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Thursday, March 03, 2011

"The Washington Post reports that the army has brought twenty-two new charges — including the Article 104 offence of 'aiding the enemy' that carries a potential death sentence — against Pfc. Bradley E. Manning, a former intelligence analyst accused of leaking hundreds of thousands of classified military and diplomatic documents to the anti-secrecy Web site WikiLeaks. The new charges, filed under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, include wrongfully causing intelligence to be published on the Internet, knowing that it will be accessed by the enemy, that US officials have asserted could put soldiers and civilians at risk. However the prosecution has notified Manning's attorneys that it will not recommend the death penalty and the charge sheet, like the original set of accusations, contains no mention by name of the enemy to which the US military is referring. Manning's supporters reacted to the new charges with dismay. 'I'm shocked that the military opted to charge Pfc. Bradley Manning today with the capital offense of 'aiding the enemy,' says Jeff Paterson, project director of Courage to Resist, which has raised money for Manning's defense. 'It's beyond ironic that leaked US State Department cables have contributed to revolution and revolt in the Middle East, yet an American may be executed, or at best face life in prison, for being the primary whistleblower.'"

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