, 2010 (archived from the original, May 8, 2012). The tweet said: "Have encrypted videos of US bomb strikes on civilians we need super computer time"
  54. Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 31.
  55. 55.0 55.1 Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 23.
  56. 56.0 56.1 Nicks 2012, pp. 162–163.
  57. Lewis, Paul. "Bradley Manning supervisor 'ignored photo of soldier dressed as woman'", The Guardian, August 13, 2013.
  58. Radia, Kirit and Martinez, Luis. "Bradley Manning Defense Reveals Alter Ego Named 'Breanna Manning'", ABC News, December 17, 2011.
  59. 59.00 59.01 59.02 59.03 59.04 59.05 59.06 59.07 59.08 59.09 59.10 Hansen, July 13, 2011; also see Nicks 2012, pp. 171–184.
  60. Nicks 2012, p. 164, and "Bradley Manning's Facebook Page", PBS Frontline, March 2011.
  61. For the storage cupboard, the psychiatrist, and the recommended discharge, see Nakashima, May 4, 2011.
  62. Dishneau, David and Jelinek, Pauline. "Witness: Manning said leak would lift 'fog of war'", Associated Press, December 19, 2011.
    • Also see Nicks 2012, p. 164.
  63. 63.0 63.1 Leigh and Harding 2011, pp. 52–56.
  64. For WikiLeaks security, see Domscheit-Berg 2011, p. 165.
  65. Nicks 2012, p. 155.
  66. For the publishing sequence, see Leigh and Harding 2010, p. 70.
    • For the leak of the Defense Dept report on WikiLeaks, see Kravets, David. "Secret Document Calls Wikileaks ‘Threat’ to U.S. Army", Wired, March 15, 2010.
    • For the Defense Dept report itself, see Assange, Julian. "U.S. intelligence planned to destroy WikiLeaks", WikiLeaks release on March 15, 2010, of Horvath, Michael D. " – An Online Reference to Foreign Intelligence Services, Insurgents, or Terrorist Groups?", United States Army Counterintelligence Center, Department of Defense Counterintelligence Analysis Program, March 18, 2008.
  67. Unedited version
  68. edited version
  69. Also see Open Secrets: WikiLeaks, War and American Diplomacy, The New York Times Company, 2011.
  70. 70.0 70.1 Nicks 2012, pp. 157–161.
  71. For Nicks's analysis, see Nicks 2012, pp. 191–193; for the number of documents in the Afghan and Iraq War logs and Cablegate, and for the publication dates, see pp. 204, 206.
    • Note: there were 91,731 documents in all in the Afghan War logs; around 77,000 had been published as of May 2012.
  72. Leigh and Harding, 2010, p. 70 for the publishing sequence; pp. 194ff for the material WikiLeaks published; and p. 211 for the number of documents and comment from WikiLeaks.
  73. For the Ethiopian journalist and the relocation of sources, see Nicks 2012, p. 208.
    • For the inadvertent publication of the passphrase, see:
  74. Leigh, David. "Guantánamo leaks lift lid on world's most controversial prison", The Guardian, April 25, 2011; and Nicks 2012, p. 153.
  75. 75.0 75.1 For Poulsen's relationship with Lamo, see Last, January 11, 2011.
  76. For Poulsen's article about Lamo, see Poulsen, May 20, 2010.
  77. Hulme, George V. "With Friends Like This", InformationWeek, July 8, 2002.
  78. Greenwald, June 18, 2010.
    • Greenwald, Glenn. Email exchange between Glenn Greenwald and Kevin Poulsen, June 14–17, 2010.
    • Greenwald wrote: "Lamo told me that Manning first emailed him on May 20 and, according to highly edited chat logs released by Wired, had his first online chat with Manning on May 21; in other words, Manning first contacted Lamo the very day that Poulsen's Wired article on Lamo's involuntary commitment appeared (the Wired article is time-stamped 5:46 p.m. on May 20).

      "Lamo, however, told me that Manning found him not from the Wired article—which Manning never mentioned reading—but from searching the word 'WikiLeaks' on Twitter, which led her to a tweet Lamo had written that included the word 'WikiLeaks.' Even if Manning had really found Lamo through a Twitter search for 'WikiLeaks,' Lamo could not explain why Manning focused on him, rather than the thousands of other people who have also mentioned the word 'WikiLeaks' on Twitter, including countless people who have done so by expressing support for WikiLeaks."

