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      Free Chelsea Manning!
      Soldier of Humanity
      6 Year Anniversary since the unjust arrest and
      confinement of WikiLeaks whistleblower Chelsea Manning.

      By Azza Rojbi

      Chelsea Manning is a young former intelligence analyst and U.S. soldier currently serving a 35-year military prison sentence. Chelsea is accused of leaking over 260,000 classified United States diplomatic cables, as well as videos and documents which have become known as the Afghan War Diary and the Iraq War Logs. Published on the whistleblower site Wikileaks, they further exposed US war crimes in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world including mass killings, torture, corruption, and the government’s web of lies and attempted cover-up of United States atrocities. May 27, 2016 marked six years since whistleblower Chelsea Manning was put in military custody for telling the truth and acting upon her conscience. Chelsea was also held in solitary confinement for the first 10 months of her incarceration. Despite the tremendous hardship of enduring a 35-year prison sentence, Manning has continued to speak out against injustice. She is an outspoken fighter for social justice, an advocate for queer and trans rights and transparency in government and a frequent contributor to The Guardian Newspaper.

      Chelsea is currently appealing, at the U.S. Army Court of Criminal Appeals, her unjust conviction and 35-year jail sentence under the Espionage Act. You can help raise money for her legal expenses by donating at: http://www.chelseamanning.org/donateappeal

      For more information and to join the campaign for the freedom of Private Chelsea Manning please visit:

      Why I Keep Fighting

      By Chelsea E. Manning

      On Monday May 9th, Chelsea Manning received the 2016 Blueprint Enduring Impact Whistleblowing Prize for her courage and heroic actions. The Blueprint Whistleblowing Prize is awarded annually to whistleblowers in recognition of their: bravery, integrity, commitment to the public interest and positive and enduring impact. Chelsea’s friend Aaron Kirkhouse accepted the award on her behalf and read a speech prepared by her:

      Good evening from sunny Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

      I wish I could be there to accept this award in person, but since I cannot, I am delighted to have Aaron Kirkhouse accept it on my behalf.

      As you know, I am held in an American military prison with only a small library and without access to the internet. In this time of rapid technological advances in social networking and the machine learning age, it’s quite an odd predicament to find myself in.

      Today, when once obscure online refrains are now finding their way into the global lexicon — “pics or it didn’t happen” — it’s easy to feel disconnected from a world exponentially intertwined and dependent on technology.

      As a military prisoner, my public persona is carefully controlled and enforced. Any interviews or statements that I make — such as this one — must be written or dictated through someone else who types it up on my behalf. I am not allowed to be recorded over the telephone, do any video interviews, or have any pictures taken — with the exception of the occasional grainy mug shot. For those living in my situation, it’s easy to start feeling invisible — left behind and dismissed by the rest of a fast-paced society.

      Despite these obstacles, I know I need to keep going. It is important to stay vocal. To stay creative. Active. Motivated. To keep fighting.

      I keep fighting to survive and thrive. I am fighting my court-martial conviction and sentence before a military appeals court, starting this month. I am fighting to make the full investigation by the FBI public. I am fighting to grow my hair beyond the two inch male standards by the U.S. military.

      I keep fighting to warn the world of the dangerous trend in which the only information you can access is the kind that someone with money or power wants you to see.

      And, I keep fighting to let people know that they too can create change. By staying informed and educated, anyone can make a difference. You have the ability to fight for a better world for everyone — even for the most desperate, those at the bottom of the social ladder, refugees from conflict, queer and trans individuals, prisoners, and those born into poverty.

      Thank you all so very much for your support over the years, and thank you to Lady Hollick, Mr. Davis, and Dr. Dreyfus for selecting me to be the first person to receive this award. It is truly an amazing treat. I’m honored that my voice continues to be heard. Thank you for all for listening and choosing to fight alongside me. And of course, thank you to Aaron Kirkhouse for accepting this award for me.

      I am grateful to you all — for being here tonight, and being there for me tomorrow. Think what we might accomplish if we do one thing — perhaps a grand undertaking or even what may seem to be a tiny, insignificant gesture — each day with the simple goal of making the world a better place.

      Good night everyone =)

      Reprinted from: www.chelseamanning.org

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