Investigators Find No Direct Link Between Bradley Manning and Julian Assange

Submitted by Elaine Magliaro, Guest Blogger

Jim Miklaszewski, Chief Pentagon Correspondent for NBC News, reported on Monday that investigators have not been able to find a direct connection between Bradley Manning, the army private suspected of leaking classified documents to Wikileaks, and Julian Assange.  Last month, Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, told MSNBC that he was not sure that Manning was the source for the leaked documents that were posted on his site.

According to Miklaszewski, U.S. military officials have said that investigators have determined that Manning allegedly downloaded thousands of documents to his own computer unlawfully and then passed them on to an unauthorized individual. There is, however, no evidence that Manning passed the documents directly to Assange. “That’s not how our technology works, that’s not how our organization works,” Assange said. “I never heard of the name of Bradley Manning before it appeared in the media.” Assange has also claimed the allegations that WikiLeaks had conspired with Bradley Manning were “absolute nonsense.”

 If it is true that the U. S. government has no proof of a direct link between Pvt. Manning and Julian Assange, Glenn Greenwald believes this leaves the Department of Justice with two options:

  1. Prosecute Wikileaks and its founder Julian Assange for receiving and publishing classified information—which Greenwald says is not a crime in the United States “and could not be prosecuted as one without criminalizing much of investigative journalism.”
  2. Honor the First Amendment, and admit that Wikileaks did not commit a crime. 



Glenn Greenwald

51 thoughts on “Investigators Find No Direct Link Between Bradley Manning and Julian Assange”

  1. From (2/1/2011)

    Bradley Manning is UK citizen and needs protection, government told
    Amnesty International asks government to intervene on behalf of soldier suspected of having passed US secrets to WikiLeaks

    Clive Stafford Smith, director of Reprieve, which provides legal assistance to those facing capital punishment and secret imprisonment, likened the conditions under which Manning is held to those in Guantánamo Bay.

    “The government took a principled stance on Guantánamo cases even for British residents, let alone citizens, so you would expect it to take the same stance with Manning.”

    Manning is a UK citizen by descent from his Welsh mother, Susan. Government databases on births, deaths and marriages show she was born Susan Fox in Haverfordwest in 1953.

    She married a then US serviceman, Brian Manning, stationed at a US base near the city, and they had a daughter, Casey, in the same year. Bradley was born in Oklahoma in 1987.

    Born in the US, he is a US citizen. But under the British Nationality Act of 1981, anyone born outside the UK after 1 January 1983 who has a mother who is a UK citizen by birth is British by descent.

    “Nationality is like an elastic band: it stretches to one generation born outside the UK to a British parent. And that makes Bradley Manning British,” said Alison Harvey, head of the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association in London.

    So far, however, Manning’s British status has not impinged itself upon the UK authorities. The British embassy in Washington said it had not received any requests to visit Manning in jail. “It hasn’t crossed our path yet,” an official said.

    The issue of the soldier’s nationality has been bubbling furiously on Twitter in recent days and has been taken up by the UK branch of the Bradley Manning supporters network.

  2. Elaine,

    You have out done yourself again…now if we could get the others to catch up to your speed….only kidding…..

  3. Openleaks, WikiLeaks Rival, Launches New Secret-Spilling Site (1/28/2011)

    DAVOS, Switzerland — A former WikiLeaks spokesman launched a rival website Friday, saying he planned to give whistleblowers more control over the secrets they spill.

    The new platform, called OpenLeaks, will allow sources to choose specifically who they want to submit documents to anonymously, such as to a particular news outlet, said Daniel Domscheit-Berg.

    “We’d like to work with media outlets that have an interest in informing the public,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum meeting of top business and political leaders in the Swiss resort of Davos.

    The difference between his group and WikiLeaks, he said, would be that his group leaves reviewing the material up to the publication or advocacy group chosen by the source to receive the information.

    WikiLeaks has struggled to wade through the vast amounts of material it received – particularly the hundreds of thousands of U.S. diplomatic cables – and been criticized for sharing the data with only a handful of media outlets around the world.

  4. Patty C. aka Jill Chavez,

    Would you be willing to comment on the topic instead of me? For example, what do you think about the fact that construction is increasing at Gitmo and that Manning is being tortured? What implications are there to you, if any?

  5. I am a friend of people that are biracial. I think I understand how they feel. They live in hell from what I see. They too must be victims. After all I am Jill I know what being a victim is all about.

  6. This is all connected: “Guantánamo Prisoners Organize Peaceful Sit In to Protest Indefinite Imprisonment and Conditions
    Submitted by davidswanson on Fri, 2011-01-28 15:18

    January 27, 2011, New York– Marking the ninth anniversary of the U.S. military prison camp’s opening, most of the remaining prisoners in Camps 5 and 6 at Guantánamo have joined together to peacefully protest their indefinite imprisonment with a sit-in and signs. This action also comes as the Arab world is witnessing a string of popular uprisings demanding greater freedom, which the men at the base say they have been following. Among the prisoners are men whose detention has been ruled unlawful by U.S. federal judges as well as men deemed eligible for release by the previous and current U.S. administrations.

    This week, Ramzi Kassem, professor of law at the City University of New York and counsel to a number of Guantánamo prisoners, spoke to a client there by phone and learned more about the ongoing peaceful protest, which began thirteen days ago. Abdulhadi, a young man imprisoned at Guantánamo for nearly nine years who spoke with Professor Kassem, explained that he and his fellow prisoners in Camps 5 and 6 were holding a prison-wide peaceful sit-in. Specifically, the prisoners at Guantánamoare refusing to return to their cells for the mandatory nightly lockdown and are sleeping in the recreation yard and in common areas.

