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Bradley Manning Linked To Afghan Leak: WSJ

Pfc Private Bradley Manning, in U.S. Army custody and suspected of providing a classified video of a U.S. helicopter attack on Iraqis that resulted in the deaths of two Reuters journalists has been implicated by computer evidence to the Afghanistan documents published by WikiLeaks, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

An excerpt of a report by Julian Barnes of the WSJ:

Investigators have found concrete evidence linking Pfc. Bradley Manning with the leak of classified Afghanistan war reports, a U.S. defense official said.

A search of the computers used by Pfc. Manning yielded evidence he had downloaded the Afghanistan war logs, which span 2004-2009, the official said. It isn't clear precisely what that evidence is.

Manning, 22, was an Army intelligence analyst. He has been charged with mishandling classified information.

One charge against him was that he transferred classified material to his personal computer.

But there were indications from information he shared in on-line chats with a former hacker who informed the government of Manning's activities that the army private might have downloaded a huge amount of classified information.

From a July 6, 2010 Associated Press story:

Manning wrote he had copied onto compact discs "possibly the largest data spillage in American history" while listening and lip-synching to Lady Gaga's "Telephone." He wrote that he exploited "a perfect storm" of military computer vulnerability: "weak servers, weak logging, weak physical security, weak counterintelligence, inattentive signal analysis."

His motive, according to the chat logs: "I want people to see the truth ... because without information, you cannot make informed decisions as a public." Manning wrote that he hoped to provoke worldwide discussion, debates and reform, according to the chat logs.

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