Bradley Manning reads a 35 page statement Thursday, "at a providence inquiry for his formal plea of guilty to one specification as charged and nine specifications for lesser included offenses." The New York Times reports that the guilty pleas expose him to up to twenty years in prison. The private whistleblower released classified documentation, including video showing American soldiers killing unarmed Iraqi civilians and two Reuters journalists.
The twenty-five year old soldier said that he wanted to share with the world the true cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and also stated, "I believed that if the general public, especially the American public, had access to the information .. this could spark a debate on the role of the military and our foreign policy in general."
In the video below, attorney Michael Ratner, with the Center For Constitutional Rights, describes the scene in the courtroom.
*Photo credit, top left/courtesy of Gay Liberation Network/"Americans Have The Right To Know - Free Bradley Manning." June 2011 Free Bradley Manning Rally In Leavenworth, Kansas.