Witness | US v Pfc. Manning, Col. David M. Miller, Commander, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division

UPDATE POST COURT-MARTIAL

United States v. Pfc.Manning was conducted in de facto secrecy. The public was not granted contemporaneous access to court filings or rulings during her trial. In addition to reporting on her trial, I transcribed the proceedings, reconstructed the censored appellate list, and un-redacted any publicly available documentation, in order to foster public comprehension of her unprecedented trial.

As a result of a lawsuit against the military judge and the Military District of Washington brought by the Center for Constitutional Rights, as well as my own FOIA requests and research, an official court record for US v. Pfc. Manning was released seven months after her trial. That record is not complete.

The official trial docket is published HERE and the entire collection of documents is text searchable at usvmanning.org.

*During the pretrial proceedings, court-martial and sentencing of Pfc. Manning, Chelsea requested to be identified as Bradley and addressed using the male pronoun. In a letter embargoed for August 22, 2013 Chelsea proclaimed that she is female and wished to be addressed from that moment forward as Chelsea E. Manning.

General Description

Col. David Miller

Col. David Miller

Col. David M. Miller was the Commander of the Second Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division and the most senior officer in Pfc. Bradley Manning's chain of command in the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division.

Miller provided a sworn statement for the Secretary of the Army's 15-6 investigation into the alleged unauthorized disclosures.

According to the defense's account of Col. David M. Miller's sworn statement, "the officer in charge of PFC Manning" in the S2 Section of the 2nd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division, Maj. Cliff Clausen, the Brigade S2, "was not up to the standard of performance that [Col. David M. Miller] expected out of someone in that position."

According to the defense's account of Col. David M. Miller's sworn statement, Miller "decided it was best to remove" Maj. Cliff Clausen "from his position as the [Brigade] S2 and place" Captain Steven Lim into that job.

According to the sworn testimony of Captain Steven Lim at the Article 32 Pretrial Hearing, in the third or fourth week of January 2010, Captain Lim, then the Assistant Brigade S2, was promoted to Brigade S2, replacing Maj. Cliff Clausen.

Captain Lim testified that Maj. Cliff Clausen "could not communicate information to the commander [Col. David M. Miller] in the way the commander needed." Following a transition period, on 6 February 2010 the command change in the S2 Section of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division was official. Captain Steven Lim testified that the change in command was atypical, because command rarely changes during deployment.

According to the defense's account of Col. David M. Miller's sworn statement, Captain Matthew W. Freeburg also relieved [A YET UNIDENTIFIED CAPTAIN] as the company commander for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division, at the latter end of the 2BCT, 10 MTN Div. deployment - around April or May 2010 - a month or so before Pfc. Manning was arrested at FOB Hammer, Iraq.

According to the defense's account of the sworn statement of Col. David M. Miller, the former [YET UNIDENTIFIED CAPTAIN] and company commander of HHC/2BCT, 10 MTN Div. was relieved by Captain Matthew W. Freeburg, because of "property accountability and due to the fact he was not making good decisions."

In his sworn statement in the Secretary of the Army's 15-6 investigation into alleged unauthorized disclosure, Miller said Master Sergeant Paul David Adkins (now Sergeant First Class due to administrative action), "the NCOIC [Non Commissioned Officer in Charge] in the S2 Section, and Pfc. Manning's commanding officer in the T-SCIF was 'marginal, but not bad enough to either relieve or replace.'"

According to the defense's account of Col. David M. Miller's sworn statement in the Secretary of the Army's 15-6 investigation into alleged unauthorized disclosure, Col. David Miller said that Master Sergeant Paul David Adkins (now Sergeant First Class due to administrative action) "failed to inform the chain of command of Pfc. Manning emotional and mental condition and this failure resulted in the command not submitting a DEROG in a timely manner."

The Government objected to the defense request for the testimony of Col. David M. Miller, Commander of the Second Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division at the December 2011 Article 32 Pretrial Hearing, stating his testimony was "not relevant to the Article 32 investigation and will only serve to distract from the relevant issues."

While there is no official public record of Almanza's denial of this witness' testimony, Col. David M. Miller, Commander of the Second Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division did not appear during any open session of the Article 32 Pretrial Hearing. The public record shows that at least fourteen witnesses were granted to defense for the Article 32 Pretrial Hearing. In Lt. Col. Almanza's ruling on the Defense Request for Article 32 Witnesses, 12 witnesses were granted to the defense, 10 of whom were also requested by the Government. Defense said in open Court on December 16, 2011, that Lt. Col. Almanza granted two additional witnesses to defense that morning.

No. 13 on the December 2, 2011 Defense Request for Article 32 Witnesses

XXXXXXXXXX [Col. David M. Miller, Commander of the 10th Mountain Division's Second Brigade] He will testify that the brigade did not want to take the wrong personnel forward, nor did the brigade want to leave a large rear D [detachment] behind for a small staff to manage and lead. He expected the leaders in the Brigade to identify, those soldiers who should not deploy. He will testify that his S-2, the officer in charge of PFC Manning, XXXXXXXXXX, [ Maj. Cliff Clausen] was not up to the standard of performance that he expected out of someone in that position. Based upon his discussions with then XXXXXXXXXX [WHO IS THIS?] and XXXXXXXXXX [ WHO IS THIS?], XXXXXXXXXX [ Col. David M. Miller, Commander of the 10th Mountain Division's Second Brigade] decided it was best to remove XXXXXXXXXX [ Maj. Cliff Clausen] from his position as the S2 and place XXXXXXXXXX [Captain Steven Lim] into that job. He will testify that from his perspective, the issues surrounding PFC Manning should have been something that the S2 personnel would have been more involved in than the company. However, there were several issues that may have impacted the response to PFC Manning's issues. First, during that time period [AROUND MAY OR APRIL 2010] the former company commander, XXXXXXXXXX [A YET UNIDENTIFIED CAPTAIN] was relieved over property accountability and due to the fact he was not making good decisions. Second, XXXXXXXXXX [ Master Sergeant Paul David Adkins (now Sergeant First Class due to administrative action)], the NCOIC [Non Commissioned Officer in Charge] in the S2 Section, was "marginal, but not bad enough to either relieve or replace. He will testify that then XXXXXXXXXX [ WHAT IS THIS?] was technically competent but that he lacked leader skills expected of a XXXXXXXXXX [ WHAT IS THIS?]. He will also testify that commanders (in conjunction with their unit security manager) are allotted 30 days to submit an initial DA 5248-R following the discovery of credible derogatory information on a Soldier. After the initial DEROG is submitted and processed by SID/CCF [Security Investigations Division/ Central Clearance Facility], the unit has 90 days to submit a follow-up 5248-R if there is a pending investigation or adverse action taken (e.g., summary court-martial). Once the investigation/proceedings are completed and the Soldier has been cleared/charged of offense, the unit must submit a final DEROG. In this case, he will testify that then XXXXXXXXXX [Master Sergeant Paul David Adkins (now Sergeant First Class due to administrative action)] failed to keep the chain of command informed of PFC Manning emotional and mental condition. He will testify that this failure resulted in the command not submitting a DEROG in a timely manner.

Other Resources

Alexa O'Brien Alexa O'Brien researches and writes about national security. Her work has been published in VICE News, The Cairo Review of Global Affairs, Guardian UK, Salon, The Daily Beast, and featured on the BBC, PBS Frontline, On The Media, Democracy Now!, and Public Radio International. In 2013, she was shortlisted for the Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism in the UK and listed in The Verge 50..