Chelsea Manning, a former Army intelligence analyst who was charged with leaking the largest trove of government secrets in U.S. history, spoke out for the first time this week after spending seven years in prison.

“I accept the responsibility,” Manning said. “No one told me to do this. No one directed me to do this. This is me, it’s on me.”

Manning said she was inspired to turn over the collection of over 700,000 classified documents to WikiLeaks, after watching American soldiers commit atrocities against innocent civilians in the Middle East.

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“All of this information—it’s just death, destruction, mayhem, and eventually you just stop—I stopped seeing just statistics and information,” Manning said. “I started seeing people. Counterinsurgents and warfare is not a simple thing. It’s not as simple as ‘good guys vs. bad guys.’ It was a mess.”


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As a result, Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison—the longest sentence given to any whistleblower in U.S. history. President Obama waited until the end of his presidency to commute the remainder of Manning’s sentence.

One of the videos included in the trove, which Manning said inspired her to turn to WikiLeaks, showed American solders carrying out an aerial attack on unarmed civilians in Baghdad in 2007.

Amnesty International Americas Director Erika Guevara-Rosas noted that while Manning was originally given an extremely long sentence, none of the solders exposed in any of the videos faced justice.

“Instead of punishing the messenger, the U.S. government can send a strong signal to the world that it is serious about investigating the human rights violations exposed by the leaks and bringing all those suspected of criminal responsible to justice in fair trials,” Guevara-Rosas said.

READ MORE:  'The Butcher Of Libya': Assange Exposes Clinton War Crimes, Asks Sweden to Set Him Free

As The Free Thought Project has reported, while Manning is out of prison now, she is still an active duty soldier in the U.S. Army, and has been “placed on voluntary excess leave, rather than discharged—and, as such, could be swiftly and relentlessly punished for the slightest violation, despite technically being considered free.”

 

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Rachel Blevins is a Texas-based journalist who aspires to break the left/right paradigm in media and politics by pursuing truth and questioning existing narratives. Follow Rachel on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
  • PRINCE PURPLE RAIN DELUXE O(->

    U.S. troops are duped and used as cannon fodder, they “Serve” no American citizen.

    • Sumner Ferris

      and conditioned since childhood to at some point be what mirrors ancient societies blood sacrifice for a good harvest. In this case Corporate wealth and Profit. Even the Christian bible warns of the powers of darkness that will have the appearance of “the angel of Light”

      • PRINCE PURPLE RAIN DELUXE O(->

        They have been brainwashed and indoctrinated. Lucifer is working overtime….

    • Sumner Ferris

      Chelsea saw real human victims. The armed forces teaches one to see enemies and targets. As such what is being killed has no value. Further it has been recently proposed that although “leaders” devise evil deeds. They do not and cannot carry them out without followers/believers. As it is the followers/believers that carry out these acts. We try “leaders” as war criminals,while excusing the followers. Strangely in the war trials after WWII, We expressed the PREMISE that following orders is nt an acceptable excuse. BUT we ONLY applied it to NAZI. We do not apply it to ourselves. One cannot argue that one has a moral obligation to stand against these immoral acts and then punish ANYONE who does so. To do this is counter to your position of morality.

      • PRINCE PURPLE RAIN DELUXE O(->

        Very true, U.S. military are as bad or worse than Nazis and do not even know it.