Thursday, 15 August 2013

Bradley Manning: Your Honour

This is a rush transcript of an unsworn statement by Pfc. Bradley Manning on August 14, 2013, during the defense case, during the sentencing phase of U.S. versus Pfc. Bradley E. Manning.

First your Honor. I want to start off with an apology. I am sorry. I am sorry that my actions hurt people. I am sorry that it hurt the United States. At the time of my decisions, as you know, I was dealing with a lot of issues-- issues that are ongoing and they are continuing to affect me.

Although they have caused me considerable difficulty in my life, these issues are not an excuse for my actions. I understood what I was doing and the decisions I made. However, I did not truly appreciate the broader effects of my actions. Those effects are clearer to me now through both self-reflection during my confinement in its various forms and through the merits and sentencing testimony that I have seen here.

I am sorry for the unintended consequences of my actions. When I made these decisions I believed I was gonna help people, not hurt people. The last few years have been a learning experience. I look back at my decisions and wonder, 'How on earth could I, a junior analyst, possibly believe I could change the world for the better over the decisions of those with the proper authority?'

In retrospect I should have worked more aggressively inside the system as we discussed during the Providence Statement and had options and I should have used these options. Unfortunately, I can't go back and change things. I can only go forward. i want to go forward. Before I can do that though, I understand that I must pay a price for my decisions and actions.

Once I pay that price, I hope to one day live in the manner I haven't been able to in the past. I want to be a better person-- to go to college-- to get a degree-- and to have a meaningful relationship with my sister's family and my family.

I want to be a positive influence in their lives, just as my aunt Deborah has been to me. I have flaws and issues that I have to deal with, but I know that I can and will be a better person. I hope you can give me the opportunity to prove-- not through words, but through conduct-- that I am a good person, and that I can return to a productive place in society.

Thank you, your Honor.

Via Bradley Manning Support Network.
The press have gone big on this over a photo of Bradley in drag - presumably a sign of madness for them?
I'm not sure what to make of this statement - only Bradley can speak for himself - but I fear I see a brave young man broken, despairing, hopeless, just as America intended.

Edit: From a later statement by BMSN's Rainsey Reitman; "While the legal strategy of Manning’s attorney at this point—as it would be for any attorney—is to convince the judge to reduce Manning's sentence as much as possible, the public should know: Bradley Manning didn't actually hurt the United States…. The brief discomfort that resulted from the WikiLeaks disclosures was necessary to begin the process of healing and reform. It is a process that we do not yet know will be successful, but which began with Manning's decision to leak vital documents to WikiLeaks. And for that, we owe Manning thanks; no apologies necessary."


  1. This sounds very much like a plea bargain; an acknowledgement of guilt in the hope of earlier parole. Let's hope this is the case.

    The big danger is that he will be brainwashed into being an anti-whistleblower media darling after his eventual release. I hope not.

    1. Yes, quite chilling - I've now added a statement from BMSN as a postscript.

  2. Ha ha! There you go. There is your hero. An other Failed God for you to lie to yourself about.

    Useless idiots.