Private Manning Remains Controversial

From the Washington Post:

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Army Pvt. Chelsea Manning, who was previously known as Bradley Manning, wants estrogen treatments that would promote breast development and other female characteristics, which she’d be willing to pay for, while she’s incarcerated at the all-men military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., her lawyer said.

Attorney David Coombs told The Associated Press on Monday that Manning hoped the military prison “will simply do the right thing” based on their request for hormone treatment so the soldier will not have to sue in military or civilian court. Coombs said at this point, Manning does not want sex-reassignment surgery and expects to be kept with men in prison where she’s serving time for leaking mountains of classified material to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks…

It wasn’t until they read a Courthouse News Service story that Manning decided to make the announcement. The story quoted prison spokeswoman Kimberly Lewis saying the prison would not provide hormone therapy. It was published Aug. 20, the day before Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for the leaks.

“It was Chelsea’s intent to do this all along,” Coombs said. “It was only after Fort Leavenworth had said that they would not provide any sort of medical treatment that we decided not to wait.”

Coombs said at this point, Manning does not want sex-reassignment surgery and expects to be kept with men in prison. Also, Coombs said he had seen online people objecting to taxpayer-funded hormone therapy and said if the Army wouldn’t pay for it, Manning would…

“It’s just to be comfortable in her own skin,” Coombs said…

In related news, turns out the Army really does represent all America, though not always officially, per Slate:

Brynn Tannehill is a former Navy helicopter pilot who condemns the actions of Bradley—now Chelsea—Manning. Tannehill used to fly naval attack helicopters, not entirely unlike the Apache helicopters shown in “Collateral Murder,” the video Manning sent to WikiLeaks revealing U.S. air strikes in Baghdad that left two Reuters journalists and a number of unarmed people dead. But after working as a pilot and analyst over 10 years and four deployments, Tannehill had to drop out of the military in 2010, when she began transitioning from a man to a woman.

Tannehill, who is now the director of advocacy at SPART*A, an organization that advocates for the rights of trans men and women serving in the military, worries Manning’s actions reflect badly on trans service members. “If you’re wondering if she’s being embraced as a hero in the military trans community, she is absolutely not,” Tannehill says. “People in our group can empathize with the strain that being transgender and closeted in the military causes, but we do not in any way, shape, or form think this excuses or mitigates what she did.”

The U.S. military doesn’t allow openly trans men and women to serve, even though it’s estimated that 20 percent of trans people have served, compared to 10 percent of the general U.S. population….



Manning Sentencing Open Thread UPDATE Sentenced to 35 years.

Judge (COL) Denise Lind is going to issue PFC Manning’s sentence here in the next few minutes (1000hrs Eastern time).

A few quick notes–PFC Manning has 1312 days of sentence credit, including 110 days for unnecessarily harsh conditions at Quantico  Marine Base Brig.  That’s about 3.5 years give or take.  Additionally, he will receive 5 days of sentencing credit for every 30 days of good behavior, and this works out to approximately 60 days per year.  Any sentence of less than 10 years will be served at a Regional Confinement Facility, such as the Midwest Joint Regional Correctional Facility on the grounds of Fort Leavenworth, KS.  This is not part of the big military prison there, but rather a separate facility.  PFC Manning was confined at MJRCF for his pre-trial confinement after transfer from QMB.  Any sentence over 10 years will be served at the US Disciplinary Barracks, which is the big military prison on Fort Leavenworth.

Once the trial is complete, a full record of the trial will be forwarded to the Commanding General of the Military District of Washington, who is the Convening Authority for this court-martial.  He may approve or disprove the findings (guilt or innocence) or the sentence in whole or in part.  Assuming that he approves a sentence in excess of one year of confinement or a punitive discharge (dishonorable or bad conduct discharge) the case will automatically be docketed with the Army Court of Criminal Appeals under Art. 66, UCMJ.  The CA may not increase the punishment adjudged.

