Manning is accused of the largest intelligence leak in US history.Protests in support of US Army Private Bradley Manning were held in at least 40 cities across the globe as a military judge has begun deliberating over the final verdict in his case. The sentencing phase of the former Army intelligence analyst is expected to begin Wednesday after Judge Col Denise Lind rules on the charges against Manning. Initial protests started on July 26 when supporters of Manning in Washington, DC, gathered in front of Maj. General Buchanan’s office. According to the Free Bradley Manning Campaign, Buchanan is the new convening authority in Manning’s trial and has the power to reduce any possible sentence given to him should he be found guilty. Protesters held banners which read, “Buchanan, the choice is yours” and “truth not treason.” On July 27, which was dubbed “International Day of Action”, major protests were also held in a number of cities across the globe including London, Brussels, Perth, Australia, and several cities in Germany. Manning is accused of the largest intelligence leak in US history. He is charged with leaking hundreds of thousands of sensitive documents to WikiLeaks, including US State Department diplomatic cables, as well as war logs from Iraq and Afghanistan and detainee files from the notorious Guantanamo Bay prison. Manning faces life in prison for charges including aiding the enemy and espionage. He has denied the most serious charge against him, that he knowingly aided the enemy. Manning already faces up to 20 years in prison after he pleaded guilty during his pretrial testimony in February to some of the lesser charges he faced.
Among the documents that the Nobel Peace Prize nominee leaked was a video that shows US troops shooting and killing unarmed civilians and two journalists from an Apache helicopter in Iraq in 2007.An audio recording in the “Collateral Murder” video shows US soldiers repeatedly ask for and are granted permission to fire. The soldiers are also heard joking about their victims as they are opening fire on them from the helicopter. The US military concluded that the US soldiers in question acted appropriately, saying they mistook the camera equipment of the journalists for weapons. ISH/ISH