  79. Hansen, July 13, 2011.
  80. Nicks 2012, p. 179.
  81. Dishneau, David. "Ex-agent says he alerted DoD in WikiLeaks case", Associated Press, August 4, 2010.
  82. Caesar, December 19, 2010.
  83. Nicks 2012, p. 232.
  84. For the first Wired story, see Poulsen and Zetter, June 6, 2010.
  85. Hansen and Poulsen, December 28, 2010.
  86. Poulsen and Zetter, June 16, 2010.
  87. Nicks 2012, p. 247.
  88. Alexa O'Brien (June 30, 2013). "US v Pfc. Manning | Criminal Elements and Definitions for Wanton Publication and State Dept, CIA, FBI, and Classified Witnesses". Retrieved September 30, 2013. 
  89. see p5.
  91. Pilkington, Ed. "Bradley Manning: how keeping himself sane was taken as proof of madness", The Guardian, November 30, 2012.
  92. 92.0 92.1 For a description of the jail, see Nakashima, Ellen. "In brig, WikiLeaks suspect Bradley Manning ordered to sleep without clothing", The Washington Post, March 5, 2011.
    • For Manning's lawyer's description, see "A Typical Day for PFC Bradley Manning", The Law Offices of David E. Coombs, December 18, 2010; archived from the original on April 6, 2012.
    • For Manning's description, see Manning, March 10, 2011, particularly pp. 10–11.
    • For the books she requested, see Nicks, Denver. "Bradley Manning's Life Behind Bars", The Daily Beast, December 17, 2010. The list was: Decision Points by George W. Bush; Critique of Practical Reason by Immanuel Kant; Critique of Pure Reason by Immanuel Kant; Propaganda by Edward Bernayse; The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins; A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn; The Art of War by Sun Tzu; The Good Soldiers by David Finke; and On War by Gen. Carl von Clausewitz.
  93. Manning, March 10, 2011, p. 7.
  94. Marshall, Serena. "Court-Martial for Bradley Manning in Wikileaks Case?", ABC News, December 22, 2011, p. 2.
  95. Manning's lawyer David Coombs suicide watch timeline
  96. Nicks 2012, pp. 240–242.
  97. Manning, March 10, 2011, p. 9ff.
  98. Pilkington, Ed. "Bradley Manning's treatment was cruel and inhuman, UN torture chief rules", The Guardian, March 12, 2012.
  99. Pilkington, Ed; Chris McGreal & Steven Morris. "Bradley Manning is UK citizen and needs protection, government told", The Guardian, February 1, 2011.
    • For Manning's view of her nationality, see Coombs, David E. "Clarification Regarding PFC Manning's Citizenship", Law Offices of David E. Coombs, February 2, 2011: "There has been some discussion regarding PFC Bradley Manning's citizenship. PFC Manning does not hold a British passport, nor does he consider himself a British citizen. He is an American, and is proud to be serving in the United States Army. His current confinement conditions are troubling to many both here in the United States and abroad. This concern, however, is not a citizenship issue."
  100. Nakashima, Ellen. "WikiLeaks suspect's treatment 'stupid,' U.S. official says", The Washington Post, March 12, 2011.
  101. They argued that it was a violation of the Eighth Amendment's prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment, and the Fifth Amendment's guarantee against punishment without trial. See Ackerman, Bruce and Benkler, Yochai. "Private Manning’s Humiliation", The New York Review of Books. Retrieved April 10, 2011.
  102. Pilkington, Ed. "Bradley Manning's jail conditions improve dramatically after protest campaign", The Guardian, May 4, 2011.
  103. "Panel Says WikiLeaks Suspect Is Competent to Stand Trial", Associated Press, April 29, 2011.
  104. Rizzo, Jennifer "Bradley Manning charged", CNN, February 23, 2012.
  105. Rath, Arun. "What Happened At Bradley Manning’s Hearing This Week?", PBS Frontline, December 22, 2011.
  106. For the government overcharging Manning, see Zetter, Kim. "Army Piles on Evidence in Final Arguments in WikiLeaks Hearing", Wired, December 22, 2011.
  107. Pone, Alyssa. "Bradley Manning Offers Guilty Pleas", ABC News, November 8, 2012.
  108. Tate, Julie and Nakashima, Ellen. "Judge refuses to dismiss charges against WikiLeaks suspect Bradley Manning", The Washington Post, January 8, 2013.
  109. O'Brien, Alexa. "Bradley Manning's full statement", Salon, March 1, 2013.
  110. 110.0 110.1 Kube, Courtney; DeLuca, Matthew; McClam, Erin. "I'm sorry that I hurt the United States': Bradley Manning apologizes in court", NBC News, August 14, 2013.
  111. Hartmann, Margaret. "Ahead of His Sentencing, Bradley Manning Says, ‘I’m Sorry I Hurt the United States’", New York Times magazine, August 15, 2013.
  112. 112.0 112.1 Sledge, Matt. "Bradley Manning Sentenced To 35 Years In Prison For WikiLeaks Disclosures ", Huffington Post, August 21, 2013.
  113. Coombs, David (September 3, 2013). "Re: Pardon/Commutation Request For Private Bradley E. Manning". 
  114. "Bradley Manning seeks presidential pardon", CBS News, September 4, 2013.
