Army Intelligence Analyst Detained in WikiLeaks Case

Soldier serving in Iraq detained after leaked video of U.S. helicopter attack.

ByABC News
June 7, 2010, 2:14 PM

WASHINGTON, June 7, 2010— -- A 22 year-old U.S. soldier serving in Iraq has been detained on suspicion that he leaked a classified combat video to the whistleblower website WikiLeaks. The video in question showed a deadly 2007 U.S. helicopter attack in Baghdad that claimed the lives of several civilians, including two photographers working for the Reuters news agency. To watch the video, click HERE.

Army Specialist Bradley Manning, an intelligence analyst from Potomac, Maryland, was stationed at Forward Operating Base Hammer, east of Baghdad, when he was detained a few weeks ago.

The Internet site first reported the details of Manning's detention, which was reportedly prompted by a tip to authorities by a former computer hacker to whom Manning had boasted of his online exploits.

Adrian Lamo told that Manning had told him about leaking the Iraqi combat video, as well as more than 260,000 classified diplomatic cables to the whistleblower site, and combat footage from another controversial airstrike in Garani, Afghanistan, that also resulted in civilian casualties.

A statement released by U.S. Forces-Iraq says Manning is in pretrial confinement in Kuwait "for allegedly releasing classified information."

Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman confirmed to reporters today that Manning is under investigation, in part, for the "alleged unauthorized disclosure of information" to the WikiLeaks site.

According to Lamo, Manning claimed to have used his top secret clearance to peruse classified military and government computer networks that were available to him. He reportedly told Lamo the classified networks contained "incredible things, awful things" that he felt should be made publicly available.

Via his Twitter account, Lamo explained today that he reported Manning to federal authorities out of concern that his actions were compromising national security.

"I outed Manning as an alleged leaker out of duty. I would never out an Ordinary Decent Criminal. There's a difference," tweeted Lamo. He also said he was "heartsick" for Manning and his family, and hoped "they can forgive me someday for doing what I felt had to be done."