Transitioning Whistleblower Chelsea Manning Gets Hormone Replacement Therapy

Challenging the Rhetoric

bradley-chelsea-manning-sues-pentagon-hagel-gender-dysphoria IMAGE SOURCE:

by Cheri RobertsChallenging the RhetoricThe Guerilla Media Network

In a long fought battle, imprisoned 26-year-old former military intelligence analyst turned Whistleblower, Chelsea Manning*, has been granted her request for hormone therapy by Col. Erica Nelson, commandant of the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

Last September, Manning, who suffers from gender dysphoria, filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The lawsuit was filed against Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks for their failure to provide appropriate medical treatment for her condition and claimed Manning was suicidal and at risk for self-castration if she did not receive treatment.

In the filing Manning said,

It has now been more than four years since I was first diagnosed with gender dysphoria, a condition that I have struggled with my entire life…I do not believe I will be able to survive…

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Barrett Brown: why his sentencing hearing was sabotaged; his case should now be thrown out


On Tuesday the sentencing of Barrett Brown, a US journalist, was delayed for a second time and postponed until January 22 of next year. At the hearing the prosecution dramatically presented 500 pages of new evidence, seemingly unrelated to the charges to which Brown was awaiting sentencing. The only explanation for this is that it was a clumsy attempt by the prosecution to provide the judge with a basis for awarding a maximum sentence at the January hearing. But the behaviour of the prosecution at the hearing revealed several important ambiguities that can only be described as (unintended) prosecutional sabotage. (See also video at end.)

Firstly. The prosecution took the opportunity at the hearing to bring up matters relating to an earlier charge against Brown that was subsequently dropped – namely the alleged posting of a link to data hacked from Stratfor. Marlo Cadeddu, the Defense attorney told the court…

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The Nobel Peace Prize: well-deserved and no room for criticism

Notes from Self

On Friday, the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize was jointly awarded to Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai. It would be difficult to fault the Nobel committee for its decision and I have no intention of doing so. Both Satyarthi and Yousafzai are well deserving of the honours for their, as the Nobel citation reads,

struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education.

And not just for that but also for their inspiring personal courage.

What is more, the decision to award the Nobel Peace Prize jointly to Malala Yousafzai – a 17-year-old Pakistani Muslim – and Kailash Satyarti – a 60-year-old Indian Hindu – very much sets a sign.

The Nobel Committee regards it as an important point for a Hindu and a Muslim, an Indian and a Pakistani, to join in a common struggle for education and against extremism,

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When organized political action is like a cult


Distanced observations on cults and active politics 

“ When a religion is good, I conceive that it will support itself; and when it does not support itself, and God does not take care to support it, so that its professors are obliged to call for the help of a civil power, ‘tis a sign, I apprehend, of its being a bad one.”  –  Benjamin Franklin

It’s not hard to observe the ardent manipulations to “heed the will of God” by lending your money, labor or power to any number of religious or spiritual groups active in politics.  The following observations could apply to almost any cult or even major religion active in the political field.  However, instead of picking on someone really obvious like LaRouche PAC, I’m going to go for the one hiding in plain sight. The one we see influencing media, appropriations committees, a war-driven economic and foreign…

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Updates via Pvt. Manning Family Fund and WiseUp Wales

News from Leavenworth: Chelsea Manning receives a family visit

Work, Study, Mail Order Shoes and Junk Mail!

But first London

On Monday 3 February, a group of long-time supporters of Chelsea Manning welcomed her aunt Sharon and uncle Joe to Giuseppe Conlon Catholic Worker House in London. Sharon and Joe were to fly out from Heathrow the next day and would be visiting Chelsea at Fort Leavenworth the next weekend along with Chelsea’s sister Casey. This was to be the first visit since Chelsea was convicted last August and sentenced to 35 years in jail (for telling the truth about the wars being fought in our names and more) following over three years in pretrial detention. The Private Manning Family Fund paid for both the Transatlantic and internal flights for this trip along with a contribution to a night in a hotel and other travel expenses. All this came from donations and fundraising events, so a big Thank You to everyone who has given to the fund over the past six months.

Emmy cooked a wonderful lunch for us and we were treated by Razz, John McClean, Dave Turley and Eden Boucher to musical entertainment including solidarity songs that have featured at many of the London vigils for Manning over the past three years. Later the same day Sharon, Joe and Ciaron visited Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy.

As we wished Sharon and Joe a safe journey and a successful visit, we were anxious about how the trip would work out. They had previously been turned away from Quantico Brig and had very nearly been refused entry on their last visit to Leavenworth over documentation requirements they hadn’t been told about in advance, resulting in what should have been a visit of several hours after travelling thousands of miles being cut down to just 40 minutes. When Casey called Joe in the middle of the day to say there was a problem this time over documentation that had to be sorted NOW or the visit would be refused, we feared the worst. So it has been a huge relief for us to hear that the visits were a success and everything went smoothly, although right up to the day before the first visit, Sharon and Joe had still not heard for sure that everything was in order.


Chelsea is focused, keeping busy and in good spirits

Sharon and Joe have brought back reassuring news from Fort Leavenworth of Chelsea’s living conditions, her mood and how she’s occupying her time. Chelsea is busy working on her appeal and has a desk and a typewriter in her room that she can use for this purpose. She also spends a lot of time in the prison library and has a job in the kitchens doing a variety of tasks on a fortnightly rota. The Private Manning Support Network has arranged for her to receive the Washington Post and New York Times every day and family members have set up subscriptions to scientific journals Chelsea requested. Emma from PMSN is assisting Chelsea with organising the educational courses she wants to take and is keeping in regular contact by phone.

The visiting arrangements sound relaxed, with all the prisoners and their visitors in a large visiting room, able to make physical contact and with the guards giving them plenty of space. Casey, who had seen Chelsea during the trial, commented that she was now looking much better and had regained a bit of weight. Chelsea acknowledged this and said she had been under a lot of stress during the trial (no surprises there). The visiting room had vending machines but Chelsea refused the offer of ‘anything you like’ from them, saying that she’s now sticking to a healthy diet and has got used to not eating any junk food!

Chelsea might be successfully avoiding junk food, but there’s no escaping junk mail even in prison, most recently an invitation to buy double glazing and a conservatory! So, how would a double glazing company get Chelsea’s Leavenworth contact details? Probably not from the Write Chelsea section of the Support Network website (follow the link for Chelsea’s address and instructions on how to send her real mail). Prisoners have to wear prison issue clothes but are allowed their own shoes and Chelsea had also been given back her own glasses. She had sent for a new pair of navy and white Converse trainers by mail order; this might explain the junk mail but she’s chuffed with the shoes!

Support for Chelsea in Kansas City

Sharon, Joe and Casey made two visits to Chelsea during their weekend stay in Kansas, on the Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning, three hours each time. On Saturday evening, Sharon and Joe met Frank Cordaro of Des Moines Catholic Worker, along with Ann Suellentrop and Marc Saviano who spoke about local support for Chelsea and offered to assist family members with future visits including accommodation in Kansas City if required.

The Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence

Chelsea Manning is the recipient of this year’s Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence, presented at the Oxford Union on 19 February. Read more about the award on Report and photos now here.