Chelsea Manning

Chelsea Manning's Espionage Conviction Gets Her Barred From Australia

The Australian government previously banned Snoop Dogg for failing to meet the standards of a character test.


Britta Pedersen/dpa/picture-alliance/Newscom

The former penal colony of Australia is moving to exclude whistleblower Chelsea Manning from entering the country because of her criminal record.

Manning, who was convicted in 2013 on espionage charges for leaking classified documents to Wikileaks, had been invited by the organization Think Inc. to give a series of lecture across the country, beginning with an event in Sydney this weekend.

On Wednesday the Australian government announced that it was going to deny Manning an entry visa because of her past convictions. In a letter to Manning, the country's Department of Home Affairs said that because of her "substantial criminal record" she did not pass the character test required by the country's 1958 Migration Act.

The Migration Act allows the government to exclude anyone who has been sentenced to more than a year in prison. That definitely includes Manning who received a 35-year sentence that was eventually commuted by former President Barack Obama.

Manning would not be the first controversial public figure barred from entering Australia for failing its character test. In 2007, rapper Snoop Dogg was denied entry to the country because of past weapons and drug convictions.

Dogg's exclusion stoked little controversy. Manning's however has provoked a storm of protest.

Suzi Jamil, Think Inc.'s director, has demanded Manning be allowed to enter the country, saying that "Ms. Manning offers formidable ideas and an insightful perspective which we are hoping to bring to the forefront of Australian dialogue" and has been petitioning the government to reverse course. Manning has told the Guardian that "we'll work it out."

Australian Sen. Richard Di Natale—leader of the Australian Greens—has asked the government to reverse course.

"To deny [Manning] the opportunity to speak to our community is unfair and unwarranted," wrote Di Natale in a letter to the government. "It is clear that Ms. Manning is not a public figure who incites violence or hate. Her actions have always been focused on transparency and accountability."

The controversy over Manning's exclusion from the country comes just a few months after Australia passed a strict an anti-espionage bill that creates stiff new penalties for anyone possessing or publishing sensitive information about the country's oversees operations. Critics have warned that the law risks penalizing not only whistleblowers like Manning, but also the journalists who receive or publish their revelations.

As someone intimately familiar with what it's like to be on the receiving end of American espionage laws, Manning might be able to offer a valuable and unique perspective on this new law to her Australian audience were she given the chance.

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  1. Wait. Wait. Haha. Wait.

    Australia has standards?

    Let the jokes commence. This is gonna be a great thread.

    1. Bradley Manning has nothing down under anymore.

      1. At’s nawt a tranny! At’s a tranny.

        1. Good god, you mean Australia doesn’t take felons anymore??

    2. I thought Australia banned guns and Chelsea manning has no pisstola anymore. No threat.

    3. Australians dont throw bearded tacos on the barbie?

    4. That’s just what this country needs: a cock in a frock on a rock.

    5. Cock crock.

  2. Australia isn’t letting people in if they’re convicts.

    /I said that with a straight face, gimme a cookie

    1. They’re trying to get on board with this diversity thing.

  3. He should respond by Tweeting a series of emojis and then ending it with “#wegotthis”

  4. Australia has always been weird about what they let in. Every since Robby admitted he owns two Yorkies, he’s been double banned.

    1. “Every since Robby admitted he owns two Yorkies”

      That guy’s like a walking stereotype

      1. I had to think in that post where he revealed that it was definitely a fun little troll at the HnRers. And it certainly got that reaction! I bet the Yorkies have more lustrous and better-smelling hair than damn near every commenter.

    2. On a serious note, Johnny Depp broke the law and unlike the US, Australia being an island nation with unique flora and fauna which has not been exposed to the animals, plants, viruses and diseases elsewhere in the world and therefore we have strict biosecurity controls which have generally worked for agriculture and the environment in Australia. The US could probably learn a few things from us with the different incursions of pests, both plant and animal, causing hell to your agricultural sector and environmental values.

  5. opportunity to supply yacht for off-shore speech and party. chelsea-by-the-sea.

