Obama commutes sentence for Chelsea Manning, a WikiLeaks source

Manning, who had been sentenced to 35 years in prison, will be freed in May

President Barack Obama has commuted the prison sentence of Chelsea Manning, the former U.S. soldier who disclosed classified data to WikiLeaks relating to the Iraq War.

Manning was originally serving a 35-year sentence, but on Tuesday Obama reduced it. She’ll now be freed on May 17.

Manning was convicted of leaking U.S. military and diplomatic information to WikiLeaks back in 2010 that included videos of airstrikes in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with classified documents sent to the U.S. State Department. She was arrested and began serving jail time the same year.

The data supplied by Manning helped put WikiLeaks on the map as source for secret government information but drew swift condemnation from U.S. officials.

Obama commuted Manning's sentence because he believed she had accepted responsibility and expressed remorse for her crimes, according to White House officials. She had also been behind bars for over six years, comparable to what similar offenders had served, they said.

News of the commutation came days after WikiLeaks tweeted that its founder, Julian Assange, would agree to be extradited to the U.S. if Obama granted Manning clemency. Assange has been living in the Ecuadorian embassy in London under asylum following an attempt to extradite him to Sweden over alleged sexual offenses.

White House officials said Manning’s commutation had nothing to do with Assange, even as U.S. intelligence officials have blamed WikiLeaks for helping Russia to influence last year’s presidential election.

It’s not clear whether WikiLeaks' founder will honor his pledge. On Tuesday, Assange simply thanked supporters of Manning. “Your courage and determination made the impossible possible,” he said in a tweet through WikiLeaks. Noted leaker Edward Snowden also welcomed the news on Twitter.

Manning's supporters say she's a whistleblower and have campaigned for her release. But others oppose her release. On Tuesday, Republican House leader Paul Ryan called her commutation "outrageous."

"Chelsea Manning's treachery put American lives at risk and exposed some of our nation's most sensitive secrets," he said in a statement.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags governmenthacking

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Kan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?