All Rights reserved
While gay activist and former Army lieutenant Dan Choi was ejected Monday from the military base where suspected WikiLeaks source Pvt. Bradley Manning is facing court-martial proceedings, Choi is apparently allowed to return for future hearings.
Over the weekend Choi attended the hearings at Fort Meade in Maryland. He returned Monday with Daniel Ellsberg, famous for leaking the Pentagon Papers to The New York Times, which published the reports in 1971. According to Politico, they were told to wait because the hearing was under way. While waiting in the courtyard, Choi saw another service member and called his name several times, but the sergeant did not respond. Choi said that's when he was forced to leave the grounds.
Choi told Politico that military authorities said he was heckling, but he disputes the claim. He said six military police officers pinned him to the ground, handcuffed him, and damaged part of his dress uniform. He was eventually released and was not charged, but he was told he could not return to the hearing for the rest of that day.
Today, an Army spokesperson told Politico that Choi violated policy by creating a disturbance when he was "calling out ranks and names of individuals in uniform supporting the procedures." The spokesperson's statement appeared to allow Choi's attendance at further hearings.
Manning, who turned 24 this week, has been detained in a military prison for more than a year on suspicion of providing the owners of the website WikiLeaks with confidential government information.