FORT MEADE, Md. —
Government transparency advocate Steven Aftergood, of the Federation of American Scientists, said the civilian cases, unlike the military ones, involved career intelligence workers who knowingly supplied foreign governments with U.S. secrets for years. Ames’ disclosures caused intelligence sources to be executed. Hanssen compromised ongoing intelligence operations on a massive scale.
Duke University law Professor Scott L. Silliman said Manning’s case doesn’t rise to those levels. While Manning disclosed a vast amount of information, “I don’t’ think you could call Bradley Manning a spy,” he said.
Military prisoners can earn up to 120 days a year off their sentence for good behavior and job performance, but must serve at least one-third of any prison sentence before they can become eligible for parole.
Manning will get credit for about 31⁄2 years of pretrial confinement, including 112 days for being illegally punished by harsh conditions at the Quantico, Va., Marine Corps brig.
Manning was convicted last month of 20 offenses, including six Espionage Act violations, five theft counts and computer fraud.