Chelsea ManningCommunityThe Dissenter

Bradley Manning’s Trial, Day 10 (Live Updates)

Manning defense team. (Illustration by Clark Stoeckley.)

4:25 PM EST The trial will resume tomorrow at noon. There will be more stipulated testimonies read in court and we will be starting later because the government and defense have to come to an agreement on additional stipulated testimonies.

4:20 PM EST Court is in recess for the day. Final testimony came after a closed session that lasted a little over 45 minutes. Special Agent David Shaver testified about Manning searching for WikiLeaks and how Manning had also made some searches for things related to Iraq.

3:15 PM EST Court goes into closed session to hear classified testimony on one of the Espionage Act charges that Manning faces [Specification 3 of Charge 2, if one references the charge sheet].

2:50PM EST  Court will be entering closed session for testimony from Special Agent David Shaver related to one of the Espionage Act charges Manning faces.

1:57PM EST  Court is back in session after lunch break. Right now, there are mostly technical discussion points about forensic examination of evidence – network logs, dataflow logs or firewall logs, etc.

1:21PM EST  The press does not have contemporaneous access to stipulated testimonies entered into the record in Bradley Manning’s trial. There have not been any stipulations or prosecution exhibits updated since June 18.

12:32PM EST  It is clear after testimony was read into the record today that Bradley Manning never hacked into the database to access the diplomatic cables.

12:24PM EST  There are ten times as many spectators in attendance than there were last week.

12:20 PM EST Gerald Mundy, who served as the Intelligence and Resource Branch Manager at the State Department, had his stipulated testimony entered into the record. It involved the firewall logs that showed Manning accessed the database of diplomatic cables.

Perhaps the most notable aspect of the testimony was this: “There is no evidence that Pfc. Manning used any tools to defeat the firewall protection,” which means Manning did not engage in hacking to access the cables.

11:16 AM EST Former deputy chief information officer Charlie Wisecarver of the State Department did not know if the database of diplomatic cables would have the none of the “nation’s most closely held secrets.” He did say, however, it should not have had any “top secret information” since it was on the secret classified network.

No distribution, according to Wisecarver, was a caption for “messages of high sensitivity.” That could involve “something embarrassing about Department of Defense. Something that should not be shared.”

11:15 AM EST At no point was the database of diplomatic cables – Net-Centric Diplomacy – ever inaccessible because Manning pulled cables from the database for release to WikiLeaks.

11:12 AM EST One of the tags on cables could be “TERREP” or “terrorist reporting.” According to a search on the “Cablegate Search” database, 29 cables given to WikiLeaks had this marking.

It is unknown what cables the military has charged Manning with disclosing without proper authorization because that information is classified. There are 75 diplomatic cables the military has charged Manning with releasing.

11:09 AM EST There were no individual restrictions on access to the database of diplomatic cables. If someone had access to the database, they could basically go anywhere in the database without limitations, according to Wisecarver.

11:05 AM EST Former Deputy Chief Information Officer (CIO) Charlie Wisecarver took the stand to testify as a prosecution witness. He described how the Net-Centric Diplomacy database (NCD), which contains the diplomatic cables Manning disclosed, was started.

It had been started after the September 11th attacks under the original program name, “Horizontal Fusion,” which was a Defense Department program. The intent was to make information available to the community that used the secret classified information network called SIPRNet. The idea was that “there’s a wealth of information that needed to be made available to folks on the ground, to the warfighters,” Wisecarver said.

Original Post

Military court proceedings at Fort Meade in Pfc. Bradley Manning’s trial continued with a full day of witnesses testifying and testimony from witnesses agreed upon between the government and defense being read into the record.

The following witnesses were expected to testify:

  • Ms. Tasha Thian (stipulation): Records custodian for the Department of State
  • Mr. Charlie Wisecarver: Expert on Department of State Net-Centric Diplomacy
  • Mr. Albert J. Janek (stipulation): Expert of Department of State server logs
  • Mr. Gerald Mundy (stipulation): Expert of Department of State firewall logs
  • Special Agent Ronald Rock (stipulation): Department of State evidence collection
  • Special Agent Kirk Ellis (stipulation): Department of State evidence collection
  • Mr. Jim Downey (stipulation): Expert on CENTAUR NetFlow data
  • Special Agent David Shaver: Computer forensics [likely to be classified testimony]

Each witness was scheduled to testify in relation to Manning’s disclosure of State Department diplomatic cables.

Though military public affairs indicated that Wisecarver was an “expert” on the Net-Centric Diplomacy database, the  actually did not qualify him as an expert. The defense objected to a good portion of his testimony because they argued he did not know the mechanics of the database.

Yesterday, there was argument in court over the admission of evidence as fact. The defense moved to admit a memo by Rear Admiral Kevin Donegan of US Central Command that would contest stipulated testimony from CW5 Jon LaRue, an Apache helicopter pilot who reviewed the “Collateral Murder” video.

The defense specifically wanted to challenge this portion of the testimony, which asserts that tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) were revealed:

…The Apache video shows the high-action display. The high action display shows the use of a laser for ranging, altitude and air speed. The laser also shows angles of engagement. The ranges and attack approaches are TTPs. Based on my experience and training, TIPs are sensitive Army aviation information. Adversarial forces who know TIPs could be able to anticipate United States operations and the adversarial forces will be able to plan more effective attacks as a result. The high action display also shows the heading tape, which reveals the sensor and the sensor’s acquisition of tm?gets and other information. This display of the sensor in action could be used to determine the limitations of the sensor’s capabilities. Based on my experience and training, the sensor’s capabilities are sensitive Army aviation infotmation. The sensor also reveals the position of the helicopter during an operation, which could be used to detetmine more aspects of TTPs. TTPs are a puzzle, and revealing any piece could make solving the puzzle easier for an adversary…

Judge Army Col. Denise Lind read a part of the memo that was relevant:

Under this category, operational information may be unclassified if the information describes a past event in general terms, provides no indicators of potential future operations, does not provide specific locations, unit data, TTPs, or does not embarrass coalition members.

The government challenged the defense’s effort to have this memo admitted as evidence arguing it was opinion and nothing definitive on the video. But, Lind noted that LaRue had testified that “TTPs are a puzzle and revealing any piece can make the puzzle easier for an adversary.” She seemed to think Donegan’s testimony would be relevant, at least if he was brought in as a witness, so the defense could attempt to rebut LaRue’s testimony.

Lind did not rule on this testimony. It is unknown when a ruling will be issued.

The press has not been able to see motions related to this evidence the defense wants admitted. Military public affairs officers are supposedly working on this “complex question” to figure out if or how the press could read copies before the judge makes a ruling.


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Kevin Gosztola

Kevin Gosztola

Kevin Gosztola is managing editor of Shadowproof Press. He also produces and co-hosts the weekly podcast, "Unauthorized Disclosure."