Bradley Manning Wants to Tell Court Why He Did It

He hoped to 'spark a domestic debate' on foreign policy

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Feb 27, 2013 3:43 PM CST

(Newser) – Bradley Manning passed classified documents to WikiLeaks because he wanted to "spark a domestic debate on the role of our military and foreign policy in general," says a statement he's hoping to read in court tomorrow. The statement, which prosecutors read segments of at a press event today, would be Manning's first public explanation for his actions. Prosecutors are arguing that it shouldn't be allowed, because Manning would be admitting to "uncharged misconduct"—admitting he was trying to spark debate, for instance, could open Manning to a charge of trying to "discredit" the US military, NBC News reports.

The battle comes on the same day the Pentagon agreed to publish 84 previously secret rulings in the case, the Guardian reports. Some of the rulings had paradoxically been read in court in front of journalists, but hadn't been published. One example: Yesterday, the judge read a ruling stating that Manning had not been denied his right to a speedy trial, despite years of pre-trial incarceration, the AP reports.

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, right, is escorted out of a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., Monday, June 25, 2012, after a pretrial hearing.
Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, right, is escorted out of a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., Monday, June 25, 2012, after a pretrial hearing.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
In this Nov. 29, 2012 file photo, Army Pfc. Bradley Manning steps out of a security vehicle as he is escorted into a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md.
In this Nov. 29, 2012 file photo, Army Pfc. Bradley Manning steps out of a security vehicle as he is escorted into a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
In this Nov. 28, 2012 file photo, Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, center, steps out of a security vehicle as he is escorted into a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., for a pretrial hearing.
In this Nov. 28, 2012 file photo, Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, center, steps out of a security vehicle as he is escorted into a courthouse in Fort Meade, Md., for a pretrial hearing.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, HO)
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