In a surprise move, a military judge has reduced the potential sentence of WikiLeaker Pfc. Bradley Manning. In a pretrial hearing at Ft. Meade, Maryland, Col. Denise Lind ruled that Manning suffered illegal pretrial punishment in the nine months he spent in a Marine Corps brig. During the time that Manning spent in the brig, he was held in rough conditions that included being held in a 6x8 foot cell for at least 23 hours a day, being forbidden to lean against the wall when awake, or being able to lie in his bed when not sleeping.
Manning is the Army private who leaked more than 250,000 diplomatic cables and 500,000 Army reports from Iran and Afghanistan to WikiLeaks. Once the trial begins in March, Manning will face 22 charges including aiding the enemy. “Aiding the Enemy” can be punishable by life in prison.
[Image: U.S. Army]