Thursday, January 19, 2017

ON CHELSEA MANNING

POTUS has the right to issue pardons and commute sentences.   It is expected that the right is used sparingly and for good cause.     Three days out from leaving office President has commuted back to seven years the 35 year sentence imposed on Chelsea Manning.    'She' will now be freed in less than four months.

On 30 July 2013 Manning was convicted by Courts Martial on 17 out of 22 charges including five charges of espionage and theft.     Evidence was adduced that the information passed by Manning to Wikileaks caused considerable damage to the US intelligence community and contributed to the unmasking of vital intelligence assets.

Sorry President Obama ... you don't commute the sentences of traitors ... especially traitors in uniform no matter how mixed up they are.


16 comments:

Noel said...

A traitor is charged with treason...as in US Code 2381.

Charges again Manning were

UCMJ 104 (Aiding the enemy): 1 count
UCMJ 92 (Failure to obey a lawful order or regulation): 9 counts. Mostly related to computers[2][3]
Army Regulation 25-2, para. 4-5(a)(3): Modifying or installing unauthorized software to a system, using it for 'unintended' purposes
Army Regulation 25-2, para. 4-5(a)(4): Circumventing security mechanisms
Army Regulation 25-2, para. 4-6(k): Forbids transferring classified or sensitive information to non-secure systems
Army Regulation 380-5: Improper storage of classified information
UCMJ 134 (General article): 24 counts. These counts incorporate statutes from the United States Code:
18 U.S.C. § 641: Embezzlement and Theft of Public Money, Property or Records. The government said the records that Manning transferred were 'things of value'.
18 U.S.C. § 793(e): This is part of the Espionage Act. The law forbids 'unauthorized persons' from taking 'national defense' information and either 'retaining' it or delivering it to 'persons not entitled to receive it'.[4][5]
18 U.S.C. § 1030(a) 1 and 2: These are from the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986. Section 1030(a)(1) is sometimes called the 'Computer Espionage' law as it borrows from the Espionage Act.[6]

Noel said...


"Sorry President Obama ... you don't commute the sentences of traitors"

" Pardons for military offenses must be sent directly to the secretary of the military department that had original jurisdiction in the individual’s case. For example, if a soldier in the Army was court-martialed for a particular offense, and wanted a presidential pardon, that soldier would have to submit his or her application to the Secretary of the Army.
A presidential pardon will not change the character of the military discharge. So, for example, if a member of the Navy receives a dishonorable discharge, a presidential pardon of that Navy member will not eliminate the dishonorable discharge.

The Veteran said...

Noel ... Manning was not pardoned. President commuted 'her' sentence back to 7 years.
Her dishonorable discharge stands.

Anonymous said...


" First, the presiding judge in Manning’s case, Col. Denise Lind, found her not guilty of “aiding the enemy”—the Army prosecutors’ most serious charge, which could have carried the death penalty. Second, the most highly classified documents in Manning’s cache were marked “secret”—the second-lowest label in the security world—and many were deemed “unclassified but sensitive.” These were not crown jewels by any stretch.

Finally, a damage report conducted by military intelligence officials concluded that Manning’s leaks caused no great harm to U.S. national security, according to officers who read the report.
Manning’s most headline-grabbing leak—and the one that most qualified as an act of whistle-blowing—was a suppressed video of a U.S. helicopter attack in Baghdad that killed two Reuters photographers, whose cameras were mistaken by the pilots for firearms, and several Iraqi civilians in a van who had stopped to help them. (The incident occurred near an actual insurgent attack on American soldiers.) Most of the other documents were diplomatic memos that revealed nothing immoral or criminal but whose release caused embarrassment and, in a few cases, brief setbacks to relations with American allies.
Had Manning been a civilian, she probably would have been sentenced to a few years in jail."

The Veteran said...

Anon 1.52 ... you're wrong about classifications. The range is unclassified, restricted, confidential, secret and top secret with some additional add-ons for everything confidential and above. Then there are diplomatic sensitive documents.

You may care to reference your ascertain that Manning's leaks caused no great harm to US national security.

Actually I find it kinda bizarre funny that some of those who support Manning's leaking of documents to WikiLeaks as a public service in the search for truth got really uptight when that same organisation published 20,000 e-mails from the Democratic National Committee, including plans to undermine the campaign of Bernie Sanders, which led to the resignation of the DNC Chair and others. I mean no-one forced Debbie Wasserman Schultz to write those e-mails.

Manning did what she did. Someone will correct me if I am wrong but my understanding is that this is the first time a President has pardoned/commuted the sentence of anyone convicted of espionage.

David said...

And right on cue here I come

Woodrow Wilson, Dem

Frederick Krafft – convicted for alleged violation of the Espionage Act. Only person convicted under this law to receive a full executive pardon.

Warren Harding, Rep

Eugene V. Debs – convicted of sedition under the Espionage Act of 1917; sentence commuted
Kate Richards O'Hare – convicted of sedition under the Espionage Act of 1917; sentence commuted

Bill Clinton, Dem

Samuel Loring Morison – espionage and theft of government property;

pdm said...

David - did any of them do it 2 or 3 days before leaving office?

That is disgracefully unethical for mine!

The Veteran said...

pdm ... Morison was pardoned by Clinton on the last day of his Presidency.

David ... neither Krafft (politician), Debs (politician), O'Hare (politician) or Morison (intelligence analyst) were serving military ... if that makes a difference.

David said...

pdm, POTUS is POTUS from his first day to his last, his powers do not change according to time in office. Obama may well have been influenced by Assange's promise to turn himself in if Manning was pardoned.

Veteran you wrote ...my understanding is that this is the first time a President has pardoned/commuted the sentence of anyone convicted of espionage. The words "serving military" are absent from that.

I just wish Obama had resigned on Monday, then Biden would have been 45th POTUS, leaving the Orange Ape with millions of dollars of Trump 45 merchandise unsaleable. :-) That would have been the best parting gift ever.

The Veteran said...

David ... IMHO Morison's leak to Janes comes nowhere near that of Manning's. You're right, I did not refer to 'serving military' in my comment. My mistake. The point stands. Obama was 'soft' on Manning just as he was soft on standing up to Russia during his presidency,

Anonymous said...

Normally I would agree but this case is far from normal. Regardless whether or not the sentence, like most US sentences, was excessive I believe he commuted a death sentence down to seven years.

Lord Egbut

Psycho Milt said...

Actually I find it kinda bizarre funny that some of those who support Manning's leaking of documents to WikiLeaks as a public service in the search for truth got really uptight when that same organisation published 20,000 e-mails from the Democratic National Committee, including plans to undermine the campaign of Bernie Sanders, which led to the resignation of the DNC Chair and others.

The "got really uptight" part was about a foreign power mounting a successful cyber-attack on the USA and attempting to influence its elections, which isn't really comparable to the Manning case. What's bizarre is that the orange-painted sexual assault enthusiast the Republican Party chose to represent it doesn't find that of any interest.

Noel said...

Commuted 35 to 7. Would have been death if he had found guilty in the military equivalent of treason.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...

Milt

"The "got really uptight" part was about a foreign power mounting a successful cyber-attack on the USA and attempting to influence its elections,"

Like Obama did in Israel?


Noel said...

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-38674286

Anonymous said...

Noel....it was a death sentence. Manning would have been dead in five years. Transgender people in military prisons do not have a normal prison life and spend an enormous amount of time either alone or in solitary.

Lord Egbut