Court martial delayed again, expected to start June 3

This week’s hearing at Fort Meade ended early, but several important motions, arguments, and updates emerged. The court-martial itself has been pushed back at least until June 3. In opposing defense witnesses, the government said it would try Bradley Manning the same way if he had released documents to the New York Times instead of WikiLeaks. 

By Nathan Fuller, Bradley Manning Support Network. January 9, 2013.

Government prosecutor Angel Overgaard and defense lawyer David Coombs. Sketch by Clark Stoeckley, Bradley Manning Support Network.

Government prosecutor Angel Overgaard and defense lawyer David Coombs. Sketch by Clark Stoeckley, Bradley Manning Support Network.

Just one day after Judge Denise Lind awarded PFC Bradley Manning nearly four months credit toward a potential sentence, the court-martial trial start date has been pushed back three months, from March 6 to June 3, 2013. By then, Bradley will have been imprisoned awaiting trial for more than three full years. The defense will conclude its motion to dismiss charges for lack of a speedy trial next week, January 16-17. At that hearing, Judge Lind will also rule on the prosecution’s motions to preclude evidence of Bradley’s motive and of overclassification.

The delay results from classification issues: the defense needs to determine which classified information will come to light in the trial and to interview government agency representatives before presenting that information to the government. The government then needs 60 days to review that information and determine if it will need to redact, summarize, or substitute classified portions of it, or alternatively if it will need to close the court from the press and public for that information to be litigated.

In the remainder of today’s hearing, the defense asked the court to admit witnesses and the government asked the court to take judicial notice of several documents and facts.

Defense lawyer David Coombs wants to call Col. Morris Davis, a former Guantanamo Bay prosecutor who reviewed Detainee Assessment Briefs (DABs), and he could testify that the government has already released information in the DABs that Bradley is accused of releasing, and therefore Bradley had reason to believe the DABs wouldn’t cause harm to the United States if given to WikiLeaks.

The defense also wants to call Yochai Benkler, who has conducted open-source research of WikiLeaks, to testify that WikiLeaks is a legitimate news organization, which edits and reviews information and isn’t seen as a conduit for Al Qaeda. The government objected to this witness, saying that WikiLeaks’ credibility is irrelevant to Bradley’s intent at the time of the release. Judge Lind shot back asking, if we substituted the New York Times for WikiLeaks, would the government charge Bradley Manning in the same way? Yes, said government prosecutor Angel Overgaard.

The government asked the court to take judicial notice of a news article reporting that Julian Assange was in Iceland in February 2010 and a New Yorker profile of Assange published in June 2010. The government wants to use these to attempt to build a connection between Assange and Bradley before the release. Government prosecutors also asked to submit information declassified from Osama Bin Laden’s compound, claiming they have a letter from Bin Laden to a member of Al Qaeda asking for Department of Defense documents.

9 thoughts on “Court martial delayed again, expected to start June 3

  1. If there’s a delay until June, Bradley should either be released on bail or released completely. Comparison of NY Times to being a real news service and Wiki is not is absurd. The NY Times rarely has any investigating reporting anymore, so I’d now rate Wiki as a real news service above the Times.

    • Media in Sweden has turned into total nonsensmedia too.Too stupid to pay attention to at all.Going the errands of the White House in USA that is the biggest threat to mankind today,together with the nuclear maffia.

  2. If we had a German soldier come over to report a brutal crime nazis were engaged in some village in Slovakia, That German would be held in high regard by United States. And yet when Bradley Manning went out on the limb and supposedly, reported a violent, despeakable crime, United States has committed, he is being prosecuted as a traitor. This makes no sense to me, a crime is a crime, no matter who commits it. If I report my neighbor for killing his wife, is not any different to what Bradley Manning has been accused of doing.

  3. Only here in the US do we praise revolutionaries and whistleblowers from other countries while detaining and suppressing people doing the same thing here. This trial should be completely public. The only reason to keep press out of the courtroom will be to hide the truth. Truth is the US has committed genocide in the Middle East……Thank you Bradley! Stay strong.

  4. The “persecution” is delaying because they can’t build a real case against Manning, just like they couldn’t build a real case against Ellsberg back in the day. They will cherry-pick and stove-pipe and do a lot of other hyphenated things that are too nasty to type here. THEY should be held accountable; all Bradley Manning did was TELL THE TRUTH. Free Bradley Manning.

  5. What is happening to Brad Manning – reminds me of Stalinism or all the dictatorships, communists, regimes-brutal breaches of basic human rights and government fear of transparency- the need to maintain control and inflict fear and terror as a form of control- a brutal deterrent for any dissidence or alternative viewpoint , I can’t understand why President Obama cant recognize this injustice. What is being inflicted on Manning is wrong -is unjust and essentially evil -so is the US a terrorist state with no moral conscience when it comes to its self appointed right to brutal unethical control
    and the assumed right to win at any cost- the right to kill cruelly and the right to continue lying and never be as a government itself accountable? Bradley Manning was an honest kid with innate respect for truth and human rights and decency- rather than for empire control, fear, lies and injustice Bradley Manning did the right thing- its time for the US to apologize and change its perverse power mentality Free Manning – American Governement APOLOGIZE for cruelty incarceration and LIES- JFK would

  6. I do not think he will receive a fair trail. I do not think that is possible in his case.
    But he did open my eyes and those of millions of others with me. I thank him for that. I never knew American soldiers were so bloodthirsty, so in-respectfulness against human life of innocent people.
    What is the difference between these soldiers and members of Al Qaida except the uniform?
    American soldiers use to be hero’s as in WWI and WWII. Were is the heroism gone? What made them so arrogant and ignorant? Why do they kill children with a 30 mm machine gun and feel so brave? Why are they so treat people in there own state in such a inhuman way with no remorse at all? Are the programmed to think like that or not to think or to feel at all anymore?

    I wonder if Obama will have the guts to let him free before the end of his presidency as the president has the right to do so.

    I do not hate America, because the majority of the Americans does not support these actions at all and from time to time it does good things too, like the war against Milosevic to save Kosovo from another genocide.

    But these actions make America very unpopular in the Arab states. We prefer to be friends with the west and America, but it’s very difficult when they threat our brothers and sisters and their children like they did in Iraq.

    I can only hope that president “Yes we can” Obama will help change the attitude of the army.

    Thank you

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