From Bradley’s attorney David Coombs; June 6-8 courtroom notes
Supporters held a vigil in solidarity with Bradley Manning’s June 6-8th motion hearing. Nathan Fuller reports back from the court room, and PFC Bradley Manning’s attorney, David Coombs, posted a message of gratitude to supporters on his blog. You can support Bradley in several ways: donate to his defense fund, send a solidarity photo, attend his next appearance in Ft. Meade, on June 25.
By David Coombs. June 12, 2012.
Over the past two years, thousands of individuals have either donated to the defense fund or given freely of their time to support PFC Bradley Manning. The support provided has come in many forms:
1) Signing petitions (standwithbrad.org);
2) Standing up to say “I am Bradley Manning” (iam.bradleymanning.org);
3) Writing to military/government authorities;
4) Writing letters to the editors of local and national newspapers;
5) Attending marches, rallies, and other public events to raise awareness about Bradley Manning;
6) Using social media to write about the case and the events of every hearing;
7) Contacting government representatives;
8) Sending messages of support to my law office;
9) Donating to the legal defense fund; or
10) Volunteering with the Bradley Manning Support Network and Courage to Resist.
At every court hearing, I am given the opportunity to witness this support first hand. The attendance by supporters during these hearings as been nothing short of inspiring. Although my client is not permitted to engage those in attendance, he aware of your presence and support.
During our latest hearing on 6 – 8 June, I was particularly struck by the warmth of support by those in attendance. At one point during a break, I had causally mentioned that it was my anniversary. Apparently a supporter had overheard this statement, and took up a collection to give flowers, a balloon, and a thoughtful card to me and my wife. This kind gesture is emblematic of the type of people who are supporting Brad.
I would like to publicly thank all those who have supported my client over the past two years. I also want to pass on the following message from Brad: “I am very grateful for your support and humbled by your ongoing efforts.” Brad also asked me to specifically thank on his behalf the unflinching support of Courage to Resist and the Bradley Manning Support Network.
What happens in this court-martial is of vital importance to all of us. With your continued support, we will ensure that justice is achieved for Brad.
Supporters report from the June 6th vigil:
On the first day of Bradley Manning’s June 6-8th motion hearing supporters stood outside the gates of Fort Meade to hold a vigil in solidarity with Bradley, before moving in to fill the court room. The Bradley Manning Support Network provided supporters with t-shirts that read “Truth” (supporters at previous hearings had been blocked from wearing “Free Bradley” t-shirts which had been deemed too controversial.) Read reports from some of those who attended!
For those living near Washington, DC. consider attending Bradley’s next court appearance – an interim motion hearing scheduled for June 25th!
Daily accounts of the June 6-8th motion hearings:
Thus far the military has failed to provide official public transcripts of the hearings. Thankfully Bradley Manning Support Network writer Nathan L. Fuller was in court each day to provide daily accounts.
Wednesday, June 6: The first day of the hearing focused on the government’s failure to produce evidence the defense has been requesting since the case’s inception. In the morning, the judge ruled in favor of a defense motion, stating that the government must provide the defense access to a Defense Intelligence Agency WikiLeaks damage assessment. The defense also complained of the heavy redacting in the documents they’ve been given access to, showing a huge file with most of the pages entirely blacked out, making context of evidence impossible to understand. Later, the defense provided detailed information about the efforts they’d taken to obtain evidence and the delays and other obstacles they’d faced. We learned that 28 of the 63 requested agencies have turned in damage assessments within the past two months, with most providing one or two pages alleging no damage.
Thursday, June 7: Three State Department officials testified regarding that department’s damage assessment and general response to WikiLeaks’ releases. The third witness refused to give the name of the State Department official who has kept records on the impact of WikiLeaks since 2011. However, we learned of several different possible documents containing evidence of WikiLeaks’ impact on our national security or lack thereof, which the defense formally requested access to but has been asking for as part of its discovery request for two years.
Friday, June 8: Military Judge Lind ruled against three defense motions: to dismiss specifications due to vagueness, to dismiss charges for failing to state an offense, and to dismiss lesser-included offenses. The prosecution was allowed to keep the charge alleging Bradley exceeded his authorized computer access because it said it had more evidence to produce in trial. Coombs argued the government was being deceptive, that has no new relevant evidence and is only trying to overcharge Bradley. The prosecution’s discovery delays — to review material the defense requested originally — will push the court martial back until November or January.