Witness | US v Pfc. Manning, Unidentified Key Leader of the 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.

Witness No. 15, an unidentified key leader of the Second Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, provided a sworn statement for the Secretary of the Army's 15-6 investigation into the alleged unauthorized disclosures. Defense's account of Witness No. 15's sworn statement is found in the December 2, 2011 Defense Request for Article 32 Witnesses below.

I suspect that Witness No. 15 is either the Deputy Commander, Lt. Col. Michael Davey or more likely Command Sergeant Major Joe Montour. This key leader of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division did not have much interaction with the S2 shop, and provided guidance on soldier deployment. There is not enough information, however, to rule on anyone individual conclusively.

The Government objected to the defense request for the unidentified Witness No. 15, a key leader of the Second Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, at the December 2011 Article 32 Pretrial Hearing, stating Witness No. 15's 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, he 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. 15 on the December 2, 2011 Defense Request for Article 32 Witnesses

john-doe XXXXXXXXXX [WHO IS THIS?] He will testify that he had very little interaction with the S2 shop. He will also testify about the guidance he gave regarding whether soldiers would deploy. He will testify that he was not made aware of any effort to keep PFC Manning from deploying. He will testify that his understanding was that PFC Manning's issues came about after deploying. He was not aware that XXXXXXXXXX [Master Sergeant Adkins (now Sergeant First Class due to an administrative action)] recommended to PFC Manning that he self-refer to Mental Health or that PFC Manning even went to Mental Health prior to the deployment. He will also testify that he was not adequately informed of PFC Manning's mental health issues by XXXXXXXXXX [ WHO IS THIS? ] or XXXXXXXXXX [ WHO IS THIS?]. XXXXXXXXXX [ WHO/WHAT IS THIS?].

Other Resources

Alexa O'Brien Alexa O'Brien researches and writes about national security and law enforcement. Her work has been published in The New York Times, VICE News, The Cairo Review of Global Affairs, Guardian (UK), The Daily Beast, NY Daily News, and featured on the BBC, PBS, NPR, Democracy Now!, and Public Radio International. She was shortlisted for the 2013 Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism in the United Kingdom and listed in The Verge 50. In 2016, she worked at The Constitution Project in Washington, D.C. as a staff researcher and writer on an independent commission studying Oklahoma's death penalty. She also provided research support to scholars of the first cost study conducted on that state's capital punishment system.