Chelsea Manning to participate in documentary about her
- Author: Larry Hoffman May 17, 2017,
May 17, 2017, 23:45
News, citing an unnamed U.S. Army official, reported that Manning was released from Fort Leavenworth military prison at around 2 a.m.
Chelsea was convicted in 2013, following 20 counts, including six Espionage Act violations, theft and cyber fraud. This freed 7,000 active and reserve transgender members to tell the truth about their gender identity, according to Pentagon estimates.
Two days after her commutation, Manning tweeted: "Thank you @BarackObama for giving me a chance. Now hunting for private #healthcare like millions of Americans".
Over the years, Manning, who has a Twitter account run by her supporters, has been vocal about her own imprisonment, gender transition, and current events.
"For the first time, I can see a future for myself as Chelsea", she said in a statement last week ahead of her release.
But Manning, whom Greer considers a personal friend after speaking with her over the phone nearly every week, is "an incredibly driven person and I would expect that we will be hearing from her in her own voice", Greer said.
The Oklahoma native had a hard childhood. After her parents' divorce, Manning moved with her mother to Wales, where she repressed her sexuality and was mocked for her effeminate ways. As such, she may be entitled to military benefits, including health care.
Manning's lawyers, Nancy Hollander and Vincent Ward, confirmed she was released safely on Wednesday.
The 29-year-old, who spent some time in Wales during her teenage years, leaked the data in 2010 while working as an intelligence analyst in Iraq. The Army prohibited visitors - with the exception of her lawyers - unless they knew her prior to her arrest. Her long initial sentence and at times severe treatment while incarcerated - she spent long stretches of time in solitary confinement and at one point was made to sleep naked - made her a cause celebre for anti-war and government transparency advocates.
She wasn't able to flee overseas like Edward Snowden, who in 2013 released documents showing that the NSA was sweeping up United States citizens' communications metadata.
"To ensure the privacy and security of Inmate Manning, no further information concerning the release will be provided", Army spokesman Dave Foster said in a statement.
"Hugs for Chelsea", a digital album available for a $25 donation, features tracks by artists known for their left-wing activism including Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello and Sonic Youth co-founder Thurston Moore.
Although transgender people still complain of widespread discrimination in education, employment and medical care, awareness of the issue has exploded since Manning went to jail.
Chelsea Manning will participate in a documentary about the transgender soldier to be executive produced by "Citizenfour" filmmaker Laura Poitras.
Soon after she was imprisoned, Manning came out as transgender and changed her name to Chelsea. She eventually received hormone treatment while in prison.
Manning is still considered to be on active duty in the Army until her criminal appeal is complete. Trump described Manning as an "ungrateful traitor" who "should never have been released from prison".