(TMU) — Accused WikiLeaks whistleblower and former Army intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning attempted to kill herself in the Alexandria, Virginia, jail where she has been held for a year following her refusal to testify before a federal grand jury.
Dell Cameron reports for Gizmodo:
“Manning’s legal team confirmed the incident in an statement to Gizmodo. She is currently in the hospital and is recovering, they said. Manning was scheduled to appear before a judge on Friday regarding a motion to terminate the sanctions she’s faced for refusing to testify.”
In a statement to Gizmodo, Manning’s lawyers said:
“Ms. Manning is still scheduled to appear on Friday for a previously-calendared hearing, at which Judge Anthony Trenga will rule on a motion to terminate the civil contempt sanctions stemming from her May, 2019 refusal to give testimony before a grand jury investigating the publication of her 2010 disclosures.
In spite of those sanctions — which have so far included over a year of so-called “coercive” incarceration and nearly half a million dollars in threatened fines — she remains unwavering in her refusal to participate in a secret grand jury process that she sees as highly susceptible to abuse.
Ms. Manning has previously indicated that she will not betray her principles, even at risk of grave harm to herself.”
Judge Anthony Trenga who is heading the case ordered cruel and unusual financial sanctions against Manning last year in addition to her confinement for refusing to testify. The fines Manning has so far incurred total to more than a quarter-million dollars.
As both the current and former administrations continue forward with an ongoing nine-year investigation into WikiLeaks since their 2010 leak of almost 100,000 State and Defense Department secret documents dubbed Cablegate pertaining to U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, neither administration has been able to charge a single member of WikiLeaks with a criminal indictment. Nor has any of the documents in the cache of leaks ever been successfully disputed in an international court or court of public opinion.
In that case, only the alleged source of the leak was punished: former U.S. intelligence analyst Chelsea Manning, who spent seven years in prison before former U.S. President Barack Obama commuted 28 years of her 35-year sentence on his way out of office, calling it “very disproportionate relative to what other leakers have received” and that “it makes sense to commute and not pardon her sentence.”
Now, Chelsea Manning is back in prison in solitary confinement for contempt of court in refusing to testify against WikiLeaks and Julian Assange, a testimony which the Department of Justice is hoping will create a perjurious statement.
U.S. DOJ originally gave Chelsea Manning limited immunity over her Grand Jury testimony and confirmed she was not herself a target. Assange’s extradition warrant/FBI affidavit dates from March 2018 and as such the DOJ does not need Manning’s testimony to indict him. In fact, it is improper for them to attempt to use a Grand Jury to prepare for a pending trial once he is extradited. Many feel the DOJ is trying to trick Manning into perjuring herself by giving a false statement over her original truthful trial testimony where she said her actions were not directed by Assange. The purpose of this would be to undermine Manning’s usefulness as a defense witness in Assange’s potential trial.
Earlier this month, TMU reported that Assange was ordered to face his extradition hearing in a glass box. During the hearing, it was revealed by Assange’s lawyers that the U.S. plotted to kidnap and possibly kill him.
Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden, and Julian Assange have all been nominated for the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize by 17 members of a German parliamentary group.