Military Judge Orders Obama Administration to Turn over Proof that WikiLeaks Documents Damaged National Security

Wednesday, June 27, 2012
Bradley Manning Photo: Patrick Semansky, AP)
If the Obama administration wants Private Bradley Manning convicted for releasing classified documents to WikiLeaks, federal prosecutors first must disclose proof that the soldier’s action did harm to national security.
This week Col. Denise Lind, the military judge overseeing Manning’s trial ordered the prosecution to turn over “damage assessments” from the Central Intelligence Agency, Federal Bureau of Investigation, State Department and the Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive that assessed the impact of the leaks.
The prosecutors must also itemize which documents they are sharing with the defense and which they are withholding. The order followed complaints by Manning’s defense team that prosecutors were withholding evidence that could help the accused.
Manning’s lawyer, David Coombs, contends that the assessments will show the WikiLeaks disclosures had no major impact on U.S. national security and did not “aid the enemy” as the government alleges.
Manning is accused of turning over to WikiLeaks four sets of information: 1) 251,287 State Department cables; 2) 91,731 reports from the war in Afghanistan; 3) 391,832 reports from the war in Iraq; and 4) footage of an airstrike in Baghdad on July 12, 2007, that killed 11 people, including two Reuters journalists.
-Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky
To Learn More:
Judge Orders Oversight in Bradley Manning Case (by Adam Klasfeld, Courthouse News Service)
Wikileaks Suspect Wins Battle over US Documents (by Dan De Luce, Agence France-Presse)
Is Secrecy at Bradley Manning Court-Martial about Security or Embarrassment? (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)


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