Bradley Manning To Serve Prison Sentence as Female, Chelsea Manning

This is definitely going to be a challenge for the U.S Army! He made his statement on NBC’s TODAY:

Bradley Manning, the Army private sentenced to military prison for leaking classified documents, revealed he intends to live out the remainder of his life as a woman.

“I am Chelsea Manning. I am female,” the Army private wrote in a statement read on TODAY Thursday. “Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible. I hope that you will support me in this transition.”

Manning, 25, was sentenced to 35 years in prison on Wednesday after having been found guilty of 20 charges ranging from espionage to theft for leaking more than 700,000 documents to the WikiLeaks website while working in Iraq in 2010.

“I also request that, starting today, you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun (except in official mail to the confinement facility),” he continued in the statement. “I look forward to receiving letters from supporters and having the opportunity to write back.”…

[continues at TODAY]

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  • Kevin Leonard

    #FreeChelseaManning!

  • Anarchy Pony

    Now that’s an unexpected twist.

    • Hadrian999

      not really his gender issues have been common knowledge for a while, I can’t believe his superiors didn’t see that he was coming unhinged during his deployment and remove him from duty before he leaked anything.

      • Kevin Leonard

        Are you actually suggesting that coming to terms with your gender identity is “coming unhinged” and is deserving of removal from duty?

        • Hadrian999

          there were other problems he was having, there are many things than can cause you to be removed from duty or lose a security clearance that don’t mean you did anything wrong, but put a strain on your state of mind or make you more susceptible to being turned

          • Kevin Leonard

            Context is everything. This IS a discussion on his gender identity and the (ir)relevance of it.

            But I see your point. Reading security briefs everyday that prove your superior officers and fellow soldiers are violating the Geneva Convention with a shrug and a “meh” would make me come unhinged, too.

            Something had to break, and, oh, hey look! It did!

        • Dingbert

          At least as recently as the ’80s, they asked you and your references about your sexuality when doing security clearance investigations. The logic was that someone “in the closet” or whatever could be blackmailed for classified information. Being in debt isn’t deserving of removal from duty, either, but it can still risk your clearance, as it supposedly makes you easier to buy off.

          • Kevin Leonard

            I believe the argument that was that Manning was coming unhinged. As such, your statement is irrelevant to this discourse.

            Further, it is quite clear that Manning has no concerns over being exposed.

            I do not understand why people are making his sexual orientation and gender identity an issue. He was acting In full accordance with the Geneva Convention by revealing the war crimes he discovered.

          • Dingbert

            Just wanted to point out the perspective of a security investigator, who would see the link between gender issues and cause for removal. The debt statement was intended to point out their view is utilitarian, not socially normative.
            I agree with your defense of Manning, but these were issues that influenced his actions. The Army did in fact decide to suspend his clearance and demote him for both gender identity issues and mental health, which appear to be closely related in this case (if only because of the nature of military life):

            http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/magazine/who-is-wikileaks-suspect-bradley-manning/2011/04/16/AFMwBmrF_print.html

            The fact that he had no concerns over being exposed–and perhaps greatly desired it–shows one of many ways the clearance process is flawed.

      • Anarchy Pony

        Really? This is the first I’ve heard of his gender identity issues.

        • Hadrian999

          I remember reading a news article mentioning the gender issues and various disciplinary problems he was having during his deployment prior to the trial.

          • Anarchy Pony

            I remember stuff about alleged disciplinary problems, but nothing about gender issues.

          • lifobryan

            Whenever ‘The Advocate’ mentioned the Manning story, they always referred to him as “gay or possibly transgendered,” so the info was out there somewhere. I have to admit, I never really read those parts of the stories. His/her wiki-leaks activities were always way more interesting to me – and way more significant & important than personal identity issues.

  • Kraskin

    disinformation to make him seem non legit, chances are he was forced to make this statement..

  • Ted Heistman

    why? Because she can, that’s fucking why! I give Kudos to Manning for this. I think it shows an indomitable spirit and bodily/spiritual sovereignty.

  • Liam_McGonagle

    ‘Chelsea’ makes sense. A bit trendy without being aggressive.

    You know if any real criminals ended up in the big house for their crimes, they’d be going for trashy monikers like ‘Brittany Cheney’ or ‘Brandi Rumsfeld’.

    • Anarchy Pony

      Cheney’s already secure in his identity as an undead american.

      • lifobryan

        You’re being insensitive to Mr. Cheney. Please use the full, inclusive acronym. Mr. Cheney is a “Cloven-Hooved Undead Plutocrat and Clinically Amoral Bloodsucking Republican American.” Or C.H.U.P.A.C.A.B.R.A.

    • Hadrian999

      at least he didn’t pick a lame cop out girl name like brenda

  • Andrew

    Why am I wondering what the government’s been doing to him in his cell?

    • Ted Heistman

      He was transgendered before he got arrested, apparently.

      • Andrew

        Then at least one of my suspicions is due to some bias inherent in myself.

    • Calypso_1

      The more I consider it I find myself thinking along the same lines. There is no particular reason to believe the back story could not be manufactured. No one knew who he was before these events. Creating a legend complete with verifiable ‘past’ events & associates is certainly within the scope of practice for gov’t agencies. Given the well developed program of mil detainment that was revealed by abu ghraib, it should be considered that such methodologies extend to even more extreme forms.

  • BuzzCoastin

    I don’t know who her PR dudes are
    but they don’t know jackshit about manipulating public opinion
    or they do

  • DeepCough

    At first, I thought this was government disinformation.

  • Aram Jahn

    This all reminds me of the moment I realized Billy Graham was a bulldyke in drag.

  • atlanticus

    She’s a rare case, too; judging by the pic, prettier as a girl than as a dude.

  • InfvoCuernos

    Like a modern day Quan yin(sp?). Looks like she’s going to be very popular at the ball.

  • http://skadhiblog.wordpress.com/ skadhithjassisdottir

    Funny thing is Manning looks so different in both photos. I don’t think its the same person.

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