    Said Abdulhadi, “We hope that guards, military officials and visiting delegations of Red Cross representatives, Congressional members and journalists hear our cry for freedom.” He added that the prisoners have made signs and posters in English and have plastered these across the cellblocks, asking “Where are the Courts?”, “What About our Rights?”, and “Where is Democracy?” Abdulhadi further explained that the prisoners have been at Guantánamo so long that some of them have learned to read and write in English.

    In a separate call with an attorney last week reported by the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), another man imprisoned at Guantánamo, who wishes to remain anonymous, said, “The construction work going on here is giving us the impression that we are going to be here forever.” He went on to speak of events in Tunisia: “After 23 years of injustice, finally people decided to liberate themselves and seek freedom. Now we need to struggle for ourselves.”

    He described the English protest signs, which include the pleas; “You cannot detain us because of what other people are doing outside. Release us,” “Give us our rights inside the camp. If you don’t want to give us our rights, get us out of here,” “Close this camp of discrimination and racism,” and “Until when are we going to stay here?” (from WarisaCrime)

  7. Don’t worry if you torture someone long enough they’ll say whatever you want them to. The govt. will have that “link” in time, unless enough pressure is put to bear for Manning’s trial.

    If this was a legal process, Manning would have been charged. If convicted, he would be in prison. During this prison time the govt. would have time to LEGALLY examine any leads they wished. As the former commander of Quantico points out, charging and bringing Manning to trial should not be difficult. Yet, he is being imprisoned indefinitely and being tortured, both of which are against US law. So this is not the govt. wishing to pursue a legal course of action. It is a govt. using torture to obtain a confession that meets whatever needs they wish.

    Manning’s friend, David, will try to visit him again this Sat. We’ll see what happens then. BTW, the illegalities involved in detaining Manning’s visitor, in addition to their treatment of Manning and Assagne should give every citizen an insight into what this govt. is about.

  8. From NPR (1/27/2011)
    Assange, Manning: Parallels, But Links Unclear

    Searching For A Link?

    Both men [Assange and Manning] are back in the news this week. British police announced Wednesday they have arrested five men suspected of involvement in cyberattacks against companies that had broken ties with WikiLeaks. The men are believed to be members of an online collective known as “Anonymous,” which has supported Assange and his WikiLeaks organization.

  9. Why is it taking an excessive amount of time for a Court Martial?

    Will those Swiss banks have an account for Pvt. Manning?

    If they do, was he set up?

    Will wickileaks paying for Pvt. Manning’s defense prejudice his case?

    Does payment for his defense affect the charges he must defend against?

    Does the NY Times pay for information or for the defense of any whistleblower?

    This is beginning to stink to high heaven. And, like ZBig, I’d to know if a hostile foreign entity is involved in any way.

  10. From the Deccan Herald (1/14/2011)
    WikiLeaks pays US soldier $15,100 legal fee for leaks

    WikiLeaks’ slow response in coming to the financial aid of its alleged source has long been a cause of frustration for his supporters.

    In the past, the Bradley Manning Support Network has indicated that WikiLeaks had promised to pay up to $50,000 in legal fees, although that offer was reduced to $20,000 in December and the payment ended up being $15,000.

    Part of the problem may be explained by WikiLeaks’ own financial difficulties as a result of Visa, MasterCard and PayPal cutting off its accounts after pressure from the US government.

    The support network calculates that the legal fund needs to have at least $115,000 to fight a vigorous defence. Including the WikiLeaks donation, it has collected more than $100,000.

  11. Buckeye: “I’m still waiting for the bank information Mr. Assange promised us. Maybe when he finishes his book and gets the movie of his life finished he will enlighten us.”


    It goes beyond self-serving motives IMO. Wikileaks is a collective of people and Assange is their public face, he’s not in sole control of what happens. Also, the Wikileaks sites terminated their hosting of the site and some were hacked to disable them. Finding or/and keeping a home may still be a problem even though a new home was touted as on the horizon.

    These are government actions. It has been revealed that the Stuxnet virus was a collaborative effort between America and Israel. That the US conducts cyberwar is now public so there is no more benefit of the doubt given that the US would not or could not conduct an effective cyberwar.

    Any doubt about US’s role in attacking the Wikileaks host servers loses credibility in light of that disclosure. The US as well as other governments are more than capable of waging cyberwar against Wikileaks and the US obviously frightened or leaned on the business’ that were the Wikileaks income pipeline as well as the IP providers with the talk of espionage charges, which would leave ‘collaborators’ in jeopardy. No doubt the US is not alone in these maneuvers.

    I want to see all of the information personally, redacted or not. But here’s the thing, the key file is insurance. As long as it’s not released and information doesn’t flow then Assange and others are probably safe. If the key is released then they have to fear for their lives and that fear would be entirely valid IMO. The government is also threatened because if the key is released and the information isn’t redacted people probably may well die as a result.

    Wikileaks is wounded and for both Wikileaks and the government it’s like having a tiger by the tail, any change in status may well result in a lethal outcome for either party. I’m starting to think the rest of the cables may well never see the light of day.

  12. Elaine,.
    I would like to echo Lotta’s, Blouise and Buddha’s comments. Great thread. And great insights from the group! Let’s hope that Pvt. Manning’s incarceration ends soon. Time for my beauty sleep!

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