  115. Brooke 2011, p. 223.
  116. For the quote from Nicks, see Nicks 2012, pp. 3, 196–197.
  117. "Video Of Obama On Bradley Manning: 'He Broke The Law'", Forbes, April 22, 2011.
  118. Horne, Nigel. "Tunisia: WikiLeaks had a part in Ben Ali's downfall", The Week, January 15, 2011.
  119. For the ice cream from Saint-Tropez, see Brooke 2011, p. 225.
  120. "Time's Person of the Year: the Protester", Time magazine, December 14, 2011.
    • For WikiLeaks coming under pressure, see Brooke 2011, p. 223.
  121. For the The Washington Post editorial, see "The right response to WikiLeaks", The Washington Post, editorial, November 30, 2010.
    • For gays in the military, see Nicks 2012, p. 196: "Suddenly Brad Manning was a touchstone for two of the issues at the forefront of the American zeitgeist. To the far right he was clear evidence that gays were unfit for military service. And in the American mainstream, the leaks were explained away as the actions of a disaffected homosexual who had come to hate the army after being bullied into madness."
  122. O'Connor, Maureen (August 22, 2013). "Why Is It So Hard to Call Chelsea Manning ‘She’?". New York (magazine). Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  123. Newman, Cathy (August 23, 2013). "Prison will not be kind to Chelsea Manning". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved August 29, 2013. 
  124. Frean, Alexandra (August 23, 2013). "‘I am Chelsea, I am female’, says soldier formerly known as Bradley Manning". The Times. Retrieved August 29, 2013. 
  125. "New details on Manning's gender change". ABC. August 27, 2013. Retrieved August 29, 2013.  "Bradley Manning announces that he wants live as woman, Chelsea". New York Daily News. August 27, 2013. Retrieved August 29, 2013. "Bradley Manning explains gender change". Politico. August 26, 2013. Retrieved August 29, 2013. 
  126. Carmon, Irin (August 27, 2013). "Who is still calling Chelsea Manning ‘he?’". MSNBC. Retrieved August 29, 2013. 
  127. Heffernan, Dani (August 22, 2013). "Reporting On Private Chelsea Manning With Consistent Respect For Gender Identity". GLAAD. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  128. "NLGJA Encourages Journalists to be Fair and Accurate About Manning’s Plans to Live as a Woman". National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. August 22, 2013. Retrieved August 28, 2013. 
  129. Krehely, Jeff (22). "Pvt. Chelsea E. Manning Comes Out, Deserves Respectful Treatment by Media and Officials". HRC Blog. Human Rights Campaign. Retrieved September 19, 2013. "…journalists and other officials should use her chosen name of Chelsea and refer to her with female pronouns. Using the name Bradley or male pronouns is nothing short of an insult. Media, having reported on her wishes, must respect them as is the standard followed by the AP Stylebook." 
  130. Mark Joseph Stern (August 22, 2013). "Wikipedia Beats Major News Organizations, Perfectly Reflects Chelsea Manning’s New Gender". Retrieved August 22, 2013. 
  131. Justine Sharrock (August 22, 2013). "Wikipedia Changed Its Entry To Properly Reflect Chelsea Manning’s Name". Retrieved August 23, 2013. 
  132. Jay Hathaway (August 31, 2013). "Wikipedia decides Chelsea Manning will remain 'Bradley' for now". The Daily Dot. Retrieved August 31, 2013. 
  133. Alex Hern (September 4, 2013). "Chelsea Manning gets put back in the closet by Wikipedia". New Statesman. Retrieved September 4, 2013. 
  134. Sue Gardner (September 4, 2013). "How Wikipedia got it wrong on Chelsea Manning, and why". Retrieved October 24, 2013. 
  135. Hern, Alex (25 October 2013). "Chelsea Manning name row: Wikipedia editors banned from trans pages". Retrieved 25 October 2013. 


Most sources are cited in full in the Notes section. Books and articles used multiple times are cited in short form in Notes and in long form below.
  • Brooke, Heather. The Revolution Will Be Digitised. William Heinemann, 2011.
  • Domscheit-Berg, Daniel. Inside WikiLeaks. Doubleday, 2011.
  • Fowler, Andrew. The Most Dangerous Man in the World. Skyhorse Publishing, 2011.
  • Leigh, David and Harding, Luke. WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange's War on Secrecy. Guardian Books, 2011.
  • Nicks, Denver. Private: Bradley Manning, WikiLeaks, and the Biggest Exposure of Official Secrets in American History. Chicago Review Press, 2012.
Key articles
Key articles on the Lamo-Manning chat log, in order of publication

Further reading[]

  • Assange, Julian and O'Hagan, Andrew. Julian Assange: The Unauthorised Autobiography. Canongate, 2011.
  • Madar, Chase. The Passion of Bradley Manning. OR Books, 2012.
  • Mitchell, Greg and Gosztola, Kevin. Truth and Consequences: The U.S. vs. Bradley Manning. Sinclair Books, 2012.

External links[]

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