Thursday, 21 June, 2018

Chelsea Manning Is Free From Prison and Posting On Instagram

Kenny Thornton | 19 May, 2017, 11:25

Manning relished her newfound freedom, posting on social media photos of her lunch - "So, (I'm) already enjoying my first hot, greasy pizza", she declared of the slice of pepperoni - and her feet in sneakers, with the caption, "First steps of freedom!" Thank you so much, I want you to know you've been my hero since high school and I'm just so happy for you! Whatever is ahead of me, is far more important than the past, The Guardian quoted Manning, as saying.

"I'm figuring things out right now - which is exciting, awkward, fun, and all new for me", Manning said in an emailed statement. Manning, 29, captioned her first post on Instagram after creating a profile, which she used to document her return to normalcy.

President Barack Obama commuted the bulk of her remaining sentence-all but four months to be exact-in January, as one of his final acts in office.

The Army says Manning will be on "excess leave", meaning she is considered to be off-duty, while her court-martial conviction is under appellate review.

An Army spokeswoman says Manning remains subject to the military's criminal code until her discharge from the Army. "She wouldn't be charged again for the same offenses, but if she committed a new crime, the military would still have jurisdiction over her".

Manning was convicted under the Espionage Act, a World War I era law that was meant to stop people from supporting enemies of the US during wartime.

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She used her military access to leak over 750,000 documents to WikiLeaks, defending her action as an attempt to start a conversation about what she viewed as compromising USA tactics and intervention. It was reported that one of the CDs she was disguised as a music disc labeled "Lady Gaga". She said her plans include moving to Maryland, and growing out her hair, which was kept shorn in prison.

"She's ready to finally be able to live as the woman that she is", Nancy Hollander, Manning's attorney, told the BBC. I am a female.

Manning transitioned in prison from Bradley to Chelsea and tried to commit suicide twice. (Manning was deployed in Iraq in the time). The Associated Press has not confirmed these reports. She was allowed access to gender assignment surgery in 2016 only after a hunger strike, and was widely celebrated by the trans community for her fight for better treatment and recognition of her trans status while in prison.

Manning's commutation received a host of criticism from some in the government - including now-President Trump. Manning claimed to have sent 260,000 State Department cables to WikiLeaks after copying compact discs of data, according to chat logs Lamo submitted to Wired.com.

On Monday Manning tweeted, "Two more days until the freedom of civilian life ^_^ Now hunting for private #healthcare like millions of Americans =P".

One of the files released by Manning was a shocking 2007 video, "Collateral Murder", of a USA helicopter killing 12 civilians, including two Reuters staff, in Iraq, noted Common Dreams in 2015; none of the US military personnel involved in the killings were charged. The military has not agreed to comment on Manning's treatment over the past seven years that she's been imprisoned.

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