In a bitter-sweet victory for supporters of the embattled Army Private Bradley Manning, judge Col. Denise Lind acquitted him yesterday of the worst change of “aiding the enemy,” while finding him guilty of at least 19 other charges including violations of the Espionage Act.
Manning himself had pleaded guilty to 10 lesser charges.
Now the sentencing phase of the trial begins during which new witnesses and evidence are being presented, some of it in secret.
Based on the maximum sentences for the 19 charges, Manning could face a maximum of 136 years in prison.
While journalists, soldiers, and other defenders of whistle blowers and free speech breathed a collective sigh of relief over the acquittal on the count of “aiding the enemy,” the 25 year old at the center of the case could potentially never experience freedom again.
GUESTS: Greg Mitchell, award-winning author whose writes a daily blog on WikiLeaks for The Nation magazine, author of Bradley Manning: Truth and Consequences, and The Age of Wikileaks, Ann Wright, former State Department diplomat and retired Army colonel