Chelsea Manning is now a free woman, thanks to Former President Obama commuting her sentence.

  • Chelsea was incarcerated longer than any whistleblower in U.S. history. Before President Obama commuted her sentence, she had been incarcerated for almost 7 years. 11 months of that were in unlawful pre-trial solitary confinement.
  • 35 years was an unfair sentence for the acts she committed, considering that she disclosed the information in the public interest, and the disclosures caused no one any harm.
    • As she explains in her commutation statement, Chelsea pleaded guilty, without the protection of a plea agreement, because she believed the military justice system would understand her motivation for the disclosure and sentence her fairly.  Instead, the military judge sentenced her to 35 years of confinement, despite the fact that there was no historical precedent for such an extreme sentence under similar facts.
  • Chelsea was trapped in a cruel cycle of being punished for attempting suicide with solitary confinement. Being placed in solitary confinement caused her to attempt her life again, and it was possible she was going to be given more solitary confinement for the second suicide attempt. It was likely that this cycle of solitary/suicide attempts would have continued, if no one had stepped in to stop it.