  6. Australia controls it’s borders?
    Fn Nazis

  7. It would seem that the USA is not the only nation that wants to have a say on who gets inside its borders.

    1. It would seem that the USA is not the only nation that wants to apply arbitrary and irrational standards to who gets inside its borders.

      1. Regardless of this specific case, you believe that restricting entrance to people convicted of a crime are “arbitrary and irrational standards”?

        1. Well, when we allow “crime” to be defined arbitrarily and irrationally…


        2. Yes. Otherwise we’re talking about forbidding the entry of Turks who criticize Erdogen – as just one example of what a ‘they committed a *crime*’ standard gets you.

          1. Conversely, if someone is from a country known for terrorism and doesn’t have any verifiable records we should take them no matter what because they’re obviously trustworthy and their nation is so shitty that it really doesn’t matter if they’re terrorists. Once they get a taste of American food trucks they’ll give up militant Islam post haste!

      2. Andorra
        Czech Republic
        New Zealand
        San Marino
        South Korea
        United Kingdom

        That’s a list of Visa Waiver Program countries. Otherwise, it’s very easy to get a B-2 Visa. It’s actually quite simple to be a tourist, and the US doesn’t apply “irrational standards to who gets inside its borders.”

      3. It would seem that the USA is not the only nation that wants to apply arbitrary and irrational standards to who gets inside its borders.

        You know who else thought everyone should be within their borders?

        1. U Thant?

        2. Borders before the bankruptcy.

    2. Why should Australia take the convicted criminal garbage of the US or any other nation.

      1. Because you have plenty of criminals already in australia?

  8. They’re just mad we think they drink Foster’s.

    1. No one drinks Fosters in Australia, it is something that we sell to the rest of the world because we know they have no taste in beers.

  9. Man, Australia do like to manage its borders.

    1. If you let one tranny in, opens the door to chain migration and, before you know it, you’ve got a sea of poor trannies and their poor tranny kids taking native (well, not *Native* native) Australian’s jobs and mooching off the welfare system.

  10. Chelsea Manning’s Espionage Conviction Gets Him Barred From Australia

    Fixed for accuracy.

    Genetics trump junk pop science.

    1. U triggered?

    2. Manning is genetically a spy?

      1. Where did he say that? I had trouble parsing it myself, but I think he was saying that science tells us that heredity, and not only his soda habit, is responsible for the President’s famously voluptuous posterior.

  11. If they won’t have Snoop then they don’t deserve Snoop.

  12. Does Chelsea have her PSA tested?

    If so, why?

  13. Oh, Bradley. You should have spent more on those surgeries brotini.

  14. just another reason not to go to any of the creepy common wealth countries

  15. I swear Chelsea actually looks more butch after the surgeries than before. (The fact that he was very small and very effeminate was a lifelong source of extreme awkwardness and unhappiness for him.) Seriously, if Eddie Murphy saw this lady walking down Tenth Avenue, and then saw David Spade in high heels and a wig behind her, who do you think he’d stop for?

  16. I suppose that is tack Manning’s rep wanted to go in, but ex Pvt. Manning does not seem like an intellect fostering formidable ideas.

  17. Did Manning expose any crimes or misconduct that I’m unaware of?

    I thought she just handed a year’s worth of diplomatic traffic over to WikiLeaks. It was embarrassing to have our attaches’ frank opinions about foreign leaders plastered all over the internet, but I don’t remember anything noteworthy other than the shear volume.

  18. On a hippie trail, head full of zombie

    I met a strange lady, she made me nervous

    1. S/he took me in and gave me lectures
      And s/he said
      Do you have a front hole under?
      Where your sack was torn asunder?

  19. AH! Real world consequences. YES.

  20. “Ms. Manning offers formidable ideas and an insightful perspective which we are hoping to bring to the forefront of Australian dialogue”

    Which alone is adequate reason to keep him…her…it out of Australia. If Manning has “formidable ideas and an insightful perspective,” Benedict Arnold was a freaking genius and Vidkun Quisling deserves the Nobel Prize.

  21. Manning was no whistleblower.

    1. He blew something hard.

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