Bradley Manning faces the first day of his military court-martial today after being accused of perpetrating the largest leak of classified information in American history.
And the government’s going for the throat.
Officials have insisted on the proceeding with the most serious charges of aiding the enemy and violating the Espionage Act, along with 20 other charges against the U.S. Army private first class. He faces life in prison.
The government alleges that Manning provided the anti-secrecy website Wikileaks with more than 700,000 secret documents and diplomatic cables. In January prosecutors said they would introduce evidence that WikiLeaks materials were found at Osama bin Laden’s safe house.
U.S. Army Photo
Manning has not denied his culpability. In February, he pleaded guilty to 10 of 22 charges.
“I wanted the American public to know that not everyone in Iraq and Afghanistan are targets that needed to be neutralized, but rather people who were struggling to live in the pressure-cooker environment of what we call asymmetric warfare,” Manning said.
Manning is one of six people the Obama administration has prosecuted under the Espionage Act, more than all previous administrations combined.
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