AP/U.S. Army, File

The valiant WikiLeaks whistle-blower is serving a 35-year prison sentence in Fort Leavenworth, Kan., and though Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel “greenlit ‘rudimentary’ treatment” for the private’s gender identity disorder, the military has continually denied Manning hormone therapy and surgery, according to her legal complaint. Until now, the only “concession” the armed forces have made during her detention, as detailed in the lawsuit, is to allow Manning to wear “female underwear and sports bras,” but have forbidden her from growing her hair longer among “other pillars of gender dysphoria treatment.”

The Guardian:

Chelsea Manning, the US army soldier who released hundreds of thousands of secret documents to WikiLeaks, has filed a lawsuit in a federal court that charges her military jailers with violating her constitutional rights by denying medical treatment for gender dysphoria.

The legal complaint, lodged with a US district court in Washington DC, accuses the army of repeatedly ignoring her pleas for appropriate treatment for her condition. It names as defendants: the secretary of defence Chuck Hagel, major general David Quantock of the army corrections command, and colonel Erica Nelson who commands the disciplinary barracks in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where Manning is held.

“Every day that goes by without appropriate treatment, [Manning] experiences escalating anxiety, distress and depression. She feels as though her body is being poisoned by testosterone,” the suit says…In July, the Associated Press reported that Hagel had given the green light to “rudimentary” treatment, but since then the only concession the military has made is to allow her to wear female underwear and sports bras. Meanwhile, she has not been allowed to express her female gender outwardly by growing her hair longer or through other forms of grooming customary for female prisoners….She has also been denied…specialist psychotherapy, hormone therapy and surgery to change her primary and/or secondary sex characteristics. The suit makes the chilling warning that “gender dysphoria intensifies over time. Incarcerated individuals, particularly male-to-female transsexuals like [Manning], are at a particularly high risk of engaging in self-harm including self-castration when treatment is withheld.”

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Also read: Chelsea Manning: ‘Islamic State Cannot Be Defeated by Bombs and Bullets’

—Posted by Natasha Hakimi Zapata

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