Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

'Ungrateful Traitor' Chelsea Manning Released From Prison Early By Obama

'Ungrateful Traitor' Chelsea Manning Released From Prison Early By Obama

In 2009 and 2010, Manning admitted that she-he at the time-smuggled out several SD disks with reams of classified information, including contents of Significant Actions files, or SigActs, which detail military actions on the ground in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

U.S. Army Pvt. Chelsea Manning, who leaked 700,000 classified documents to WikiLeaks, was released from prison today after seven years of confinement.

Chelsea Manning, formerly known as a male officer called Bradley Manning, was arrested in 2010 after leaking 700,000 military files including a battlefield video and diplomatic cables to WikiLeaks, the largest leak of classified data in US history.

Manning was released from Fort Leavenworth in Kansas around 2 a.m. local time, military sources confirmed. She was allowed access to gender assignment surgery in 2016 only after a hunger strike, and was widely celebrated by the trans community for her fight for better treatment and recognition of her trans status while in prison.

"When I first wrote to Chelsea at the military prison in Kansas, she could not be filmed, nor could I communicate with her in any way other than through letters", Hawkins said in a statement. "Chelsea Manning's treachery put American lives at riskand exposed some of our nation's most sensitive secrets", Ryan responded to the news of Manning's sentence commutation.

Critics of Manning's decision said that she had released information identifying military informants, potentially putting them at risk.

"After another anxious four months of waiting, the day has finally arrived", Manning said in a statement Wednesday carried by the ACLU, which contributed to her defense team.

Manning's identity has been the cause of much of the media coverage of her, since her gender at times seemed to pose a threat to her overall wellbeing.

She had passed 700,000 pages of revelatory material about U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan to WikiLeaks, which included videos of the Baghdad airstrike on 12 July 2007 and the 2009 Granai airstrike in Afghanistan.

She was not able to flee overseas like Edward Snowden, who in 2013 released documents showing that the NSA was sweeping up U.S. citizens' communications metadata. Manning, in addition to the normal costs of civilian life, is facing the cost of continuing her transition from male to female, begun while she was under confinement.

"Hugs for Chelsea", a digital album available for a $25 donation, features tracks by artists known for their left-wing activism including Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello and Sonic Youth co-founder Thurston Moore.

Manning has also surreptitiously become an icon for transgender activists.

The former USA soldier has been freed from facing a 35-year-long sentence.

On Jan. 17, 2017, Hollander was in her office when she got a call from Obama's counsel at the White House: "He asked if I was Chelsea Manning's lawyer and I said yes".

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