I guess this is how it works in military prison, but following a July suicide attempt that was linked to her ongoing struggle to be allowed to fully transition from male to female in prison, Chelsea Manning has officially been sentenced to two weeks in solitary confinement. The New York Times has the news of the sentencing following a decision by an Army disciplinary board. Reportedly one week of the sentence will be suspended so long as Manning gets in no further trouble for six months.
The public first learned of Manning's suicide attempt last week in the wake of a decision by the Army to allow her to go forward with gender reassignment surgery. Meanwhile, however, Manning has been fighting with the Department of Defense and her jailers at Fort Leavenworth over the right to groom and present herself as female, and only last year decided to allow her to receive hormone treatments.
Per the Times, Manning was found unresponsive in her cell in July, and in connection with the incident she was charged with "resisting a guard force team that entered her cell; conduct that threatened the orderly running of the prison barracks; and possessing prohibited property," the latter being a copy of Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy by Gabriella Coleman. She was acquitted of the first charge, but found guilty of the other two.
Her ACLU attorney, Chase Strangio, says the Army board has made a terrible decision to remand her to solitary, which could only create greater psychological problems "for someone struggling with very recent suicidal ideation." Strangio also confirms that the suicide attempt was directly "linked to her mounting despair that she might serve many more years in prison without being able to proceed in her gender transition."
Manning herself issued a statement Friday via support network Fight For the Future saying of the decision, "I am feeling hurt. I am feeling lonely. I am embarrassed by the decision. I don’t know how to explain it."
There is no date set for the confinement to begin, and Manning says she will have 15 days to appeal the decision once she receives it in writing.