Wikileaks soldier reveals why he shared secrets

Bradley Manning
Image caption Manning denied a more serious charge of aiding the enemy.

The US soldier accused of giving large numbers of secret documents to Wikileaks has admitted he is guilty to 10 of the 22 charges against him. But he denied a more serious charge of aiding the enemy.

Reporter: Steve Kingstone

Report

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We now have a first-hand account of what compelled Bradley Manning to carry out the biggest leak of government secrets in American history.

He told the military court he'd been appalled by the "bloodlust" of a helicopter mission in Iraq - video of which he passed on to Wikileaks. He said that while serving in Iraq, he'd become depressed at what he called America's "obsession" with capturing and killing human targets. And that the American people should know the "true costs of war".

As for the leaked State Department cables, Private Manning said they "documented backdoor deals and criminality" unbecoming of a superpower, and insisted his conscience was clear.

The military judge accepted the defendant's plea of guilty to 10 of the 22 counts. But Bradley Manning denies the most serious charge of aiding America's enemies - a charge which potentially carries a life sentence. Prosecutors have indicated that they plan to push ahead with a full court martial in the summer.

Vocabulary

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first-hand account: laporan tertulis atau lisan tentang sesuatu hal dari seseorang yang terlibat langsung

compelled: mendorong, menyebabkan

leak: bocoran, secara sengaja menyebarluaskan informasi rahasia kepada umum

bloodlust: kenikmatan melihat kekerasan

cables: telegram

backdoor: secara diam-diam, lewat jalan belakang

unbecoming: tidak layak, tidak bisa diterima (untuk perilaku)

plea: pernyataan yang diberikan di pengadilan untuk menanggapi dakwaan

life sentence: hukuman seumur hidup

push ahead with: akan tetap meneruskan

court martial: pengadilan militer

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