In 2011, Chelsea E. Manning, then serving as Spc. Bradley E. Manning, a former Army intelligence specialist assaulted a female superior while deployed in Iraq–an incident that led to his bust to private first class.
“He threw his hands up in the air, yelled “no,” and rushed me,” said Spc. Jihrleah W. Showman in a sworn statement.
Manning, a biological male who “transitioned” to a female and changed his first name to Chelsea while in prison, was convicted in 2013 on 21 charges, including six counts of espionage for his role in stealing and leaking classified information to Wikileaks during a deployment to Iraq in 2009.
“He punched me in face and kind of body-slammed me,” Showman said.
“Then I pushed my chair back, he rushed me again, and I pinned him to the ground and screamed at him,” she said.Showman, who was Manning’s superior in Iraq, testified for the prosecution during his trial. She testified at great length about Manning’s mental state and bizarre behavior while under her supervision.
When asked about repercussions from the physical attack, Showman said that a lieutenant changed the code to a cipher lock on an office door and demanded that Manning have his weapon taken away. The next day, she said that she and lieutenant wrote a derogatory report on Manning, demanding that he have his security clearance pulled, in an effort to make the company commander aware of the situation.
In her testimony, she described outbursts that Manning would have at least once per week, and how Manning could not work after being corrected for such behavior.
“He would go completely rigid if he was corrected on anything,” she said.
Showman described a time shortly after an Equal Opportunity (EO) report had been filed for use of offensive language that Manning began using the words “faggoty” and “gay” in a derogatory manner.
“I sent out a shop email reminding everyone of the EO complaint,” she said.
Showman said that she believed that there were many reasons that Manning should not have been deployed in the first place.
“He would have emotional breakdowns – he would freeze emotionally; he stated that he felt no loyalty to this nation, that the flag on his shoulder meant nothing to him; he stated several times that he felt paranoid, that people were listening in on him; at one point he described to me that in the process of joining the Army, that he had to scrub the internet of anything that had his name on it or he wouldn’t have gotten a security clearance,” she said.
She said that the night before Manning allegedly assaulted her, she found him on the floor in a conference room in the fetal position rocking back and forth.
“I was just counting down the days until he lost it, we all thought that way.”
Showman could not be reached for comment for this story.
Manning’s prison sentence was commuted by President Barack H. Obama to just seven years, and he was released on May 17.
Manning is now running for Senate.
— Chelsea E. Manning (@xychelsea) January 14, 2018
The Federal Election Commission received Jan. 11 Manning’s filing for candidacy in the Maryland senate race. Manning, who is now a resident of Bethesda, is one of four Democrats running for the seat held by Democrat Sen. Benjamin L. Cardin, who is not seeking re-election.