In her first statement since being sentenced, Chelsea Manning, formerly Pfc. Bradley Manning, said she leaked classified U.S. information in the name of transparency.
Chelsea Manning issued her first post-sentencing statement Oct. 9, telling the Guardian that she is a "transparency advocate" and doesn't consider herself a pacifist -- a label some public profiles of her have used to explain her actions.
"It's not terribly clear to me that my actions were explicitly done for "peace"… I feel that the public cannot decide what actions and policies are or are not justified if they don't even know the most rudimentary details about them and their effects." Chelsea Manning
Manning is now serving 35 years in prison for leaking classified U.S. info to WikiLeaks. Her rank was reduced and she was dishonorably discharged. After her sentencing in September she asked for a presidential pardon and release from prison. A pardon is seen as unlikely.
"The decisions that I made in 2010 were made out of a concern for my country and the world we live in." Army Pvt. Chelsea Manning
Manning's case will be immediately reviewed by the convening authority, Maj Gen Jeffrey Buchanan, who may reduce Manning's sentence or strike off guilty convictions but may not add time or overturn a not guilty finding. Manning will be able to petition Buchanan with letters for clemency.
An appeal will automatically be filed with the Army Criminal Court of Appeals and if Manning and her lawyers wish to pursue further appeals they can go to the Court of Appeals of the Armed Forces, after which they can petition the U.S. Supreme Court.
Manning's court martial trial began in a June at Ft. Meade, MD. Manning was arrested in 2010 on suspicion of leaking the "Collateral Murder" video and other intelligence files to the whistleblower site WikiLeaks. Manning was found guilty on July 30 of 20 charges, including 6 breaches of the Espionage Act.
On March 4 Manning was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by several Pirate Party-affiliated groups including Icelandic politician Birgitta Jonsdottir and her party The Movement, as well as the former Secretary of State in Tunisia for Sport & Youth.
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