US Army intel analyst arrested over Wikileaks probe

Bradley Manning

Bradley Manning

Speaking last Thursday at the annual Personal Democracy Conference in New York, Daniel Ellsberg said he was amazed that the US National Security Agency “can’t crack” Wikileaks. The former Pentagon employee, who in 1971 leaked the Pentagon Papers, was referring to the activist website that anonymously publishes secret governmental and corporate documents from around the world. But Ellsberg may have been talking too soon. On Sunday, Wired magazine’s Threat Level blog revealed that a US Army intelligence analyst had been detained for allegedly giving Wikileaks secret video footage and “hundreds of thousands of classified State Department records”. Specialist Bradley Manning, 22, was reportedly detained two weeks ago by the US Army’s Criminal Investigation Division while stationed in Forward Operating Base Hammer, near Baghdad, Iraq. Although he has not yet been formally charged, Threat Level says his arrest is connected to the recent exposure of a video taken from a US military helicopter in July 2007, which shows US forces indiscriminately firing on what appear to be Iraqi civilians, killing 12 people, including two employees of the Reuters news agency, and wounding two children. He is also allegedly connected to a rumored leak of over a quarter of a million US diplomatic cables, which may or may not be in Wikileaks’ possession. Interestingly, Manning was nabbed after he contacted reformed hacker Adrian Lamo, and boasted of his role in the leaks. Lamo, who has in the past supported Wikileaks, eventually contacted the FBI, believing that “Manning’s actions were genuinely dangerous to US national security”. The US State Department, FBI, and Army have all refused commenting on the case.

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

3 Responses to US Army intel analyst arrested over Wikileaks probe

  1. j.bamford says:

    Wikileaks is itself an intelligence/disinformation operation wall to wall , just like Stratfor is CIA disinformation…

  2. Yeti says:

    Good article on wikileaks case here:

    That article goes into his motive and shows he is not the hero he is being made out to be. In short, it shows how a guy who was witness to the collateral damage video was glad the video got out. Okay. But, then it showed how the guy was sickened to see the Army leaker went so far as to leak hundreds of thousands of totally unrelated documents.

    I would point out it also says he got the original video from a folder from a JAG’s system. That very well may mean he blew a legitimate case.

    IMO, while the press and many people may applaud the leaking of the video… I doubt anyone but the most depraved would applaud the leaking of the other documents. He already only had a very small audience in the first place.

    This says he is depraved and what he did was not out of conscience, but out of slander. Like many, he seems to have gotten off on judging those around him and thinking himself morally & intellectually superior to them.

    I wonder if governments who hire these people ever bother to actually impress upon them what they are doing and why, the importance of it. And why keeping secrets is not only ethical but necessary.

    Because this guy doesn’t seem to have a clue.

    Also, with all of his nerves… why was he given so much access to so much information and without a routine lie detector testing?

    Maybe he just hacked it all up. Which is a modern danger. Even the lowliest IT guy might hack around on networks these days. But he seems to have been doing some very critical intelligence analysis as part of his job.

    Maybe this speaks of a deep weakness in military networks. Shouldn’t there be somesort of connection rule set up showing unusual traffic patterns, like, “X system connecting to restricted Y system”?

  3. Yeti says:


    If that is the case, then why bother with the controversy over the 260,000 diplomatic cablings?

    On OP and “NSA can’t hack wikileaks” point… maybe some are thinking that wikileaks is, in fact, some CIA disinformation point. Because, A. how does anyone know if wikileaks would be hacked by NSA or not? and B. why would NSA try to hack wikileaks? To do what?

    Shut it down? Erase all the information? Who else but US intel would have motive to do that.

    Maybe wikileaks is a foreign intel honeypot designed exactly for this suspense filled moment: see what the US intel would do if put in this situation.

    They really can’t do anything. The wikileaks ppl are probably simply preparing all those papers as we speak right now to publish online. Any hack or any stopping of it except by lawful means would simply say “this is what US intel does” to the world.

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