ACCA may approve or disprove the findings or the sentence in whole or in part.   They can reduce the sentence, delete the sentence, or return the record of trial to the Convening Authority to convene a new hearing as appropriate.  Once ACCA rules, the accused may appeal to the Court of Appeals of the Armed Forces.  CAAF, assuming they hear the case, may act under the same strictures as ACCA.  The Government can also appeal the case to CAAF by having the The Adjutant General of the Army certify the case to CAAF.  In no case can either ACCA or CAAF increase the punishment.  Assuming that CAAF agrees to hear the case, and then finds against PFC Manning, he will have the right to appeal to the SCOTUS, but only if CAAF hears the case.  If CAAF does not hear the case, then appeal to SCOTUS is not permitted.

While all this is going on, Manning’s sentence will be reviewed by the Army Clemency and Parole Board, which may at their sole unreviewable discretion reduce or eliminate the sentence.

Again, all errors in the preceding are mine and mine alone.  Open Thread.

UPDATE: Accused Fort Hood shooter MAJ Nidal Hassan rested his defense case in his capital Court Martial without calling any witnesses or making any statement.

UPDATE:  Judge Lind has sentenced PFC Manning to 35 years according to persons tweeting form the trial.

UPDATE: Manning will be eligible for parole after 1/3 of his sentence is served.  So about 13 years.  With time off for sentencing credit, that works out to around 9.5 years before parole, and as I mentioned above, there are several levels of review yet to go.








Manning Trial Update and Open Thread

I would have posted something yesterday, but I was busy having a tornado shelter installed in my garage.

Again, for the record, I have consulted with Attorneys who practice at the military bar, both locally here in OKC and via email to others.  None of them are associated with the case in any way.  Any errors in my statements are mine and mine alone.  I try very hard to get what they tell me correct, but there’s a reason they are the lawyers and I am the grunt. Read more








Manning Court Martial Update

On Monday, the Trial Counsel rested their sentencing phase case in chief.  Yesterday, the Defense began their sentencing case, and then and this morning, the Defense put on two military psychiatrists, an Army Captain (O-3) who treated PFC Manning prior to his fateful deployment, and a Navy Captain (O-6) who interviewed PFC Manning extensively for his RCM 706 (sanity) board.  Both doctors were called by the Defense, and testified about their dealings with Manning as a patient and subject.  Both doctors stated that Manning has gender identity disorder and narcissistic personality traits.  Both, according to CNN and the Washington Post testified that these were contributing factors in PFC Manning’s misconduct.  I do not know at this time how they testified under cross examination by the Trial Counsel.  Note that the RCM 706 board found that PFC Manning was legally sane at the time he engaged his misconduct and was further able to assist in his own defense.

PFC Manning’s aunt and sister will apparently take the stand today, and the Defense has announced that PFC Manning will address the Court.  I haven’t been able to find anything as to whether it will be a sworn testimony, subject to cross examination and the penalties of perjury or it will be an unsworn statement (something not available in civilian court.)

As per all of these posts, you may find unofficial transcripts here, provided by the Freedom of the Press Foundation.  You might wish to consider tossing them some coin if you find their service useful.  Additionally, here is the link to the Army’s FOIA Reading Room for the Manning trial, including all of the unclassified case filings and rulings.

Also too, open thread

UPDATE: PFC Manning is addressing the Court right now.  I do not have any information as to whether or not it is the sworn or unsworn statement.  According to Breaking News twitter feed, “Bradley Manning tells court-martial he apologizes for his actions, says he hurt US – @Reuters

UPDATE 2: PFC Manning’s statements to the Court are an unsworn statement, per AP.

Read more








Mid-day Balloon-Jobs Thread

We haven’t had one of these in a while.  You all know how it works.  If you need work or know of people who do, post some basic resume/work wanted info and so forth.  If you have work or know of people who do, post that.  Let’s help each other out.

As always from me, please check out http:www.usajobs.gov because the US Federal government is a great employer, and we’re still hiring.

On a side note, Judge (COL) Lind has approved at least part of the Defense motion to combine charges for sentencing purposes, and reduced PFC Manning’s punitive exposure from a maximum of 136 years to a new maximum of 90 years.  Many of the people I’ve talked to expect a sentence in the 10 to 20 year range.  Testimony is continuing today with more personnel from the State Department.    Open thread.

One more thing: Drunk fish have no fear of robots.