Chelsea Manning says she's 'figuring out' future


Christian evangelist Franklin Graham expressed his outrage on May 16 that Chelsea Manning was going to be released from a USA military prison on May 17.

Manning served seven years of a 35 year sentence for leaking national security secrets.

"After another anxious four months of waiting, the day has finally arrived", Manning said in a statement hours after her release, according to ABC News.

She clearly looked forward to what life might hold for her outside the military prison walls. "Now hunting for private #healthcare like millions of Americans". Last year, she attempted suicide twice and, after a hunger strike, received a promise of gender-affirmation surgery. "Thank you to everyone for ensuring her safe release and respecting her privacy as she starts to adjust to life outside of prison and rebuild her life following seven years of confinement". "I can imagine surviving and living as the person who I am and can finally be in the outside world".

Other known details come from Manning's GoFundMe page, which was organized by her friends and family.

The Oklahoma native had a hard childhood. "I am not asking for a pardon of my conviction", Manning wrote in her commutation application. The money will be deposited into her bank account upon her release, according to the account.

Those who supported Manning's leaks said that the information she released led to the end of the Iraq war and brought the realities of the overseas war home to the U.S.

Army spokeswoman Cynthia Smith says The transgender soldier was released from Fort Leavenworth on Wednesday.

Manning, of whom few photographs are publicly available, could find refuge at an aunt's home in the Washington region.

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She chose to reveal some of what she knew, including videos and cables to whistleblowing site WikiLeaks.

She revealed previously unknown killings of civilian bystanders in Iraq and Afghanistan, classified intelligence assessments of Guantanamo detainees, revelations that the USA failed to investigate hundreds of reports of abuse by Iraqi police and soldiers, and blunt diplomatic assessments of us allies and adversaries.

She wasn't able to flee overseas like Edward Snowden, who in 2013 released documents showing that the NSA was sweeping up U.S. citizens' communications metadata.

To facilitate her return to civilian life, a program called "Hugs for Chelsea" has raised more than $100,000 so that she can find housing and private health insurance.

And several music stars have teamed up to release an online benefit album, Hugs for Chelsea.

The ex-intelligence analyst - known as Private First Class Bradley Manning - acknowledged leaking the materials and said it was an attempt to expose what she believed was the United States military's apparent disregard for the effects on civilians. After being convicted, Manning announced she was a transgender woman and changed her name to Chelsea.

He described Manning's sentence as "very disproportionate" although Mr Obama's successor, Donald Trump, branded the soldier an "ungrateful traitor" who "should never have been released". Manning was arrested in May 2010 and plead guilty to some of the charges in 2013.

She is also still employed by the army, and retains its insurance coverage.

The Army said on Tuesday that Manning would remain on active duty in a special, unpaid status that will legally entitle her to military medical care, along with commissary privileges.