Chelsea Manning Released
Wrongfully detained in brutalizing solitary confinement at the Alexandria, VA Detention Center since March 8 for invoking her constitutional right to remain silent, Chelsea Manning was released on Thursday.
Her freedom may be short-lived. She’s subpoenaed to appear before another grand jury next week — re-imprisoning her the the third time likely in response to once again invoking her constitutional rights.
In police state America, that’s not good enough, unlawful harshness targeting redoubtable whistleblowers like Manning, Julian Assange, and many others like them.
Washington wants them punished for doing the right thing — how all rogue states operate extrajudicially.
Manning was jailed in March for refusing to testify against Assange, what subpoenaing her before a grand jury was and remains all about.
A statement by her supporters said the following:
“Today marked the expiration of the term of the grand jury, and so, after 62 days of confinement, Chelsea was released from the Alexandria Detention Center earlier today.”
“Unfortunately, even prior to her release, Chelsea was served with another subpoena. This means she is expected to appear before a different grand jury, on Thursday, May 16, 2019, just one week from her release today.
“It is therefore conceivable that she will once again be held in contempt of court, and be returned to the custody of the Alexandria Detention Center, possibly as soon as next Thursday, May 16.
“Chelsea will continue to refuse to answer questions, and will use every available legal defense to prove to District Judge Trenga that she has just cause for her refusal to give testimony.”
A member of her legal team attorney Moira Meltzer-Cohen explained that the “only permissible purpose for confinement under the civil contempt statute is to attempt to coerce a witness to comply with the subpoena, or ‘purge’ their contempt,” adding:
“If it is no longer possible to purge the contempt,” in Manning’s case because she’s “un-coercible,” then confinement has been transformed from coercive into punitive, in violation of the law.”
Her actions and public statements made clear that her principles and honor remain firm, that her soul isn’t for sale, that she won’t turn her “back on everything” she “care(s) about and fight(s) for.”
“I can either go to jail or betray my principles,” she said, adding: “The latter exists as a much worse prison than the government can construct.”
When appearing before a newly convened grand jury next Thursday, she’s virtually certain to stand by the position she affirmed above.
Prepared to handle the affront to her fundamental rights and dignity, she’s willing to “face the consequences” for upholding principles she lives by and won’t sacrifice.
That’s what courage in the face of police state harshness is all about.
She’s expected to issue a statement on her intentions, perhaps later today or over the weekend.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”