Bradley Manning Support Network
Art. 13 hearing postponed to Nov. 27, followed by Feb. 4 trial start
During this week’s relatively brief motion hearing for Bradley Manning, the prosecution finally handed over to the defense hundreds of emails from Quantico regarding Bradley’s unlawful and abusive confinement conditions at the Marine brig. After sitting on the emails for at least six months, the prosecution gave just 84 of the 1,374 total emails to the defense only hours before defense lawyer David Coombs was set to file his motion on Bradley’s treatment.
Explaining their lengthy delay to an annoyed Judge Denise Lind, the prosecution said they were busy with other matters and had only just come across these emails, and handed them over without being asked. But Coombs, who couldn’t have requested the emails since he didn’t know they existed, was incredulous: the prosecution was “trying to make a lack of due diligence look like altruism,” he said.
This week at Ft. Meade, the prosecution handed over a CD with 600 more of these emails to the defense, and the remaining 700 emails to Judge Lind to review for relevance. The initial set of emails revealed that a three-star general, who we now know is then-Lieutenant General George Flynn and who was far removed from Quantico, ordered and continued to direct Bradley’s treatment.
The new emails could expose more complicit parties that Coombs may call to testify.
Another significant development this week was the new court martial schedule. In receiving hundreds of new documents, Judge Lind pushed back the defense’s motion to dismiss for unlawful pretrial punishment to November 27, after multiple shorter sessions in October and early November. The court martial trial itself is currently slated for February 4 through March 15. For the first time, there is an expectation that a realistic court calendar has been established.
“Not only has a conspiracy to mistreat Bradley at Quantico been established with these new emails, he will have been imprisoned for 988 days by Feb. 4, 2013,” declared Jeff Paterson, Bradley Manning Support Network organizer. “The military has proven itself incapable of providing a fair and speedy trial as required under its own regulations.”
Veterans, anti-war activists, and other supporters of PFC Bradley Manning are preparing to protest for the whistle-blower’s freedom at President Obama’s campaign offices in dozens of major cities around the country on September 6.