[Ed note: Do taxpayers get to finance his sex reassignment operation?]
Bradley Manning, the Army private who was sentenced to 35 years in military prison for giving classified documents to WikiLeaks, told the “Today” show in a statement on Thursday that he wants to live his life as a woman.
The 25-year-old former intelligence analyst said he identifies as female, and has since childhood. His statement said he wants to undergo hormone therapy to help his body transition from male to female — treatment that cannot be provided at Fort Leavenworth, the prison where he is likely to be sent, a spokeswoman for the facility told Courthouse News Service.
“As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me,” Manning said in the statement. “I am Chelsea Manning. I am a female. Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible.
Manning’s lawyer, David Coombs, said Manning wanted to wait until the trial was over to announce that he would now identify as a woman.