Witness | US v Pfc. Manning, Major Cliff Clausen, Brigade S2, 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

Major Cliff Clausen was the Brigade S2 for 2nd Brigade Combat Team (2 BCT), 10th Mountain Division (10 MTN Div.) until January 2010, and provided a sworn statement for the Secretary of the Army's 15-6 investigationinto the alleged unauthorized disclosures.

Major Cliff Clausen was Pfc. Bradley Manning's most senior commanding officer in the Briagde S2 Section until January 2010.

According to the defense's account of the Commander of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, 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, Col. David M. 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 the sworn statement of Major Cliff Clausen, Major Clausen dis not recall talking to the former YET UNIDENTIFIED CAPTAIN ] and company commander of HHC/2BCT, 10 MTN Division about PFC Manning's behavioral health issues. According to the defense's account of the sworn statement of Col. David M. Miller, that former [YET UNIDENTIFIED CAPTAIN] and company commander of HHC/2BCT, 10 MTN Div. was relieved by Captain Matthew W. Freeburg in April or May of 2010, because of " property accountability and due to the fact he was not making good decisions."

The Government objected to the defense request for the testimony of Major Cliff Clausen, Brigade S2, 2nd 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, Major Cliff Clausen, Brigade S2, 2nd 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.


*Video taken weeks before MAJ Clausen's transfer and replacement.

No. 16 on the December 2, 2011 Defense Request for Article 32 Witnesses

XXXXXXXXXX [Maj. Cliff Clausen, Brigade S2] He was the 2/10 BCT S-2 until being replaced by XXXXXXXXXX [Captain Steven Lim, then Assistant S2 and Military Intelligence Company Commander]. He will testify that XXXXXXXXXX [WHO IS THIS?] did tell him about an outburst by PFC Manning before the deployment, but that he does not remember XXXXXXXXXX [WHO IS THIS?] having a conversation with him about leaving PFC Manning on rear detachment. He will also testify, that he did not recall talking to the company commander [YET UNIDENTIFIED CAPTAIN] about PFC Manning's behavioral health issues. He will testify that it was his practice to not take many issues outside of the S2 Shop, and that he believed the supervision policy of having every issue go through XXXXXXXXXX [Master Sergeant Adkins (now Sergeant First Class due to an administrative action)] was fine. Finally, he will testify that music CDs were allowed in the T-SCIF.

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..