Report from Bradley Manning's arraignment.

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Bradley Manning Support Network

Reporting from Pfc. Bradley Manning's Arraignment, Global Exchange Human Rights Award.

Yesterday, the prosecution unexpectedly requested another delay to prepare for Bradley's court martial, effectively moving the trial to August. The government is openly making a mockery of Bradley's right to a speedy trial. In fact, Bradley's attorneys first protested these endless delays back in January 2011! However, with your support, we can make the government regret their delays by using these additional months to organize.

We've already started planning for "Free Bradley Manning!" contingents at the G8 meeting in Chicago in May and gay pride events nationwide in June--in addition to the 100+ solidarity events that will coincide with the beginning of the trial. We'll also be holding events outside of Obama campaign offices to challenge the president on his handling of Bradley's case so far. As the court martial is likely to take at least four weeks, we'll also want to be out in force at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Aug 27-30, and at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, Sept 3-6.

Since June 2010, we've raised about $500,000 for Bradley's defense--and we've spent $500,000. Now we know we'll need to raise an additional $150,000 through the end of the court martial to give Bradley every fighting chance both inside and outside the courtroom. Thank you for whatever amount you are able to contribute today!

Report from Bradley Manning's Arraignment.

Yesterday’s arraignment for Bradley Manning lasted a little under an hour, as expected. Replacing the Investigating Officer from the Article 32 hearing is military judge Denise Lind. After members of the prosecution and defense declared their certifications and qualifications, the judge addressed Pfc. Manning directly, asking if he understood that a military counsel is available to him at no cost, or a civilian counsel is available at no cost to the government. “Yes, your honor,” Manning replied. She then asked who he wished to represent him, and he replied that he wanted to keep Mr. Coombs and the rest of the defense team with him.

Then the prosecution and defense were allowed to question the judge. The prosecution declined, but Coombs stood for the defense. He asked her what prior knowledge she had of Manning’s case. She responded, “I knew there was a case, that it involved classified information. I knew the case involved someone named Pfc. Manning.”

Coombs asked if the judge had made any impressions with her knowledge of the case, and she replied that she’d made none. She said she’d had no discussions of the case that she could recall. When asked, she said “I have formed no opinion” about Pfc. Manning or the leaked information.

Then Coombs asked about her background, to determine her experience with national security and classified documents. The judge said she had dealt with classified information on at least two cases as a military judge, and that she was “sure” there had been others where classified information was involved. Asked if she’d received training in classified information, she said there were “short classification classes” as part of her training, but she didn’t remember if she’d attended a full week of those classes.

Coombs pressed her to remember. Between 2007 and 2009, he asked, had she taken any short courses on classified information? She replied that between ’07 and ’08 she hadn’t taken any, but that she had between ’08 and ’09. Coombs, ready for the answer, asked, “Do you recall me teaching?” The judge replied that yes, she had thought he looked familiar, and that she had taken his class. Asked if she’d had any impression of Coombs from that class, the judge replied she had not.

Read the entire article.

Vote for Bradley Manning to win the Human Rights Award.

Vote for accused WikiLeaks whistle-blower PFC Manning to win this year's People's Choice award!

Global Exchange is an advocacy non-governmental organization based in San Francisco. The group's mission is to promote human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice around the world. One of the group's founders, Medea Benjamin, sits on the Bradley Manning Support Network's Advisory Board, and this year Bradley Manning has been nominated for their annual Human Rights Award.

From Global Exchange's website:

The Global Exchange Human Rights Awards strives to recognize the individuals and groups making a lasting difference, including those heroes whose efforts may have previously gone unrecognized. Spanning the globe, these honorees represent a multiplicity of professions, tactics, and aspirations. Though diverse, they are unified by a common drive to preserve and protect human rights.

The Human Rights Award winner will receive $1000 as well as international recognition as a hero for human rights. The number of votes each candidate receives is a crucial consideration in determining their 2012 People's Choice winner.

Vote for PFC Bradley Manning now.


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