November 1, 2009: Earliest date for which government subpoenas Wikileaks related twitter accounts
November 19, 2009: Earliest possibly date for all charges except accessing the Rejkjavik 13 cable (which was dated January 13)
January 13, 2010: Earliest possible date for accessing the Rejkjavik 13 cable (the date is obviously taken from the date of the cable)
January 21, 2010: Manning leaves for US
February 11, 2010: Manning returns to Baghdad from US
February 19, 2010: Latest possible date for obtaining and communicating the Rejkjavik 13
March 24, 2010: In chat, Manning suggests it took him four months to verify Assange was who he said he was
April 3, 2010: Latest possible date for “wrongfully adding unauthorized software to a Secret Internet Protocol Router network computer”
April 5, 2010: Latest possible date for having unauthorized possession of photos related to the national defense, knowingly exceeding his authorized access on SIPRnet, willfully transmitting it, and intentionally exceeding his authorized access, all in relation to the Collateral Murder video
May 24, 2010: Latest possible date for knowingly exceeding his authorized access to obtain “more than 50 classified United States Department of State cables” and willfully transmitting them
May 27, 2010: Latest possible date for “introducing” classified information onto his personal computer and obtaining “more then 150,000 diplomatic cables;” this date is two days before, according to the charging sheet, Manning’s pre-trial confinement began and presumably ties to the date when they first assessed what they had on Manning’s seized computer
June 17, 2010: Iceland passes Modern Media Initiative
Now, I’m going to have say to more about this (and will add to this timeline), but I wanted to start with this question: what software did Manning allegedly add to a computer on the SIPRNet on April 3, 2010?
Back when the charging document originally came out, I don’t think I made much sense of specification 4 of charge 1, which reads:
SPECIFICATION 4: In that Private First Class Bradley E. Manning, U.S. Army, did, between on or about 19 November 2009 and on or about 3 April 2010, at or near Contingency Operating Station Hammer, Iraq, violate a lawful general regulation, to wit: Paragraph 4-5(a)(3), Army Regulation 25-2, dated 24 October 2007, by wrongfully adding unauthorized software to a Secret Internet Protocol Router network computer.
I noted it this time because it made no sense to me that the government had listed April 5 as last possible day when Manning allegedly leaked the Collateral Murder video, given that Wikileaks publicly claimed–and Manning did too, sort of–that the video had been passed on in February. So why this April date?
But recall how, since that time, Adrian Lamo has repeatedly claimed to know a person or people in Boston who helped Manning by giving him encryption software to help him send classified data in small enough bits to avoid detection.
Adrian Lamo, the California computer hacker who turned in Pte Manning to military authorities in May, claimed in a telephone interview he had firsthand knowledge that someone helped the soldier set up encryption software to send classified information to Wikileaks.
Mr Lamo, who is cooperating with investigators, wouldn’t name the person but said the man was among a group of people in the Boston area who work with Wikileaks. He said the man told him “he actually helped Private Manning set up the encryption software he used”.
Mr Lamo said the software enabled Pte Manning to send classified data in small bits so that it would seem innocuous.
“It wouldn’t look too much different from your average guy doing his banking on line,” Mr Lamo said.
If someone allegedly gave Manning encryption software that would help download documents to pass onto Wikileaks, then presumably Manning deployed that in Iraq. And if someone from Wikileaks allegedly gave Manning software that subsequently got loaded onto DOD computers in Iraq, then it might explain their current theory of prosecution for conspiracy to leak this information.
The article (as well as a few others like it) on hackers who may have helped Manning came out on August 2, 2010, just days after Jacob Appelbaum had been stopped at the border and his computers–which he refused to decrypt–confiscated.
Appelbaum, of course, is one of the people whose Twitter account was subpoenaed last December. Only, unlike two of the other people listed on the document request (the two who are not US persons), Appelbaum was not named by name. He was named only by his Twitter handle, “ioerror.” Appelbaum was also apparently not–as Birgitta Jónsdóttir was–told by Twitter that DOJ wanted his twitter information. Both of those details have made me wonder whether there is another, still-sealed, warrant pertaining to Appelbaum, which the government would require for some uses since he is a US person.
After the subpoena was revealed, Appelbaum tweeted,
Motivation: …”I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear.”…
He is now on his way back to the US from Iceland; the ACLU plans to meet him at his flight (perhaps to make it harder to detain him as they did in July).
So what does the government think Manning loaded onto his computer, and how do they know the timing of it?