Whistleblower Chelsea Manning: ‘A Government Can Kill You Without a Trial’

Posted: August 3, 2016 in Uncategorized
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For the first time since her suicide attempt last month, imprisoned whistleblower Chelsea Manning is speaking out.

Manning, 28, is a transgender former soldier who is currently serving a 35-year sentence at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, for releasing thousands of State Department cables to WikiLeaks.On July 5, Manning attempted to end her life, and is now facing additional charges for her attempt, which could leave her serving the remainder of her sentence in solitary confinement.

In a rare interview with Amnesty International, obtained by the Guardian, for an upcoming book titled “Here I Stand,” Manning opened up about her fear of further retribution by the government.

“I am always afraid. I am still afraid of the power of government. A government can arrest you. It can imprison you. It can put out information about you that won’t get questioned by the public – everyone will just assume that what they are saying is true,” Manning stated. “Sometimes, a government can even kill you – with or without the benefit of a trial. Governments have so much power, and a single person often does not. It is very terrifying to face the government alone.”

Manning described being first detained by the military and imprisoned at a camp in Kuwait. She detailed living in a “cage inside of a tent,” and having every aspect of her life, including when she could use the restroom, controlled by those imprisoning her.

“I didn’t have any access to the outside world. I couldn’t make phone calls. I didn’t get any mail. I had very limited access to my lawyers. There was no television or radio or newspapers,” she said. “I lost the sense of where in the world I was. The military had total control over every aspect of my life. They controlled what information I had access to. They controlled when I ate and slept. They even controlled when I went to the bathroom.”

She described being terrified, and sad, and giving up on her will to live.“After several weeks, I didn’t know how long I had been there or how much longer I was going to be staying. It’s an overwhelmingly terrifying feeling. I became very, very sad. At one point, I even gave up on trying to live any more.”

To stay positive in prison, Manning explained that she enjoys reading letters, which can keep her engaged with the outside world.

“I love reading the mail that I get from all over the world. I love talking on the phone with people I care about. I always feel so much better when people send me their warm love and strong words of support. I love staying active and engaged with the world. It is an amazing feeling!” Manning stated.

Mail to Chelsea Manning must be addressed exactly as follows:




More information on what can and cannot be sent can be found here.


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