Chelsea Manning Writes Open Letter to Fellow Prisoners

Says they kept her alive and will never be forgotten
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 13, 2017 5:35 PM CST
In this undated file photo provided by the U.S. Army, Pfc. Chelsea Manning poses for a photo.   (U.S. Army via AP, File)

(Newser) – In what Jezebel calls "one of the clearest looks we’ve gotten at [Chelsea] Manning’s life inside ... prison," Manning has penned an open letter, published in the Guardian, to the fellow prisoners "who have kept me alive for the past six years." Manning, whose sentence was commuted by Barack Obama before he left office, says that she will never forget her fellow prisoners, who taught her "how to keep going," "how to feel," "how to chill out," and "how to be compassionate," among other things. She says that "when the prison tried to break one of us, we all stood up."

"We were friends in a way few will ever understand. There was no room to be superficial. Instead, we bared it all. We could hide from our families and from the world outside, but we could never hide from each other," she writes. "We argued, we bickered and we fought with each other. Sometimes, over absolutely nothing. But, we were always a family. We were always united." She says that the most important thing her fellow prisoners taught her was "how to write and how to speak in my own voice," when she used to know how to write only in memos. Click for the full letter. (Read more Chelsea Manning stories.)

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