Kansas, USA. One of America’s greatest heros to many and traitor to just as many is out of prison and speaking out. Bradley or now-Chelsea Manning is a free transgender person telling her tale of fighting America’s spy state and the need for transparency in information available to American citizens.
Ms. Chelsea Manning has been called a hero by some, a traitor by others, but when asked how she sees herself, she said, “I’m just me. It’s as simple as that,” Manning told an American reporter.
In referring to the military documents she was reviewing and what compelled her to risk her career and break the law by leaking them, Manning said, “We’re getting all this information from all these different sources and it’s just death, destruction, mayhem.”
Now free from confinement,Manning serves as a transgender U.S. Army soldier. She was in prison for seven years at the US military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, after being convicted by a military tribunal under the Espionage and Computer Fraud and Abuse Acts.
Ms.Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for releasing over 700,000 documents to WikiLeaks, of which only small amount of those documents ultimately lead to her conviction.
When asked if she felt she owed the American public an apology, Manning said she has accepted responsibility for her actions. “Anything I’ve done, it’s me. There’s no one else,” she said. “No one told me to do this. Nobody directed me to do this. This is me. It’s on me.” Ms. Manning stated.
The information she disclosed included low level battlefield reports from Iraq and Afghanistan, evidence of civilian deaths in Iraq and Afghanistan, Guantanamo prison camp detainee profiles and American diplomatic correspondence.