Chelsea Manning

Witness: Manning Leak Cost Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars

Military scrambled to assess impact


Assessing the breach of the largest leak of classified data in U.S. history cost the military hundreds of thousands of dollars, a retired Army officer on Wednesday told the judge weighing the length of time soldier Bradley Manning will spend in prison.

Retired Colonel James McCarl said the release of hundreds of thousands of diplomatic cables, battlefield videos and other classified data on the WikiLeaks pro-transparency website prompted a flurry of activity as officials scrambled to assess the potential degree of impact on wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Colonel Denise Lind, the military judge hearing Manning's court-martial, last week convicted the 25-year-old Army private first class on 19 charges that included espionage and theft. Manning was working as a low-level intelligence analyst in Baghdad more than three years ago when he was arrested and accused of releasing more than 700,000 secret documents to WikiLeaks.